Dr. Sergei Kambalov Lectures at the Pawling Library

By Donald Partelow
Dr. Sergei Kambalov, a former Executive Coordinator of the United Nations Global Alliance for Information and Communication Technologies and Development, appeared at the Pawling Library for his lecture Russia: Adversary or Partner to the US on Tuesday, December 18. His presentation was a condensed version of a course he teaches at UCONN University. Much of the information he shared was of his own personal opinion and views.  Dr. Kambalov, who grew up in Siberia, interjected a bit of humor here and there between serious conversation, and jokingly spoke of Siberian winter, “When they say it’s cold outside, it’s cold outside.” In 2010 Dr. Kambalov retired after serving in the UN for 21 years and now lives happily in a secluded wooded area in Connecticut, that he calls the middle of nowhere, which many also found amusing…coming from a person who once lived in Siberia. As for international politics, he said, “Nothing is purely black or purely white. Everything is a shade of gray.” Dr. Kambalov spoke about possible Russian interference in the United States elections. “One problem is, was there collision by the Trump campaign and government with any foreign government? If there was, this is very serious.”  He asked, “Was there hacking into the United States political process, social media by outsiders?” Dr. Kambalov was certain there was by not only some Russian hackers but Chinese, North Koreans and from other countries. “Everybody does all the time,” he said. “The big question here is,” Dr. Kambalov said, “was this hacking done by the Russian government or was it Russian individuals who may have used Facebook, Twitter and so on to spread fake news or whatever it was. Do we know the answer? I don’t.” Nearing 8:30 in the evening, Dr. Sergei Kambalov concluded his lecture and received much applause. He had so much information to share but there was simply not enough time. A member from the audience turned to ask, “Can you arrange that he comes back two or three times?” Dr. Kambalov responded with a smile, “I’m available.” This presentation was made possible by the United Nations Association of Connecticut.