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Kozue Akibayashi is International President of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. She is a feminist researcher/activist and has worked on issues of gender and peace. She is a professor at the Graduate School of Global Studies, Doshisha University, in Kyoto, Japan. Akibayashi was a delegate to Women Cross DMZ. She has long protested U.S. and Japanese militarism in Okinawa.
Gar Alperovitz has had a distinguished career as a historian, political economist, activist, writer, and government official. For fifteen years, he served as the Lionel R. Bauman Professor of Political Economy at the University of Maryland, and is a former Fellow of Kings College, Cambridge University; Harvard’s Institute of Politics; the Institute for Policy Studies; and a Guest Scholar at the Brookings Institution. He is the author of critically acclaimed books on the atomic bomb and atomic diplomacy. Alperovitz has served as a legislative director in both houses of Congress and as a special assistant in the State Department. He is also the president of the National Center for Economic and Security Alternatives and is a co-founder of the Democracy Collaborative, a research institution developing practical, policy-focused, and systematic paths towards ecologically sustainable, community-oriented change and the democratization of wealth. He is the co-chair of the Next System Project, a project of the Democracy Collaborative.
Pat Alviso is the National Coordinator for Military Families Speak Out, a national organization with members across the United States who have or have had loved ones in the military since September 11, 2001. As a mother of an active duty Marine, she speaks on behalf of military families nationally and has helped lead three delegations to the White House. She has counseled thousands of military families, Gold Star families and military, providing support services, and creating forums and opportunities for them to speak out against the unjust wars in the Middle East. Her 40 years of experience in the classroom have allowed her to serve on the steering committee for the National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth, NNOMY.
Mubarak Awad is the Founder and national President of the Youth Advocate Program, which provides alternative foster care and counseling to “at risk” youth and their families. He is also the Founder of the Palestinian Center for the Study of Nonviolence in Jerusalem, and was deported by the Israeli Supreme court in 1988 after being jailed for organizing activities involving nonviolent civil disobedience. Dr. Awad has since formed Nonviolence International, which works with various movements and organizations across the globe.
Jeff Bachman is a Professorial Lecturer in Human Rights and Co-Director of the Ethics, Peace, and Global Affairs MA Program at American University. His teaching and research interests focus primarily on U.S. foreign policy and human rights. He is also interested in the role news media plays in constructing human rights narratives. He is especially interested in the misuse of international law as a political tool through its selective application and enforcement. Bachman has field experience working for Amnesty International in the Government Relations for Europe/Eurasia program.
Medea Benjamin is the co-founder of the women-led peace group CODEPINK and the co-founder of the human rights group Global Exchange. She has been an advocate for social justice for more than 40 years. Described as “one of America’s most committed — and most effective — fighters for human rights” by New York Newsday, and “one of the high profile leaders of the peace movement” by the Los Angeles Times, she was one of 1,000 exemplary women from 140 countries nominated to receive the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the millions of women who do the essential work of peace worldwide. She is the author of eight books, including Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control.
Leah Bolger retired in 2000 from the U.S. Navy at the rank of Commander after twenty years. Her duty stations included Iceland, Japan and Tunisia, and she was selected as a Military Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Strategic Studies Program. She received her master’s degree in national security and strategic affairs from the Naval War College. In 2012 she was elected as the first female President of Veterans For Peace, and in the fall of that year, traveled to Pakistan as part of an anti-drone delegation. In 2013 she was given the honor of presenting the Ava Helen and Linus Pauling Memorial Lecture at Oregon State University. She currently serves as the Secretary of Defense on the Green Shadow Cabinet, the Coordinator for the Drones Quilt Project, and Chair of World Beyond War’s Coordinating Committee.
Maurice Carney is co-founder and executive director of Friends of the Congo. He has worked with Congolese for two decades in their struggle for peace, justice, and human dignity. Carney served as the interim Africa Working Group coordinator for Jesse Jackson while Jackson was Special Envoy to Africa. Carney has worked as a research analyst for the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies and as a research consultant for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation. He worked with civic associations in West Africa where he trained local leaders in research methodology and survey techniques.
Jeremy Corbyn is the leader of the Labour Party and of the Opposition in the UK government. He is a long-time peace activist and past leader of the Stop the War Coalition. (Appearing by video).
