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International Atomic Energy Agency – IAEA

A simulation of the nuclear arms race between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

The nuclear annihilation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the United States did not only ignite the devastating fire of destruction that raged the Japanese mainland, it also gave birth to what is known as “The Arms Race.” The Arms Race was a competition for dominance over nuclear warfare between the United States of America and the Soviet Union in the period distinguishably known as the Cold War. 

During the years following the end of WW2, America had a monopoly of specific knowledge on raw materials needed for the development of nuclear weaponry. Fearing such dominance, the Soviet Union began collecting intelligence to keep up with its adversary. As political tensions accumulated, both sides began to develop new and improved weapons of mass destruction, in a fight for nuclear superiority. This became known as the “Arms Race”. The fear of inevitable destruction grew stronger each day and so did the widespread worry that humanity would perish. Espionage played a huge role during these turbulent times. Spies on either sides were commissioned to gather information that could direct the course of history. 

Delegates in this council are classified in 2 main administrations, one representing the USA, while the other would represent the Soviet Union. They would be referred to as ‘advisors’ of their respective countries. Spies would be privately assigned to stir up controversy and be of help to their respective side. This council will take its “advisers” back in time to the turbulent period of the Arms race focusing primarily on the Cuban Missile Crisis. As tensions are accumulating between the United States and the Soviet Union, Kennedy and Khrushchev will be tasked with directing the course of history that is about to be determined at the hands of their advisers. The stakes have never been higher and the decisions have never been tougher! 

The goal is to reach an understanding through the use of diplomacy and negotiation to avoid nuclear annihilation, thus maintaining peace and stability.

Voyage to the Future

Issue 1: Confronting the tolls of our deteriorating planet as a result of climate change.

While some places around the world are getting warmer, others are getting colder. The Earth’s climate continues to change as time progresses. During the past 35 years, there has been an increase in the emission of carbon dioxide and other human-made emissions into the atmosphere. The past five years have held a record of having the highest global temperature rise, leading to oceans having to absorb the heat. Additionally, both the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have decreased in mass. Between 1993 and 2016, Greenland lost an average of 286 billion tons of ice per year whereas Anatrtica lost an average of 127 billion tons of ice per year during the same time period. Furthermore, the Alps, Himalayas, Andes, Rockies, Alaska and Africa have all been affected as glaciers are retreating. During the past five decades, satellites have also noticed a decrease in the amount of spring snow that covers the Northern Hemisphere, showing that snow is in fact melting earlier. Another effect of climate change is the rise in sea levels, and during the past two decades, the global sea level rose about 8 inches. However, the levels continue to accelerate each year. With an increase of about 30% in the acidity of surface ocean water, it is critical to note that climate change is affecting marine life. Modifying the environment in order to fit the needs of society has caused mass extinction, biodiversity loss and ecological collapse.

Hence, delegations must work together on bringing forth solutions to help reduce and terminate both the causes and long term effects of climate change.

Issue 2: Addressing Russia’s agenda to hand control over Arctic trade routes to a state-run nuclear group.

The Arctic Northern Sea route is a shipping route that lies within Russia’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ). It runs from the Barents Sea, near Russia’s border with Norway, to the Bering Strait between Siberia and Alaska. Russian permission needs to be granted to ships sailing through the NSR. Russia benefits economically by acquiring transit fees and providing icebreakers to ease transportation routes. In the past decade, the area used to be void of ice for only two months per year, however, stimulating climate change is melting northern sea ice caps faster than ever before causing the ice sheets to melt by 13% according to NASA. This dramatic ecological change projects remarkable shifts in trade flow between Asia and Europe, giving Russia huge economic advantages by granting the Northern Sea Routes strategic superiority over other routes. Russia plans on handing control over the NSR to a state-run nuclear group called Rosatom to allow year-long access for ships. It aims to become the exclusive administrator of one of the world’s fastest surfacing trade routes while upgrading its decommissioned military bases in the Arctic. Rosatom has a nuclear-powered icebreaker fleet and will be given control by the Russian parliament, over the framework, entryway, defense and shipping in the strategic area. However, Russia expects this agenda to be viable in the early 2030s.             

Delegates will travel in time, considering the effects of this drastic shift in strategic power, that will undoubtedly reshape trade flows around the globe. The question to be posed is whether this polar-power agenda is for the betterment of all or whether it is another way of pleasing Russia’s thirst for global superiority. Upon considering this vital question, delegates must construct resolutions with the aim of supporting or preventing this agenda from escalating and reaching its fullest potential. 

The Salem Courthouse

Re-prosecuting the Salem Witches.

