HUMAN SHIELDS: FROM BAGHDAD TO PORTLAND
TUESDAY, APRIL 29
Vollum Lecture Hall, 7:00 PM
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 30
Lewis & Clark College
Olin Center Rm. 301, 4:30 PM
Benjamin Joffe-Walt, who recently returned from Iraq as a peaceworker with "Human Shields Iraq," will lecture and lead a multimedia presentation on the effects of U.S. policies and actions in Iraq, and on peace and anti-war groups in Baghdad.
Benjamin Joffe-Walt, a high school history teacher in Toronto, was a main organizer of "Human Shields" and one of the few U.S. citizens that participated in the "Human Shields" action. He spent three weeks away from teaching to place himself as a volunteer human shield in Baghdad. He was the first from the group to attempt to re-enter the U.S, and is also one of only two openly Jewish members of the Human Shields group. He also works as a seasonal wildland firefighter in Oregon. He says about the experience, "Acting as a Human Shield is just one of the many forms of protest that need to happen to intervene in a cycle of violence led by our country and driven much more by the economic interests of a few than by a safe and non-violent vision of the world. Yes, it is scary, but I am not going to live my life in fear of my own government imprisoning me for expressing disagreement with violence."
Human Shields is an international anti-war group of people from around the world placing themselves in areas of importance to Iraqi civilian life such as schools, hospitals, and water treatment plants, to act as a deterrent to military attack on civilians. Founded by a former US Marine and Gulf War veteran, the action has attracted volunteers of all ages and backgrounds.
Reed Student Peace Action Network
Lewis and Clark Organization for Peace and Politics