On March 27, Peruvian Minister of Defense Alberto Otarola Penaranda visited NDU and CHDS, as part of an official visit to the United States, which will include a meeting with Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta. Minister Otarola was greeted by CHDS Director Dr. Richard Downie and RADM Douglas McAneny, USN, Commandant of the National War College. Minister Otarola then joined Dr. Downie and a number of representatives from Peru, the US military, the CHDS faculty, and security-related institutions from around Washington, DC, for a roundtable discussion on “Peruvian Defense and Security Strategy.” During his visit to the United States, Minister Otarola repeatedly emphasized his desire for a peaceful Peru.
The roundtable was followed by a visit to a class of students attending the Strategy and Defense Policy course at CHDS, where he unveiled a portrait of Tupac Amaru II, a gift to CHDS. Tupac Amaru II was a leader of an indigenous uprising in 1780 against the Spanish in Peru and became a symbol of the Peruvian struggle for independence.
Minister Otarola has been Peru’s Minister of Defense since December 11, 2011, before which he held the post of Deputy Minister of Internal Order in the Ministry of the Interior.