“Global Exchange (http://www.globalexchange.org) collaborating with dozens of peace and community groups, including Mainstreet Moms (firstname.lastname@example.org, Stefanie@theMMOB.org: (415) 505-4669), Goldstar Families for Peace (http://www.democracyinaction.org) True Majority (http://www.AmericaSaysNo.org), Code Pink (http://www.codepinkalert.org), United for Peace (ttp://www.unitedforpeace.org), and Move On (http://pol.moveon.org) held demonstrations, marches and meetings over Mothers Day weekend, May 10-14 In Washington, D.C. (including a White House Vigil) and around the county protesting President Bush’s Veto of the funding bill with a time table for bringing the troops home for Iraq, demanding an end to the U.S. military presence in Iraq, and opposing militay action against Iran. For details go to: www.mandateforpeace.org, and http://www.democracyinaction.org or http://www.unitedforpeace.org.. American’s Against Escalation undertook a major new organizing initiative to end the War in Iraq – Iraq Summer – deploying 110 organizers to key Congressional districts to try to stop “the disastrous war in Iraq,” executing a national program to convince critical elements of the Republican base to stop their support for the war. For information contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. These organizations have also been engaged in a campaign for negotiations with Iran, not war. And have also been working for the impeachment of President Bush and Vice President Cheney.
Global Exchange responded to the violent clashes between Fatah and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, saying “The violence witnessed over the past two weeks are the results of months, even years, of pressure building in the Gaza Strip. We condemn the violence carried out by both Hamas and Fatah, recognizing that the U.S. and Israel bear responsibility for dictating internal Palestinian politics by using methods that aim to fuel a growing rift between Hamas and Fatah. These practices have served to jeopardize the Gazan population and move farther away from a just solution”. The organization calls for Congress to stop fueling and funding civil war in the occupied territories and find a political solution to the conflict. For more, go to: http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/track.jsp?key=367789539&url_num=6&url=http%3A%2F%2.
Concerning climate change, Global Exchange joined other organizations in the April 14th, national climate change day, calling on Congress to cut carbon 80% by 2050. Global Exchange Reality tours offer a number of Delegations to Latin, including to Oaxaca: Oct. 26 to Nov. 3, 2007, including the ceremonies of the Day of the Dead; to Nicaragua for the Fair Harvest Exchange Program, December 14; and in Mexico, to Chiapas concerning the Anniversary of NAFTA and the Zapatista Uprising, December 26 – January 04. For details contact Cristina at Global Exchange, (415)575-5523, email@example.com, http://www.globalexchange.org/tours/704.html. Global Exchange is also calling for, “Toward a Trade Policy that Works for the People: A Call for a Moratorium on Free Trade Agreements.” For more go to: http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/gx/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=599>http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/gx/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=599.
No War, No warming: a National Intervention is scheduled to take place October 21-23, in Washington, DC. “The Iraq war and the threat of climate change are the twin global threats that millions of Americans said they wanted immediate action on after the U.S. mid-term election. But as Iraq continues to devolve into violence and chaos, and as we hit another year of record warm temperatures, our legislators are failing to respond to the will of the people. We want a safe and healthy planet for years and years to come. Please join us in a series of actions in 2007 to fight climate change, not wars for oil! We need to take immediate action: To end the war in Iraq and all future oil wars; To halt the impending climate crisis; To end the US addiction to oil and other fossil fuels; To rebuild New Orleans and all impacted communities; To end racism and corporate greed; To promote green jobs in a clean energy economy.” Sponsirting organizations are: CODEPINK, Council of Canadians, Democracy Rising, Farms Not Arms, Friends of the Earth, Global Exchange, GlobalWarmingSolution.org, Green House Network, Hip Hop Caucus, Independent Progressive Politics Network, Labor/Community Strategy Center, Liberty Tree Foundation for the Democratic Revolution, Madre, Oil Change International, Organic Consumers Association, Pax Christi USA, Peace Action Progressive Democrats of America, Project South, Rainforest Action Network, Rising Tide North America, Sierra Youth Coalition, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Southern Energy Network, Student Environmental Action Coalition, Voters for Peace, West Harlem Environmental Action, and Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. For more information go to: http://www.nowarnowarming.org/.
The League of Conservation Voters is joining other groups in The Heat is on Campaign is working to get congress to take action to take real action against global warming. For more information go to: ghttp://action.lcv.org/campaign/redford_video/wsb8wxx2pxxb3wb?.
On July 15th, residents of six Mediterranean countries simultaneously jumped into their local rivers, joining its counterpart, the European bi-annual ‘Big Jump’ event, that calls on governments to clean up their local waterways. The event took place at the Jordan River, which is severely polluted and drying up, the Alexandria River (Egypt), the Emilia-Romagna Adriatic Coastline (Italy), the Tanger (Morocco), Catalonia (Spain) and the Rhône River (France), according to Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME). Stress the importance of the Jordan River, under threat from excessive water diversion and pollution, for all the peoples in the region and for all three religions, a rabbi, a priest and an imam participated in the event, alongside Jordanian, Israeli and Palestinian mayors from both sides of the Jordan Valley.
The Student Peace Action Network (SPAN) is a national, grassroots network of youth activists, young adults, high school, college and graduate students organizing for peace and justice and in opposition to war and militarism. Working to end the complex webs of corporate and military power that violate human rights, deprive people of basic needs, damage the environment and perpetuate racism and oppression, SPAN’s current campaign to “Flunk the War Machine” highlights connections between U.S. militarism abroad and in schools. It empowers youth activists to take action on issues that directly affect their lives and their peers, while advocating for peace and justice in the world. It challenges the Bush Administration’s disastrous and misguided policies of preventative military and nuclear aggression, especially as they concern our campuses by: Countering military recruiters’ increasingly aggressive and deceptive tactics to enlist students to fight in Iraq, Demanding positive alternatives to military enlistment – opportunities for youth to go to school, not war; and other alternatives to build a peaceful society, including non-military service programs; Supporting the rights & resistance of a new generation of veterans returning from war to speak out for peace; Challenging nuclear weapons and defense contractors’ ties to college campuses (including research & funding programs sponsored by these contractors); and, Promoting academic and experiential education for peace and justice, human rights and nuclear abolition. For more information contact Student Peace Action Network, (301)565-4050, ext 322, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.StudentPeaceAction.org, www.myspace.com/StudentPeaceAction, or http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2234364246.
The “march for Israeli-Palestinian peace” took place, June 5, on the 40th anniversary of the June 1967 war, in cities and towns throughout the world “in solidarity with the people of Israel and Palestine” who marched, demonstrated and organized for Israeli-Palestinian peace throughout Israel and Palestine. Main events were held in key cities such as Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Ramallah, Nablus, Gaza, Washington, New York, Chicago, Athens, Paris, Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt, London, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver, Moscow, Rome, Amman, Cairo, and Tokyo, among others for information conact: email@example.com.
