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    3rd Quarter 2010 Vol: 1 Issue : 3


  • GO GLOBALEditors Note

    Dear Readers,

    We have just completed an exceptional formative year as the Gamma Omega chapter of Sigma Iota Rho!! As we move into year two, we have already elected new officers to lead us forward. During this transitional phase, there have been a few consistent themes. One is that this year promises to bring challenge, growth and incredible potential. The other has been a sincere expression of thanks and gratitude to everyone who contributed to last years success including Dan Thompson, Lindsay John-son (Ryan), Robert Hones, Professor Watts, Professor Dannels-Ruff, Sergei Oudmann as well as many others who contributed time, skill and support and have helped to establish the incredible foundation that we have to build upon.

    You will discover more about the transition, new officers, committees, and chapter goals as you peruse the following pages. You will also have a chance to read the Presidents mission for the upcoming term. As many of you already know our new President, Abdul Abid, was previously the Editor in Chief of the Gamma Omega Newsletter. He took a pivotal role in shaping, developing and distribut-ing the chapters first newsletter with the support of a team of writers and faculty advisors. (The first two issues are on our website sirgo.org. The link can be found on the SIR Gamma Omega Facebook page.) As much as we will miss his talent here at the newsletter, we are happy to congratulate Abdul in his new role. Part of his leadership focus includes encouraging others to take on new responsibili-ties. (And that is how you find me welcoming you to our third quarter newsletter.) John Casey returns as Managing Editor and is responsible for the layout and visual content of the newsletter. Many thanks to John and all the contributing writers for the time they have spent on all of the newsletters and their willingness to continue on!!

    This year, as reflected in the Presidents Report, Abdul will introduce new committees to the chapter and with it, new opportunities for membership involvement. Use these opportunities to help to shape the future of our organization as well as your own!! The timing to be part of this growing organiza-tion is ideal. The global community is becoming increasingly more connected which makes the study of international relations even more relevant and important.

    As we look to the global community, we witness the triumphs and tragedies of the past year. Haiti and Pakistan were hit with costly disasters which continue to impact their citizens. World leaders struggle to find answers for Irans nuclear concerns, Iraq and the circle of violence in South America. Despite some of the challenges, there are still many positive steps being made in the international community. One example is the concept of PRODEC, but there are more.

    As you travel through the pages of this newsletter, I hope you discover things about the world that are new to you. If you can think of things that you would like to share, please consider submitting an article in our next newsletter. Until then, enjoy.


  • GO GLOBALTable of Contents

    Presidents CornerAbdul Abid

    Page 4

    Chapter NewsPage 7

    Challenge Your International IQPage 11

    Featured Articles ByConnie Uthoff

    Michelle Arnold Wattsand

    Kimberly Daniels-RuffRobert Hones

    page 12

    News Alertspage 19

    Op-EdsJeff HeuermannMarleen Julien

    page 22

    Career Centerpage 26

    GO Global Newsletter is completed quarterly during the year. For any responses to articles or op-eds,

    please contact the Editor via email: [email protected]

    Pledged members of Gamma Omega are encouraged to join the newslet-ter team to submit any of the following: feature articles, short essays, brief news alerts, op-eds, book reviews, (all international-related), academic/career advice and resources, school/chapter announcements, member milestones,

    crosswords, and advertisements.

    2010- 2011 Chapter Officers President

    Abdul AbidAcademic Journal Committee Chairwoman

    Donna WalkerDirector of Special Events & Speaker Series

    Jamie MontgomeryDirector of Charity and Service Programs

    Deven DunkleChief of StaffScott FreitasWebmaster

    Sergei OudmanFaculty Advisor

    Michelle Marie Arnold WattsFaculty Advisor

    Kimberly Dannels-RuffInaugural Honorary Member

    Wallace Boston (APUS)Inaugural Honorary Member

    Gwen Hall (APUS)

    Administrative StaffAbdul Abid

    Kimberly Dannels-RuffMichelle Marie Arnold Watts

    Sergei OudmanDan ThompsonLindsay RyanRobert Hones

    Newsletter Staff 3rd Quarter Volume 1, Issue 3

    Editor in Chief: Connie Peterson UthoffManaging Editor: John J. Casey

    Graphic Designers: John J. Casey, Marleen Julien Contributing Writers: Abdul Abid, Jeff Heuermann, Robert Hones,

    Justin Jetton, Marleen Julien , Joshua Maes, Rafael G. Perez, Jesse Puga, Kimberly Dannels-Ruff, Connie P. Uthoff, Michelle Marie

    Arnold Watts

    Cover Photograph - Marleen Julien (Haiti 2010)

  • GAMMA OMEGABy Abdul AbidGamma Omega President

    Dear members of the Gamma Omega chapter of the prestigious Sigma Iota Rho honor society,

    It is an honor to be able serve as your president. Im looking forward to working with all of you for the next 11 months. First, Id like to thank our previous and 1st president, Dan Thompson for his service and all he has done for this organization. Id also like to thank Lindsay Johnson, the

    former vice president and Robert Hones, the former chief of staff. Together with the faculty advisors, Professor Watts and Professor Dannels-Ruff, these members have led the organization to success. During their term of over 12 months, they brought before the chapter 4 guest speakers, 2 outstanding newsletter issues, managed 2 membership drives, scheduled a tour of the Senate Building and met with Senator Lindsey Graham, and held the chapters 1st annual meeting. It is now time for the 2nd administration to move the chapter forward. I would like to briefly discuss some upcoming goals and proj-ects. Our chapter has an annual Academic Journal, which is a collection of some of the best academic papers written by our members. The Academic Journal, also known as the GO Global Review, is being directed by Donna Walker and is expected to be completed in the first half of 2011.

    Id also like to announce the creation of the Special Events & Speaker Series (SESS) program. I have nominated Jamie Montgomery to be the chapters 1st director of this program. Jamie will be contacting and scheduling potential speakers and will plan our chapters annual meeting in June 2011. An Events Coordinator and a couple other members will hopefully join the SESS staff.

    A strength of our chapter has been our newsletter. As the chapters first Editor in Chief, I directed our first two issues which were dis-tributed earlier this year in May and August. If you have not had a chance to read them, you can find them on our chapters website, sirgo.org Make sure you are logged in to view the publications. The link to the issues can be found on our chapters Facebook page.

    Id like to thank Sergei Oudman, our chapters webmaster. Sergei has done a tremendous job in creating and maintaining our chapters website. The website will be home to our newsletter and Academic Journal. Future students and members will be able to access any newsletter or Academic Journal from the site.

    Membership to our society will become a bit more selective than it has been in the past. Therefore, I will select a team of 2 or 3 admis-sions officers who will review applications during the 2 membership drives in the year. These members will be highly determined and motivated individuals of character and integrity. Thus, they will either admit or deny students. Participation while being an active student will be required in our chapter.

    I also plan on recognizing and awarding active members. We currently have some funds that we can utilize towards that goal. In order to assist with how funds will be used, I plan on creating a treasurer position in the chapter. The treasurer will work closely with the chapter officers, faculty advisors, and the schools student affairs office on raising and keeping track of funds for the chapter.

