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Making Peace Not War

[caption id="attachment_1962" align="alignright" width="200"]Blog by Sr. Barbara Kane, OP Blog by Sr. Barbara Kane, OP[/caption] Beautiful spring-like weather blessed my trip to Washington, DC to attend a meeting of the Win Without War Coalition. It was a diverse group of individuals from 40 nonprofit religious, women's and peace organizations representing 11 million "activists." The most touching realization for me was that no matter how different our beliefs might be on other issues, we all are working to bring peace to the world one individual at a time. Win Without War focuses its energies on ending war, promoting diplomacy and reducing the money spent by our government on war making. They send briefing sheets and calls to action to the coalition members about issues around these topics. The members also share "best practices" for educating and activating their members. By working together with the support of the Win Without War staff, the coalition can make a real difference in what happens in Washington and around the world. At our meeting, Joseph Cirincione, president of Plowshare's Fund, gave an excellent example of how this worked with the recent passing of the Iran Nuclear Treaty which dramatically shrunk the Iranian nuclear program. He explained that the combined efforts of coalition members outnumbered those opposing the Treaty. He also said that the Treaty has resulted in other benefits beyond the treaty itself such as the results of the recent Iranian election when a majority of conservative members of the Assembly of Experts who elect the Supreme Leader were replaced with moderate ones. The current efforts of the Coalition is to reduce military and defense spending in the budget process and spend more money on education, diplomacy and support for the marginalized. See an example of a budget proposal along this line. Communicate your desire for a more peace oriented budget. Becoming a member of the Win Without War Coalition will enable us to be better informed about these issues and allow us to join other activists around the country. We will be sending out requests to the Sisters and Associates to communicate with their representatives via phone, letter, and email to support peace making. My special thanks to Associate Marybeth Auletto, OPA, who first brought Win Without War to the attention of the Peace and Nonviolence Committee.

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