Letter from the Secretary General

Dear Delegates,

It is my honour and pleasure to welcome you to the 22nd session of the Cathedral Model United Nations. What started out as an initiative in a classroom years ago, to give students a platform to voice their views, has now evolved into a nationwide conference. With great power comes great responsibility. CMUN gives us the opportunity to shape young minds and this year we aspire to do just that.

In an increasingly globalized world, we seem to have lost our humanity. Today, we view the world issues from an unnecessarily objective standpoint. While the need for objectivity is undisputed, it is not synonymous with a lack of sensitivity. This year at CMUN through our dynamic blend of committees we hope to re-sensitize you to the problems of today.

While global tensions are at an all-time high, the relevance of the United Nations seems to be steadily declining. Be it due to monopolistic tendencies of the world powers or the simple lack of effective cooperation by the international community, the United Nations appears to be heading towards its inevitable demise. As future leaders and global citizens, it is our duty to preserve the relevance of the United Nations. It is imperative that we all recognize that a world without The United Nations is no less susceptible to war than it was in 1939. The sooner we accept this, the faster we can attempt to resolve it. In an attempt to foster such a dialogue, and with an earnest intent of raising awareness, this year CMUN is adopting a solution oriented approach for all of its committees. While we do promise the same adrenaline of the HSC and the fast pace of our constant crisis committees we also ensure comprehensive and constructive debate. All Committees should strive to reach solutions that we can pride ourselves in, solutions that not only fulfil the resolution requirements in the study guides but also leave every delegate with a sense of accomplishment and purpose. Our aim is to help our generation break out of the utopian daydream that we are all trapped in, and that initiative starts here. It starts with you, it starts with me, it starts with us.

With our dynamic and highly experienced Secretariat, we hope to give you the best possible CMUN experience. I can safely say that we are looking forward to three days of stimulating debate as much as you are. Our Directors and Moderators alike have spent time to carefully pick topics which are both relevant and interesting. I encourage you, in the most positive sense possible, to exploit this conference. Use it to make yourself more aware of what is happening around you. Use it to further your sensitivity toward world issues. Use it as a platform to voice realistic and original solutions. Use it as a stepping stone to shaping our future.

This is my fifth year at CMUN and second as a member of the Secretariat. While being a part of the dais has its charm, nothing parallels the feelings associated with being a delegate. The nervousness while giving your first speech, the thrill of meeting new people while lobbying, the anxiety of not knowing if a resolution will pass or not – all these add up to an exciting experience at CMUN. Undoubtedly, I look back with fond memories of being a delegate in many MUNs but I am exhilarated to have the privilege to lead CMUN this year and I assure you that the Secretariat will do its best to give each delegate an enriching and memorable experience.

I hope all of you leave CMUN with memories that will last you a life time but more importantly I hope that you gain realizations that will change your outlook to the world. I look forward to seeing you all in August. Until then, as always, if you have any queries about the MUN please feel free to contact me at – secgen.cmun@cajcs.in.

Yours Truly,
Isha Bhatnagar,
Secretary General,
Cathedral Model United Nations 2018.

 

Letter from the Deputy Secretary General

Dear Delegates,

It is with immense pleasure that I invite you to the 22nd Annual Cathedral Model United Nations! Every year, this conference attempts to gear young minds for change – to change our country, the world and mankind as we know it.  Our school thus gives youngsters the opportunity to collaborate, voice their opinions and take an active part in this exceedingly dynamic society.

History shows us that conflict cannot be avoided under any circumstance, it is that deeply knit into society. Not so long ago, one man caused the most devastating war this world has ever seen; a dastardly terror attack in the United States translated into a relentless nearly two decades long conflict in the Middle East; a small South American island nation was scapegoated so the world’s two biggest superpowers could flex their nuclear arsenal; and a concrete wall divided a city in the unceasing battle between communism and capitalism. The same thing followed all these conflicts – a manifold increase poverty, a multiplication in unemployment and crime, a sharp rise in corruption, and with that, human suffering reached an unprecedented peak.

