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As a World Affairs Council member, you join a diverse group of individuals who are passionate about expanding international awareness. Members participate in world class events featuring speakers who provide the stories behind the headlines as well as special receptions and gatherings.

As a member you will have the opportunity to build relationships with other liked minded individuals and professionals that in the local international affairs community. Your membership is valuable in supporting World Affairs Council programming and student outreach in the community.

August 13th: “Becoming Kim Jong Un: Insights Into North Korea’s Dangerous and Enigmatic Young Dictator”

Thursday, August 13th, 2020 – 1:15 PM PDT Zoom PMI: Press Here Zoom Link: 922 9619 6887 The World Affairs Council of Orange County Presents: A Free Webinar with Dr. Jung H. Pak SK-Korea Foundation Chair, Korea Studies, Brookings Institution; Sr. fellow Foreign Policy, Center for East Asia Policy Studies; Office of the CIA & DNI; South Korea Fulbright Scholar. Moderator:  Dr. Stephan Haggard, Professor of Korea-Pacific Studies; Director, Korea-Pacific Program School of Global Policy & Strategy, UCSD Purchase at: https://www.chevaliersbooks.com/  (Los Angeles) https://www.interabangbooks.com/  (Dallas/Ft. Worth) https://www.broadwaybooks.net/  (Portland) https://www.parkroadbooks.com/  (Charlotte) https://www.booksinc.net/  (San Francisco) https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/ Jung H. Pak is a senior fellow and the SK-Korea Foundation Chair in Korea Studies at Brookings Institution’s Center for East Asia Policy Studies. She is the author of “Becoming Kim Jong Un: A Former CIA Officer’s Insights into North Korea’s Enigmatic Young Dictator” (Ballantine, April 2020). Positioned as an authoritative book on North Korea under Kim Jong Un, this comprehensive account examines Kim’s personality, preferences, and policy choices, and the implications for North Korea’s internal stability, denuclearization, and global security. At Brookings, Pak focuses on the national security challenges facing the United States and East Asia, including North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction capabilities, the regime’s domestic and foreign policy calculus, internal stability, and inter-Korean ties. Pak is also focused on developing interdisciplinary forums to bolster regional dialogue on counterterrorism, nonproliferation, cybersecurity, and climate change. She also has expertise in broader U.S.-South Korea relations and regional dynamics. Pak is an accomplished intelligence professional specializing in East Asia political and security issues with strong academic credentials. She has held senior positions at the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Prior to her work in national security, Pak taught at Hunter College in New York City and studied in South Korea as a Fulbright Scholar. As a senior analyst, Pak published hundreds of intelligence assessments, including the President’s Daily Brief. Several of these papers have been considered required reading and important benchmark studies. Countless assessments have had direct policy impact. From 2014 to 2016, Pak served as a deputy national intelligence officer at the National Intelligence Council in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI). In that role, Pak led the U.S. intelligence community’s (IC) production of strategic analysis on Korean Peninsula issues, represented the IC in White House policy meetings, provided direct analytic support to the National Security Council, and advised the DNI and his senior staff on key developments and emerging issues. At CIA, where she won multiple awards for superior analytic accomplishments and service, Pak produced timely and actionable analysis for the president and also helped to manage and support CIA’s projects related to the U.S. presidential transition. Pak grew up in New York City and graduated from Colgate University where she served as a member of the Board of Trustees from 2009 to 2015. She received her doctorate from Columbia University in U.S. history. Stephan Haggard is the Krause Distinguished Professor at the School of Global Policy and Strategy at the University of California San Diego and director of the Korea-Pacific Program; see  https://www.stephanhaggard.com/ . He has […]

August 18th: “Shields of the Republic: The Triumph and Peril of America’s Alliances”

