Prevent War on Iran
AND on the U.S. Constitution
A conference exploring how we can
induce our federal government to:
Abide by the Constitution,
Honor the Truth, &
Serve the People
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Scott Ritter, center, was the first American, and
also the first non-governmental speaker, to
address Iraq's National Assembly
Joseph Gerson shown addressing the
World Conference against A- and H-Bombs
DATE AND TIMES:
Saturday, October 18, 2008, 9 AM to 5 PM
PLACE: Susan B. Anthony Building of Berkshire Community College (BCC)
1350 West St., Pittsfield, MA
REGISTRATION: 8:30 to 9:00 AM
8:30-9:00 AM Registration and music by Mountain Laurel (EVENT TO BEGIN PROMPTLY AT 9:00 AM)
9:00-9:15 Opening remarks and introduction of Scott Ritter
9:15-10:15* “Iran, Preemptive War, and the Constitution,” Scott Ritter
10:30-11:30* “Waging Peace and Defending the Constitution,” Scott Ritter
11:30-11:40 Formation of discussion groups
11:40-12:20 PM Discussion groups – 1st session
12:20-1:10 Lunch - Attendees may purchase lunch in the BCC cafeteria or bring their own
1:10-1:25 Music by Mountain Laurel and introduction of Joseph Gerson
Its Consequences, and the Search for Peace in a 'Post-American World',”
2:30-3:10 Discussion groups – 2nd session
3:15-3:45 Discussion group clerks’ reports**
3:45-3:50 Introduction of panel members and format
3:50-4:50* Plenary Panel (Scott Ritter, Joseph Gerson, Brian Corr, & Joe Lombardo)
4:50-5:00 Closing & announcements
*Includes time for Q&A
**An electronic composite report will be made available for attendees after the conference
PRIMARY SPEAKERS: Scott Ritter and Joseph Gerson.
Scott Ritter was a U.S. Marine for twelve years. Following his Marine Corps stint he served in various intelligence roles, including one as a chief UN weapons inspector in Iraq in the 1990's. Prior to the 2003 invasion, he correctly predicted that there would be no usable weapons of mass destruction found in Iraq. He said UNSCOM had verified the elimination of 95% of Iraq's WMDs in the 1990's, that there was no longer a nuclear program, and that, if any chemical or biological weapons were discovered following an invasion, they would be found to have degraded to a point of uselessness.
In both August and September of this year Mr. Ritter will be traveling to Iran. On another occasion before the conference, he will meet with several Nobel Peace Prize winners on the subject of avoiding war with Iran, a topic on which he has written a book, Target Iran. He has also written: Waging Peace - The Art of War for the Antiwar Movement, a fascinating and challenging account of how techniques used by the military can instead be used in the pursuit of peace. Amazon's customer-reviewers have given Waging Peace an average rating of 4 1/2 stars (out of a possible 5). Barnes & Noble's reader-reviewers give the book a similar high grade.
Doing a web search on "Scott Ritter" will provide many links to articles with information about him, including a lengthy article on Wikipedia. One interesting link to open is http://www.grassrootspeace.org/iraqritter.html which has the full text of Mr. Ritter's September 8, 2002, address to Iraq's National Assembly. Another good link is http://www.time.com/time/pow/article/0,8599,350809,00.html which is an article Time printed back on September 13, 2002, when Mr. Ritter was Time's "Person of the Week." For a link pointing to some of Mr. Ritter's more recent work, go to http://www.mostlyfiction.com/adventure/ritter.htm which has both a short biography of Mr. Ritter and a lengthy review of his 2007 book, Waging Peace.
Joseph Gerson is Program Director for the American Friends Service Committee in Cambridge, MA. He has written numerous books on global affairs and has traveled widely in the Middle East and elsewhere. He is familiar with Scott Ritter's sentiments and likewise aspires to the goals of warding off war with Iran and creating a more effective peace movement able to induce our government to abide by the Constitution, honor the truth and serve the people. However, his many years of experience working with AFSC have led him to somewhat different views on strategies and tactics from those of Mr. Ritter.
For an up-to-date biographical sketch of Dr. Gerson, click here. For another article which includes lists of his many books and articles, major speaking engagements, important honors received, and major events and campaigns he has organized, go to http://www.endusmilitarism.org/Gerson_bio_with_lists.html
PLENARY PANEL MEMBERS (In addition to Scott Ritter and Joseph Gerson)
has been the Executive Director of the Cambridge Peace
Commission in the City of Cambridge, Massachusetts, since April 2008. Prior to
coming to Cambridge, he was the field organizer for the ACLU of Massachusetts.
Brian started working as an activist while at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and has been in Boston since 1987. He has been involved in a wide range of efforts, from electoral campaigns, to Jobs with Justice, to Technology for Social Change, to the American Civil Liberties Union. He serves as President of the Fair Economy Action Fund and is a member of the national board of directors of the American Friends Service Committee. He stepped down from his position as co-chair of the national board of directors of Peace Action in December 2007.
You can learn a lot more about Brian Corr at http://www.briancorr.org/about.html
is a founding member of Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace, and
serves on its coordinating committee. He is also a founding member of the
Muslim Solidarity Committee, formed to defend two Muslim men in Albany who were
framed by the FBI.
Recently, Mr. Lombardo helped organize the National Assembly in Cleveland Ohio. The National Assembly was a large conference of anti-war activists with the goal of bringing national unity to the diverse sections of the anti-war movement. He is a member of the Continuations Body that was formed by the conference.
During the Vietnam War Mr. Lombardo was a full time staff person for the National Peace Action Coalition, one of the two major anti-war coalitions during that period.
Fees to defray expenses are: Regular $10.00, Seniors $8.00, Students $5.00
Attendees may either
purchase lunch in the BCC cafeteria or bring their own lunch.
BECAUSE OF ITS HELPFULNESS TO US IN PREPARATION, NOTICE OF YOUR INTENTION TO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED!!!
TO NOTIFY US OF YOUR
PLAN TO ATTEND, OR
FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:
P.O. Box 2035
Pittsfield, MA 01202
Don or Merry Lathrop
Tel.: 518-781-4681 (h)
Conference sponsored by:
Global Issues Resource Organization (GIRO) of Berkshire Community College
Berkshire Citizens for Peace and Justice (BCP&J)
Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace (BNP)