Frustrated with ongoing instability in the region, the recent crisis in Gaza and lack of progress, the OneVoice Movement announced, in early August, that nearly 500,000 Palestinian and Israeli citizens have united to demand immediate, ongoing, uninterrupted negotiations until a comprehensive two-state agreement is achieved. OneVoice has committed to recruit one million signatories to join the movement by October.
On October 18, 2007, Israeli and Palestinian citizens – together with international supporters – will mobilize to call for a two-state solution and an end to the occupation and terror. OneVoice, a non-partisan mainstream nationalist movement working in Israel and Palestine for an end to the conflict, will organize separate, simultaneous public summits in Tel Aviv, Jericho and Jerusalem, with international “Echo” events in London, Washington D.C. and Ottawa. For details go to: www.onevoicemovement.org.
Israeli peace organizations including Gush Shalom (Gush Shalom, p.o.b. 3322 Tel Aviv 61033, Israel, firstname.lastname@example.org, http://zope.gush-shalom.org/home/en) and the Other Israel (The Other Israel, p.o.b. 2542, Holon 58125, Israel, ph/fax: +972-3-5565804, email@example.com, http://otherisrael.home.igc.org/, remained extremely active in working for peace and the rights of Palestinians seriously negatively affected by Israeli “security” actions. When Israel closed the crossings into Gaza, causing greatly worsened humanitarian conditions, following the Hamas takeover there, they stated, “Gush Shalom, the Israeli Peace Bloc, demands of the government to reopen immediately the border crossings to the Gaza strip, which are its vital lifeline. “It was the state of Israel which decided to keep in its hands all the keys for entry into and exit from the Gaza Strip, and deny to Gazans the right to have a direct contact with the outside world by land, sea and air. As long as this is the policy implemented by the Government of Israel, it is legally and morally obliged to keep open the border crossings, completely regardless of the identity of the government holding power in the Strip. Ehud Olmert and all his ministers, the old and the new, will bear the full responsibility for the grave humanitarian results of continuing to keep the passages closed. Those who refused to talk to the Palestinian National Unity Government, will now have to talk to two rival Palestinian government. Unlike the vain boastings of politicians and commentators who play games of “divide and rule”, this will be far more difficult and complicated, and all of us will have to endure unnecessary suffering – Israel and its citizens, as well as the Palestinians and the entire region. Three months ago, we had the chance of talking to the Palestinian National Unity Government, and through it to all the factions and parties active in the Palestinian public, on the basis of the peace initiative adopted by the Arab League. A visible advance towards peace and an end to the occupation could have strengthened those Palestinians who seek a political solution – and there are such in both Fatah and Hamas. With a visible fruit for the political road, the military wings and armed militias would have been less eager for hasty acts of force. Both the suffering of the Israelis in Sderot and the death and destruction of the internal fighting in Gaza might have been avoided. Instead, the government of Israel has engaged in open and blunt efforts to foment civil war among the Palestinians. Ministers and senior military officers repeatedly spoke of sending arms to Muhammad Dahlan and his troops, presenting them to their people as despicable collaborators. Directly, the death and destruction in Gaza over the past week are the work of Palestinian factions which acted irresponsibly and caused great damage to their own people – but the government of Israel is not without blame. Those who push their neighbors to civil war cannot avoid responsibility even when the results are not as expected.”
Dror Zeevi – Yediot Aharonot – stated on the Other Israel Billboard, July 7, “Hamas is evidently in distress and its leaders are signaling that they would be prepared for a compromise in exchange for opening crossings and transferring supplies. Sources close to Hamas insist that there is a willingness among Hamas leaders to advance a long-term ceasefire. Israel is currently enjoying clear tactical superiority and it appears that it is holding the entire deck of cards. The easy solution is to lead the area to almost total collapse, or alternately, as army officers and Knesset members have been saying recently, “to allow them to keep their heads above water.” However, it would be a mistake to boycott Hamas. The rational mode of action would be to listen to what its leadership has to say and to try and reach an agreement with them (http://www.kibush.co.il/show_file.asp?num=21020).
During the week of June 9th, marking the 40th anniversary of the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories, the Israeli peace groups joined in a series of demonstrations calling for the government to quickly move toward a peace settlement that would justly end the occupation.
Occupation Magazine continues to report details and impacts of the occupation at: http://www.kibush.co.il/datapage.asp?lang=1%20§ion=1. In late March, Bil`in Village in the West Bank hosted a conference for all regions of the West Bank on nonviolent resistance, convened by the People`s Committee to Resist the Wall, and national and Islamic resistance movements (for more go to: http://www.kibush.co.il/show_file.asp?num=18979). On July 27, “Around 5:30pm international Human Rights Workers and member of the Christian Peace-Making Team joined a Palestinian man on the land he owned to help him clean it from debris put there by settler vandals and protect him and his livestock while they feed. Settlers have erected a tent on his land and called it a synagogue seven years ago. This severely handicapped man and his family are normally told to leave the land they own when they try to farm it, or when they let their goats eat from it. The international volunteers showed up to help the family farm their land under the repression they face from soldiers and settlers. We started by removing wood that vandals had nailed to his trees. Settlers with guns saw us do this and called the military. When the military came they told us to stop and the land owner was told he had to prove the land was his. The owner produced Israeli court papers, which proved that the land was indisputably his. The officer reluctantly looked over the papers. However even then we were not allowed to remove the wood because we were told it would look like we were trying to steal it. We began then to cut and collect the grass to take to the goats so they could eat. The police soon showed up, followed later by border police. They kept a heavy presence near us but did nothing to stop the harassment of the settlers. This harassment of course escalated, starting with shouted insults. When international volunteers brought this to the attention of the police, they were told that unless this was caught on film there was nothing they could do. Even with this warning, the police still did nothing to deescalate the harassment from the settlers. The family then let their goats out to eat the grass that grows on the land they own and this proved to be the last straw for the settlers. An old, well dressed settler exited his settlement using a stick as a walking aid, and giving the impression of frailty asked one of the volunteers where they were from in an aggressive manor and suddenly without provocation attacked two international human rights workers with what proved to be a spiked stick. He first hit one female volunteer across the head, moving on to strike multiple blows to another this time male observer. His arm was left bleeding heavily, leaving blood on both he and the settler. The police had no choice, in the face of such obvious lawless aggression and knowing that of course this time it would be filmed, but to intervene. They ran up the stairs and prevented the old man from returning to his settlement, and arrested him. The two HRWs and the man who filmed them were taken to the police station, and the old man was arrested. The Palestinians and HRWs were told that the area had to be cleared because the situation was “heated”. The Palestinians and volunteers therefore left the land of the family only to watch Israeli settlers exit the settlement, walk freely through land and socialize with the military and police. After a few minutes spending at the police station the attacking settler was eventually released by the police with the explanation that they are not going to arrest Israelis during Shabbat” (http://www.palsolidarity.org/main/2007/07/28/tel-rumeida-violent-settler-attacks-human-rights-workers/).
