Washington and the World

Washington and the World

At the end of it all, I thought that it might be a good idea to let all of my readers know what it is like to be in the most international class I have ever taken, the example is from this past week. Our topic was non-proliferation. First, a little background. After we got done with Model UN, the second half of the class was dedicated to reading articles or listening to radio shows from past and present that we then used to make a short opinion paper. We then got a bit of a lecture to become informed on the gaps our teacher saw in our papers. Among all of these connections being made, he would then have it turn to debate. This was the best part!

 

Hearing the different versions of history from around the world brings perspective to your own arguments. The debate was done in such an open forum that it was more fun than anything else trying to shift through what we had all been told to get to the accuracy of what is going on in our world today. Some examples of this were when the Russian and Chinese students described in their own words how relations between the two countries had soured. Or when the students from India did not argue that the non-proliferation treaty was not unequal. They also disagreed that Vietnam/China was the last war in Asia. They argued it was India/ Pakistan in 1990, which sent ripples through history.


The most chilling part of the conversation was when we got into how the entire time the the Cold War was going on, everyone was thinking about the cost of WWI. Everyone knew the wrong move would turn into catastrophe. This same mentality transferred over to the non-proliferation treaty. I felt there were two moral messages to be learned.

 

The first was as Eisenhower recommended, to think in the shoes of the enemy. The reason they choose to do something is will always be logical if you do not fall into the easy trap of putting a mask over the enemy. Nations do what they do to make themselves more secure. The reason for proliferation is to make people feel secure, and the whole purpose is to create an agreement that is in mutual interest. This is why when the bombs are gotten rid of, it has to be in a way that does not make them more dangerous because the technology is known; the nuclear bomb cannot be eliminated from community knowledge. Rather, there has to be a reason for everyone to not want to know.

 

As our wise teacher said, you can have your principles that you stand for, but as a diplomat you have to look at it and understand the continuing role of sovereignty. With those wise words, we left to reflect further on what role we were going to play in the world. It was a powerful feeling because we had the example of our class to go by. We all want the same thing. It's just a matter of who decides to take action.

 

 

 

Meanwhile this weekend was one of lasts.

 

Last time volunteering at Yoga Noma.

 

Last Sunday Funday at the Smithsonians.

 

 

Stay tuned one more week for the final interview with my fellow peer!

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