Skip to content Dr Richard Smith
FCDO Principal Historian
Part of FCDO Historians UK at the UN
23rd October 2020 London, UK
The Foreign Office and the creation of the UNPub quiz question: where was the first meeting of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly held?
Answer: London, in the Methodist Central Hall on 10 January 1946.
London features heavily in early UN history. The Security Council met for the first time in Church House, Westminster, the following week. Church House was also the location for the UN Preparatory Commission, which convened in the autumn of 1945 to decide the administrative framework for the new organisation.
Foreign Office officials played a key role in planning and establishing the UN at the Dumbarton Oaks conference (August to October 1944), where the Big Four met to discuss setting up a new international body to replace the League of Nations. They played a similar role at the subsequent United Nations Conference on International Organization, which met in..
image from videoCGTN America
Published on Feb 27, 2019
In June 2018, Donald Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to meet with a leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Trump and Kim made history with their summit in Singapore. Prior to the US-DPRK summit the DPRK and South Korea also held an inter-Korean Summit in April 2018. Since those meetings, the DPRK has thawed some of its diplomatic and cultural relationships in Asia and with the United States, and began a new round of public diplomacy. [JB emphasis].
Tarık Oğuzlu, dailysabah.com, 31.05.2019
While realist power politics take precedence over liberalist opportunism, the great powers are both shaping and confronting this new reality
[T]he world has recently witnessed a strong comeback of realist thinking in international relations. As nationalism and geopolitics have seen a strong revival, we are no longer on the verge of transcending into a borderless world in which universalism overshadows particularism. …
The evolution of Chinese foreign policy over the last decades does also suggest that a realist turn has become more noticeable in recent years. The more powerful China has become in terms of material power capabilities, the more assertively it has begun to question the decades-old American hegemony in East and Southeast Asia, as well as promote its political-economy model beyond its borders through such initiatives as Belt and Road. China's efforts to entice its neighbors through lucrative free trade agreements and..
Daniel Birdsall, February 26, 2019, sites.tufts.edu/fletcheradmissions; see also
If you’ve poked around our website enough, or otherwise have more than a passing familiarity with Fletcher, you’ve likely come across the term “public diplomacy” [JB emphasis] at some point. While it mostly makes intuitive sense to me, I’ve rarely stopped to think specifically what we’re talking about when we refer to public diplomacy. An interesting piece of web content recently trickled down to me by way of one of Fletcher’s longest-tenured faculty members, as well as our Dean of Admissions, which I thought worth sharing. At the risk of becoming an irksome content regurgitator, I’d encourage readers to check out this recent post by former diplomat and current blogger John Brown. Brown highlights the work of Edmund Gullion, a former NATO SACEUR and Dean of The Fletcher School in the 60s and 70s (a general career path shared by our previous Dean, Admiral James Stavridis). Searching for a descriptor for the..
Thursday, May 18th 2017 VOA’s alleged mishandling of a Chinese insider’s interview shouldn’t overshadow the important work done by it and the other U.S. government-sponsored broadcasters. See my latest commentary in The American Interest: The Voice of America (VOA) celebrated its 75th anniversary in March, but it didn’t have much time to savor its