Saturday, September 5, 2009

NATO's future

This week I attended a seminar on 3D in the Hague, the Netherlands. 3D is a now famous concept that wishes to combine the works of Defence, Diplomacy and Development in the best possible way in conflict areas. At this conference I was hoping to be informed on the successes of 3D and the development this concept had gone through in the latter years, but to my surprise and sadness the most confusion was araised about what the concept really is, who 'owns' it and which country executes in the best way.

Please let me say this: Nobody 'owns' 3D, it is not a model or a template that can be executed in every conflict siutuation or area and 3D is so much more than the 3 D's that we were talking about. One of the speakers, a former commander of a Provincial Reconstruction Team in Afghanistan was clearly upset about all the other politicians, diplomats, historians who were present as speakers at this seminar. He was the only one who really kwew what it was all about: an holistic approach. 3D is at least another few more D's and the rest of the alfabet in order to assist, develop, help, educate, safeguard, listen, and a whole lot more at the service of the Afghan people. Because these people is what it is all about: to make them proud of their own lives and own country.

I was glad to know that this Dutch commander, who was really executing the 3D concept had been to Afghanistan and was working there, and not the other speakers.

YATA Newsletter July 2009 and Call For Contributions for the September Edition

Dear friends,

The July Edition of the YATA Newsletter has just been released. You can download it on our website.
The September edition will be out soon. Please send your photos, reports, articles and contributions to until September 15th.

Best regards,

Samuel de Paiva Pires
YATA Vp for Communications and Programming

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Putin's letter to the Poles

Janek Skarzynski/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

On Aug. 31, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin sent a letter to the Polish people where he undertake an historical effort to analyze W.W.II events, 70 years after its beginning.

The full text can be seen here, but below I have pasted a couple remarkable sencences.
"There is no doubt that one can have all the reasons to condemn the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact concluded in August of 1939."
"The people of Russia, whose destiny was crippled by the totalitarian regime, fully understand the sensitiveness of Poles about Katyn where thousands of Polish servicemen lie. Together we must keep alive the memory of the victims of this crime."
Tones and words must have been cautiously chosen, as to avoid a broaden historical revisionism on the World War II events! Indeed, The final idea one might get from the letter is a mix of history remembrance and veiled apologizes.
How will Polish government - but expecially Polish people - react is hard to say. Surely the letter can be either criticized for beign just a public diplomacy effort to get a better bargaining position with US Administration, or considered as a genuine reapprochement between to old adversaries. Only time will tell!