June 17, 2020
The Exercise of Power
Robert Gates, 22nd U.S. Secretary of Defense
Tomorrow, June 18, at 5:00 PM ET

The Honorable Robert Gates brings his decades of observation and participation guarding the security of the nation to a fresh examination of the exercise and limitations of American power. Gates recently wrote in Foreign Affairs that “Most Americans want their country to stand for something beyond just military strength and economic success. They want it to be seen admiringly by others as the world’s strongest advocate for liberty.” He believes that a restructured and strengthened State Department would enable the U.S. to accept the burden of global leadership, in a manner that reduces risk for the nation. Kirkus Reviews said of Gates’ new book, “ It’s refreshing to see a Secretary of Defense call for the use of the military as a choice of last resort.”

Robert M. Gates served as Secretary of Defense under presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. He was an officer in the U.S. Air Force and worked for the CIA before being appointed Director of the agency. A member of the National Security Council staff in four administrations, he served eight presidents of both political parties. He was President of Texas A&M University from 2002 to 2006, served as National President of the Boy Scouts of America, and is currently Chancellor of the College of William & Mary. In 2018, he became Chairman of Eisenhower Fellowships. He is the author of “ Duty,” “ A Passion for Leadership,” and his newest book “ Exercise of Power: American Failures, Successes, and a New Path Forward in the Post-Cold War World.”
Vulnerability Amplified - A Special WAC Pride Month Event
Join the World Affairs Councils of America, WorldOregon, World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh, and World Affairs Council of Seattle for a special Pride Month program on Tuesday, June 23, at 3:00 PM ET, spotlighting the groundbreaking work of OutRight Action International. OutRight recently released a pioneering report, “ Vulnerability Amplified: The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on LGBTIQ People,” documenting the effects of the pandemic on LGBTIQ people.

While the COVID-19 pandemic leaves no country and no individual unaffected, drawing on almost 60 rapid research interviews conducted with LGBTIQ people in all regions of the world, the report overwhelmingly shows that the challenges faced by LGBTIQ people as a result of the virus and surrounding containment measures are specific and amplified compared to the broader population. Register here for the event to learn about OutRight’s research and response to COVID-19 and their 30-year history working for human rights for LGBTIQ people globally.

Featured speakers:

  • Jessica Stern, Executive Director, OutRight Action International
  • Neish McLean, Caribbean Program Officer, OutRight Action International
  • Luiza Drummond Veado, United Nations Program Officer, OutRight Action International
Columbus CWA and WACA Partner on June 25 Immigration Program
Columbus Council on World Affairs will present Alfredo Corchado, Mexico City Bureau Chief of the Dallas Morning News, for " Immigration, COVID-19, and the U.S. Economy" on Thurs., June 25, at 12:00 PM ET .

Due to the global pandemic, stay at home orders, quarantine, and social distancing practices are the new normal. Human movement around the globe has come to an almost screeching halt. While national governments threaten the complete suspension of migration, preventing people from moving across borders is not as obvious of a solution as it may seem - nor as beneficial.

As COVID-19 continues to spread across the world, with cases continuing to rise, supply chains around the globe are beginning to take a hit. Most notably the food supply chain is beginning to strain. The meatpacking industry, unable to accommodate proper social distancing protocol, is experiencing a severe hit to their workforce. Farmers and agricultural businesses are taking to the fields after the winter season and need an abundance of able-bodied workers. But who typically fills these roles? According to the Department of Agriculture, about half the country’s field hands, more than a million workers, are undocumented immigrants.

With administrations pushing for decreased migration across borders and the food industry pushing for more workers, where does that leave the undocumented immigrant?
After the success of the CxC: Amplified Putting the World Back Together Ideas Summit last month, WACA is delighted to amplify the voices of Councils around the country. To view CxC Summit recordings including the Summit highlights video package, check out WACA's YouTube page here. (We will be adding more session videos as we receive them from Councils.)

*To partner on event promotions, please contact Rachel Pastor at rpastor@worldaffairscouncils.org.