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2021 Halifax International Security Forum

November 19-21, 2021

Halifax, Nova Scotia



Sunday, November 21





with Andy Fillmore, Member of Parliament for Halifax, House of Commons, Canada


Breakfast Sessions Off the record

At the Summit of Democracy

Professor Walter Russell Mead

Ravenel B. Curry III Distinguished Fellow in Strategy and Statesmanship, Hudson Institute

Dr. Darrell Bricker

Global CEO, Ipsos Public Affairs

Louis Rubio

Chairman Emeritus of the Mexican Council on Foreign Relations and Chairman of Mexico-Evalua

Sunny Cheung

Advisory Board, Hong Kong Democracy Council

Moderator Dr. Daniel Twining

President, International Republican Institute

Geopolitics Today: Toward Tech Mate

Major General Michelle McGuinness

Deputy Director for Commonwealth Integration, Defence Intelligence Agency, Australia

Michael Rogers

CEO, The MSRogers Group LLC

Moderator Mr. Patrick Tucker

Technology Editor, Defense One

Refugees: Lessons from “None is Too Many”

Mr. Mark Hetfield

President and CEO, HIAS

Minister Falah Bakir

Senior Foreign Policy Adviser to the President of the Kurdistan Regional Government

Professor Solange Marquez

Vice-President of the Mexican Council on Foreign Relations

Moderator Ms. Ia Meurmishvili

Voice of America, Georgia


Plenary 7- China’s Quantum Leap Backward ON THE RECORD


Mr. James Appathurai

Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges, NATO

Senator Joni Ernst

United States Senator for Iowa

Rear Admiral Michael Manazir

Vice President, Boeing Global Services Business Development

Moderator Mr. Josh Rogin

Columnist, The Washington Post

It has been 50 years since President Nixon announced to the world he would ‘seek normalization’ between the United States and China. Democratic nations looked on as China opened its economy, and its society to the world in the pursuit of a ‘Great Leap Forward’. Today, the world’s two largest economies, the U.S. and China, are locked in an ideological and technological competition. Were we naive to imagine China’s prodigious rise would result in a more open, accountable and democratic society? What do we do with a global actor determined on patrol by algorithm? Given the export of AI surveillance technology to autocracies across the world, how do democracies stop the spread of this technological virus?
Josh Rogin of The Washington Post challenged U.S. Senator Joni Ernst to answer for the preparedness of the United States to regain the competitive edge in the fight against autocracy. Boeing VP, Rear Admiral Michael Manazir and James Appathurai, NATO’s Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges, debated the rapid acceleration of China’s cyber, nuclear and military capabilities. Can businesses continue to partner with the CCP on technological and security matters without considering the construction of concentration camps and the pervasive reach of the military in commercial matters in China?
Get in the game because there is a game on, and we’re not playing. Democracies must step-up and show-up to #StandTogetherOnChina.


Coffee Break


Plenary 8- ––Keep the Faith ON THE RECORD


Admiral Rob Bauer

Chair of the Military Committee, NATO

Dr. The Secret

Founder and CEO of Pro-Health International

Moderator Mr. James Coomarasamy

Senior Presenter, BBC Radio and World Service

President Biden has called for a move from ‘relentless war to relentless diplomacy’ less than three months after the U.S. withdrew forces from Afghanistan, following a 20-year engagement.
Democracies are rethinking how they engage with the rest of the world in pursuit of prosperity and freedom–concepts that are more interconnected than ever before. Dealing with the global challenge of autocratic governments on the ascent, climate change and a global pandemic, requires government by the people, for the people.

Who holds the key to unlocking the door to the future; military personnel, health educators, civil activists, or members of parliament? Admiral Rob Bauer, Chair of the NATO Military Committee, Dr. Iko Ibanga Founder and CEO of Pro-Health International, Mai El-Sadany from The Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy and German MP Stephan Mayer grappled with these questions. The panel discussed military coups in Africa, multi-layered democratic collapse in the Middle East, and democratic fatigue in the world’s most established democracies.
The flashpoint of the January 6th attack on the Capitol Building called the resilience of democracy in the West into question and showed that the path ahead will not always be well-travelled. Who will carry the torch forward and keep the faith in democratic institutions and governments alive on this journey?


Closing Lunch