March 14, 2003 - PCOL Exclusive: Second Ad of RPCVs opposing War in Iraq runs in NY Times

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Headlines: Peace Corps Headlines - 2003: 03 March 2003 Peace Corps Headlines: March 14, 2003 - PCOL Exclusive: Second Ad of RPCVs opposing War in Iraq runs in NY Times

By Admin1 (admin) on Friday, March 14, 2003 - 10:45 am: Edit Post

Second Ad of RPCVs opposing War in Iraq runs in NY Times





The second half page advertisement from RPCVs who oppose war in Iraq ran on March 14 on page A21 in the National section of The New York Times. Their first half page ad ran in the New York Times on February 21. Over 1800 RPCVs contributed to the ad. Congratulations to Collin Tong, members of Thailand 24, and to the thousands of RPCVs who showed that Returned Volunteers can organize at the grass roots level and make their views known on a national issue that they believe in. Read PCOL's exclusive coverage of the EPIC campaign and how it evolved at:

Second Advertisement runs in New York Times*

* This link was active on the date it was posted. PCOL is not responsible for broken links which may have changed.



Second Advertisement runs in New York Times

The second advertisement from RPCVs who oppose war in Iraq ran on March 14, on page A21 in the National section of The New York Times. Over 1800 RPCVs contributed to the ad.

The first advertisement from RPCVs who oppose war in Iraq ran on February 21, on page A22 in the National section of The New York Times. Over 1400 RPCVs contributed to that ad.

PCOL has been following the history of the ad campaign since they began in mid-January. Here is how the campaign evolved.

For several weeks beginning in mid-January, Collin Tong and his Thailand 24 RPCV network sent out hundreds of messages to NPCA and RPCV listservs across the country.

The original email said they were going to run a full page ad in the New York Times and that the ad would cost $40,000 to run as a standby. By January 29, the group had raised $7,500 toward that goal.

On January 30, EPIC announced that after consulting with several Thailand 24 and Seattle RPCV colleagues, they had decided to revise their campaign goal for the NY Times ad. As donations stood -- they were close to $9,000 at that point and at the rate contributions were coming in (the average donations have been under $50), they believed that the earlier goal of raising $40,000 for a full-page ad might now be unrealistic and were looking at a more achievable goal of a half-page, horizontal ad (cost: $23,700). They were redoing the web-site "barometer" and setting a target date of Feb. 10th to raise the $23,700.

On February 3, they announced on their web site that they had raised $13,500, that their goal was to raise $23,700 by Feb. 10 to place a 1/2 page ad on "stand-by," by February 15 and that any funds over the expenses mentioned would go toward the other advocacy efforts by EPIC in Washington D.C.

On February 3, PCOL ran a story about the group and their advertisement in our monthly newsletter and sent it out to 30,000 RPCVs on our mailing list and at that point contributions took off. Just one day later, on February 4 the EPIC web site announced that the group had reached their goal of $23,700 to place their half-page ad and that additional contributions would help support other EPIC advocacy efforts and initiatives to further their message.

On February 6, the EPIC web site announced that now they were tentatively considering going for the full page ad again but that would mean raising over $3,400/day for the next 3 days and there are serious logistical problems to overcome.

Later on February 6, they announced that that due to the overwhelming response the campaign has received in the past few days they were in the process of reassessing their goals, and that included whether or not to run a second 1/2 page ad to accommodate additional names.

On February 7, the EPIC web site announced that due to the overwhelming response in the last week, they had decided to run two half-page ads in the New York Times. The first ad would be submitted to the New York Times next Monday, Feb. 10th and would run as a stand-by ad on the first available date. The second ad would follow in the first week of March and that once they had reached their goal of $47,400 for both ads, they would officially conclude the campaign.

The first ad ran on February 21 in page A 22 in the National section of The New York Times. Over 1400 RPCVs contributed to the ad.

On February 21 the National Peace Corps Association, (NPCA) mentioned the campaign for the first time in an email from Anne Baker that said
"Today's New York Times includes an ad sponsored by and paid for by Returned Peace Corps Volunteers for a Better World in partnership with the Education for Peace for Iraq Center. The ad, entitled "Returned Peace Corps Volunteers Oppose War in Iraq" appears on page A23.
On February 27, Collin Tong, one of the leaders of the campaign to publish two half pages ads in the New York Times published an exclusive story in PCOL on how the the campaign was put together.

On March 13, the Board of Directors of the NPCA passed their own resolution on the War in Iraq. The resolution calls on the US Government to renew its commitment to effective international inspections to identify and eliminate weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and continue to work in concert with the United Nations to solve the Iraqi crisis, if possible without resorting to force, but in any case seeking the broadest possible mandate from the Security Council.


Our Statement: Returned Peace Corps Volunteers Oppose War in Iraq



See Ed. Note below regarding a revision in text for second ad.

Since President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps in 1961, more than 165,000 individuals have served in 136 countries around the world as Peace Corps Volunteers.

The current administration is threatening a preemptive strike against Iraq, the first in our nationís history. As former Peace Corps Volunteers who have worked to promote understanding between Americans and the peoples of other countries, we call upon our president and other elected leaders to resist the temptation of war.

A U.S. military invasion of Iraq would cause the deaths of thousands of Iraqi civilians, put more than one million children at risk of dying from malnutrition1, and heighten political tensions in the Middle East. It would, in fact, pose a grave danger to people around the globe.

We, the undersigned Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, refuse to condone any U.S. policy of unilateral military action against Iraq.

Moreover, we call upon our fellow Americans to join with us in supporting a peaceful resolution of the current situation -- one that is respectful of the United Nations, the Iraqi people, and international law.

This ad is sponsored by Returned Peace Corps Volunteers for a Better World in partnership with EPIC.

(1) "Integrated Humanitarian Contingency Plan for Iraq and Neighbouring Countries" 1-07-03 UN Report

[ Ed. Note: To help underscore the urgency of the message and the humanitarian crisis that a preemptive military strike in Iraq would engender their was a slight revision to the statement (in hypertext above). This text replaced the line "create an unprecedented humanitarian crisis in Iraq". The source of this figure is a recently issued report by the UN (see footnote/link above). All the names of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, or RPCV's, who have signed the above statement would follow here, including the photo above of Iraqi children by Bob Haynes. The ad posted above is much as the second ad will appear.
More about What RPCVs say about War with Iraq



Read more about What RPCVs say about War with Iraq at:


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This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Thailand; Advocacy; War with Iraq

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By Terry Adcock Colombia 61-63 on Friday, March 14, 2003 - 8:16 pm: Edit Post

If you agree with the Statement by the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers for a Better World I hope you will sign up to show your support. While it is too late to have your name on the ad in the New York Times, it is not too late to sign.

To do so, go to:
http://epic-usa.org/rpcv/addname.php

It is also not too late to take part in the Global Vigal for Peace Sunday night (March 16, 2003 -- 7:00PM): http://www.moveon.org/vigil/index.html

So far, 3953 vigils have been scheduled in 110 countries. Beginning in New Zealand, there will be a rolling wave of candlelight gatherings that will quickly cross the globe.

I hope the readers of this message will take part in the vigil in their city or town.

Together, we can lead the nations of the world away from an unnecessary war and toward a peaceful and prosperous future.


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