Great Decisions Ends Its Year in Iran

Sandy Epstein

April marks this year’s final month of meetings for SaddleBrooke Great Decisions. Our last meeting was on April 3. George Kramer began our exploration of “Iran at a Crossroads.” The discussion focused on, among other things, U.S. policy toward Iran, instability in the Arab world, Iran’s foreign policy, and the rise of youth culture.

The Foreign Policy Association is calling all of the videos produced to accompany the 2023 topics “Master Classes.” Each of the videos is uploaded at, the SaddleBrooke Great Decisions website. There may also be additional references, as well as materials provided by some of our presenters.

Our first meeting in March was a discussion of war crimes. We traced both the success and failure of the many approaches to dealing with war crimes and discussed implications for Ukraine. Sherry Kaplan introduced the topic. Also in March, Sam Horowitz led us in a discussion of political trends in Latin America: their left-leaning governments and the reasons for their popularity.

In addition to Sam and Sherry, a huge thank you goes out to all of this year’s presenters: Mary Jo Swartzberg, Harry Sloan, Lockwood Carlson, John Sommers, Boyd Bosma, and George Kramer. Each of these people brought their perspective on the topic and helped enhance our understanding of the issue. They each took questions after their talk and rotated between discussion groups to offer further insights.

Great Decisions will begin again in January 2024. Members should watch their emails for an announcement in December. At that time, you will be given an opportunity to reserve a Briefing Book, to be paid for upon delivery, sometime before our first meeting. The Briefing Book is our “textbook” for each meeting’s agenda.

For new and old members alike, the SaddleBrooke Chapter is always looking for more participation. If you have expertise or curiosity about one of next year’s topics, you may want to be one of our presenters. Or you can help by being a group moderator. Watch for the Foreign Policy Association list of 2024 issues and volunteer to take an active part in our meeting calendar.

Finally, it must be said that the success of the 2023 Great Decisions is due in large part to the dedication of all our board members: Sherry Kaplan, Sandy Epstein, Karen Carlberg, Bob Hoff, Mel Durschlag, Boyd Bosma, Rhoda Kaplan, Sam Horowitz, and Loraine Stillman. Thanks for all your hard work!

If you have any questions or need further information about SaddleBrooke Great Decisions, please call Sherry Kaplan at 847-528-1968, email Sandy Epstein at [email protected], or check out our website.