Sunday, October 30, 2005

New York, New York, New York


New York
I arrived here yesterday. Taking the bus from Chinatown at 12 noon and arrived here at 4:30 p.m. at Chinatown New York. It’s funny. My first impression is new york full of Chinese again? Oh no.. Well, it is Chinatown by the way. I tried to ask them where the phone booth (public phone) and surprising that some said “No English” Well.. little bit confusing. Living here but no English? But that’s it. Yeah, only some.. Cool...

I waited for Rebecca and Tony picking me there at Diamond Corner. After minutes, finally I met them. Wow.. It’s great.. They are really cool.. They are just like used to be; friendly and have a lot jokes. Then we went to Malaysian Restaurant for meals and heading for Time Square through the underground train.

New York is there. Finding time square, wow.. It’s really huge city.. The real metropolitan. It’s amazing. The bunch of people everywhere and stores are just there. Skyscraper.. diversity of the people.. well… that’s the New York. This morning we plan to go to Statue Liberty. New York claims ownership of Statue Liberty while actually it’s on the area of New Jersey State..:) That’s what I heard from Rebecca. I stayed in their apartment. It’s a good place. I like it.
Let’s see how the adventure goes today….

Spartly Negotiation

Booz Allen

Myanmar Delegation

China Style

US with Philipines

Friday, October 28

Spartly Presentation
Booz Allen.

We spent the whole day in Booz Allen for Spartly Presentation. After presentation from each delegation, then we had negotiations. A lot breaks as ASEAN countries wanted every agreement among the caucus decided by discussion. At the first session, Myanmar and Philippines kicked US and other observer countries; Japan and Korea to be out of the negotiation process and meetings. The meeting chaired by Leigh instead of one of us. My feeling was the chair was bias.

After all the negotiations, it’s hard to come up with any solutions over the spartly dispute. I mean only implementing action in which were very general could be agreed from the whole day sessions. No any real conclusion how to overcome the dispute over the spartly islands. But that’s it. That’s the real world. It’s about process. Moreover, ASEAN way in certain contexts exist. First, ASEAN countries do not like any hegemony or domination over them. Secondly, we need to talk and to be heard much. Thirdly, we like informal meetings as it’s the culture..

Director Cato Institute

Another sunny today. We went to Cato Institute. The director was cool in the sense that he has open minded I think. He purposes the free trade. He talked much about the free trade and its relationship with poverty reduction, democracy, human right, the elevation standard of life. He discussed about the fear of global trade appearing in the United States and outside of United States. He gave fair facts about it.

Then we headed to Department of Interior talking about the territories of US in Pacific Island. It’s great to know that Micronesia, Palao and were associated to the United States before as their strategic partner for pacific security.
Department of Interior Personnel
On the Gate of the Dept. Abhay, Catherine and Prakash
Still on the gate

The Chinese arising is a hot issue here. It seems that US pay attention very closed to Chinese arising these days. Despites US is fear that Chinese will replace US role as a super power country, US sees that cooperation is the only way to deal with this communist government. Worries is out there but still in the understandable extent. The surprising thing is China play its global role significantly and tacitly and what US regards "not transparent" Again China is growing though they need to improve it’s records for democracy and human right. I do not get the official strategy of China perspective on this matter.

NCAPA (National Council of Asian Pacific Americans)
This discussion is more about domestic problems of immigrants in United States in which are complicated as well. The activists here are young and that’s great to see their bright and smart view how to work on. Their presentations are based on their research data. Aleyamma works here. NCAPA is a coalition from many NGOs. I actually still wonder how the coalition runs.

Waiting bus after NCAPA session; Miyuki
Starla; NOt easy but that's it life starla..

Monk is thinking hard or asleep?


Cloudy and raining. That’s the first impression when I arrived in Washington, Saturday October 21. Despite all the stories I heard, I just wore my t-shirt. But now I feel Washington is real cold. At least, that’s for me.. who used to be in sunny place. Washington is alive in the day but not at night. But these couple days are just sunny days. I love it. I really enjoy and understand what the sunlight means here..