At Bilin, on July 28, it was reported (http://www.palsolidarity.org/main/2007/07/27/bilin-soldiers-show-no-restraint-towards-peaceful-demonstrators/), “Approximately 300 international, Palestinian and Israeli non-violent demonstrators came together for the 129th Bilin demonstration against the illegal Apartheid wall. The demonstrators came from all backgrounds and included children as young as five through to women, men and elderly internationals, Israelis and Palestinians. The demonstration took a different route than usual and entered the olive groves from the far left hand side through a small road close to the wall. Upon entering the Olive groves, the soldiers almost immediately began firing tear gas canisters and sound grenades at the demonstrators who were peacefully walking towards the Apartheid wall. Despite demonstrators being hundreds of meters away from the Wall and not posing any threat to the soldiers or the Wall itself the soldiers used severe aggression without just cause. Demonstrators made significant attempts to avoid the tear gas however due to the direction of the wind, many of the demonstrators were severely affected by the gas, including one international male who required attention by the Palestinian Red Crescent. Despite initial attempts by the soldiers to disperse the demonstrators, the non-violent activists persevered in getting their message across that the Apartheid wall must fall and that the people of Bilin and the internationals say No to the Occupation….”
On August 17, Gush Shalom published the following ad in Harretz, “The boy Khalil Sha’er was waiting for a bus near Tekoa, when he was seized and beaten to death by five soldiers. Almost every day in the West Bank and Gaza the army kills children, women and other unarmed people. A matter of routine. While Olmert babbles about peace, the occupation is getting more and more deadly, destructive and rapacious.”
Faculty For Israeli-Palestinian Peace (FFIPP-USA) reported, April 23, “On April 18, around midnight, the Israeli army attacked the home of peace activist Refai Fayyed in the village of Zbabdeh near Jenin. The IDF terrorized the Fayyed family with attack dogs, beat them, forced them out of their home, trashed their home, destroyed computers and personal property, and kidnapped Refai’s brother Mohammad Abdulla Asaad Fayyad who is 17 years old high school student. The family has not received any information about the whereabouts Mohammad since that night. Three other students at Alzababdeh Secondary School where taken as well….”
Interfaith Peace-Builders (IFPB), based in Washington, DC, promotes delegation-based education and advocacy on Israel/Palestine. “IFPB’s delegations to Israel/Palestine emphasize listening to and learning from those immersed in the reality of the conflict, and advancing the work of Israelis and Palestinians committed to nonviolent struggle for peace with justice. We seek to empower delegation participants to educate their local communities and the media, counter inaccurate stereotypes, and advocate for a more just US foreign policy. IFPB has sent 22 delegations with 300 participants to the region since 2001.” Upcoming delegations are October 27 – November 10, March 22 – April 5, and May 24 – June 7. For details contact Interfaith Peace-Builders, 1326 9th St. NW, Washington, DC 20001 (202)244-0821, firstname.lastname@example.org, http://www.ifpbdel.org.
Eliyahu McLean of the Jerusalem Peacemakers reports that the Sulha Peace Project hosted its third annual youth retreat, Feb. 27 – March 2, brining more than ninety Jewish, Christian, Muslim (Israeli Arab and Palestinian from Gaza) and Druze teenagers together for three days of dialogue, prayer, workshops and celebration at the Shaharut desert retreat near Eilat, “striving for peace in our shared homeland”. “The feedback from parents after the retreat was enthusiastic. Many of them expressed how the experience at the Sulhita gathering changed their children’s lives and had a positive affect on the whole family. The parents asked how they too can take steps towards peace and reconciliation. A youth peace leadership program is being developed with twenty four participants to be trained as the next leaders of the Sulhita youth project”. Special thanks to Elad Vazana and Hetam Mrisat, the Jewish and Arab coordinators of the 2007 Sulhita youth gathering.
After weeks of preparation, and a preliminary gathering, close to 2000 people, Jews Arabs and Internationals, gathered to surround the walls of the Old City for the ‘The Big Hug’ of Jerusalem event, focusing on “Love for Jerusalem as the center of the world,” uniting people of all walks of life. The Big Hug included workshops and prayer circles, a walk of the whole city (that also picked up trash, en route), and drumming and singing circles, all calling for peace. For more go to: http://www.loversofjerusalem.org/,
The Israel-Palestine Peace NGO Forum conference, bringing together over 100 Israeli and Palestinian NGO leaders, and 60 European NGO leaders, was hosted by the Region of Tuscany, Italy, June 10-13, for the Israel-Palestine Peace NGO Forum conference. Among the VIP’s who addressed the meeting was Avraham Burg, Yasser Abed Rabbo, the VP of the EU Parliament and the foreign and prime ministers of Italy. The forum formed a number of working groups to work on practical issues for improving conditions and moving toward peace. On June 19 the Abrahamic Reunion (AR) hosted a gathering of 100 Arabs and Jews in the Druze city of Daliat al-Karmel in the Carmel mountains near Haifa, Israel, to re-affirm the path of building bridges for peace in the Holy Land through inter-religious cooperation. The gathering included top religious and political leaders from the Druze, Christian and Muslim and Ahmadiya communities of the Carmel mountains. June 19-29, Jerusalem Peacemakers co-director, Sheikh Abdul Aziz Bukhari and Eliyahu McLean journeyed to Northern Ireland to speak about their reconciliation work and learn from the situation in Northern Ireland. They stayed in the Corrymeela Peace and Reconciliation Centre in Ballycastle and spoke to various mixed Catholic-Protestant, and other, groups. McClean co-taught, with Ruth Broyde Sharone, a week long course, “Peacebuilding 101: the do’s and don’ts on interfaith peacebuilding,” at the bi-annual Jewish Renewal Kallah, in July. For more on Jerusalem Peacemakers go to: http://www.jerusalempeacemakers.org.
The Abraham Path Initiative (API) is working to inspire the opening of a route of cultural and religious tourism through the heart of the Middle East. The route will be centered on a new long-distance walking trail that follows the journey made by the Prophet Abraham – the common patriarch of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam – some 4000 years ago. The purpose of the Abraham Path (Masar Sayyidna Ibrahim) is to inspire cross-cultural exchange and mutual understanding; to promote sustainable tourism and economic development; to help preserve the region‚s historic sites and natural environment; and to generate positive media coverage that highlights the hospitable people of the Middle East and the shared heritage of Abraha’‚s children. The Abraham Path Initiative is an international affiliation of scholars and leaders, sponsored by, and based at, Harvard University’s Global Negotiation Project (‘http://www.pon.harvard.edu/research/projects/ppw.php3’). The Initiative is non-political and non-partisan, affirming the dignity of all people. The project has received endorsements from Nobel Peace Prize winners Jimmy Carter and the Dalai Lama among others. For information contact email@example.com, or go to: http://www.abrahampath.org/about.php?lang=en.
The Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) Health and Human Rights Project (HaHRP – formerly Jewish American Medical Project) will send its fifth delegation to Israel and the occupied Palestinian Territories, October 20- November 3, helping delegation members connect to their counterparts in Israel/Palestine so they can provide assistance while learning first-hand of the situation on the ground. Upon returning, delegation members are expected to use their experience to educate others. While HaHRP began as a medical aid project, it has broadened its focus to enable people with different skills and interests to contribute, including volunteers to help Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian Territories to harvest their olives. For more information please go to: http://www.jewishvoiceforpeace.org/publish/article_877.shtml.
Network for Peace through Dialogue put on the first U.S. mainstream first time Mainstream Jewish community dialogue with Palestinians with a series of “dialogue circle” composed of regular New Yorkers – Jewish Americans, Israelis, Palestinian American Muslims and Christians, committed to conflict transformation – meeting in neighborhoods throughout the city on June 14For details contact Marcia at The Dialogue Project (718)768-2175, firstname.lastname@example.org, http://www.thedialogueproject.org.
Amnesty International is undertaking the Restore “The America I Believe In” Campaign to reverse Bush Administration practices of detaining people indefinitely without charge or trial, and use evidence obtained by cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and restore traditional American values of justice, rule of law, and human dignity. For more information, go to: http://believe.amnestyusa.org/site/c.igLQIUOCKtF/b.2070843/k.BDE5/Home.htm.
Search for Common Ground (SFCG) has begun the Child Soldiers Initiative “to prevent the recruitment and use of children as soldiers. It is estimated that 300,000 children are being used in thirty countries worldwide, as soldiers, human mine detectors, porters, spies, messengers, and as a part of suicide missions. Girls are subject to being used as sex slaves and may be taken as involuntary “wives.” This is one of the moral tragedies of our time”. To help solidify peace, and return to a culture of peace, in Nepal, emerging from a long armed conflict, SFCG has initiated a peace building radio soap opera in the Himalayan nation, New Path – New Steps particularly aimed at young people For information contact Search for Common Ground, 1601 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20009 (202)265-4300, email@example.com, http://www.sfcg.org.
The Rebel Letters campaign “is a grassroots effort to support peacebuilding in Darfur, Sudan. Despite the signing of the Darfur Peace Agreement in May 2006 and the presence of African Union peacekeepers on the ground, the crisis in Darfur remains one of the world’s worst humanitarian emergencies. The recent splintering of the rebel movement in Darfur has become a major obstacle to the resumption of peace talks. Unless the rebel groups come together to unite and create a common platform to negotiate with the Sudanese government, a peace process will not be possible. You can help build sustainable peace in Darfur by sending a letter to the rebel group leaders through the campaign website at: http://www.rebelletters.org.”
Amnesty International (AI) and the Human Rights Information & Training Center HRITC) in Yemen held their first workshop in Yemen for NGOs on economic, social and cultural rights, March 21st – 22nd The sessions focused on bring light to various human rights abuses and forms of violence by creating collaboration between local NGOs and International organization, such as Amnesty International, to tackle these critical issues. The Yemeni, Minister of Human Rights, Dr. Khadija Al-Haisami stated to the participants, “It’s of crucial importance to pay closer attention to public rights and freedoms and it is important to reinforce a culture of human rights culture Yemenis and further social awareness by initiating a partnership between the ministry and civil society organizations in Yemen. To ensure the success of such an initiative the Ministry has signed an agreement with the European Union to initiate a joint project to develop the partnership between the Ministry and civil society organizations.” For more information on the event or follow up, see the Yemen Times “Civil Society Organizations discusses economic, social and cultural rights” at http://yementimes.com/article.shtml?i=1035&p=local&a=2.
World Goodwill is a non-governmental organization affiliated with the United Nations Department of Public Information that works to strengthen recognition of the need for the energy of goodwill in solving human problems and in conduct of world affairs. World goodwill has identified 9 global foundations, initiatives, movements, as emerging evidence of group service: The World Future Council; Worldchanging.com; The Web of Hope; Lawyers Without Borders; Globalisation for the Common Good; Gather the Women Global Matrix; La Via Campesina; The Shuttleworth Foundation; and EarthAction. For more on the World Goodwill go to: http://www.lucistrust.org/en/service_activities/world_goodwill__1/newsletter/recent_issues/2007. The World Future Council “was set up to provide a body of expert opinion with a global point of view informed by ethics, experience and wisdom. It is comprised of fifty individuals, chosen after extensive consultation, to provide as broad a representation as possible by geography, expertise, gender and age. By raising key international challenges from the political-economic to the ethical level, it hopes to initiate change in the rules of global governance. It seeks to represent the shared ethical values of citizens worldwide and perceives its role as speaking up for community living based on the values of non-violence, sustainability, respect and justice. The World Future Council works to close those gaps that separate humanity from a sustainable and peaceful future and promotes long-term solutions”. For details Contact:P.O. Box 11 01 53, D-20401 Hamburg, Germany; Tel. +49 40 30 70 91 40, info at worldfuturecouncil.org, or Trafalgar House, 11 Waterloo Place, London SW1Y 4AU, UK; Tel. +44 (0)20 7863 8833,: info.uk at worldfuturecouncil.org, or 30 Cottage Street, Amherst, MA 01002, USA (413) 549-8118, info.usa at worldfuturecouncil.org, www.worldfuturecouncil.org/.
WORLDCHANGING.com (WCC) “is a web-based NGO which provides links to (and analysis of) those ideas, tools and models which are needed to build a better and more sustainable future. WCC works on the simple premise that that there are many people in the world working for creative change, but the fields in which they work remain unconnected; WCC shows ways in which seemingly unconnected resources can be linked together to help create positive change. The focus of the website and its links is on creative solutions to problems rather than negative critiques. Also, special attention is given to those ideas which may have been overlooked in the mass media. While every link posted on the website is informed by technology, there is recognition of the need to “understand techniques as well as technologies, ideas as well as innovations”, and also the importance of collaboration, building coalitions and movements, growing communities, and “how to make… businesses live up to their highest potential and how to make the promise of democracy into a reality”. There are seven resource sections on the website: Stuff: Green design, sustainable food and farming, emerging technologies; Shelter: Green Building, Energy, Water, Refugees and Relief. Cities: Urban Design, Transportation ,Megacities, Leapfrogging. Communities: Health, Education, Empowering Women, Philanthropy, Social Entrepreneurship, Arts and Culture, Business: Transforming Business, Socially Responsible Investment, Bright Green Economy, Branding & Marketing. Politics: Communications, Networking & Activism, Citizen Media, Transparency and Human Rights, Nonviolence. Planet: Climate Change, Sustainable Development, Biodiversity and Ecosystems, New Science, Future. For information contact: Worldchanging, 1517 12th Ave., Seattle, Washington 98122, USA; Web: www.worldchanging.com.
