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Express - Our Way Home goes for second round

Second annual Our Way Home Peace Event & Reunion being planned for summer of 2007

By Susan Hollis

Published: October 18, 2006

After last summer's success, Our Way Home Peace Event & Reunion organizers have decided to take another stab at harnessing some of the world's most passionate peace and anti-war activists. Conference organizer Isaac Romano decided to continue the event after receiving major public support from both the local and international community.

"It was so enormously successful, and had such a huge impact on the people coming, I think we're likely to see close to double of the numbers of local people next year," he said. "There were also so many people that contacted me during the event who were saddened that they hadn't heard about it before hand."

The mandate of the reunion is to promote non-violent solutions to international strive while helping support and heal military deserters and veterans. According to Romano, the current state of world politics proves an urgent need for events like the reunion.

"We live in a period where there is a terrific amount of militarism in the world, including Canada's participation militarily in the fighting in Afghanistan, so it's actually an important time, and an important model, for those war resisters that came to Canada and established their lives and raised their families and contributed so much," he said. "They're really a model of non-violence at a time when we should be looking for non-violent solutions to conflicts, so that is an added reason to do it right now."

Of last year's speakers, Rabbi Michael Learner, Arun Gandhi and Tom Hayden will return, in addition to new keynote speaker Daniel Ellsberg, a well-known foreign policy analyst and peace activist.

Romano is planning a major panel discussion on foreign policy that will bring together major political leaders from Canada and the U.S. The conference will also inaugurate a new international war resister's organization called 'War Resisters of Foreign Wars.'

"One of the things that will be revealed further from this institute is the true nature, and great misunderstanding of what happens when we send our men and women to war, and that's that they get deeply, deeply hurt by being thrown into combat, and that hurt gets recycled in society, which is another reason to look for non-violent solutions to conflicts," said Romano.

To reach the Our Way Home office, call 352-1187 or go to the new website at www. ourwayhomereunion.com.