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>  News Releases >   2003 >   April

Ambassadors to lecture on German-American relations

Posted 04/18/03

Wolfgang Ischinger, German Ambassador to the United States and Robert Kimmitt, former U.S. Ambassador to Germany, will give a lecture on Thursday, May 1, titled "Germany and America: Reunification, Iraq, and Beyond." The lecture will focus on German-American relations and how they have been affected by world events over the past 15 years. The two will speak on the process of reunifying Germany after the fall of communism, the recent deterioration of German-American relations, and how the current situation in Iraq will affect those relations in the future. In addition, they will discuss Germany's current foreign policy position. Tracy Hughes '04 organized the event with Bruce Duncan, Professor of German Language.

"Based on current anti-Americanism among some in Germany, we felt that it was especially important to have this lecture now," Hughes said. "Students of our generation take it as a given that Germany reunified and don't realize what a feat it was to settle the territorial and political issues peacefully. German unification could never have happened had the U.S. not actively supported it over the opposition of France, Britain and the U.S.S.R. We wanted to show how the friendship between the two countries is so special."

Ischinger, the German Ambassador to the United States, studied law in Bonn, Geneva, and at Harvard and also holds a master's degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Until 2001, he was the German State Secretary, the highest civil service position in the German Foreign Office. He played an important role in the Bosnia Peace Talks in Dayton, Ohio, and the negotiations surrounding the NATO-Russia Founding Act, NATO enlargement, and the Kosovo crisis.

Kimmitt, the U.S. Ambassador to Germany from 1991to 1993, was the first ambassador to work with a reunified Germany. Kimmitt also served as General Counsel to the U.S. Treasury Department (1985–1987), and Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs (1989–1991). He is currently Executive Vice President of AOL Time Warner.

The lecture is sponsored by The Harris German-Dartmouth Distinguished Visiting Professorship and the German Department. It will take place in 28 Silsby at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 1, and is open to the public. The lecture will be followed by a question-and-answer session. For information call Margaret Robinson at 646-2418 or Stephanie Taylor at 646-2408.

- Jeremy Presser '04

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