The Web of Hope, “a UK registered Charity, is an online global resource which highlights initiatives that are helping to create a more sustainable existence between humanity and the planet. Through this website, a series of publications, and various educational roadshows, a dynamic and ever-expanding platform is provided for initiatives, projects, mechanisms and technologies which can lead to positive change whether it be at the family, community, business or governance level. The Web of Hope offers a positive approach to the ecological crisis because it celebrates solutions and offers them as guidance and inspiration to others – creating a widening virtuous circle of positive change. For example, under the section on the website headed 10 Things You Can Do, links are provided to those steps that can be taken now to help people live more sustainable, on the premise that every individual action counts and significant change is always propelled by a critical mass of informed decision. The Things You can Do include: Transport: making the transition to pedal power; Habitat : ideas about energy saving and greening the home; Energy : advice about switching to green and renewable electricity schemes; Water; advice on water conservation; Economics : information on ethical investments; Biodiversity: planting herbs, wildflowers, trees and going carbon-neutral; Organization: campaigning on local issues; Food: a link to the Soil Association website; Health : the value of laughter and walking; Oceans: buying fish from sustainable sources; Peace: a link to the website of Peace One Day; Education: forwarding the web page to friends. For more information contact The Web of Hope, Suite 256, 3 Edgar Buildings, Bath BA1 2FJ, United Kingdom; firstname.lastname@example.org, Web: http://www.thewebofhope.com.
Lawyers Without Borders (LWOB) “was founded in January 2000 by the American lawyer, Christina M. Storm ,to create a global association of lawyers dedicated to the promotion and protection of human justice through the provision of pro bono services around the world. LWOB links its members to non-profit and community-based organizations working with low-income, underserved, and disadvantaged communities in need of human rights protection. It relies exclusively on volunteer lawyers, students, and other law-related professionals to offer a wide array of legal services to non-profit organizations, thereby enabling these organizations to increase their programmatic capacity, strengthen their infrastructure and otherwise serve their communities more effectively and at a lower cost. Through the promotion and protection of human justice at the international level, LWOB has acted as a global ambassador for the legal profession. Advances in communication and technology have enabled LWOB to access geographical areas that were previously isolated from developed economies and directly service citizens in those areas. LWOB has now become a global organization, connecting regions of the world to highly skilled lawyers with a personal interest in international development and public welfare initiatives. Current projects are ongoing or planned in the following regions: Ethiopia, Liberia, Palestinian Territories (Israel), Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania and Mozambique. One interesting focus of its work is “CLEARS”. This connects Student/University teams to the human rights or international law research needs of non-profit organizations anywhere in the world. This linkage brings a resource to non-profits and also benefits the students by giving them “hands-on” experience with real international law questions, as opposed to the current framework which usually has students just working on hypothetical problems. LWOB is increasingly asked to aid lawyers at risk. This often involves a rapid response to urgent action requests or intervention in situations where a lawyer or judge – frequently representing a human rights activist in Court proceedings – is suddenly the target of criminal prosecution. This initiative aims to find innovative, “out of the box” and “under the radar” methods for addressing and protecting lawyers at risk around the world. As a result of LWOB’s strict adherence to its neutrality mandate, its activity in the ‘Lawyer At Risk’ field is frequently characterised by behind the scenes negotiation. LWOB’s team of New York based volunteer lawyers and law students has assumed much of the oversight of this project model. LWOB has had observers in Ethiopia for the last several months and has plans to dispatch lawyers to other regions for trial observations in the coming months. Regions currently being investigated include cases in The Gambia, Libya, Philippines and Vietnam. In 2003, LWOB was granted associative status with United Nations Department of Public Information, UN-DPI, and it was granted consultative status with ECOSOC in 2004. For more, contact: Lawyers Without Borders, Inc., 330 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06106, USA (860)541-2288, Web: http://www.lawyerswithoutborders.org.
Globalisation for the Common Good (GCG) came into being “in order to provide a better understanding of the role of religions in the age of globalization, in 2002,” ihn Oxford, England. “This movement is for “Rekindling the Human Spirit and Compassion in Globalization”. The aim is to have an alternative to the current dominant economic/free trade globalization and to make globalization good for all.” “The mission of Globalisation for the Common Good is to promote ethical, moral and spiritual values in the areas of economics, commerce, trade and international relations amongst others, to advance understanding and action on major global issues by civil society, private enterprise, the public sector, governments, and national and international institutions, leading to the promotion of collaborative policy solutions to the challenges posed by globalisation. GCG is committed to the idea that the marketplace is not just an economic sphere, ‘it is a region of the human spirit’ – thus, the problem and challenge of globalization should be seen not only from an economic point of view, but also from ethical, spiritual and theological perspectives. As it has been observed by many throughout history, religion has been both a source of blessing and curse. Religion has been, and is, a major factor in many conflicts and wars around the world. There is a real danger now that these unwelcome truths about the true meaning and function of religion, combined with political/economic injustice, human rights abuses, poverty, hatred, fear, ignorance, globalization, war as an instrument of imperial policy, and the failure to respect international legal or ethical principles, will aggravate conflicts, intolerance, and even anarchy around the world.” “GCG affirms the conviction that a genuine inter-faith dialogue and co-operation is a significant way of bringing the world together; leading to the creation of a harmonious environment needed to build a world of peace, justice and prosperity for all. The call for Globalisation for the Common Good is an appeal to our essential humanity to deal with some of the most pressing concerns of peoples the world over.” CGC publishes the Journal of Globalization for the Common Good, bi-annually (spring and fall), and each issue focuses on a particular theme, topic, or region of the world. It is available to interested individuals free of charge (open access), and is hosted by the Center for Global Studies, Purdue University Calumet, Hammond, Indiana, USA, at: http:// lass.calumet.purdue.edu/cca/jgcg/.
