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QUARTERLY BUSINESS • WINTER 2011 $7.95

Unique Coverage of Events Worldwide


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COVER STORY

DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS

Clooney Visits White House 140 EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Dawn Parker

March, 2011 Reception at the Hay-Adams 110 May, 2011 Reception at the Four Seasons Washington, D.C. 97 Admiral Leasing 53 Afghanistan 48 & 152 Australia, Tom Corcoran 128 Austria, Ambassador Dr. Prosl 98

Jim Coleman Cadillac 2 Latvia 156 Liam Neeson 175

Austria, Diplomatic Connections Reception 104

NCUSAR 122

Amtrak 23

Nyumbani 138

British - Prince William and Kate Middleton 12

PAHEF 70

British - Queen Elizabeth II 173

Peninsula Beverly Hills Inside Front Cover

British Embassy, Diwali 150

Peninsula Chicago Inside Front Cover

British Embassy, Scottish Government 24

Peninsula New York 16 & Inside Front Cover

Canadian Embassy , Gary Sinise 77

Precise Home Management 10

Cosby, Bill 92

QinetiQ North America, Dragon Runner 155

Carlyle Hotel in New York 43

Ritz Carlton 127

Concordia Hotel 61 Clinton Global Initiative 26

Saudi Arabian Airlines 120

DC Livery 95

Sofitel Chicago Water Tower 30 & 37

Dentist, Dr. Tarek Mogharbel 162 Elysian Hotel in Chicago 18, 143, 176 & Inside Back Cover European Union, Amb. Joao de Almeida 20

Saudi National Day 119

Taylor Swift 82 Tony Blair 54 Turkey, Embassy Residence 116

European Union, Baroness Ashton 74

United Nations, Demi Moore & Ashton Kutcher 62

Fairfax at Embassy Row 8

United Nations Foundation, Global Engagement 132

FIFA, Qatar and Russia 170 Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts 1 & 97

United Nations Foundation, Times Square 66 US Limo System 60 U.S. Sedan Service 146

George Clooney, Darfur 140

Washington Hospital Center 163 - 169

Hay-Adams 86, 91, 110 & 111

White House, Michelle Obama 78 Wings Jets 6

Helga’s Catering 96 InterContinental Hotels Group 5 & 38 InterContinental New York Barclay Back Cover Willard InterContinental Washington, D.C. Back Cover InTouch USA Wireless Communications 81

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ADVERTISING EXECUTIVES Hiam Awad and Kendra Edwards EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT Kyle Byram ART DIRECTOR Larry Smith CONTRIBUTING DESIGN & CREATIVE KDG Advertising, Design & Marketing Michael Socha - msocha@kdgadvertising.com DIPLOMATIC CORRESPONDENTS and CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Roland Flamini, Meghan Lawson, Shaun Waterman, James Winship, PhD, Ashley Gatewood, Karin Lornsen, Kerry McKenney, Sangeeta Ahuja, LCol Douglas Martin To contact an advertising executive CALL: 202.536.4810 FAX: 202.370.6882 EMAIL: info@diplomaticconnections.com DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS WEBSITE DESIGN &DEVELOPMENT IMS (Inquiry Management Systems) 304 Park Avenue South, 11th Floor New York, NY 10010 TOLL FREE: 877.467.8721 X701 Website: www.ims.com Marc Highbloom, Vice President marc@ims.ca Maria D’Urso, Project Manager Mariad@ims.ca CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Christophe Avril, Peteris Alunans, Gustavo Gargallo Glen Bullard, Major William Church, Huyen Pham Rich Riggins, UN Foundation/Diane Bondareff & Stuart Ramson, Franmarie Metzler/Reflections Photography, United Nations, Chad Fleschner, Clinton Global Initiative

United Nations, George Clooney 140

G-20 in Seoul, South Korea 158 Germany, Reunification Day 88

Assistant to the Editor Meghan Lawson

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To order photos from the events go to: www.diplomaticconnections.com Send any name or address changes in writing to: Diplomatic Connections 4410 Massachusetts Avenue / #200 Washington, DC 20016 Diplomatic Connections Quarterly Business is published Quarterly Diplomatic Connections does not endorse any of the goods and services offered herein this publication. Copyright 2011 by Diplomatic Connections All rights reserved. Cover photo credits: Canadian Ambassador Doer, Captain Bergeron & Gary Sinise, Glen Bullard; UN Secretary-General Ki-moon, Demi Moore & Ashton Kutcher, UN photo/Paulo Filgueiras; FIFA 2022 Qatar photo, Karim Jaafar/AFP/Getty Images; Taylor Swift, Chris Graythen/Getty Images; Lance Armstrong, Richard Branson, Bill Gates & President Clinton, Clinton Global Initiative; Liam Neeson, Dave Hogan/Getty Images; David Cook, Stuart Ramson/ United Nations Foundation; Prince William & Kate Middleton, Chris Jackson, Getty Images; George Clooney on cover & page 4, Official White House photos by Pete Souza


The World MeeTs aT InTerConTInenTal

Buckhead • Atlanta

Harbor Court • Baltimore

The Willard • DC

Houston

The Barclay • NYC

San Francisco

Cleveland

Cleveland Suites

Times Square • NYC

Mark Hopkins • SF

Do you live an InterContinental Life? The world’s first truly international hotel brand is located in more than 60 countries with local insight that comes from over 60 years of experience. InterContinental ® Hotels & Resorts believes that superior, understated service is important, but what makes us truly different is the genuine interest we show in our guests. Every day, we connect our well-traveled guests to what’s special about a destination, by sharing our knowledge so they enjoy authentic experiences that will enrich their lives and broaden their outlook.

For delegation travel and diplomatic events, contact your IHG Key Account Director, Carla Cannonito at carla.cannonito@ihg.com

©2010 InterContinental Hotels & Resorts. All rights reserved. Most hotels are independently owned and/or operated.


Domestic flights or International flights, Wings Jets customizes each flight with its Boutique level service. Call 888.946.4753 for a quote. 6


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F Traditional and elegant in style, the 259 guest

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elevated beds dressed in crisp duvets, 300 thread count linens, adorned

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Th e F a i r f a x at E m b a s s y Ro w 2100 Massachusetts Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20008 202.293.2100 Luxurycollection.com/Fairfax

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Embassy of Mexico National Day Event Uzbekistan Embassy

Nestled among the stately The Fairfax at Embassy Row,

mansions of Massachusetts

a Starwood Luxury Collection

Avenue, The Fairfax at Embassy

Hotel, is located in the heart of

Row, A Starwood Luxury

Embassy Row in Washington,

Collection Hotel, is a Washington,

D.C. The Fairfax offers superior

D.C. landmark with a rich history Event at the Embassy of United Arab Emirates

that spans more than seventy-five

accommodations, amenities and services to all of its

years. With its legendary restaurant,

international travelers.

The Jockey Club, The Fairfax at Embassy Row is the epicenter

Shirley Phull, Director of Diplomatic

of international discussion and

Sales at The Fairfax at Embassy Row,

American politics. It is the place to be in Washington, D.C.

serves the needs of the city’s Meena Shankar, Ambassador of India

embassies exclusively through the partnering and the processing of all communication between the embassies and The Fairfax. Ms. Phull brings experience, talent, commitment and savoir faire to the fulfillment of the various needs of the hotel’s diplomatic clientele. It is this level of dedication that sets The Fairfax at Embassy Row apart from the rest.

Embassy of Morocco National Day Event

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PRECISE HOME MANAGEMENT LEADS THE WAY IN TRAINING. EDUCATION IS THE KEY TO A PERFECTLY RUN HOME. PRECISE HOME MANAGEMENT TAKES THE WORRY OUT OF HIRING HOUSEHOLD STAFF. Andrew Lowrey, Founder and President of Precise Home Management

ood help is hard to find, as the old saying goes, which is why it’s good to have Andrew Lowrey at your service. Lowrey is the Founder and President of Precise Home Management, a Baltimore based company which provides domestic solutions to a discerning clientele world-wide. He has had a long and varied career in service and truly understands what it takes to run a household smoothly and efficiently for maximum peace of mind. Lowrey, who grew up in Cambridge, England, began his career in service to British royalty. He has worked in five star hotels, served aboard the QEII, and owned and operated his own tea shop in Cambridge. After 10

graduating from the prestigious Ivor Spencer International Butler School in Sydney, Lowrey served as Head Steward aboard a 345 ft yacht privately owned by a Saudi businessman who served as an advisor to the king. After many adventures he settled in the United States where he worked as a butler for one of Maryland’s most prominent families. In 1998 Lowrey left his position to start Precise Home Management to address a lack of resources he saw for both homeowners and domestic staff. Today, Precise Home Management is a leading Domestic Staffing Agency and Consultancy, thanks to Lowrey’s vast knowledge of domestic affairs, his attention to detail and his dedication to total satisfaction.

1007 North Calvert Street, Baltimore MD, 21202 410.659.9200 Office

410.659.9202 Fax


What distinguishes Precise Home Management in the field of domestic staffing is Lowrey’s thorough and painstaking assessment of his clients’ needs. Once he has carefully screened applicants and run detailed background checks on them, he personally oversees their training and is on hand to ensure their seamless introduction into the clients’ home. Whether an estate manager or a housekeeper, a chauffer or a private chef, Lowrey guarantees the suitability of his placements; if a client is dissatisfied with a placement Precise Home Management will find a more appropriate candidate quickly and at no additional charge. Lowrey has even been known to step in himself, once acting as a chauffer until a suitable applicant could be found and trained. As well as sourcing and placing qualified domestic professionals, Precise Home Management offers in-home training and education for new or existing staff. For the busy homeowner Precise Home Management provides many home organizational services. Lowrey, drawing on his years of experience in Estate Management will personally draw up detailed protocols for each staff member of daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly duties as well as detailed lists of all the employers preferences, from what scents to avoid to the exact placement of pillows on a chair. Lowrey will personally oversee the implementation of all protocols in order to en-

maintenance; proper care of couture; use of different cleaning equipment, materials and ecological products; care of antiques; protocol for interacting with family and sure a smoothly run household. He also guests; hospitality; and how to properly offers Household Manuals and Directo- answer the phone and take messages. All ries, which list all pertinent information applicants will take personal instruction regarding the house, its contents and its from Lowrey, with additional lessons from occupants. Invaluable for insurance purspecialists and profesposes, these directories are also an unsional instrucparalleled tool for keeping track of tors in varithe demands of a busy family. This ous fields. year, in a long awaited development, Whether Precise Home Management will be you have a working with Alternet Home Inforlive-in staff of mation Systems, a company which 20 or a single housesince 1997 has worked with the keeper, Andrew Lowrey and Precise Home world’s most prestigious families Management have the tools, expertise and and their estate staffs. Together, Pre- experience to take the worry and stress out cise Home Management and Alternet of training and managing your domestic can create web-based communication, help. Good help, it turns out, is a phone information and management tools for call away. private estates, with services and software for the management and display of fine art collections, facilities, libraries, travel planning, estate architecture, garden and grounds management, and more. Ever forward looking, in the fall of 2010 Precise Home Management, in addition to continuing to offer in-home training will open a Housekeepers Training Academy. Lowrey has seen an increasing need for better educated staff as fewer people today are properly trained in the arts of domestic service. The intensive week course will cover, among other things: wardrobe

WWW.PRECI SEHO M E . COM

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Prince William and Kate Middleton arrive to pose for photographs in the State Apartments of St. James Palace on November 16, 2010 in London, England. After much speculation, Clarence House announced the engagement of Prince William to Kate Middleton. The couple will get married in the Spring of 2011 and will continue to live in North Wales while Prince William works as an air sea rescue pilot for the Royal Air Force. The couple became engaged during a recent holiday in Kenya having been together for eight years.

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B Y: R O L A N D F L A M I N I

W

hen Prince Charles, the heir to the For the marriage turned out to be no British throne, married Lady Diana fairy tale. The royal couple went through Spencer in 1981, Robert an acrimonious divorce in Runcie, the Archbishop of 1996, and a year later Diana Canterbury, who conducted died in a tragic car accident in the marriage ceremony in Paris. Fast forward 14 years London’s St. Paul’s Cathelater in November of this year, dral, called it “the stuff of Diana’s elder son Prince which fairy tales are made.” William, second in line to the The bride was just 19, shy British throne, announced his and starry eyed about the engagement to Catherine husband she had only (Kate) Middleton. He used A close up of Kate Middleton’s engagement recently met and hardly ring also Princess Diana’s engagement ring. the occasion to invoke his knew. Romance seemed to mother’s memory, and he gave be in the air, and the Archbishop can hardly Kate his mother’s sapphire and diamond be blamed for getting it wrong. engagement ring. But the circumstances DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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could hardly have been more different. Prince William (birth date: June 21, 1982) proposed to Kate (birth date: January 9, 1982) after an on-and-off eight-year courtship, time enough for Kate to get some idea what she would be letting herself in for – as the prince puts it – “to back out if she needed to before it got too much.” At St. Andrews University, their relationship seems to have evolved in a thoroughly modern campus style, from being members of the same group to friends with privileges, to Kate recently moving in to Clarence House, the prince’s official London residence. In choosing a commoner as his future queen, Prince William is breaking new ground. No heir to the throne has wed a commoner since the 17th century. Commoner is a neutral term not a disparaging one that simply denotes 14

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someone who does not belong to either royalty or the aristocracy. Princess Diana’s family, the Spencers, had been titled landowners long before the Windsor dynasty began. In class conscious Britain, Kate’s parents – the Middletons – are wealthy middle class owners of a successful mail-order party planning business. So wealthy, in fact, that they will share the costs of the wedding with the royal family, with British tax payers paying for security. But William is following a trend among Europe’s eight (Holland, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Spain, Monaco and Luxembourg) other royal families: all but one of the heirs to the throne have married non-aristocrats, the most recent being Crown Princess Victoria (of Sweden) who this year married her personal trainer.


Their Royal Highnesses Prince William (center) and Prince Harry (left) watch the Concert for Diana at Wembley Stadium on July 1, 2007 in London, England. The Concert was on the date that would have been the late Princess’ 46th birthday and marked 10 years since her death with an event headed by Princes William and Harry to celebrate her life. Kate Middleton is just steps away from Prince William (upper right corner of photo) Parents of Kate Middleton, Michael and Carole Middleton, make a statement following the engagement of their daughter to Prince William, outside their home near the village of Bucklebury on November 16, 2010 in Berkshire, United Kingdom. Prince William, who is second in line to the throne following his father Prince Charles, has been in a relationship with Ms. Middleton for the past 8 years.

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Britain’s Prince William and his fiancée Kate Middleton pose for photographers during a photocall to mark their engagement, in the State Rooms of St. James’s Palace, central London on November 16, 2010. Britain’s Prince William has given his fiancée Kate Middleton the engagement ring that belonged to his late mother Diana, Princess of Wales. The blue sapphire and diamond ring was given to Diana by William’s father, Prince Charles, when they became engaged in February 1981. Charles and Diana divorced in 1996 and she was killed in a car crash in Paris the following year.

Unlike Charles and Diana, Prince William and Kate Middleton have decided that their wedding on April 29 next year will be in historic Westminster Abbey, where 38 kings and queens of England have been crowned in an unbroken sequence since the 11th century – and where, assuming the British monarchy survives – William himself will be crowned following his father. It will be surprising if a few royal wedding invitations don’t land in the Washington area, but DC already has a link to the young couple: Sir David Manning, lately the British ambassador, has been appointed temporary adviser to Prince William and his younger brother Prince Harry. n A general view of the West Towers of Westminster Abbey the day after the announcement of the engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton on November 17, 2010 in London, England. Westminster Abbey has been identified as the likely venue for the ceremony. DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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Brussels Envoy says:

European Union Stands Strong An Interview with European Union Ambassador Joao Vale de Almeida

In Washington, some people think the 27-country European Union is moribund while others believe it is enjoying a new lease on life. By Roland Flamini Not surprisingly, the new EU ambassador to the United States, Joao Vale de Almeida counts himself firmly among the latter. As he stressed in a recent exclusive interview, the reforms of the Lisbon Treaty will usher in a new era in Europe. The 53-yearold Portuguese who presented his credentials in August is the quintessential Eurocrat: he has been EU Commission press spokesman, chief of staff and main adviser to European Union Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, and latterly the director general of external relations at the EU Commission. Diplomatic Connections: A distinguished foreign policy analyst in Washington recently wrote an article claiming that the European Union, for a variety of reasons, was dying a slow death. What is your assessment of the European Union’s health, and why does the European Union arouse such skepticism that people keep writing its obituary? Ambassador Joao de Almeida: I think it’s a sign of the importance of the European Union, and I respect opposing views; but I don’t agree that the European is dying, or is in decline. The European Union is adapting to the times – to its own new structure of 27 countries. With the Treaty of Lisbon it has equipped itself to face these new challenges; and I’m more than optimistic and confident that the European Union will once again surprise those who think that it is dying. The Union is a complex animal, unique in the world: 27 countries that come together, and agree to share their sovereignty with others for the common good. Countries that were divided by two world wars? It has to be complicated. But I usually say that I prefer that we

spend our time arguing about the minutes of a meeting than that we spend our time fighting each other. Our mechanisms are complex, but that’s part of what we are. Diplomatic Connections: Let’s look at some of the most frequently heard complaints: for example, the European Union was slow to react to the global economic meltdown, and the continuing crisis in some member states is undermining both them and the euro zone as a whole. Ambassador Joao de Almeida: The way we dealt with the 2008 financial crisis deserves some recognition. No one disputes that the financial crisis started in the United States, but immediately, it gained a global dimension, and we found ourselves together in the G20 dealing with a global crisis. The United States and the European Union were instrumental in making the G20 work, because basically we had to. There were divergences and differences of opinion on elements of the package of issues, but overall both of us wanted global solutions. Diplomatic Connections: But since London and Pittsburg, the European Union members have generally opted for belt tightening and austerity programs, and the Obama Administration for pumping stimulus money into its stagnant economy… Ambassador Joao de Almeida: I know about the austerity versus stimulus debate, I’ve participated in it, but it’s an artificial debate. Both of us need to stimulate the economy; both of us need a measure of conservatism in our fiscal systems. There are different nuances, but our economies both here and in Europe need growth, but it must be sustainable.

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Diplomatic Connections: Another criticism: The European Union has failed to engage younger generations. Many of the younger Europeans have no emotional attachment to the European Union, and only see its problems. Ambassador Joao de Almeida: The fact is that each generation has a different kind of attitude towards the European Union. My sons – 25 years old and 23 – and their generation understand that Europe is relevant for them. They do feel themselves to be European citizens. They take it for granted that European peoples and countries live together. They don’t imagine something that goes back in time to the existence of borders, to wars between Belgium and Germany – it doesn’t enter their minds. Our young people don’t have this vivid memory of what the wars of the last century were and why we created the union. But still, they consider it unthinkable that European countries will fight each other; or that they will have to show a passport to go from Belgium to France – or that they won’t be able to work in another European country if they have a job offer just because they don’t have the nationality of the country where the company is located. These are very strong elements of adherence to the concept of European Union – different from my generation or my father’s, but as respectable and as strong as the others in making the union make sense for people. Diplomatic Connections: The frequent European complaint is that Europe is not a high priority for the Obama administration. In your dealings with the administration, have you found this to be the case? Ambassador Joao de Almeida: I can only quote the White House announcement that President Obama attended at the EU-U.S.A. summit in Lisbon in November. It stated in part: “The United States has no stronger partner than Europe in advancing security and prosperity around the world.” I think that summarizes the official line, and we happen to share this view: the United States is the most important partner of the European Union. As I talk to officials and others here, some tell me they would expect more from the European Union, and faster. But 22

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no one challenges the basic assumption that we are, and will most likely remain, the most important partner of the United States. Now, we are a group of developed, democratic, relatively prosperous countries, that share the same values as the United States, so we are not, by definition, a problem to the United States. But just because we are not a problem, there is no reason for us not to be a priority. Exactly because we share values and we have largely a common agenda we can join efforts in solving common challenges. Diplomatic Connections: Sometimes it seems that Washington prefers to deal bi-laterally with member states because it finds dealing with Brussels too complicated. Ambassador Joao de Almeida: Having a relationship with individual members should not exclude having a strong relationship with the European Union as such. For some issues you have to deal with the European Union: I will mention just three. Financial regulation, climate change, sanctions on Iran. Today, decisions on all three are taken at the European level, and it would be difficult to make real progress on any of these if you are dealing on a bi-lateral basis. Diplomatic Connections: The Commission structure is seen in Washington as bewildering and people quote Henry Kissinger’s perhaps apocryphal remark when he was secretary of state that he didn’t call Brussels because he didn’t have a phone number, meaning that there was no counterpart who could make policy decisions. Ambassador Joao de Almeida: If anyone wants to know what the European Union thinks about an issue in foreign policy, the person to call now is Catherine Ashton in Brussels. In Washington, they should call me. This is one change that the Lisbon Treaty brings that is far from irrelevant. We are in the process of building the External Action Service [headed by Catherine Ashton], and we will have a better structure, a strengthened structure in Brussels. Baroness Ashton will have at her service a fully fledged diplomatic apparatus brining together for the first time European officials like me and diplomats coming from the member states. Our goal is that by 2013 one third of the diplomats will come from the member states. Diplomatic Connections: As you develop your foreign policy structure will you also develop a common foreign policy? Ambassador Joao de Almeida: That’s a good point. The External Action Service will create better conditions for political consensus around a common foreign policy. We have 134 delegations around the world: when External Action comes into being we will have more means, and we will have incorporated national diplomats.


