In light of the escalating hostilities between the United States and the North Korea, the Baruch College Republicans, also known as The Right Wings, hosted a forum to discuss U.S. foreign policy and international relations on Nov. 16.
The forum, moderated by Right Wings member Gregory Usvitsky, included Baruch philosophy professor James Rowe, and Baruch political science professors Roseanne McManus and David Lindsey.
The three academics dove right in and began to extensively address the nature and credibility of the threats made against the United States by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or North Korea.
McManus, a former senior intelligence analyst at the Defense Intelligence Agency, began by providing an analysis of the observed effects of rhetoric by national leaders. McManus was able to cite her academic research, Statements of Resolve: Achieving Coercive Credibility in International Conflict, in which she proves the necessity for political claims to be supported by sufficient physical and political ability. Of the many positions offered by McManus, who teaches “Nuclear Weapons in International Relations,” one claim that stood out was the critique of the Trump administration’s rhetorical strategy.
Lindsey, author of Military Strategy, Private Information, and War, emphasized the peculiarity of this international situation, as North Korea is the first “rogue” state to have nuclear weapons in the history of international politics. Lindsey noted the uniqueness of the United States’ position in this nuclear dilemma, as the United States at least has some knowledge of how to negotiate or affect non-nuclearization.
After offering detailed insight into the history of United States’ previous presidential administrations and their policies toward North Korea, Lindsey presented the audience with the mindset of the North Koreans in this conflict. Lindsey cited the results of Muammar Gaddafi’s surrender of Libya’s nuclear program, brutal death and overthrow of Gaddafi and his government in arguing the absolute impossibility to threaten North Korea into surrender. Lindsey argued for the refocus of United States international policy regarding the North Koreans, as the current policy will inevitably lead to unsuccessful results. Lindsey also argued that the United States should accept that North Korea will have nuclear weapons and focus our policy making on preventing the transfer or sale of the nuclear weapons constructed by North Korea. This, according to Lindsey, is the biggest hole in North Korean policy today, and seemingly the most dangerous.
Rowe offered a more philosophical perspective to the panel. Diving deep into international relationships and philosophical theories of economics and policy, Rowe invigorated the audience and fellow panel members. Additionally, Rowe asked questions to the panelists and the audience to examine philosophical concepts of morality and justifications for punishing the immoral.
Speaking after the event, Vincent Gangemi, President of The Right Wings said, “The event was a tremendous success. I am grateful that the discussion was diversified and engaging.”
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