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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Profs, experts to talk legacy of Scowcroft

The Scowcroft Institute will hold a conference that examines of one of the most influential figures in the United States’ national security Tuesday.  

Various ambassadors, professors and national security experts will come together in Hagler Auditorium to give presentations on the legacy and international policy contributions of Lieutenant General Brent Scowcroft. Speakers will touch on the details of Scowcroft’s life and career as well as the importance of the National Security Advisor.

Though he was never a National Security Advisor, Scowcroft was an Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs under Presidents Gerald Ford and George H. W. Bush, and served under Henry Kissinger as the Vice Chairman of Kissinger Associates, Inc.

“The intent of the event is for us to celebrate the guy who has probably had the most influence on the National Security Advisor position in the history of the United States, in my personal opinion,” said Don Bailey, and assistant director of the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs Class of 1978.

Bailey said Texas A&M students and other attendees will have the opportunity learn about national security and Scowcroft’s operating style never and will also be able to glean more information from 20-minute question and answer sessions that follow each speaker presentation. 

Travis Oliver Beach, political science senior, said Scowcroft’s methods in solving international issues can benefit students’ discussions of long-term solutions to global problems. 

“Whether you are going into the public service sector or not, it is extremely important for students to have some understanding of national security and international affairs as we become a more globalized society,” Beach said. 

Political science junior Rachel Thompson agreed with Beach’s sentiment. She said the world will need to come together as crucial issues become more global.

“While it is often easy to lose sight of the fact that we are not the only individuals on this planet, we do live in a global economy and our government is very much involved and depended on in the international community,” Thompson said. “Students are in a unique position because we are just beginning to become a part of the public, and starting our international education young will help us have a better understanding of the issues.”

Scowcroft encountered these global issues through his positions in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Assistant Air Attaché in the American Embassy in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, and as the president and founder of The Forum for International Policy.

According to Bailey, some of Scowcroft’s most influential work came when working under President H. W. Bush in dealing with the fall of the Berlin Wall and Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.

Scowcroft’s close collaboration with President H. W. Bush started a close relationship that continues to this day. As such, the former President sent a letter that will be read by Ambassador Ryan Crocker to open the conference.

“Brent Scowcroft is one of my heroes — he and Bush 41,” Bailey said. “So I’m really interested in hearing Bush 41’s thoughts on Brent Scowcroft, too. I’ve had the opportunity to work with General Scowcroft over my four years here working at an institute named after him, and he is one of the sharpest minds that I’ve ever had the opportunity to work with in my life, while at the same time he is just as gentle and kind.”

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