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



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The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be ... The nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists.
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



When safety, soil, health, water and a livable future are threatened, we must rise up in the tradition of Gandhi, MLK, and the Suffragettes and stand for what is just.

Non-Violent Direct Action Training
Saturday, June 4th
Frank Cordaro & Julie Brown
First Presbyterian Church—2701 Rochester Avenue, Iowa City
Registration: 9:30 am to 10:00 am
Program: 10:00 am to 2:30 pm

Bring your own bag lunch and your reusable water bottle.
To Pre-Register: Contact Dawn Jones, (3l9) 646—67l2
Please use the upper parking lot on East side of the church.

Definition: Nonviolent action uses techniques outside of institutionalized behavior for social change that challenges an unjust power dynamic using methods of protest, noncooperation, and intervention without the use or threat of injurious force. In essence, people turn to nonviolent direct action after the institutionalized ways of settling injustices are unsuccessful. (Please note: There are many non-arrestable supportive roles that are essential in any ANVDA)

Paul Frank Cordaro, a former Roman Catholic priest, is a peace activist and co-founder of the Des Moines, Iowa Catholic Worker group. He frequently gives lectures, attends protests and leads trainings on Civil Disobedience, also known as "Arrestable Non-Violent Direct Action (ANVDA)." Over a 40 yr span Frank has been arrested hundreds of times and has served a total of 6 years of jail time for his peace and justice actions.

Julie Brown is a Des Moines Catholic Worker and a member of the Christian Peace Team (CPT) in Kurdistan Iraq. Julie's activism started with the Occupy Wall Street movement in Des Moines over four years ago. She joined the Catholic Worker in Des Moines and has done peace work in the West Bank of Palestine. She is slated to return to Iraq mid-June. She is schooled in nonviolent activism both in the US and abroad.

Training is brought to you by 100Grannies for a Livable Future

Please call or email with questions or comments and please register with Dawn.

Dawn Jones
(3l9) 646—67l2

Debra Dee
(3l9) 354—5428

Miriam Kashia
(3l9) 459—ll54

This workshop is FREE but donations are gratefully accepted.

Berrigan Brothers burning draft records
Berrigan brothers, Philip and Daniel, are shown burning draft records in May, 1968.

"Our apologies, good friends, for the fracture of good order, the burning of paper instead of children, the angering of the orderlies in the front parlor of the charnel house. We could not, so help us God, do otherwise." — Daniel Berrigan, about the burning of three hundred A-1 draft files in Catonsville, Maryland, on May 17th, 1968 in a protest against the Vietnam war.

More ...

CBC interview with Martin Sheen

Democracy Now! interviews at memorial


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.



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Old Brick
26 East Market Street, Iowa City, Iowa 52245
We are open 12:15 to 4:00 pm on Wednesdays
& 1:00 to 3:00 pm on Thursdays


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