Globalisation for the Common Good, at its 6th Annual International conference, in Istanbul, in July, undertook the Globalisation for the Common Good Initiative (GCGI), voicing three concrete commitments: 1) Creating an international network of organizations, whose aims and operations resonate with those of GCGI, to facilitate the sharing of ideas, information, and courses of constructive action, drawing upon the broad experience and expertise of the growing GCGI family of activists, scholars, religious and spiritual leaders, and committed individuals, to create a dynamic, interactive network for the active exchange of information, dates, and events; 2) Developing and maintaining a dynamic list of “what‚s working”: initiatives, projects, and civil society organizations that are making a significant contribution to the common good on the GCGI web site and in the Journal of Globalization for the Common Good; and 3) Engaging young persons from around the world in the work of Globalisation for the Common Good, including participation in future conferences, international exchange programs, inter-religious and intercultural study and dialogue, and other initiatives. Interested people and organizations invited you to submit a brief resume or article of no more than 400 words about their work and how it aligns with the vision of GCGI. Selected offerings will be listed on our web site and in the Journal of Globalization for the Common Good. To read the entire Istanbul statement, go to: http://www.globalisationforthecommongood.info/conferences/past-conferences/2007-istanbuld-declaration). To contact GCG, email Kamran Mofid at: email@example.com, http://www.globalisationforthecommongood.info.
Gather the Women Global Matrix (GTW) “is a new kind of organic, self-organizing grassroots initiative to awaken the leadership potential of the women of the world. Gather the Women (GTW) uses the new technology of the internet to magnify and mobilize the enormous potential of feminine wisdom; at the same time, GTW recognizes the ancient tradition of gathering in circles where one woman reaching out to connect with another woman can experience the power of shared intention. Over 6,000 women worldwide have experienced the core intention of Gather the Women: joyfully expressing the power of women’s wisdom. GTW is a gathering place for women and women’s organizations who share a belief that the time is now to activate the incredible power of women’s wisdom on a planetary scale.” “One of the core values of Gather the Women is balance — to bring the world back into balance by practicing the discipline of keeping ourselves in balance. GTW encourages both women and men to seek balance between their masculine and feminine qualities, so that they can merge the masculine ability to accomplish with the feminine capacity for connection into a powerful new form of human action… While the Matrix itself is a place where women can gather to explore their own expression of that balance, GTW needs and welcomes the support of men who share this commitment to balance”. “GTW remains committed to building global participation in and recognition of International Women’s Day, offering a clearinghouse for information about the diverse events being created that day. A list of resources has been developed on the website through a collaborative process and will be growing with time”. For details contact: Gather the Women Global Matrix, 25A Crescent Drive #268, Pleasant Hill, CA 94523, USA;,firstname.lastname@example.org, http://www.gatherthewomen.org,
La Vía Campesina “is an international movement which coordinates peasant organizations of small and medium sized producers, agricultural workers, rural women, and indigenous communities from Asia, America, and Europe. It is an autonomous, pluralistic movement, independent from all political, economic, or other denominations. It is integrated by national and regional organizations whose autonomy is jealously respected. Vía Campesina is organized in seven regions as follows: Europe, Northeast and Southeast Asia, South Asia, North America, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. Vía Campesina is also collaborating with other organizations in Africa”. “The principal objective of Vía Campesina is to develop solidarity and unity in the diversity among small farmer organizations, in order to promote economic relations of equality and social justice; the preservation of land; food sovereignty; sustainable agricultural production; and an equality based on small and medium-sized producers. In order to achieve these objectives, Vía Campesina has defined its strategies among which are the following: The articulation and strengthening of its member organizations. Influencing power and decision-making centers within governments and multilateral organizations in order to redirect the economc and agricultural policies that affect small and middle-scale producers. The strengthening of women’s participation in social, economic, political, and cultural matters. The formulation of proposals in relation to important issues such as: agrarian reform, food sovereignty, production, trade, research, genetic resources, biodiversity, environment and gender”. The international forum of Via Campesina took place in Mexico City August 1-2, with many of the 149 organizations from 56 countries discussing alternatives to neoliberalglobalization. For information contact International Operative Secretariat, La Vía Campesina, Jl. Mampang Prapatan XIV No. 5, Jakarta Selatan, DKI Jakarta, Indonesia, 12790; Tel: +62-21-7991890, http://viacampesina.org/.
The Shuttleworth Foundation’s concern is, “If we are to lift Africa from her current circumstances, we will need a generation of learners that are gifted with curiosity about the world in which they live, and the tools to understand and shape that world.” These visionary words of Mark Shuttleworth embody the philosophy of the Shuttleworth Foundation , which he founded in 2000. The Foundation focuses on several broad themes in education and technology in order to offer creative solutions to the challenges faced by the developing world. Some of these initiatives include”: leadership and management, communications and analysis, open source (Open source software embraces the philosophy of sharing), and telecommunications. “We live in a new age – technology is changing the way we do business, communicate, educate and entertain. It is not knowledge that drives society or economies, but the ability to gain knowledge, and critically, what we do with that knowledge – this has promoted education and technology as the new frontier…. Our goal is to invest in projects that offer unique and innovative solutions to educational challenges faced by the developing world.” For more information contact: Shuttleworth Foundation, PO Box 4163, Durbanville, Cape Town, 7551, South Africa; Tel: + 27 21 970 1200,: email@example.com, http://www.shuttleworthfoundation.org.
EarthAction “works to combine the internet, global civil society and celebrity involvement to empower people to protect the planet and defend their rights. It works from the premise that we have all the necessary knowledge and resources at our disposal and only need the will to solve our problems. Through the internet, ordinary people can help to create a more just, sustainable world by participating in EarthAction’s global action alert network. This already includes thousands of citizens and over 1,900 citizen groups in 161 countries, two thirds of which are in the developing world. Current issues involving persistent campaigning include the prevention of dangerous climate change and the promotion of renewable energy by reaching people in developing countries with information about the problem and its likely impact on their lives. It has also launched a new coalition of citizen groups, called Citizens Century, who work for a more democratic and effective UN to help meet the needs of the world’s poor. Other campaigns include control of the global AIDS epidemic by collaborating with UNAIDS and Population Fund, as well as combating the degradation of fertile land, the protection of forests, the elimination of nuclear weapons, controlling the weapons trade and banning landmines.
EarthAction has initiated Planet Postcards (electronic and printed) and several times a year participants in the network receive these action alerts. Each Planet Postcard focuses on a single issue and gives all the information needed for participants to send a timely, effective message to a government.Sometimes an issue is introduced via a well known celebrity e.g. Leonardo diCaprio in the case of the climate change campaign and the Brazilian footballer, Ronaldo, for the new AIDS campaign. EarthAction uses a wide range of media and its well-researched Action Kit containing the Planet Postcard is sent to its network in over 160 countries.” For information contact EarthAction, 30 Cottage Street, Amherst, MA 01002, USA (413)549-8118; EarthAction, Antonia López de Bello 80, Recoleta, Santiago, Chile; Tel: +56 9-826 1727, earthaction.org, www.earthaction.org.
The Sudan Divestment Task Force, which collaborates with Save Darfur coordinates local campaigns to pressure state governments to divest their holdings (usually pension funds) from businesses operating in Sudan. So far the states that have divested in whole or in part are: OR, CA, CO, IA, IL, IN, MD, NJ, CT, VT, ME. For more information go tohttp://www.sudandivestment.org.
