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American University Professor Robert Pastor
A group supporting North American integration is preparing to hold its annual “North American Model Parliament” for students from the United States, Canada and Mexico.
The North American Forum on Integration, or NAFI, is scheduled to hold “Triumvirate,” in Washington, D.C., May 20–25.
NAFI, according to the group’s website, is as a non-profit organization based in Montreal, dedicated to “address the issues raised by North American integration as well as identify new ideas and strategies to reinforce the North American region.”
The group’s support of North American integration is documented by an objective listed to “identify the elements of the North American agenda which would allow the consolidation and reinforcement of the North American region.”
Qualifying students are undergraduates or graduate students who have “an interest in North American integration” and are bilingual among English, French and Spanish.
Students will pay $845 in fees to attend if registered after Dec. 16, 2006.
Rotated each year between the three countries, NAFI bills the mock parliament as “Triumvirate – the only North American model parliament.”
The participating students get to role play as parliamentary legislators, newspaper and television journalists.
A variety of issues pertinent to the formation and operation of a North American Community are debated by the mock parliament, including expanding immigration, stimulating investment in Mexico and revising NAFTA to move in the direction of becoming a regional government.
This year’s Triumvirate themes are listed as the creations of a customs union, water management, human trafficking and telecommunications in North America.
Last year’s Triumvirate 2006 was held in the Mexican Senate.
Triumvirate 2005, the first NAFI mock North American Parliament, was held in Ottawa, Canada.
As WND reported, Raymond Chretien, the president of the Triumvirate and the former Canadian ambassador to both Mexico and the U.S., was quoted as claiming the exercise was intended to be more than academic.
“The creation of a North American parliament, such as the one being simulated by these young people, should be considered,” he told WND.
On the NAFI board of director are M. Stephen Blank, Ph.D., director of the North American Center for Transborder Studies at Arizona State University and Robert A. Pastor, Ph.D., director of the Center for North American Studies at American University.
Stephan Blank is the driving force behind the North America Works conference.
North America Works II, held in Kansas City, Mo, Dec. 1-2, 2006, was organized by the David Rockefeller-created Council of the Americas to discuss “North American Competitiveness and the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP).”
A summer institute brochure on the website of the Center for North American Studies includes a photograph of Pastor and the students posed before a lawn marker with the words “The American University” inscribed in the stone.
Above the stone marker, the students held up a printed sign that said “North,” such that the inscription read “The North American University.”
The “North” American University
As WND reported, Pastor’s 2001 book, Toward a North American Community, argued North American integration should advance through development of a “North American consciousness” by creating various institutions which include a North American Customs Union and a North American Development Fund for the economic advance of Mexico.
Pastor also was vice chairman of the May 2005 Council on Foreign Relations task force report, Building a North American Community, that presents itself as a blueprint for using bureaucratic action though trilateral “working groups” constituted within the executive branches of the U.S., Mexico, and Canada to advance the North American integration agenda.
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