    Id also like to announce a Department of Education within our chapter. Counselors in this group will work to put in place at least one or two of the following programs in the school: a minor in International Relations, an undergraduate or graduate certificate in either International Relations/Conflict Resolution or Diplomacy, and an Associates degree in International Relations. Priority will be given towards helping create a minor in International Relations. Additionally, our counselors will help tutor and advise other members of the chapter. Also, these counselors will attempt to help American Military University become a member school of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (APSIA).

    This chapter has become the most active student organization at one of the largest and most popular online schools in the United States. And for the next year, I will ensure that we remain active and become a top Sigma Iota Rho chapter. Thank you to all the members who have contributed their time and service to this organization.

    Respectfully,Abdul Abid

    Chapter President2010-2011

    The Presidents Corner

    [email protected] http://sirgo.org

    3rd Quarter 2010

  • Recent ElectionsThere is not any present moment that is unconnected with some future one. The life of every person is a continued chain of incidents, each link of which hangs upon the former. The transition from cause to effect, from event to event, is often carried on by secret steps, which our foresight cannot divine, and our sagacity is unable to trace. ~ Joseph Addison

    We are proud to welcome our new Gamma Omega chapter presi-dent, Abdul Abid. Since the election, he has demonstrated a firm commitment to building on our chapters foundation of prog-ress. Make sure to read the Presidents Corner and check on the chapter Facebook site to find out more about Abduls goals for the coming year and for ways that you can participate in our continued growth and success. We have been fortunate to have had a fantastic first year with exceptional leadership and par-ticipation and though the first term is over, the support of the former officers continues. Dan Thompson echoed the sentiments of many of our members and discussed their transition to an-other role. He states, Congratulations to our new Gamma Omega President Abdul Abid and Vice President Eric Craig Handley for being elected by more than 50 members as the 2010-2011 leaders. We would also like to thank Natalie Eidsness and Scott Freitas (nominated Chief of Staff ) for taking the initiative to run for office. Lindsay, Rob, and myself all look forward to as-sisting the new Executive Council with the leadership transition. To hear more about our Sigma Iota Rho Gamma Omega Year in Review, visit our Facebook page on November 1 and watch Dans video presentation.

    Continue to check out Facebook and read through the newsletter to find out more about Abduls new committees, our upcoming guest speakers, and for ways that you can contribute to and benefit from membership in Gamma Omega. As a virtual honor society, we have opportunities that traditional brick and mortar societies dont. Take advantage of the contacts you can make, the ways you can contribute, and how your participation can translate into great resume building material.

    We look forward to our upcoming year, the plans that our Executive Team have for us and for the opportunities we have to build on our wonderful foundation in the months to come!! Thank you to everyone who has dedicated their time to make this all possible!!

  • Recent Nominations by the PresidentThank you for your support!!!

    Chief of Staff Scott FreitasSpecial Events & Speaker Series (SESS)Director Jamie Montgomery

    Charity and Service Programs Director Devin Dunkle

    Keep checking Facebook for other ways to contribute!! Thank you for those who are participating and lending your talent and expertise to Gamma Omega already!!!

    Election of New Officers

  • 1st General Assembly


    On Sunday, November 7, 2010, the Gamma Omega chapter held their first annual General Assembly via a teleconference call. There were nearly 15 members on the teleconference; our president, Abdul Abid gave his 1st formal speech to the chapter. Dr. Gwen Hall, one of our chapters inaugural honorary members and dean of the School of Security and Global Stud-ies at APUS, also joined the call and spoke to the group. Members that were on the call included Nico Figueroa from Afghanistan, Dan Thompson from South Korea, Robert Hones from Colombia, John Casey from San Fran-

    cisco, faculty advisors Michelle Watts and Kimberly Dannels-Ruff, Jamie Montgomery, Connie Uthoff, and Donna Mastrangelo. The call began with Professor Watts welcoming everyone, thanking the previous administration, and introducing Abdul Abid. Abdul discussed his upcoming goals and programs to move the chap-ter forward in 2011. He then introduced Dr. Gwen Hall who thanked everyone in the chapter for all their efforts toward making the organization so successful. Dr. Hall also answered a few questions and explained that there was a committee that our chapter could work with in our goal to bring a minor in International Relations to the schools curriculum.

    After Dr. Hall spoke, Abdul read a swearing-in statement for any of the new members. Following this, there was a discussion on student growth at APUS, bringing promotional material on IR for local high schools, and scheduling our chapters 2nd annual meeting (in person) in June 2011 to coincide with the APUS Commencement. Abdul also announced that alumni would now be able to run for of-fice in future elections.

    Earlier in the week on Wednesday, November 3, 2010, the chapter held their pre-General Assem-bly and planning via a teleconference call. It was the first such meeting as president for Abdul Abid. The call lasted approximately 125 minutes long, the longest teleconference call in our chapters history. Many topics were discussed including upcoming speakers, the schedule/outline for the General As-sembly, and various other plans, issues, and projects.


    1st Annual General AssemblySunday, Nov. 72 p.m. EST Dear fellow Gamma Omega member,

    We would like to invite you to our 1st Annual "General Assembly" teleconference call on Sunday, November 7 at 2pm Eastern Standard Time. Joining us on the call will be Dr. Gwen Hall, Dean of the School of Security and Global Studies and one of our chapter's honorary members. There is also a possibility that APUS President Wallace Boston will be on the call.

    During the call, we will discuss upcoming projects and goals; Dr. Hall will speak to the members briefly; the new Executive Council and the former president will also make brief speeches about the future of Gamma Omega. Members will also be invited to take the Sigma Iota Rho oath. Following the formal events, the general assembly of members will be invited to propose ideas and ask the Executive Council questions in an open forum.

    Please also note the return to Standard Time and do not forget to set your clocks back one hour at 2 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 7th. The following states/territories do not observe Daylight Saving Time: Arizona, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and American Samoa.

    To call in:Dial: 866 692 3158At the prompt, enter: 56 78 904 followed by the # signPlease mute your phone when you are not talking.

  • GO Chapter News


    Mark your calendars for some of the upcoming events. Look here and on Facebook for ways to get involved!!

    For those who would like to get involved, there are many opportunities. Currently the fol-lowing positions and volunteer opportunities are available:

    Chapter Treasurer: The treasurer will assist the officers and advisors on raising and keep-ing track of funds, as well as recommending ways we could use funds toward chapter goals/


    Education Department including Advisor/Tutor for other students

    Writers for the newsletter Contact Connie Uthoff or John Casey

    Writers for the Academic Journal Contact Donna Walker

    Members for our new Charity and Service Department

    Student Curriculum Committee This is still under development Contact Lindsay Ryan or Kimberly Dannels-Ruff: We are attempting to create a minor in International Re-lations, we may need 1 or 2 members to serve on this committee, but it is not part of G.O.

    Membership Drive This is part of the Membership Department. Two or three highly motivated members of good character and integrity will be selected to review applications

    during the Fall and Spring membership drives and will admit/deny applications.

  • Other news & upcoming programs: Our next speaker is Clint Borgen, founder of the Clint Borgen project, an or-ganization that helps fight global poverty. Clint will be speaking to us on the evening of December 7. Were also currently attempting to turn the teleconference call into our inaugural webinar. Please join us on the evening of December 7, 2010. Details will be on Facebook. Visit Clints website to find out more about his organization: www.theborgenproject.org.

