Discussions on diplomacy

Published on Thu, Apr 4, 2002
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Discussions on diplomacy

“War is the failure of diplomacy. Hoover said that. When you stop talking, you start fighting.” Former career diplomat and political science professor Don Morgan is hosting a discussion series on American diplomacy in the 20th century which starts this week at the Blaine Public Library.

“There a very high awareness of international involvement now, after September 11 events and Afghanistan” Morgan said. “I thought perhaps people might be interested in discussing why we have the kind of policies we do and look at them critically.”

After starting his career in education, Morgan spent four years working with the U.S. State Department during the Eisenhower presidency, under John Foster Dulles as secretary of state. He served as vice-consul in India and Germany, as a policy briefing aide to Dulles and the department’s Latin American bureau. Morgan left the state department and went back to education, retiring as a graduate professor of policy analysis at the University of Minnesota.

The first forum, on April 4, will focus on how we live in the United States, how other cultures and nations live differently and how that affects international relationships and policies.

“You need to understand the structure and function of basic social institutions to understand what we do, what they do,” he said. “We’ve always been isolationist,” he said, “protected so long by those two big oceans.” He plans a 20-minute presentation followed by a 40-minute discussion as the format for each of the forums.

The remaining three Thursdays in April, Morgan plans to focus on American diplomacy in the Pacific Rim, Europe and Africa. “It’s an examination of current issues,” he said, “but exploring them from a historical and social perspective.”

All sessions will be held in the meeting room at Blaine public library from 7-8 p.m. and are free.

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