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Obama on Peace Corps

Given that I am tuned in and turned on to the creation of a Global Peace Corps, my sensitive ears caught the mention of the possible expansion of the Peace Corps during the second presidential debate.

There are so many young people working energetically during this unprecedented political process, as well as those around the globe following on their televisions, cell phones, laptops, the internet, that it would be effective and efficient for the United States to consider revisiting the existing, unidirectional Peace Corps, and promote the establishment of a Global, multidirectional, Peace or Youth Corps and leave PEACE FOOTPRINTS across the globe.

For example, youth from the USA could consider as usual spending time in any country – not only in the developing countries as is with the current Peace Corps, but in other countries in this globalizing world where issues are becoming broader than developing vs developed country challenges.

Moreover, disparities in the world should no longer be consider rural vs urban.  They should be looked at in terms of eco-zones where behaviours are culled depending on habitats – mountain, forests, deserts, plains, small island states – and because of the environmental challenges faced by theses ecozones, their people are descending on the urban areas in droves – urban areas which are becoming “more harmonious and sustainable” and which are acting like magnets for those from not necessarily the “rural” areas, but from these specific habitats with urban areas built in.

A dramatic example of challenges faced by people in the various ecozones was seen in 2007, where a pygmy chief from the forests in the Central African Republic and his posse descended on the World Bank to make a claim for people to stop cutting down the trees in his habitat.  Indigenous populations are most at risk when their habitats are attacked- some joint venture with logging companies click here

The US will not be alone in this –“Let us change the world, together” said Gordon Brown at the end of a riveting speech on globalization at the Clinton Global Initiative.


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Comments on: "Obama on Peace Corps" (3)

  1. I just finished reading your blog about the Corps and thought you might be interested in two articles posted today on CampusProgress.org, which focus on similar topics. I find it is very hard for the media to pay enough attention on this very important topic.Campus Progress is the youth arm of the Center for American Progress, a Washington, DC-based nonpartisan research and educational institute dedicated to promoting a strong, just and free America that ensures opportunity for all.

    The first article is written by a former Peace Corps volunteer, Adam Welti, and deals with modern day problems facing the Corps, such as drops in enrollment and questions about its effectiveness. He proposes doubling the size and budget of the Peace Corps to boost the it’s standing around the world, while making the argument that the U.S. has a vested homeland security interest in trying to bolster peace keeping missions abroad (http://www.campusprogress.org/fieldreport/3273/reevaluating-the-peace-corps).

    Celia Segel’s article focuses on efforts from foreign aid experts and various members of Congress to streamline the United States’ international aid agencies, which have recently been scrutnized for becoming an inefficient bureacracy, into one centralized agency (http://www.campusprogress.org/cribsheets/3272/changing-the-bureaucracy-to-organize-international-service).

    If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me.


    Andrew Rosen

  2. Andrew let us keep in touch – muriella

  3. Andrew (Jay) Bell said:

    Adam’s sentiments are great, double the Peace
    Corps and its budget. But the problem is that that policy is only half the story, maybe not even half. What has to happen is to recognize that the Peace Corps needs a transfusion. This should accompany a hard look at the relevancy of the Peace Corps to the world today as opposed to the world of 1961. Things have changed, immensely. The Peace Corps is still important and has made a great impact on the world’s respect for us. Yet it is still based on the emotions and the political facts of life in the 60s. And in the process it has become dull and inintentionally irrelevant. This is in no way disrespectful to all the Volunteers who have served as honorably as our courageous military folks. I know this because I have been a member or both, the Peace Corps and the military. What the Peace Corps needs now is a period of creative and imaginative leadership who will modernize the Peace Corps and inject a major dose of creative and imaginative juices into it. Doubling the Peace Corps and doubling the budget is,without making some of the other changes in the Peace Corps process, is or will be expensively futile. But lets answer these questions first: What exactly is the Peace Corps mission now, in 2008?. Are the original three principles still the guiding principles. If they are still relevant, are we gong about achieving them in the right way for the world of 2008? And the big question is can we and should we be everywhere in the world or should we step back and review our moral and political responsibility to the real third world, in again, the world of 2008. Andrew Jay Bell

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