    Our January speaker will be a colleague of Dan Thompson, former president and current Board of Trustees chairman. Dans colleague will talk about Chinese business culture. China recently became the worlds 2nd largest economy, now only behind the U.S. and fast approaching towards 1st place despite the global recession, so the topic is incredibly relevant!!!

    Other speakers next year may include foreign officers, APUS professors, and more. We post a lot of announcements and events on our Facebook page, so please make sure you can stop by there at least once or twice a week, and join a discussion there as well

    GO Chapter News


  • GGGGamma Omega cordially invites you to our fifth telelecture of 2010 as we welcome AMU graduate student and South America enthusiast Frances R. Arias as she discusses the terrorist threat emanating from the tri-border area between Brazil, Argentina, and Paraguay, Wednesday November 17 at 8 p.m. EST via toll-free call. She will answer your questions live following his presentation. Up to 50 attendees may attend at one time. New members are highly encouraged to attend this event, as it will count towards Society participation.

    Frances R. AriasAMU Graduate Student& Gamma Omega member

    International Insights Speaker Series: Tri-Border Terror

    PHOTO RELATED TO TOPIC HERE AND CROPPED (Do not scalea photo so that it is distorted)

    To join the lecture, please call 1-866-692-3158 and at the prompt, enter: 56 78 904 followed by the # sign.Please call shortly before the start time

    Past Lecture


  • Announcing SIR GO Stars of the Year

    Support for our Troops

    The year is coming to a close. Many people all over the world have contributed sig-nificantly to global issues, such as poverty, natural disasters, conflicts, etc. Our inau-gural, annual SIR GO Stars of the Year event is set to begin. Please email us back ([email protected]) with your nomination; your nomination could be an ordi-nary person, a celebrity, or a politician/world leader. Nominations will be accepted up from November 30 to Dec. 10, of which 7-10 Stars will advance to the Finals

    (our OrgSync poll). Starting on December 1st and through December 18, the poll on OS (https://orgsync.com/14229/polls) will be available for you to vote for your Star. On Dec. 19, the winners will be announced, posted on our FB page, and fea-

    tured in the next issue of our newsletter as the SIR GO Stars of the Year.

    Our school was part of a great pro-gram in which students/members sent short messages of thanks to either our troops or American Red Cross personnel serving overseas. The organization with the highest participation in November will re-ceive credit and be featured in the upcoming December edition of the universitys newsletter. But more importantly, this also gave all of us an additional, unique opportunity

    to thank our service members serving overseas in challenging environ-ments. Therefore, please access the following link:


    GO Chapter News




  • Challenge Your International IQ(Reuters AlertNet Challenge - answers on Page 29)

    Test yourself to see how much you know about international trivia. Answers are at the end of the newsletter.

    1. When did the people of East Timor vote for their countrys independence?

    a. 1929b. 1999c. 1987

    2. What is the only means of earning a living for the poor inhabitants of Ashar Chor a split of land in the Bay of Bengal?

    a. Rice cultivationb. Farmingc. Drying fish

    3. What is the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) Index?

    a. A report on press freedomb. An index that outlines the current reports on high risk areasc. A collection of guidelines for journalists reporting from risky areas

    4. Which country is receiving the largest amounts of foreign donations in Africa?

    a. Sierra Leoneb. Ethiopiac. Somalia

    5. How many hunger strikes has Guillermo Farinas winner of the European Union human rights prize conducted in the last two decades.

    a. 15b. 9c. 20

    6. What is the ghutka very common among Pakistani?a. a flavored rice dishb. a concoction of tobacco, betel nut and flavorsc. a favorite drink that comes from a specific indigenous community


  • The Days After the Rain Fell - Flood Recovery in PakistanBy Connie Uthoff

    The Pakistan of today is defined by children who grew up in Soviet refugee camps ... The Pakistan of tomorrow will be defined by the children who are affected by this flood. (Najam 2010)

    Beginning in July of this year, the result of a series of heavy monsoon rains that compromised the Indus River Basin, Pakistan experienced severe and devastating flooding that continues to jeopardize the quality of life and economic security of the region today. Some accounts esti-mate that up to 2.5 million people have been affected, but there is an inconsistency of reporting which suggests that a clear number has yet to be determined. Claiming more than 1500 lives, the devastation has impacted significant areas of Pakistani life and livelihood and may take years to rebuild from. One immediate concern has been the high number of displaced families and individuals from their homes. According to the United nations High Commis-sioner for Refugees (UNHCR 2010), to date more than 1.4 million people had to relocate into camps or have assistance with other types of shelter. Though these camps were ex-pected to be very temporary, with winter approaching and water still standing in Sindh and Balochistan, the burden to care for displaced people will continue for an undetermined period of time. Separate reports by the UNHCR and the Integrated Regional Information Networks, indicated that another problem is that some of the flood victims who can go home do not have the adequate transportation to get there or the money to pay the way (IRIN 2010). These persons are anxious to get home and get back to putting their lives together, but returning people to their homes was not well thought out and has impacted many families.

    As some struggle to get home, there are some individuals who were not tended to during the immediate crisis and are part of a second wave of people needing assistance and significant care. Shelter, blankets, clean water and food are the most pressing items that these families need for survival; however a large number of families are still cut off from help, living in regions where the bridges or roads have been destroyed. Isolated and desperate for help they are relying to be airlifted to a more secure location as soon as help can reach them.

    This second wave is a reminder of the long term and continuous impact a natural disaster can have on a nation. As the world witnessed with Hurricane Katarina and more recently the tragedy in Haiti, for example, crisis digs into a community and the consequences to human lives linger long after the event and initial response. Elizabeth Ferris, a Senior Fellow of For-eign Policy, develops this concept more thoroughly. She writes, Disasters, whether triggered by natural hazards or human behavior or by the interaction between the two, affect millions of people for long periods of time. These disasters are usually defined asthe consequences of events triggered by natural hazards that overwhelm local response capacity and seriously affect the social and economic development of a region (Ferris 2010).

    Studioportosabbia | Dreamstime.com

    Featured Articles


  • Featured Articles 3rd Quarter 2010

    The aftermath in Pakistan has been no exception. On top of the devastating cost to human life, livelihood and home, the flooding also impacted some of the following areas: The power infrastructure was severely compromised. The destruction of railways, highways and public buildings has caused hundreds of millions of dollars in damage. As a result of limited clean water, diseases including a recent outbreak of Malaria- and sanitation problems are a growing risk. Significant crops and farmland were destroyed including cotton, rice, tobacco and sugarcane. Livestock was also seriously impacted. As is the case in many disaster areas, looting and crime has increased significantly. One concern that is unique to Pakistan according to a Red Cross report is that unexploded mines and shells have been dispersed and swept away by flood waters presenting a significant future risk. Human trafficking can also be a concern when communities are torn apart and individuals are left vulnerable or alone. These are just a handful of issues that Pakistan will have to address now and perhaps far into the future.

