What is Model United Nations?
In the Model United Nations project we simulated a United Nations conference for 2 days about the Syrian Refugee Crisis. During this project we learned abut the workings of the UN and global issues. We studied the Syrian civil war, Syrian refugees, and what our countries stance is on the issue. I was assigned to committee 4 where I represented Russia.
Russia is a semi-presidential federation in Asia. Currently, Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev are in power as President and Prime Minister. Under the rule of Putin, Russia has become an authoritarian society with a heavily controlled media. The Russian Federation is against taking in refugees from Syria. In fact, Russia will only be granting 300 Syrian students scholarships to enter this year. Russia is more interested in addressing the Syrian refugee crisis at the root of its cause. Russia as allied with Syria and assists by providing weaponry to the Syrian government to fight ISIS. Russia has also protected Syria in the UN Security Council by vetoing resolutions that would hold the Assad Regime accountable for breaking international law in the use of chemical weapons against Syrians. Many believe that Putin is allied with the Assad Regime as means to gain influence in the Middle East. As I was portraying Russia in this MUN conference, I tried to emphasize the threat of ISIS and pull focus from others antagonizing Assad.
As I was researching my country, I found plenty of sources criticizing Russia for standing with Syria. I found this article extremely helpful because it gave a very direct explanation to Russia's view on the Syrian government and chemical weapons. In this article I learned that Russia uses its hate for the "western world" to fuel its motives for supporting Syria. Finding this article was quite difficult but assisted my research because it was first hand reporting from a reliable source.
My Position Paper - Russia
The key to writing my position paper was a foundation of thorough research. Because I knew Russia's stance on the issue I found it easier to write a strong position paper. Throughout the multiple drafts it took to finalize my paper I focused on the wording I used, trying to increase the professionalism of my paper. Some of the most helpful pieces of feedback I received were about further research I could do to strengthen my arguments. After receiving this feedback I did more research about ISIS and included more statistics in my paper. I am most proud of how accurately my paper portrays the Russia's perspective on the issue.
Again, having thorough research really helped me write my opening speech. I had a lot of fun writing this piece because it was the foundation I used to start convincing other countries in my committee to side with me. One of the key parts I edited most in my speech was selecting and using information that would benefit my argument and outdo opposing countries. I was extremely proud of my opening speech because of my articulate writing and strong delivery.
I really enjoyed my experience during the MUN Conference. My committee was very active and constantly had exciting debates. I was very proud of how invested I was in my country's views. I had to constantly push myself during the conference because the views that I was representing were very polar to my own. I think because my personal views were opposing, I was able to anticipate arguments that would be used against my country and develop strong rebuttals.
An important moment in the conference was when my committee was debating about the Syrian government and their use of chemical weapons. Although I had few allies that stood with me in supporting the Syrian government, we were very prepared to defend our arguments and even persuade other countries.
As was mentioned before, strong research was really the key to being successful in this project. I worked very hard to research and represent Russia's views as was recognized when I was awarded the "most accurate portrayal of country" award.