Citizen Activism –U.S. Boat to Gaza
Speakers: Col. (Ret.) Ann Wright & Dr. Carol Murry
Time: 6 – 8PM
Date: Thursday, Sept. 1, 2011
Place: Keaau Community Center
The presentation is free and open to the public.
The 2011 Gaza Freedom Flotilla’s US boat “The Audacity of Hope” attempted to carry support letters to the people of Gaza. It, along with other international humanitarian boats, were blocked by military commandos from leaving Greece. Ann Wright and Carol Murry (both Hawaii residents) were aboard the Audacity of Hope Boat.
Ann has just returned from Korea’s Jeju Island where citizens are working hard to prevent their designated “Island of Peace,” called “Korea’s Hawaii,” from being used for a proposed Naval base.
Come hear Ann and Carol, and talk together about these issues. Let us inspire and activate one another to stand up for justice, peace, and the earth.
Ann is a retired Army Colonel and State Department diplomat. Carol has a doctorate in Public Health and was on the faculty of the University of Hawaii.
Sponsored by: Malu ‘Aina Center For Non-violent Education & Action
P.O. Box AB Kurtistown, Hawaii 96760. Phone 808-966-7622 email firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit us on the web at www.malu-aina.org
Ann Wright holds a Master’s and a law degree from the University of Arkansas and a master’s degree in national security affairs from the U.S. Naval War College. She spent 13 years in the U.S. Army and 16 additional years in the Army Reserves, retiring as a Colonel.
In 1987, Col. Ann Wright joined the Foreign Service and served as U.S. Deputy Ambassador in Sierra Leone, Micronesia, Afghanistan, and Mongolia. She received the State Department’s Award for Heroism for her actions during the evacuation of 2,500 people from the civil war in Sierra Leone, the largest evacuation since Saigon. She was on the first State Department team to go into Afghanistan and reopen the Embassy there in December 2001. Her other overseas assignments include Mongolia, Somalia, Kyrgyzstan, Grenada, Micronesia, and Nicaragua.
After her distinguished 16 years in the Foreign Service, on March 19, 2003, the eve of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Ann Wright cabled a letter of resignation to Secretary of State Colin Powell, stating that without the authorization of the UN Security Council, the invasion and occupation of a Muslim, Arab, oil-rich country would be a disaster.
Since then, she has been writing and speaking out for peace. She fasted for a month, picketed at Guantánamo, served as a juror in impeachment hearings, and has been arrested numerous times for peaceful, nonviolent protest. She is an activist for peace and human rights who participated in the Gaza Freedom March and the the Gaza aid Flotillas of 2010 and 2011.
Ann’s home is in Honolulu. She is the co-author of the book “Dissent: Voices of Conscience” (www.voicesofconscience.com).
Carol Murry lived and worked in rural Thailand and Swaziland; started a community health worker program on Micronesian outer islands; did leprosy research in eastern Bhutan; directed non-profit organizations with a focus on leprosy, HIV/AIDS, and community health; was University of Hawai’i faculty; and recently researched and authored publications on risk and vulnerability to HIV/AIDS among Pacific Island youth for UNICEF.
She has a doctorate in public health and masters in epidemiology from the University of Hawai’i, but considers her true education in health was as a Peace Corps Volunteer in a Bengali village hospital with no electricity, running water, or bathrooms.
During the time the Israelis were building the wall separating Gaza farmers from their orchards and dividing families, an Israeli friend, who volunteered at Malu ‘Aina, made the plight of the Gaza people so vivid that she could not look away. The parallels with the apartheid system in South Africa during the time she was in Swaziland were inescapable.
A presentation by Ann Wright on her return from the first Freedom Flotilla inspired Carol’s application to join the 2011 Freedom Flotilla. She was honored to stand up with Ann Wright and the other passengers and leaders of the US Boat to Gaza in the determination that freedom, justice and peace must come to Gaza and the refusal to sit down until it does.
Carol’s home is in Honolulu.