Dialogues are designed to bring students at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, in touch with their counterparts around the world and let the young men and women debate the questions of mutual interest. Connected via Internet, students talk about international and local issues facing people in different countries, explore their differences, and identify points of agreement. The exchange is facilitated by civic culture and social science educators who identify discussion topics, help students formulate their positions, and teach them to look critically at the pressing issues of the day. The dialogue questions and student answers are posted on the site of the Center for Democratic, the UNLV institution promoting civic education and civility in public discourse through research, scholarly exchange, and community-based programs. The first crosscultural dialogue addressed the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York City that shook the United States on September 11, 2001, and the Nord-Ost Siege that lead to numerous casualties in Russia’s capital Moscow on October 10, 2002. Excerpts from this dialogue can be found here: “Dialogue on Terrorism: 9/11 & 10/23.”
Dialogue on Iraq, United States, and the United Nations
Iraq, United States, and the United Nations is the topic of a crosscultural dialogue that links the U.S. students with their coutnerparts in Germany and Russia. Participants will join issues on the following questions:
- What are the conditions under which the United Nations authorizes one country to attack another?
- Could you give examples when such an attack was consistent with the U.N. regulations and when it was not?
- Did the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council always follow international laws when they send their troops to other countries?
- Do you think five members of the U.N. Security Council with the veto power would have ever agreed to start a military operation against Iraq?
- What were the reasons the U.S. gave for invading Iraq, do any of these reasons have merit, was the U.S. justified to take military actions?
- Should the U.S. have secured the NATO approval before going to war in Iraq, can the rift between NATO members be healed?
- Do you think that in the long run, the Iraqi people will be better off with Saddam Hussein removed from power?
- Some people say that the U.S., the only superpower left in the world, is a modern-day empire -- do you agree?
- If the U.S. can start war without the U.N. approval, do other countries have the right to do the same?
- Do you envision a situation when the U.S. withdraws from the United Nations and conducts its foreign policy without regard for international laws?
* Crosscultural Dialogues is the program sponsored by the UNLV Center for Democratic Culture. It is brings students at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, with their counterparts around the world and let the young men and women debate the questions of mutual interest. If you have an interest in this program, please contact the CDC board of directors: firstname.lastname@example.org.