Care 2 is concerned that tensions between Niger’s government and the nomadic Tuareg peoples, that have been recurring for many years, have taken a violent turn, as soldiers have been deployed to Niger’s uranium-rich Tuareg lands. Care 2 urges the President of Niger to reconsider the military solution and open dialogue with the Tuareg Niger Movement for Justice, NMJ. For more, go to: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/peace-in-niger.
East Timor and Indonesia Action Network & West Papua Advocacy Team sees “the presence in West Papua of Col. Burhanuddin Siagian, a senior Indonesian army officer indicted for crimes against humanity charges in East Timor (now called Timor-Leste) endangers human rights defenders and political activists. Recently Col. Siagian threatened to “destroy” peaceful dissidents in the contested region. Urge Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono to withdraw Col. Siagian from Papua and suspend him from duty. Please let us know if you contact President Yudhoyono, and of any response you receive: http://etan.org/action/fax/faxsby.htm; fax President Yudhoyono via ETAN or write: President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono; Istana Merdeka, Jakarta10110, Indonesia; Fax: + 62 21 345 2685 / 526 8726/”
This year the Fourth Freedom Forum celebrates its twenty-fifth year of promoting a more civilized world based on the force of law, rather than the law of force. The Forum’s mission to achieve “freedom from fear” is supported by three distinct areas of program activity: 1) Security Council sanctions, 2) global cooperation against terror, and 3) the reduction and elimination of nuclear weapons. These areas of Fourth Freedom Forum activity can be accessed at: http://kroc.nd.edu/research/econsanc-pub.shtml, The Sanctions and Security Project; http://www.globalct.org/, The Center for Global Counter-Terrorism Cooperation; and http://www.faithfulsecurity.org. On 30 April 2007 the Fourth Freedom Forum cosponsored a sanctions symposium at the United Nations with the Permanent Mission of Greece to the United Nations, tracing the evolution of Security Council sanctions in recent years from comprehensive and “stand alone” measures to combined “smart” or “targeted” measures that are aimed at decision-making elites and that seek to prevent conflict while avoiding harm to the general population. The conference report is available at: http://www.fourthfreedom.org/pdf/4thfreedom_Sanctions_report_july13.pdf, and printed copies of prepared statements and reports can be obtained through Linda Gerber-Stellingwerf, firstname.lastname@example.org. The forum’s Security Council Counter-Terrorism Review Project Workshops were held, April 9, in New York, aimed at providing an independent, comprehensive assessment of the United Nations Security Council’s overall counter-terrorism contributions since 2001. The workshops were producing a report to be released in the second half of 2007 that provides independent recommendations for improving the Security Council’s counter-terrorism program. In its most recent report, the Fourth Freedom Forum’s Center on Global Counter-Terrorism Cooperation looks at the challenges and prospects for implementing the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy in Southeast Asia, which can be obtained by going to: <http://www.globalct.org/pdf/07Mar28JapanReport.pdf>http://www.globalct.org/pdf/07Mar28JapanReport.pdf. On March 15 and 16, the Fourth Freedom Forum’s Center on Global Counter-Terrorism Cooperation and the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi convened a two-day workshop, “Security and Liberty,” which examined the relationship between human rights and counter-terrorism. The National Religious Partnership on the Nuclear Weapons Danger (NRPN), a project of the Fourth Freedom Forum and the Churches’ Center for Theology and Public Policy, responded to the Bush administration’s “Complex 2030” proposal to design and build new nuclear warheads, joining the Friends Committee on National Legislation in a statement against the Complex 2030 program, signed by seventy-four religious organizations and denominations. In February 2007, NRPN and the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism co-hosted a two-day consultation on the nuclear weapons danger for senior Jewish leaders. Conversation topics ranged from the Israeli nuclear program, the theological reasons why the Jewish community should be engaged in this issue, the Iranian nuclear standoff, and the administration’s proposal to build up new nuclear warheads. NRPN and the Religious Action Center are continuing their partnership and have established a committee to focus on outreach to the Jewish community and follow-up from the consultation. For more information, contact the Fourth Freedom Forum, 803 North Main Street, Goshen, Indiana 46528 (800)233-6786, X10, email@example.com, http://www.fourthfreedom.org/pdf/4thfreedom.
The ENOUGH Project to abolish genocide and mass atrocities‚ supported by the International Crisis Group primarily focuses on mass action, works with the activist constituency to promote a policy agenda based on the three Ps: peace, protection of civilians and punishment of the guilty, and to build greater consensus around the steps that must be taken to prevent mass atrocities and genocide in the future. The crises on which it is initially focusing are those in Darfur, the Congo and Uganda. For information and materials from ENOUGH in the future, please visit http://www.enoughproject.org.
The Elders, an alliance of an elite group of senior statesmen dedicated to solving thorny global problems, held its inaugural meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, on founding member Nelson Mandela’s 89th birthday. The members include Desmond Tutu, South African archbishop emeritus of Capetown; former U.S. President Jimmy Carter; former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan; Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and Mohammed Yunus, the Nobel laureate and founder of the Green Bank in Bangladesh. Others involved include Indian microfinance leader Ela Bhatt; former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland; former Chinese ambassador to the United States Li Zhaoxing. The Elders are addressing some of the world’s most pressing problems -climate change, pandemics such as AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, and violent conflicts. For more, go to: http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/07/18/2612/.
Friends Committee on National Legislation (245 Second St. NE, Washington, DC 20002), PAX (Promoting the Abrogation of Xenophobia) and NetWorks Productions Inc. (PO Box 9509, Santa Fe, NM 87504 (505) 989-4482, www.NetworkEarth.org) are working to stop the bush Administration’s Plans to develop new atomic weapons, which they see as promoting nuclear weapons proliferation and a nuclear arms race.
