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Colorado Springs World Affairs Council Interview on Colorado Public Radio

Turkey is waging an offensive in neighboring Syria. The target: Kurdish fighters. The Kurds played a central role in helping the United States take on ISIS. Still, Turkey’s move came with U.S. help. Is this an example of the Trump Administration turning its back on an ally or choosing to stand alongside a different one?

Karl Schneider, board member of the Colorado Springs World Affairs Council, says the answer is complicated.

Listen here:

High Symposium Registration Now Open!

We are excited to share the news about our 2019 High School Symposium “Responding to the Global Challenge of Migration: What Factors Should Influence U.S. Policies?”
This longstanding annual all-day event is is our most popular educational outreach for high school students! Teachers, register today and parents, make sure your child’s school is registered!


The Colorado Springs World Affairs Council has had the pleasure of hosting Dr. Ray Raymond, an expert on UK affairs, on several occasions.  As our members no doubt are aware, events on this topic are currently moving fast. Dr. Raymond has generously shared his observations on the current state of Brexit for the benefit of our members and followers.

By Dr. Ray Raymond

Many people have asked me ask me how will this Brexit mess get resolved. I have replied that I had no idea, but that the unexpected rather than the inevitable could occur and when we least expect it. I share these thoughts in the hope that they might be useful.

Here are the basic facts :  
1. There is not a majority in Parliament for May’s Brexit plan.
2. There is not a majority in Parliament for a hard “No Deal” Brexit.
3. The EU will not grant any substantive concessions to May. Some cosmetic language perhaps, but there is no appetite in the EU to make any alterations to the withdrawal agreement.
4. The Conservative Party parliamentary party is deeply split; a narrow majority of Conservative party members want a clean and if necessary hard Brexit.
5. The Labor party is deeply split on Brexit.
6. The DUP in Northern Ireland is adamantly opposed to the Irish backstop.
7. A majority in Parliament believe that Theresa May has little respect for the institution.  

Turning to Theresa May’s strategy, here is my reading of it for what it is worth :  In the UK, I think she is playing it long  trying to frame the debate – as she will this week – as a choice between her plan and chaos. At bottom, it’s a scare tactic. She knows that that strategy will fail next week. At the same time, within the EU I think she plans to use that Parliamentary defeat as a weapon to try to wring more concessions from the EU arguing that it is in their economic self-interest to avoid a no-deal Brexit.  And it is. Germany,for example, sells more cars in the UK than it does in China and would not wish to see that endangered. But for now, I don’t see Chancellor Merkel making any concessions.

This is a high-risk strategy. There is no guarantee that Theresa May can survive a major defeat  in Parliament. After all, a third of the Parliamentary party voted to dump her and Jeremy Corbyn’s primary goal is unseat her government and he may seize the opportunity to press for a vote of confidence. This said, Theresa May has one ace up her sleeve : Having survived her party’s vote of no confidence a couple of weeks ago, Conservative party rules stipulate that she cannot be challenged again for a year.

As for Parliament next week, there will be so many different amendments and different options floated. The main ones will be a permanent customs union, staying in the Single Market, or a second referendum. The problem is that none of them command a majority in Parliament.

There are sensible options out there – using the European Court of Justice’s ruling on Article 50 to slow down or temporarily halt the withdrawal so as to buy more time to avoid a hard “No Deal” Brexit and until the country has worked out what it wants. And the only conclusive way to do that would be a second referendum. Theresa May is ruling this out now but once her plan is rejected by Parliament, and they are all facing the chaos of a  hard “No Deal” Brexit, common sense just might prevail.

CSWAC is Hiring!

The Colorado Springs World Affairs council seeks a part-time Program Manager for our International Leadership Visitor Program (IVLP), which is one key local program element of Colorado Springs World Affairs Council. This candidate will work in tandem with the Committee for International Visitors (CIV) and its volunteer Program Officers.

Applications accepted through January 25, 2019.

For more information, please refer to the Job Description.

Teachers: Plan Now for the Annual High School Symposium September 20!

Never has there been so much information available to almost everyone, and never has it been so difficult to sift the wheat from the chaff, the true from the false, the important from the insignificant, reliable reports from mere rumors, news from propaganda.

This year, the Colorado Springs World Affairs Council’s annual all-day symposium for area high school students and teachers will examine the role of media in understanding news about foreign affairs.

Join us for the annual Symposium for High School Students Understanding Foreign Affairs:  Where Do You Get Your News? on September 20, 2018.  More information at the event webpage HERE


Academic World Quest Winners!

Congratulations to Air Academy High School, winners of the 2018 Academic WorldQuest Regional Competition!  Air Academy will travel to Washington, DC to compete in the National Competition on April 28, 2018. This year, teams from eight local high schools competed.

Second and third place went to Rampart High School and Woodland Park High School. Congratulations to all for a job well done!

Air Academy HS with Coach Renee Motter

Rampart HS

Woodland Park HS