Bill Richardson to Keynote March 11 Conference

Bill Richardson to Keynote March 11 Conference

While a candidate for president in October, the New Mexico governor unveiled his Latin American policy at UCLA. He returns next Tuesday for a conference sponsored by the Burkle Center.

UCLA event on "Rogue States" features Gen. Wesley K. Clark and other foreign policy experts.


By Elizabeth Kivowitz

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and former Gen. Wesley Clark, two prominent Democrats with deep foreign policy experience, will be offering advice on how the next president might deal with so-called "rogue nations" at the UCLA Burkle Center for International Relation's second annual conference on March 11.
"U.S. Foreign Policy Toward Rogue States: Engage, Isolate, or Strike?" will bring together experts from the military, academia, think tanks and government to address the following questions: What is a "rogue state," and is this a useful concept? When is engagement, isolation or military action most effective? What lessons have been learned from U.S. policy toward Libya, China and South Africa? How should the U.S. approach Iran, North Korea and Pakistan?
Richardson will be the keynote speaker at the conference. Before serving as New Mexico's governor, he was a U.S. congressman, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and U.S. secretary of energy. He has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize four times, for negotiating the release of hostages, American servicemen and political prisoners in North Korea, Iraq and Cuba. In 2007, he negotiated a 60-day cease fire in war-torn Darfur following direct talks with rebel leaders and the president of Sudan.
"The United States needs a new realism in its foreign policy if it is to meet the challenges of this changed world," Richardson said. "Such a new realism must harbor no illusions about the importance of a strong military in a dangerous world, but it must also understand the importance of diplomacy and multilateral cooperation in a world in which what goes on inside of one country has profound impacts on other countries.
"A new realist foreign policy will require that the United States alter its present course in several ways. First and foremost, the United States must repair its alliances," he said. "The United States cannot lead other nations toward solutions to shared problems if these other nations do not trust U.S. leadership. U.S. policymakers need to restore respect and appreciation for U.S. allies and for shared democratic values in order to coordinate international efforts for global problems."
Clark, who is a senior fellow at the Burkle Center, will make opening and closing remarks and serve on a panel titled "Prescriptions for the Next Administration."
During his 34 years of military service, Clark fought in Vietnam; helped train, organize and equip the U.S. Army; played a leading role in the negotiations that ended conflict in Bosnia; and, in his final duty as NATO supreme allied commander for Europe, commanded the forces of 19 nations in a successful military campaign to end ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia.
"The U.S. has faced remarkable foreign policy challenges in the last few years, including intervention in Iraq, engagement with North Korea, and new concerns from states we have traditionally isolated, like Iran," Clark said. "Our nation's interaction with these states has become one of the most pressing issues of our time. I'm looking forward to working with the experts from the military, government and academia who will gather at the Burkle conference to come up with smart policy for the next administration."
Among other scheduled conference participants are retired U.S. Army Gen. Leon LaPorte; Feroz Khan, a former Pakistan army officer; Henry T. Wooster, deputy director of the Office of Iranian Affairs at the U.S. State Dept.; Adam J. Szubin, director of foreign assets control at the U.S. Treasury Dept.; Kantathi Suphamongkhon, former foreign minister of Thailand; and Kal Raustiala, director of the Burkle Center and an expert in international cooperation and conflict.
Representatives from prominent think thanks include Robert Litwak, director of international security studies at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars of the Smithsonian Institution; Susan Shirk, director of the University of California Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation; Danielle Pletka, vice president for foreign and defense policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute; and Robert H. Mnookin, director of the Harvard Negotiation Research Project. Moderators include Doyle McManus and Maggie Farley of the Los Angeles Times.
The conference will be held at UCLA's James West Alumni Center from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Richardson will deliver the keynote address at 11:30 a.m.
To register and view a complete schedule and list of participants, visit
To view a video introduction to the conference from Gen. Clark, visit
The UCLA Burkle Center for International Relations was created in 1979 with the mission of fostering research on and promoting discussion of international relations, U.S. foreign policy, and complex issues of global cooperation and conflict.
UCLA is California's largest university, with an enrollment of nearly 37,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The UCLA College of Letters and Science and the university's 11 professional schools feature renowned faculty and offer more than 300 degree programs and majors. UCLA is a national and international leader in the breadth and quality of its academic, research, health care, cultural, continuing education and athletic programs. Four alumni and five faculty have been awarded the Nobel Prize.

Published: Tuesday, March 11, 2008