Diplomatic Connections: What about security policy? Ambassador Joao de Almeida: We already have a common security policy: Cathy Ashton is in charge of foreign affairs and security. Of course you can discuss about the level of importance of this policy. It can only improve and deepen in the future, but it’s already there. We do a lot more than people think; we have a number of military missions around the world in hot spots. For example, we have civilian and military components in Afghanistan, and in Somalia. Diplomatic Connections: Finally a question on further enlargement, specifically the issue of Turkish accession. Which is happening faster, the Turks having second thoughts about joining the European Union, or the European Union having second thoughts about accepting the Turks? Ambassador Joao de Almeida: I leave that for you to judge. We are engaged in negotiations with Turkey, the purpose of which is to create conditions for membership. If the conditions are met, normally Turkey should enter the European Union. If the conditions are not met there can be no accession. This is the thrust of any negotiation. Diplomatic Connections: If Turkish doubts increase, is the process worth pursuing? Ambassador Joao de Almeida: The issue of Turkey’s accession is more important than, say, Austria’s accession. Austria

joined in ’95 with the same [pre-entry] negotiations, but, of course, what was at stake there was of a different magnitude. I’m not saying that the Turkish path is an easy one, no one says that. It has implications for the union. It’s a very big country with a different geographic and geopolitical context, an economy which is at the moment still far away from elements of the European Union, and not yet capable of incorporating all the rules of the European Union, so it’s a complex issue. Diplomatic Connections: Hence the conditions. Ambassador Joao de Almeida: It also raises political issues. And there is a debate in Europe – in some of our countries more than others – about whether it’s good or bad to have Turkey; as much as there is a debate in Turkey about “Is it good for us to go through all this process of reform that accession to the Union requires without us having a full guarantee that we’ll be members?” The debate is there. Progress has to be made: it will take a number of years before we are anywhere closer to thinking that the conditions were met, and the most important thing is that Turkey keeps on the track of reform. It’s important I believe also for the United States that the process of reform that has started in Turkey because of the accession negotiations continues. But of course there is a debate on both sides about the accession. Diplomatic Connections: Thank you, Ambassador.

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Celebrating Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink

Ambassador Sir Nigel Sheinwald; Congressman Mike McIntyre (D-NC); Darren Burgess, Second Secretary, Scottish Affairs

Simon Brooking, Beam Global Spirits and Wine and Richard Lochhead, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment

Dr. Peter Cressy of the Distilled Beverage Council speaks before guests at the British Embassy.

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Richard Lochhead, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment with Laura McGhee after McGhee performed traditional Scottish music for the crowd at the British Embassy.

Laura McGhee performs traditional Scottish music for the crowd at the British Embassy.

The Scottish Government partnered with UK Trade & Investment and the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) to host a Scotch Whisky tasting reception to mark the visit of Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment Richard Lochhead MSP on December 7th. By kind permission of Sir Nigel Sheinwald, British Ambassador to the United States, the celebration took place in the holidayadorned ballroom at the Ambassador’s Residence. Guests were treated to a vast selection of matured single-malt Scotch Whiskies and a signature whisky cocktail designed for the holiday season before being entertained by Scottish musician Laura McGhee who sang her own compositions and transitioned between playing the fiddle and guitar. The menu, designed by Scottish Chef Gary Robinson, showcased Scotland’s culinary excellence and included Haggis meatballs on whisky cream, pea and pepper frittatas with Scottish cheddar and Scottish beef tartar. Cabinet Secretary Lochhead, visiting Washington, D.C., to promote Scottish food and drink, spoke on the importance of Scotch whisky to the Scottish economy and reminded guests that with each dram of Scotch, they also experienced a little piece of Scotland.

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GLOBAL AID WEEK IN NEW YORK LEADERS, BUSINESS EXECUTIVES AND CELEBRITIES UNITE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE

CGI 2010 Plenary President Bill Clinton, Founding Chairman, Clinton Global Initiative, 42nd President of the United States and President Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States of America

By Roland Flamini

September 20 launched Help

the World week

in Manhattan. Amid heavy security, foreign leaders, top business executives, celebrities and philanthropists shunted in chaos-creating motorcades from one location to another for a series of summits and conferences dedicated to fighting poverty and disease by making attempts towards closing the gap between the wealthy nations and poor ones.

Left to right: Former President Bill Clinton; HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Kingdom of Bahrain; Salam Fayyad, Prime Minister of the Palestinian National Authority and Shimon Peres, President of the State of Israel at the CGI 2010 Special Session: Middle East

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POVERTY EDUCATION

INTERNATIONAL AID

WOMEN’S RIGHTS

CHILD MORTALITY

HIV MATERNAL HEALTH

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At

the United Nations, the annual opening of the National Assembly is always an occasion for collective expressions of concern and consciousness-raising statements about global inequalities. But this year, humanitarian issues actually topped the agenda as the world body reviewed the progress of its Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a wide-ranging set of eight ambitious targets with a 2015 deadline on poverty, education, international aid, women’s rights, child mortality, maternal health, the spread of HIV and the environment. At the same time, environmental advocates from around the world also convened in a separate summit in New York to see

Inevitably, the global economic downturn has undermined progress of the Millennium Development Goals

Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan speaking at the CGI 2010 Plenary: Harnessing Human Potential

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what could be accomplished despite the disappointing results of the 2009 Copenhagen Climate Change Conference. And just about 10 minutes away from the United Nations at a prominent New York hotel, the sixth annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative, which raises money from the private sector to tackle the problems of the developing world, shared some of the same distinguished participants and added a few celebrities of its own. The floating population of VIPs spotted at the summits and in Midtown traffic jams (usually speaking on their cell phones) included Queen Rania of Jordan, Africa’s first elected head of state Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Princess Maxima


Ten billion dollars... is related to combating HIV... new HIV cases dropped 25 percent across 22 African countries since 2000. Right to left: Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and Katie Couric at the CGI 2010 Plenary: Empowering Girls and Women

Katie Couric, Anchor and Managing Editor, CBS Evening News CGI 2010 Plenary: Empowering Girls and Women

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U.N. numbers show the maternal mortality rate has dropped by 34 percent in the past 20 years.

Hillary Rodham Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State, at the CGI Plenary: Empowering Girls and Women

of the Netherlands, Sheika Mozah bin Nasser al-Missned, the stunning and forward looking wife of the ruler of Qatar, Microsoft Corporation chairman Bill Gates and his wife Melinda, actress Demi Moore and husband Ashton Kutcher, cyclist Lance Armstrong, designer Tommy Hilfinger, Tony Blair’s wife Cherie, and a slew of hi-tech chiefs including Peter Buffet of NOVO and Jack Dorsey, Chairman of Twitter. As usual, President Barack Obama delivered the presidential address at the United Nations General Assembly, and together with the First Lady Michelle closed the Clinton Global Initiative. Inevitably, the global economic downturn has undermined progress of the Millennium Development Goals, but that’s not the only reason why the program was $20 billion short of its targets. A U.N. report on the current state of the MDGs says the program’s “uneven” progress was also due “to unmet commitments, inadequate resources, lack of focus and accountability, and insufficient dedication to sustainable development.” Ten billion dollars of that shortfall is related to combating HIV, which had been the most successful part of the Millennium Goals; new HIV cases dropped 25 percent across 22 African countries since 2000. Yet it is the dilatoriness of African governments in meeting pledges that accounts for 80 percent of the gap, threatening its further progress, according to U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. “And that means $16 billion,” Ban says. The week brought calls for action, promises of support and recommitment to previously established pledges. That was the good news. However, with the economic climate still uncertain, some observers raised questions whether the new promises would, or could, be kept, causing Ban to warn world leaders not to “balance budgets on the backs of the poor.” 32

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Left to right: Fadi Ghandour, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Aramex International; Valerie B. Jarrett, Senior Advisor and Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs and Public Engagement, The White House; Leila Janah, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Samasource at the CGI 2010 Plenary: Strengthening MarketBased Solutions

Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Group speaking at the CGI 2010 Keynote Luncheon: Environment and Energy


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Left to right: Melinda French Gates, Co-Chair and Trustee, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Bob McDonald, Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer, Procter & Gamble at the CGI 2010 Opening Plenary

To close the gap, the United Nations turned to the private sector for help, with Ban chairing a private sector forum of participants of the level of British airline owner and entrepreneur Richard Branson. At another related meeting, Princess Maxima, wife of the Netherlands’ Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, called for more effort to extend financial inclusion in the developing world – in other words, access to a range of financial services including banking, insurance, payment services and remittances. Left to right: Mohamed Ibrahim, Chairman, Mo Ibrahim Foundation; Ashton Kutcher, Co-Chair, Demi and Ashton Foundation speaking at the CGI 2010: Breakout Session, Democracy and Voice: Technology for Citizen Employment and Human Rights

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Princess Maxima, who had a career in banking and finance before marrying the prince, is the U.N. Secretary General’s Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance Development. “Bank accounts help create security,” she argued, calling it unbelievable that 2.7 billion people across the globe don’t have access to banking facilities. “If you put money in a bank you don’t have to hide it under a mattress, or carry it on you.” At the Clinton Global Initiative, former President Bill Clinton announced record financial commitments – 291 new pledges valued at $6 billion. Reviewing his Global Initiative’s performance over the past six years, Clinton boasted: “In total, more than 1,900 commitments have been made, worth $63 billion, and they have improved the lives of nearly 300 million people.” He rattled off some of the Initiative’s specific achievements: 16 million women and girls have access to empowerment initiatives; 90 million acres of forest protected and restored; 20 million people have access to safe water. Clinton also announced additional aid projects for the shambles of earthquake-stricken Haiti, an area of special concern for the former president who co-chairs the Haiti reconstruction organization. He told an audience that included 67 percent or former heads of state and government, and more than 600 business


leaders that in an increasingly interactive world, governments alone could not deal with what he called “the complicated, ongoing blizzard of conflicts between the positive and negative forces of interdependence” without outside help from a committed private sector. Among other global challenges he warned that “the incidence of economically devastating natural disas-

Luis Alberto Moreno, President, Inter-American Development Bank speaking at the CGI 2010 Breakout Session, Beyond Microfinance: The Next Stage of Economic Development; (far right) Van Jones, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress

ters is going to accelerate” in the future due to climate change, and hence there was a need to better organize response to such natural and man-made catastrophes. Maternal mortality and the condition of women were big themes across the spectrum of New York meetings, and Amnesty International had a “maternal death clock” installed in Times Square showing a running total of maternal deaths during the summit. According to Amnesty, about 1,000 women die each day in childbirth or from pregnancy complications, primarily from bleeding, infection, hypertension or unsafe abortions. The United Nations launched a Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health with funding of $26 billion. U.N. numbers show the maternal mortality rate has dropped by 34 percent in the past 20 years, but that’s not fast enough to achieve the MDGs target of 75 percent, or 16 million lives, by 2015. Also at the Clinton Global Initiative, the other Clinton – Secretary of State Hillary Clinton – launched the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, a $50 million initiative to replace primitive cooking stoves powered by wood, coal or dung with what she called “clean, efficient, and affordable stoves and fuels all over the world.”

Ben Stiller and Demi Moore listen to Ashton Kurchtner as he speaks at the CGI 2010: Breakout Session, Democracy and Voice: Technology for Citizen Employment and Human Rights

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Left to right: Arianna Huffington, Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief, The Huffington Post; Mohamed Ibrahim, Chairman, Mo Ibrahim Foundation, Ashton Kutcher, Co-Chair, Demi and Ashton Foundation during the CGI 2010 Breakout Session: Democracy and Voice: Technology for Citizen Employment and Human Rights

Smoke from these stoves kills 1.9 million people, mostly women and children, and the main killers are lung and heart diseases. Indoor pollution creates health and environmental problems, the Secretary said, as well as shedding poor light on the status of women in large parts of the world. “By upgrading these dirty stoves, millions of lives could be saved and improved…That’s what makes it such a good subject for a coordinated approach of governments, aid organizations and the private sector,” she told the New York Times. Morgan Stanley

and Shell were among the backers of the initiative. But even as (among others) the Secretary of State of the United States was pushing cooking stoves, and the future queen consort of the Netherlands was advocating a truly global banking system, and other relief initiatives of every description piled up, some leaders sounded a cautious note on the limitations of aid in solving the problems of developing countries. “There is one thing that we all have to accept,” declared Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, which – not coincidentally – is the world’s third largest aid donor, “is that the primary responsibility for development lies with the governments of the developing countries. It is in their hands whether aid can be effective. Therefore support of good governance is as important as aid itself…Overseas Development Aid funding can, apart from emergency situations, only be a contribution to national resources, never a substitute for them.” In a variation of the same message, President Obama, announced a shift in U.S. aid policy. Henceforth, he said, the U.S. “will seek partners (aid recipients) who want to build their own

Ashley Judd, Board Member, Population Services International, speaking at the CGI 2010 Breakout Session: Securing the Health and Safety of Girls and Women

Tina Brown, Founder and Editor-in-Chief, The Daily Beast; Ashley Judd, Board Member, Population Services International; Gary Cohen, Executive Vice President, BD

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capacity to provide for their people.” What was needed was to “create conditions where assistance is no longer needed.” The reality is that contrary to popular belief, U.S. aid is lower as a share of GDP (0.12 percent) than, say Germany (0.4 percent), and way below the Scandinavian countries. In one discussion at the Clinton Global Initiative, Clinton told Bill Gates, “Whenever you ask most Americans what portion they think the government spends on foreign aid, people will say 10 percent, 15 percent. I can say as someone who had to fight against cuts, getting 5 percent to go toward development outside of this country would be considered a lot.” In fact, foreign aid accounts for 1 percent of the U.S. budget.

Maria Bartiromo, Clinton Global Citizen Awards

Left to right: Jenna Bush Hager, Contributing Correspondent, NBC News; Jack Ma, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Alibaba Group; Laura Bush, Former First Lady of the United States at the CGI 2010 Plenary: Harnessing Human Potential

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What was needed was to “create conditions where assistance is no longer needed.�

Left to right: Clive Thompson, Contributing Writer, Wired and New York Times Magazine; John W. Stanton, Chairman, Trilogy International Partners LLC at the CGI 2010 Breakout Session - Mobile Revolution: Transforming Access, Markets and Development

Sanjay Gupta, Chief Medical Correspondent, CNN, speaking at the CGI 2010 Special Session: Cancer

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Left to right: Jim Carrey, Actor and Founder, Better U Foundation; Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture; David Griswold, Founder and President, Sustainable Harvest Coffee Importers; Safira Gerald Lazaro Gwimo, Coffee Quality Control Manager, Kanyovu Coffee Cooperative at the 2010 Special Session, Agriculture: Building Partnerships to Empower the World’s Smallholder Farmers Left to right: Hal Hamilton, Co-Director, Sustainable Food Lab; Jim Carrey, Actor and Founder, Better U Foundation; Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture at the 2010 Special Session, Agriculture: Building Partnerships to Empower the World’s Smallholder Farmers

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Left to right: Mohammad Kilany, Co-Founder, Souktel Mobile Phone Job Service; Cherie Blair, Founder, Cherie Blair Foundation for Women at the CGI 2010 Breakout Session - Mobile Revolution: Transforming Access, Markets and Development

Jack Dorsey, Chief Executive Officer, Co-Founder and Chairman, Twitter at the Breakout Session - Mobile Revolution: Transforming Access, Markets and Development

Bill Gates, Co-Chair and Trustee, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and President Bill Clinton, Founding Chairman, Clinton Global Initiative

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H ome to Princes, Presidents and New Yorkers alike. 43


Left to right: Former President Clinton, HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Kingdom of Bahrain and Salam Fayyad, Prime Minister of the Palestinian National Authority at the CGI 2010 Special Session: Middle East

In total, more than 1,900 commitments have been made, worth $63 billion, and they have improved the lives of nearly 300 million people. 44

Left to right: Salam Fayyad, Prime Minister of the Palestinian National Authority and Shimon Peres, President of the State of Israel at the Clinton Global Initiative 2010 Annual Meeting – Special Session: Middle East

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Left to right: President Bill Clinton; Madeleine K. Albright, Chair, Albright Stonebridge Group at the CGI 2010 Plenary: Strengthening Market-Based Solutions

Left to right: Felicia Knaul, Director, Harvard Global Equity Initiative, Founder, C谩ncer de Mama: T贸matelo a Pecho and Lance Armstrong, Founder and Chairman, LIVESTRONG

Lance Armstrong speaking at the CGI 2010 Special Session: Cancer

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Left to right: Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Kingdom of Bahrain; Salam Fayyad, Prime Minister of the Palestinian National Authority and Shimon Peres, President of the State of Israel at the Clinton Global Initiative 2010 Annual Meeting – Special Session: Middle East

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Left to right: Former President Clinton and New York Mayor Bloomberg speaking at the CGI 2010 Plenary: Human Potential

Michelle Obama, First Lady of the United States speaking at the CGI 2010 Closing Plenary

Clinton Global Initiative members commit to tackle the problems of the developing world.

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AMERICA’S northern exposure SUPPLYING U.S. TROOPS:

President Barack Obama meets with his National Security team on Afghanistan and Pakistan in the Situation Room of the White House, October, 2010. 48

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As the United States and its allies continue to ratchet up their troop deployment in landlocked Afghanistan, the logistical scope of resupplying them is immense.

By Roland Flamini

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

Latvian Embassy website carries a report by a leading Washington think tank with the title “The Northern Distribution Network and Afghanistan.” It describes a lifeline that has become crucial for U.S. and other NATO troops on the Afghan front – a much needed alternative supply route to the Taliban-plagued Pakistan corridor. A lifeline that, besides Latvia, relies primarily on the cooperation of Russia, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, tying each of them more closely to the United States. The original Afghan supply route – and still the main delivery channel – started at the Indian Ocean port of Karachi where goods are loaded onto trucks. However, the 1,200 miles of mainly mountainous route over the historic Khyber Pass has become increasingly the target of insurgent attacks, prompting the Allies to look for safer methods of delivery. Keeping the troops supplied by air was ruled out as both impractical and prohibitively expensive. As General Duncan J. McNabb who heads the U.S. Transportation Command told the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on provisioning the Afghan war, “If we had to send everything by air, you would see a Berlin airlift.” The general was referring to the 1948 Soviet blockade of Berlin, when for 11 months U.S. and British planes made 270,000 flights to keep the city supplied. As for the cost, NATO estimates that the cost of airlifting supplies to Afghanistan is $14,000 per ton. The Northern Distribution Network (NDN) was the only other land option, with Riga’s large all-weather Baltic harbor as the receiving point. Here container ships from the United States, Germany and elsewhere offload their cargo onto Russian Baltika-Transit freight trains of the state-run rail system.

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Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

The train’s main route – there are variations – is south across Russia, then southeast around the Caspian Sea through Kazakhstan, and finally south through Uzbekistan until they reach the Termez-Heyrath border crossing with Afghanistan. Because the Afghan railway network consists of nothing more than a few kilometers of track inside the country, the containers are loaded onto trucks to complete their journey by road. By the end of the year, NATO planners hope to be moving 9,000 twenty-foot containers a year on the Northern Distribution Network, including millions of liters of gasoline, thousands of liters of bottled water, food, the comforts of home right down to toothbrushes, plus equipment and construction materials. But with an international force of almost 100,000 troops in Afghanistan, that’s only about 30 percent of the volume needed. So the dangerous Pakistan supply corridor also will continue to be used despite the fact that in 2009 attackers destroyed more

President Barack Obama and President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan finish up a bi-lateral meeting at the NATO Summit in Lisbon, Portugal, November, 2010.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

ernments; and the NDN leaves a trail of money across Central Asia as each participating country demands its due in customs charges and other help. In Tajikistan, for example, the U.S. underwrote the construction of the “Bridge of Friendship” across the Panj River at Nizhny Pyanzh for use by the supply convoys. The new bridge was opened earlier this year. As a result, higher resupplying costs are a major reason why, according to Pentagon budget numbers prepared for the U.S. Congress, the cost per American serviceman in Afghanistan is roughly double what it has been in the Iraq war since 2005. In fiscal year 2010, the Afghan war cost Washington $105 billion. The first trainload of American goods crossed Russia into Kazakhstan in March 2009. Originally, the Russians insisted that only “non-lethal” goods could be transported across the country. But at the NATO summit in Lisbon in November, Moscow agreed to permit armored vehicles to be included in the Transit Agreement.

