Model United Nations at UCLA

Since 1950

Model United Nations at UCLA provides a forum for discussion of international relations and events through dynamic and academically stimulating simulation of the United Nations. We host two major Model UN conferences annually, and provide opportunities for members to travel nationally and internationally to compete in collegiate MUN conferences. MUN at UCLA holds weekly general meetings and frequent social events featuring guest speakers, conference and travel training, discussion of international events, and more.

Participation in Model UN activities promotes desirable and marketable traits such as public and impromptu speaking, networking, international engagement, and creative problem solving.

BruinMUN, our fall quarter high school conference, brings approximately 1000 high school students to UCLA for a weekend of debate, healthy competition, and fun. The conference, entering its 21st year, exposes high school students to UCLA and provides leadership experience for our staffers.

LAMUN, our spring quarter college conference, has an eight year history. Several hundred participants from dozens of domestic and international colleges and universities converge in Los Angeles annually to simulate UN style debate in a variety of unique, “crisis based” committees.

Our travel team is open to all and sends delegations to several conferences annually. Unlike many other MUN programs, members can try out for each conference.

Our primary goal is to continue growing and improving our conferences, travel team, and events. We strive to provide a consistently high quality experience at no cost to our members.

JCC: War of the Pacific - Chile

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JCC: War of the Pacific - Chile

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Coordinating Crisis Director: Axel Sarkissian

Chair: Alex Bednar

Crisis Director: Adarsh Balaji

E-mail: chile@bruinmun.org

Committee Description:

The year is 1879, and the government of Chile is preparing for war. For years, Chilean guano harvesters have worked dutifully and peacefully on Bolivian lands in the Atacama desert. But now Bolivia has the gall to break the Treaty our nations agreed to. After trying to find a peaceful solution, the only remaining option is to take the land by force. Chile is prepared for this action. Unfortunately, due to a secret treaty between Bolivia and its neighbor Peru, this will mean taking on the combined forces of both states. Even though we are one nation taking on the forces of two, we are more than ready for such a task.

    This committee will bring war to the central Pacific Coast of South America. The navies of Peru and Chile will fight off the coast of the Atacama Desert, and Chilean armies will engage with the forces of both the Bolivian and Peruvian militaries. This was a war fought over more than just guano reserves: it was a conflict over the control of the Pacific coast of South America. The War of the Pacific had an incredible influence over the future of the South American continent, and to this very day the nations involved are still in dispute of some of its results. The committee will be full of complex battle strategy, intriguing debate on domestic interests, and debates on how the nations can enter the world stage in the future. So come join the Chilean cause and stop the armies of Peru and Bolivia from dictating our future!

Letter from the Coordinating Crisis Director

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to LAMUN 2017. My name is Axel Sarkissian, and I will be the coordinating crisis director for the War of the Pacific. I study Political Science with minors in Public Affairs and Urban & Regional Planning, and compete regularly with the University’s intercollegiate Model UN team. I look forward to a weekend of excellent debate and intriguing crisis notes.  

The War of the Pacific was a pivotal moment in South American history. The JCC will simulate the War from the perspective of the main actors in the conflict. We hope to faithfully represent the fascinating and unique character of each of the three countries involved and of the war itself.

It is important to note that, during the time period, Latin America was radically different when compared to Europe or the United States. While the countries in question had well developed militaries (and in some cases access to cutting-edge technology), their economies and institutions had not progressed at the same speed. These committees will not be just about the war; delegates will also have to grapple with domestic issues, many of which will be exacerbated by the ongoing conflict.                     

You should be broadly familiar with the history that lead to the conflict and have an understanding of other issues which a country might face when it enters into a war (food shortages, disruption of government services, and so on). I would encourage you to understand your country’s society and the basics of its national history.

It is important to note that the cabinets you will form a part of did not exist at the time, and that a grouping of these characters would be highly unusual. Thus, there will be significant room for creativity in these committees, which we encourage.

Please do not hesitate to email your chair, crisis director, or myself with any questions.

Regards,
Axel Sarkissian
Coordinating Crisis Director, War of the Pacific

Letter from the Chair

Bienvenidos delegates,

Chile must be strong right now. As your President, I will try to lead you through these tumultuous times. But I can only do so much, and I rely on all of you to help our great nation. We  are fighting for our people’s right to do business on the South American continent without undue burden from our neighbors. Peru has teamed up with their neighbor, Bolivia, and Chile has to battle the combined forces of both nations. But Chile is prepared for this, and Chile will prevail!

Your President,

Aníbal Pinto

To break character, the War of Pacific was an event that had ripple effects all across the continent of South America and the world. Fierce naval battles played out off the Pacific coast of South America while land campaigns trudged across the Atacama Desert. This battle was fought in one of the dryest and hottest areas on the planet, and the results changed the map of South America forever. To this day, questions remain on the validity of the agreed upon borders at the end of the war. I am looking forward to a fascinating, unique, and fast paced committee which I believe will be one to remember.

So now for a little about your Chair. My name is Alex Bednar, and I am a third year Geography and Environmental Studies major here at UCLA. When not researching nineteenth century South American wars, I am usually reading a good book or watching Youtube analysis of the latest Marvel movie trailer. I was born in Wisconsin, and left one part of the Midwest for another when in fifth grade I  moved to Ohio. For college, I desired to leave the cold and chaotic climates I had known my whole life for the beautiful weather of Southern California. I have done Model United Nations in some form since sixth grade, and I have done LAMUN every year of my college career. Feel free to contact me with any questions about the committee!

I look forward to some great debate and some awesome crisis arcs, and I can’t wait for committee! ¡Viva Chile!

Sincerely,
Alex Bednar
Chair
JCC War of the Pacific - Chile


Letter from the Crisis Director

Greetings Delegates,

My name is Adarsh Balaji and I will be serving as your Crisis Director for the Chilean side of this year’s LAMUN JCC – War of The Pacific. I am a sophomore pursuing a biochemistry major, and I aspire to go to graduate school to gain a PhD. Model United Nations has been a part of my life since my sixth grade, and I have had the pleasure of extending my experience with MUN at UCLA. I’m a part of UCLA’s MUN Travel Team also, so I hope to run into all of you in the future at the various conferences that UCLA attends.

Historically, Bolivia and Chile have had many disagreements over the exact demarcation of their territories, both land and coastal. The situation only escalated further when Bolivia unjustly instituted taxes on minerals that were mined in regions belonging to Peru and Bolivia. Chilean mining companies were not prepared to listen to these outrageous demands and hence resisted the levying of these taxes. This brought about a fierce argument between the two nations, resulting in declarations of war from both sides – leading us to the present day.

As a cabinet committee, the delegates in this room are influential figures in the political and military landscape of Chile. Together, you will seek a method in which this problem will be brought to rest - either through militaristic or diplomatic means. The nation will require your utmost dedication and commitment to see through the following years without many losses.

We shall hopefully discuss all this in our committee to have a very fruitful and successful debate. The fate of Chile lies in your hands, delegates. Uphold the principles upon which it was found, and steer your nation towards glory and success!

Regards,

Adarsh Balaji
Crisis Director
JCC War of the Pacific - Chile

 

 

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