Last Monday we finally had our Remobilizing NATO meeting with some of the experts on our expert and leadership teams. Getting to be in this meeting and listening to the thoughts and suggestions of all these extremely knowledgeable people was an amazing experience and I am sure I will remember it (along with my humble beginnings as an intern) for the rest of my career. This meeting was a vital portion to completing our assessment as well.
The meeting was very successful and we had about 25 of the over forty attend or call-in. The main focus of this meeting was the dilemma of the entire region, mainly the Af-Pak problem and how it should be dealt with. Many of the experts discussed implications of a more aggressive relationship with Pakistan and how this would affect relationships with India and create political unstability throughout the reason. They also discussed how communications between the United States and other NATO countries need to be increased for true and effective measures can be taken to provide a successful front in Afghanistan. The information and opinions that they provided will be invaluable to our final assessment.
Something that was very noticeable at this meeting was the absence of women experts in this field. Out of the 35 people in the room and on the phone I was one of three women and only two of the experts were women. Even on our experts list there are only four or five female experts. This showed me the lack of the female perspective there is in international relations and the importance of making an impact and being knowledgable to provide an example for future generations of women. I am even more determined now than ever to become an important figurehead in the realm of international relations.
Preparation for the meeting was long and arduous. Helping Ryan prepare for prepared me immensely for what I may try to do in the future. Even though at times the process of creating invitations, finding experts to invite and who were commited and reflected the ideals of the project, calling experts to confirm, creating an agenda for the meeting, and moderating and explaining the project.
I am currently assigned the task of transcribing the majority of this meeting, so this will be a very consuming task for my last few days.