President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev ride together in the Presidential Sedan while enroute to a luncheon meeting during President Medvedev’s visit to Washington in June, 2010.

than 500 tankers and trailers and killed more than 80 drivers – and pressure from militants forced the Pakistan government to halt the supply convoys on eight separate occasions, most recently in September. One obstacle in the way of transferring more goods to the new route through Central Asia is that the transit infrastructure in use was built more than 20 years ago by the Soviet Union as the principal artery for its forces during the war in Afghanistan in the 1980s. In short, the railway route that once supplied Russian troops in Afghanistan during the disastrous Soviet occupation of that country has been revived – as a lifeline for American and NATO troops. The NDN Transit Agreement is actually held together by a complex patchwork of bi-lateral accords with a half dozen gov50

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Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

President Barack Obama walks with Russian President Dimitry Medvedev, left, and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, right, at the NATO Summit in Lisbon, Portugal, November, 2010.


drug control agents joined American

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

In October, Russian

counterparts in a joint raid on four heroin laboratories inside Afghanistan, where they seized $55.9 million worth of heroin. President Barack Obama meets with Afghan President Hamid Karzai at the Presidential Palace in Kabul, Afghanistan, March, 2010.

Otherwise, “lethal” military supplies are covered by a separate deal signed by President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev in July 2009 allowing the U.S. to use Russian air space. This historic accord permits up to 4,500 U.S. military flights a year over a large swath of what was once enemy territory. It wasn’t until October 7, 2009, that a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III aircraft flew into Afghanistan via the Russian air corridor. Since then, the Air Force has made over 400 such flights over Russia ferrying weapons, ammo and service personnel to Afghanistan. The Northern Distribution Network and the overflying agreement that goes with it are a rarely spoken of, but important reason for re-setting U.S.-Russian relations. The situation is made more complex by the need to ensure the continued cooperation of other governments along the delivery route with whom past relations have sometimes been strained. Latvia is the only nation in the arrangement that is a member of NATO, and therefore officially a U.S. ally. “Riga’s participation in the network is an important contribution to Washington’s re-set policy toward Russia,” the Latvian ambassador to Washington, Andres Pildegovics said recently. Arguably, the transit deals give Moscow leverage over Washington – if ever it wants to use it. This concern may be genuine, but NDN is still the lesser of two evils. The critics of the viability of the new northern routes underestimate the vulnerability of reliance on Pakistan. In an attempt to reassure congressmen about Russian intentions, Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Philip

Gordon told the House Armed Forces Committee in July of last year, “Russia shares a very strong interest in a stable and peaceful Afghanistan. Russia, like the United States, has an interest in stemming Islamic extremism, which emanated from Afghanistan, and struck this country so tragically.” But the Russians have set certain conditions for their cooperation, at least one of which has not been officially disclosed. Moscow wants NATO to put more effort into fighting the Afghan opium trade. A lot of the drug ends up on the Russian streets. In October, Russian drug control agents joined American counterparts in a joint raid on four heroin laboratories inside Afghanistan, where they seized $55.9 million worth of heroin. The reappearance of the Russians in Afghanistan stirred memories of the occupation among Afghans, and the government of Hamid Karzai protested. But despite Afghan objections more such operations involving Russians are expected as part of the NDN agreement. Some also see in the development of the northern supply route a potential danger of widening the conflict. And there is something to this concern: when it comes to security risks there are enough indigenous radical Islamist movements in the Central Asian region to make the NDN a mirror image of the Pakistan route. Organizations such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), once the most lethal militant group in the region, the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM), the Islamic Jihad Union, and the Islamic Movement of Tajikistan are known to have relationships with the Taliban and al-Qaida, ensconced in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Area. It

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Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

President Barack Obama waves to U.S. troops at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, December 3, 2010.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

doesn’t stretch the imagination to see these connections being used to attack the NDN. Meanwhile, mounting resupply costs have led the Obama administration to the realization that Uzbek chickens, too, lay eggs, and Tagik pigs can become bacon. It required an act of Congress – actually, an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act – for the Pentagon to be allowed to purchase the GIs’ breakfast locally, but the Central Asia local purchasing program is now up and running, at a considerable saving in time and money to the American government. “We save money on shipping, while local economies benefit from increased trade,” David Sedney, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense told Congress. “The local purchasing program also demonstrates a potential benefit that the NDN holds for Central Asia – the ability to reconnect the region to the global economy. By expanding trade linkages the NDN helps reconnect Central Asia to India, Pakistan, and other formerly closed markets, while opening a direct land route from the heart of Asia to the heart of Europe. For instance, the most direct route from Lahore to Berlin cuts directly across Afghanistan and Central Asia.” U.S. officials talk enthusiastically of creating a “New Silk Road,” from the Orient. That is, once Afghanistan has a railway and good roads to play its part.

President Barack Obama greets U.S. troops at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, December 3, 2010. Both above photos were taken during the President’s overnight visit to troops in Afghanistan.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

President Barack Obama talks with General David Petraeus, the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, before holding a bilateral meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai during the NATO Summit, November, 2010.

www.defence.pk

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Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

Barrister and wife of Tony Blair, Cherie Blair

As He Remembers It:

TONY BLAIR’S AUTOBIOGRAPHY

HIS THOUGHTS REVEALED

In America, Tony Blair enjoys rock star popularity. He is the leader who didn’t think twice about standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the United States in two successive conflicts. Whether or not we supported the wars in Afghanistan and in Iraq we fell under the spell of his charisma; we admired his powers of persuasion and his advocacy in making the case on behalf of the Bush administration – which was not nearly as skillful at making its own case. 54

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By Roland Flamini

his native Britain, however, it’s a somewhat different story. By the time he stepped down as Labour prime minister half way through his third term he was a controversial figure. Widespread opposition to the Iraq war had scarred his reputation. The English didn’t warm to his being a spokesman for what was perceived as someone else’s war. What Americans saw as his charm and verbal fluency, on the other side of the Pond often seemed more like glibness and a refusal to accept that the Washington neo-cons had tricked him with dodgy – not to say phony – intelligence into supporting their Iraqi misadventure. Why then did his recently published autobiography, Tony Blair: A Journey, sell 92,060 copies in its first four days on sale in the United Kingdom -- amazing numbers for an ex-prime minister who is supposed to be more popular outside his own country than in it. British media, which have had very little good to say about Blair’s book, credit its fast-out-of-the-gate

success to a clever launch campaign by the publisher, Random House. For example, prior to publication, different short extracts from the book were sent to selected newspapers as appetizers, ranging from his love for his wife Cherie (“I needed that love Cherie gave me, selfishly,” he writes. “I devoured it to give me strength. I was an animal following my instinct…” Yikes!) to his long, often bitter feud with his political rival and eventual successor Gordon Brown. In addition, Blair himself was all over the television and radio, promoting the book. But the truth is that, like him or not, the nation was, and remains fascinated with the politician who turned himself into Britain’s first celebrity prime minister. Blair, said the London Times, “redefined the role of prime minister for an age in which the lines between the political and the personal were themselves being redefined.” When he was first elected in 1997, he was 43 and the youngest prime minister in two centuries. While in office, he was portrayed in four films: as himself in The Deal, The

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President Barack Obama holds a working dinner with, clockwise from left, King Abdullah II of Jordan; Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel; President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority; Tony Blair; the international Middle East envoy and former British Prime Minister and President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt in the Old Family Dining Room of the White House, September 1, 2010. 56

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Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

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Queen, and The Special Relationship, and (thinly disguised) in The Ghost Writer. While in office, his personal life seemed more visible than that of his predecessors. In 2000, his wife gave birth to a son, Leo, the first child to be born to a serving prime minister in more than 150 years. Within weeks of settling into 10 Downing Street he captured public attention with his halting, emotionally charged “People’s princess” eulogy for Princess Diana on the morning of her death. So it should come as no surprise that the style of A Journey, which Blair wrote himself in longhand, is far removed from the elder statesman grandness the British expect in the memoirs of their senior politicians. Out of its 700-plus pages shines the qualified sincerity – no political autobiography is totally candid, and this one certainly isn’t – of a man who has retained a sense of wonder at having reached the top of the heap of British politics, and stayed there for so long. The Princess of Wales arriving at the German Embassy in London for a banquet to mark the visit or the German President, July 1986. She is wearing a strapless evening gown designed by the Emanuels. Princess Diana wearing a Victor Edelstein evening dress to a performance of the opera “Salome,” Tokyo, November 1990.

© Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images

© Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images

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The critical consensus is that the book is a very good read, but its author remains complex and even contradictory. Political commentator Andrew Rawsley, reviewing the book in “The Guardian,” sums up the Tony Blair of “A Journey” like this: “Important and infuriating, trite and profound, cynical but also optimistic, world weary and yet often quite naïve, racked with anxieties about some things and evangelical in his certitudes about others, intellectually lazy and confused about many issues but more often than not utterly clear-sighted when it comes to the big ones. When he says the world is a place of contradictions (he)…is really talking about himself.” In the book Blair remains utterly convinced of the rightness of the Iraq war, marshalling evidence to bolster his argument. He is equally uncompromising about Iran. If the ayatollahs developed a nuclear bomb “it would dramatically alter the balance of power” not only in the Middle East, but “within Islam.” Blair told Charlie Rose in a recent interview that a nuclear Iran “is a risk not worth running…if sanctions and diplomacy fail the military option should not be off the table.” Blair treats with respect former President George W. Bush with whom he developed a strong relationship. The notion of Bush as a “dumb idiot” who accidentally became president was wrong, he writes. “George had an immense simplicity in how he saw the world. Right or wrong, it led to decisive leadership.” He includes a friendly nod in Barack Obama’s direction, but his real hero in U.S. politics is Bill Clinton. “We were political soulmates” Blair says of Clinton. “He was the most formidable politician I had ever encountered…as a political class act, I deferred to the master. He had it all.” He even explains Clinton’s widely publicized issues with women as the former president’s “interest in and curiosity about people. In respect of men, it was expressed in friendship; in respect of women, there was potentially a sexual element.” The death of Princess Diana in a Paris car crash with her Egyptian playboy boy friend Dodi Fayed was an early defining moment for Blair. He confirms what we all know from The Queen, that his was a key role in orchestrating the princess’s national funeral. In reality, the royals were not nearly as resistant as the movie makes out, but it took nerve for a fledgling prime

The death of Princess Diana in a Paris car crash with her Egyptian playboy-boy friend Dodi Fayed was an early defining moment for Blair.

© Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images

The Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997) wears a white Catherine Walker dress embroidered with pearls to a formal dinner in Budapest, May 1990. She accessorises it with a pearl and sapphire choker.

minister to lay it all out for the formidable Queen Elizabeth II: she would be courting widespread public resentment, potentially damaging to the monarchy, if she insisted on treating the princess’s death as a private family matter. The queen, he argued, needed to acknowledge Diana’s enormous popularity and arrange a public funeral. Yet before her death, he had been wary of the princess, and in his book calls her “an unpredictable meteor.” In one of his moments of frankness, he admits that princess and prime minister shared a common trait: they were both “manipulative people.” Shortly before Diana died, he had tried to warn her that her relationship with Fayed “was a problem.” Reports that the divorced princess planned to marry Dodi, a Muslim, had drawn public criticism. But Diana, Blair says, resented his interference: “I could feel the willful side of her bridling.” For the English, the narrative of his complicated relationship with Gordon Brown (“maddening,” “zero emotional intelligence”) is central to the book, though it contains nothing new. As the politically driven, rising stars of the Labour Party the

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two of them start off as the best of friends, but an unexpected vacancy caused by the death of the party leader turns them into the best of enemies. Blair won the battle for the leadership, Brown the number two spot as chancellor of the exchequer; their friendship soured into a more or less behind-the-scenes uncivil war, with Brown relentlessly sabotaging the prime minister. By the end, the occupants of Nos 10 and 11 Downing Street (which are actually interconnected) were hardly on speaking terms, a fact which they strongly denied. Now the press has the satisfaction of knowing that it was collectively right all along. Even his critics admit that the book reveals a generous spirit. People Blair seems not to care for get hardly a mention – for example, Sir Christopher Meyer, the former British ambassador to Washington who maintains that Blair privately agreed to support Bush in removing Saddam Hussein three years before the actual 2003 Iraq invasion – something Blair has always denied. But Meyer’s successor, Sir David Manning, finds favor in the book. As Andrew Rawsley writes, “This is not a bitchy memoir.”

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CELEBRITIES MAKING A DIFFERENCE Actress Demi Moore and Actor Ashton Kutcher “Unite” with the UN to Eradicate Human Trafficking

It is an extraordinary breed of celebrity and special, indeed, when a famous Hollywood couple uses their fame for causes that serve the greater global good and are humanitarian in nature. actress Demi Moore and actor Ashton Kutcher, real-life characters, transcend the glamour of any starring role they might portray on the large cinematic screen. Subsequent to participating in the recent Clinton Global Initiative that took place in New York this past September, Ms. Moore and Mr. Kutcher personally stepped up to the world platform of the United Nations with SecretaryGeneral Ban Ki-moon on the fight against Human Trafficking. On November 4, 2010, together they collaborated to launch the UN Voluntary Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons, most especially women and children, as part of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Regardless of what the tabloids say about their relationship, this couple is the personification of “doing the right thing,” when it comes to using their stardom and notoriety to bring universal attention to a cause that will, in effect, save countless lives and substantially reduce the statistical ratio of victims who fall prey to the barbarism, corruption and savagery of Human Trafficking. This crime knows no boundaries in race, creed, gender and age. Every country around the globe is beaconed to give ear and attention to this cause, as all nations are affected in one way or another. It is international in its scope and requires 62

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n a Hum


UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) addresses the launch of the UN Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking, to be managed by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Mr. Ban is joined by Demi Moore, actress and Co-founder of the Demi and Ashton Foundation (DNA) to eliminate child sex slavery and human trafficking; and Ashton Kutcher, actor and Co-founder of DNA.

UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

Demi Moore, actress and Co-founder of the Demi and Ashton Foundation (DNA) to eliminate child sex slavery and human trafficking, addresses the launch of the UN Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking. A cornerstone of the UN’s new Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons, the Fund will provide humanitarian, legal and financial assistance to victims of the crime, especially women and children, and will be managed by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Ms. Moore is flanked by her husband, actor and Co-founder of DNA, Ashton Kutcher (right), and Nicholas Kristof, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist. DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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UN Photo/John McIlwaine

Ashton Kutcher (left) and wife Demi Moore (second from left), actors and co-founders of the Demi and Ashton Foundation (DNA) to eliminate child sex slavery and human trafficking, are among speakers at a press conference on the new UN Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking. With them is Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the UN Office on Drugs on Crime (UNODC).

political leaders of the world and the influential voice of highly regarded celebrities to come together and collectively work towards eradicating this immeasurable human atrocity. This is one role these Hollywood actors have embraced that is incredibly exemplary and worthy of being emulated. The significance of their participation in this worthy mission is the epitome of what “celebrity” should be defined as.

About The Demi and Ashton Foundation Source: www.DemiandAshton.org Believing that freedom is a basic human right, Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher founded The Demi and Ashton Foundation (DNA) to raise awareness about child sex slavery, change the cultural stereotypes that facilitate this horrific problem, and rehabilitate innocent victims. DNA is a U.S.-based nonprofit organization. More people are slaves today than ever before and the numbers are soaring. Men, women and children are enslaved for many purposes including sex, pornography, forced labor and indentured servitude. Among slaves, children are the most vulnerable and their rights are the least recognized. The global sex slavery market generates $32 billion in profits annually. Two million children are subjected to prostitution in the global commercial sex trade. In just the United States, between 100,000 and 300,000 children are enslaved and sold for sex. The sex slavery industry has become an increasingly important revenue source for organized crime because each young girl can earn between $150,000 and $200,000 each year for her pimp.

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DNA hopes to help abolish modern day slavery, deter perpetrators and free the many innocent and exploited victims. We are committed to forcing sex slavery out of the shadows and into the spotlight. Freedom is a basic human right and slavery is one of the greatest threats to that freedom. No one has the right to enslave another person.

Freedom - It’s in our DNA. If you would like to find out more details about the DNA Foundation and/or make a donation, go to the Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher website at: www.DemiandAshton.org


UN Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) greets Demi Moore, actress and Co-founder of the Demi and Ashton Foundation (DNA) to eliminate child sex slavery and human trafficking, at the launch of the UN’s Trust Fund for Victims of Human Trafficking.

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BIG ISSUES Make the BIG SCREEN

in Times Square As world leaders convened in New York this September for a high-level summit to advance the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), The biggest screen in Times Square played a video on the Millennium Development Goals during the UN Summit in September highlighting that everyone can help to make a difference.

the United Nations Foundation unveiled a highimpact public service announcement about the most critical issues facing the world today.

ending poverty and hunger • improving health of mothers and children fighting preventable diseases • protecting the environment

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By Karin Lornsen

hroughout September a brand-new video about the MDGs aired twelve times every hour on the Toshiba Vision screen in the heart of New York City. During a launch event, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Assistant Administrator and Assistant Secretary-General Sigrid Kaag, and the UN Foundation’s Chief Operating Officer Rick Parnell unveiled the PSA inviting people to get involved to solve global problems - marking the first time that the work of the UN was featured prominently in this iconic space. “The United Nations is grateful to Toshiba for its willingness to provide its Toshiba Vision screen to help raise awareness about the most pressing global challenges in one of the main crossroads of the world,” said UNDP Assistant Administrator Sigrid Kaag. “Only by working together with world leaders, the private sector and individuals, can we make real progress

towards ending poverty and hunger, improving the health of mothers and children, fighting preventable diseases and protecting the environment.” The MDGs are eight goals that all 192 United Nations member-states have agreed to help achieve. They offer a road map to end poverty and its root causes and tackle the biggest problems facing the world today – these include global poverty, women and children’s health, hunger and education. The Review Summit took place September 20 - 24, 2010, marking the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the MDGs, where President Barack Obama and other world leaders, delivered their plan to advance progress in reaching these goals. “The MDGs are a to-do list for the UN, world leaders and citizens alike,” said Rick Parnell of the UN Foundation. “By placing this important message on the big screen in Times Square, we hope everyone will see that they too can help the

Eddie Temistokle of Toshiba, left, Sigrid Kaag, UN Development Programme Assistant Secretary-General, and Rick Parnell, Chief Operating Officer for the United Nations Foundation, hit the play button on the computer to launch Millennium Development Goals videos in New York’s Times Square. The PSAs invite passersby to get involved to solve global problems.

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Singer-songwriter Kelly Rowland took some time out from working on her new album to help the United Nations Foundation premiere a new public service announcement in New York. Kelly got involved so she could spread the message that everyone can pitch in and help combat global poverty.

UN create a better world. We want people to share the urgent call to action in their respective town squares across the U.S. and the world.” Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter-television hostactress Kelly Rowland phoned into the launch, saying, “We all can send the message to world leaders that we care about these goals and want to make a difference.” Rowland joined the call to action by inviting her friends and fans to get involved as well. “You don’t have to be a celebrity or a world leader or a billionaire to make a difference. Everyone can do something today to make sure that women get an education, children are born with health and safety and families can live without the threat of disease.” The 30-second PSA was produced by GOOD in partnership with the UN Foundation and Millennium Promise. It focuses on the eight MDGs: • eradicate extreme poverty and hunger • achieve universal primary education, promote gender equality • empower women • reduce child mortality • improve maternal health • combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases • ensure environmental sustainability • develop a global partnership for development 68

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Three additional PSAs created by the UN Foundation aired on the Toshiba Vision screen, focusing on how individuals can help the UN advance the MDGs by empowering and educating girls, ending preventable childhood diseases and protecting the environment. The Millennium Development Goals are a priority list not only for the United Nations, but for all people with global perspective. But you don’t have to be a world leader or a billionaire to make an impact. Everyone can be part of the solution to make the world a better place. For more information, go to: www.diplomaticconnections.com and click on: www.unfoundation.org


Eddie Temistokle of Toshiba, left, Sigrid Kaag of UNICEF, Rick Parnell of the UN Foundation, Anita Sharma of the UN Millennium Campaign, and Bill Rigler of the Millennium Promise, debut the new video message that aired on the massive dual LED signboard in the heart of New York City.

