CPNN (Culture of Peace News Network) bulletin of July 1, 2020

THE STRUGGLE AGAINST RACISM

This was a month of the reactivated struggle against racism.

It started in the United States with an uprising described as a “collective gasp for life” by the Poor People’s Campaign which continues the struggle for justice led by Martin Luther KIng, Jr. Their phrase refers to the last words of George Floyd, choked and killed by a white police officer “viscerally reminiscent of the lynching photographs that were used to terrorize African-Americans for decades in this nation.”

Excessive force by the police, condemned by fundamental international human rights law and standards, is commonplace in the United States according to a recent study.

As described by Reuters, “tens of thousands of demonstrators amassed in Washington and other U.S. cities on Saturday [June 6] demanding an end to racism and brutality by law enforcement.” ““It feels like I get to be a part of history and a part of the group of people who are trying to change the world for everyone,” said one of the demonstrators.

Thousands took to the streets in Europeen and Asian cities demonstrating in support of the U.S. protests against police brutality, including London, Hamburg, Paris, Berlin, Brisbane, Sydney, Tokyo, Seoul and Bangkok,

The demonstrations in Australia linked the protest to the racist treatment of the aboriginal people in their country, where 432 aboriginals have died in police custody since 1991 without a single conviction. The racism is especially evident in the destruction of Aboriginal heritage sites for development projects. “The NSW Office of the Environment and Heritage shows that between June 2012 and June 2013 there were over 99 applications for the destruction of Aboriginal heritage sites for development purposes – all of which were approved.”

Central to the demonstrations has been the movement of Black Lives Matter, started in 2013 by three radical Black organizers — Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi — in response to the acquittal of the murderer of 17 year old Trayvon Martin. Their project is now a member-led global network of more than 40 chapters that organize and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes.

As described by historian Robiin D. G. Kelley, in addition to Black Lives Matter, there have been many organizing efforts that have built a base for today’s protests. “These include people like Melina Abdullah, Charlene Carruthers of Black Youth Project 100, all the scholar activists who have been working on this question — Barbara Ransby, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Angela Davis, Ruth Wilson Gilmore — and then, before that, the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, Copwatch, Dignity and Power, Critical Resistance, the African American Policy Forum. These were initiatives on the ground who did all this political education, all this organizing work — We Charge Genocide, Dream Defenders, the Rising Majority, Black Organizing for Leadership and Dignity, and also groups like SURJ, you know, [Showing] Up for Racial Justice, which deals with white racism.”

Kelly concludes his interview with “And the real question now is whether or not this can be sustained.”

One of the means to sustain the movement is the mobilization in many U.S. communities and organizations to celebrate Juneteenth, the anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation of Abraham Lincoln to put an end to slavery. It is now recognized in 47 states and the District of Columbia.

In the view of noted activist Cornel West, it is important to make the connection between U.S. violence abroad and at home. “When you sow the seeds of greed — domestically, inequality; globally, imperial tentacles, 800 military units abroad, violence and AFRICOM in Africa, supporting various regimes, dictatorial ones in Asia and so forth — there is a connection between the seeds that you sow of violence externally and internally.”

For more on the connection of racism to the culture of war, externally and internally, along with its historical roots, see this month’s blog for the culture of peace.

HUMAN RIGHTS


‘A part of history’: Calm prevails over D.C.’s biggest George Floyd protest

FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION

Decolonising peace journalism – and putting it to work in East Africa

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

Feeding the people in times of Pandemic: The Food Sovereignty Approach in Nicaragua

DEMOCRATIC PARTICIPATION

“Listening as governance”, by Amartya Sen

          

EDUCATION FOR PEACE

USA: Historian Robin D.G. Kelley: Years of Racial Justice Organizing Laid Groundwork for Today’s Uprising

WOMEN’S EQUALITY

Philippines: Women’s leadership in the time of pandemic

TOLERANCE & SOLIDARITY


USA: An uprising is a collective gasp for life

DISARMAMENT & SECURITY

Film From USA: Camden’s Turn: A Story of Police Reform in Progress

CPNN (Culture of Peace News Network) bulletin of June 1, 2020

LINK GLOBAL, EAT LOCAL

As we have seen in this bulletin in recent months, the global health and economic crisis has inspired many to envisage and prepare for radical change believing that “another world is possible.”

