Nation & World

Security expert speaks on international safety

POSTED AT 12:00 AM ON Feb. 20, 2004 

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When Sir Timothy Garden last spoke on "International Security and the New Century" at IU three years ago, the world was a very different place.

"In Feb. 2001, I don't think anyone thought international security would change quite so much," Garden said. "Since then, we've all come to know what fanatical terrorists can do. As I said then, predicting the future is always a somewhat hazardous affair."

Garden is an international security expert who served in Great Britain's Royal Air Force for more than three decades, reaching the rank of British air marshal, the equivalent of a three-star general. Currently, he is a visiting professor at the Centre for Defence Studies at King's College in London but makes time for speaking engagements around the world.

"Timothy Garden is very much in demand these days," said Brian Winchester, director for the Center for the Study of Global Change. "I'm amazed at the kind of schedule he keeps."

Garden spoke about U.S. and European relations in the age of terrorism Thursday at the IU Law School.

Much of the lecture focused on the future or NATO. Garden noted that following the Sept. 11 attacks, the article that stated an attack on one member nation was an attack on all was invoked, but the U.S. still chose to invade Afghanistan with only help from the United Kingdom. NATO only assisted in peacekeeping after the fall of the Taliban.

"NATO actually cleans up, but it's preparing itself for what the U.S. is only going to do at chosen times with chosen allies," Garden said.

Many audience members found the British viewpoint enlightening.

"It was really informative to hear the point-of-view from the other side of the Atlantic," senior John Idlewine said.

Garden also discussed the growing tensions between the U.S. and the European Union before the invasion of Iraq.

"The new Bush administration had a style of diplomacy that took a little while to get used to in Europe," he said. "Whatever (the case for war's) merits, personally, I think it was incompetent diplomacy and dirty politics on both sides."

Despite his feelings before the war, he said it is important for Iraq to be properly rebuilt now.

"We need the U.N. to make sure the government is legitimate and representative of the people," he said. "It's not going to be easy to make it a democratic model for the rest of the region."

-- Contact staff writer Chris Freiberg at wfreiber@indiana.edu.

 

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