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PAHO and PAHEF Present

in Inter-American Public Health

Throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, outstanding contributions are being made to advance public health and change the lives of millions of people. The region has made remarkable strides toward improving healthcare access, quality of care and health knowledge to its people. By Ashley Gatewood Pan American Health and Education Foundation

Edward L. Kadunc, president of the Pan American Health and Education Foundation (PAHEF), welcomes guests 70

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“But [our] efforts are most successful when all of us unite to advance health in the region...”

Martial Manti, Sanofi Pasteur; Dr. Gilberto Rios, Director General of Health, Ministry of Public Health, Uruguay; Her Excellency María del Luján Flores, Ambassador of Uruguay to the United States

In a diverse region that encompasses the farthest reaches of the Amazon, tropical islands dotting the Tropic of Cancer, and cosmopolitan cities, the health challenges are as varied as the geography. Despite the difficulties, important victories are made every day to alleviate suffering and help the population live life to the fullest. These accomplishments are made possible by the dedicated work of individuals and organizations surmounting public health obstacles. To recognize their inspiring work, the Pan American Health and Education Foundation (PAHEF) and Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) recently hosted the invitation-only Awards for Excellence in Inter-American Public Health Event. Ambassadors, ministers of health, and top-level executives from some of the world’s largest companies, including PepsiCo, the Coca-Cola Company, Pfizer, Novartis, Sanofi Pasteur, and Kraft Foods, Inc., came together at the historic Organization of American States Building to honor seven awardees from Latin America. HRH Infanta Cristina of Spain was also in attendance to show her support for the important public health work taking place throughout the Americas. The night began with a cocktail reception in the elegant courtyard. Under a century-old tree planted by President William Taft, guests mingled and formed new friendships. Dr. Benjamin Caballero, chair of the PAHEF board of directors, and Dr. Mirta Roses Periago, director of PAHO, presented

each awardee with a statue. Dr. Caballero addressed the audience with a message of how important it is for various sectors to work together to promote health. “We all recognize that improving public health throughout the Western Hemisphere is no small task. In fact, it may seem like an insurmountable ambition at times,” he said. “But [our] efforts are most successful when all of us unite to advance health in the region whether we come from government, organizations, foundations, advocacy groups or private industry.” Dr. Carlos Monteiro of the University of São Paulo in Brazil received the Abraham Horwitz Award for Excellence in Leadership in Inter-American Health in recognition of his outstanding 30-year career in the nutrition field. His studies on the link between poverty and obesity in developing countries have shaped policies and programs around the world. HRH Infanta Cristina of Spain and His Excellency José Miguel Insulza, Secretary General of the Organization of American States

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HRH Infanta Cristina of Spain and Dr. Enrique Paz, UNICEF

Dr. Carlos Monteiro of the University of São Paulo receives the Abraham Horwitz Award for Excellence in Leadership in Inter-American Health from Dr. Benjamin Caballero, chair of the PAHEF board of directors, and Dr. Mirta Roses Periago, director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO)

Dr. Riad Sherif, President V&D, Latin America, Novartis; Sergio Duplan, President Mexico, Novartis; Guillaume LeRoy, VP Latin America, Sanofi Pasteur

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During the awards ceremony, Dr. José Ángel Córdova Villalobos, Secretary of Health of Mexico, presented Dr. Paulina Taboada of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile with the Manuel Velasco Suárez Award for Excellence in Bioethics for her proposal, “Ethical issues related to end-of-life sedation.” The award is funded by the government of Mexico and honors Dr. Manuel Velasco Suárez, who founded the Mexican National Academy of Bioethics and the Autonomous University of Chiapas. Dr. Maria Fátima de Sousa of the University of Brasília in Brazil was presented with the Sérgio Arouca Award for Excellence in Universal Health Care. She has dedicated her career to strengthening Brazil’s public health system. The award was created this year by the Minister of Health of Brazil and PAHEF, in cooperation with PAHO, in honor of Sérgio Arouca, who was instrumental as a legislator and then a public health official in the creation of Brazil’s universal health care system. The Peruvian League against Cancer received the Clarence H. Moore Award for Excellence for Voluntary Service. Headquartered in Lima, the league is a private nonprofit with 18 branches nationwide that served more than 143,000 patients in 2009. Dr. Luisa Zanolli Moreno of the University of São Paulo in Brazil received the Pedro N. Acha Award for Excellence in Veterinary Public Health for her thesis “Molecular epidemiology of Listeria monocytogenes isolated from different sources in Brazil,” which examines a potentially deadly foodborne pathogen. The PAHO Award for Administration was presented to Dr. Elsa Yolanda Palou, chief, Infectious Diseases Services, National Cardio-Pulmonary Institute, Honduras. The PAHO Champion of Health Award was presented to Fernando Javier Sendra of Argentina, who is the creator of the Yo, Matías comic and contributor to a PAHO World Cup campaign promoting breastfeeding. “Each of the awardees has made remarkable contributions that touch the lives of many,” remarked Edward L. Kadunc, president of PAHEF. “We are honored to present these awards to them and have so many prominent members of our hemispheric community join us in the celebration.”

Despite the difficulties, important victories are made every day that alleviate suffering and help the population live life to the fullest.


Rodrigo Calderón, VP of Public Affairs and Communications, Coca-Cola América Latina, and Gail Rodgers, Senior Director of Vaccines, Pfizer Inc. Dr. Maria Fátima de Sousa, Sergio Arouca Awardee; Mariana Zanolli Moreno; Dr. Luisa Zanolli Moreno, Acha Awardee; Dr. Ana Valéria Machado Mendonça Dr. José Ángel Córdova Villalobos, Secretary of Health of Mexico, presents Dr. Paulina Taboada of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile with a medal as part of her prize for winning the Manuel Velasco Suárez Award for Excellence in Bioethics.

Dr. Benjamin Caballero, chair of the PAHEF board of directors and Dr. Mirta Roses Periago, director of PAHO, present the Peruvian League against Cancer with the Clarence H. Moore Award for Excellence for Voluntary Service. Mr. Adolfo Rafael Dammert Ludoweig accepted on the League’s behalf.

Guests mingle in the atrium of the historic Organization of American States (OAS) building

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High Representative Ashton Inaugurates New Delegation Premises in Washington Recently EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton inaugurated the EU Delegation to the United States during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Delegation’s new location.

Left to right: Angelos Pangratis, Deputy Chief of Mission, European Union to the United States; Ambassador Vale de Almeida, Head of Delegation, European Union to the United States; Baroness Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy; Robert Hormats, U.S. Undersecretary of State and Congressman Bill Delahunt 74

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was particularly meaningful as it launched not only a new building, but also a new role for the Delegation and a new representative of the EU in Washington. Head of Delegation João Vale de Almeida presented his credentials to President Barack Obama in August 2010. “When you visit embassies across the world, if you go into the German Embassy or the Finnish Embassy or the Irish Embassy or the British Embassy, you know which country you’re in,” said HR Ashton. “As I stand here with the Ambassadors from the Member States, with Members of the U.S. Congress, with friends and colleagues, with staff who come from all nationalities across Europe, who work together, and those of you in business and in trade, who collaborate with us, this is what Europe is ... and it’s an enormous privilege to be here.” HR Ashton was joined in the ribbon-cutting by Deputy Chief of Mission Angelos Pangratis, Head of Delegation Vale de Almeida, U.S. Undersecretary of State Robert Hormats, and U.S. Representative Bill Delahunt, who serves as a member of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs and as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Europe. When asked his opinion of the Delegation’s new premises, Undersecretary Hormats commented, “It’s a lovely building, but even more importantly, it’s symbolic of the new European Union, the Lisbon Treaty, and the reorganization of the way business is done in Europe.” Thanks to its sustainability, energy and water efficiency, and innovative design, the new Delegation was granted LEED Gold status by the U.S. Green Building Council. The LEED green building rating system recognizes design and construction practices that reduce the negative environmental impacts of buildings and improve occupant health and well-being. DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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Left to right: H.E. Joao de Vallera, Ambassador of Portugal to the U.S.; H.E. Pekka Lintu, Ambassador of Finland to the U.S.; H.E. Mark Miceli-Farrugia, Ambassador of Malta to the U.S..

H.E. Pierre Vimont, Ambassador of France to the U.S.and H.E. Nigel Sheinwald, British Ambassador to the U.S.

Left to right: Congressman Delahunt; H.E. Klaus Scharioth, German Ambassador to the U.S.and H.E. Renee Jones-Bos, Ambassador of The Netherlands to the U.S.

H.E. Vaino Reinart, Ambassador of Estonia to the U.S. and H.E. Jean-Paul Senninger, Ambassador of Luxembourg to the U.S.

H.E. Jan Matthysen, Ambassador of Belgium to the U.S. and H.E. Giulio Terzi, Ambassador of Italy to the U.S. 76

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New Memorial in the City of Monuments By Lieutenant-Colonel Douglas Martin

Canadian Ambassador Gary Doer, Captain (Navy) Richard Bergeron, Canadian Forces Naval Attaché and TV and film celebrity Gary Sinise, make their way to a special luncheon at the Canadian Embassy to celebrate the groundbreaking of the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial scheduled to be completed on November 11th, 2012, in Washington DC, within full view of the Capitol building.

he City of Monuments will soon add another impressive memorial. Unlike most memorials in Washington, DC, that commemorate the life or lives of those who have died, this one will recognise the living, and in particular, the three million American Veterans Disabled for Life.

Inspired by the dream of Lois Pope, Co-Founder and Chairperson of the Disabled Veterans for Life Memorial Foundation, the memorial will be located within full view of the Capitol building and across from the United States Botanical Gardens. After a November 10th ground-breaking ceremony on the memorial’s site, Mrs. Pope led a distinguished group of disabled veterans and scores of special guests to a luncheon at the Canadian Embassy where they were treated to remarks by keynote speaker, Gary Sinise, the Memorial’s National Spokesman. Mr. Sinise opened his comments at the embassy by honouring Canadian veterans disabled for life. “The last time I was here, I had the privilege of spending time with many of our Canadian wounded warriors,” said Mr. Sinise, who came to the embassy in February 2009 to have dinner with 80 American and Canadian disabled for life troops. “Canada is serving and sacrificing so much in this Global War on Terror. We owe them a great debt.”

Mr. Sinise is devoted to the men and women of the United States military. He rarely visits Washington without visiting wounded and injured troops at Walter Reed Army Medical Center or the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. Currently starring in “CSI: New York,” Mr. Sinise earned an Oscar nomination and a Commander’s Award from the Disabled American Veterans for his portrayal of Lt. Dan Taylor in the Academy Award-winning film, “Forrest Gump.” He has travelled extensively around the world and throughout the United States in support of the troops and also performs with his Lt. Dan Band for the USO. He is a recipient of the Presidential Citizens Medal for his service to the nation. As the National Spokesperson for the Memorial, Mr. Sinise emphasized that, “We’re here today to celebrate the groundbreaking of the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial. We’re here to celebrate what will be the first time our nation has established a permanent public tribute to these courageous men and women in perpetuity. We are here to celebrate a memorial that will certainly educate generations, present and future, about the true cost of war. We are here to celebrate the men and women who may be broken in body, but never in spirit.”

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First Lady Michelle Obama, Taylor Swift and the NFL kick-off

LET’S MOVE! Campaign Politics, Celebrity and Sports Unite to Promote “Play 60”

In early September, First Lady Michelle Obama gathered a stage of influential participants to help jump start her fight against childhood obesity at the Brock Elementary School in New Orleans, Louisiana. Taylor Swift poses for a photo during the NFL’s Play 60 campaign to fight childhood obesity on September 8, 2010, in New Orleans, Louisiana, during First Lady Michelle Obama’s launching of “Let’s Move with the NFL.”

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First Lady Michelle Obama gets the football during a drill from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell during the NFL’s Play 60 Campaign to fight childhood obesity at Brock Elementary School on September 8, 2010, in New Orleans, LA. Obama joined NFL Goodell and former NFL Coach Tony Dungy to promote the Play 60 Campaign and the NFL’s newest efforts to support Let’s Move!

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

aylor Swift and former NFL players, Deuce McAllister, Derrick Brooks and Eddie George joined forces with NFL coach Tony Dungy and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s Play 60 and the First Lady’s “Lets Move!” Campaign to exemplify the immeasurable benefits of everyday physical activity. It’s a program for children that promotes the importance of getting 60 minutes worth of physical exercise at least five (5) days a week. Mrs. Obama has made it her personal crusade to educate and encourage our nation’s youth to start exercising again. In an effort to demonstrate by example, the First Lady hit the ground running, literally. Mr. Goodell and Mr. Dungy together with the First Lady played a football scrimmage at Woldenberg Park with great enthusiasm and child-like excitement. Their consolidated objective of trying to bring an unprecedented spotlight on the idea of passing time while playing an interesting, fun sport and simultaneously attaining a level of physical endurance was a success. With technology and entertaining electronic devices for young people to actively engage their minds these days, our children have become increasingly sedentary. More and more children are sitting behind computers and video games than ever before. What this means is we are producing a generation of idleness and inactivity; thus, it’s causing children to become substantially more overweight than in previous generations. And this is essential because as the aging process progresses, the good and bad predispositions developed and maintained in DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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childhood will dictate longevity and quality of life or the lack thereof. Combating living a lackadaisical lifestyle isn’t the only challenge at hand. In conjunction with attempting to create change in an American culture of snacking on junk food loaded with chemicals and drinks where sugar is the first ingredient, Mrs. Obama is teaching about the extensively unfavorable health ramifications of not eating a robust regimen of the right foods. The First Lady’s mission is to diligently advocate gaining a greater understanding of why it’s important to be disciplined in conquering bad dietary habits. The battle to triumph over obesity can be attained only through proper, thorough learning of the value of good nutrition and eating the right foods. The Campaign encourages and emphasizes the necessity of reading the label contents on packages and to eat more fruits and vegetables. It may be idealistic, perhaps, to think that the launching of this project is going to change this nation’s excessive food consumption and our children are going to be outdoors engaged in some rigorous activity on a much more frequent basis. Nevertheless, Mrs. Obama’s endeavors to collectively bring schools,

communities and families together to make a concerted effort nationwide has been successful in playing a significant role in catapulting monumental attention on this topic. And with real discipline and good examples similar to those who participated in this “kick-off,” many youngsters will get a “kick-start” to a new healthy way of living. For more information about First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Lets Move” Campaign, go to: www.letsmove.gov

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell plays on the field during the NFL’s Play 60 Campaign to fight childhood obesity at Brock Elementary School in September in New Orleans, LA.

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

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Chris Graythen/Getty Images

First Lady Michelle Obama plays on the field during the NFL’s Play 60 Campaign to fight childhood obesity at Brock Elementary School on September 8, 2010 in New Orlean, LA. Obama joined NFL Goodell and former NFL Coach Tony Dungy to promote the Play 60 Campaign and the NFL’s newest efforts to support Let’s Move!

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Taylor Swift poses with Deuce McAllister (left); Derrick Brooks (right) and Eddie George (far right) during the NFL’s Play 60 Campaign to fight childhood obesity on September 8, 2010, in New Orleans, LA.

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

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Musician Taylor Swift performs during the 2010 NFL Opening Kickoff presented by EA Sports in Jackson Square on September 9, 2010, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Ethan Miller/Getty Images

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Musician Taylor Swift performs during the 2010 NFL Opening Kickoff presented by EA Sports in Jackson Square on September 9, 2010, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Skip Bolen/WireImage

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20 TH

German Embassy 2,700 Guests Celebrate

Anniversary of German Unity

The Brandenburg Gate, symbol of German reunification, greeted guests at this year’s reception celebrating the Day of German Unity at the residence of German Ambassador Klaus Scharioth on October 1.

Ambassador Scharioth: “This is a very special day for all of us gathered here – Americans, Germans, and friends from around the world.”

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Guest of honor General Jim Jones, second from left; his wife, Diane, left; Dr. Ulrike Scharioth and Ambassador Klaus Scharioth listened as Emily Formica sang both the anthems of the United States and Germany.

General Jim Jones, 22nd U.S. National Security Advisor

This year marks the 20th anniversary of German reunification. On October 3, 1990, East Germany formally acceded to the Federal Republic of Germany, ending four decades of bitter separation. The likeness of the Berlin landmark ushered guests into the fête whose theme was “Germany United@20.” It was a night for remembering a historic milestone, expressing gratitude to allies and looking forward to a future of continued friendship and cooperation. In all, more than 2,700 people joined Ambassador Scharioth and his wife in celebrating the Day of German Unity. The evening’s guest of honor was General Jim Jones, then National Security Advisor to President Barack Obama. General Jones also led the US delegation that attended the national celebration of German Unity in Bremen on October 3.

United States of America.” He continued: “Without you, without the unshakeable support of the American people, we might not have been able to achieve German unity. Thank you for all you have done. We will never forget.” Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle spoke to the crowd via recorded video, also expressing his thanks for the support of the American people for German unification. “Today, united Germany and America are working hand-in-hand in international politics. We share the same ideal of freedom, the goal of peace and security, and the belief in close consultation and cooperation.” General Jones brought greetings from President Barack Obama. “Just as we count Germany as one of America’s closest allies, he considers Chancellor Merkel to be one of his closest partners,” General Jones said.

German-American Friendship

Unity Theme

“Probably every German remembers where he or she was on October 3, 1990,” Ambassador Scharioth said in his remarks. “I shared my exuberant joy with my wife, my three children – our youngest daughter insisted on being on my shoulders throughout the celebrations so that she could also see – and an overflow crowd on the Bonn market square. Unforgettable.” Ambassador Scharioth was involved in some of the meetings leading to unification. “I speak from my own experience when I say: There is no country which made a more decisive contribution than the

Inside the Ambassador’s Residence, an art exhibition with works by artists from the former East Germany and an informational exhibit on the 2+4 Treaty were all part of the “Germany United@20” theme. In the garden, guests could take their turn trying to tear down the Berlin Wall or have their pictures taken for post-cardlike photos featuring the Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag and other German landmarks as backdrops. Guests dined on beloved German specialties like Kassler (pork cutlets), Kartoffelpuffer und Apfelmus (potato pancakes

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Guests entered the reception through this likeness of the Brandenburg Gate.

and apple sauce), Bratwurst, Spanferkel (roasted suckling pig), Rotkohl (red cabbage), Sauerkraut and more.

Thanks to Partners and Sponsors The German Embassy would like to thank its partners and sponsors, without whom this evening would not have been possible. The main partner of the evening was Germany Trade & Invest. Major sponsors were EADS and Volkswagen. Event partners were Allianz, Bayer, Daimler, Deutsche Telekom, DHL and Stihl. Event affiliates were Boehringer Ingelheim, BMW MINI, SAP, and ThyssenKrupp USA. Official suppliers were Apollinaris, Gerolsteiner, Hofbräuhaus, Jägermeister, Lufthansa and The Coca-Cola Company.

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In the Press Department tent, guests could try to knock down the “Berlin Wall” and have their picture taken in front of a German landmark. The garden of the Ambassador’s Residence was transformed into an elegant setting for the reception, which lasted into the night.

(c) Germany.info


he Hay Adams is both a luxurious property as well as an extremely well-known historical site in Washington, D.C. The proximity alone breeds a clientele of influence and is especially distinguished by being one of the most coveted locations in our nation’s capital with the White House, literally, just steps away. It served as the residence for the Obama family previous to their

Right to left: Mr. Hans Bruland, General Manager of The Hay Adams; Ms. Daniela Hedinger, Embassy of Switzerland; Ms. Jocelyn Corderot, European Union Delegation; Ms. Jiraporn Wattanasophorn, Royal Thai Embassy

arrival two years ago and is a splendidly stately property that is often called home for many dignitaries and delegations.

l u x u r i o u s

h i s t o r i c a l

s t a t e l y

The Hay Adams recently invited several highly-esteemed diplomats to enjoy their 5 Star dining experience and it was quickly understood why the Hay Adams is such a remarkable place to dine as well.