David Cortright is the Director of Policy Studies at the Kroc Institute and Chair of the Board of the Fourth Freedom Forum. The author or editor of 18 books, most recently Drones and the Future of Armed Conflict (Chicago University Press, 2015), and Ending Obama’s War (2011, Paradigm), he also is the editor of Peace Policy, Kroc’s online journal. He blogs at davidcortright.net. Cortright has written widely about nonviolent social change, nuclear disarmament, and the use of multilateral sanctions and incentives as tools of international peacemaking. He has provided research services to the foreign ministries of Canada, Denmark, Germany, Japan, The Netherlands, Sweden, and Switzerland, and has served as consultant or advisor to agencies of the United Nations, the Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict, the International Peace Academy, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. As an active duty soldier during the Vietnam War, he spoke against that conflict. In 1978, Cortright was named executive director of SANE, the Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy, which under his leadership grew from 4,000 to 150,000 members and became the largest disarmament organization in the United States. In November 2002, he helped to create Win Without War, a coalition of national organizations opposing the invasion and occupation of Iraq.
Lilly Daigle is the Network Campaigner at Global Zero. She spends her time spearheading Global Zero’s mobilizations against nuclear weapons and working to make our movement more diverse and intersectional. She graduated from Warren Wilson College in 2011 with a degree in Global Studies and Peace and Conflict Studies. Alongside eliminating nuclear weapons, she’s passionate about climate justice and anti-racism work and is a fierce feminist.
John Dear is an internationally recognized voice for peace and nonviolence. As a priest, pastor, retreat leader, and author, he served for years as the director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation. After September 11, 2001, he became a Red Cross coordinator of chaplains at the Family Assistance Center in New York, and counseled thousands of relatives and rescue workers. Dear has traveled the war zones of the world, been arrested some 75 times for peace, led Nobel Peace prize winners to Iraq, visited Afghanistan, and given thousands of lectures on peace. His 35 books include: The Nonviolent Life; The Beatitudes of Peace; Walking the Way; Thomas Merton Peacemaker and Transfiguration. He has been nominated many times for the Nobel Peace Prize, including by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Sen Barbara Mikulski. He works for Campaign Nonviolence.
Thomas Drake was a senior official at the National Security Agency when he witnessed not only widespread waste, fraud, and abuse, but also gross violations of 4th Amendment rights. He was a material witness and whistleblower on a multi-year Department of Defense Inspector General audit of a failed multi-billion dollar flagship program called TRAILBLAZER and a breakthrough multi-million dollar intelligence data collection, processing, and analysis system called THINTHREAD. The Department of Justice retaliated by indicting and prosecuting Drake under the Espionage Act and, once again, became the laughing stock of the legal profession.
Mel Duncan is a co-founder and current Director of Advocacy and Outreach for Nonviolent Peaceforce, an international non-governmental organization that provides direct protection to civilians caught in violent conflict and works with local civil society groups on violence deterrence throughout the world. Duncan’s first exposure to unarmed civilian protection came in 1984 when he stayed as a volunteer in a Nicaraguan village to deter attacks from the Contra. The Presbyterian Peace Fellowship honored Duncan with its 2010 Peace Seeker award. The Fellowship of Reconciliation USA awarded him its 2007 Pfeffer International Peace Prize in recognition of Nonviolent Peaceforce’s “courageous efforts in conflict regions around the world.” The Utne Reader named Duncan one of “50 Visionaries Who are Changing Our World.” The American Friends Service Committee nominated Nonviolent Peaceforce for the 2016 Nobel Peace Prize.
Pat Elder is the Director of the National Coalition to Protect Student Privacy, a group dedicated to halting the military incursion into U.S. high schools. The coalition, with activists in 30 states, works to expose the fraudulent and deceptive nature of many recruiting programs in the high schools. Elder also serves on the Coordinating Committee of the National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth, NNOMY. Elder’s work appears in War is a Crime, Truth Out, Common Dreams, and Alternet. His work has been covered by NPR, USA Today, The Washington Post, and Education Week. Elder is the author of a soon-to-be-published book on military recruiting in the United States.
Mark Engler is an author and journalist based in Philadelphia. His new book is This Is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt Is Shaping the Twenty-First Century, written with Paul Engler. Mark Engler is an editorial board member at Dissent, a contributing editor at Yes! Magazine, and a senior analyst with Foreign Policy In Focus. Engler serves as a monthly columnist for the Oxford, UK-based New Internationalist magazine. An archive of his work is available at DemocracyUprising.com. Engler has served as a commentator for the Institute for Public Accuracy and for the Mainstream Media Project.
