’19s Get Heated Over U.S. Policy in Middle East

In our meeting last Friday, the ’19s began discussing articles from the EconomistĀ involving current news about Africa. One was about the tension between Ethiopia, Sudan, and Egypt, concerning the use and misuse of hydroelectric power generated by the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam. Another was about the decrease in both the supply and demand of diamonds in Botswana, forcing the democratic country to find other ways to “spark” the economy. Eventually, the discussion flipped to the topic of the United States’ nuclear deal with Iran, which had placed sanctions on Iran’s nuclear program and international trade. This is where it got heated. We disputed over why the Iranians sent their uranium to the Russians of all people, which caused us to question Russia’s intent in the Middle East. By backing the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, and being friendly to Iran, Russia may have successfully gained more influence in Middle Eastern than the U.S. This observation caused us to think deeply about U.S. foreign policy, which brought us to the Syrian Refugee Crisis. By this point, we were all acting like true politicians. We questions whether or not the United States should value American lives more than those from foreign countries or how, if at all, we should allow Syrians fleeing their country into the United States. At the moment, these questions are still up for debate, but we’ll save them for another time.

~Alexander Burkett

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