Page 55 - Foreign Service Journal - September 2013

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THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
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SEPTEMBER 2013
55
ing months. Its great brutality in East Timor in 1999, following
the decision of the people of East Timor to become indepen-
dent of Indonesia, led the United States finally to suspend
military-to-military cooperation.
Did your dissent lead to any change in policy?
I believe that my dissent laid the groundwork for the U.S.
government decision to suspend military assistance.
What was the impact of the dissent on your career?
I received very critical employee evaluation reports that
I believe were directly related to my dissent. I was, however,
pleased to see all members of my team honored with well-
deserved awards. I believe this was testament to an excellent
political team.
What was the impact of the dissent award on your career?
Te critical tone of my EERs while in Jakarta, coupled with
very critical evaluations I had received as the result of my dis-
sents while serving as special envoy for Afghanistan a decade
earlier, led to the end of my Foreign Service career. I had one
post-Jakarta tour in the State Department—as director for
international labor in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights
and Labor—where I received the Secretary’s Career Achieve-
ment Award.
n
During his Foreign Service career, 1975 to 2001, Edmund McWil-
liams served in Vientiane, Bangkok, Moscow, Kabul (periodically as
chief of mission), Islamabad (as special envoy to Afghanistan, 1988-
1989), Managua, Bishkek (as frst chief of mission to open the em-
bassy), Dushanbe (as frst chief of mission to open the embassy), and
Jakarta, as well as stateside in the department and as a diplomat-
in-residence at the University of New Mexico. McWilliams now lives
in White Oaks, N.M., while continuing human rights and environ-
ment advocacy work in Washington, D.C., and in New Mexico.
“I believe that my dissent laid the
groundwork for the U.S. government
decision to suspend military assistance.”
–Edmund McWilliams