Is túisce denoch ná sceal
(A drink precedes a story)
During the initiation of the year of the rooster, Team LSE crossed St George’s Channel to partake in the 3rd Edition of Ireland Model United Nations (ÉireMUN), hosted by the International Relations Society of University College Cork. Set in the “rebel city” of Cork, renowned for its Georgian architecture, vibrant art galleries, and Jewish literary community, we compressed numerous unforgettable experiences into four short but intense days of committee sessions, drinking, and singing in the rain. In a combined effort, 15 delegates epitomized leadership, negotiation, and collaboration, collectively winning “Best Delegation”.
But limiting this past weekend to awards alone would be reductionist; for I will most fondly remember our actions outside committee. Ranging from invigorating a pub overcrowded with minors, eating Chinese takeaway with teaspoons, sharing intimate secrets or regurgitating into the River Lee, we made the most out of our short stay. In this context, despite small committee sizes, continuous precipitation, and obstinate organizational ambiguities, ÉireMUN 2017 was more than just an archetypical MUN conference. Rather, the entire weekend had an immeasurable and pleasant ring, principally due to the harmonious and truly pleasant personalities within our delegation.
In the European Council, Andreas Sorger, colloquially known as the long lost son of the land of pumpkin seed oil, adroitly negotiated between diverging western and eastern European nations to establish unanimous consent on the highly controversial and fragmented Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). The alpine republic’s delegate demonstrated wit, cooperation and direction - talents largely unknown to Austrian statesmen. Jan-Paul Sandmann, representing Lithuania in his first MUN conference, was voted the “Best Looking” and “Most Quotable” delegate in the council and adeptly negotiated to receive environmental and economic allowances for eastern nations, in an attempt to make the Baltic Sea “great again”. Andreas and myself were truly awestruck by his skilful demeanour, passionate speeches and ease in meandering through a new and unfamiliar environment. I am certain that we will hear great things from Jan-Paul in the future.
In the Security Council, Giulia Lima Bianchi overpowered illness and uncooperative P5 delegates to win “Best Delegate”, writing a comprehensive and all-embracing resolution dubbed to be “fecking bruilliant“ by the self-proclaimed EireMUN cult icon Gearóid Ó Maoldomnaigh. In the most competitive and challenging committee, her aptitude and skill shone through and brought truculent delegates together. The impeccably dressed Connor Naylor deftly represented Saudi-Arabia, negotiating the Russian Federation to U-Turn in its Syrian foreign policy. Outside of committee, Connor’s charm and appeal oscillated far beyond our small delegation, leading to copious fruitful relationships with both male and female local youth. John Gordon, delegate of Iceland in his first university level conference, adeptly contributed to debate and concurrently introduced new ideas and initiatives to the floor. One of our youngest delegates, he wasted no time in exploring Cork’s nightlife and partying longer than many senior delegates.
In the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Christie Deng faced the daunting task of representing the new American administration in an institution proclaimed to be “obsolete” by the 45th commander-in-chief. Our UNSOC president spearheaded and directed debate in both caucuses, drafting and passing a unanimously approved resolution on reforming and restructuring the western military alliance. Theodore Chan, the undisputed most likeable and good willed member of our delegation integrally shaped debate, consensus, and resolutions within the committee. If anything, his tremendous performance throughout the entire weekend should confirm that his aptitude in committee ranges far beyond the writing of position papers; a fact long and palpably known to all of us but one that he has concurrently denied. Gigi Choy, delegate of Romania, frequently challenged shared perceptions of the committee and integrally contributed to reform, agreement, and progression within the committee. An eccentric foodie and passionate preamb writer, she further strongly contributed to make our time as a delegation outside committee highly enjoyable. Yeva Agayan, Chair in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, skilfully directed delegates towards adhering to country policy and abiding to legislative prerogatives within the remits of the committee, whilst demonstrating her high tolerance of beverages at socials.
In UN Women, Jonathan Lin coalesced a concoction of Gin & Tonic's, minimal preparation, and Latino hip swings to direct and dominate committee in his habitual fashion. Living off 15-30 daily cough drops to sustain high paced and low substantive speeches, he went as far as sleeping in Western Business Attire in order to win the “Best Dressed Delegate" award. Tamanna Moushumi passionately fought for and compellingly defended women’s rights to the access to education, She was able to multitask, a talent rare amongst most delegates, contributing to debate whilst live streaming a panel discussion on human rights under sharia law. Aaron Quak, delegate of Guatemala, guided debate with his poignant speeches, valuable insights and opinions, whilst never failing to entertain by sharing amusing stories at socials. When not bragging about his burgundy suit or falling asleep on the hotel floor, Benjamin Alford chaired UN Women. Our Cornish braveheart concurrently entertained the committee with his (underappreciated) witty remarks, whilst exhibiting true savage when calling out delegates who would plagiarize speeches or represent zealot ideals in front of the entire conference at the closing ceremony.
In the Crisis Simulation of the Franco-Prussian war, Simon Pastor adeptly manoeuvred around numerous assassination attempts and skilfully reacted to dubious crisis updates, winning the “French Cabinet award”. Our youngest delegate, Simon enjoyed Irish nightlife to the fullest, and established himself as the most recognizable Team LSE delegate amongst other universities. Melvin Kan, representing the Prussian Field Marshal Helmuth von Moltke the elder, proficiently wrote directives that visibly influenced the progression of the crisis. Tasha Chia meanwhile skilfully backstabbed Melvin in order to claim a personal battle between both delegates. Both Melvin and Tasha, also commendably visited and discovered Cork’s cultural habitat in the hours outside of committee.
All in all, I personally thoroughly relished ÉireMUN and am certain that the past weekend’s experiences will rest fondly in my mind. As Head Delegate, I want to thank every member of our delegation for putting up with me, and apologise for being pedantic at times. I can truthfully say that I enjoyed spending every second with you. The delegates make the conference, and the entire Team LSE delegation made the past days heart-warming.
We are pleased to announce our award winners:
Team LSE – Best Delegation
Stefan Bogensberger – Best Delegate in European Council (France)
Andreas Sorger – Distinguished Delegate in European Council (Austria)
Giulia Lima Bianchi – Best Delegate in Security Council (Italy)
Connor Naylor - Honourable Mention in Security Council (Saudi Arabia)
Christie Deng – Best Delegate in North Atlantic Treaty Organization (United States of America)
Jonathan Lin – Best Delegate in UN Women (Venezuela)
Simon Pastor – French Cabinet Award in Crisis
We also want to thank all our other delegates:
Jan-Paul Sandmann - Lithuania in European Council
John Gordon - Iceland In Security Council
Theodore Chan - Montenegro in North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Gigi W Choy - Romania in North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Tamanna Moushumi - Pakistan in UN Women
Aaron Quak - Guatemala in UN Women
Tasha Chia - French Cabinet (Crisis)
Melvin Kan - German Cabinet (Crisis)
We would also like to extend our gratitude to our chairs:
Yeva Agayan - North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Benjamin Alford - UN Women
Last, but not least, we would like to thank our Conference Advisor Kristina Lau.