Front row from left: Mr. Thomas Wiegel, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany; Ms. Jiraporn Wattanasophorn, Royal Thai Embassy; Ms. Laura Cilano Garcia, The Hay-Adams; Ms. Jocelyn Corderot, European Union Delegation; Ms. Gabriella Hasnan, Embassy of Indonesia Back row from left: Mr. Wararoj Engsombun, Royal Thai Embassy; Ms. Isabelle Poupaert, European Union Delegation; Ms. Daniela Hedinger, Embassy of Switzerland; Ms. Patricia Senelle, Embassy of Belgium; Ms. Tantri Nugroho, Embassy of Indonesia and Sarah Deam, The Hay-Adams

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COS THE

A NAVY MAN

Bill Cosby: Lone Sailor Award Recipient By Meghan Lawson

“How did I want to die?” comedian Bill Cosby asked as he stood before a crowd of more than six hundred people. It was an unusual dilemma to ponder in front of America’s top Navy brass, who had gathered for the U.S. Navy Memorial’s annual Lone Sailor Awards gala on September 15. But the halls of the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. rang with laughter as Cosby – who was one of this year’s three recipients – recalled how he decided to enlist. “Well, I don’t want to be in the mud, and I don’t want to crash,” the legendary entertainer mused. “I’ll join the Navy!” he remembered excitedly. “I can die in nice clean clothing, in the water. That’s it. And I went downtown and I signed up.” Luckily, Cosby never needed to test his hypothesis. Having enlisted in 1956, he spent the next five years caring for injured Korean War veterans as a hospital corpsman at the Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland. At this year’s gala, Cosby joked that he simply joined the Navy to avoid repeating the tenth grade. “I was in high school at age nineteen. Even I recognized that I was beginning to look as old as the janitor,” he recounted. But antics aside, it became clear to the audience that the Navy provided more than just an escape for the bourgeoning performer – and for his fellow honorees. From the silver screen to submarines to the football field, this year’s Lone Sailor Award recipients led three very different lives. While Cosby was getting his start in stand-up at Philadelphia nightclubs, submarine sonar technician Lanier Phillips was 92

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Photos by Christophe Avril of Diplomatic Connections


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Award Recipients Lanier Phillips, Eddie LeBaron and Bill Cosby Lanier Phillips, Bill Cosby and Wayde Rowsell, Mayor of St. Lawrence, Newfoundland

marching with Martin Luther King, Jr. in Alabama. At the same time, Korean War veteran Eddie LeBaron was throwing touchdowns as the starting quarterback for the Washington Redskins. While they were worlds apart, the three veterans maintained the naval values of honor, courage and commitment long after they left the service. For his part, Cosby has fostered a commitment to education through comedy for decades. “We know that he is one of the greatest entertainers in history,” remarked Virginia Ali, owner of Ben’s Chilli Bowl, a D.C. landmark and one of Cosby’s favorite haunts. “We also know that he is a great pioneer, that he has broken racial barriers on television and movie screens,” she told the crowd as she introduced her long-time friend. During his Navy years, Cosby encountered those racial barriers firsthand, often being forced to sit separately from his fellow sailors in restaurants while traveling in the Southern U.S. For the legendary comedian, those experiences resonate even today. In fact, Cosby nearly refused to accept the Lone Sailor Award – which has previously been presented to presidents, senators and professional athletes – before they agreed to consider another Navy veteran and civil rights activist. 94

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“I thought about it, and I said I will accept only if you look into Lanier Phillips,” Cosby told “Diplomatic Connections.” A pioneer in his own right, Phillips set the Navy on a new course by becoming its first African American sonar technician in 1957. Previously, African American sailors had little hope of achieving more than the rank of mess attendant, with racism as rife in the Sea Service as it was in the South. “When I joined in 1941, racism was at its peak. It was no different in the U.S. Navy than it was in Philadelphia or Mississippi,” recounted Phillips as he accepted his own Lone Sailor Award. Desperate to escape the discrimination he experienced at home in Georgia, Phillips decided that the Navy “was the lesser of the two evils.” Less than a year after he signed up, Phillips’ life – and his worldview – were transformed forever when his ship, the USS Truxtun, ran aground off the southern coast of Newfoundland in Canada. As the only black survivor of the shipwreck, the young sailor was shocked when he received the same attention and care as his white counterparts. Without regard to race, they were all nursed back to health by the people of St. Lawrence, one of Newfoundland’s small mining communities.


“When I survived the Truxtun, and But true to form, the entertainer the people in St. Lawrence, Newfoundmanaged to keep the audience land, showed me love and humanity chuckling as he recalled the accom– it was something I’d never experiencplishments of his fellow honorees. “I ed before,” Phillips explained in an just wanted him to get a Purple Heart interview. “They didn’t treat me as a for playing with that team because black man or a white man; they treated hardly anyone blocked,” Cosby joked me as a human being.” as he described LeBaron’s stellar NFL Armed with a new outlook on equal record. Bill Cosby and Rear-Admiral Edward Walker, President and CEO of the opportunity, Phillips returned to the “When I was a kid, I wanted to do U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation Navy determined to bring about change. two things in life: one was to be a marine, and the other was to He now considers this branch of the service a model for Amerbe an all-American football player. Sometimes you get lucky,” ica. “The U.S. Navy is a prototype for the rest of our country to LeBaron himself remarked on stage. follow,” said the retired technician. “When I see black officers It appears that luck had a heavy hand in each of these three and black enlisted men of all ratings, I get goose pimples to lives. Cosby got a break when he was asked to fill in telling know I played a part.” jokes at a coffeehouse; Phillips survived a shipwreck when more For Cosby, there was no question that Phillips’ story needed than a hundred perished; and LeBaron managed to become a to be heard by the wider Navy community. “Because that story, starting quarterback despite being only 5 feet 7 inches tall. combining Newfoundland and combining the truth about good In reality, it was not so much luck, but the naval values of people and what they can do – what good can do to a person – honor, courage and commitment – the criteria for the Lone it’s wonderful,” he explained at the gala. Sailor Award – that helped these veterans lead remarkable lives.

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5.11

SAVE THE DATE Diplomatic Connections is Hosting Another

eception D iplomatA ppreciation R on May 11, 2011 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Washington, D.C.

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Interview with

His Excellency

Dr. christian prosl Ambassador of Austria to the United States Diplomatic Connections was honored to host its bi-annual Trade Reception at the Austrian Embassy on October 13, 2010.

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he event provided a unique opportunity for the diplomatic and business arenas to come together as Austria beautifully showcased its rich cultural heritage and famed alpine grandeur. And while Austria indeed is known around the world for its culture and the arts, from the opera to the Vienna Philharmonic, to its famed composers, there are other areas this European gem excels in. We had the opportunity to ask the Austrian Ambassador to the United States, Dr. Christian Prosl, a few extra questions. Diplomatic Connections: Ambassador Prosl, please tell us something about the location of Austria and its neighbors? Ambassador Prosl: Austria lies in the heart of Europe and in the middle of the European Union. It is a land-locked country and has eight neighboring countries: Germany and the Czech Republic to the North, the Slovak Republic and Hungary to the East, Slovenia and Italy to the South and Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the West. Austria is very often confused with “Australia,” and we like to point out that there are no kangaroos in Austria, but on the other hand, Austria is often mentioned in the U.S. in connection with the musical, “The Sound of Music.” Diplomatic Connections: Could you give us a description of the topographic and climatic conditions of your country? Ambassador Prosl: Of course, two-thirds of Austria’s country is mountainous terrain, so we are a country ideal for skiing. It is therefore understandable that our national anthem is called “Land of Mountains.” Around half of Austria’s land is DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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BMLFUW/Ingrid Gregor

Rasenparterre, baroque lawn pattern at Upper Belvedere Castle, Vienna.

covered by forests, while about 40 percent is used for agriculture. The climate is comparable to the New England states – hot and dry summers and cold and wet winters. This climate offers ideal conditions for the aromatic Austrian wines. Diplomatic Connections: Austria joined the European Union in 1995 – what has changed for your country’s economy? Have there been mostly improvements? What have been the challenges and negative impacts for Austria? Ambassador Prosl: Today, the European Union consists of 27 Member States and 470 million inhabitants. The European Union is not only an economic union, but also a future project for peace and prosperity. Austria’s accession to the European Union in the mid-1990s has brought mostly advantages for our economy and our people. After 15 years of membership in the European Union, the economic figures of Austria speak for themselves: based on per-capita income, Austria is the 6th wealthiest country in the world; our unemployment rate of 5 percent is the second lowest in the European Union; and exports have more than doubled, while direct investments, in fact, tripled. Austria’s accession has not only brought advantages, but also some challenges: the most recent enlargement of the 100

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European Union in 2004 and 2007, with the accession of twelve Eastern European countries, has significantly increased traffic, as Austria is now not only a transit country from North to South, but also from East to West. Diplomatic Connections: A survey of Mercer Consulting rated Vienna, Austria, as the “city in the world with the highest quality of living” two years in a row – what makes Vienna so special? Ambassador Prosl: Vienna, the capital of Austria, has a population of around 1.7 million, but is the smallest of the nine provinces of Austria. Yes indeed, in May 2010, Vienna was named BEST city of the world in terms of “highest living quality.” This is already the second year in a row, respectively the third time after 2005 that Vienna was ranked top notch amongst the more than 220 assessed cities of the world. So Vienna is not only a living space for nearly one fourth of Austria’s population, but has beautiful architecture, offers many cultural opportunities and above all, meets the highest environmental standards. Vienna is not only ecologically a clean city, but above all, very safe. The quality of drinking water in Vienna is the best in the world and Vienna is also the capital of the world with the highest acreage of vineyards; more than 1,500 acres of vineyards exist in Vienna.


Diplomatic Connections: Austria is known to be an environmentally-friendly country. What are the hallmarks of a sustainable Austria? How does Austria address sustainable development? Ambassador Prosl: Environmental policy and sustainable development as a whole have a long history in Austria. The Ministry of Environment was established in 1972 and is considered one of the foremost ministries in Europe dealing with environmental issues. Back then, the central idea was to locally combat any visible environmental problems like water pollution, air pollution or waste. Even though the concept of sustainable development was mentioned for the first time in 1987 in the Brundtland Report (named after the Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlmen Brundtland), “meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs,” The definition of sustainable development in Austria goes beyond the definition of Brundtland. It’s a concept based on three dimensions: an intact environment, economic prosperity and social solidarity. The key is to keep these three dimensions in equilibrium that is, not to sacrifice the environment for the sake of economic policy.

Sustainable development is a key principle in all policies of Austria: from agriculture – Austria has the highest share of environmental-friendly agriculture in the EU - to energy and transport, where we are promoting hybrid and electric cars. In fact, sustainable development in Austria goes back to the 19th century as the forest legislation had stipulated that for every tree logged, at least another tree had to be planted. Doing so, our forest acreage is growing from year to year. Sustainable development also plays an important role in our agricultural policy as Austria has the highest share of organic farms (nearly 20 percent) in the European Union as well as the highest share of organic acreage in Europe. We have no biotechnology, as the majority of Austrian consumers reject genetically-modified organisms and prefer their food to be produced as close to nature as possible. Waste management also plays an important role in Austria, which has also led to ranking us above all member states of the European Union. Austria is number one in the EU in terms of recycling and composting of waste. One third of the waste is used to produce energy and less than 4 percent of the waste goes to landfills. In addition, 16 percent of Austria’s territory is under nature

River scenery

BMLFUW/UBA/Farasin

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BMLFUW

The Schoenbrunn Palmenhaus (Palm House) was designed by F. Segenschmid and opened in 1882 by Emperor Francis Joseph I. It is the largest of its kind on the continent.

View of the “Muschelbrunnen,” Upper Belvedere Castle, Vienna

efficiency. Bridge over creek

BMLFUW/UBA/Groeger

protection. We have six national parks offering secure living space for animals and vegetation. Austria has no nuclear power plants because nuclear energy is not considered a form of sustainable energy in our country. With a 26.6 percent share of renewable energy, Austria is ranked third in the European Union, the highest per-capita share of “green buildings” in the world, and the environmental focus of Austria has created 185,000 “green jobs.” Diplomatic Connections: Climate change affects us all: Have there been effects on Austria and what measures are foreseen in your country?

Ambassador Prosl: Thank you for addressing the issue of climate change, as it is a key policy for the European Union and especially for Austria. The effects on climate change are evident – in Austria, for example, the glaciers are melting. The depletion of our glaciers will have negative impacts on our skiing tourism, which cannot be quantified at this time. The European Union has taken action with its “Climate and Energy Package” of December 2008. Until the year 2020, the European Union has committed itself to: • reduce its greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) of at least 20 percent below 1990 levels; • 20 percent of EU energy consumption must come from renewable sources; and • a 20 percent reduction in primary energy use compared with projected levels must be achieved by improving energy

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BMLFUW/Rita Newman

View of the “Tuxer Alpen,” wooded Alpine mountain pasture in the Tyrolean Alps

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Water reservoir in the mountains, used for electricity production

BMLFUW

For Austria, this decision of European Union means a GHG emissions reduction of 16 percent and the obligation to increase its share on renewable energy to 34 percent. Diplomatic Connections: Are there classical examples you wish to share with us in terms of promoting renewable energy and improving energy efficiency? Ambassador Prosl: A very good example I wish to share with you is the region of Güssing, which has a population of 27,000 and lies in the most eastern province of Austria, called Burgenland. It is the first region in the European Union to produce its total energy demand – electricity, heating, cooling and fuels – from renewable resources within the region. In 1991, Güssing was one of the poorest regions of Austria, some 70% of its employees commuted to other regions for employment. Today, Güssing is 100% energy independent based exclusively on renewable energy, has created 1,000 new jobs as well as an annual turnover of $20 mil. The Federal Ministry of Environment is supporting energy independent regions, has created its own subsidy scheme and 30 comparable regions are emerging in Austria This should be the ideal model for many countries, like the U.S., to follow. Diplomatic Connections: Thank you, Ambassador Prosl.

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D I P L O M A T

A P P R E C I A T I O N

R E C E P T I O N

iplomatic D Connections AT T H E

AUSTRIAN EMBASSY

H.E. Francisco Villagrán de Léon, Ambassador of Guatemala to the United States; Alice Irvin, Director of Press and Information Service at the Austrian Embassy; H. E. Dr. Christian Prosl, Ambassador of Austria to the United States

Alice Irvin, Director of Press and Information Service at the Austrian Embassy; H.E. Francisco Villagrán de Léon, Ambassador of Guatemala to the United States; Andrea Schrammel, Counsellor for Cultural Affairs at the Austrian Embassy

Ronald Mlotek, formerly with U.S. Department of State and H.E. Houda Nonoo, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Bahrain to the United States

Francois Arsenault, independent filmmaker, and Lieutenant-Colonel Douglas Martin, Public Affairs Attaché at the Canadian Embassy

H.E. Dr. Han Duk-soo, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the United States

Maxim Leonidov, Attaché, Vice Consul, Consular Division; Alexander Belousov, Third Secretary; and Artem Tevanyan – all with the Embassy of the Russia

Denis Valentinovich of the Russian Embassy with Mrs. Julia Valentinovich

Batlai Chuluunhuu, First Secretary for Political Affairs; Davaasuren Damdinsuren, Minister Counsellor and DCM – both at the Embassy of Mongolia

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Mary Patton, Director, Association & Government Group of InterContinental Hotels Group with Capt. George Vriniotis, Assistant Public Affairs Attaché, Canadian Embassy

Ayolt de Grotto and Pieten v.d. Beng of the Royal Netherlands Embassy

Kirsten Ste.Marie, Sales Manager of the Willard InterContinental Washington, DC; Nicole McClure, Director of Diplomatic Affairs & Operations of the InterContinental Barclay New York; Adrian Prenkaj and Jetish Jashari of the Embassy of Kosovo

Dr. John Frim, First Secretary for Defense at the Canadian Embassy with Mrs. Monica Frim

Kelvin Williams, Deputy Head of School and Jo O’Grady, teacher - both of the British School of Washington; Christopher Ebell, Counselor of the Office of Science, Technology, and Higher Education, Embassy of Switzerland with Mrs. Jacqui Ebell

Patrick de Smedt, Assistant Defense, Military, Naval and Air Attaché, Embassy of Belgium with Mrs. Regine de Smedt; Commander Doug McDonald, Assistant Naval Attaché, Canadian Embassy with Mrs. Millan McDonald LTC Tomasz Kister, Assistant Defense Attaché, Embassy of Poland with Mrs. Maria Kister Jeff Turner, President of InTouchUSA Wireless Communications with Alongkorn Laow-ngam, Science and Technology Attaché, Royal Thai Embassy

Patrick Stevens, Federal Police Liaison Officer to the USA, Canada, Mexico & Bahamas, Embassy of Belgium; Filip Bogaert, Customs Attaché, Embassy of Belgium; Veronique Vercammen; Liezelotte Deschryuere

State Department Protocol Officer Sherman Wright with Cara Cannonito, Key Account Director, Government Group and Diplomatic Market of InterContinental Hotels Group and Hiam Awad, Diplomatic Connections DIPLOMAT IC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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Tiffany Yates, Program Administrator at the National Institute of Health; Tarik Allagany, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia; Dr. John Frim, First Secretary for Defense at the Canadian Embassy with Mrs. Monica Frim

Veronique Vercammen with Patrick Stevens, Federal Police Liaison Officer to the USA, Canada, Mexico & Bahamas at the Embassy of Belgium; Göran Görtzen, Head of Europol Delegation with the Delegation of the European Union; Mrs. Barbro Görtzen; Tor Burman

R E C E P T I O N

Jo O’Grady, Teacher, and Kelvin Williams, Deputy Head of School both of the British School of Washington

Liliama Marczuk, Marcelo Jaluff and Marian Wincentowicz

Mikaela Joseph with Ola Ulmo, International Development Officer, Royal Norwegian Embassy Mr. and Mrs. Finkenzeller of the Embassy of Germany

Angelika Radlingmayer and Colonel Leo Radlingmayer, Defense Cooperation Attaché, Austrian Embassy; Rob Jackson, Attaché Defense Equipment Commercial, British Embassy; Colonel David Erickson, Defence Cooperation Attaché, Canadian Embassy Amjad Rajeb and Dhiya Ali, both Deputy Commercial Attachés, Embassy of Iraq

Lieutenant Colonel Mark Ewing, Army Staff; Colonel Nigel Brown, Marine Attaché – both with the British Embassy; Ronald Mlotek

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Christina Jutzi, Program Officer for Environment and Energy; Lauren Patch; Genevieve Dompierre, First Secretary for Commercial Policy, Canadian Embassy; Jonathan Sauve, First Secretary and Executive Assistant, Office of the Ambassador


Audrey Wood, Government and Civil Society and Liam Murphy both with the United Nations, Washington, D.C. Nikolay Tyaglo, Second Secretary and Artem Tevanyan – both with the Embassy of Russia

Kerstin Esher, Office of the Ambassador, Embassy of Germany; Mrs. Avril; Sabine Finkenzeller, Office of the Defense Attaché, Embassy of Germany; Maria Rosaria Giangiuli; and Elisa Colicchia, Attaché PCM Office, Embassy of Italy

Joanna Kujat, Assistant to Executive Director of the IMF; Lavinia Ochea, Congressional Liaison Officer at the Embassy of Romania; Gabriel C. Sopanda, Head of Political Section at the Embassy of Romania; Roxana Caprosu; Veronica Scafaru, Congressional Staffer for Representative Nancy Pelosi

Mr. and Mrs. Torbruegge; Carsten Raabe, Assistant to the Defense Attaché, Embassy of Germany with Mrs. Raabe

Liz Kelly and Robin Naysmith, Scottish Government Counsellor, British Embassy

Jack Smith and Meghan Lawson, both with the Canadian Embassy

Right to left: Sameh Safty, Chief of Staff and Political Counselor, Embassy of France; Carla Cannonito, IHG; Michel Schaffhauser, Consul General, Embassy of France

Mrs. Queenie Thompson and Winston Thompson, Ambassador of Fiji to the United States

Sarah Nezanuddin, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia; Dennis Wirtz; Melissa Fett of Senator Pat Roberts’ office; Holly Robbins, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia

Colonel David Erickson, Defence Cooperation Attaché, Canadian Embassy; Hiam Awad, Diplomatic Connections; Captain (Navy) Jaakko Savisaari, Defense, Military, Naval and Air Attaché and Tuula; Commander Doug McDonald, Assistant Naval Attaché, Embassy of Canada; Dawn Parker, Diplomatic Connections

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A P P R E C I A T I O N

Lamiss Al-Tashi, Assistant Media & Public Affairs Officer; Angham Al Shami, Assistant Economic Affairs; Nadia Hashem, Assistant to the Ambassador – all with the Embassy of Yemen; Alice Irvin, Director of Press and Information Service, Austrian Embassy

