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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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Tear down this wall’

Tanner+Garza+--+THE+BATTALION
Tanner Garza — THE BATTALION

The Bush School will present the fall of the Berlin Wall through the lens of practitioners in Europe at the time.
Foreign dignitaries, U.S. officials and scholars from all over the world will speak at the Texas A&M Bush School of Government and Public Affairs’ conference, “25th Anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall and the Liberation of Eastern Europe.”
“The purpose of this is celebratory, to celebrate the president’s role but also to have people understand the details,” said Andrew Natsios, director of the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs and an executive professor at the Bush School. “We are having some of the historical figures, both from Germany and the United States, that participated in orchestrating this.”
Ryan Crocker, Bush School dean and executive professor, said this event deviates from traditional discussion of the topic.
“What makes this event unique is there have been a lot of conferences on the fall of the wall, and the liberation of Europe,” Crocker said. “But we have a particular focus on European participation.”
German journalists and scholars will moderate the panels, and many of the panelists represent the perspectives of other countries, Natsios said.
Individuals such as Elmar Brok of the European Parliament; Horst Teltschik, former security advisor to German Chancellor Helmut Kohl; and Sebastian Huluban, former Romanian Secretary of Defense and Security Policy, will discuss their sides of the story.
There will also be American panelists who were present in other countries during the fall of the wall and the period leading up to it, including Larry Napper, a Bush School senior lecturer and a retired U.S. ambassador who was on the ground in Romania during the fall of the wall.
“The idea is to get the perspective of American practitioners, who were working in government in some capacity during this era of 1989,” Napper said.
During this conference, President George H.W. Bush will be the first American to receive the Schuman award, said Ryan Crocker, Dean of the Bush School. The Schuman award is the highest award presented by the European Union. This event will serve to broaden discussion of the Berlin Wall beyond American perspectives.
“Collectively we have tended to look at this through an American lens,” Crocker said. “The effort here is to broaden that focus and bring in European perspectives, and I don’t think anything like this has been done before.”
The panels will take place Monday at the Annenberg Conference Center. Tickets are on sale online.

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