THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNALTake AFSA With You! Change your address online, visit us at www.afsa.org/ address Or Send changes to: AFSAMembership Department 2101 E Street NW Washington, DC 20037 Moving?
Unfortunately such projects are no
longer supported by the U.S. government,
which is a huge mistake. We still have the
best university system in the world, and
we are the first-choice destination for
international students around the globe.
This would be a much wiser use of our
limited development funding than the
current “flavor of the month” approach,
which varies from administration to
Learning from Northern
Having spent nearly a quarter of my
career dealing with Northern Ireland at
one level or another, I read Andrew Sens’excellent article with great interest (“Eth- nic and Sectarian Conflict—Two Core Issues,” April FSJ ).
Given our current political environ-
ment and the many cleavages in our
society, I could not help but reflect on
how the two central concepts of the Good
Friday Agreements might be applied here
Goodness knows, our polity could use
a generous dose of parity of esteem and
equal application of the law.
Remembering Ed DillerySteve Honley’s April Appreciation of Ed Dillery was superb. The Foreign Service
is loaded with fine people, distinguished
people of all manner. To my mind Ed Dil-
lery was the ultimate gentleman—profes-
sionally, socially, in tennis or over a bowl
of Vietnamese pho.
Ed took time to understand people,
their behavior, their attitudes, their
rationale. Of a strong analytical bent, Ed
showed no harshness or hatred of anyone.
At his most extreme, he showed a certain
level of chagrin.
Ed was a wonderful addition to the
State Department, continuing well into his
retirement years. He was one of the finest
gentlemen I have known.
Very occasionally in life you meet an
individual whose personality combines
lightning and sunshine. Jonita Whitaker
was such a person.
Jonita’s personal dynamismwas
compelling; she had vision and the energy
to carry complex projects to completion.
And she did so with an infectious enthusi-
asm that engaged colleagues and all those
with whom she interacted.
Consequently, news of her abrupt
death on April 7 struck like an unexpected
I first met Jonita when she assumed
directorship of the Bureau of Political-
Military Affairs’ Office of the Coordinator
of the Foreign Policy Advisor Program
(PM/POLAD) in June 2008.
For many years, PM/POLAD had
seemed to me a tranquil, semi-backwater
focused on providing senior FSOs to
senior U.S. military commanders in Wash-
ington and overseas. Its directors were
normally senior male political officers,
sometimes on brief bridge-equivalent
assignments and sometimes on their
“tombstone” tour in Washington.
Jonita was very different: not male,
not a political officer, neither a pol-mil
specialist nor someone with military cre-
dentials, and not a “Europeanist” NATO
hand, Arabist or East Asian expert.