R E C E P T I O N

Major Ben Proulx, Staff Officer; Chirstina Jutzi, Program Officer for Environment and Energy; Kevin Adams, First Secretary Defense – all with the Canadian Embassy

Pia Ulrikke Dahl, Cultural and Information Officer, Royal Norwegian Embassy; Thomas McCammon, Consultant

Tarik Allagany, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia; Tiffany Yates, NIH; Holly Robbins and Betsy Riley – both with the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia

Anya Lastiri from the Embassy of Mexico with Michele Weston

Nikoletta Nagy, First Secretary of Trade with the European Union Delegation to the United States; Mrs. Doreen Merkel and Dr. Bernard Merkel, Minister Counselor, Head of Food Safety, Health and Consumer Affairs with the EU Delegation Jakub Konysz, Manager, Public Relations with the Center for Association Leadership; Geneviève Dompierre, First Secretary Commercial Policy, Canadian Embassy; Hani Nasser, Second Secretary Public Affairs and Deputy Spokesperson, Canadian Embassy, Daniel Morency, First Secretary Administration and Consul, Canadian Embassy

Michel Schaffhauser, Embassy of France and Rosemarie Edwards, IMF

Isabel Ferreras, Alexandra Martin (wife of LCol Doug Martin), Jack Smith – Canadian Embassy Yusron Ambary, Second Secretary, Embassy of Indonesia; Andrea Schrammel, Counsellor for Cultural Affairs at the Austrian Embassy; Jerome Lee, First Secretary for Information, Embassy of Singapore 108

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Mandih Mfumbaika Musonda, First Secretary for Immigration, Embassy of the Republic of Zambia and Mrs. Enid Musonda


Jeff Turner, InTouch Wireless Communications and Commander Doug McDonald, Assistant Naval Attaché, Embassy of Canada Craig Clayton, Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts and Lamiss Al-Tashi, Assistant Media & Public Affairs Officer, Embassy of Yemen

Shirley Phull, The Fairfax Embassy Row and Moh Alfityan of the Embassy of Iraq Laura and Michael Socha of KDG Advertising and Marketing

Maria Rosaria Giangiuli

Lieutenant-Colonel Doug Martin, Public Affairs Attaché, Canadian Embassy and Fabien Odry, The Peninsula New York

Jacqui Mooney; Lauren Russell of Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson’s Office

Kirsten Ste. Marie, Willard InterContinental Washington, D.C. (far left); Carla Cannonito, InterContinental Hotels Group (far right)

Managing Director Erich Steinbock, The Carlyle and Betsy Riley, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia John Rusinak of Wings Jets and Colonel David Erickson, Defence Cooperation Attaché, Canadian Embassy

Elin Kylvag, Personal Assistant to Norwegian Ambassador Strommen (right) Göran Görtzen, Head of Europol, Delegation of the European Union and Cristina Gospodin, Sofitel Chicago Water Tower (center)

Ms. Laura Cilano Garcia, The Hay-Adams; Raghad Hasan, Embassy of Iraq; Ms. Sarah Deam, The Hay-Adams

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3.9

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eception D iplomatA ppreciation R on March 9, 2011 at the Hay Adams across the street from the White House

in Washington, D.C.

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DIPL OM ATi C

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A U S T R IA N

EMB A SSY

Catering by Helga’s (page 96)

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Flowers by Merrifield Garden Center

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The Turkish Embassy Residence A Washington Landmark with a Rich History

As part of the Turkish Embassy Lecture Series, a lecture by Kim Prothro Williams titled “The Turkish Embassy Residence: A Washington Landmark with a Rich History” took place at the Turkish Embassy Residence in October. he lecture focused on the architectural and social history of the Turkish Embassy Residence on Sheridan Circle, from its construction as one of the city’s most sumptuous private residences to its purchase by the Government of Turkey for use as its first embassy, signaling the rise of Massachusetts Avenue as Embassy Row. The lecture discussed the work of architect George Oakley Totten, Jr. and highlighted how his experiences as an architect in Turkey influenced his work in the city, and in particular the Turkish Embassy. The lecture also identified the first residents of the embassy, especially Ambassador Mehmet Munir Ertegun whose family played an important role in the 1930s in promoting the city’s mostly African-American jazz musicians during a time of segregation and whose son Ahmet Ertegun eventually became the co-founder of Atlantic Records. Kim Prothro Williams is an architectural historian specializing in historic preservation She is currently the National Register Coordinator for the D.C. Historic Preservation Office where she prepares and reviews National Register nominations. Pages 116-118 are photos taken of the interior of the Turkish Embassy Residence.

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Turkish Embassy Residence

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S A U D I N A T I O N A L D AY

Ambassador Al-Jubeir and Jack Moore, Aramco Services H.E. Adel Al-Jubeir, Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. and H.E. IIhom Nematov, Ambassador of Uzbekistan to the U.S. Col Aldabeis; MG Greg Schulmacher; MG ElKeshky

Ambassador Al-Jubeir shaking hands with Craig Clayton, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts Louis Aboud, Aramco Services and Jennifer Walto, Chevron Sherman Wright, Office of Protocol, U.S. Department of State, shaking hands with Ambassador Al-Jubeir

Col Abdulaziz A. Al-Touri, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia H.E. Adel Al-Jubeir, Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. and H.E. Yousef Al-Otaiba, Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to the U.S. BGen Siak Kian Cheng, Embassy of Singapore and Colonel Ken Lindberg, Embassy of Sweden

Fahad S. Al-Hrabi and General Khaled Al-Nabhani, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia Shahla Izadi Rassuli, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia and Michele Giacalone, Embassy of Italy DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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H.E. Adel A. Al – Jubeir, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United States

Above: Iran Panel: Dr. John Duke Anthony; Dr. John Iskander, Chair; Mr. Thomas Delare; Dr. Flynt Leverett; Dr. Kenneth Katzman; Dr. Trita Parsi; Dr. Thomas Mattair Left: HRH Prince Turki Al Faisal Al Sa’ud Opposite Page: Education and Employment Panel; Dr. Mody Alkhalaf (at podium); Admiral Harold Bernsen; Ms. Anne Joyce, Chair; Ms. Magali Rheault; Ms. Maggie Mitchell Salem; Mr. John Moran

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National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations Maps Past Policy Courses and Explores New Directions By James A. Winship, Ph.D. For Diplomatic Connections

W

ith the election of President Obama in 2008, followed by his policy speech focused on fresh beginnings for relations between the United States and the Islamic world given at Cairo University in June 2009, hopes were raised high that new directions in U.S. foreign policy would emerge. In the year that followed, however, disappointments seemed more frequent than successes: while Palestinian-Israeli peace talks were resumed, the emphasis often seemed more focused on process than on results; diplomatic initiatives toward Iran fell flat; the rhetoric of the “war on terrorism” was dropped but negative images of Islam and Muslims were reinforced in American domestic politics; political uncertainty in Iraq and Afghanistan seemed only to strengthen Iran’s hand in Southwest Asia. Against that backdrop, more than 1,000 people gathered for the 19th Annual Arab-U.S. Policymakers Conference convened by the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations and chaired by its President and CEO, Dr. John Duke Anthony. More than fifty speakers contributed to the dialogue over two days of shared ideas, intense conversation, and extensive networking. Individual speakers included current and former ambassadors from the United States and several Arab countries, key U.S. government officials, leading military officers, representatives of several non-governmental

organizations active in the Near East, as well as major business and financial interests engaged in trade between the United States and the Arab world. Panel discussions dealt with the changing situation in Iraq, the challenges posed by Iran’s regional diplomacy, questions of defense cooperation, education and employment as keys to dealing with the Arab world’s fast-growing “youth bulge”, the Palestinian future, unfolding energy supply issues, and business and financial opportunities in the region. A Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award for Peace, Justice, and Multi-Faith Cooperation in the Middle East was presented to Dr. Landrum Bolling, former President of Earlham College and of the Lilly Endowment and now Senior Advisor to Mercy Corps. Dr. Bolling was honored for his decades of effort to nurture personal relationships and diplomatic links between leaders of the United States and leaders of states as well as institutions involved in Middle East regional conflicts, with all their global implications. A second award for “Exemplary Cultural Achievement” was presented to the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies recognizing its role in “deepening the understanding of Arab-Islamic heritage, encouraging creative artistry, promoting intellectual inquiry, bridging cultural tradition and the study of contemporary issues affecting Saudi Arabia, the Arab, and the Islamic worlds, and enhancing dialogue, understanding, and cooperation among civilizations, nations and peoples.” Former U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, former Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, and long-time Foreign Service Officer, Chas. W. Freeman, Jr. keynoted the conference by challenging his audience to focus on “Failed Interventions and What They Teach.” Though policies focused on homeland security and foreign

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intervention may create the illusion of increased security in the short run, he suggested, “It is also a prescription for diminished international prestige and support amidst continuing worsening of our country’s relations with Arabs and Muslims. It neither preserves our liberties nor advances our security.” H.R.H. Prince Turki Al-Faisal Al Sa’ud, former Ambassador to the United States and a member of the Saudi Arabian royal family, candidly observed that while Saudi Arabia and the United States agree on many things – world peace, removing the curse of nuclear weapons, eradicating poverty and disease, 124

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the importance of providing justice for all, there are some times when the two countries disagree on method, style, language, and perception. Even as Saudi Arabia has persuaded the League of Arab States and the more broadly based Organization of the Islamic Community to accept Saudi Arabian King Abdullah’s Peace Initiative, the United States has been largely ineffective in persuading Israel to take concrete steps toward any final agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Saudi Arabia, “while working to overcome the psychological and political difficulties of having fingers


Dr. John Duke Anthony, HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Talal bin Abdulaziz Al Sa’ud, HRH Princess Sora Bint Saud Bin Saad Al Sa’ud, Rend Shakir Sumaida’ie, Patrick Mancino

pointed at it from everywhere,” Prince Turki insisted, “has opposed the rationalization of extremism and sought to guide religious discourse to a middle way.” Challenging pessimism about United States policies in the Arab world, former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, noted that although the U.S. involvement in Iraq encountered serious problems in the early years, it had succeeded in opening the door to a more participatory political process and in nurturing a truly national government that, though delayed for months in its formation,

would be a stable, broad-gauged government, not susceptible to an early vote of no confidence. Pointing to a particular bright spot of accomplishment, General John Allen [USMC], Deputy Commander of U.S. CENTCOM, highlighted the emerging security architecture among the sovereign states in CENTCOM’s area of responsibility, built not on treaty commitments or binding agreements but established by nurturing enduring relationships and underpinned by increasing defense capacity and interoperability among partner states. “The United States,” he reiterated, “will not leave the region.” H.E. Adel Al Jubeir, Ambassador of Saudi Arabia to the United States, reminded the audience that, “The Kingdom’s objective is to seek security and stability for its people and for the region. Saudi Arabia is a status quo power. We have no ambitions beyond our borders. We would like to live in a safe, peaceful, and prosperous neighborhood. Our efforts have been geared to building bridges, not destroying bridges.” He pointed particularly to the efforts Saudi Arabia and the United States have made to institutionalize their relations in such a way as “to build bridges directly between different agencies of our governments so that they can handle problems at a working level rather than have each problem grow and literally grow out of context.” In separate remarks, Gen. James B. Smith, United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, noted that the style of U.S. diplomacy in Saudi Arabia had changed dramatically. No longer are U.S. diplomats limited to one-year, unaccompanied tours of duty in Saudi Arabia: “Families are back.” No longer does American diplomacy take place “behind walls” for security

Photos Left to Right: Ambassador Chas. W. Freeman, Jr.; Ambassador Ryan Crocker and Admiral Harold Bernsen; Mr. Francisco Sanchez, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade and Head of the International Trade Administration; Crowd at evening reception sponsored by the Iraqi Embassy at their Consulate offices; General John Allen [USMC], Deputy Commander United States Central Command; Energy Panel: Randa Fahmy Hudome (Chair), Mr. Jay Pryor, Dr. Herman Franssen, Ms. Rayola Dougher.; Ambassador Sameh Shoukry of Egypt and Ambassador Maen Areikat, Representative of the PLO Mission in Washington, D.C., offered their views on the situation in Palestine.; U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, General James B. Smith, offers reflections on his first year as Ambassador in Riyadh.

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reasons; instead, American diplomats are traveling the length and breadth of the Kingdom. Such are the challenging and controversial views that comprise a policymaker’s conference. But there was still more. There were book sales and author signings, an Arab souq - full of the sights, smells, and purchases of the marketplace, and there was endless, spirited conversation. An evening reception at the Iraqi consulate was entertained by the upbeat message of global citizenship sung and danced by the international voices of “Up with People.” And the power of soft diplomacy aimed at teaching the world’s young people the lessons of literacy, cultural learning, tolerance, and humane values was demonstrated by the presence of the Sesame Street Workshop and its diplomatic star, Grover – of Muppets fame. As a luncheon speaker, Grover noted that literacy is important “because every book we read we learn something new.” The same can be said of these policymakers conferences: they challenge what we think is true and teach us something new. n

Top to Bottom: HRH Prince Turk Al Faisal meets Muppet character – Grover Prince Abdulaziz and Princess Sora meet the representative of Muppet Diplomacy, Grover “Business and Finance” panel – Dr. Hani Findakly (podium); Dr. John Duke Anthony; Ms. Barbara Ferguson, Chair; Ambassador Ford Fraker; Mr. Brad Bourland; Ambassador Shaun Donnelly; Dr. Lama Suleiman. Naval Academy Midshipmen attending evening reception hosted by the Embassy of Iraq at the consulate offices Mr. Joseph Stanik and students from New Era Academy, Baltimore, MD. attend the evening reception hosted by the Embassy of Iraq at its Consulate offices. (L-R) Jazmine Johnson, Jennifer Bryan, Francisco Vazquez-Romero, Jennifer Anderson

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AMERICAN RECEIVES HIGH HONOUR FROM AUSTRALIA

Mention Washington, D.C., in conversation and images of glamorous state dinners, high level meetings or lively press conferences might come to mind.

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By Meghan Lawson

All eyes are on the dignitaries at hand. Rarely is attention paid to the precise skill and special talent of the person behindthe-scenes who facilitates and orchestrates these complex and distinguished affairs. Ensuring such diplomatic events run successfully and seamlessly is no easy feat, and that’s where the expertise, knowledge and experience of a seasoned staff member like Tom Corcoran comes in. Left to right: Mr. Damian Belshaw; H.E. Kim Beazley, Ambassador of Australia to the United States, Mr. Tom Corcoran

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Left to right: Mr. David French, Mr. Edward J Corcoran, Mrs. Janet French, Mrs. Jean Corcoran, Mr. Edward J. Burke III, Mr. Tom Corcoran, Mrs. Geri Burke, Mrs. Kathy Corcoran, Ms. Amanda Burke, Mrs. Ashley Corcoran, Mr. Joseph E Corcoran, Mrs. Michelle Baumstark, Mr. Frank Baumstark

Colonel Jeff Quirk, Commodore Simon Cullen, Commodore Stephen Woodall, Mr. Tom Corcoran, Brigadier Rod West, Air Commodore Gavin Davies

As Manager of the Travel Visits and Liaison section at the Embassy of Australia, Corcoran coordinates visits from Australian parliamentarians and officials to our nation’s capital. Everything from accommodation and travel arrangements to meeting logistics and security motorcades falls under Corcoran’s expansive portfolio. Since joining the embassy staff in 1995, Corcoran has overseen 17 prime ministerial visits and several by Australian Governor-Generals, not to mention more than 230 visits from federal ministers and senior public servants. Corcoran was even called upon by the Prime Minister to provide logistical assistance on the ground at two recent meetings for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). His ability to convert these complex undertakings into a well-oiled machine has not gone unnoticed. At a ceremony at the Australian Embassy on October 15, Corcoran was awarded the Honourary Medal of the Order of Australia. Ambassador Kim Beazley bestowed the rare honour, which recognizes extraordinary achievement and service from individuals of other nationalities. Corcoran, who is an American, now joins the ranks of a select group – fewer than 100 have received honorary medals since the award was first introduced in 1980. Past honorees of the Order of Australia include United States General David Petraeus, former South African President Nelson Mandela and comedian Robin Williams. 130

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Although exceptional, if one considers Corcoran’s track record, this honour comes as little surprise. Before joining the Australian Embassy, he spent 23 years with the U.S. Army, as an Air Defense Artillery Officer rising to the rank Lieutenant Colonel. Such demanding posts certainly prepared Corcoran for the intricate and detailed work of having a full understanding of protocol and its ever-present challenges his current position now demands. In fact, in 2004, Corcoran’s excellence was already being recognized as he was awarded the Australian Medallion for outstanding service to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Receiving the award in acknowledgment for his discrete contribution to Australian-American relations, Corcoran’s Honourary Medal is a sure sign that, no doubt, foreign dignitaries are in safe and secure hands when they visit the city where world leaders and heads of state convene.


Group of esteemed colleagues, friends and family who attended this event to celebrate in Mr. Corcoran’s honor.

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By Karin Lornsen

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ig news in the U.S. global engagement front: At a reception in New York City in November, 2010, it was announced that the United Nations Foundation is entering into a strategic alliance with the United Nations Association of the United States (UNA-USA). This new partnership will collaborate towards building a broad base of citizen support for American multilateral engagement through its 125 chapters and divisions across the U.S. The United Nations Foundation links the UN’s work with others around the world, mobilizing the energy UN Foundation President Senator Tim Wirth, left, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, center, and UN Foundation Founder and Chairman Ted Turner at the Global Leadership Awards dinner in New York.

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More than a decade ago, media mogul Ted Turner announced his historic $1 billion gift which led to the creation of the UN Foundation to support the UN and its causes.

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Ted Turner, Senator John Kerry, Martha Stewart and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, left to right, attending the Global Leadership Awards dinner at the historic Waldorf-Astoria.

and expertise of business and non-governmental organizations so that they can collectively help tackle issues including climate change, children’s health, peace and security and poverty eradication. UNA-USA is a member-based organization that has been around nearly as long as the United Nations itself. And for six decades, it has been rooted in the founding principles of the United Nations: to inform, inspire and mobilize Americans to support the principles and vital work of the United Nations and to strengthen its foundational system. Their educational programs help young people participate in successfully reaching their mutual goals, while the Council of Organizations brings NGOs together, formally connecting them. “There have been no closer partners than the UN Foundation and UNA-USA, working hand-in-hand to strengthen and deepen citizen support for the United Nations,” said UN Foundation President Timothy Wirth during the dinner. “By American Idol creator and producer Simon Fuller, right, receives a Champion for Global Change Award, presented by ESPN’s Rick Reilly, for his efforts in mobilizing Americans to support the vital work of the United Nations. Senator John Kerry, left, accepts the Champion for Global Change Award from UN Foundation Founder Ted Turner in recognition of his long standing commitment to advance UN causes. 134

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formally joining our efforts, making UNA-USA a program of the UN Foundation, we will combine more than 100 UNAUSA chapters around the country with the UN Foundation’s strong and vibrant advocacy network to support UN causes.” The new alliance was officially kicked off during the annual Global Leadership Dinner in New York City. The reception brought together world leaders, policymakers, business leaders and celebrities to highlight the role of the United Nations in the global community. More than a decade ago, Ted Turner announced his historic $1 billion gift which led to the creation of the UN Foundation to support the UN and its causes. “It was the best investment I ever made,” said Turner. “The money has helped the UN to fight disease, empower women and girls, combat climate change and lift people out of poverty around the world.” During the event, the UN Foundation and UNA-USA honored Senator John Kerry, UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé, AMERICAN IDOL creator and producer

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Martha Stewart were special guests at the Global Leadership Awards dinner.

Simon Fuller, and Microsoft for their leadership in advancing UN causes. ESPN’s Rick Reilly served as the Master of Ceremonies for the dinner and UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador Annie Lennox offered a special performance. Honored guests included UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Martha Stewart.

UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador Annie Lennox offered a special performance at the dinner. Annie’s “SING” Campaign raises awareness for AIDS-infected women in southern Africa.

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AMERICAN IDOL winner David Cook (left) and guitarist Neal Tiemann sing the song “Heroes” to students at Biruh Tesfa, a United Nations program supported by the UN Foundation, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Cook traveled with the UN Foundation to raise awareness about the importance of education for girls for a special episode of IDOL GIVES BACK that aired on April 21, 2010.

