Russian expert | Arkansas Blog

Monday, September 15, 2008

Russian expert

Posted By on Mon, Sep 15, 2008 at 11:10 AM

Another opportunity to learn more about the Russia-Georgia conflict is coming up this week. Russian expert E. Wayne Merry will speak to the Arkansas Committee on Foreign Relations at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday at Capriccio Grill in the Peabody. Details on reservations on the jump.

 

The Arkansas Committee on Foreign Relations on Sept. 16 will present Russia expert E. Wayne Merry, who will discuss the ongoing conflict between Russia and Georgia.
 
The event will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 16 at 11:30 a.m. at Capriccio Grill at The Peabody Hotel in downtown Little Rock.  Tickets are $20 per person, which includes lunch.  Reservations can be made by sending an e-mail to: csmith@conwaycorp.net.
 
E. Wayne Merry is a Senior Associate at the American Foreign Policy Council and a Russia Country Specialist for Amnesty International/USA.
 
Merry has written often about Russia, the Caucasus and Central Asia, based on his six years in Moscow and his work with post-Soviet states in the Pentagon and afterwards.  He was in Georgia last November as a guest of President Saakashvili, witnessed close up the massive anti-government protests in Tbilisi, and visited what has recently become the battlefield in South Ossetia.  He has written quite critically of Georgian government actions in the recent conflict with Russia.
 
In a 26-year career in the United States Foreign Service (1972-98), Merry served six years in Moscow as a specialist in Soviet (1980-83) and Russian (1991-94) politics.  In the early 1990s, he was in charge of reporting and analysis on the Soviet collapse and emergence of independent Russia.  In early 1995, Merry joined the staff of the U.S. Secretary of Defense as Regional Director for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia to develop defense relations with the states of the former Soviet Union.  Before retiring from the Foreign Service, Merry was Senior Advisor to the U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, a bipartisan Congressional-Executive human rights monitoring body.
 
Merry also served in the German Democratic Republic during the early period of the U.S. diplomatic presence in East Berlin (1977-79). At the Embassy in Athens (1987-90), he reported on domestic politics, Greek-Turkish relations and the Cyprus issue, and terrorism. At the U.S. Mission to the United Nations in New York (1983-85) he specialized in arms control and disarmament issues.
 
He has written for the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times, International Herald Tribune, Financial Times, USA Today, New York Newsday, Chicago Sun-Times, and many other publications.
 
The Arkansas Committee on Foreign Relations is a state affiliate of the American Committees on Foreign Relations.  ACFR provides a unique and valuable resource to its members, who are leaders in the academic, business, government, non-profit and media arenas of Arkansas.  They appreciate the quality of our speakers and programs, the intimate setting of our events, and the opportunity to interact and engage with crucial current international issues.
 
Luncheon meetings take place at least once a month, and are supplemented with breakfast roundtables, after-work receptions and opportunities to join visiting distinguished speakers for dinner.  As the world becomes more interconnected, and as Arkansas becomes more active in global commerce and development, ACFR fulfills a vital need to discuss international affairs.
 
To become a member, contact Warwick Sabin at 501-450-3247 or wsabin@uca.edu.

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