World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh
Since 1931

Breakfast Briefing
Converging Interests: India’s ‘Look East’ and America’s ‘Asia Pivot’


October 1, 2014

Join the Council on the heels of Prime Minister Modi’s bilateral talks with President Barack Obama following the UN General Assembly to hear about Modi’s foreign policy priorities from one of India’s most widely respected journalists and public intellectuals.

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Special Seminar and Video Conference
Peace in the Middle East? A German View of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

October 3, 2014

During this special seminar and video conference, students will hear from Ruprecht Polenz, German politician and former Chairman of the German Bundestag’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, about the conflict in the Middle East. He will provide a German point of view on the current situation in Israel and Palestine, and address how a policy towards the region should look and the response needed by the global community.

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The Dr. Henry A. Kissinger Transatlantic Speaker Program of the ACG Pittsburgh Eric M. Warburg Chapter

Public Policy Discussion and Luncheon on the occasion of German Unity Day
Germany’s Role in the World

October 3, 2014

With the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the horizon and German-American relations at a low point over allegations of spying, this is an opportune time to hear from one of Germany’s most distinguished politicians and foreign policy experts. Join the American Council on Germany and the World Affairs Council for a timely discussion on the occasion of German Unity Day!

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Program Calendar

You can view programs by month by using the drop-down menu below.

Ambassador Peter Tomsen Former U.S. Special Envoy to Afghanistan Author of The Wars of Afghanistan: Messianic Terrorism, Tribal Conflicts, and the Failures of Great Powers
Breakfast Briefing
The Afghan Conundrum: The United States and the Continuing Great Game in Central Asia

Ambassador Peter Tomsen
Former U.S. Special Envoy to Afghanistan
Author of The Wars of Afghanistan: Messianic Terrorism, Tribal Conflicts, and the Failures of Great Powers

December 4, 2013

8:00 - 9:30 a.m.

The Rivers Club, 301 Grant St., Pittsburgh

Online registration is closed. If you would like to attend, please contact Melanie Gulasy at 412-281-7055.

This past October marked the twelfth year of U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. For over a decade, the United States and its partners have been embroiled in an ongoing conflict involving all aspects and tactics of counterinsurgency, statecraft, international development, geopolitics, and myriad other complex dynamics. The resistance against the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and its various allies continues to be led by a multi-faceted and often difficult to identify collection of militant organizations, confederated bands of fighters, and the Afghan Taliban. To many. Colloquially-termed the “Graveyard of Empires” by some, Afghanistan soon moves into further transition — complicating what is an already difficult situation for both Afghans and the international community alike.

While the withdrawal of most ISAF forces is slated for December 2014, plenty will be happening before then. National elections are scheduled for April 5. Peace talks with the Afghan Taliban and affiliated groups ebb and flow. Meanwhile, the actual planning and implementation of the drawdown remains a significant undertaking. But what of the future of South and Central Asia post-2014? Is the region on the cusp of yet another “Great Game” — just with different players? Whither Afghans — those who have the most at stake — within this puzzle?

As Afghanistan and its neighbors remain at the nexus of a geopolitical crossroads, what implications will rise to the surface after U.S. forces draw down? Join the Council and a distinguished former American diplomat as we explore lingering issues and new beginnings for Afghanistan.

Ambassador Peter Tomsen spent 33 years serving U.S. diplomatic interests in South Asia, Central and East Asia, and the former Soviet Union. From 1989 to 1992, he was then-President George H.W. Bush's Special Envoy on Afghanistan with the rank of Ambassador. Amb. Tomsen was U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Armenia from 1995 to 1998. After retiring from the Foreign Service, he has been frequently called upon to speak on Afghanistan, Pakistan, and South Asia before Congress and to the media. He has published in Foreign Affairs, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Times, and other notable newspapers and journals. His book, The Wars of Afghanistan, was published in 2011. Amb. Tomsen has received numerous awards, including three Presidential Meritorious Service Awards, two Meritorious Honor Awards, and one State Department Superior Award. He is an alumnus of the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs.

World Affairs Council Members: $15 | Non-Members: $25

Participants must register to attend. No-shows and cancellations after December 1, 2013 will be charged.

Please advise in advance of any dietary restrictions.

Online registration is closed. If you would like to attend, please contact Melanie Gulasy at 412-281-7055.

With support from the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs

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