This month we feature two aspects of this movement: 1) towards local food production and consumption, known as food sovereignty; and 2) global rlinkage of activists via webinars and online courses and conferences. Hence a new variation on the old slogan that we should “Think global, act local.”

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CPNN (Culture of Peace News Network) bulletin of April 1, 2020

Overcoming the Crisis Together

Viewed from the perspective of the culture of peace, the medical and economic crisis associated with the coronavirus can be seen as an opportunity as well as a calamity.

As discussed in the blog Has the crash arrived ?, it may provide us with the opportunity to make the transition from the culture of war to a culture of peace ? The scenario was foreseen In the novella I have seen the promised land written in 2008 which foresaw a global economic crash in the year 2020, opening the possibility for this radical transformation.

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CPNN (Culture of Peace News Network) bulletin of March 1, 2020

Cities Take the Lead

Nuclear disarmament. New York City is becoming the most recent city to plan for divestment of their funds from the nuclear weapons industry. Public hearings in the city on January 28 heard from a wide range of speakers in favor of this action. Speakers included the global campaign, Move the Nuclear Weapons Money, Mayors for Peace, young peope from Peace Boat and a representrative from the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017. Participants at the hearing expressed their love of the city and strong unwillingness to see New York, or any other place on the Earth, to be exposed to the threat of irreversible destruction that nuclear weapons poses.

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CPNN (Culture of Peace News Network) bulletin of February 1, 2020

Military Swallows up THE AMERICAN BUDGET

Usually this bulletin puts the emphasis on positive actions that promote the culture of peace. But this month, it seems that the most important events were negative, and we need to look at them in detail.

In particular, the principal center of the American empire, the budget of the United States, is being almost completely swallowed up by military spending. Last month, the US congress, both Republicans and Democrats voted to adopt a military budget of $738 billion dollars.

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CPNN (Culture of Peace News Network) bulletin of October 1, 2019

The Pope and Culture of Peace

Pope Francis is committing the Catholic Church to nuclear disarmament, sustainable development and the rights of indigenous peoples, key components of the culture of peace.

Speaking in Hiroshima on November 23, he said that “The use of atomic energy for the purpose of war is today more than ever a crime not only against the dignity of human beings, but against any possible future for our common home.”

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Concert of the Peace 2019

The Peace Concert is the activity during which the FHB Foundation intends to bring together a larger number of people than previous concerts. It is a concert whose entrance will be free. It has planned to attract at least 15,000 spectators from the Yamoussoukro District, mainly young people to John Paul II Square for a show rich in sounds, images and lights with nearly 20 Ivorian artists and musical groups of international and national classes from 7pm to dawn on Friday, November 15, 2019, declared "National Day of Peace" by the State of Côte d'Ivoire.
There are four reasons for choosing Yamoussoukro:

  • it is the birthplace of the "Sage of Africa" and the political capital of Côte d'Ivoire,
  • it is the cradle of the concept of a culture of peace created 30 years ago at the International Congress organized by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) on the theme: "Peace in the minds of men", precisely from 26 June to 1 July 1989 at the headquarters of the FHB Foundation.
  • it is a tourist destination par excellence with its many assets in terms of hotels, gastronomy, living environment and history.
  • and finally it is a city with a high concentration of students with institutions of excellence such as the Lycée Scientifique and the Institut National Polytechnique Houphouët-Boigny (INPHB).

Indeed, the Autonomous District of Yamoussoukro has about 300,000 inhabitants, 56.46% of whom are less than 20 years old. Through this concert, we specifically target the younger generation, essentially the generation born after the death of President Houphouët-Boigny, namely young people under the age of 25. They are our core target. We want to make them better acquainted with this exceptional man, "builder of modern Côte d'Ivoire" and "Artisan of dialogue".