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March 11, 2019


March 11, 2019

A Message from the President of SDWAC

Dear SDWAC Colleagues and Friends:

We are coming off another very successful Annual Dinner. Our February 23 event at the Westin Gaslamp downtown attracted a full house of more than 160 people, among them groups of students from San Diego State, the University of San Diego and Canyon Crest Academy. Thanks again to the Charles W. Hostler Institute of World Affairs at San Diego State for cosponsoring the dinner.

Our keynote speaker, Ambassador Nicholas Burns, former top career diplomat at the State Department, dazzled the large audience with his command of salient foreign policy issues and his constructive criticism of the policies of the current administration.  

The theme that Burns came back to again and again was the importance of the United States engaging with -- rather than withdrawing from -- the world as it faces challenges that are perhaps more forbidding than it has seen in decades.

"If the U.S. tries to act alone in the world," he declared, "we will fail."

Burns cited transnational problems such as climate change, human trafficking, and cyber crimes, but he paid particular attention to America's "perilous" relationship with China.

For some four decades, the two countries agreed to engage with each other and work together, Burns said. Now, the relationship is one of "outright competition," marked in no small part by China's predatory trade policies. This battle will go on for decades, Burns predicted, making it imperative that the United States amp up research and development funding and enhance cooperation between the military and Silicon Valley. 

What of the future? Burns remarked on the four pillars of power that made America great in the years after Pearl Harbor: overseas alliances, free trade, core American values (democracy, rule of law), and a welcoming attitude to immigrants and refugees.

Churchill perhaps said it best, Burns concluded. However much America may have been the strongest and greatest country in the world , but "one cannot rise to be the leading country in the civilized world without being involved in its problems, convulsed by its agonies and inspired by its causes.”

"Ladies and gentlemen," Burns concluded, "I know we can be that country again.”

[Note: Burns' speech may be viewed in its entirety on]

We have another fine expert speaking to us in just ten days -- UCSD professor and specialist on trade with China Dr. Gordon Hanson. I urge members to turn out in force in the familiar environs of National University's North Torrey Pines Road campus on March 11.  And if you've registered but can't attend, for purposes of seating arrangements please let us know in advance at

Finally, the term of many current board members expires in June.  A nominating committee is being formed under the leadership of Dr. Sabodh Garg.  We need aninfusion of new blood and enthusiasm, both on the board and, as general members, on our various committees (programs; public relations/marketing/social media; membership; and development).  Please let a board member know at one of our events or email us at if you're interested in contributing to this voluntary organization and in helping give San Diego the World Affairs Council it deserves.

-- John Schlosser


San Diego World Affairs Council


“U.S. Trade Policy toward China: heading toward trade war or deal?"


Gordon Hanson

Professor Gordon Hanson

International Trade Expert 

School of Global Policy and Strategy

UC San Diego

The United States and China seem to have been hovering on the brink of anall-out trade war for many months. That said, bilateral negotiations are underway that some observers believe will lead to a resolution as early as this month. Will a U.S.-Chinese trade deal happen?  If it does, will the Trump administration accept concessions that may positively affect the U.S. trade balance with China but fall far short of the structural reforms some analysts say are necessary to healthy trade relations between China and the rest of the world?

After the 2016 presidential election, America dramatically shifted its approach to international trade. Economic nationalism replaced the multilateralism that guided U.S. economic relations since World War II. The newly aggressive U.S. stance is most evident in punitive tariffs imposed on China, which have harmed important U.S. exporters as well. Professor Hanson will discuss how U.S. trade policy has evolved over time and will consider likely scenarios for U.S. global economic relations.


About our Speaker

Gordon Hanson holds the Pacific Economic Cooperation Chair in International Economic Relations at UC San Diego, where he is on the faculty of the School of Global Policy and Strategy and the Department of Economics, and is director of the Center on Global Transformation. He is presently a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and co-editor of the Journal of Economic Perspectives.