In this technological era, our views are distorted and our opinions unconsciously influenced by external sources – governments, corporations, and the media – whose survival depends solely upon the information they manufacture for us to believe. Awareness, adaptation, and accord are key to human progress, devoid of which orthodoxy and stagnancy will surely continue to plague humanity. The only thing worse than a conflicted society is a static society – conflict inevitably ushers in change, while stagnancy obstructs its path.

No matter what problems arise, what conflicts we face, how many lives are lost and, and how much suffering humanity is faced with, one beautiful thing has sustained us throughout – hope. Our progress can by no means be undermined – the world has marched forward in leaps and bounds in the past century. Where earlier a heart attack meant death, today a heart transplant is carried out with ease. Where earlier African Americans were not given a single job, today people yearn for the return of an African American President. Where earlier a single phone call took an hour to get through an operator, today we video call from a plane 30000 feet above ground. Today, nearly 5 billion people reside in nations whose GDPs have increased fivefold in the past 50 years, and whose average incomes have doubled. Today, an African lives 34 years longer and consumes 300 calories more in a day. Progress is inevitable and indisputable, and this very fact should refuel the hope that our tomorrow will be brighter.

The past cannot be changed, but the future is still in our power. William Ernest Henley wrote, “I am the master of my fate.” This line encapsulates the spirit with which you, the delegates, should address the issues at hand. Keep in mind that anything can be achieved – if you have the dedication and cooperation needed, the sky is the limit. You can analyze and interpret global issues, you can balance personal agenda with diplomacy, unity, and a view of the bigger picture, and you can shape our tomorrow. It is this very spirit that is truly an embodiment of Model UN.

This year at CMUN, you, as delegates, will be dealing with a wide variety of topics, ranging from constant crises and historically significant wars to the most basic but most important issues, which threaten our very existence and lifestyle as we know it. This year we have three specialized committees – Bush’s War Cabinet (2001), the Nazi High Command, and our CMUN trademark, the Historic Security Council. All discuss historically pertinent, unorthodox, and highly challenging topics that will test diplomacy with quick thinking through crises. Our regional bodies comprise United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, a present day United Nations War Crimes Commission and the International Trade Conclave, all debating topics in need for feasible and active solutions. The two General Assemblies are the Disarmament and International Security Committee, discussing the various facets of espionage, and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. Finally, we also have the Press Corps, another CMUN mainstay. The Press Corps balances both journalistic as well as debating skills, and provides a unique and interesting approach to global affairs.

The CMUN secretariat consists of highly dedicated, talented and experienced members, and directors who have researched and prepared for all the topics extensively, spending months preparing for the committee. Remember, a Model UN tends to disintegrate into trivial issues, as we lose track of what really matters. Simply writing a ‘radical communiqué’ or becoming the leader of your bloc is by no means as important as the opportunity to expand your knowledge, to meet and discuss matters with people from India and abroad, to hone your confidence and speaking skills and to actually attempt to make a difference and change. Keeping this in mind, I urge each and every one of you to make full use of what a Model UN can offer, and work to the best of your ability to truly realize the potential you surely have stored within you.

This CMUN will be my fourth – and second as a member of the Secretariat. Model UN has helped me greatly in developing my personality and ability to interact with people, and I sincerely wish you leave CMUN with an addition of some value to your personality and understanding of global issues and affairs. I have always found a Model UN to be memorable, exciting and demanding, and I hope CMUN fulfills all your expectations. Remember – diplomacy and cooperation are the hallmark of a successful committee. Like Voltaire said, “I disapprove of what you say, but I shall defend to death your right to say it.” Only if all delegates work together despite their differences can this world move forward.

As always, if you have any questions before the conference, please do not hesitate to reach out to me at depsecgen.cmun@cajcs.in or to your committee director.

Until August,
Aman Saraf,
Director,
Bush’s War Cabinet, 2001,
Deputy Secretary-General,
Cathedral Model United Nations 2018.