>>> "Peace Corps News" <PCNews@...> 10/20/04 1:17 AM
Peace Corps Online: Kerry reaches out to RPCVs
Welcome to Peace Corps Online - October 19, 2004
A summary of Peace Corps News and Issues from around the world.
Last month we ran our exclusive interview with Peace Corps
Director Gaddi Vasquez and asked him hard questions about how he
is running the Peace Corps. RPCVs made over 100 posts commenting
on the interview and on Peace Corps Safety and Security issues.
Be sure and take a look at what they said at:
And don't forget to take our web poll on who you are supporting
for President at:
....IN THIS ISSUE...............
1. Kerry reaches out to Returned Volunteers
2. "RPCVs for Kerry" hold Press Conference
3. RPCV Carl Pope says turnout is key to election
4. The Road from 9/11 to Abu Graib
5. Eight RPCV's run for Congress
6. Peace Corps Funnies
....1. Kerry reaches out to Returned Volunteers
Last month Director Vasquez elaborated on what he had done as
Peace Corps Director and explained his position on issues of
Peace Corps Expansion, Safety and Security of Volunteers, the
Five-year Rule, and other issues. This month we focus on what
Democrats say they will do with the Peace Corps if they win the
Massachusetts State Senator David Magnani (RPCV Sierra Leone)
has been a legislator for the past twenty years and has authored
legislation in Massachusetts that provides benefits to Returned
Volunteers. Magnani has known John Kerry for 20 years and
has worked with him on early childhood education legislation and
the Conflict Diamond Legislation that helped bring about an end
to Sierra Leone's civil war.
Eleven months ago Magnani started the "RPCVs for Kerry." John
Kerry wants the 200,000 votes of RPCVs and Staff and Dave
Magnani says "There is no way in the world that any Americans
can feel safer as the world increases its hatred for America and
for Americans. We cannot use arms alone. Military might and
aggression threats simply cannot make us safer if the rest of
the world grows in distrust and suspicion for America and by
extension for Americans and Peace Corps volunteers understand
that better than anyone. They also understand what it takes to
build friendships and connections for Americans and for our
We talked with Magnani about his service as a volunteer, his
career as a legislator and where John Kerry stands on issues of
interest to RPCVs. Read our exclusive interview where we ask
Why should Returned Peace Corps Volunteers think Kerry's
proposal to triple the size of the Peace Corps would be any more
successful than President Bush's proposal two years ago to
double the size of the Peace Corps that has stalled in Congress?
Would John Kerry appoint a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer as
Peace Corps Director?
Does John Kerry support the "Peace Corps Safety and Security
Bill" passed by the House earlier this year to create an
Ombudsman at Peace Corps and the independent appointment of
Peace Corps' Inspector General?
What steps would Kerry take to provide better medical support to
volunteers with long term illnesses?
Would Kerry continue the cooperative agreement with the NPCA?
This year's Presidential election will be decided in eight to
ten "battleground" states that are too close to call. Four
battleground states -- Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West
Virginia -- are receiving the bulk of the airwave onslaught. Ten
other states -- Colorado, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota,
Nevada, New Hampshire, Oregon, and Wisconsin -- are also
considered "in play.".
A few hundred votes in one of these states may decide the
election. If you are an RPCV living in one of these states or
you have friends or family that you can encourage to vote in one
of them, then you as a Returned Volunteer will truly have a
chance to "make a difference" this year. Take a look at our
exclusive interview and whatever you decide be sure and vote.
Read the interview at:
....2. "RPCVs for Kerry" hold Press Conference
The "RPCVs for Kerry" held a Press Conference at the National
Press Club in Washington last week and we were there to hear why
Dr. Robert Pastor, Ambassador Parker Borg, and Paul Oostburg
Sanz say RPCVs should support Kerry for President. Read what
they have to say and take our poll on who you support for
You may be surprised at the results.
....3. RPCV Carl Pope says turnout is key to election
India RPCV Carl Pope, the head of the country's best-known
environmental group, told an audience at Ohio University that
the trick to getting John Kerry elected is not swaying undecided
voters, but persuading those already willing to vote for the
Democrat to actually go to the polls.
"It is not necessary to persuade a single undecided voter,"
argued Carl Pope, executive director of the national Sierra
Club. Pope, who maintains that George W. Bush is reversing a
century of environmental progress, said the group of "decided
but unmotivated" citizens, who will probably vote for Kerry if
they do vote, is much larger than the undecideds.
..........4. The Road from 9/11 to Abu Graib
RPCV Chris Matthews interviewed investigative reporter Seymour
Hersch on Hardball about his new book, "Chain of Command: The
Road From 9/11 to Abu Ghraib." Hersch told Matthews "Around the
world, America has lost some prestige because of Abu Ghraib.
It's certainly as profound as My Lai and perhaps more because it
gets to the soul of anybody who is Islamic." Hersch added that
he "was in Damascus just recently and they still like Americans,
believe it or not. Most people make a distinction between the
government and the people." Read this interview for another
view on how Americans are seen in the Islamic world at:
..........5. Eight RPCVs run for Congress
Eight RPCVs are running for the House and Senate in November,
Two RPCVs are running for Congress for the first time. Ghana
RPCV Paul Johnson is the Democratic candidate for Iowa's Fourth
Congressional District and Morocco RPCV Barbara Anne Ferris is
running for Congress in Ohio's 10th District and they need
your help in their campaigns.
RPCV Congressman Chris Shays is in a tight race for re-election
in Connecticut's 4th district. Chris Shays is an independent
thinker who has been responsible for campaign finance reform
legislation, oversight of Homeland Security, and setting up the
9/11 commission. He is in trouble because he is a moderate
Republican running in a liberal district in Connecticut and his
Democratic opponent Dianne Farrell has repeatedly attempted to
pin Shays with a conservative Republican right label, portraying
him as a former independent who has turned to the right over
time. Chris Shays is one of the most outstanding members of
Congress, he is a credit to the Returned Volunteer community,
and we support his re-election wholeheartedly. Please support
his campaign. If you live in Connecticut's 4th district, please
help get out the vote for Chris Shays.
Chris Dodd (D- Connecticut), James Walsh (R - New York), Thomas
Petri (R - Wisconsin), Sam Farr (D - California), and Mike Honda
(D - California) all seem assured of re-election but they would
still like your votes.
Read more about each of these campaigns and how you can get
involved in them at:
and please help these RPCV candidates get elected.
....6. Peace Corps Funnies
Take a look at last month's first Peace Corps funnies "Preaching
to the Choir" at:
Then go to our funny for this month and contribute your own
....8. About Peace Corps Online
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