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 NEWS NOTES

June 2004



News Notes is a monthly email update of goings-on at ECAAR.  In it you will find information on current projects, announcements of upcoming events and publications, and an action corner.  We would like to include information on what our members are doing.  If you would like to submit information about an event or publication that you are involved with, please send an email to theaharvey@ecaar.org.  (The fine print - we reserve the right to edit submissions for space or content.)  

In this issue (click on a heading to jump to that section):
*ECAAR News
*Links
*In Other News
*ECAAR Publications
*Action Corner
*Upcoming Events
*How Can I Help


*ECAAR NEWS*

* It is with great sadness that we have to announce that Dorrie Weiss, ECAAR's long-time Board member, UN Representative, and staunch friend, died Wednesday, May 19th at her home in New York City, after a two-year struggle with lung cancer. Dorrie served ECAAR as a spirited activist, a wise advisor, a gracious hostess, and an open-handed donor. She was a light to those of us who were privileged to know her, and we will miss her terribly.

* ECAAR's 2003 Annual Report is now available in PDF form on our website at link. If you would like to see a summary of all of our activities in the last year, please give it a look. We are proud of our accomplishments in 2003, and appreciate your continuing support.

* ECAAR Board member, Richard Jolly is the editor in chief of the journal, "Insights," published as part of the id21 programme at the Institute of Development Studies in Sussex, UK. The journal is published every three months as a research reporting service to makers and reformers of development policy, development professionals and other stakeholders. It offers a cross-section of policy-relevant social and economic research findings from UK-based researchers and institutes, organised around topical themes.

The current issue's theme is military spending and development. Dr. Jolly invited ECAAR to participate in the editorial process, and the result includes articles by Kate Cell on Challenges to Human Security in the New South Africa; ECAAR Board member Oscar Arias on New Challenges to Global Peace; Steven Kosiak, of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (a Security Policy Working Group partner) on Cost of US Military Operations in Afghanistan and Iraq; Dylan Hendrickson, of the Conflict, Security and Development Group at Kings College, and Nicole Ball, of the Center for International Policy on Behind the Scenes Military Spending; Debbie Hiller, of Oxfam Control Arms Campaign on Guns but no Bread; and Robert Muggah of the Small Arms Survey on Small Arms - Big Bills .

The issue begins with an introduction by Richard Jolly, writing, "War in Iraq and Afghanistan, conflict between Israel and Palestine and terrorist attacks in a score of major cities have dominated the international headlines in the last three years. Few doubt their interconnections – although the sequence of cause and effect are matters of passionate debate. Meanwhile, instability grows and development, the Millennium Development Goals and poverty reduction are sidelined. Little attention is given to how the increase in military spending has been squeezing the resources available for development." The magazine is featured on the id21 website at http://www.id21.org and is available in print - for a free subscription please send your postal address to id21@ids.ac.uk.

* ECAAR Board member, Jurgen Brauer presented a paper on United States Military Expenditure at the recent The Other Economic Summit (TOES), in Brunswick, GA. The TOES summit was an alternative to the G-8 summit which was occurring at the same time on Sea Island, GA. Dr. Brauer's paper reviews United States military expenditure for the past few decades. The major message is that use of federal budget-based military expenditure data should be avoided. The economically relevant data to use are those recorded in the U.S. National Income and Product Accounts (NIPA). For 2003, the difference between Department of Defense budget-based and NIPA U.S. military expenditure amounts to well over $100 billion dollar. Even the NIPA data are incomplete as they fail to allocate a proportion of interest payments on the federal debt to the national defense account. You can download the paper at http://www.aug.edu/~sbajmb/paper-Brunswick.pdf

* ECAAR-UK has recently been listed as a resource on Activistnetwork.org.uk. The network is a non profit organisation that seeks to promote the values of peace, equality and social justice. The website provides a forum where activists can exchange information. They also seek to encourage participation by people new to progressive politics by providing an easily accessible cluster of news, facts and information. http://www.activistnetwork.org.uk/

* ECAAR-Germany celebrated its one year anniversary with its annual meeting, open to the public on June 9th. The following were the main topics of discussion:

  • Wolfram Elsner resigned from his post as chair of ECAAR-Germany. He will, however, continue in the post until a successor can be found. Suggestions are very welcome.
  • Main topic of the discussion were the two next EAEPE annual conferences in October in Crete and in Bremen, Germany, in 2005. Donations are urgently needed to finance the key note speaker in Crete, Michael Intrilligator. The conference in Bremen will hopefully be attended by many interested in ECAAR and could thus initiate further scientific work.
  • A bank account will be opened in the name of ECAAR-Germany so that donations can be received, e.g. for the attendence of Michael Intrilligator in Crete or to support activities of members from ECAAR-Russia.
  • In order toattract more participation in ECAAR-Germany activities, it was suggested to organize lectures on ECAAR relevant topics also in connection with "business meetings". Further suggestions are welcome.
Please see the new ECAAR-Germany website for more information on their activities: http://www.ecaar.de

* On June 14th an article in the Taipei Times by Joseph Stiglitz addressed the issue of International Norms Exist for a Reason. Dr. Stiglitz writes, "[S]omething has gone wrong with the system of checks and balances in the US' democracy. Congress and the press should have checked the president. The international community tried. Unfortunately, the global system of international law and governance remains too weak to prevent the determined misbehavior of the president of the world's most powerful country if he is hell-bent on starting a war on his own.

