Page 8 - Foreign Service Journal - March 2013

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MARCH 2013
Henderson High
Jane Loefer (December, “Beyond the
Fortress Embassy”) has given us a very
informative and timely review of consid-
erations that must always be taken into
account in constructing our diplomatic
facilities, including the two that are most
important: design and location. To the
photographs she included to illustrate
her points, I’d like to add another, of
Embassy Tehran.
Built in the 1950s in a style I’d say
resembles the U.S. suburban schools of
those days, the building was nicknamed
“Henderson High,” after Ambassador
Loy Henderson. Te ofces were built in
Tehran’s busiest and newest commercial
district at the time.
Heavily fortifed by the time of the
1979-1981 hostage crisis, the building
became better known as “Fort Apache”—
an ironic title for those who remember it
best for its prison facilities.
Today, Henderson High is used by
Iran’s regime as a training facility for its
Revolutionary Guards, and as a museum
highlighting the alleged accomplish-
ments of the revolution.
Tose of us who knew it then are
confdent that the classic real estate con-
siderations of design and location will be
given better informed attention when,
inshallah, there are once again American
diplomatic facilities in Tehran.
Bruce Laingen
Ambassador, retired
Bethesda, Md.
Good Reason to Be Proud
Ben Barber’s article in your January
issue, “Te Millennium Challenge Cor-
poration: Of to a Good Start,” is informa-
tive and balanced. Even so, it does not
recognize the full extent of what the MCC
has already achieved in a relatively short
period of time.
Te fact is that MCC partner coun-
tries, including the nine that have com-
pleted compacts as of the end of 2012,
can boast of truly remarkable progress
on delivering tangible benefts for their
citizens through needed policy reforms,
improved institutional capacity and the
building of desperately needed infra-
Examples of successful policy reforms
include legislation that gives women in
Lesotho full legal rights, improved prop-
erty rights in a number of countries, and
massive increases in fnancing for road
maintenance in El Salvador, Nicaragua
and Honduras. Not only do these reforms
contribute to the sustainability of MCC
investments, but they also create a better
environment for long-term economic
MCC programs vary according to each
partner country’s priorities and what it
needs to overcome specifc constraints to
economic growth. Programs completed
so far have improved transportation in
critical commercial corridors, increased
access to electricity and clean water,
expanded irrigated agriculture, and
helped farmers transition to high-value
Our partner countries are justifably
proud of what they have accomplished
with U.S. support to help themselves
break the cycle of aid dependency and
create a future of greater economic
opportunity. And so is the MCC.
Patrick Fine
Vice President for Compact Operations
Millennium Challenge Corporation
Washington, D.C.
Pros of International
I read with interest the December
article by Elizabeth Power on home-
schooling (“No, Really, the World Is
My Classroom! Homeschooling in the
Foreign Service”). While I believe all
Embassy Tehran during the 1950s.