Jodie Evans is co-founder and co-director of CODEPINK and has been a peace, environmental, women’s rights and social justice activist for forty years. She has traveled extensively to war zones promoting and learning about peaceful resolution to conflict. She served in the administration of Governor Jerry Brown and ran his presidential campaign. She has published two books, Stop the Next War Now and Twilight of Empire, and has produced several documentary films, including the Oscar-nominated The Most Dangerous Man in America and Howard Zinn’s The People Speak. Jodie is the board chair of Women’s Media Center and sits on many other boards, including Rainforest Action Network, Drug Policy Alliance, Institute for Policy Studies, Women Moving Millions, and Sisterhood is Global Institute.
Robert Fantina is a member of World Beyond War’s Coordinating Committee and the author of Desertion and the American Soldier, Look Not Unto the Morrow, and Empire, Racism, and Genocide: A History of U.S. Foreign Policy.
Bill Fletcher Jr. has been an activist since his teen years. Upon graduating from college he went to work as a welder in a shipyard, thereby entering the labor movement. Over the years he has been active in workplace and community struggles as well as electoral campaigns. He has worked for several labor unions in addition to serving as a senior staff person in the national AFL-CIO. Fletcher is the former president of TransAfrica Forum; a Senior Scholar with the Institute for Policy Studies; an editorial board member of BlackCommentator.com; and in the leadership of several other projects. Fletcher is the co-author (with Peter Agard) of “The Indispensable Ally: Black Workers and the Formation of the Congress of Industrial Organizations, 1934-1941”; the co-author (with Dr. Fernando Gapasin) of “Solidarity Divided: The crisis in organized labor and a new path toward social justice“; and the author of “‘They’re Bankrupting Us’” – And Twenty other myths about unions.” Fletcher is a syndicated columnist and a regular media commentator on television, radio and the web.
Bruce Gagnon is the Coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He was a co-founder of the Global Network when it was created in 1992. Between 1983–1998 Bruce was the State Coordinator of the Florida Coalition for Peace & Justice. In 2006 he was the recipient of the Dr. Benjamin Spock Peacemaker Award. Bruce initiated the Maine Campaign to Bring Our War $$ Home in 2009 that spread to other New England states and beyond. In 2011 the U.S. Conference of Mayors passed a Bring Our War $$ Home resolution – their first entry into foreign policy since the Vietnam War. Bruce published a new version of his book in 2008 called Come Together Right Now: Organizing Stories from a Fading Empire. He is also host of a public access TV show called This Issue that currently runs in 13 Maine communities.
Brenna Gautam was selected to receive the Kroc Institute’s 2015 Yarrow Award, given annually to a peace studies undergraduate student who demonstrates academic excellence and commitment to service in peace and justice. As a student, Gautam conducted research for the Bureau of International Security and Arms Control in the U.S. State Department and the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation in Washington, D.C. She also interned for Democracy for Development, a Kosovo-based think tank, where she conducted research in Kosovo and Serbia that focused on Kosovar political parties as well as the relationship between customs laws and security in various countries. At Notre Dame, Gautam founded a Notre Dame student chapter of Global Zero, an international movement for the elimination of nuclear weapons, led student participation in nationwide nuclear disarmament campaigns, and presented a conference paper on grassroots organizing and nuclear disarmament in Istanbul, Turkey. She also has conducted research on violence against aid workers and was co-coordinator of the 2015 Student Peace Conference.
Lindsey German is national convenor of the Stop the War Coalition, based in London. German is an author, socialist, and women’s liberationist. (Appearing by video).
Phil Giraldi is a former CIA Case Officer and Army Intelligence Officer who spent twenty years overseas in Europe and the Middle East working terrorism cases. He holds a BA with honors from the University of Chicago and an MA and PhD in Modern History from the University of London. He is a contributing editor at The American Conservative and Foreign Policy Editor and regular contributor for unz.com. He frequently provides commentary on national security and terrorism for the international media. Phil is currently Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest and resides with his wife of 32 years in Virginia horse country close to his daughters and grandchildren. His much beloved and pampered English bulldog is named Dudley.