Tuesday, August 18th, 2020 – 9 AM PDT Join the World Affairs Councils of Dallas Fort Worth and Orange County for a livestream event on: “Shields of the Republic: The Triumph and Peril of America’s Alliances” Alliances with other countries have been an integral part of U.S. foreign policy since the beginning of our country. Mira Rapp-Hooper says, “When alliances are working, we don’t see them at all,” which may have caused the alliance system to become “a victim of its own quiet success.” Today the system faces challenges not only from disrupter countries such as China and Russia, but also from Americans who question their value and cost. Join Jim Falk in conversation with Rapp-Hooper about her new book, “Shields of the Republic: The Triumph and Peril of America’s Alliances.” Mira Rapp-Hooper is a senior fellow for Asia studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and a senior fellow at Yale Law School’s Paul Tsai China Center. She was the Asia policy coordinator for the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. Her policy writings have appeared in The National Interest, Foreign Affairs and Washington Quarterly. She holds a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.A., M.Phil. and Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University. Purchase the book from Interabang »  

September 10th: “US and NATO: End of an Era?” with Ambassador (ret) Lawrence E. Butler

Thursday, September 10, 2020 – 1:15 PM PDT The World Affairs Council of Orange County Presents: “US and NATO: End of an Era? Ambassador Butler spent 40 years with the U.S. Foreign Service, usually as far from Washington as he could get. Currently he supports U.S. military exercises, including replicating NATO’s role in European scenarios, and playing the role of U.S. Ambassador – scenario dependent, as well as POLAD (Foreign Policy Advisor) to Corps and Division HQs and US Special Forces teams. His final official assignments included: Civilian Deputy to the Commander and POLAD, United States European Command in Stuttgart; Foreign Policy Advisor to the Commander, U.S. Forces in Iraq for Operation New Dawn; and Foreign Policy Advisor for the Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) at SHAPE/Allied Command Operations in Belgium. While in Iraq 2010-2011, Ambassador Butler guided the US military command in transitioning operational lead to the U.S. Embassy. He engaged directly in mediating tensions between Kurdish and Iraqi forces in the sensitive, oil-rich Kirkuk region, initiated the process that removed the Iranian MEK from Camp Ashraf while negotiating with the Iraqi Government to minimize violence, provided guidance to the U.S. Commander on engaging with Gulf Allies during this period, including developing a work around on finalizing the seminal F-16 sale to Iraq, and engaged Turkish authorities to moderate rising tensions with the Kurdistan Regional Government. This was Ambassador Butler’s second involvement with Iraq, having served as President Bush’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for Near East Asia, in charge of State Department Iraq policy and operations 2007-2008. Butler orchestrated the “civilian surge” that deployed new Provincial Reconstruction Teams embedded with each of the 15 surge BCTs, and successful engaged in outreach to sustain the coalition, visiting more than 20 non-NATO member countries to keep them involved. Between Iraq engagements, while at NATO with SACEUR 2008-2010, Ambassador Butler was involved with NATO’s Afghanistan and Balkans operational issues reflecting SACEUR’s role as the higher HQ for ISAF and Kosovo. He regularly visited Afghanistan with SACEUR and provided new thinking for NATO and U.S. policy development, particularly with Afghanistan’s neighbors, as well as guided engagement with both NATO and future NATO alliance members. Since formal retirement (and a three year period of re-employment by the State Department for special projects and inspections), Ambassador Butler provides subject matter expertise to the Army’s Futures and Concepts Center (FCC) as well as to Geographic Combatant Command, Army Corps, Division, and Brigade-level exercises, with particular focus on INDOPACOM and USEUCOM area of responsibility priorities. Previous key assignments include: 2005-2007, Ambassador Butler served as the Principal Deputy High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, a UN-linked international position responsible for Dayton Peace Accord implementation; He was the US Ambassador to Macedonia, 2002-2005, where he implemented the Ohrid Peace Agreement and helped mentor Macedonia towards Euro-Atlantic integration. As Director for Europe on the White House National Security Council staff, 1997-1999, he was the staff lead for President Clinton in achieving the 1998 Northern Ireland Good Friday Peace Accords. Earlier, Ambassador Butler was initially the Deputy Chief of Mission and then acting Chief of Mission in Belgrade, Serbia, supporting efforts that […]

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