Today was the first day of actual debating. There were four rounds, and the results are listed on the right (3 means first place, 0 means last). An average of two points per round ensures breaking to the quarterfinals, probably less.
In the first round we were assigned as first opposition on the motion that "This house will take lifestyle choices into account in the allocation of scarce medical resources." We were up against to EFL (English First Language) teams, one of them quite good, but we still got first place due to our brilliant analysis, and due to fundamental errors on the part of the second government team.
In the second round we were up against two outstanding EFL teams, that routinely break and participate in finals (Cambridge B and Middle Temple) and a very good ESL (English Second Language) team -- Berlin A. We were assigned the worst position in debating -- first proposition and the motion was "This house believes that the state should prohibit all items of clothing that cover the face". This case is clearly opposition-skewed, so we had a really tough job in front of us. Unsurprisingly, we came fourth, however the judge did comment that this was a very good debate and we have done our job very well. We got fourth simply because the other teams were even better.
In the next round we were again against more average teams, and we were assigned (again) to first opposition. The motion was "This house believes that democracy is a necessary condition for economic growth and stability". This was a new type of debate: An analysis debate. We should debate the question of whether or not the motion is true. Our main example was China and have shown that the Government have chosen the wrong criteria and that China does in fact have economic growth and stability. Furthermore, we have shown that economic growth and stability can in principle be attained in non-democratic regimes, even though the population might not be as happy. We won that debate as well, after a long adjudication.
At this point we had 6 points out of a possible 9 and were the best Israeli team in the competition. No other Israeli team had 6 or more points, including the EFL speakers from RRIS. We knew the next debate was going to be tough. However, we were disappointed to learn that we were assigned (again) to first proposition (which means the tab sucks) and furthermore had to debate again against two EFL teams and one German team. To make matters worse, this time the motion required knowledge we don't really have, and was again opposition-skewed. The motion was "This house believes that Turkey should invade Northern Iraq to fight Kurdish terrorist organizations". We thought we were about to lose again. Luckily Mark had little information about the subject matter and I managed to build the logic of the case in the sense of what we have to prove in order to make this point. Our actual substantive matter was very weak, but we did make the correct analysis of the issue. It turned out this was enough to bring us above the second government team from Germany and put us in third place.
Thus, after four debates we are now at seven points. If we get six points in the three debates tomorrow we will probably break to the quarterfinals. In any case, expect an update tomorrow night. Now, I'm off to either a "relax party" or the pre-council, where issues regarding this competition are being decided.