Condoleezza Rice Discusses Barbara Bush, North Korea and Advice for Young Women at SMU Tower Center

condoleezza rice at smu
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice with the HCM Tower Scholars after her talk April 18.

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke at the SMU Tower Center April 18 on a panel with former U.S. Ambassador to Portugal Thomas Stephenson. Senior Fellow Jeffrey A. Engel, director of the Center for Presidential History and moderator of the talk, opened the discussion with memories of Barbara Bush, who passed away the night before.

Event Recap | National Security Symposium

The SMU Tower Center held its eighth annual National Security Symposium titled, “National Defense: Budgets, Resources and Readiness,” featuring two panels each comprised of three experts and a moderator April 11. With the recent release of the Trump administration’s National Security Strategy, National Defense Strategy, and the budget for fiscal year 2018, the panelists had plenty to dissect in their presentations. Here’s what we learned from the discussions.

Recap | Economic Impact of the Republican Tax Bill

economic impact republican tax bill
SMU’s Thomas Osang listens to Ryan Bourne from the Cato Institute present at the SMU Tower Center March 6.

President Donald Trump signed the Republican tax bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, into law in December. It was the greatest one-time reduction in the corporate tax rate, from 35 percent to 21 percent, in U.S. history.

Cato Institute’s Ryan Bourne visited the SMU Tower Center to discuss the economic implications of the bill. Bourne examined the impact through three inter-linked lenses: the direct financial impact on families, the impact on economic efficiency and growth, and the impact on the federal debt burden.

Recap | America’s Next War and How to Prevent It

recap america's next warPaul B. Stares, director of the Center for Preventive Action at the Council on Foreign Relations, presented ideas from his new book in a talk at the Tower Center “America’s Next War and How to Prevent It.”

Stares argues that there’s been a reversal of post-Cold War trends. Growing friction among great power countries and increasing organized violence in unstable regions of the world make the case that the United States is facing a growing risk of conflict.

Students Interview Ambassador Swanee Hunt

Students Interview Ambassador Swanee Hunt
Swanee Hunt answers questions from HCM Tower Scholars before her Tower Center lecture Feb. 19.

Three Highland Capital Management Tower Scholars interviewed former Ambassador Swanee Hunt about issues facing women and starting a career in D.C. before her talk at the Tower Center Feb. 19, “Rwandan Women Rising.”

HCM Tower Scholar Morgan Peterson: 64% of Rwanda’s National Parliament is made up of women. How can that model of representation be implemented all across the world?

Recap | How India is Making its Place in the World

India is making its place
The CFR’s Alyssa Ayres presents her new book at the Tower Center Feb. 20.

Alyssa Ayres, Senior Fellow for India, Pakistan, and South Asia at the Council of Foreign relations, visited the SMU Tower Center to talk about her new book, Our Time Has Come: How India is Making Its Place in the World. India has the third largest military in the world, it has the fifth largest defense budget, and it’s the world’s seventh largest economy.

Event Recap | The Duty to Disobey Illegal Nuclear Strike Orders

With President Trump’s increasingly provocative tweets directed at North Korea and Kim Jong-un, people have becoming increasingly concerned with the seemingly unquestioned power the president has to order nuclear strikes. SMU Professor of Law Anthony Colangelo was no different. He drafted a paper on why there is a duty to disobey illegal nuclear strike orders, believing that in most scenarios, but not all, the use of such weapons would constitute a war crime.

Speaker Q&A | The Life and Ideas of Liu Xiaobo

perry link discusses liu xiaobo
China expert Perry Link speaks at the SMU
Tower Center-Asian Studies program Feb. 8.

The SMU Tower Center and Asian Studies hosted Perry Link, author and translator of many influential works on Chinese language, literature, human rights and cultural history, at SMU Feb. 8 for the program “The Life and Ideas of Liu Xiaobo.” Liu Xiaobo was China’s Nobel Peace Prize laureate before he died in July while still serving a prison sentence for inciting subversion of the state. He was an outspoken critic of both the West and China, a poet, and a scholar. HCM Tower Scholar Destiny Rose Murphy interviewed Link about his research into Xiaobo’s life before the program.

Symposium Recap | Japan-Mexico-Texas: Exploring Politics and Economics

Japan Mexico Texas Tower Center
The First panel discusses the politics of Japan, Mexico and Texas Jan. 30.

The SMU Tower Center Sun & Star Program on Japan and East Asia partnered with the SMU Mission Foods Texas-Mexico Center for an all-day discussion of the Japan-Mexico-Texas economic and political relationship Jan. 30.