The UN Foundation was one of the five beneficiaries of IDOL GIVES BACK, the Emmy Award-winning television event and musical celebration that has raised awareness and funds totaling more than $140 million for various U.S. and international charities. As part of the April 21 IDOL GIVES BACK special, the UN Foundation brought IDOL Season 7 Winner David Cook to Ethiopia to see firsthand the Biruh Tesfa (Bright Future) Project, a joint UN Foundation, UNFPA and Population Council initiative to create safe spaces to educate more than 600 out-of-school girls. On April 21, millions of IDOL fans donated close to $45 million to support the UN Foundation and the other selected charities.

AMERICAN IDOL’s Kris Allen traveled to Haiti with the UN Foundation to raise awareness of the country’s continuing needs after the devastating earthquake in January, 2010. Since the Earthquake, the UN has been working hand-in-hand with Haitians to help them build back better.

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The UN Foundation and AMERICAN IDOL also teamed up in February to raise awareness and funds to help the UN help Haiti after the earthquake. AMERICAN IDOL Season 8 winner Kris Allen and UN Foundation CEO Kathy Calvin traveled to Haiti in February to learn first-hand about the country’s continuing needs following the devastating earthquake. During the IDOL results show on February 25, Allen performed The Beatles’ “Let it Be” and shared footage of his trip to an audience of millions. Allen’s performance was available on iTunes, with all proceeds going to help the UN’s recovery efforts. This initiative raised more than $250,000 benefitting the UN’s Central Emergency Fund (CERF) to help provide food, medicine, water and shelter to the Haitian people. n


David Cook learns about the daily life of Mekdes, 7, during his visit to the Biruh Tesfa school for girls in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Through this program, Mekdes has access to essential health check-ups to ensure that she is healthy and growing and protected against disease.

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Celebrating the

Friends of Nyumbani In early October, the 17th annual fundraiser to benefit Nyumbani, a non-profit organization which assists children in Kenya who have been orphaned or abandoned as a result of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, was held in Washington, D.C. By Kerry McKenney

Karen Smith and Former Congressman Jim Bacchus

Congressman Donald Payne and Sister Mary Owens

To learn more about Nyumbani, please go to: www.nyumbani.org

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addition to providing a stable home, medicine and education for the children, Nyumbani is also active in community outreach and village-based elder care. Thanks to the operation of the Nyumbani Diagnostic Laboratory in Nairobi, one of the most sophisticated of its kind in all of Sub-Saharan Africa, local community members have access to testing for health conditions including tuberculosis, malaria, typhoid, hepatitis and others. Approximately 3,000 tests are conducted each month. With help from international volunteers, including many from the U.S., Nyumbani has been a great success story since its founding in 1992 by the late physician and Jesuit priest, Father Angelo D’Agostino. This year’s benefit, whose theme was “Celebrating the Friends of Nyumbani,” grossed over $300,000, and attracted more than 350 guests. Among those in attendance were longtime friends of Nyumbani, including popular humorist Mark Russell; renowned political pundit Mark Shields; Congressman Donald Payne, Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Africa; and Village Sustainability Program Director Joseph Ntunyoi. The emcee for the evening was award-winning former producer, reporter and news anchor Kathleen Matthews, who currently serves as Executive Vice President of Global Communications and Public Affairs at Marriott International. She and husband Chris have visited Nyumbani in Kenya, and their children have volunteered there. Featured speakers included Sister Mary Owens, Executive Director of Nyumbani, who traveled from Kenya for the event, and Dr. Marilyn Jerome, President of the Nyumbani USA Board. A highlight of the evening was a performance by Broad-

Aaron Austin, Nihal Dhillon (who produced a movie about the Nyumbani Village which was shown at the benefit), Dr. Marilyn Jerome (Nyumbani Board President), Ganga Dhillon

Kathleen Matthews was the emcee for the evening.

way star Ernestine Jackson, who entertained the audience with a moving rendition of “I Dream,” a song composed specifically for Nyumbani. Auctioneer John Paul Womble presided over the bidding for a number of items, including art work, furniture, a trip to San Francisco, and a flight to Kenya to visit Nyumbani. There was also a silent auction featuring hundreds of items donated by members of the local business community. Medallion awards were presented to Llyodie Zeiser for her work with KEST (Kenya Educational Service Trips); audiologist Dr. Tomi Browne for her service to the Heart of the Village Program; Susan Gold for her contributions to the Nyumbani Adolescent Program; Lorna MacLeod for her fundraising efforts; and Mark Shields and Mark Russell for their years of entertaining at the benefit. The John and Patty Noel Humanitarian Award, presented for the first time this year, is named after the couple who established the non-profit Make a Mark Foundation, and recognizes outstanding individuals and organizations who are dedicated to fighting poverty, disease and ignorance, and whose accomplishments are consistent with the goals of Nyumbani. It was presented to The Honorable Sandy Thurman, Director of the Interfaith Health Program and the Joseph W. Blount Center for Health and Human Rights at the Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, President of the International AIDS Trust, first U.S. AIDS Czar, and a past member of Nyumbani’s U.S. Board of Directors. Plans are already underway for the 2011 Nyumbani gala, with the organizers hoping to build on this year’s success.

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By Roland Flamini

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n the 1950s, Capitol Hill was a frightening place for movie stars. Senator Joe McCarthy’s hunt for communists and fellow travelers was at its most virulent, and many of Hollywood’s denizens lived in dread of receiving a summons to appear before the senator’s infamous Sub-committee on Investigations. Some were branded as party members and left the Hill with their acting, writing or directing careers in ruins. Some never worked in films again. By going after movie celebrities McCarthy was guaranteed media attention for his campaign.

John Prendergast, George Clooney and Tami Hultman John Prendergast is an author and human rights activist. He is Co-Founder of the Enough Project, an initiative to end genocide and crimes against humanity. Tami Hultman is Co-founder and chief editorial officer of AllAfrica Global Media/AllAfrica.com and Director of the AllAfrica Foundation. AllAfrica Global Media is a multi-media content service provider, systems technology developer and the largest electronic distributor of African news and information worldwide. Photo by Christophe Avril of Diplomatic Connections

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President Barack Obama discusses the situation in Sudan with actor George Clooney during a meeting outside the Oval Office, October 12, 2010.

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George Clooney speaking with a few guests after the CFR discussion in Washington, D.C. in October, 2010.

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t h e

W h i t e

H o u s e .

McCarthy knew what he was doing, and it’s happening again — but for less sinister reasons. Today, there is a procession of celebrities trekking up to the Congress and the Senate as spokespersons for myriad of issues ranging from world poverty to saving dolphins. Some testify before congressional committees; others lobby politicians in their offices; a few even get to the White House. A case in point is film actor George Clooney’s high profile round of top-level meetings in Washington in October following his third visit to Sudan. In reporting the situation, Clooney wants the Obama Administration to ensure that a key referendum scheduled for January is allowed to take place without interference or — worse — a repetition of Sudan’s violent past. “As you know, I’m not a policymaker, cameras tend to follow me where I go, so I figure, let’s bring them all to South Sudan and let them take pictures,” said Clooney, speaking to a dozen hand-picked journalists in Washington after a day of lobbying that included meetings with Senate Democrat John Kerry and Senator


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Abyei hardly strikes a chord with Americans, but Darfur does – thanks largely to Matt Damon (second from right) arrives in a flood-affected village to promote Wyclef Jean’s foundation Yele Haiti aid activities.

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Actress Angelina Jolie is the UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador


George Clooney (centre, back), United Nations Messenger of Peace, in a group photo with children in the El Sheriff Internally Displaced Persons Camp (IDP).

the efforts of celebrities like Clooney.

Dick Lugar (R-Ind.), and a session with President Barack Obama and senior White House staffers. Clooney is a co-founder of “Not on Our Watch” along with Oceans Eleven castmates Don Cheadle, Matt Damon and Brad Pitt. The organization is dedicated to drawing public attention to crises like Darfur and their victims. In January 2008, he became a United Nations Messenger of Peace, honoring his humanitarian work, including a private trip to the region with his father, Nick, in 2006, and the 2007 documentary “Sand and Sorrow,” which followed human rights activists through refugee camps on the SudanChad border. He spoke to the journalists immediately after addressing — with Sudan expert John Prendergast, his guide to the region on this trip — a large meeting of members of the Council on Foreign Relations on the Sudan situation as he saw it. The prestigious think tank announced it has made him a life member (joining Michael Douglas, Matt Damon and Angelina Jolie). “What (the January referendum) is going to require is diplomacy, robust, intricate, complicated diplomacy — but it also has to be done quickly,” he told the journalists. “I think that’s part of the creative diplomacy that has been promised by the administration, but we haven’t seen evidence of it as comprehensively as we would like to. [Regarding Southern Sudan] There’s a lot of good things going on, but there’s many other things - many others stones that have yet to be turned.” On this trip Clooney focused on Abyei, the border area between north and south, which is southern in terms of its ethnicity, but hotly contested because it’s also oil rich. Abyei hardly strikes a chord with Americans, but Darfur does — thanks largely to the efforts of celebrities like George Clooney. They raised public awareness of the war between the north and south of the country that ended in 2005, and the genocide in Darfur since 2003 that resulted in some 300,000 deaths. Now they are trying to ensure that the January referendum does not spark more strife. The vote will determine whether the indigenously African and strongly Christian

Acclaimed actor Michael Douglas is the UN Messenger of Peace and recently met with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) in Mr. Ban’s suite in Los Angeles, California. DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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south will secede from the north, where the population is Muslim and Arabic speaking. But the south has the oil, hence the concern that, left to his own devices, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who has the dubious distinction of being under indictment by the International Court in the Hague for war crimes, will try to prevent the south from gaining its independence. “If we’re going to avoid what we have seen happen twice before with the same players in the North-South and in Darfur, we can’t just sit back and think, well, if we just let this play out, maybe this time it will be better,” Clooney went on. “It’s sort of doubtful with so many things at stake, including oil.” Oil was discovered in Sudan in the 1970s, but didn’t become part of the country’s economy until the 2000s. As a result, the southern People’s Liberation Movement that has morphed into the de facto government has been able to afford to buy weapons, foreshadowing a more even-handed — and bloodier — confrontation than the last one, if the international community fails to avert it. That’s Clooney’s message. “We’re doing everything we can to help, including creating public will and support,”

he said, “to get this out enough to say that the people in this country, the people of the world are watching and aware and know that, if we do nothing there’s a very good chance that hundreds of thousands of people could die — innocent people.” Clooney hinted that his father — a retired journalist — was suspicious of the current trend of showbiz activism, but Clooney knows the effect of his star status on the public: he knows that he can make an impact. Yet it was his father’s skepticism that led to his first trip to Sudan. “I called up my dad and I said, you’ve been so pissed off at this whole idea of celebrity and how it can create focus,” he recalled. “You know, let’s go to Sudan. You be the newsman and I’ll be Liz Taylor. I don’t think of myself as a journalist, and I don’t pretend to be a journalist. My job is to show up where journalists are because cameras follow. And that may feel unfortunate at times, but the truth is it seems to me the best way to spend my celebrity credit card.” He said he realized that getting serious stories published in this celebrity-obsessed age could be difficult. “It’s a very tough time to get news out. I mean “news,” he repeated with an emphatic wiggle of dark eyebrows. “And it’s not just in

I t w a s h i s f a t h e r ’s s k e p t i c i s m t h a t l e d t o C l o o n e y ’s f i r s t t r i p t o S u d a n .

Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro (right) officially designates George Clooney (second from right), a [then] new United Nations Messenger of Peace, as his parents, Nick (left) and Nina Clooney, look on in January, 2008.

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the United States...are we really going to waste all our time talking about Lindsay Lohan in rehab when we could be talking about other things.” Clooney, who embodies both the celebrity gossip that obsesses the media and at the same time the effort to get a serious message across about Sudan, warmed to his subject. “This is not something new, you know? Edward R. Murrow used to have to do stories about Liberace so that he could talk about McCarthy,” he told the small group of journalists. “I mean, this is not like a brand new thing, and everybody here fights the same fight constantly to tell news stories. My father used to talk to me — my father wrote for a newspaper for 25 years before he was an anchorman; he was also a reporter and was a news director. He would try to tell a very important story, and he would get bumped by a Liz Taylor story. He used to talk about it sort of angrily. It becomes increasingly more about marginalizing product than people. So what we’re here to do is just say turn the volume up on this situation. That’s it.” n

Right: A boy in Kutum, North Darfur, Sudan. The town is patrolled by the South African contingent of the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID). Bottom Left to Right: George Clooney (facing camera, right), United Nations Messenger for Peace, walks with the children at the Zam Zam camp of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP). A girl holds an infant at Zam Zam Internally Displaced Persons Camp, in the Darfur region of Sudan. Jane Hall Lute (centre, raised hand), Assistant-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations and Officer-in-Charge of the Department of Field Support, and George Clooney (second to right from Ms. Hall), United Nations Messenger for Peace, meet with representatives of the women living in Zam Zam Internally Displaced Persons Camp (IDP), North Darfur, as members of the United Nations Police foot patrol unit look on. Operation Lifeline Sudan helps about 2.5 million displaced people facing famine in the Sudan. A baby is being given oral rehydration solution by a nurse belonging to Doctors without Borders, a non-governmental organization based in Belgium.

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So what we’re here to do


George Clooney, United Nations Messenger for Peace, alights from a helicopter of the United Nations Organization Mission in Sudan, during his of tour of the UN Peacekeeping Missions in Africa.

is just say turn up the volume on this situation. That’s it.

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at the British Embassy I have fond memories as a girl in the UK of celebrating Diwali, the Festival of Lights celebrated by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains around the world that culminates in the New Year. Dominick Chilcott, Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy and Host; Chaitali Bhaviskar and Suhasini Yash, Dhoonya Dance dance troupe; Jane Chilcott, Hostess and wife to Dominick Chilcott; Arun Singh, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of India. Front row (kneeling): Dominick Chilcott, Deputy Head of Mission, Jane Chilcott and Sangeeta Ahuja, First Secretary British Embassy. Standing: British Embassy guests and staff in traditional attire.

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By Sangeeta Ahuja First Secretary, British Embassy

It was a raucous time with friends, festivities and fireworks, and telephone calls to family far away. And I remember my glee at the abundance of sweets and presents to invite in prosperity. Diwali is, in essence, about the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness, so we had dozens of lights, “diyas” or “Diwas” adorning our house. Energy efficiency was forgotten for one night only, but for the rest of the year, we were reminded to turn off the lights: “It’s not Diwali, is it?!” So you can imagine my delight when our Deputy Ambassador, Dominick Chilcott, decided to host the British Embassy in Washington’s first ever Diwali reception. Nearly 100 people from government, business, NGOs and cultural organisations joined the Embassy in celebrating the Festival. It was a magnificiently colourful evening: my mother would have been proud to see the way the Residence was decked out. Candles and Christmas lights twinkled, staff and guests were dressed in vibrant traditional attire, and floral garlands and scarves adorned doorways and banisters. But this was only the beginning. What made the evening really sparkle for me were the guests with their wide ranging interests and remarkable backgrounds. The timing of our celebration was propitious. President Obama just wrapped up a high profile three-day state visit to India – his longest state visit to date – to invigorate business and trade ties with the world’s largest and growing democracy. We were told by colleagues that the President’s visit echoed the themes of a visit to India by our Prime Minister David Cameron earlier this year. So it’s easy for Britain – as arguably the world’s oldest democracy – to appreciate why the US - the world’s most powerful democracy - is reaching out to India – the world’s largest democracy. The fact that President Obama chose to visit India during Diwali, a holiday to mark renewal and prosperity, is all the more fitting.

Left to right: Suhasini Yash and Chaitali Bhaviskar

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O P T I MISM

DETERMINATIO N

Signs of Progress in Afghanistan Major-General Mike Ward prefers to look on

the bright side– and he’s not afraid to admit it. “My initial bona fide is that I’m an optimist,” declares the former NATO Commander.

Major General Ward and Brigadier General Lawrence Nicholson of the United States Marine Corps tour an Afghan Border Police facility in Nimroz Province, near the Iranian Border. 152

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C ONTRO L

By Meghan Lawson

Afghan National Civil Order Police undergo additional training prior to their initial deployment in Helmand Province.

any military mission, optimism can make or break an effective leader. In Afghanistan, where Maj. Gen. Ward spent the past year as Deputy Commander of NATO’s police training mission, optimism is a means for survival. “A river is built one drop at a time. I think that certainly applies to Afghanistan,” he explains, paraphrasing a proverb he picked up while working with the Afghan National Police (ANP). An avid triathlete and bagpipe player, Maj. Gen. Ward appears composed and determined as he describes the Afghan battleground. “I believe we’re making progress in Afghanistan even against a number of very difficult challenges.” It’s late September, and Maj. Gen. Ward is seated at a table with security and defense policymakers at the Atlantic Council, a think tank in Washington, D.C. Less than a month earlier, the Canadian General was still overseeing training operations stretching from Kabul to Kandahar as NATO’s first Deputy Commander for Police, a position created as part of the organization’s Training Mission for Afghanistan (NTM-A). Now, making a leap from the war room to the board room, he is speaking with various policy bodies in the Capital in an effort to provide a ground-level perspective of NATO’s advancements in the war-scarred nation. Maj. Gen. Ward’s message is one of progress and promise for the nascent Afghan police force. Under his year-long leadership, the ANP grew from 96,000 to 115,000 personnel, no small feat for a force that has gone three decades without formalized training. But such glimmers of progress have been largely overshadowed by a perception that the ANP is still a fledgling organization marred by corruption, drug abuse and a dearth in leadership. While Maj. Gen. Ward concedes these shortcomings – “they haven’t been well trained, and their leadership is not well

prepared,” he tells the Council about the ANP – he also points out that evidence for his optimism is tangible on the ground in Afghanistan. “The Kabul five years ago was dark, it was cold. The water didn’t run. The markets didn’t operate, and there was a fear in the air,” he recollects for the small group of roundtable guests. “The Kabul in 2010, even amid ongoing attacks, is a vibrant city. There are 3,000 taxis in Kabul. Traffic is gridlocked on a scale that would dwarf Washington at rush hour.” According to the General, this new found vitality is thanks in large part to a change in the command structure for the NATO-led mission, implemented in 2009. “The best thing that’s happened for Afghanistan in the last year is the reorganization of ISAF into joint command,” he explains. This restructuring has increased training and mentoring for the police force, rather than funnelling resources primarily to the country’s military arm, the Afghan National Army (ANA). “There’s tremendous potential as NATO comes to the fight more, and I don’t mean the counterinsurgency so much as I mean the training environment,” he assures, signalling the heightened focus international actors are taking on the training facet of the mission. A few days later, Maj. Gen. Ward makes another stop to speak with policymakers, this time at D.C.-based think tank The Heritage Foundation. Over lunch, the General lays out evidence for his mission’s growing momentum. “The army is moving ahead pretty well – it’s growing, it’s improving in quality. The police are beginning to catch up,” he explains. “We’ve reversed a number of significant adverse trends over the past year, whether it was in recruiting, attrition, training, illiteracy,” he reports. “This generation of people that is being trained is really the generation that was lost during the civil war and subsequently

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the Taliban years,” he tells Heritage Foundation staff. The key to bringing them back? Literacy. In a country where the literacy rate hovers around 28 percent, Maj. Gen. Ward sees this marker as essential to the long-term success of the Afghanistan’s security establishment. “Literacy is beginning to pick up in a way which is stimulating both the recruiting and the attrition numbers. But it’s also providing a baseline for a much more moral effect in those forces.” With some 50,000 Afghan forces in literacy training each day – a number that is projected to double by the summer of 2011 – it appears that the former commander finished a tour with his strategy on track. To illustrate this, the General recounts an endearing story of an Afghan police officer who was thrilled that this training allowed him to count his own fingers. But for all the rosy signs, Ward also maintains a pragmatic streak. Progress, he concedes, is subjective. “So many people have been traumatized by various aspects of the past 30 years that they all have very different views of where progress is being made.”

Ward’s list of challenges is just as long as his list of triumphs; fickle political leadership, malign outside influences and an undeveloped rule of law sector top the list. In raw numbers alone, the ANP continues to shoulder a heavy burden. Casualties amongst the police are close to three times those of their ANA counterparts, and four to five times those suffered by coalition forces. “What many people don’t appreciate is that the police really are in a fight 24/7,” he recounts. But the biggest challenge to the mission in Afghanistan is an intangible one: legitimacy. At each stop on his D.C. tour, Maj. Gen. Ward argued that until Afghans have faith in their own country, this experiment in nation building will not succeed. No amount of weapons, classrooms or boots on the ground can fill that void. One piece of the legitimacy puzzle, according to Maj. Gen. Ward, is an effective police force. Another, he assures, is just having a little faith. “I think we will see that in an Afghan timeframe – perhaps not a Washington timeframe – but in an Afghan timeframe, I think we’ll see tremendous signs of change.” Spoken like a true optimist.