Maja Groff is an international lawyer based in The Hague, assisting in the negotiation and servicing of multilateral treaties. She works on existing and potential international treaties in areas of child law, issues disproportionately affecting women, disability rights, access to legal information and other topics. She conducts liaison work with professional bodies and other international organisations and has played a key role in the co-ordination of international conferences and experts groups. Admitted to the New York Bar, she serves on the United Nations Committee of the New York City Bar Association, and is a member of the Advisory Boards of BCorp Europe and ebbf.
Odile Hugonot Haber in the early 1980s started the Rank and File Center in San Francisco to work on issues of peace and union activism. She has been a national delegate for the California Nurses Association. She initated Women in Black vigils in the Bay Area in 1988, and served on the board of New Jewish Agenda. She is co-chair of the Middle East Committee of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. In 1995 she was a WILPF delegate to the Fouth World UN Conference on Women in Huairou near Beijing, and attended the first meeting of the Nuclear Abolition 2000 caucus. She was part of organizing a teach-in at the University of Michigan on Nuclear Abolition in 1999. The Middle East and Disarmament committees of WILPF created a statement on a Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone which she distributed to the preparatory meeting of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation meeting in Vienna, the following year. She attended the Haifa conference on this issue in 2013. This past fall she participated in India in the Women in Black Conference and in the Paris climate change conference COP 21 (NGO side). She is the chair of the WILPF branch in Ann Arbor.
David Hartsough is a co-founder of World Beyond War and author of Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activist. He has been an anti-war activist since the 1950s. In 1959, Hartsough became a conscientious objector to war. In 1961 Hartsough participated in sit-ins in Arlington, Va.,which successfully desegregated the lunch counters. Over the next several decades, Hartsough joined a variety of peace efforts in such far-flung locations as the Soviet Union, Nicaragua, Phiippines, and Kosovo, to name just a few. Hartsough made headlines in 1987 when he and S. Brian Willson knelt on the train tracks at the Concord Naval Weapons Station (in California) in an attempt to block a train carrying bombs to Central America. In the early 1990s, Hartsough created the San Francisco-based anti-war group Peaceworkers and In 2002 he co-founded the Nonviolent Peaceforce. Hartsough has been arrested for nonviolent civil disobedience more than 100 times, most recently at the Livermore nuclear weapons labratory in CA. Hartsough has just returned from Russia as a part of a citizens diplomacy delegation hoping to help bring the U.S. and Russia back from the brink of nuclear war.
Jan Hartsough is a peace activist and war tax resister. She is based in San Francisco and has just returned from a trip to Russia. Jan’s interest in war and peace starts with her two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Pakistan 1963-65. Inspired by Gandhi, she tries to combine “obstructive program” (protesting at drone bases in Nevada and California, opposing nuclear weapons development at Livermore Labs, refusing to pay taxes for war, etc ) with “constructive program” (twenty years of organizing access to safe food and water both in the US and abroad). Jan has participated in citizen diplomacy efforts in many conflict areas around the world – most recently in Russia.
Ira Helfand has worked for many years as an emergency room physician and now practices internal medicine at an urgent care center in Springfield, MA. He is a Past President of Physicians for Social Responsibility and is currently the Co-President of its global federation, the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. He has published on the medical consequences of nuclear war in the New England Journal of Medicine, the British Medical Journal, and Medicine and Global Survival, and is the author of the report “Nuclear Famine: Two Billion People at Risk.” IPPNW was the recipient of the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize.
Patrick Hiller is a member of the World Beyond War Coordinating Committee, the Executive Director of the War Prevention Initiative by the Jubitz Family Foundation, adjunct instructor at the Conflict Resolution Program at Portland State University, and Program Officer for the Peacemaking grants at the Jubitz Family Foundation. He holds a Ph.D. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from Nova Southeastern University and a M.A. in Human Geography from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich, Germany. Hiller serves on the Executive Committee of the Governing Council of the International Peace Research Association and serves on the Board of Directors of the International Peace Research Association Foundation. He is a member of the Advisory Council of the organizations International Cities of Peace and PeaceVoice/PeaceVoiceTV, member of the Board of Directors of the Oregon Peace Institute, and member of the Peace and Justice Studies Association and the Peace and Security Funders Group.