    The global community has stepped forward to assist, but Pakistan will still need more money toward recovery. The United States Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton suggested that Pakistan tax the more wealthy to help share the burden of repara-tions, but even then, Pakistan has significant work to do. In relation to the Pakistan crisis, Ferris gives us a glimpse into some overall human and yearly costs to the global community in regards to worldwide disasters. She shares that, in the course of 2009, there were 335 natural disasters worldwide which killed 10,655 persons, affected more than 119 million others and caused over US $ 41.3 billion in economic damages. In 2008, disasters took the lives of more than 235,000 people, affected 214 million and resulted in economic losses of over $190 billion. And we know that 2010 is going to go down as a particu-larly bad year with the mega disasters of Haiti and Pakistan (Ferris 2010).

    Despite the efforts to send aid or to better understand the costs, the real continued impact as echoed in Najams earlier quote, is felt most directly by the impoverished victims. One article soberly reminds us of this: Nearby, children were flying kites in a field blanketed with ashen dust residue from the floods. Its difficult to find a child in this area who doesnt bear some mark of illness: a bald spot, for instance, or mottled skin. Two women scour the neighborhood to vaccinate against polio. Wajahat Bibi, a mother of six, expresses a theme that has echoed since the floods started that aid is being distributed not on the basis of need but on the basis of political patronage.

    Even now we dont have any quilts or blankets, said resident Wajahat Bibi, a mother of six who knows that winter falls fast in Pakistans northwest frontier, known as Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. And whatever aid is coming here, it goes to the chieftains and these rich people, and then they distribute it among their own people. (McCarthy 2010)


    Barry, Jessica. 2010. Pakistan: as flood waters recede, hidden killers lie in wait. International Committee of the Red Cross (November) http:www.icrc.org/eng/resources/documents/feature/Pakistan-feature-170810.htm (accessed November 2010).

    Ferris, Elizabeth. 2010. When Disaster Strikes: Womens Particular Vulnerabilities and Strengths. National Council of Churches Assembly http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/rwb.nsf/db900SID/MUMA-8B65C9?OpenDocument (accessed No-vember 2010).

    McCarthy, Julie. 2010. Public Mistrust Spreads in Post Flood Pakistan. NPR News (November) http://www.npr.org/tem-plates/story/story.php?storyId=130639036&ft=1&f=1004 (accessed November 2010).

    Najam, Adil. 2010. Quoted in Matt Hawley. Panel: Haiti, Pakistan need structural improvements post-disasters, The Daily Free Press http://www.dailyfreepress.com/news/panel-haiti-pakistan-need-structural-improvements-post-disas-ters-1.2397234 (accessed November 2010).

    United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees 2010. Three months after floods first hit Pakistan, camps still critically important. http://www.reliefweb.int/rw/rwb.nnsf/db900SID/JALR-8APFZJ?OpenDocument (accessed November 2010).

    United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Integrated Regional Information Networks 2010. Pak-istan: No way home for poorest displaced. www.reliefweb.int/rw/rwb.nsf/db900SID/LSGZ-8AREKW?OpenDocuments (accessed November 2010).

    Voice of America.com 2010. Clinton urges Pakistan to tax wealthy for flood relief. http://www.voanews.com/english/news/-Clinton-Urges-Pakistan-to-Tax-Wealthy-for-Flood-Relief-104945559.html (accessed November 2010).


  • Featured Articles 3rd Quarter 2010

    Qu es PRODEC? A Brief Glimpse into a Little Known ProgramBy Michelle Arnold Watts and Kimberly Daniels-Ruff

    Most Panamanians have heard or read in the newspapers the im-pressive revenues generated by the Ca-nal. For instance, in 2008, the Canal generated $2 billion in revenue (ACP 2008), the highest profit yet achieved. Clearly a great deal of money is be-ing generated by the Canal, but does the average Panamanian really benefit from the Canal? A colleague and I recently visited Panama in search of

    an answer to this question. Canal funds are distributed to communities throughout Panama by means of a program called PRODEC. When my colleague and I asked various people in Panama City what they thought of PRODEC, the most com-mon response was Qu es PRODEC? While there are many ways that the Canal indirectly benefits the people of Panama, such as through lower taxes and improved infrastructure, many Panamanians are unaware that there are Canal funds which can be used for community improvement, and that they can weigh in on how these funds are used.

    PRODEC, Programa de Desarollo Social Comunitario, is a program initiated in 2006 to use designated Canal Funds for community improvement. Currently, $5 million in Canal revenue a year is set aside for this purpose. Every corregimiento (subdivision) in Panama receives $80,000 in PRODEC funds a year; this money is used for projects initiated by the people of the corregimiento in town meetings. The goal of each project is to benefit as much of the community as possible. Common projects include roads, walkways, aqueducts, rural electrification, improvements to schools, cultural centers, and multi-use recreation areas and parks.

    Projects have multiple steps. Communities consult in town meetings first, then representatives meet with PRO-DEC employees to submit their proposed projects. In the next stage engineers and architects conduct feasibil-ity studies of the proposed projects. Projects then go to bid. The winning company is required to begin work within seven days of receiving the contract. Projects are then monitored throughout the development process.

    PRODEC is an impressive concept: it strives to be a microcosm of community empowerment and almost pure democracy, with the people of each community participating in the decision making process. Of course, PRODEC does not operate in utopia. In 2008, Eric Jackson described PRODEC as political patronage slush funds ( Jackson 2008). Last year, when Ing. Vladimir Herrera took over the position of director of PRODEC, he revealed that the program was bankrupt and that many projects were falsely listed as completed, inflating


    Adeliepenguin | Dreamstime.com

  • Featured Articles 3rd Quarter 2010

    the numbers claimed to have been completed under the previous government. Out of 3,289 projects listed as completed, only 1,079 had actually been finished (Lynch 2009). While companies are supposed to begin work within seven days, some beneficiaries are under the impression that the companies have three years to start a project because of the delays they have experienced.

    In some cases, important projects are delayed for months because it can be difficult to secure a contractor for the amount of money that is budgeted for the project. One PRODEC beneficiary we interviewed reported that a much needed dock for an island community has been on hold for three years because contractors claimed the work would cost more than was budgeted. The project remains on hold until more money can be obtained or a contractor is found willing to work for the allotted amount.

    In remote communities, roads built with PRODEC funds have deteriorated rapidly. Beneficiaries we inter-viewed from some of these projects believe the roads were poorly designed by the companies that took the money, only to do shoddy work and leave. When questioned about this problem, PRODEC employees noted that this may not be the result of a design defect, but due to the same conditions that make these communities so hard to access in the first place. Rain and mud cause rapid attrition in these communities. However, PRO-DEC employees also note that poorly designed projects are among their biggest impediments.

    Some PRODEC beneficiaries would like to perform more of the project work themselves, using PRODEC funds to buy equipment to not only build but to also maintain roads. Generally, community members have little possibility of winning the bid to manage projects because they do not have the insurance or guarantees that larger companies bring to the table.

    Communities can buy equipment for certain stages of their projects. We attended a meeting ( July 2010) where community leaders gathered to discuss proposed 2011 projects with PRODEC officials. The meeting was contentious at first due to concerns and complaints about past projects, which were poorly executed or not yet completed. Once the complaints were aired, a productive discussion about community needs and the best way to address them took place. Four corregimientos agreed to pool their money to build a longer segment of road. If all goes according to plan, the communities will buy the equipment to clear the land for the road, and then the paving process will be contracted out through a bidding process. All four communities will be responsible for maintenance, rather than having to rely on an outside source.