An Afghan Border Police officer undergoes validation training for CounterImprovised Explosive Device and Explosive Ordnance Disposal at a military installation in Kabul. This officer and his course mates were among the first ANP to be placed on courses this past year. Major General Ward tours a training facility with one of Afghanistan’s top military leaders, Major General Ahmadzai, as well as Afghanistan’s Deputy Minister for Security, Munir Mangal.

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LATVIA CELEBRATES

PROCLAMATION OF INDEPENDENCE

In early November, Ambassador of Latvia Andrejs Pildegovics and Col. Juris Bezzubovs (Defense, Military, Naval and Air Attaché) hosted a piano concert at the historic and architecturally unique Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress.

H. E. Andrejs Pildegovics, Ambassador of Latvia to the U.S. with Congresswoman Shelley Berkley (D-NV), Chairwoman of the The Transatlantic Legislators’ Dialogue

Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH, co-chairman of the Baltic Caucus) addresses guests at the Library of Congress at Latvia’s National Day concert and celebration on November 18, hosted by Latvia’s Ambassador Andrejs Pildegovics. 156

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celebration of Latvia’s 92nd Anniversary of the Proclamation of Independence and Armed Forces Day was attended by 500 invited guests, representing the Washington diplomatic corps, the Administration, Congress, the business and banking sector, NGOs and Latvians living in the United States. Among the ambassadors attending were Ambassador Sergey Kislyak and Mrs. Natalia Kislyak of the Russian Federation, Ambassador Motsyk and Mrs. Natalia Terletska of Ukraine as well as former U.S. Ambassadors to Latvia. After the singing of the national anthems, led by Latvian folk ensemble Sudrabavots, Ambassador Pildegovics welcomed the guests, expressing the Latvian government’s gratitude for the support of the U.S. government and the American people in keeping Latvia’s flame of freedom alive. “Not so long ago, when Latvia was a captive nation, the Library of Congress served as a prime depositary of Latvian political and historical heritage,” remarked the Ambassador. He continued, “As you may know, a modern National Library building is under construction in our capital city of Riga, symbolizing the importance of our restored nationhood and the revival of our

Shelley Berkley (D-NV), Chairwoman of the Transatlantic Legislators’ Dialogue, also attended to express her congratulations. The brief remarks were followed by a piano concert, performed by Latvia’s 26-year old piano virtuoso Vestards Šimkus, winner of several international piano competitions and an extraordinarily talented Latvian musician, composer and interpreter. He performed pieces by Beethoven, Chopin and Gershwin, as well as by Latvian composers Janis Medins and Peteris Vasks. The final piece, Heartbeats of Astor Piazzolla, was the pianist’s own composition. At the end of the performance, the audience gave the young artist a standing ovation, expressing their awe and appreciation for his captivating performance. Following the concert, guests gathered in the Great Hall, with a spectacular close-up view of the Capitol, for a post-concert reception. Left to right: Mrs. Natalia Kislyak; H.E. Sergey Kislyak, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the U.S.; pianist Vestards Šimkus; H.E. Andrejs Pildegovics, Ambassador of Latvia to the U.S.

Left to right: Spouses of European Ambassdors Mrs. Malgorzata Kopiecka (Poland); Mrs. Cecilie Joergensen Strommen (Norway); Mrs. Louise Akerblom (Luxembourg); Mrs. Agnes Julia Aerts (Belgium); Mrs. Elena Pildegovica (Latvia)

national spirit and values.” (for full text on the Embassy of Latvia go to: www.diplomaticconnections.com and click on: www.latvia-usa.org under embassy listings). Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH, co-chairman of the Baltic Caucus) also addressed the audience, recounting the struggles of the Latvian people in their fight for independence, and the unwavering support of the Americans throughout the decades. Congresswoman DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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World Leaders meet for

President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak during an arrival ceremony at the Blue House in Seoul, South Korea.

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G-20 in Seoul, Korea

By Shaun Waterman he G-20, whose members — 19 nations and the European Union — collectively represent 80 percent of the world’s economy, was originally a forum for finance ministers and central bank heads. Long considered a poor relation to the G-8, it went for nearly a decade before its first heads of government summit, in Vancouver in November 2008. The leaders there were widely credited with agreeing a set of hard-hitting measures that helped stem investor panic and rescue the global financial system from the brink of disaster after the mortgage securities bubble burst. But the sheen of Vancouver has worn duller with each of the succeeding twice yearly summits, and the Seoul gathering was derided by critics as papering over the widening cracks in the global economy, putting off real action on the important issues of trade and currency imbalances, and failing to deliver on the tougher financial regulations promised by its predecessors. The elaborate preparations by national and local government in Seoul may have paid off in the smooth running of the event, but major American news media were pretty much unanimous in presenting the outcome as a disappointment for the Obama administration. And in this case — despite their legendary short attention span for foreign news — they were pretty much correct. U.S. officials had stressed ahead of the summit that they wanted it to address exchange rate manipulation; when countries with export-led economies keep the value of their currency — and thereby the cost of their exports — artificially low. And they named China as the leading country of exports. In the oblique language of international economic summitry, this is referred to as “trade and currency imbalances.” In their communiqué at the end of the summit, the leaders pledged to “move toward” more market-determined exchange rates, and to “pursue the full range of policies conducive to reducing excessive imbalances and maintaining current account imbalances at sustainable levels.” DIPLOMATIC CONNECTIONS B U SINESS Q U A R TE R LY | WINTE R 2 0 1 1

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President Barack Obama puts his shoes back on after an official luncheon with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak at the Blue House in Seoul, South Korea.

But in the fine print, the communiqué effectively kicked the imbalances can down the road — setting what it called “indicative guidelines,” but deferring consideration of any real action on the issue until 2011. President Obama acknowledged that many of his policy objectives for the summit remained unfulfilled. “Instead of hitting home runs, sometimes we’re gonna hit singles, but they’re really important singles,” he told a postsummit press conference — employing the kind of sporting metaphor beloved of American politicians seeking to put a positive spin on unfavorable events. Nonetheless, his failure to garner sufficient support for tougher action on currency imbalances made it all but certain the U.S. Congress will take up the issue. The House of Representatives has already passed a bill imposing sanctions on China for its alleged exchange rate manipulation, and there is little doubt the Senate will follow suit. These allegations of unfair trade competition come at a time of economic anxiety for many Americans, making it politically expedient for lawmakers to address them in as noisy a fashion as possible. Combine that with a chance to paint President Obama as insufficiently tough in defense of U.S. interests on the currency issue and you have a political cocktail irresistible to most Republicans and not a few Democrats, many of whom face 2012 reelection battles in conservative states. But China-baiting aside, when it comes to broader questions of U.S. trade and international economic policy, the political picture looks more complex. With the economy 160

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at the top of the U.S. political agenda, trade becomes a foreign policy issue where the administration can use its position to paint opposition as obstructionist — making it a positive for Democratic strategists. Commentators largely blamed Obama’s failure to garner support for U.S. objectives at Seoul on concern from Asian nations — and Germany, a European giant with an export-led

President Barack Obama walks to the presidential limousine in Seoul, South Korea. U.S. service members listen to President Barack Obama during his visit to Osan Air Base in Osan, South Korea.


economy — about the big injection of capital undertaken just prior to the summit by the Federal Reserve, the U.S. central bank. The $600 billion injection, in the form of a buy-back of U.S. government bonds, was called QEII, because it was a second round of so-called Quantitative Easing, but also in a reference to the famous Cunard transatlantic cruise liner the Queen Elizabeth II, also known by the same acronym.The name did not endear it, even to U.S. allies. The German finance minister expressed his concern for the ineffectiveness of the QEII and Obama was internationally chastised for his discernment (or lack thereof). But more than concern about any one particular policy, what many saw as the U.S. failure at the Seoul summit may have been driven by longer-term shifts. Vancouver succeeded essentially because the North Atlantic countries which host the key centers of the world’s securities and banking markets — the United States, Britain, France and Germany — got behind a series of measures to shore up flailing confidence in the finance markets. The five-point plan the leaders agreed, and the way the organization inherited the mantle of the G-8, helped bolster investor confidence in shaky financial markets and avert a catastrophic collapse in global security prices. By contrast, the issues that had to be addressed at Seoul concerned the real economy — trade imbalances and the price of imports and exports. On such questions, the Atlantic powers are somewhat disjoined and what was hegemonic may be less so now. And the summit’s less than satisfactory conclusion was the result. In retrospect, Britain’s “Guardian” newspaper opined, the G20 summit in Seoul will be seen as the cusp of the Asian century, the moment when the balance of economic power shifted irrevocably eastwards, and Pax Americana isn’t looking as strong as it once did. In other words, if the transition from the G-8 to the larger G-20 represented — in the eyes of America's critics — the dilution of U.S. imperial power, then the confounding of the successor organization may look like the final splintering, proverbial, “nail in the coffin.” One Washington-based diplomat told “Diplomatic Connections” that emerging powers like Brazil and India would likely “step back” from the G-20, focusing more on regional economic forums, where consensus and therefore progress would be easier to achieve. Indeed, it will be interesting to see how the G-20’s role develops, as summits are scaled back to once a year and

President Barack Obama is briefed on North Korea by Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and National Security Advisor Tom Donilon during the Presidential Daily Briefing on the situation on the Korean Peninsula in the Oval Office, November 23, 2010.

President Barack Obama is briefed by members of his national security team in the Situation Room of the White House concerning the Korean Peninsula.

debates continue about whether to create a permanent secretariat for the organization. But within three weeks of the Seoul summit there was a grim reminder of the continuing threats to regional security in Asia — and the need for global leadership to confront them. The North Korean artillery barrage against Yeonpyeong island off South Korea’s West coast November 23 was likely some spasm originating in the byzantine transition process underway in the reclusive communist dictatorship as strongman Kim Jong-Il prepares to transfer power to the third generation of hereditary leadership — his son Kim Jong-un. Madeleine Albright once referred to the United States as “the indispensible nation.” China’s bid for regional leadership on the North Korean issue — convening of an emergency summit for example — is in one sense an effort to show that this is no longer true, at least in East Asia. Seoul has been one of the more reliable U.S. allies in the region for more than half a century. It would be ironic if its name became synonymous with an event that marked an irrevocable downturn in U.S. power. n

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1721 I St. NW, Suite 812 Washington, DC 20006 202.223.3536

4810 Beauregard St., Suite 300 Alexandria, VA 22312 703.750.1099

15% OFF

for DIPLOMATIC & GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES MENTION THIS AD


Look past the monuments and the museums and you’ll find one of the nation’s top hospitals. Located just three miles from the nation’s capitol is another national treasure — Washington Hospital Center. With 1,600 dedicated physicians, the Hospital Center is a leader in the research, diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular and neurological disease, cancer, endocrine disorders, kidney disease, and geriatric and respiratory care. All this plus convenient services like valet parking make a trip into the city well worth your while. For an appointment with an experienced specialist, call our International Services office at (202) 877-2102.

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Washington Hospital Center

State-of-the-Art Health Care

for Washington, D.C., and the World

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Dr. Zayd Eldadah, MD, PhD

C

oming to work at Washington Hospital Center was the best decision Zayd Eldadah, MD,

PhD, ever made. After attending medical school and completing his fellowship at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, he welcomed the opportunity to come to one of the District’s busiest hospitals. Today, he serves as co-director of the electrophysiology labs (EP labs) and is also medical director of the International Services Program at the Hospital Center. 165


Cardiologists, surgeons and interventional radiologists collaborate to diagnose cardiovascular disease and offer the best and least invasive treatment options.

Washington Hospital Center offers the full range of services in every area of adult medicine. In addition, we provide a continuum of care in the cardiovascular, cancer and neuroscience areas.

The familiar blue and yellow MedSTAR helicopters have flown more than 51,000 medical missions in the past 27 years.

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Washington Hospital Center is one of the largest hospitals in the mid-Atlantic region, and is an internationally renowned clinical, teaching and research facility that attracts patients from around the world. The International Program was created to bring culturally sensitive care to patients from other countries who reside in the city as part of the diplomatic corps, as well as those who travel overseas to the Hospital Center for service. In his role as medical director of the International Services Program, Dr. Eldadah is the liaison to diplomatic medical offices and physicians in other countries who are coordinating care for their patients. He is the bridge between the patient’s medical home and the Hospital Center. “Dr. Eldadah knows how to navigate the sometimes complicated cultural and medical differences between the

“Dr. Eldadah knows how to navigate the sometimes complicated cultural and medical differences between the U.S. and other countries.”

The Hospital Center operates one of the busiest cardiac catheterization and electrophysiology programs in the country. Our expertise and new technologies enable us to offer a full array of innovative options to manage complex heart failure patients. The Hospital Center is home to the first Joint Commission certified ventricular assist device (VAD) program in the Washington region.

U.S. and other countries. He can speak physician-to-physician with international health care professionals, and help us provide the best service available to these patients,” said Brian Miller, manager of the International Services Program at the Hospital Center. International relations is an interest for Dr. Eldadah, but his medical specialty is correcting heart rhythm disorders. He explained his role in cardiac health this way. “If the interventional cardiologist is the plumber, then the cardiac electrophysiologist is the electrician. Good heart health requires a steady, normal rhythm. We make use of medical devices and procedures to restore normal heart rhythm to those with rhythm dysfunction.”

Our cardiac surgery program received a top three-star quality designation from the prestigious Society of Thoracic Surgeons. This three-star rating denotes the highest category of quality and is awarded to only about 10 percent of all hospitals nationwide.

Heart rhythm disorders affect all kinds of people, those who are seemingly healthy and those who appear at risk. The condition also affects patients of all ages—from pre-infancy to older adults.

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For the 14th consecutive year, Washington Hospital Center has earned top rankings in heart and heart surgery on U.S.News & World

Report’s prestigious “America’s Best Hospitals” list.

Washington Hospital Center offers a full array of services in every area

The EP Labs at Washington Hospital Center have been in existence for 25 years, but during the past ten years, the labs have experienced extraordinary growth. Among his many accomplishments as co-director, Dr. Eldadah is proud of a gift recently received that will fund the largest single expansion since the inception of the labs. Already, the EP Labs at the Hospital Center are one of the busiest in the nation. Dr. Eldadah is particularly thankful for a recent gift to the hospital that will propel this growth. The grant, from a grateful patient, will fund the largest expansion and renovation since the inception of the labs. The $6 million expansion will increase the capability. “We will continue the steep trajectory of growth in the number

of adult medicine. It is the largest and most experienced tertiary care

“I tell all my patients, ‘It is an honor to treat you.’”

hospital in the Washington, D.C., area. Situated on a 47-acre campus in the heart of the nation’s capital, the Hospital Center has handled the region’s most complicated cases and emergency events for more than 50 years. Washington Hospital Center is a proud member of MedStar Health, a not-for-profit, community-based

of patients we can treat, the quality of care we provide, and the efficiency with which we can deliver this care. The result will be better outcomes and a better patient experience,” the physician reported. It is obvious that Dr. Eldadah is a man who loves his job. Whether working with international patients and their physicians, ensuring safe and effective care that adheres to cultural norms from home, or replacing the batteries in the pacemaker of a patient who is 101 years old, he believes in making a positive difference in the life of the patients he serves. “I tell all my patients, ‘It is an honor to treat you,’” he said.

network of nine hospitals and 20 health related businesses.

For more information on International Services at Washington Hospital Center, call 202-877-2100. 168


Washington Hospital Center has 30 hotel rooms available on its campus to keep family members close. Each room is equipped with a private bath and shower with separate vanity area and cable TV.

Patients may choose to stay in deluxe private suites in a spacious patient unit known as The Pavilion. The Pavilion’s rooms feature fine art, furniture and linens; spacious tiled baths with marble vanities; and many amenities usually found only in luxury hotels.

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Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani (C) raises the World Cup trophy as he stands with his wife Sheikha Moza, their son Sheikh Mohammed, chairman of the Qatar 2022 bid committee (L), and FIFA president Joseph Blatter (R) after Qatar was chosen to host the 2022 World Cup at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich on December 2, 2010. Qatar became the first Arab, Middle Eastern or Muslim country to be awarded the right to stage football’s World Cup.

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Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov (front-R) poses on stage with FIFA president Joseph Blatter (C), Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko (C-L) and other members of the Russia 2018 bid committee including pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva (L) and national football team captain Andrey Arshavin (back-L) after Russia was chosen to host the 2018 World Cup at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich on December 2, 2010.

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Chairman of Qatar’s 2022 Bid Committee Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad Al-Thani (R) and Sheikha Moza bint Nasser Al-Missned stand on the podium filled with emotions of gratitude after the official announcement that Qatar will host the 2022 World Cup on December 2, 2010 at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich, Switzerland.

ou have to be knowledgeable about the Arab world to know anything about Qatar, but that will change in 2022, when the tiny Gulf nation carved out of the desert hosts the planet’s most popular sporting event — the Soccer World Cup. Meanwhile, the 2018 soccer fest, which drew a global television audience of 40 billion in South Africa this year, will be held in Russia — a first for Moscow and Eastern Europe. That decision by the international soccer federation, FIFA, left England disappointed despite its big-guns presentation team that included Prince William and soccer star David Beckham. The Qatar choice dashed United States hopes of hosting the World Cup a second time, but at least it will ensure a flow of good news from the Middle East for a change. Plus, there will be no cliff-hanging stories about Qatar not being ready in time: the richest country in the world (oil and natural gas) will be even richer in 12 years’ time, and well able to afford the promised lavish program of stadiums and infrastructure. n

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Left to right: England 2018 Bid Ambassador David Beckham, Prince William and British Prime Minister David Cameron during a reception in Zurich, Switzerland, a day before the FIFA 2018 and 2022 World Cup Bid Announcement on December 1, 2010, in discussion of hoping to win the bid.


Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, attend the Royal Film Performance and World Premiere of “The Chronicles Of Narnia: The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader” at Odeon Leicester Square on November 30th, 2010 in London, England.

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the Odeon Theater in London’s Leicester Square, the typical buttered popcorn and ticket stubs were replaced by red carpets and crown jewels for the premiere of “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” on December 1, 2010. Celebrities weren’t the only ones receiving the royal treatment at the world premiere of the latest installment in the classic C.S. Lewis children’s series. Amongst the star-studded attendee list was Queen Elizabeth II, who braved the snow to attend along with the Duke of Edinburgh. Her Majesty’s red carpet appearance was a rare one: Queen Elizabeth only attends the movies for the annual Royal Film Performance, with proceeds going towards the Cinema and Television Benevolent Fund. Although she has taken in scores of shows since the tradition began in 1946, this was the first screening for which the Queen donned a pair of 3D glasses. Actor Liam Neeson, who voices the character of Aslan the lion in the film, escorted the Queen to her seat inside the historic Odeon. “I’m told the Queen doesn’t see many movies,” 174

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Neeson told reporters before she arrived. “But they’re coming tonight and that’s pretty special.” Joining Her Majesty for the grandiose occasion was the rest of the film’s cast and crew, including actors Simon Pegg, Ben Barnes, Georgie Henley and Anna Popplewell. Each has reprised their role for the third flick in the fantasy series, which follows the characters on another Homeric journey through the fictional realm of Narnia. Back in 2008, it was doubtful that this third voyage would ever make it to the big screen. The poor box office showing of the second Narnia film led Disney, the franchise’s original production studio, to pull out of financing “The Dawn Treader.” The first and most widely recognized installment in the franchise, “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,” was a box


office smash, pulling in $745 million in ticket sales in 2005. While parallels were quickly drawn to other British children’s works turned screen sensations — namely the hugely successful Harry Potter series — the second Narnia film fizzled in comparison to its predecessor with only $420 million in revenue along with a $200 million budget. With the entire production in jeopardy, Fox filled the void in early 2009, and the film got off the ground, albeit on a more modest budget. Such hardships for “The Dawn Treader” made its royal premiere this December all the more momentous. And if the Queen’s reaction is any indication — she allegedly shed a few tears during one of the film’s more poignant scenes — the movie is sure not to disappoint. n

Left to right: Laura Brent, Georgie Henley, Liam Neeson and Anna Popplewell attend the Royal World Premiere of “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” held at The Odeon Leicester Square on November 30, 2010 in London, England.

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Diplomatic Connections Winter 2011-2012 Issue