Sam Husseini is the communications director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, which puts out timely information on a host of issues including U.S. foreign policy. The Institute put out some of the most critical information regarding dubious claims regarding the Iraq war before the invasion. It has continued doing so on a host of issues including U.S. policy regarding Syria, Russia, Libya and North Korea. Husseini has asked a litany of U.S. political figures tough questions including Colin Powell, John Kerry, John Negroponte and others. He was suspended from the National Press Club for critically questioning a former Saudi Ambassador at the beginning of the Arab uprisings. He is also founder of VotePact.org, which encourages disenchanted Democrats and Republicans to pair up and — instead of self-loathingly voting for Clinton or Trump — both vote for the candidates they actually prefer. He regular writes about politics at CounterPunch, ConsortiumNews and his personal blog: husseini.posthaven.com.
Raed Jarrar is the American Friends Service Committee’s Government Relations Manager at the Office of Public Policy and Advocacy in Washington, D.C. Since his immigration to the U.S. in 2005, he has worked on political and cultural issues pertaining to U.S. engagement in the Arab and Muslim worlds. He is widely recognized as an expert on political, social, and economic developments in the Middle East. He has testified in numerous Congressional hearings and briefings, and he is also a frequent guest on national and international media outlets in both Arabic and English. Born in Baghdad to an Iraqi mother and a Palestinian father, Raed Jarrar grew up in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Iraq.
Larry Johnson is CEO and co-founder of BERG Associates, LLC, an international business-consulting firm with expertise combating terrorism and investigating money laundering. Johnson has analyzed terrorist incidents for a variety of media including the Jim Lehrer News Hour, National Public Radio, ABC’s Nightline, NBC’s Today Show, the New York Times, CNN, Fox News, and the BBC. From 1989-1993, Johnson was a Deputy Director in the U.S. State Department’s Office of Counter Terrorism. From 1985-1989 Johnson worked for the Central Intelligence Agency.
Kathy Kelly will have recently returned from Russia. She has made 20 trips to Afghanistan as an invited guest of the Afghan Peace Volunteers (APVs). She and her companions in Voices for Creative Nonviolence continually learn from the APVs perspective and actions. She has protested drone warfare by joining nonviolent civil resistance actions at U.S. military bases in Nevada, New York, Wisconsin, and Missouri. In 2015, for carrying a loaf of bread and a letter across the line at Missouri’s Whiteman AFB, Kelly served three months in federal prison. In 1988 she had been sentenced to one year in federal prison for planting corn on nuclear missile silo sites at Whiteman. She also spent three months in prison, in 2004, for crossing the line at Fort Benning’s military training school. As a war tax refuser, she has refused payment of all forms of federal income tax since 1980.
John Kiriakou is a former CIA counterterrorism officer, who in 2007 became the first U.S. Government official to publicly confirm and describe CIA use of waterboarding on al-Qaeda prisoners, which he described as torture. In January 2013, Kiriakou was sentenced to 30 months in prison and was released after serving more than 23 months. Since then, he has become a tireless writer and speaker on whistleblowing, torture, and civil liberties. John’s story, as well as that of his attorney, Jesselyn Radack (herself a former Justice Department whistleblower), and former NSA senior executive Thomas Drake is told in “Silenced,” a James Spione film. Kiriakou is the sole U.S. Government official to have been jailed for any reason relating to CIA torture – a victim of the Obama administration’s unprecedented crackdown on government truth-tellers. John was in federal prison, when President Obama openly acknowledged at a White House press conference on August 1, 2014, “We tortured some folks.” John was in prison for having said essentially the same thing seven years earlier.
Dennis Kucinich is an internationally renowned champion of diplomacy and peace. His distinguished career in public service dates back to 1969 and spans councilman, clerk of courts, Mayor of Cleveland, Ohio State Senator, eight-term Member of the U.S. Congress, and two-time candidate for President of the United States.
Peter Kuznick is Professor of History at American University, and author of Beyond the Laboratory: Scientists As Political Activists in 1930s America, co-author with Akira Kimura of Rethinking the Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki: Japanese and American Perspectives, co-author with Yuki Tanaka of Genpatsu to hiroshima – genshiryoku heiwa riyo no shinso (Nuclear Power and Hiroshima: The Truth Behind the Peaceful Use of Nuclear Power), and co-editor with James Gilbert of Rethinking Cold War Culture. In 1995, he founded American University’s Nuclear Studies Institute, which he directs. In 2003, Kuznick organized a group of scholars, writers, artists, clergy, and activists to protest the Smithsonian’s celebratory display of the Enola Gay. He and filmmaker Oliver Stone co-authored the 12 part Showtime documentary film series and book both titled The Untold History of the United States.
