The Foreign Service Journal, October 2023

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | OCTOBER 2023 9 Shawn Dorman is the editor of The Foreign Service Journal. LETTER FROM THE EDITOR Welcome to the second half of our two-month focus on Foreign Service families. Last month, we looked at FS family issues related to work. This month, we put the spotlight on the kids and the home (abroad) front. FS kids, also known as third culture kids (TCKs), have a global childhood and get to—have to—transition from country to country as their parents serve in embassies, consulates, and USAID missions worldwide. Former FSO Clayton Bond kicks off the Focus with his story of becoming an adoptive parent, including lessons learned, in “Our Foreign Service Adoption Journey.” FSO Lia Miller explores “Cultural Identity Formation in Third Culture Kids,” offering ideas and resources to help families embrace their global lives while holding on to their American identities. FS parent and AFSA Retiree VP John Naland lays out “Resources for Raising Foreign Service Kids.” FS college student Aidan Gorman tells us how he came to establish and run a pro-bono human rights research group staffed by students around the world. Finally, a group of retiree TCKs who all attended grammar school together in Egypt tell us how they reconnected decades after that formative experience in “TCKs: Enduring Effects of Formative Years in Cairo.” In the cover story, “Crisis at the Russian White House, 1993,” veteran diplomat Louis Sell brings us a riveting personal account of the constitutional crisis and “October Coup” in Moscow 30 years ago this month. In the Speaking Out, FSO and president of the employee organization Americans by Choice, Nikolina Kulidzan, writes on how she found her way to a satisfactory reaction when asked where she’s from in “Go Ahead, Ask About My Accent.” This month’s Feature, “Doggedly” by Office Management Specialist Jean A. Monfort, is a (somewhat) fictional account of arranging pet travel that captures the sometimes-surreal nature of this daunting task. In FS Heritage, retired diplomat and frequent contributor Luciano Mangiafico tells the tale of “U.S. Consul Thayer’s Beethoven.” The Local Lens from FS family member Susan Jorgensen is a striking image from Vilnius, illustrating solidarity with Ukraine. In his President’s Views column, “The Broken Nominations Process,” Tom Yazdgerdi spells out problems with the nomination, confirmation, and attestation process, and he makes the case for all parties involved to do their part to improve it. I sign off here with a pitch to Foreign Service AFSA members to participate in the FSJ’s Centennial Writing Competition. The topic: Looking ahead to the next century, describe the ideal Foreign Service—as an institution and a profession. Cash prizes for the top three essays. Submit your 800- to 1,000-word essay to by Dec. 15. Be well, and be in touch. n FS Families … at Home BY SHAWN DORMAN