“I moved from feeling hesitant to invite a World BEYOND War speaker into my classroom into an enthusiastic supporter of inviting World BEYOND War every year into my class. As is the case for most of us teachers, my students are incredibly patriotic and have a narrow view of history that teaches that war is necessary and good. I was not sure if my students would turn their ears off if someone suggested that all of America’s wars were not glorious, but the opposite happened. Mr. Swanson’s rational and well supported approach opened minds. Students asked great questions and a lively discussion ensued. In the end, students could see why war was irrational and even more importantly, their minds were opened to imagine different solutions to real problems.”
Katherine MurphyTeacher of Ethics and Social Justice, Gonzaga High School, Washington, D.C.
"I have invited Ms. Kathy Kelly twice to talk to our students. Both of the times, the experience was one of the best. Ms. Kelly shared her first-hand experience about the U.S. Sanctions on Iraq and what she had seen and witnessed first-hand from people who were dying due to the sanctions. Ms. Kelly stated "Where you stand, determines what you see". This quote is not only used in my class every time we meet, but it became the slogan that we go by looking for the truth. Here is what my students thought of Kathy: "What stands out the most to me was Kathy Kelly's ability to place her safety aside to help others and how she stands up for what she sees as injustice." Another student mentioned "after hearing her speak, it really puts into perspective the immense care and intention she carried with her during her efforts to help the people of Iraq during the sanctions." With every meeting, we learn a great deal of care, kindness, and how to be a real human. In addition, her peace-building efforts inspired many of my students to take this path."
Noor GhaziTeacher in the department of Peace, War, and Defense at UNC Chapel Hill on conflict in Iraq's modern history.
"When I'm casting about for experts who can speak to my students about war, the most important topic of our time, or any time, I look for two things. First, command of the facts, from the big picture to the details. Second, passion and a strong point of view. Lots of speakers meet one criterion, but very few meet both. David Swanson meets both and then some. I love having him talk to students in my seminar on war. He wakes them up, he rivets their attention. He has a fascinating answer to every possible question, and every challenge to his point of view. The only problem is that my students are disappointed when David departs and they're just left with me."
John HorganAuthor, The End of War; professor, Stevens Institute of Technology
Close Bases, Nonviolent Activism, Veterans, Myths, Immoral, Demilitarization, Culture of Peace, Combat Drones