    We visited three projects in various stages of completion; one was a soccer field in Omar Torrijos Park in down-town Panama that had been completed under the administration of Martin Torrijos. While there were some holes in the fence surrounding the soccer field, overall the field appeared to be in good shape. More importantly, it was full of adolescent boys playing soccer at the time we visited, around 4 PM on a Tuesday afternoon. An-other project was a stunning, brand new community swimming pool. The pool employees were clearly proud and very pleased with the project, and were planning further enhancements such as a sports complex and com-munity meeting area. In contrast, we visited a problematic project in San Miguelito, a poor neighborhood in Panama City. The purpose of the project was to add three rooms and a bathroom on the second floor of a school. Both PRODEC and school officials were frank about the problems of the projects. The initial work done on this project was shoddy. Fortunately this was discovered midway through the project during an inspection. The project was delayed while the building was reinforced. A school employee was very concerned that the school dining room and existing bathrooms had been damaged in the building process; the delays had lengthened the time the floor directly below construction was exposed to the elements. While she feared that these damages would not be fixed, the PRODEC engineer accompanying us assured her that they would. Since PRODECs aim is to improve the community, they will not leave the school worse than it was before construction began. We plan to keep in touch with the school and find out the end result.


  • Featured Articles 3rd Quarter 2010

    It is important to note that the same beneficiaries, who complained of delays and damage, also said that the projects being carried out are worth the hassle. Projects are often most difficult to carry out in the areas that need them the most, and expenses are higher in remote areas.

    Thus, while the jury is still out on the sustainability of PRODECs community development and empower-ment efforts, PRODEC has potential. It has the potential to allow participants to wield a modicum of control over Canal funds and the improvement of their lives. To fulfill this goal, an increase in public awareness about PRODEC and participation in the decision making process is needed in not just the rural but urban areas. In addition, projects and funds must be scrutinized carefully, and a highly professional staff should be maintained regardless of who occupies the presidency. The more citizens of Panama become aware of and invested in PRODEC, the more likely it is that there will be transparency, accountability, and the optimal use of Canal funds, as well as fulfilling PRODECs promise of a program that is cara a cara.*


    ACP (Panama Canal Authority). 2008. Annual Report. http://www.pancanal.com/eng/general/reporte-anual/2008/flash.html#/6/

    Jackson, Eric. 2008. No bids on presidential slush fund contracts. The Panama News, Volume 14, Number 3 February 3 16. http://www.thepanamanews.com/pn/v_14/issue_03/business_05.html

    Lynch, Linette. 2009. Se inicia investigacin en el PRODEC. La E s t r e l l a , 7 - 2 0 . http://www.laestrella.com.pa/mensual/2009/07/20/contenido/124669.asp

    * face to face

    Michelle Watts and Kimberly Ruff are professors with the American Public University System and the faculty advisors for SIR/GO. They are the authors of Seguridad del Canal de Panam Una Dcada Despus de la Salida de Estados Unidos published in The Air and Space Power

    Journal, Espaol. Their research has been made possible by grants from APUS.

    This article is a modified version of an opinion piece previously published in the Panama News


  • -17-

    Featured Articles 3rd Quarter 2010

    Circle of Violence in South America: Las FARC and the Colombian GovernmentBy Robert Hones

    On the 22th of September, 2010, elements of the Co-lombian Air Force swept into a heavily fortified area in La Ma-carena (Meta) and San Vicen-te del Cagun approximately 200km from Bogot and de-ployed smart bombs on a sus-pected guerrilla camp. One day later, 800 members of Colombias

    army and elite special forces entered the encampment and secured the area.[1]In what has been described as the hardest blow ever in the history of Colombias Las FARC guerrilla movement, Jorge Briceo Suarez, 57, also known as Mono Jojoy, was confirmed dead along with twenty other members of Colombias Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC).[2] Known as the symbol of terror in Colombia, Briceo was credited with the kidnapping of three US hostages, and had accumulated 62 outstanding warrants for his arrest since joining FARC in 1975.[3]

    Indeed, Las FARC has seen a number of setbacks in recent years. On March 1st, 2008, Colom-bian Forces attacked a FARC-EP camp within Ecuador resulting in the death of Ral Reyes, who was the guerrillas international spokesman and second-in-command.[4] Several days later the Colombian Government confirmed the death of Ivan Rios another member of FARCs top leadership.[5] In early 2010, it was estimated that Las FARC had a strength of 9,000 members a number considerably less than the estimated 17,000 in 2001.[6] Santos attributes the reduction of Las FARC by continued pressure by the government which was introduced by the previous administration, and a new policy of reintegration for former guerrillas into society.[7]

    Given these developments, it stands to ask if the world is finally witnessing the demise of South Americas largest and oldest insurgent group. Recent positive developments on behalf of the Colombian government would suggest so, however these successes might be the catalyst to prolonging a 50 year-old conflict. Consider for a moment the consequences of high-aerial bombardment, technologically advanced weapons (such as the smart-bombs which killed Briceo), and improved intelligence. History has shown that a determined combat-ant such as Al-Qaeda or the Taliban in Afghanistan/Pakistan possesses a remarkable ability to adapt to ever-changing tactics. With the introduction of aerial combat the Colombian Government heightens the level of violence and consequently, demands that Las FARC improve their defenses against increased intelligence and devastating aerial bombings.


  • Featured Articles 3rd Quarter 2010


    Indeed, the recent bombings of civilians in up-scale neighborhoods, downtown areas, and the targeting of police/military officers would appear to be the only terrorist alternative open to Las FARC. Until now, Colom-bias Revolutionary Armed Forces have been content to fight a traditional guerrilla war, (abet with universally-condemned kidnappings), yet the introduction of the Governments new strategy may be the worst policy for democratic security introduced to date. Essentially, it feeds a circle of violence that will certainly ensure unbro-ken unless a table for peace is introduced. Until then, events seemingly devastating to FARC such as the death of Briceo will only serve to promote relevance to his replacements due to circumstance.

    What matters to organizations like Las FARC is the continued justification for war, and any strategy of conflict introduced by the Colombian Government will only strengthen an experienced enemy who uses its setbacks to highlight the social and economic injustices unique to Colombia.


    1. Rodriguez, Pablo. Colombia kills FARC leader, striking blow to rebels. APF (Sept. 24, 2010). http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100924/wl_afp/colombiaunrestrebelsmilitary_20100924085555 (accessed Oct. 14, 2010), paragraph 1-3.

    2. Ibid, paragraph 1-3.

    3. Ibid, paragraph 18.

    4. Escobar, Pepe. Colombia: What did Interpol find in the laptops? The Real News (May 22, 2008). http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=7&jumival=1543 (accessed Oct. 14, 2010), paragraph 1.

    5. Housley, Adam. Colombia Rebel Commander Ivan Rios Reported Killed; Cross-Border Tensions Rise. Fox News (March 7, 2008). http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,335880,00.html (accessed Oct. 14, 2010), paragraph 3.

    6. Markey, Patrick. FACTBOX - Key facts about Colombias FARC rebels. Reuters (Mar. 28, 2010). http://www.alertnet.org/the-news/newsdesk/N28219670.htm (accessed Oct. 14, 2010), paragraph 6.