Michelle Kwak is the standing President of PEACE (Peace of East Asia through Creative Engagement), a highly regarded academic student organization at American University–where she is also pursuing a dual B.A degree in International Studies and Asian Studies. Her passion primarily lies in International Development, particularly in International Law concerning disability rights and reform policy in East Asia. She was appointed as a “Youth Ambassador for Peace” by the Washington D.C Korean Council in 2016 and her academic work and research has recently been recognized by the Korean Ministry of Defense. Michelle’s experience working with several international non-governmental organizations has fed her academic interest in examining media rhetoric as a tool to shift public policy & opinion.
Alli McCracken is a National CODEPINK Coordinator based in the Washington D.C. office. She graduated from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in May 2010 with a degree in Political Science and Religious Studies. She is passionate about human rights, justice for Palestinians, ending drone warfare, women’s reproductive rights, and all things awesome and fun. Alli can be reached at: Alli@codepink.org.
Ray McGovern, a CIA analyst for 27 years, works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He was born in the Bronx, when membership in the Democratic Party was almost conveyed at Baptism, but he has since annulled his party membership.
Michael McPhearson is Executive Director of Veterans For Peace, where he oversees all VFP programs. He is also co-chair of the Don’t Shoot Coalition, A Saint Louis based coalition that formed in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s police killing death in Ferguson, MO. From August 2010 to September 2013, Michael worked as the National Coordinator with United For Peace and Justice. He works closely with the Newark based People’s Organization for Progress and the Saint Louis centered Organization for Black Struggle. Michel also publishes the Mcphearsonreport.org expressing his views on war and peace, politics, human rights, race and other things. Michael also launched Reclaimthedream.org website as an effort to change the discourse and ignite a new conversation about Dr. Martin Luther King’s message and what it means to live in just and peaceful communities.
Craig Murray was British Ambassador to Uzbekistan from 2002 to 2004 and Rector of the University of Dundee from 2007 to 2010. He is now an author, broadcaster and human rights activist. Murray was awarded the Sam Adams Award in 2006 which citation included the following: “As UK ambassador to Uzbekistan from 2002 to 2004, Mr. Murray learned that the intelligence authorities of the UK and the US were receiving and using information extracted by the most sadistic methods of torture by Uzbek authorities. He protested strongly to London, to no avail. He was forced out of the British Foreign Office, but has no regrets. There are more important things than career…Mr. Murray’s light has pierced a thick cloud of denial and deception. He has set a courageous example for those officials of the ‘Coalition of the Willing’ who have first-hand knowledge of the inhuman practices involved in the so-called ‘war on terror’ but who have not yet been able to find their voice.”
Elizabeth Murray is a former Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near East in the National Intelligence Council (NIC) and was a CIA political analyst for 27 years. A member of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity and the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence, she currently serves as Member-in-Residence at the Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action in Poulsbo, WA where she resists the deployment of Trident nuclear submarines from the local Kitsap-Bangor naval base . In June 2016 Elizabeth joined Ann Wright, Kathy Kelly, David Hartsough and other peace activists in a fact-finding trip to Russia, where, among other things, she organized a “Swim for Peace” in Yalta with military veterans of the former Soviet Union.
Miriam Pemberton is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies. She directs its Peace Economy Transitions Project which focuses on helping to build the foundations of a postwar economy at the federal, state, and local levels. She co-chairs the Budget Priorities Working Group, the principal information-sharing collaboration of U.S. NGOs working on reducing Pentagon spending. She is co-editor of the book Lessons from Iraq: Avoiding the Next War. Formerly she was editor, researcher and finally director of the National Commission for Economic Conversion and Disarmament. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.
Kimberley Phillips is author of War! What Is It Good For? Black Freedom Struggles and the U.S. Military from World War II to Iraq.
Taylor Piepenhagen is the current secretary for the on-campus club Students for Justice in Palestine at American University. Studying International Relations with a focus in Peace and Conflict resolution, Taylor advocates for the importance of intercultural communication between nations and within the local community. Concerned with human rights and nonviolence, both domestically and abroad, she spends her time volunteering within her community, working with international relief organizations, and talking to others about nonviolence activism and the importance of intercultural communications.