Humanitarian Dialogue (HD Center) put on a retreat for African peace mediators, supported by the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Zanzibar, April 23-25, focusing on specific examples in an attempt to improve the practice of mediating between warring factions on the continent. Participants included President Amani Abeid Karume, President of Zanzibar; President Chandrika Kumaratunga, Former President of Sri Lanka; President Benjamin William Mkapa, Former President of Tanzania; Dr Attala Bashir, Executive Secretary, Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD); General Lamine Cisse, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General to the Central African Republic; Ambassador Said Djinnit, Commissioner for Peace and Security, African Union; Mr Luis Moreno-Ocampo, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC). HD Center initiated the retreat out of a concern that, with all the immensely deadly conflicts in Africa, which require negotiations to eventually end them, not enough attention has been paid to employing mediation to prevent them, and to bring them to early conclusions, nor to develop an understanding of how negotiated settlement can be most successful in African contexts. The Government of Norway cosponsored the annual Oslo Forum, with Humanitarian Dialogue the retreat takes place annually, June 29, bringing together senior conflict mediators and key peace process actors seeking to resolve conflict through dialogue to share practical experiences of mediating between warring factions all over the world as part of an ongoing effort to improve the global response to armed conflicts. HD Center “believes that the role of parliamentarians is critical in turning the tide of gun proliferation and violence. By strengthening or creating national laws, improving implementation and enforcement, stimulating and leading public debate, parliaments set new standards for reducing the societal impacts of gun violence,” and has published a handbook for parliamentarians and legislators, around the world, with the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Missing Pieces: A guide for reducing gun violence through parliamentary action. The HD Centre has been active in mediating conflicts in Timor-Leste, (see “On going Developments”, below, for more) Aceh; Nepal; The Philippines and Darfur among others. For information, contact Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, 114 rue de lausanne, Geneva, Geneva 1202, Switzerland, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.hdcentre.org.
The International Relations Center (IRC), working to “make the United States a more responsible global leader and partner,” has closed down after almost 30 years of operation, but its programs have moved. The Americas Program and the Global Good Neighbor Initiative have moved to the Center for International Policy (CIP: http://www.ciponline.org) in Washington, DC., with Laura Carlsen and Katie Kohlstedt, in Mexico City, Tom Barry in Silver City, New Mexico and network of contributors across the hemisphere. The Americas Program provides political analysis, North-South dialogues, and in-depth reports on important issues throughout the hemisphere, in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. For details go to: http://www.americaspolicy.org. Other programs the IRC created, Right Web (http://rightweb.irc-online.org) and Foreign Policy In Focus (http://www.fpif.org/) are continuing under former co-sponsor, the Institute for Policy Studies (http://www.ips-dc.org/).
The Americas Program and the Global Good Neighbor Initiative, programs of the New Mexico-based International Relations Center, which became programs of the Center for International Policy based in Washington, DC as of June 1, are concerned about the impacts of the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) initiative, secretly launched expansions of Nafta, initiated in March 2005 at a meeting of the three Heads of State from the U.S., Canada and Mexico, to imposes “Deep Integration” on the people of these three North American countries. “The process of Deep Integration is not on the public’s radar screen, further breaking down the border between Canada, the U.S. and Mexico for commerce and capital. Under the guise of ‘harmonizing’ national policies, the SPP’s deep integration plan will lead to further job loss, reductions in social programs, and changes in the use of natural resources, environmental protections and national security policies” If you are interested in more about this issue, subscribe to our Trade and Integration listserve by emailing email@example.com with the message “Subscribe Trade and Integration”. Also, see Laura Carlsen’s article about the SPP at: http://americas.irc-online.org/am/4276>http://americas.irc-online.org/am/4276, with printer-friendly pdf version at:http://americas.irc-online.org/pdf/columns/0705spp.pdf>http://americas.irc-online.org/pdf/columns/0705spp.pdf. For more information about the U.S. Social Forum go to: http://www.ussf2007.org>http://www.ussf2007.org.
The West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) is the leading organization in peacebuilding, conflict prevention, transformation and mitigation in Africa. WANEP holds an annual, three-week peacebuilding training course at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) in Accra, Ghana, which this year will be held at KAIPTC from September 3 to 21, 2007. Further information is available at: <https://tcmail1.tc.columbia.edu/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.wanep.org/wapi>http://www.wanep.org/wapi.
Centre for Human Development and Social Transformation – Nigeria had its formal launching, with training on peace and civic education in the Niger Delta, March 29 – April 1 at Toki Hotels Port Harcourt, with the opening ceremony witnessed by members of civic society, government officials and members of the public. The full report is on the Centre’s website: www.protectourfuture.org.
Peace Voice “is devoted to changing U.S. national conversation about the possibilities of peace and the inadvisability of war. Our main goal is to link professors and professionals of the field of Conflict Resolution/Peace Work to the mainstream media. We invite you to send us your peace and justice editorials which we will then work to place in newspapers within the US. Please join us in awakening people to the importance of making discussions of peace more a part of daily conversation and setting goals toward peace more of a reality. For submissions contact firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Dr. Saroj Pandey, working in the area of peace education and a member of the National Focus Group on Peace Education reports that the National Council of Educational Research and Training – India has taken leadership in extensive “efforts to integrate peace concerns in the school education curricula and teacher education programs [across India], both at the pre-service and in-service level and has recently brought out the National Curriculum Framework (2005) for school education in which major emphasis is given on integrating peace values across the entire school activities. This curriculum framework is based on the principles of a constructivist approach and provides ample opportunity for promoting peace through dialogue, experiential learning, active listening, and problem solving and conflict resolution. It aims at developing more mature and self-directed learners and emphasizes continuing and lifelong learning.” For more information contact Dr. Saroj Pandey, email@example.com.
The Peace, War, and Social Conflict Section (PWSC) of the
American Sociological Association meets annually at the ASA meeting in August. For information go to:
The Tripartite Forum on Interfaith Cooperation for Peace sponsored a UN forum on interfaith dialogue during the General Assembly meeting, September 21, 2006. The Baha’i community of Iceland has joined with 12 other faith groups and collaborating partners initiated the Iceland Forum for Interfaith Dialogue, November 24, 2006. For more information on the interfaith forums, see One Country, Newsletter of the Baha’i International Community, October-December 2006. pp. 6-7, or contact One Country, Baha’I International Community, Suite 120, 866 United Nations Plaza, New York, NY 10017.
Earth Scouts is a new national program in the United States developed by Earth Charter US to inspire the qualities of appreciating one another’s differences, having awe and a sense of wonder about nature and the cosmos, engaging in making their school and community better, valuing independence and cooperation, seeking peaceful solutions to problems, and welcoming new knowledge and experiences in boys and girls from 3 to 13 years of age and engages them in actions. Earth scouts is based on the Earth Charter: A Declaration of Interdependence, with badges centered on universal human rights, eliminating poverty (economic justice), participatory democracy, respect for nature and a culture of peace. For details go to: http://www.earthscouts.org, or contact Genie Skypek: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org or call Earth Charter US, (813) 254-8454, http://www.earthcharterus.org.
The Peace Company in collaboration with a Global Peace Exchange in partnership with Voices of Eden and Sacred Peace Tours of Galilee is offering tours to Israel, The Holy Land, October 21 – November 2 and March 30 to April 11. Sacred Peace Tours are an integral part of cultivating a Culture of Peace, becoming a Peace Ambassador, building bridges of compassion with our brothers and sisters in the Middle East. For information contact the Peace Company, 54 Maple Street, Bristol, VT 05443 (888)455-5355, (802)453-7191, email@example.com, http://www.ThePeaceCompany.com.