President Rokke leaves this weekend for a
conference in Bucharest, Romania, where he addresses the subject
of building leadership and integrity in this emerging democratic
country. His trip is sponsored by the non-profit Institute
for Defense Analysis.
As with several former eastern European states,
Romania has encountered many potholes on the road to democracy.
It would like to join NATO; but in order to
do so, its government, economy, and security forces must meet
standards set by the other members.
The upcoming conference (November 4-6) of
high-level government officials and military commanders will
address some of the obstacles that challenge the country in
a time of transition.
President Rokke will deliver the keynote
address and lead a series of seminars at the conference. “We’ll
place particular emphasis on imperatives for leadership, character,
and integrity that accompany Romania’s transition,”
Romania overthrew its monstrous leader, Nicolae
Ceausescu, on Christmas Day 1989, when a provisional government,
the Popular Salvation Front, fueled by a populist uprising,
executed the dictator and his equally hated wife. Since then,
the country has struggled to reform its economy, government,
and military forces.
President Rokke participated in a similar
conference at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security
Studies in Germany this summer, whose participants included
several countries that hope to become NATO members.