Gareth Porter is an independent investigative journalist and historian who specializes on U.S. national security policy. His lastest book is Manufactured Crisis: The Untold Story of the Iran Nuclear Scare, published by Just World Books in 2014. He was a regular contributor to Inter Press Service on Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan from 2005 to 2015. His original investigative stories and analysis are published by Truthout, Middle East Eye, Consortium News, The Nation, and Truthdig, and reprinted on other news and opinion sites. Porter was Saigon bureau chief of Dispatch News Service International in 1971 and later reported on trips to Southeast Asia for The Guardian, Asian Wall Street Journal and Pacific News Service. He is also the author of four books on the Vietnam War and the political system of Vietnam. Historian Andrew Bacevich called his book, Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War, published by University of California Press in 2005, “without a doubt, the most important contribution to the history of U.S. national security policy to appear in the past decade.” He has taught Southeast Asian politics and international studies at American University, City College of New York and the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
Darakshan Raja is Co-Director of the Washington Peace Center and the Helga Herz Organizing Fellow providing grassroots support to local movements. She is the co-founder of the Muslim American Women’s Policy Forum, a collective of Muslim women and women of color allies that work at the intersection of state violence and gender justice. She serves on the Board for API Domestic Violence Resource Project in DC. She has worked with the Urban Institute’s Justice Policy Center on a range of criminal justice evaluations, including a national evaluation of the Violence Against Women Act and the Texas Juvenile Justice Department’s intervention for addressing sexual violence within state facilities.
John Reuwer has been studying and teaching alternatives to violence for 30 years. He is an emergency physician currently consulting with the Vermont Department of Corrections and practicing urgent care medicine. He was a founder of the Grand Rapids, Michigan chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility, a charter member of Physicians for a Violence-Free Society, and a long time member of the Fellowship of Reconciliation. He was a charter member of Christian Peacemaker Teams, a project of the Mennonite, Brethren, and Quaker congregations, and served in Haiti, the Middle East, Washington DC, and most recently Colombia. His latest work has involved learning NonViolent Communication for the prevention of conflict, and applying it clinically to treat patients with depression and anger issues. After participating for 3 years in an ever growing NVC practice group in Virginia, he is involved in several groups practicing and teaching those skills in Vermont.
Maria Santelli has been the director of the Center on Conscience & War (CCW) since 2011. CCW is a 75 year-old organization that works to extend and defend the rights of conscientious objectors to war. Before coming to CCW, Maria was an organizer in New Mexico where she developed the Another Side: Truth in Military Recruiting project, bringing combat and other veterans into the classroom to expose the myths and realities behind the recruiters’ sales pitch. In 2008, Maria founded the New Mexico GI Rights Hotline to provide direct services and resources to members of the military and to be a leading voice statewide on issues of military paricipation and war, including conscientious objection, military sexual violence, PTSD and Moral Injury, and truth in recruitment.
Alice Slater serves on the Coordinating Committee of World Beyond War and as an Advisor with the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. She is a nuclear policy expert involved in nuclear disarmament, non-proliferation, and elimination of weapons issues. She has served as a founder or officer of several major organizations, including Global Resource Action Center for the Environment, Economists Allied for Arms Reduction, Abolition 2000.
Christopher Simpson is a professor of Journalism known internationally for his expertise in propaganda, democracy, and media theory and practice. He has won national awards for investigative reporting, historical writing, and literature. His books include Blowback, The Splendid Blond Beast, Science of Coercion, National Security Directives of the Reagan and Bush Administrations, Universities and Empire, Comfort Women Speak and War Crimes of the Deutsche Bank and Dresdner Bank. Simpson’s work has been translated into more than a dozen languages. His current teaching and research includes macro-social dynamics of communication technologies, impact of geographic information systems on democratic decision-making and some aspects of communication law.
Bob Spies is a volunteer with the Center for Citizen Initiatives (CCI), which has worked to improve US/USSR/Russia relations for 33 years, organizing citizen diplomacy efforts in numerous venues. This June, Bob traveled as part of a CCI-sponsored peace delegation to several parts of Russia–including Crimea. Bob is also a long-time volunteer at Berkeley’s La Peña Cultural Center, which for 40 years has worked on peace and justice issues impacting North and South America. He will be traveling with the La Peña Chorus this coming February on its second tour of Cuba.
David Swanson is an author, activist, journalist, and radio host. He is co-founder and director of World Beyond War and campaign coordinator for RootsAction.org. Swanson’s books include War Is A Lie and When the World Outlawed War. He blogs at DavidSwanson.org and WarIsACrime.org. He hosts Talk Nation Radio. He is a 2015 and 2016 Nobel Peace Prize Nominee.
