Save the Date for this most interesting presentation on….

The Day We Narrowly Averted a

Nuclear Armageddon

with

Dr. Tyrus W. Cobb

The Ramada, Friday, April 7, 2017, 9:00 a.m.

At the Height of the Cold War, the U.S. and the Soviet Union came dangerously close to an all-out nuclear exchange. The near-apocalyptic 1983 confrontation came as a result of a number of factors, primarily an aging and paranoid Soviet leadership increasingly inclined to “worst-case analyses” that interpreted American actions in the most threatening manner. However, the Reagan administration also fed into this paranoia by ill-advised comments by senior leaders (e.g., Secretary of State Haig threatening to fire a “nuclear warning shot across the bow!”) and military exercises that culminated in the launch of a preemptive nuclear strike.

The little known 1983 crisis did not happen overnight, but came as a result of poor communications, unreliable intelligence analyses, a lack of understanding of each country’s intentions, and a failure to comprehend what certain actions and statements might convey to an aging and isolated Soviet leadership. All of this combined to create an impression in the Kremlin that a major U.S. military exercise, “Able Archer”, was in fact the prelude to an all-out nuclear strike against the USSR. The Soviet high command, in fact, did order the launch of what was seen as a retaliatory nuclear response to the imminent U.S. strike on the USSR. Very fortunately, two military officers took actions that defused the tension, one a Soviet Lt. Colonel who refused the order to launch ICBMs from the missile site he commanded, and an American General who called for the immediate termination of the Able Archer exercise.

Please join Dr/Colonel Tyrus W. Cobb for this presentation on a little known incident that came very close to an all-out nuclear exchange. Cobb served as Director of Soviet, European and Canadian Affairs in the Reagan National Security Council staff from 1983-87.

No need to RSVP now—just save this date.

Summary of the NSF Presentation on….

Transatlantic Security and Economic Cooperation 

in Facing Global Challenges

with

Senator Anna Maria Anders

Secretary of State, and
Plenipotentiary of the Prime Minister of the 
Republic of Poland for International Dialogue

The Forum was pleased to welcome Senator Anna Maria Anders, who serves as both Secretary of State and  as a representative of the Prime Minister of Poland for international affairs.  Senator Anders provided insightful commentary from her role as a Senator in Poland, and as a citizen of both the United States as well as Poland.  Senator Anders is the daughter of famed WWII hero, General Wladyslaw Anders, and shared some of her past, and that of her father, with the group.  General Anders, in the prelude to WWII, and during the conflict, led Polish resistance forces who fought bravely against, first, the Nazis, and later the Soviet Communists.

Senator Anders stressed that cooperation within NATO is vital due to the insecurity of the region.  Russia is viewed as a threat, and as fueling tensions in the region.   At the present, the government in Poland believes that Moscow has made very aggressive moves in the region, first against the Baltic NATO-member nations of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, and by bringing nuclear capable missiles into the Russian-owned Kalingrad area.  Relations between Poland and Russia have deteriorated and the current (right-leaning) government in Warsaw views the actions of the Russian leader, Vladimir Putin, with deep suspicion.

The refugee problem in Europe is also of grave concern.  Poland and Germany have differences regarding the refugee issue.   Warsaw is not as receptive to welcoming refugees from the Middle Eastern conflict and believes that Germany under Chancellor Merkel has been too liberal in the refugees they have allowed in.

Poland is also focused on repatriation of Polish refugees displaced during the communist era that ended 27 years ago.

On terrorism, Senator Anders stressed that countries must provide good prospects for young people to counter the allure of terrorist groups.  She believes that NATO is the best tool for countering terrorism, as well as providing stability in the region.  Poland considers itself a staunch ally in the fight against terrorism, and is working closely with the United States and the European Union to combat terrorism.

Poland supports President Trump’s call to have all NATO countries carry their share of the defense burden, and is one of only five countries in the alliance meeting the goal of 2% of GNP allocated to defense.

The economy of Poland is doing relatively well.  In fact,  increasing numbers of Polish citizens are returning to their country as economic conditions improve.  American companies are investing in Poland and many Polish firms are looking to invest in the United States, and particularly in Nevada.  In 2015, Poland set up a trade office at the University of Nevada, Reno’s, Innovation Center, and Governor Sandoval signed an agreement to enhance access to Nevada and US markets for Polish companies. Polish investors are producing goods for the US market and stimulating trade and innovation.  Poland’s education system is ranked 10th in the world and the talent in emerging technologies continues to grow.

In addition to Senator Anders, Beata Drzazga, the Nevada Business Ambassador from Poland was also in attendance.  Ms. Drzaga is a Polish business owner specializing in healthcare with over 3,000 employees in Poland.  State officials Kristopher Sanchez, the Director of International Trade, Jarad Van Wagoner, the Deputy Director, International Division, and John Petkus, Honorary Consul of the Republic of Poland, were also in attendance.   The Polish delegation was in Northern Nevada furthering the economic development partnership that has been formed between Poland and Nevada.

This is the final announcement for this most exciting presentation on…

The Significance of Transatlantic

Security and Economic Cooperation in

Facing Global Challenges

with

Renata Szczech

Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Poland

and Introduction By

Senator Anna Maria Anders

Secretary of State, Plenipotentiary of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland for International Dialogue

The Ramada, Wednesday, March 15, 2017, 9:00 a.m.

