PEACEIowa—the Iowa City peace center
Peace Education and Action Center



Thinking about enlisting in the military?

Military recruiters and ads promise a lot. Before you join, take a good look at what you're getting into.

Click here for points to consider before you sign a Military Enlistment Agreement—PDF


True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar. ... an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

PLEASE NOTE: PEACE Iowa is operated by volunteers. If a volunteer is absent due to illness or bad weather, PEACE Iowa might not be open during regular office hours. We apologize for any inconvenience and ask for your understanding. Thank you!


Fall 2015 newsletter
PEACE Iowa Fall 2015 Newsletter


Past event announcements



Promoting international peace
through education,
intercultural communication, public witness,
citizen involvement, and personal choices


Phyllis Bennis
Phyllis Bennis — enlarge

"You don't kill ISIS when you destroy the city they rule — you drive them out. You may kill dozens or scores or hundreds even. But you don't kill the organization. They go away. They run away, and they pop up somewhere else. So you're playing whack-a-mole. What we've seen in the last year is that, every time there's a major defeat from ISIS on the ground, you end up very soon after that seeing an escalation in old-style terrorist attacks. So the attack in Paris was right after the so-called liberation of Ramadi. The Istanbul Airport was right after Fallujah. It's a response to the loss of territory. It's saying to their followers and to the world, we're still here. You can't kill us that way. Because you can't kill terrorism. You can kill terrorists — mostly you don't. Mostly you kill — about 90 percent are other people not terrorists — but you know if you do it long enough and drop enough bombs, you're going to kill a bunch of terrorists. That doesn't end terrorism." —Phyllis Bennis, July 2016
Q&A: Middle East Expert Points to Clinton Funding and Never-Ending War

— BRITAIN EAKIN in — July 20th, 2016


Ending the Violence
and Opening our Hearts to Refugees

by Ann Stromquist
President of PEACE Iowa

My heart goes out to the families and friends of those who have lost their lives in the recent attacks in Paris, as well as those in Beirut, Baghdad, the Russian plane, and elsewhere. I abhor the violence perpetrated by ISIS. I can understand the fear that this violence engenders in those who imagine such attacks in our own country. I can understand that an immediate response by some is to want to seek revenge.

When we are angry it’s usually good to stop and take a deep breath before we act. We must take a very deep breath - now - in the face of two huge challenges that our country faces:

  • How do we respond to the increasing violence perpetrated by ISIS?
  • How do we respond to the humanitarian crisis in Syria and the families - children, women, and men - who are fleeing a civil war in their country as well as violence by ISIS?

Do we really believe that more bombing will destroy ISIS? Do we really believe that more bombing will create stability in Syria and the rest of the Middle East? Do we really believe that more bombing will create more security in our own country?

Isn’t it true that our actions in the Middle East have only served as recruitment tools for ISIS? And to further destabilize the region? Have we learned anything from our involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan, countries that are LESS stable and LESS secure as a result of our intervention?

When we bomb an ISIS “target,” we bomb civilians, sometimes those attending a wedding, sometimes those praying in their mosque, sometimes those in their own homes. As we increase our violent response we assist ISIS in their recruitment of young, angry people who blame the United States for its role in supporting (and providing weapons to) authoritarian regimes. ISIS gains in membership only increase the instability and insecurity in Syria and elsewhere, and as instability and insecurity increase, ISIS gains volunteers. A vicious cycle.

We must STOP and THINK before we ACT. How can we work to end the violence in the Middle East and in Syria in particular?

The United States must do all it can to break the cycle of violence – STOP OUR OWN VIOLENT RESPONSES! – and address the causes of instability and violence by working with all parties in the region, as well as the international community, toward political solutions that take into consideration the needs of people for jobs and security.

The other challenge we face is the escalating refugee crisis precipitated by the civil war in Syria. We must welcome families who are fleeing the violence. We must allow ourselves to “walk a mile in their shoes” and imagine how we would want our families to be treated if we were fleeing violence and seeking refuge in another country. Let us do the right thing, what we know in our hearts is right, and welcome Syrian refugees into our communities. Let us call upon our representatives in Congress to ease the humanitarian crisis and act generously. Let us call upon our governor to reverse his cruel rejection of helping to resettle Syrian refugees in Iowa. And let us call upon our representatives in the State Legislature and our municipal governments to continue Iowa’s tradition of welcoming strangers to our midst. If we do so, we will be a better community, state, and nation.

First appeared in the Iowa City Press-Citizen on December 4, 2015.


Ideas from PEACE Iowa members ...



Peace Worker of the Month



1/1/2007 candle light vigil
Thanks to Rose & Peter Persaud for this photo of the January 1, 2007
Iowa City vigil mourning the Iraq War dead—3000 U.S. soldiers and many more Iraqi civilians.



Check Google Page Rank    Copyright © 2016 PEACE Iowa —  65,952 page views since 4/30/2011 


Old Brick
26 East Market Street, Iowa City, Iowa 52245
We are open 12:15 to 4:00 pm on Wednesdays
& 12:00-1:30 pm on Thursdays


Initializing ...


tab * hover
» » hover