David Vine is Associate Professor of Anthropology at American University. He is the author of Base Nation: How U.S. Military Bases Overseas Harm America and the World, and of Island of Shame: The Secret History of the U.S. Military Base on Diego Garcia, and co-author, with the Network of Concerned Anthropologists, of the Counter-Counterinsurgency Manual, or Notes on Demilitarizing American Society. Find his work at davidvine.net basenation.us and letusreturnusa.org.
John Washburn is Convener of the American Non-Governmental Organizations Coalition for the International Criminal Court (AMICC), co-chair of the Washington Working Group on the International Criminal Court (WICC), and a past president of the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office. He was a director in the Executive Office of the Secretary-General of the United Nations between January 1988 and April 1993. Thereafter he was a director in the Department of Political Affairs at the United Nations until March 1994. In association with the international NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC), he attended most of the United Nations negotiations on the International Criminal Court beginning in 1994 and including all of the 1998 diplomatic conference in Rome. Washburn was a member of the Foreign Service of the United States from 1963 to 1987. His last assignment was as the member of the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff responsible for international organizations and multilateral affairs.
Harvey Wasserman is a life-long activist who speaks, writes and organizes widely on energy, the environment, history, the drug war, election protection, and grassroots politics. He teaches (since 2004) history and cultural & ethnic diversity at two central Ohio colleges. He works for the permanent shutdown of the nuclear power industry and the birth of Solartopia, a democratic and socially just green-powered Earth free of all fossil and nuclear fuels. He writes for Ecowatch, solartopia.org, freepress.org and nukefree.org, which he edits. He helped found the anti-war Liberation News Service. In 1972 his History of the U.S., introduced by Howard Zinn, helped pave the way for a new generation of people’s histories. In 1973 Harvey coined the phrase “No Nukes” and helped found the global grassroots movement against atomic energy. In 1990 he became Senior Advisor to Greenpeace USA. Harvey’s America at the Brink of Rebirth: The Organic Spiral of U.S. History, which dissects our national story in terms of six cycles, will be published soon at www.solartopia.org.
Barbara Wien, from the time she was 21, has worked to stop human rights abuses, violence and war. She has protected civilians from death squads using cutting-edge peacekeeping methods, and trained hundreds of Foreign Service officers, UN officials, humanitarian workers, police forces, soldiers, and grassroots leaders to de-escalate violence and armed conflicts. She is the author of 22 articles, chapters, and books, including Peace and World Security Studies, a pioneering curriculum guide for university professors, now in its 7th edition. Wein has designed and taught countless peace seminars and trainings in 58 countries to end war.
Larry Wilkerson is a retired U.S. Army soldier and former chief of staff to U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell. Wilkerson is an adjunct professor at the College of William & Mary where he teaches courses on U.S. national security. He also instructs a senior seminar in the Honors Department at George Washington University entitled “National Security Decision Making.”
I do not see the inclusion of a psychological perspective on war. Psychology helps to understand the origins of human behavior. The tendency toward war and other violent behaviors varies by country and is connected with early personal experiences including trauma. When such early personal experiences are common, a cultural pattern develops. This cycle of war and violence can be changed starting with more awareness of the long-term psychological effects of early personal experiences. For more information please see my website.
Einstein told us the most important requirement for world peace: “We shall require a newer way of thinking” that promotes cooperation for mutual gain instead of competition to dominate non-tribe members. See essay “World peace in three years or less … or else!” at http://www.7plus2formula.org
Amazing array of speakers dedicated to opposing war. This conference should draw people from all over the USA – maybe a few from John McCain’s home state too. Why is it an uphill struggle to keep the peace yet war mongers slide down the slippery slope to war so easily?
Good point Mr. Goldman.
Phikip, I think it’s obvious. Provide weapons, destabilize, provide weapons, take control, exploit resources. Including but not limited to human resources. Same MO everyday. Greedy, power hungry, evil people in powerful positions. We will win this. There should be no money involved in politics. There should be no “human” rights for corporations, there should be no wall street, there should be no revolving door for politics and board members/ceo of corporations. There should only be a flat sales tax. No FED, No IRS, No interest lending. That will be a good start. And free energy via renewable and hidden technology.