NATO has served as an anchor for transatlantic security relations since its creation in 1949.  Today, the alliance confronts threats encompassing a broad range of issues from cyber-defense, energy supplies, terrorism, migration and  Russia’s intrusion into Ukraine.  During the presidential race, President Trump often appeared skeptical about NATO’s ability to confront modern-day threats.

In the meantime, the State of Nevada and Poland are working to deepen their economic ties.  In 2015, Poland set up a trade office at the University of Nevada Reno’s Innevation Center and Governor Sandoval signed an agreement to enhance access to Nevada and US markets for Polish and Nevada based companies.

Please join us for what will be a very interesting discussion. A full breakfast will be served ($15 Members, $25 Non-Members, and $10 for students with ID and military personnel in uniform; free for WWII Veterans). We recommend that you arrive by 8:30 to enjoy some breakfast, coffee and conversation.
You are encouraged to RSVP by clicking HERE. You may also RSVP by e-mailing info@nationalsecurityforum.org. Just a reminder, after the forum, we will be accepting new and renewal membership applications for the July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017period. Forms will be available at the forum, though you can also access the application form by clicking HERE. For your convenience, we accept cash, check and credit card payments for both the breakfast and membership fees.

Just added!  Please join us for this most exciting presentation on…

Poland and the US:  NATO Relations Today

with

Renata Szczech

Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Poland

and Senator Anna Maria Anders

Secretary of State, Plenipotentiary of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland for International Dialogue

The Ramada, Wednesday, March 15, 2017, 9:00 a.m.

The State of Nevada and Poland are establishing a deep economic relationship.  Join us for a discussion about NATO and how Europe as a continent and Poland as a country are adapting to a new relationship with the United States.

Please join us for what will be a very interesting discussion. A full breakfast will be served ($15 Members, $25 Non-Members, and $10 for students with ID and military personnel in uniform; free for WWII Veterans). We recommend that you arrive by 8:30 to enjoy some breakfast, coffee and conversation.

You are encouraged to RSVP by clicking HERE. You may also RSVP by e-mailing info@nationalsecurityforum.org. Just a reminder, after the forum, we will be accepting new and renewal membership applications for the July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2017 period. Forms will be available at the forum, though you can also access the application form by clicking HERE. For your convenience, we accept cash, check and credit card payments for both the breakfast and membership fees.

Summary of the presentation on….

ADAPTING TO EXTREMES:

SECURING THE NATION AS 

THE GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGES

With

Dr. Maureen McCarthy

Noted physicist and national security expert Dr. Maureen McCarthy presented compelling evidence of the dramatic changes that are occurring with respect to the global climate. Citing numerous studies, she presented compelling information and challenged the audience with “homework” focused on becoming resilient; personally, as communities and as a nation.

With respect to the observable changes, McCarthy noted that there are significant rises in sea levels as Arctic and Antarctic regions warm and the ice caps melt. We are also witnessing more frequent and ferocious storms, heat waves and droughts, leading to concern over impacts on populated areas (many of which are at or near sea level).

Arctic warming has led to the opening of new sea routes through this region, which in turn will generate more US-Russian competition for access to these “SLOCs”—Sea Lanes of Communication. Russia is clearly positioned to take advantage of them.  Numerous Russian bases have been opened in the region and Russia has nuclear powered ice breakers, where the US has none.  The US has only two icebreakers to Russia’s 40!! The US has no bases north of the 66th parallel.  The US has limited nautical charts in the area, has drastically reduced its cold water training and is conducting very little exploration. Further, DoD does not have a unified combatant command responsible for the Arctic region!

However, the Department of Defense and the Services have taken climate change seriously since 2000, and military plans and budgets for response have been developed that incorporate climate change actions.  The Navy is ahead in this area—no surprise there—but is still facing readiness and deployment challenges.  Dr. McCarthy stressed that there is much to be done and we do not have to start from scratch.  The DoD, other Departments, and the National Security Council have undertaken serious planning with respect to climate change. (Much of their material is available, and references are provided at the end of the attached PowerPoint.

When asked about Canada’s role in the sea lanes opening up, she remarked that Canada is very concerned about Russia’s activities, and they are better prepared than the U.S. in terms of planning and equipment.

With almost 50% of the US population living in coastal counties, McCarthy stressed that changes in policy, infrastructure and response are needed to become more resilient to the continuing extreme weather variabilities.

In response to questions from the audience, McCarthy stated that organizations such as the Red Cross and other response and recovery organization must work together as “resiliency partners” with the communities to raise the level of preparedness. Resilience must be developed on personal, community and national levels.  When asked about population growth McCarthy responded that population is not necessarily the problem, but where they live and the socioeconomic issues surrounding those populations are.  Climate change is a conflict catalyst and resiliency is the key to “weather the storm”.

Citing the recent Oroville Dam scare, McCarthy challenged the audience to think about what our community could absorb from a surge this winter following the massive snow in the Sierras.  Luckily this near catastrophic event was far enough away that the Truckee Meadows was not impacted, but what if the disaster had been closer to home?

In summation, McCarthy again challenged the audience to let innovation and imagination be the drivers in creating our personal and community resiliency plans.  She stressed that response will always be at the community level and we must be prepared, speak out and get involved.

The link to McCarthy’s PowerPoint is below:

MIM NSF Talk Adapting-Extremes 01Mar17 V3