Alumni Newsletter 2013

From the Department Chair

December 2013


Dear Alumni:

This is the last time you will be receiving an alumni newsletter from BU’s Department of International Relations. Next year at about this time you should be receiving the first alumni newsletter from BU’s Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, scheduled to “open its doors” in September 2014.

What can I tell you about the School? First, here is the draft mission statement. You will note the emphasis on “improving the human condition” and on having a forward-looking orientation – without, I should emphasize, ignoring the past or disregarding the present. In both teaching and research, the School aims to take on big problems that matter.

The School’s faculty will continue to mix scholars and practitioners and will emphasize an interdisciplinary approach. But the faculty will grow in size, adding members from other BU departments, colleges, and programs. Basically, the Pardee School will allow some role for any BU faculty member who has an interest in international affairs broadly defined. In that sense, we can expect the faculty to become not only larger but also more diverse in approach and outlook.

Leading the School will be a dean, who will report to the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Recruitment of the School’s founding dean will begin soon and should be complete by the end of January. Given the amount of work needed to have the School up and running by September, the intent is to have the dean “on the job” by February 2014. Look for President Robert Brown to announce the appointment in the weeks ahead.

The School will consist of two principal units. The Division of International Studies (DIS) will be an augmented version of the current IR Department. The Division of Regional Studies (DRS) will bring together under a single umbrella BU’s several centers devoted to regional studies. These regional programs are currently scattered across the Charles River campus. Co-locating them will help us provide better staffing while also encouraging communication and collaboration.

At least initially, the School will be housed in the three Bay State Road brownstones that are currently home to the IR Dept. However, we have reason to believe that the university will allocate to the School some additional space – not yet identified – to accommodate the DRS.

Initially, the undergraduate and graduate degrees offered by the School will be the same as those offered under the department’s auspices. Over time, however, degree offerings are likely to change, some existing ones being consolidated and some new ones being added. Oh, and by no means incidentally, the creation of the School should enable us to do a better job of providing financial aid, particularly to our graduate students.

For those of us in the department, the founding of the Pardee School represents the fulfillment of longstanding aspirations. The opportunities inherent in becoming a school are causing great excitement among the faculty. We hope that current and future students will share in that excitement.

We’ll keep you posted as things develop.


Andrew J. Bacevich
Chair, Department of International Relations

Faculty News

Andrew Bacevich Appears on the Colbert Report. Professor Andrew Bacevich made a guest appearance on the Colbert Report on May 23 to discuss the debate over revision of the Authorization to Use Military Force. Watch the clip.

C-Span Interviews Ambassador Husain Haqqani on US-Pakistan Relations. Ambassador Husain Haqqani was interviewed by C-Span regarding his article, “Breaking Up Is Not Hard to Do: Why the U.S. – Pakistan Allaince Isn’t Worth the Trouble,” which appeared in the March/April 2013 issue of Foreign Affairs. Watch the interview.

Ambassador Husain Haqqani Appears on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Ambassador Husain Haqqani was interviewed on the Daily Show about his new book, Magnificent Delusions, a critique of the relationship between Pakistan and the United States. Watch the interview.

Global Economic Governance Initiative (GEGI). Changes are afoot with the Global Economic Governance Initiative (GEGI). GEGI was founded in 2008 as part of the department’s Center for International Relations and the Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future. In 2013, GEGI became a troika by joining forces with BU’s new Center for Finance, Law, and Policy. In addition, GEGI has added new BU IR assistant professor Cornel Ban as the co-director of GEGI with Kevin Gallagher. In the fall of 2013 GEGI held a joint workshop with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development in Geneva. This workshop of policy-makers and academic experts assessed the post-financial crisis regime for the global governance of capital flows and drew-up recommendations for reform. GEGI also held a seminar series at BU in the fall semester called “China’s Global Reach” that examined the political economy of China’s growing presence across the world. To learn more about GEGI and to get on its mailing list, see

Faculty_Loftis_RobertAmbassador Loftis Joins IR Department. Former U.S. Ambassador Robert. G. Loftis, a specialist in international negotiations and national security policy, joined the IR Department faculty in Fall 2013.Loftis served in the State Department and Foreign Service from 1980 to 2012, where he held a wide variety of assignments, including Acting Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization (2010-2012), Senior Adviser for Security Negotiations and Agreements (2004-2007), Ambassador to Lesotho (2001-2004) and Deputy Chief of Mission in Mozambique (1999-2001). From 2007-2009, he was the Deputy Commandant and Senior Adviser for International Affairs of the Industrial College of the Armed Forces at the National Defense University, where he also taught Strategic Leadership. In early 2008, Loftis was the lead negotiator for a status of forces agreement with Iraq. He was also the Deputy Executive Director of the Implementation Planning Team for the creation of the Department of Defense’s new Africa Command (AFRICOM).

