KU News Release

April 6, 2012
Contact: Bart Redford, Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, 785-864-4248

KU-Fort Leavenworth security conference to focus on Afghanistan 2014

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies and the Center for Global and International Studies, together with the Foreign Military Studies Office at Fort Leavenworth, will host the third annual KU-Fort Leavenworth Security Conference on April 25. The conference, which will be in the Kansas Union, will focus on “Afghanistan 2014 and Impacts on Global Security Identities.”

Conference presenters will wrestle with the complicated issues surrounding the reduction of the United States and international military presence in Afghanistan after 2014, and the resulting changes in the global security environment. Col. Thomas Wilhelm, director of the Foreign Military Studies Office at Fort Leavenworth, characterized this year’s conference as “a valuable opportunity to better understand and appreciate this watershed moment in contemporary security history through diverse perspectives at one of the nation's leading research universities."

Keynote speakers at the event include Graeme Herd, Geneva Centre for Security Policy; Roger Kangas, dean, Near East and South Asia Center; and Marlene Laruelle, Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies, George Washington University.

Tentative program
8 a.m.: Registration
8:30 a.m.: Welcome: Edith Clowes (director, CREES) and Thomas Wilhelm (director, FMSO)
8:45-9:30 a.m.: Opening keynote address: Marlene Laruelle (political science, George Washington University), “Central Asia and Russia, Looking at the 2014 Withdrawal: Perceptions and Strategies”
9:30-11 a.m.: Panel I, Afghanistan and the World: Security Identities after 2014
Ahmad Majidyar, subject matter expert, leader development and education for sustained peace, “An Afghanistan Perspective of Security after ISAF Withdrawal”
Ruoxi Du (CREES), “Chinese Perceptions toward the Post-2014 Afghanistan”
Vadim Kozyulin (PIR Center, Program for Conventional Arms, Moscow), “Afghanistan: What to Expect, and What Does it Mean for Russia”
11:15 a.m.-12:45 p.m.: Panel II, Afghanistan in Central Asia: Security Identities after 2014
Matthew Stein (Foreign Military Studies Office, Fort Leavenworth), “Uzbekistan’s Viewpoint of Security in Afghanistan after 2014”
Thomas Wilhelm (Foreign Military Studies Office, Fort Leavenworth), “Pakistan’s Tribal Areas and Security Perspectives after Withdrawal”
Lewis B. Sckolnick (Rector Press Intelligence), “Afghanistan: The Realities of Its Security and Trade in the 21st Century”
1 p.m.-2 p.m.: Lunch
2-2:45 p.m.: Graeme Herd (International Security Program, Geneva), “After Afghanistan: Implications and Emerging Paradigms after Withdrawal”
3-4:30 p.m.: Roundtable on “Post-2014 Afghanistan: Stepping into a New Era of Security Challenges”
Mediator, Roger Kangas (Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies, National Defense U., Washington, D.C.), with all conference speakers
4:30-5 p.m.: Concluding discussion: Roger Kangas

CREES Director Edith Clowes noted that the impact of the conference has been heightened by recent events in Afghanistan. “Everyone knows that we are approaching a turning point in Afghanistan. There is a lot that could go wrong if our civilian and military leaders do not keep the big picture in mind. While the public has been focusing lately on the twin tragedies of Quran burning and an alleged rogue soldier going on a killing spree, this KU conference will bring many viewpoints to the table that, nevertheless, must be considered — Afghan, Russian Chinese, Uzbek, among others. I am delighted that KU is at the forefront of the effort to heed all these points of view.”

The conference is free and open to the public, but participants must register by 5 p.m. on Friday, April 20. It is made possible by Title VI Department of Education National Resource Center grants and a KU-Fort Leavenworth Army Research Labs Grant.

To register for the conference, go online and follow the conference link in the announcements section.

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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