Powell Center and U.S. State Department Cohost Conference, “Security Policy in the 21st Century."
Alon Ben-Meir with moderator's introductions (23:04)
Peter Dombrowski (15:13)
Eric Schmitt (16:09)
On May 6, 2009, the Colin Powell Center and the U.S. Department of State cohosted an all-day conference that gathered global security professionals from 37 countries to discuss best practices in counterterrorism. The conference, entitled “Security Policy in the 21st Century: A View from New York and the World,” provided a forum for participants in the State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program to exchange strategy and insights regarding how to address today's most pressing international challenges in the area of terrorism. Approximately 5,000 international leaders in government and other sectors come to the U.S. each year through this program, but the Powell Center-State Department partnership is unusual in its efforts to bring a substantial number of those visitors together for extended discussion and reflection.
The event included several closed sessions, a public panel discussion, and a keynote address by Mary Lou Edmondson, vice president for communications for the City College of New York. The open session, “Global Security Challenges: Ramifications for the New Administration,” featured Alon Ben-Meir, senior fellow, New York University School of Global Affairs; Peter Dombrowskl, professor of strategy, Naval War College; and Eric Schmitt, a journalist with The New York Times. Charles. B. Strozier, director of the Center on Terrorism at John Jay College, moderated the discussion.
Dr. Ben-Meir homed in on critical security situations in Pakistan, Iran, and Iraq. In Pakistan, a nuclear state with a weak central government, he called for long-term solutions that include strengthening the central government. He also encouraged the reorientation of Pakistan’s citizens and military away from India toward the internal threats posed by its insurgency and Al-Qaeda. With regard to Iraq, Dr. Ben-Meir argued for some level of self-rule for Sunnis, supported through oil revenues. Regarding Iran’s nuclear ambitions, he supported the administration’s efforts to open dialogue, but argued for a conditional timetable to counter Iran’s propensity to play for time. More