Faculty Publications

magnificent delusionsMagnificent Delusions: Pakistan, the United States, and an Epic History of Misunderstanding (Public Affairs, 2013) by Husain Haqqani. The relationship between America and Pakistan is based on mutual incomprehension and always has been. Pakistan—to American eyes—has gone from being a quirky irrelevance, to a stabilizing friend, to an essential military ally, to a seedbed of terror. America—to Pakistani eyes—has been a guarantee of security, a coldly distant scold, an enthusiastic military enabler, and is now a threat to national security and a source of humiliation.

The countries are not merely at odds. Each believes it can play the other—with sometimes absurd, sometimes tragic, results. The conventional narrative about the war in Afghanistan, for instance, has revolved around the Soviet invasion in 1979. But President Jimmy Carter signed the first authorization to help the Pakistani-backed mujahedeen covertly on July 3—almost six months before the Soviets invaded. Americans were told, and like to believe, that what followed was Charlie Wilson’s war of Afghani liberation, in which they remain embroiled to this day. It was not. It was General Zia-ul-Haq’s vicious regional power play.

Husain Haqqani has a unique insight into Pakistan, his homeland, and America, where he was ambassador and is now a professor at Boston University. His life has mapped the relationship of the two countries and he has found himself often close to the heart of it, sometimes in very confrontational circumstances, and this has allowed him to write the story of a misbegotten diplomatic love affair, here memorably laid bare.

“Magnificent Delusions provides a fascinating insider’s account of America’s important but troubled relationship with Pakistan. Ambassador Haqqani’s purpose is not to fix blame, but to explain how two countries that have for 60 years described themselves as allies can nevertheless misunderstand each other thoroughly and repeatedly. Richly-detailed, this skillfully written narrative will enlighten scholars, entrance average readers, and give future diplomats much to contemplate. It is a timely, valuable and objective book.”

-Madeleine Albright

breach of trust

Breach of Trust: How Americans Failed Their Soldiers and Their Country (Metropolitan Books, 2013) by Andrew J. Bacevich. Bestselling author Andrew Bacevich takes stock of the separation between Americans and their military, tracing its origins to the Vietnam era and exploring its pernicious implications: a nation with an abiding appetite for war waged at enormous expense by a standing army demonstrably unable to achieve victory. Among the collateral casualties are values once considered central to democratic practice, including the principle that responsibility for defending the country should rest with its citizens.

“Bacevich offers a brilliant critique of an American military system sharply at variance with our democratic republican ideals. Most disturbing is his compelling argument that the fault lies with We the People. A thought-provoking ride.”

-Karl W. Eikenberry, Lieutenant General, U. S. Army (Retired) and former U. S. Ambassador to Afghanistan

Clash of Globalizations

The Clash of Globalizations: Essays on the Political Economy of Trade and Development Policy (Anthem Press, 2013) by Kevin P. Gallagher. The Clash of Globalizations presents a series of essays on the political economy of trade and development policy. This book explores the factors that have led to twenty-first-century trade politics being characterized as a “clash of globalizations.”

“This is a ‘big picture’ book about the world economy, rooted in a detailed study of the institutions and norms that affect cross-border transactions, especially those of developing countries. Put it on your reading list if you are interested in the governance of the world economy, and also if you are interested in reforming the teaching of economics away from the current curriculum dominated by mathematical technique and towards topics from institutional economics, political science and sociology.”

-Robert H. Wade, Professor of Political Economy, London School of Economics and Political Science

Wronged by Empire

Wronged by Empire: Post-Imperial Ideology and Foreign Policy in India and China (Studies in Asian Security) (Stanford University Press, 2013) by Manjari Chaterjee Miller. Although India and China have very different experiences of colonialism, they respond to that history in a similar way—by treating it as a collective trauma. As a result they have a strong sense of victimization that affects their foreign policy decisions even today.

Wronged by Empire breaks new ground by blending this historical phenomenon, colonialism, with mixed methods—including archival research, newspaper data mining and a new statistical method of content analysis—to explain the foreign policy choices of India and China: two countries that are continuously discussed but very rarely rigorously compared. By reference to their colonial past, Miller explains their puzzling behavior today. For example, she demonstrates why in important cases (such as India going nuclear in 1998 or China’s fraught relationship with Japan) their foreign policy behavior is not consistent with the security explanations that are dominant in international relations.

“Manjari Chatterjee Miller’s Wronged by Empire is a pathbreaking study of the effects of the bitter history of imperial victimhood on the foreign policy of Asia’s two rising great powers. This book is an important contribution to both international relations theory and Asian studies.”

-Thomas J. Christensen, William P. Boswell Professor of World Politics of Peace and War and Director, China and the World Program, Princeton University

Alumni & Student News

Neil Borland (GRS ’12): Fulbright Public Policy Fellow Neil Borland

I graduated from BU with my MA in Global Development Policy in January 2012. From March to November of that year, I lived in Huaraz, Ancash, Peru, working for the Andean offices of a US-based NGO called The Mountain Institute. Active in mountain regions in Nepal, China, and Peru, TMI is engaged in development projects focusing on helping mountain communities adapt to climate change. These projects primarily focus on improving agricultural development and water resource management. While at TMI’s Andean site, I was responsible for two projects. The first was an analysis of the feasibility of creating a bioremediation system in the Campesino Community of Canrey Chico, a partner community that has been suffering from severely contaminated water for over a decade. The second was a project seeking to find funds to repair a sewage treatment plant for another partner community, Huasta. The plant was constructed years ago and has fallen into disrepair due to lack of support and investment from local government.

