Condoleezza Rice speaks on international issues
On October 21, Condoleezza Rice spoke to the students and staff of the International Relations program in Kresge Theatre. Rice, assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, gave a lecture on the role of the college graduate in public service and society. The lecture was sponsored by the International Relations Program.
The program began with an introduction by University President Jared L. Cohon. He spoke of the security challenges posed by September 11 and how Rice has helped the nation comprehend those challenges. ?Carnegie Mellon must be more active in the world as a global institution and must understand and impact international issues,? said Cohon. He then described Carnegie Mellon?s Qatar campus as ?a world class university in the Persian Gulf region ... with the values of an American institution-freedom of expression and equality of opportunity.? He described the students as ?bright, enthusiastic, quick to complain about the workload, and determined to make a difference.... Dr. Rice?s presence here reminds us of our changing role as an international university.?
Rice then took the floor to encourage the audience to get involved in international relations. ?I hope you will be interested life advocates of international relations; the world is so much on us, we influence it and we have to be involved in it.? She exhorted students to explore different areas by taking different classes. ?College is the last time to get broader than narrower,? she said.
During the question and answer session afterwards, one of the issues addressed was on breaking into the selective foreign policy planning committees. Rice encouraged students to participate in local foreign establishment councils such as the Pittsburgh World Affairs Council, attend local conferences, and take advantage of programs such like the International Affairs Fellows program. She stressed the importance of engaging in the outside world on foreign policy.
Rice also addressed interactions of other disciplines with international relations. ?Problems don?t come in neat disciplinary packages,? she warned.
Another issue addressed was the change in foreign policy during the post-Cold War period. Rice said one of the challenges posed after the Cold War the necessity to understand the nature of international threats we face. She said September 11 helped clarify the main threat as a ?radical, extremist ideology of hatred, far more widespread with state sponsors, training camps, and funding - supplanting moderate Islam with radical Islam.? She also mentioned American relations with Palestine and Saudi Arabia. ?We [can] focus change in the broader Middle East as an antidote to the ideology of hatred that grew up there.?
Rice also talked about the war in Iraq and Saddam Hussein. ?We thought he had stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, stockpiles. Instead what he had were a set of capabilities, a set of expertise, a lot of money, and plans to get away from UN sanctions.? She added, ?You can never break the link between Hussein?s administration and weapons of mass destruction; weapons of mass destruction was just as important to his administration as breathing.? Dr. Rice said the U.S. had to replace Saddam?s regime with an ally on the war on terrorism. She described Saddam Hussein as ?the greatest source of instability in the most dangerous region in the world.?
The program ended with a presentation by the University Athletic department. Rice was given a personalized Carnegie Mellon University jersey.
?She was very impressive. She did a good job. She answered our questions and the students gave good questions. It is an honor to have her here,? said Rachelle Emard, a first-year in H&SS.
?What was amazing was how she was able to articulate her views substantially and to analyze issues about [an] interdisciplinary approach ... and her discussion of risk analysis was insightful? said Anand Durvasula, a first-year in H&SS.
Lowell Taylor, a professor of economics and public policy at the Heinz School, described Rice as ?very persuasive in addition to being personal and comfortable in an academic setting.?