    7. Merco Press. (Sept. 28, 2010). http://en.mercopress.com/2010/09/28/farc-names-new-military-chief-us-has-a-2.5-million-reward-on-his-head (accessed Oct. 14, 2010), paragraph 10.

    Additional References

    Brittain, James J. Revolutionary Social Change in Colombia; The Origin and Direction of the FARC-EP. Pluto Press, 2010

    Brittain, James J. The FARC-EP in Colombia: A Revolutionary Exception in an Age of Imperialist Expansion. Monthly Review Press, 2005

    Marks, Thomas A. Colombian army adaptation to FARC insurgency. Strategic Studies Institute, 2002

  • Nobel Peace Prize Winners on Behalf of Liu Xiaobo

    Source: www.the atlantic.com

    On October 8 2010, the Nobel Committee, despite warnings from China, awarded Liu Xiaobo the Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent commitment for basic human rights in China. Liu currently is in jail and his wife on house arrest in China. The following article by James Fellows links to a letter written by former Nobel Peace Prize winners to the Chinese President request-ing the release of Liu from prison.

    Fifteen past winners of the Nobel Peace Prize have issued a letter to Chinese president Hu Jintao, asking that the newest winner, Liu Xiaobo, be released from his 11-year prison sentence, and that his wife, Liu Xia, be freed from de-facto house arrest. Announcement of the appeal, from the Freedom Now organization can be found here; PDF of the letter here.Let us hope that the overall correlation of forces, foreign and domes-tic, convinces the Chinese leadership that they are bet-ter off letting Liu and his wife go rather than keeping them locked up. (Fallows, 2010)

    Signatory list: Desmond M. Tutu, Carlos Filipe Xi-menes Belo, Jimmy Carter, F.W. de Klerk, Shirin Eba-di, John Hume, The Dalai Lama, Mairead Maguire, Wangari Maathai, David Trimble, Rigoberta Mench Tum, Lech Walesa, Elie Wiesel, Betty Williams, Jody Williams

    James Fallows - James Fallows is a National Correspon-dent for The Atlantic. A 25-year veteran of the magazine and former speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, he is also an instrument-rated pilot and a onetime program designer at Microsoft

    Retrieved from: http://www.theatlantic.com/interna-tional/archive/2010/10/nobel-peace-prize-winners-on-behalf-of-liu-xiaobo-updated/65104/

    Nobel Related News Source: www.aolnews.com

    Another Nobel Prize Laureate, Aung San Suu Kyi was recently released from house arrest in Myanmar earlier this week. She immediately announced to supporters that she would continue to fight for human rights and the rule of law in the military-controlled nation and called for face-to-face talks with the juntas leader.

    She spoke to about 5,000 people who crowded around the dilapidated headquarters of her political party, the first stop after leaving the lakeside residence that had been her prison.

    I believe in human rights and I believe in the rule of law. I will always fight for these things, (Aol News, 2010)

    Retrieved from: http://www.aolnews.com/world/article/aung-san-suu-kyi-pro-democracy-leader-released-by-myanmar-junta/19715444

    Global News Alerts

    Jborzicchi | Dreamstime.com


  • Global News Alerts 3rd Quarter 2010


    Save the Children Reacts to Outcomes of the Seoul

    G20 Summit

    Another area that G-20 leaders agree on is caring for the worlds children. Save the Children, an organiza-tion focused on raising the standard of care for suffer-ing children everywhere, spoke to specific achievements in this area.

    Adrian Lovett, Global Campaign Director, said:

    As this summit concludes, Korea hands over the G20 presidency to France. With this summit, Korea has shown that Asia is the future. France has to prove that Europe is not the past.

    The Seoul Consensus lays strong foundations for a new global structure that could mean a better world for vulnerable children. The foundations are there and the scaffolding is in place. Now the building job must begin, brick by brick. The G20 communiqu clearly states that the poorest countries need growth and they

    need aid too. Leaders must hold themselves to these words. The measure of success of their actions today must be that every child grows up healthy, not hungry, and every country shares in global growth. The eco-nomic crisis has cost the lives of a quarter of a million children. The fundamental test of the Seoul Consensus should be in how many childrens lives it saves. A sus-tained reduction in child mortality is the best indicator of the development.

    The G20 have said that what they promise, they will deliver. In September 2009 the G20 endorsed a $22 billion Global Food Security Initiative, yet the initiative still lacks the necessary money and a clear strategy for where and how it will be spent. Its vital the multi-year action plans announced today deliver on promises like this.

    This G20 summit could have ignored development completely. The fact that it did not is a tribute to the Korean hosts and to the millions of people around the world who will not let a meeting of world leaders pass without action for the worlds poorest children. The ba-ton now passes to President Sarkozy. He needs to grab it and run.

    Retrieved from: http://www.interaction.org/article/save-childrenreacts-outcomes-seoul-g20-summit

    Celebrations as last trapped Chile miner is rescued

    Source: www.bbc.co.uk

    The last of the 33 miners trapped deep underground in northern Chile for more than two months has been rescued. Luis Urzua, the shift supervisor who was credited with helping the men survive the first 17 days before rescue teams made contact, was greeted by his family and President Sebastian Pinera.

    The rescued miners have been taken to hospital. All have severe dental infections, and some have eye problems. One man has been diagnosed with pneumonia, although his condition is not thought to be serious. Health Minister Jaime Manalich stressed that all ap-peared to be in far better condition than expected.

    The men had been trapped underground since 5 August, when a rock fall caused a tunnel to collapse.

    They were experiencing a kind of rebirth, President Pinera said in a televised address after Mr Urzuas ascent. When the last miner exited the depths of the mine, I was moved as every Chilean was (Buschschuter, 2010).

    Buschschuter, Vanessa. 2010. BBC Online. Celebration as last trapped

  • Global News Alerts 3rd Quarter 2010


    Indonesias Volcano Erupts Again

    Still recovering from the earlier eruption, on November 5, 2010, Indonesia was hit again by another.

    MAGUWOHARJO, Indonesia A powerful overnight eruption of Mount Merapi created chaos for Indonesias di-saster response effort on Friday after an explosion of hot gases and debris killed scores of people and sent more than 160,000 villagers fleeing to underprepared evacuation camps. At least 64 people were killed by the latest eruption, which was by far the largest since the volcano on cen-tral Java Island started spewing ash and gas on Oct. 26. The latest eruption brings the total death toll to 109, said Andi Ari-ef, the disaster adviser to President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. The eruption sent a pyroclastic flow of superheated gases and debris racing down Merapis slopes. Tens of thousands rushed to abandon camps previously con-sidered safe as ash and hot debris rained down as far as the central Javanese city of Yogyakarta. Most of those killed were villagers en-gulfed by a rush of hot gases that hit the hamlets of Argomulyo and Bronggang

    about 12 kilometers, or 7.5 miles, from the volcanos rim, blasting homes, people and animals, said Sutopo Purwo Nugro-ho, the disaster preparedness chief of the National Disaster Management Agency. (Belford, 2010)Belford, Aubrey. 2010. New York Times. Indonesia Volcano Erupts Again Re-trieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/06/world/asia/06indo.html?_r=1&ref=indonesia

    Cecilia Lim | Dreamstime.com

  • GO Global OP-EDThe Iranian Nuclear Development Crisis

    Jeff Heuermann, SIR/GO Op-Ed Writer

    Throughout history there have been many crises that have captured the attention of world leaders. Obviously both world wars themselves were crises. The events that led to the wars, however, may have been serious situations in time but may not have been global crises serious enough for world war in order to resolve them. Nonetheless, to define the Iranian nuclear development as a regional or global crisis is a stretch, with the one exception of Israel. There are many issues intertwined in the situation and global leaders should concern themselves to bring a resolution to all issue areas as an alternative of attempting to resolve the single threat issue of Iranian nuclear development in a solitary manner.

