Short Snippet of My International Relations Classes

You know when in your off time you want to talk about Nuclear Weapon Free Zone, and worry about chances of democracy in Middle East and South Asia or when you just feel a little frustrated by the fact Canadian Foreign Policy story can literally be replaced by the American Foreign Policy and then see Bush be a second version of Stalin, I do wonder where am I headed in understanding the world. Through a recent simulation that I led in class, where we acted out four different committee session between 1924-1929 we tried to understand how Stalin rose to power. As he beat his opponents and  with some luck,  ultimately he led soviet union to a disaster. I could not help wonder then to be caution of the fact that where conviction can be guiding, it can be blinding. We have believes but from time to time we need check in with them. What do you believe in? Who do you believe in? Where are your believes leading you?  Meanwhile, in my Canadian Foreign Policy I am realizing that Canada continues to glue one feet within America while attempt to extend their other leg into the world in term of  diplomacy. Honestly Canada I’m not really sure whether your really the “middle power” if you only follow and let your southern neighbors leads. Hey, I’m not asking or provoking for  a war but Canada come on, considering in class we talk more about American position then Canada itself the dependency relationship Canada has with America is a little disturbing to say the least. The readings are a little dull and nothing ever provoking takes place. Come on, Canada I know you are much more exciting and have the potential to lead.  And after doing couple of role plays in International Security, I’m realizing how difficult negotiations can be between nations where solution is almost impossible. I realize here perhaps the role of intellectuals of the relevant countries are key in bridging the gap between nations over important issues, where they can play a role beyond intellectual circles and even positively drive talks forward. Representatives of different states are often way too burdened with number of issues on their plate and I think intellectuals here can play an active role in real world of politics. To great extent they already do but they too have their own agenda and interests. If these intellectuals really worked for the best way to reconcile over issues of contention, perhaps then, a different world could be possible. Further in my Diplomacy class, I am just beginning to prepare for two weeks simulation on climate negotiations and I will be representing one of the big players, yes China.  Let’s see how this develops and I will follow up with this in coming posts.  On last note, in American Foreign Policy class, my first assignment on neo-conservatives role in policy making process, I totally failed at but a case presentation on counter-terrorism abroad should get me back on track. And again this is something I will follow with a more detailed post.  I’m not sure where all these issues are driving my mind but it is paving some path and moving my believes and views in some way. For now, I try to take in these realities as my course work jump from different histories to different parts of the world.  How close are you to grasp what your professors are teaching you and your readings are telling you? Even though I’m in my last year of undergrad, I feel like I’ve only just begun.


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