Passport for September 2020

This is an online version of the monthly newsletter of the World Affairs Council of the Monterey Bay Area (WACMB). You may click here to see other online issues or click here to reach the archive of recent issues in PDF format. 

Issues Around the World in the Age of Covid-19

Check your email on the scheduled days for links to these videos

September 15, 2020
Anshu Chatterjee
Naval Postgraduate School

Narendra Modi’s Nationalist Agenda in the Era of the Pandemic

The past decade has been one of the most challenging decades in India’s modern history. The pandemic introduced a new variable into a country that is facing a declining economy and rising challenges from China, along with the simultaneous rise of Hindu nationalism. In 2019, the BJP, India’s Hindu nationalist party, won a majority for the first time. Immediately after winning its majority, the BJP made two controversial decisions: one removing the autonomy of the Kashmir region, and the second reducing the rights of noncitizens, producing a backlash in civil society. Professor Anshu Chatterjee sheds light on these issues and the implications of the spread of Covid-19 in this setting. Anshu Chatterjee is a Senior Lecturer in the National Security Affairs Department at the Naval Postgraduate School. She received her PhD in Asian Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.

September 30, 2020
Jonathan Czarnecki
Naval War College

Globalization, Governance, and Change

Globalization, the international system that has become a defining force in world affairs and its governance within nation states, can be credited with lifting over a billion people out of severe poverty. But there is increasing opposition to the international integration of capital, technology, and information across national borders. Dr. Jonathan Czarnecki analyses this critical debate and provides insight into our future. Jonathan Czarnecki is Professor of Joint Military/Maritime Operations in the US Naval War College Program at the Naval Postgraduate School. A retired Army Colonel with 27 years of experience in the field, Dr. Czarnecki earned his PhD in Political Science and Applied Social Statistics from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He is the author of over 60 scholarly articles on national security and international relations.

Issues Around the World in the Age of Covid-19

The following is the tentative schedule and list of topics for upcoming episodes of WACMB’s “Quick Takes” video program. On the scheduled day, you will receive an email with a link that will take you to the video.

  • October 15: Bradley Strawser, NPS – Ethics and Public Policy
  • October 30: Anna Grzymala-Busse, Stanford University – The Erosion of Democracy in Hungary and Poland
  • November 15: TBD
  • November 30: Jonathan Lipman, Mt. Holyoke College – Muslims in China Today

Remember: all the past episodes of our “Quick Takes: Issues Around the World in the Age of Covid-19” series, along with many videos of previous luncheon talks, are available on the Speakers, Topics, and Videos page of this website.

Discussion Groups

WACMB coordinates two ongoing discussion groups that address a new current topic each month. The sessions are are free and open to the public.

Free MIIS Lecture Series

The Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS) is a longtime and valued partner of WACMB. We are pleased to share their announcement of a free virtual lecture series this fall. Presentations will be followed by Q&A sessions with the audience.

The lectures will take place on Zoom, and advance registration is required in order to receive a Zoom invitation. To register, go to and follow the prompts there. Here’s the schedule:

  • Wednesday, September 9, 1:00 – 2:00 PDT
    Professor Pushpa Iyer, Director of the MIIS Center for Conflict Studies, will speak on Pandemic, Protests, and Politics: Prospects for Peace
  • Wednesday, October 14, 4:30 – 5:30 PDT
    Professor Jason Blazakis, Director of the MIIS Center on Terrorism, Extremism, and Counter-Terrorism, will speak on Delving Into the Extremism of White Supremacy: Who Are They, and What Do They Want?
  • Wednesday, October 28, 12:00 – 1:00 PDT
    Professor Jason Scorse, Director of the MIIS Center for the Blue Economy, will speak on The Ocean Climate Action Plan: Turning Ideas Into Advocacy
  • Wednesday, November 11, 4:30 – 5:30 PST
    Professor William Potter, Director of the MIIS James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, and Aubrey Means, MIIS MA Candidate in Non-proliferation Studies and Terrorism Studies, will speak on The US-Russian Nuclear Predicament: Are We Doomed to Cooperate or Simply Doomed?

Crossword Puzzle

For your Shelter-in-Place entertainment, the World Affairs Council of the Monterey Bay Area presents its first-ever crossword puzzle! Answers will appear in the October Passport.

You can print this page from your web browser and fill in by hand or click the button below to get a version you can fill in online and print or save.


This is the monthly newsletter of the World Affairs Council of the Monterey Bay Area (WACMB). Founded in 1951, the council is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization established to promote the presentation, discussion, and study of international affairs. WACMB is a tax-exempt 501 (c) (3) organization, EIN-770301206. Contributions are tax deductible as permitted by law. WACMB sponsors monthly luncheons, discussion groups, and student scholarships.

Corporate and institutional support for the World Affairs Council of the Monterey Bay Area is provided by:

  • California State University Monterey Bay
  • Defense Language Institute
  • Monterey Peninsula College
  • Naval Postgraduate School
  • Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey
  • Rancho Canada
  • Horan & Lloyd Law Firm