the other day i had a chance to attend an event at the UK Foreign Office with British Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt as a guest speaker. They have such an amazing conference hall. Before the event started my head was most of the time straight up wondering about the decorations on the ceilings. Huhh..
Minister gave an interesting speech on topical events in the foreign policy, international affairs, answered to questions and tried to justify British position and decisions in relation to Afghanistan, Iran, Middle East etc.
However, what did strike me most was the audience. Mostly young men in their 20s, with obvious upper-middle class background, 99.8% white (there was one guy who seemed to be mixed a bit), with the correct haircut, handkerchief in the external pocket of their tailored suits, polished shoes and aristocratic manners. Seemed like foreign policy is privatized by a certain class, narrow circle of elite because of its power and prestige. After this it feels like the freedom to achieve because of one’s merits is a bit an illusion. If one probably is not rich enough to go to the right boarding schools, mingle in the right social networks, attend the right universities, this path to foreign policy might be closed. I hope i am wrong, but for this multicultural London audience was way too white and elitist.