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Syria, Iraq and ISIS: Understanding the New War. How Should the Peace Movement Respond?
Wed December 10, 2014 @ 7:00 pm EST
o Prof. Elaine Hagopian on understanding the war
o Activist views on the peace movement’s response
o Discussion on what to do next
The US announced early in November that troop deployment in the war against ISIS will be doubled from 1500 to 3000 — although they are supposedly not “boots on the ground.” Meanwhile, thousands of air sorties have been flown and the Obama administration is again asking Congress for billions to fund a new war. But US allies are reluctant to commit resources, Turkey regards the Kurds as the greater threat and Saudi Arabia is privately providing ISIS aid. The US is battling to overthrow Assad in Syria while also fighting his enemy. Contacts are made with Iran — but we don’t really want to coordinate efforts. Beheadings rouse demands for action.
The US claims its only goal is to defeat ISIS but the long term goal has not changed: regime change in Syria and continued domination over the region made unstable by years of US intervention. The prospect of a long and escalating war confronts us. What is our message in this complex and contradictory situation?
Elaine Hagopian, professor emeritus of sociology at Simmons College, will provide background and context on Syria, referencing Palestine and Iraq. Cole Harrison, executive director of Mass Peace Action, and Marilyn Levin, co-coordinator of United National Antiwar Coalition, will offer different views on the peace movement’s response.
Elaine Hagopian is a retired professor of sociology from Simmons College, Boston. She served as visiting professor of sociology at the American University in Beirut, and as a distinguished Lecturer at the American University of Cairo. She was awarded two Fulbright Hays Faculty research grants to do research in France and the Arab region. She served with UNCIEF in the United Arab Emirates; and as part of a UNESCO team to do a feasibility study for a Palestine Open University. Her publications focus on Arab regional issues and on Arab-Americans; her article “Bashar Assad’s Missed Opportunity: Syria’s Pandoran Box” appeared in Counterpunch in June 2011.
$5 donation requested
Sponsored by United for Justice with Peace