Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Extra Credit Opportunity Thursday

The staff of the Andrew Young Center for International Affairs at Morehouse College would like to invite you to a lecture on “DIPLOMACY: A CHANGING REQUIREMENT” by Ambassador Edward J. Perkins, former United States Ambassador to the United Nations, in the Bank of America Auditorium, Leadership Center - Thursday, February 22, 2007 from 2:25 – 3:40. Immediately following the lecture Ambassador Perkins will be signing copies of his book entitled MR. AMBASSADOR: WARRIOR FOR PEACE with Connie Cronley, foreword by George P. Shultz, preface by David L. Boren at the Morehouse College bookstore on the College campus.

“Mr. Ambassador conveys what sophisticated and effective diplomacy is all about. A remark­able journey that should inspire, inform and influence everyone it touches!” writes GEORGIE ANNE GEYER Syndicated Columnist, Universal Press Syndicate.

“Apartheid South Africa was on fire around me.” So begins the memoir of Career Foreign Service Officer Edward J. Perkins, the first black United States ambassador to South Africa. In 1986, President Ronald Reagan gave him the unparalleled assignment: dismantle apartheid without violence. As he fulfilled that assignment, Perkins was scourged by the American press, despised by the Afrikaner government, hissed at by white South African citizens, and initially boy­cotted by black South African revolutionaries, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu. His advice to President-elect George H. W. Bush helped modify American policy and hasten the release of Nelson Mandela and others from prison.

Perkins’s up-by-your-bootstraps life took him from a cotton farm in segregated Louisiana to the white elite Foreign Service, where he became the first black officer to ascend to the top position of director general. Mr. Ambassador is the story of how one man turned the page of history.

Edward J. Perkins, now retired as a U.S. Ambassador, is William J. Crowe Professor of Geopolitics and Executive Director of the International Programs Center at the University of Oklahoma. Connie Cronley is a writer with a new book of essays forthcoming from OU Press. George P. Shultz is former Secretary of State of the United States. David L. Boren, former U.S. Senator, is President of the University of Oklahoma.

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