International Lecture Series #1 – Ambassador Matlock discusses the Roots of the Crisis

When: September 27, 2014

From: 03:00 PM - 05:00 PM


Topic: How Did We Get Here: the “New Russia” Matlock image


Speaker: Jack F. Matlock, Jr., former U.S. Ambassador to Russia (1987-1991)


Cost: $15 CIR Members (or $48 for series of four lectures); $20 Non-members & Guests (or $60 for the series of four lectures)


Location: Santa Fe University of Art and Design, the Forum, 1600 St. Michael’s Drive


We are extremely fortunate to have Ambassador Matlock back with us a second time to give us his views on Russia in the context of the increasingly dangerous confrontation between the West and Russia over the Ukraine.  Ambassador Matlock will review “modern” Russian/U.S relations during the last quarter century and how our actions and counter actions brought us to the present threatening crisis over the Ukraine.

Personally appointed by President Reagan, Ambassador Matlock assumed his position as U.S. Ambassador to Russia in 1987 after Gorbachev signaled his desire to find ways to reduce tensions and end the Cold War between the two countries.  Matlock participated actively in advising Reagan through the many meetings and negotiations between the two heads of state. In 1991 he retired from the Foreign Service with 35 years of exemplary service. To this day he is well respected by his peers and those following him for his remarkable career and accomplishments.

Ambassador Matlock became fascinated by Russia after reading Dostoyevsky as a Duke undergraduate. He went on to serve in increasingly more important roles in the State Department culminating with his first appointment as acting Ambassador to Russia in 1981. Subsequently, President Reagan appointed him as Ambassador to Czechoslovakia and in 1983 asked him to return to Washington on the National Security Council to develop a strategy to end the arms race. During the 20-year period from 1972-1991, he attended every U.S./Russian summit meeting save one.

His account of the end of the Cold War entitled Reagan and Gorbachev: How the Cold War Ended, published in 2004 established his reputation as an historian and was generally accepted as an accurate portrayal of these unprecedented times. He taught diplomatic history and international relations at some of the best graduate and undergraduate institutions in the East: The Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton, Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs,

and Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School among others.  His languages include Czech. French, German, and Russian. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, as the embassy’s 3rd secretary in Moscow, Matlock translated messages between Kennedy and Khrushchev.

Ambassador Matlock and his wife, Rebecca, live in Princeton, NJ. They have five children and three grandchildren.

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