Ambassador Susan Rice | August 27, 2020
This event was not recorded.
In AGS’ first Dave & Kay Phillips Family International Lecture of the semester, Professor Schanzer was joined by Ambassador Susan Rice, former National Security Advisor and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, to discuss American values and interests in foreign policy. In the context of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Ambassador Rice spoke about the response to the pandemic by the Trump administration. She noted that the possibility of a pandemic has been addressed and known by the intelligence community, national security agencies, and other government agencies; she noted that the possibility of a novel coronavirus was even an example given at one point during her time in government. She noted that while plans were in place, they were not effectively carried out in response to the pandemic, and she noted the implications this had for both national security and foreign policy. Ambassador Rice also addressed the issue of systemic racism, speaking about reform and accountability and the need to empower individuals to seek for significant change.
The discussion also covered several pressing national security and foreign policy issues. Ambassador Rice spoke about the relationship between the U.S. and China, its enormous implications for other bilateral relationships, and the line between competition and conflict. She noted in particular the need to bolster domestic policies in order to more effectively compete with China; she highlighted artificial intelligence, immigration policy, infrastructure, and education among other issues and sectors to focus on. Ambassador Rice also spoke more broadly on the need for a strategic vision for American foreign policy and national security that encompasses alliances as well as American interests and values. The discussion then shifted to Q&A, where Ambassador Rice answered questions regarding specific policies toward China, U.S. interests and involvement in other regions of the world, and the balance between values-driven and interests-driven foreign policy.