2018 Great Decisions Schedule


Great Decisions is held on Thursday mornings in February and March at 10:30 a.m.

The 2018 dates are these Thursdays:  February 1nd, 8th, 15th, 22nd and  March 1rd, 8th, 15th, 22nd.


These are the topics for 2018. The date and speaker for the remaining  sessions will be published here when details are settled.



Turkey:  A Partner in Crisis - February 1


Ambassador Robert Pearson


Of all NATO allies, Turkey represents the most daunting challenge for the trump administration.  In the wake of a failed military coup in July 2016, the autocratic trend in Ankara took a turn for th worse.  One year on, an overwhelming majority of the population considers the United States to be their country's greatest security threat.  In this age of a worsening "clash of civilizations" between Islam and the West, even more important than its place on the map is what Turkey symbolically represents as the most institutionallyWesternized Muslim country in the world.





Russia's Foreign Policy - February 8


Speaker: Dr. Dimitar Bechev (Published Book: "Rival Power: Russia in Southeast Europe")

Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia is projecting an autocratic model of governance abroad and working to undermine the influence of liberal democracies, namely along Russia’s historical borderlands. Russia caused an international uproar in 2016, when it interfered in the U.S. presidential contest. But Putin’s foreign policy toolkit includes other instruments, from alliances with autocrats to proxy wars with the U.S. in Georgia, Ukraine and Syria. How does Putin conceive of national interests, and why do Russian citizens support him? How should the United States respond to Putin’s foreign policy ambitions?




  U.S. Global Engagement and the Military - March 15