Friday, October 28, 2005

Research Institute

Washington, October 26, 2005

Beautiful Day. I can’t believe today is really great day just because it was sunny day. Today was the second sunny day since I arrive here on last Saturday. Beautiful with the leafs turning to be brown or yellow. It was just great.

Today we went to IMF. After tight security screening we entered IMF building and Marlene Thorn, Human Resource Department gave session about the third culture in the IMF. It’s simply about the culture from around the world are melted in the IMF enviromental work. The discussed more about how they managed their human resource to have different experience from one department to another department or to have the cross-cultural experiences. I didn’t have any question here just because there’s no substantial discussion to ask. Even I have a question about the IMF policy toward Indonesian economy in which I think IMF should change, I believe that Thorn is not in the position to answer that. Some of other questions dealing with topics out of the human resource were not able to answer by her. So I just was being a good listener. By the way, as she confessed that World Bank is IMF’s sister.

Then we went to Brookings Institution. This is a non-profit institution as a research institution. It’s interesting about the presentation today. This session much discussed about what Brookings does for research for varied topics. McNeal discussed more about the rising Chinese and energy. What I learned from here is that there are a lot research institutions like Brookings, Heritage Foundation, Meridian, CSIS, Cato Institute and more. When I discussed this to Tashi working for research institution in Bhutan, there was a point we agreed on. It’s about the independence of the kind of institution. We agreed that as long as the institution earns its funding resources from government, we don’t believe that the institution is pure independent. These research institutions become “think tanks” of the policy making by United States government and Legislature. Secondly, we know that in our countries in which are still under developed we need that kind of this institutions more. We found that this kind of institution is not as many as needed to form a policy. I’m kind of interesting to find this kind research independent.

And I think Mc Neal is right that we need to build network here. We need to meet and to talk to many people as many as possible here.

Then we went to have lunch at DuPont Circle in which we stay in. I gave telephone to Yuran and I found that she needs help for finance reports as CA needs that. I’m a kind of confused too and I don’t have any direction at all to her. Well.., again, it’s not easy to give any guidelines as I’m out of the LPAM-Nias matter these days and it’s hard for me to just mention what should be done. Besides, I told her many times to do weekly report but never done except couple times when I really forced her to make the report. Now, we found that we are really not in good situation for financial matter report. Hmm.. Let me think about it.

Then we went to House of Representative building meeting Eni F. H. Faleomavaega, the representative of American Samoa in congress. He serves for 9 terms or 18 years already. He’s a kind of humble man. He’s from Democrat Party. He deals with Asia Pacific issue. This man is just really good. As an old politician, he must have a lot political experiences of the United States. And again, this is confirmation of what happens in United States. He is right when he said that united States in some aspects are just great for economy, power and things like that. But at the same time he admits that they also have beggar on the street, a lot domestic problems here. This is a fair and wise view to see itself I mean to see United States. This wise perspective recommended us to get what the good sides and to bring it home. That’s perfect. I like that kind of wisdom. He also talked about Hawaiian in which he said that the American people here thinks that the native Hawaiian no exist anymore in which in fact it’s not true at all. Yes, native Hawaiian is in their struggle now for a better life.

Then we went to Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. The representative of Republican Party presented by Keith Luse and Democratic Party was presented by Frank Jannuzi.

But here what I figure out about EWC and the link with the politician here in Washington. I think EWC has a closed connection with the Washington’s politician here. And I think EWC is more closed with Democrat Party. Well,.. As you know that Eni Faleomavaega and the Democratic Party committee Frank attended the meeting with EWC alumni. For me myself, that’s okay. I mean, I will be regret of course if I found that EWC has closed relationship with Republican Party or with Bush administration in which I think suck. And the way of democrat party people thinks are really just cool without any intention to put the superiority of US as a main part of the way of their thinking.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Sunday III

DuPont Circle We Stay in

Sunday II

Another Pics of Today

Me and Jinli

Jinli and Adriana

Emilio, Jinli and Me

Emilio, Adriana and Me

White House

Kitty, Emilio and Quinn

White House

Karin's Mom

Jinli, Adriana, Tashi and Miwa (Karin and Her Mom)


At the Fence of White HOuse

Tamara and Yulia

Another Pics of today