From 1962 to 1964 I was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Nigeria. I taught at a secondary school in a part of northeastern Nigeria, along the Cameroon border, that is currently under siege by an extremist group called Boko Haram, which translates in the Hausa language somewhat loosely as “Western education is a sin” in an ill-defined attempt to impose their value system on the state.
Poor Katrina van den Heuvel and husband Stephen Cohen, she the editor of The Nation and he a scholar of Russian history and the author of a definitive biography of Nikolai Bukharin, who was executed during Stalin’s mad blood purges, and more recently,
I’m in Washington today with Colombian human rights defender Rosa Liliana Ortiz, meeting with State Department officials and congressional staff to present our findings about the human rights outcomes of billions of dollars of U.S. military assistance in Colombia.
Sometimes it just takes one person with a creative mind to shake up the entire legal system. In the case of Costa Rica, that person is Luis Roberto Zamorra Bolaños, who was just a law student when he challenged the legality of his government’s support for George Bush’s invasion of Iraq. He took the case all the way up to the Costa Rican Supreme Court—and won.
At the core of FOR’s theory of change is the primacy of responsiveness to the issues of the day through relationship. Our international fellowship began through the August 1914 handshake of Henry Hodgkin and Friedrich Siegmund-Schultze, who pledged to seek reconciliation with each other even though their countries were at war.
Does it make a sound? It’s an old philosophical question meant to have us explore basic issues of perception, reality and the nature of existence. I was asking myself something akin to this on my way to Washington D.C. for the “Reject and Protect” rally to protest against the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.
This past Friday I went up to a Unitarian Church here in Manhattan to take part in a series of interviews for a film project of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, which is about to celebrate its 100th anniversary — Virginia Baron had been there just before me, and Leslie Cagan was arriving as I left. The chances are good I may have been, at 84, the oldest of those interviewed.
As A.E.(George Russell) wrote in The Avatars, “Ares is the only god who repeats himself. The warrior mind in heaven as on earth is devoid of imagination. Was there ever clearer evidence of flagging invention than in the Russian revolution following the French?