WP/Maine's 2013 Event
When Paul K. Chappell came to the University of Maine Hutchinson Center in Belfast last year, the West Point graduate and Iraq War vet made some strong statements: World peace is not naïve; human beings are not naturally violent; and Americans really can put an end to war.
The author of four books on war, peace, and human nature, Chappell now works for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. He was in Belfast Oct. 25-27, 2013 to talk about his ideas and offer training in what he calls “the art of waging peace.”
Chappell served as a captain in the Army for seven years, including a 2006 deployment to Baghdad. “One thing I learned when I was in the military,” he says, “is how excellent the training is…If you take the average army officer and how much they know about waging war and the average activist and how much they know about waging peace, there’s no comparison.”
Also the son of a combat veteran, Chappell says he’s wondered about the nature of war and peace since childhood. “Is world peace even possible? Are humans naturally violent?” are two of the questions he says he’s long struggled to answer. He's concluded that there is plenty of evidence to make his case: “What I look at is military history, which offers overwhelming evidence that human beings are not naturally violent...There is a way to move away from politically-organized violence between countries.”
The key, according to Chappell, is training. “Most activists don’t have the kind of training that’s needed to be effective the way Susan B. Anthony, Frederick Douglass and Martin Luther King were effective.” If we want peace, says Chappell, we have to work for it. And, he insists, if we work for it, we’ll achieve it: “If we can dramatically change attitudes in America toward the oppression of women, segregation and slavery, why can’t we change people’s attitudes about war?”
Chappell wrote his first book—Will War Ever End?—while still serving in Iraq, and has since completed three others, including his latest, The Art of Waging Peace.
He was at the Hutchinson Center, 80 Belmont Ave., Belfast, for three days, beginning with an open-to-the-public talk, “Is World Peace Possible?” and continuing through the weekend with a 14-hour instructional program, “Strengthening the Skills of Citizenship.”
On Saturday at 7 p.m., he led another open-to-the-public event that included a film screening and discussion of “Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Maathai,” a documentary about the first African woman to win a Nobel Peace Prize for her success building democracy and working for peace in Kenya.
Chappell was in Maine at the invitation of Waging Peace/Maine (WP/Maine), a nonpartisan citizens group dedicated to providing peace education. WP/Maine’s 2013 partners were the University of Maine Peace & Reconciliation Program, Veterans For Peace #003, Pax Christi Maine, and Americans Who Tell the Truth.
For more information about any of these things, contact WP/Maine at (207) 338-2361 or email@example.com.
"Paul K. Chappell has given us a crucial
look at war and peace from the unique perspective
of a soldier, and his new ideas show us why
world peace is both necessary and
possible in the 21st century."
--Archbishop Desmond Tutu
is available in Maine through independent booksellers, including BookStacks in Bucksport, ME
To read comments from participants in
Waging Peace/Maine's 2013 Peace Leadership Training with Paul K. Chappell, please click HERE.
• West Point graduate & Iraq War vet now serving as Peace Leadership Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
• Author of four books: Will War Ever End?,
The End of War, Peaceful Revolution,
and The Art of Waging Peace
• International speaker and
leadership trainer on the use of
nonviolence to wage peace
What others say about Paul:
"Captain Paul K. Chappell's insightful presentation on strategic nonviolent leadership inspired, empowered and equipped participants to work as activists for peace and social justice. He has developed an original, compelling, honest, realistic and pragmatic education program...the value and the need for this teaching cannot be overestimated.”
–Steve Gelb, Professor of Leadership Studies University of San Diego
“Whether you're a new activist or a veteran of the peace movement, freshen your skills tool box and learn to be a peace leader...You will learn not just skills to be a peace leader but you will gain life skills as well. I highly recommend this leadership training.”
– Barry Ladendorf
President, Veterans for Peace, San Diego