Republicans Gingrich and Zakheim and Democrats Young and Wilson to Debate Foreign Policy Les Gelb to moderate discussion sponsored by 12 groups Students also to debate foreign policy

January 7, 2003 4:37 pm (EST)

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For further information contact: April Wahlestedt, Director of Communications (212) 434-9544
Erin Eizenstat, Communications Coordinator, at 212-434-9536


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October 23, 2000, New York City – In the wake of the bombing of the U.S.S. Cole and the breakdown of the Middle East peace process, Republicans Newt Gingrich and Dov Zakheim will face Democrats Andrew Young and Ernest Wilson in a debate on “What Are the Threats Facing the United States? Who—Bush or Gore—Will Handle Them Better and Why?” This debate—spearheaded by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), hosted by Georgia State University, and cosponsored with Agnes Scott College, Clark Atlanta University, Kennesaw State University, Morehouse College, Morris Brown College, Oglethorpe University, Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at Georgia Institute of Technology, Spelman College, University of Georgia, and the Southern Center for International Studies—will take place on Wednesday, October 25 from 7:00 to 9:00 PM. at the Student Center at Georgia State University.

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Atlanta’s colleges and universities banded together to support the Council on Foreign Relations’ conviction that public debate on foreign policy is essential, especially as it hasn’t been addressed in electoral contests for a decade. “For years now, the public and the media have been complaining about the lack of serious, substantive debate in politics,” said Council President Leslie H. Gelb. “The candidates owe the public a serious debate if they want to be our leaders, and they owe it to themselves if they want a mandate for their policies.”

The Democratic team will feature Andrew Young, Chairman of GoodWorks International, and Ernest Wilson III, Director of the University of Maryland’s Center for International Development and Conflict Management. The Republican team will feature former Speaker of the House of Representatives Newt Gingrich and Dov Zakheim, CEO of SPC International, Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, and Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Planning and Resources from 1985-87. Leslie H. Gelb, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, will moderate the debate and take questions from the audience, composed of students, faculty, and community leaders. There will be a press availability with the speakers immediately following the debate from 9:00 to 9:30 PM.

Georgia State University

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7:00-9:00 PM, Wednesday, October 25

As a follow-on to the Congressional/expert debate, a select number of Atlanta’s colleges and universities are organizing their students to debate foreign policy on their campuses the following day, October 26. For more information, please call CFR Deputy National Director Irina Faskianos at 212/434-9465.

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This debate is part of a broader Council initiative, Campaign 2000, to foster serious public debate on U.S. foreign policy in this election year. For more information about the project, including other campus debates and online debates, check the Council’s Campaign 2000 website at


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