After finishing my work with TMI, I moved to Bogota, Colombia, where I lived until returning to Boston in June 2013. While in Colombia, I worked at a think tank called the Instituto de Ciencia Politica doing research and writing on economic and political issues in Latin America for the Institute’s quarterly publication, Revista Perspectiva. My writing focused on issues of conflict between the mining sector and local (often indigenous) populations in Colombia and throughout the region, drawing heavily on my firsthand experiences in Peru. I also wrote daily and weekly pieces for the Institute’s website.

I have been offered a Fulbright Public Policy Fellowship and headed to Guatemala City in September 2013. While there, I will be working in the Guatemalan Ministry of Natural Resources, contributing to an ongoing project of the federal government to overhaul management of freshwater resources in the country. My focus is on the mining industry’s use of water resources and how regulations and policies can be changed to minimize damage to said resources and the livelihood and safety of local populations in areas of mining activity. My time spent in Peru and Colombia was an incredible experience, and while it was nice to be back home for a bit, I was excited to get back to Latin America.

Aaron Stanley (CAS ’12): Conflict Dynamics International Aaron Stanley

Aaron Stanley graduated with a BA in International Relations, with a focus on Africa & the Middle East and Environment & Development. He participated in the Washington, D.C. internship program through BU and interned for the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

Since graduating, he has served as a staffer for the Subcommittee on African Affairs, Global Health, and Human Rights in the U.S. House of Representatives, and is currently working as a Junior Program Officer for Conflict Dynamics International’s Somalia program. His work focuses on governance and peace-building in transition states in an effort to promote peace and resolve violent conflict within and between states. Aaron also works on decentralization policy within southern and central Somalia, legislative reform in Somaliland, hybrid political orders, and traditional and customary policy in Somalia and Somaliland. He coordinates the program from the Cambridge office of CDI, and has had the opportunity to travel to Kenya and both northern and southern Somalia for his work. He has given presentations on CDI’s work in Somalia as well as conducted meetings with in-country interlocutors.

Of his life since graduation, he says that “Overall, it has been a fantastic experience that has granted me significantly more travel and responsibility than I could have hoped for as a recent graduate.”

Kyler Reeser (GRS ’13): Researching Czech Intelligence Reform Kyler Reeser

Supported by a grant from the IR Department, I had the opportunity to travel to Prague, Czech Republic, for interviews related to my capstone MA Paper research. My MA Paper is a study of post-1989 intelligence reform in the Czech Republic, with particular focus on the dynamic years of 1990 to 1996. I sought to understand how the Czech Republic overcame its communist legacy and established intelligence services that could function effectively – and with legitimacy in the eyes of the populace – in a fledgling democracy. With English language literature on these topics decidedly sparse, the significance of the grant was two-fold: it allowed me to bypass the language obstacle, and it granted direct access to information not yet documented in the current literature.

During my time in Prague, I interviewed several individuals with experience across the Czech intelligence services – BIS (domestic intelligence) UZSI (foreign intelligence), and VZ (military intelligence). The interviewees ranged from a member of the communist-era secret police (StB) in Czechoslovakia to a former director of BIS. Those whom I interviewed offered multiple viewpoints and first-hand knowledge of Czech intelligence reform, and their contributions to my research were invaluable. In addition to interviews with individuals from the intelligence services, I was able to meet with a former director of the Prague-based Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes as well as the current executive director of the Prague Security Studies Institute. Each of these individuals offered a unique perspective regarding the role of the intelligence services in the Czech Republic.

The history and identity of the Czech Republic – and of Czechoslovakia as its predecessor – has a unique impact on the workings of the government and, by extension, the intelligence services. The environment in which the Czech government functions is difficult to understand from afar, and the role and nature of its intelligence services can easily be misunderstood. The research grant facilitated a brief but intimate opportunity for understanding the current Czech intelligence services and the reform efforts from which they have emerged.

Faculty News

Andrew Bacevich makes guest appearance on the Colbert Report.

Husain Haqqani appears on The Daily Show to discuss US-Pakistan Relations.

Kevin Gallagher publishes new book on the political economy of trade and development policy.

Manjari Chatterjee Miller pens new book on Post-Imperial Ideology and Foreign Policy in India and China.

Alumni & Student News

Neil Borland (GRS ’12) writes about his field experience in Peru working for a US-based NGO.

Aaron Stanley (CAS ’12) joins Conflict Dynamics International’s Somalia program as Junior Program Officer.

Kyler Reeser (GRS ’13) researches Czech Intelligence Reform.

Upcoming Events

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