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Estonian minister of defense visits Augustana

Pevkur stands for a photo with students.
Pevkur stands for a photo with students.

Estonia’s minister of defense spoke to a class of political science students at Augustana College in Rock Island on Tuesday.

Hanno Pevkur discussed Russia, Ukraine, NATO and the upcoming presidential election during his visit. He emphasized the need for U.S. support in Ukraine.

"At the end of the day, the goal of Russia is not to take the territory of Ukraine," he said to the class. "At the end of the day, they want to weaken the west, the collective west, they want to show that we are not functioning, that NATO is not functioning."

Kenaya Allen is a senior studying political science and asian studies at Augustana. She's working towards a career in diplomacy and says the discussion gave her a glimpse into what her future holds.

Kenaya Allen is a senior at Augustana College.
Kenaya Allen is a senior at Augustana College.

"Very exciting, like the nerves were very high," she said. "I had a thousand questions really running through my head as he was introducing new topics, I was like, I could ask him this or wait, I could ask him this!"

Estonia has ties to the Quad Cities area already. Lewis Machine and Tool Defense in Eldridge previously produced over 16,000 rifles for the Estonian military.

Rachel graduated from Michigan State University's J-School and has a background in broadcast and environmental journalism. Before WVIK, she worked for WKAR Public Media, Great Lakes Now, and more. In her free time, she likes to cook, hike, and hang out with her cat.