Professor Hanson received his Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1992 and his B.A. in economics from Occidental College in 1986. Prior to joining UC San Diego in 2001, he served on the economics faculties of the University of Michigan and the University of Texas. In his scholarship, Professor Hanson specializes in international trade, international migration and economic geography.  His current research addresses how expanded trade with China has affected the U.S. labor market and how U.S. regional economies adjust to immigration. 


Thursday, March 21, 2019

6:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Registration and Refreshments
6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Presentation and Q&A


National University, Sanford Center Auditorium

11355 N. Torrey Pines Rd

La Jolla, CA 92037 

Complimentary parking on the National University campus


Free for SDWAC Members and Students

$10 for Non-Members


*Please note that the viewpoints expressed by speakers at SDWAC events are their own, and do not represent those of SDWAC. As a nonpartisan organization, SDWAC seeks to engage speakers who, together, represent a variety of viewpoints across the political spectrum in order to contribute to informed policy discussion and a meaningful exchange of ideas within the San Diego community. 



The complicated world we live in is illuminated a bit more every week at the North County Chapter’s Thursday Morning Forum in Rancho Bernardo. These free, weekly talks address a range of global topics in arelaxed and social atmosphere. Forums begin with a coffee social at 9:30a.m., followed by a program at 10 a.m. and Q&A from 11:10 a.m. to noon. The public is invited and no reservation is needed.

Unless otherwise indicated, Forums are held at the Remington Club (Phase II), 16916 Hierba Drive, Rancho Bernardo, San Diego, CA 92128. Parking is available in the adjacent shopping center.

Upcoming Programs for March 2019

March 14 – Our member Charles [Toby] Westbrook will guide us through anexercise in “Thinking Outside the Box” that will focus on the concept of the “Wisdom of the Crowd,” arguing that under the right circumstances the “Crowd” can be very instinctive, intuitive and especially prescient. “Who is the One that is Wiser than Anyone?” Toby during his 50-year career spent the first half in international banking, corporate finance and investment banking. The latter 25 years were spent in investment advisory and management.

March 21 – Our guest, Professor Everard Meade, will guide us through “Crisis or Diversion: What’s Really Happening on the U.S.-Mexico Border,” often framed as a dead zone, a breeding ground for crisis and tragedy, with caravans of desperate asylum seekers and violent drug traffickers having fueled a heated debate over border security and caused the longest government shutdown in U.S. history. Everard Meade is Professor of Practice and Faculty Director of the Trans-Border Institute at the Kroc School, USD. Please advise Farouk if you would like to attend the limited-seating Round Table Lunch following the program at

March 28 – Our guest, Professor Philip G. Roeder, from UCSD will talk on how “America Confronts its Russian Challenge: Hard Choices and No Easy Solutions.” Professor Roeder specializes in the analysis of the politics and policies of the Soviet Union and Russia; he received his Ph.D. from Harvard University and was a Fulbright lecturer at Kazan Federal University in Tatarstan (Russia); he has published extensively and written four books, including ‘Post-communism and the Theory of Democracy and Red Sunset: The Failure of Soviet Politics .’
Please advise Tom Reeve if you would like to attend he limited-seating Round-Table Lunch at

Upcoming events of the North County Chapter of the San Diego World Affairs Council can be seen on

March 6, 2019

Weekly World News Update

Trump-Kim Break Up; Netanyahu Indictment; Trudeau in Trouble?; Algerian Presidential Protests; China's Economic Spiral; India-Turkey Downgrade; EU Taxes; Migrants Surge Border; 58 Military and National Security Leaders Write Trump; Huawei on Trial

Quote of the Week

It is more than a failure. It is a tragedy. There was a deal to be had. There was no “trap.” There was no real risk that “Trump was going to give away the store.” Instead, there was an honest difference in negotiating positions.”

-- Joe Cirincione, President of Ploughshares Fund, in a LobeLog article today on the Hanoi Summit no-deal.