    There are a wide array of scenarios that could develop as a conse-quence to Iranian nuclear weapons development, if in fact that is the ultimate goal of the Iranian re-gime. The International Relations realist paradigm assumes nation-states are the primary players in international affairs and state interests dictate their actions. If the Iranian state does indeed fit

    the realist paradigm, it is not a far reaching supposition the Iranian regime would be developing nuclear weapons to guarantee an increased regional authority and global Islamic influence. As well as increasing its regional and global influence, a successful Iranian nuclear weapons program could instigate a regional nuclear weapons arms race within the Persian Gulf and wider Middle East region.

    The increase of Iranian influence in regional and global affairs is, in itself, not a huge detriment to society. However, employment of a potentially increased re-


    ____________________- a crisis is brewing between Israel and Iran with the potential for consider-able consequences regionally and internationally.

  • GO Global Op-Ed 3rd Quarter 2010


    gional influence could severely diminish any democratic advancement within Af-ghanistan and Iraq. Further, increased Iranian regional influence could present a potential challenge with a power shift from the Sunni to the Shia. An increase in power and influence of the Iranian regime would undoubtedly be used to manipu-late such a shift in stature for the Shia Islamic sect. What does this mean? In Iraq the Sunni held state power for quite a few decades over the Shia and the Shia have been a sort of ally to the United States; however, if Iran can successfully influence the Iraqi Shia the US would lose a prominent, albeit shaky, ally within the state. There would also be added tensions within the Persian Gulf and Middle East re-gions for prominent Sunni state leaders and governments.

    The various potential consequences of Iranian nuclear weapons development may be serious on many different regional and global levels and, especially, for Israeli survival. The idea of Irans nuclear development as a crisis could be easily viewed in such a way by the Israeli state. The Iranian regime has been openly verbally hostile towards Israel while supporting terrorist organizations financially, with arms, and military and terrorist training. Israel has been the outcast state within the interna-tional system for quite some time but it would be hard to criticize Israel for launch-ing pre-emptive military actions against Iran even by those states not in favor of Is-raeli foreign or domestic policies. Nonetheless, it is hard to understand the restraint in which Israel has maintained given the estimated timeframe in which Iran could have a developed nuclear weapon system. At the most a crisis is brewing between Israel and Iran with the potential for considerable consequences regionally and in-ternationally.

    It is imperative that the global community act in accordance with the situation but the conditions should not be allowed to spiral out of control before the situation is actually a qualified crisis to the world community. Throughout history there have been many instances of situations that could have been viewed as such, although increased precedence was placed on the situation creating an unnecessary crisis lead-ing to a needless war. While I am not personally an anti-war or pro-war proponent, I believe the situation with Iran should be handled with care and without a crisis approach. There are many potential outcomes of a nuclear armed Iran but there are also many consequences of a US-led, Israel-led, or wider regional war with Iran. To world leaders: resolve the situation as a circumstance involving multiple issues, not as a single-issue situation or as a developed crisis.

  • The International Presence in Haiti: Friends or Foes?Marleen Julien

    Last week a group of Haitians marched the streets of Cit So-leil protesting against the Haitian government, the United Nations and oth-er foreign organizations that have been operating in Haiti. This outcry is in re-sponse to the recent cholera epidemic that has taken the lives of hundreds of people and continues to spread rapidly through-out the small island by the day. There has been an allegation that the source of the disease is a Nepalese peacekeeping mis-sion that is perched above a river connected to the Artibonite River, where the out-break began. While the UN denies this allegation, the strain of cholera that was identified in Haiti is the same as the one found by researchers during an outbreak in South-East Asia, where cholera is endemic. The Haitian people claim that the Nep-alese forces, which arrived in the month of October, have been dumping human waste near the river that the locals use to drink, bathe, and cook. The Haitian people are filled with fear and anger. Many go as far as saying that the only way for the country to take the steps towards development is for the international organizations and for-eign non-governmental organizations to leave the country because, like the Haitian government, they have not done enough to protect the Haitian people. Ten months after the earthquake, the situation in Haiti remains desperate despite their strong presence. Now the question we must ask is would Haiti be able to stand on its own two feet without the aid of the international community? Over the past three decades, Haiti has been marked by constant political instability and a long trail of natural ca-tastrophes. Political events such as the anti-Duvalier movement in the 1980s and the coup dtat against President Aristide in 2004 had a permanent negative effect on the political, economic and social conditions of the country. Just two years ago, Haiti was hit by a flood that killed an estimated 8,000 people and wiped out 70% of the coun-trys crop. This flood attacked the main source of revenue for the Haitian people and the fragile economy collapsed. To face the situation of this weakened state and society, the intervention of international organizations and foreign non-governmental organizations was necessary. The presence of organizations such as UNICEF, World Food Program, Catholic Relief Services, Plan International, Save the Children, to name a few, became permanent and essential for the survival of the Haitian people. After the earthquake of January 12, 2010, there was a boom of new NGOs from all over the world. The catastrophic earthquake moved countries, as well as millions of individuals, to

    GO Global Op-Ed


    3rd Quarter 2010

  • make generous donations. Now with collective assets that far surpass the annual budget of the Haitian govern-ment, these organizations are very powerful and play an important role in all sectors including health and educa-tion. Despite their efforts, however, the Haitian people continue to live in unimaginable conditions. Perhaps their very numbers and lack of organization is what makes them somewhat inefficient. However, it would be completely unfair to say that these organizations are useless. The earthquake was extremely powerful and considering that the Haitian infrastructure was almost non-existent, it disappeared. The intervention of the UN agencies and foreign NGOs became more important than ever. The NGOs provided shelter to the millions of people who became homeless. For the many schools that collapsed, they provided tents, training, and school supplies so that the students are able to continue to go to school. They provided portable water and food on daily basis. Most importantly, they built field hospitals that provided emergency and comprehensive primary medical care in the camps where hundreds of thousands of displaced Haitians are living. One of the greatest fears after the earthquake was that an outbreak of disease would occur. The earthquake victims live in tent cities in poverty and poor sanitation, making all of the conditions under which diseases could have flourished long before the re-

    cent outbreak. It is thanks to their efforts that cholera is the only epidemic that has affected the country 10 months later. Yet the Haitian people are angry because more than 1 million people still have little access to food and water and have to scrape by survive. Furthermore, the cholera outbreak has added more to the countrys many problems. Many Haitians claim that the presence of these organiza-tions has done more harm than good. The most obvious downside to the humanitarian efforts in Haiti is that the influx of aid and money has hurt the local market. The first negative effect is the disparity in purchasing power between the for-eign aid workers and the Haitian people. The numerous aid workers are paid excessive salaries compared to Haitians and are able to pay a lot more money for the most basic commodities. As a result, the cost of living has increased and the purchasing power of the general

