China-U.S. relations focus of national security forum in Des Moines
The CGSC Foundation’s Simons Center hosted a Des Moines National Security Forum on Sept. 27, 2023, with a luncheon event featuring a presentation by Dr. Joseph G. D. (Geoff) Babb, professor of history in the Department of Military History at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, at the Des Moines Embassy Club West in West Des Moines, Iowa. Brownells, headquartered in Grinnell, Iowa, was the Simons Center’s cohost for the event.
Simons Center Director Col. (Ret.) Bob Ulin welcomed the attendees from the Des Moines area business community. As lunch wound down, Lt. Col. (Ret.) John Nelson, deputy director of the Simons Center, introduced Babb who provided an overview of the history and current status of Sino-American relations. He also discussed the U.S. role in China’s “Century of Humiliation” and how that provides a backdrop to the core interests driving Xi Jinping’s current foreign and domestic policies. He also reviewed three key potential flash points and provided an assessment of a potential road ahead.
Dr. Joseph G. D. (Geoff) Babb is a professor of history in CGSC’s Department of Military History providing expertise on China. He has served on the CGSC faculty since 1991.
Prior to CGSC Babb retired from the U.S. Army as a lieutenant colonel in the military intelligence branch. Commissioned in 1973 from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, he trained as a China Foreign Area Officer in Monterey, California, and in Hong Kong and Beijing, China. He served in Washington, D.C., at the Defense Intelligence Agency and on the Joint Staff. He also was a regional desk officer in Hawaii at U.S. Pacific Command and U.S Army Pacific.
Babb holds a bachelor’s from Bowdoin College, an MPA from Clark University, a master’s in East Asian Languages and Cultures and a doctorate in history from the University of Kansas.
The Simons Center designed the Des Moines National Security Forum in the mold of its Arter-Rowland National Security Forum in Kansas City wherein members of the forum meet periodically at guest speaker events to learn about issues related to national security. To help facilitate the new program, Brownells in Grinnell, Iowa has come on board as a local partner. Brownells Chairman Pete Brownell is also the Vice Chair for the Central Region for the CGSC Foundation. The Simons Center and Brownells plan to present at least four programs each year by subject matter experts on national security issues that impact the business community.
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