Trump-Kim Break Up

"The Inevitable Return of Muddling Along in North Korea" Richard Fontaine -- The Atlantic, March 5, 2019

After Hanoi Summit: Rebuilding of Sohae Launch Facility” Joseph Bermudez and Victor Cha -- Center for Strategic and International Studies, March 5, 2019

The Hanoi Setback and Tokyo’s North Korea Problem” Sheila Smith -- Council on Foreign Relations, March 1, 2019


No-Deal Summit - Will Trump and Kim Break Up or Make Up?” Scott Snyder -- Nikkei Asian Review, March 1, 2019


Assessment of the Trump-Kim Hanoi Summit” Sue Mi Terry and Lisa Collins -- Center for Strategic and International Studies, February 28, 2019

Netanyahu in Trouble?

Netanyahu Faces Indictments and a Rising Opposition - Could He Lose Re-Election?” Bernard Avishai -- New Yorker, March 4, 2019


The End Is Nigh for Netanyahu” Natan Sachs -- The Atlantic, March 2, 2019

The Man Who Could Topple Netanyahu” Gwen Ackerman; Amy Teibel; Udi Segal -- Bloomberg, March 4, 2019

Political Scandal in Canada

Trudeau and Wilson-Raybould: The Crisis That Could Unseat Canada's PM” BBC News, March 4, 2019


Justin Trudeau Vowed to Change Politics. Now a Scandal May Doom Him.” Yuliya Talmazan -- NBC News, March 6, 2019

Trudeau’s Ex-Adviser and Close Friend to Testify in Political Crisis” Ian Austen -- The New York Times, March 6, 2019

Algerians Protest Bouteflika

Algeria’s Aging Leader Could Spark a Belated Arab Spring” Zvi Bar'el -- Haaretz, March 4, 2019

Algeria: Anger Boils Despite President’s Offer to Protesters” Aomar Ouali -- Associated Press, March 4, 2019

Thousands of Algerians Are Protesting to Force Their Ailing Dictator to Step Aside” Alex Ward -- Vox, March 5, 2019

China Spirals Downward Economically

Six Key Takeaways from China Premier Li Keqiang’s Annual Policy Blueprint” South China Morning Post -- South China Morning Post, March 5, 2019

China Warns of 'Tough Struggle' As It Cuts Growth Target to Lowest Since 1990” Lily Kuo -- The Guardian, March 4, 2019

China at the Crossroads” Jeff Spross -- The Week Magazine, March 6, 2019

Trump Drops India and Turkey Status

Trump Moves to Scrap Trade Privilege for India, Delhi Plays Down Impact” Eric Beech; Neha Dasgupta; Manoj Kumar, Krishna Das; Aditya Kalra; Chris Prentice; Sanjeev Miglani; Clarence Fernandez; James Dalgleish -- Reuters, March 4, 2019


"Trump Kicks India, Turkey Out of Trade Preference Program" Doug Palmer -- Politico EU, March 5, 2019

All About Taxes

‘Don’t Tax Me; Don’t Tax Thee; Tax the Fellow Behind the Tree’” William Reinsch -- Center for Strategic and International Studies, March 4, 2019

Migrant Crossings Surge

"Migrant Families Arrive In Busloads As Border Crossings Hit 10-Year High" Joel Rose; John Burnett; Richard Gonzales -- NPR, March 5, 2019

Southern Border at 'Breaking Point' After More Than 76,000 Illegal Immigrants Tried Crossing in February, Officials Say” Nicole Darrah -- Fox News, March 5, 2019

"Border Patrol Facilities Put Detainees With Medical Conditions at Risk" Sheri Fink and Caitlin Dickerson -- New York Times, March 5, 2019

58 Military and National Security Leaders Write Trump

"Letter to the President of the United States: 58 Senior Military and National Security Leaders Denounce NSC Climate Panel" The Center for Climate & Security, March 5, 2019

Meng Wanzhou Goes to Court

"Huawei’s Meng Wanzhou Set to Appear in B.C. Courtroom Wednesday" Global News, March 6, 2019


Mailing Address

San Diego World Affairs Council (SDWAC)

PO Box 34010

San Diego, CA 92163


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