    population decreased. Also, the flood of food aid has discouraged lo-cal production more than ever before. How could the farmers compete with the international donors when their food is free? This has consequently shut down the agricultural sector, which is the main source of employment in Haiti. Finally, the main reason why the international organizations have not been as efficient as they could be is the siphonic way in which most of the aid money goes back to the developed donor countries. As a Haitian man put it, The money that comes to Haiti goes right back where it came from. That is because a large portion of that money is spent in excessive salaries for the foreign aid workers and their lavish lifestyles in the poor country. In addition to the cholera outbreak, these are reasons that the Haitian people are demand that the UN forces and other foreign organizations leave the country. As we asked earlier, would Haiti be able to stand on its own two feet without the aid of the international community? The answer is no. Haiti is commonly referred to as the Republic of NGOs and it is certain that the dependency on international aid impedes its develop-ment. However, Haitians have failed to prove that they are able to sustain on their own. The Haitian government is incapable of provid-ing the infrastructure that the country desperately needs and the international community has filled that void to a certain extent. While Haitians are obviously the solution to Haitis many problems, the presence of the international community will continue to be justified until Haitians are able to get organized and find a real alternative that will remove the band aids of the international community and begin the real healing process. Eliminating the international aid is one thing, but the biggest challenge for Haiti is to combat internal problems like corruption and political instability. That is the sure way for sustainable development in Haiti.


    Photography by Marleen Julien

    GO Global Op-Ed


    3rd Quarter 2010

  • Past LecturesCareer Center


    Career Center: Improve Your Chances of EmploymentBy Joshua Maes

    There are many ways to improve your chances of employment. One of the best ways is by spicing up your resume and, if necessary your cover letter that shows all applicable experience, but most especially has all the correct and up to date contact information on it. If you are unsure about the quality of your resume, have no fear, AMU/APU has a dedicated team willing to assist all potential career seekers enhance their resumes. AMU/APU has also started a site through the Office of Student Affairs called the Professional Development program which will provide students with the resources needed to obtain professional opportunities while attend-ing APUS as well as assistance in carving out a career path (APUS 2010). These resources obtained from AMU/APU include internships, schola-ships as well as career resources and opportunities.

    Another way to improve your chances of employment is by gaining face to face contact with an employer. The dawning of the internet age has allowed this process to become much easier with social networking sites, which allows individuals the opportunity to give that first, lasting impression to an employer. While these sites make it easier to make the necessary professional contacts, they can also be detrimental to a career. Make sure that if you have an account with one of these sites, personal or professional, that you keep the content and photos commensurate to the type of person you are portraying to your poten-tial employer. Also, always remember the rule about being mindful of what you are posting, i.e. OPSEC, especially if you are serving in the military or in support of military/government operations. My advice would be to stick to a professional networking site, one provided by your institution, i.e. AMU/APU Alumni Networking/Mentor Network or NACELink.

    Other ways to improve your chances of employment are to gain invalu-able experience during time volunteering or during paid/unpaid internships,

  • Career Center


    many of which can be found on USA JOBS with the U.S. Government as well as in the Civilian Sector.


    APUS. Professional Development at APUS. 2010. http://www.apus.edu/student-affairs-center/professional-development/index.htm

    (accessed July 20, 2010).

    Potential EmployersPotential employers range anywhere from Foreign Service organizations, state/federal government, other governmental agencies (OGA), the United Nations, the private sector (international business, non-profit organizations, etc.), high school and university teaching/mentoring, banks, international organizations, import/export organizations, travel industry, business and industry or public re-

    lations firms such as:Accenture

    American Foreign Service AssociationCentral Intelligence Agency (CIA)Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA)

    Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)Footprints Recruiting Inc.

    One Small Planet SOSi Ltd.Spectrum

    Stanley AssociatesThe Peace Corps.

    The United NationsTrinity Technology Group

    U.S. State Department


  • Career Center


    Searchable Job TitlesArchivist


    Foreign Affairs AnalystForeign Affairs SpecialistForeign Service OfficerImmigration Specialist

    Import/Export CoordinatorInternational Bank Trainee

    International LawyerInternational Public Administrator

    International Relations OfficerInternational Relations ProfessorIntelligence Research Specialist

    Intelligence SpecialistInterpreter/Translator

    JournalistLanguage InstructorLanguage Specialist

    Legislative CorrespondentMarket Research Analyst

    Trade Specialist Research Asst.

    Additional Researchhttps://apus-csm.symplicity.com/students/





  • Past LecturesInternational Challenge Answers(from Reuters AlertNet: www.alertnet.org/quiz/128776508875.htm)

    When did the people of East Timor vote for their countrys independence? A. 1999Rights groups in East Timor warn that anger over the threatened eviction of some 500 people from a down-town Dili neighborhood could spill over into conflict amid fears the government is preparing to take back more land. The community has lived in houses used by former Indonesian government officials since 1999, after East Timor voted overwhelmingly for independence in a referendum that led to violence and widespread displacement.

    What is the only means of earning a living for the poor inhabitants of Ashar Chor a split of land in the Bay of Bengal? A. Drying fishAshar Chor is a split of land in the Bay of Bengal, in Bangladeshs southern coastal region. Like many parts of the low-lying country much of which is no more than a meter above sea level it is prone to natural disas-ters. In Ashar Chor the only means of earning an income is drying fish. The whole community depends on it, but unpredictable weather is hampering business.

    What is the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) Index? A. A report on press freedomRwanda dismissed on Thursday a media watchdog report on press freedom which ranked the central Afri-can nation with authoritarian states such as Burma and North Korea. The Reporters Without Borders (RSF) index placed Rwanda 169 out of 178 nations, its worst position since the index was launched in 2002.

    Which country is receiving the largest amount of foreign donations in Africa? A. EthiopiaEthiopia receives more aid than any other country in Africa. Development aid to Ethiopia doubled between 2004 and 2008 because of swollen Western aid budgets strongly focused on helping Ethiopia achieve the Millennium Development Goals. The eight goals were set globally in 2000 and include having global poverty and hunger, improving access to education and cutting child death rates by 2015. Ethiopia is also strategically important to the West because it borders Somalia, which is largely controlled by radical Islamist insurgents.

    How many hunger strikes has Guillermo Farinas winner of the European Union human rights prize- conduct-ed in the last two decades? A. 20The European Parliament awarded its top human rights prize on Thursday to Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas, whose hunger strike this year helped pressure Havana into releasing political prisoners. Farinas, a 48-year-old psychologist, journalist and former soldier, has conducted more than 20 hunger strikes in the last two decades for various causes, including a campaign against Internet censorship.

    What is the ghutka very common among Pakistani? A. A concoction of tobacco, betel nuts and flavor.Gutkha is a powdery, granular light brownish to white substance. Within moments, the gutkha begins to dissolve and turn deep red in color. It imparts upon its user a buzz somewhat more intense than that of to-bacco.

    Quiz Answers