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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Department of Peace

Thursday, October 25, at 3 pm in the Library's Chao Auditorium, I'm participating in a panel discussion on the proposed new Cabinet-level Department of Peace.

Dot Maver, Executive Director of The Peace Alliance, is the visiting guest.

Discussion will focus on issues relating to legislation currently pending in Congress. The bill proposes the following:
  • A Secretary of Peace, who will advise the president on peacebuilding needs, strategies, and tactics for use domestically and internationally.

  • The creation of a Peace Academy, a sister organization to our military service academies, which will build a world-class faculty of peacebuilding experts. They will analyze peacebuilding strategies at the highest level, advise other branches of government, and facilitate the training of peacebuilders for domestic and international service.

  • Funding to create and expand proven domestic peacebuilding programs in our communities, such as mediation trainings for police, firefighters, and other emergency services personnel; alternative dispute resolution techniques, peer mediation and nonviolent communication programs in public schools, etc.

  • Providing ways to meaningfully prevent conditions of conflict before violence erupts.

  • The institutional platform necessary to successfully apply American genius to dramatically alleviate our national and global epidemic of violence.
Obviously, the U.S. Institute of Peace does not have this kind of authority.

The House bill currently has 68 co-sponsors (including Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich). None are from Kentucky.

Celebrity support comes from Walter Cronkite -- as well as Paula Abdul...and Flea.

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