Between February 1692 and May 1693, the notorious Salem Witch Trials began after a group of young girls in Salem Village, Massachusetts, were accused of witchcraft. An outburst of agitation took hold of colonial Massachusetts as community leaders intended to build a conservetive society heavily influenced by pure religious beliefs. Initially the accusations unfolded as the daughter and the niece of a minister of Salem Village, were reported to have uncanny raptures of fits, turbulent eruptions of screams and violent contortions. Doctors were said to have examined them and found no physical ailments and therefore diagnosed them with bewitchment; to be enchanted by witchcraft and black magic. Over the course of the next year, more than 200 people (mostly women) were diagnosed with bewitchment and accused of witchcraft after revealing similar peculiar symptoms.

As a result, a special Court of Oyer (to hear) and Terminer (to decide) was set up to prosecute these witchcraft cases. The court handed down its 

convictions and 19 people were sentenced to death by hanging, a man was crushed to death, and many more died in jail. The Salem Witch Trials go down in history as one of the deadliest witch hunts in North America. Delegates of this council will travel back in time to this dim and eerie period with the aim of critically analyzing the authenticity of these claims, ruling out any other possibilities that might give an alternative explanation to the “witches” odd behavior, thus devising logical solutions to the issue at hand.

The Supreme Court of the United States – SCOTUS

Case 1: Abortion

Despite being ruled as a constitutional right by the US Supreme Court in the 1973 Roe v. Wade case, abortion has yet again become a topic of immense legal controversy. Certain states have recently passed bills that limit or even completely outlaw the initial ruling of The Supreme Court. For example, on May 14, 2019, the state of Alabama issued the most restrictive abortion law that prohibits the procedure with very few exceptions, while numerous other states have passed “Hearbeat Bills” that illegalize abortion following the fetus’s heartbeat detection. Moreover, a controversial Texas bill will allow for not only a ban on abortions, but will also consider them as a form of homicide that can warrant for a death sentence. Meanwhile, states such as New York and Vermont have adhered to the precedent law of legal abortions and claim to continue doing so. These varying laws and decisions have stirred unrest within the public, leading to numerous protests and campaigns supporting both parties.

Case 2: Gun Control

The United States is one of only three countries in the world that have an established right to bear and keep arms,  as stated in The Constitution under The Second Amendment. The amendment, however, has been interpreted differently by each state, causing a disparity between laws and a debate over the extent and scope of the right. Furthermore, this discussion has been exemplified by the recent rise in mass shootings in the U.S, with a whopping count of 289 shootings occurring during 2019. While some argue that the shootings only confirm the importance of armed protection for civilians, others advocate the gun control movement that strives to restrict or even prohibit arms. Compromises have been proposed such as legally  increasing the age restriction to 21, or deploying more armed police in areas prone to attacks. 

Nevertheless, the cases of violence are rapidly increasing and it is the justices’ duty to combat this epidemic whilst conserving civil rights and protecting the public.

The British Parliament

Issue 1: Devising a solution to the Northern Ireland and Ireland border following Brexit.

In 1921, after 2 years of Irish movements for independence, the Republic of Ireland is created. This put a border through Ireland creating the Republic and Northern Ireland. The latter had a majority of unionists (Ulsters), therefore remained part of what was at the time, the British Empire. This border sparked major turmoil in Northern Ireland as the Irish Republican Army (IRA) seeked independence. Trade was blocked, borders became locked, and checkpoints arose all over. This further escalated tension in Northern Ireland with the IRA violently opposing the border alongside British rule. In 1993 all custom posts are removed under the EU’s Single Market comes into force. In 2006 the last British watchtower was dismantled and now there is much less tension as there is no longer a physical border in the Irish Island. However, with Brexit incoming, the United Kingdom has a difficult choice to make. The UK wants to have no ties with the EU, therefore a border must be set up in Ireland. This, in turn, would spark up the 20th century’s tensions once more. The delegations of the council must decide on the most appropriate approach to resolving this issue while avoiding sparking conflict in Ireland.

Issue 2: Addressing the challenges faced by the British National Health Services.

The National Health Service (NHS) is a medical and health service in the United Kingdom. It is funded by taxation leading to free public healthcare by the government. However, like most public services, many issues arise. The NHS is greatly underfunded and needs a new budget to meet the new demands as it is projected to be 30 million Pounds underfunded by the year 2020. There are not enough doctors and many are undertrained, especially with the ageing British population. The ageing population also leads to overcrowding in hospitals and not enough hospital beds for patients to stay at since the older people will require more attention. The paperwork load is too much for the nurses and many tend to spend most of their time filling them out rather than dealing with patients. The delegates of this council must come together to find a solution to the NHS, one that would be most beneficial in ridding the United Kingdom of the burden imposed by the service’s shortcomings, delegates working to provide innovative means by which the issue is to be dealt with.