It is at moments such as these that we realize how thin a veneer our civilization may be. As statements of shared values and principles, the UN Charter, the Declaration of Human Rights and the Geneva conventions are great achievements. Whether they have the force of law is not the point; they provide guidance for civilized behavior. Each of them was motivated by the horrific lessons of the past. Let us hope that, emerging out of today's scandals, there will be a renewed commitment to live up to these ideals and to strengthen the institutions that were designed to enforce them." Read the whole article at http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/edit/archives/2004/06/14/2003175039

* James K. Galbraith writes in the May issue of the Post-Autistic Economics Review about The American Economic Problem. "At present writing in early 2004, nearly nine million Americans remain unemployed. Millions more are underemployed, and most of all, underpaid. Forty-four million lack health insurance. Our schools, colleges, universities, roads, water systems, power lines are in decay – and the funds required to repair and expand them are being cut. Not least, we are in a war with no end in sight. That is our economic problem...

"In the near term, more military spending – the Iraq war, the occupation and military restocking – and the portion of the tax cuts that did flow to the middle class are bringing what may perhaps best be described as a false dawn. Indeed in 2003 we again learned two Keynesian truths. First, that a big increase in government spending is a fast and efficient way to pump up the economic growth rate. Second, that most households are income-constrained; increasing their disposable income will increase their spending. But the future tax cuts are weighted even more heavily to the wealthy, and the pace of military spending is unstable and in any event unsatisfactory way to generate an enduring economic expansion...

"The inevitable fact is, as we pursue a policy of attack and control overseas, we are acquiring an empire...How can the cost be met, especially, if the coin of our realm, the U. S. dollar, is at the same time vulnerable? It may not be impossible, but it won’t be easy. The problem of empires, historically, is not military defeat. It is bankruptcy: moral, political, and also economic." Read the entire piece at http://ecaar.org/network/NewsNotes/galbraith.htm.

* Amartya Sen responds to the changes in India's government brought about by the recent elections. "The main message in the mandate is the importance of avoiding divisiveness, political and economic." Excerpts from an interview with Sonu Jain in the Indian Express are available at http://www.indianexpress.com/full_story.php?content_id=47635

* Call for papers: ECAAR Board member Manas Chatterji has been invited to organize a one-day technical symposium on Conflict Management and Peace Economics at the International Peace Festival to be held near Beijing during Aug. 20-23, 2004. Any ECAAR member interested in participating is invited to contact Prof. Chatterji at 607-777-2475 or mchatter@binghamton.edu

* for Papers: for sessions on The Political Economy of War, Peace, Armament, Disarmament, and Conversion organized by the European ECAAR affiliates in conjunction with the European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy (EAEPE), to be regularly held at the annual meetings of EAEPE: October 28-31, 2004, in Rethymnon, Crete (Greece) and November 10-12, 2005, in Bremen, Germany. Please contact: Prof. Wolfram Elsner, welsner@uni-bremen.de

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*LINKS*

* Foreign Policy in Focus (http://www.fpif.org)established in 1996, seeks to make the U.S. a more responsible global leader and global partner. It is a "think tank without walls" that functions as an international network of more than 650 policy analysts and advocates. Unlike traditional think tanks, FPIF is committed to advancing a citizen-based foreign policy agenda--one that is fundamentally rooted in citizen initiatives and movements. Their website is a rich source of information on issues relating to the war in Iraq, terrorism, UN Peacekeeping, military and labor. New articles this month include Getting Peacekeeping Right at the G-8 and Bush Policies Make Terrorism a Growth Industry.

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*IN OTHER NEWS*

* National Association of Democratic State Treasurers sent a public letter to President Bush on May 19th, asking him to consider the effects of his policies on state and local treasuries, siting the burdens of homeland security mandates and cuts in federal education and health care budgets. http://www.americanprogress.org/site/pp.asp?c=biJRJ8OVF&b=83284

* Writing for the Center for American Progress, Lawrence J. Korb examines The Cost of Failing to Plan. "In going to war, military professionals warn that while one may hope for the best, it is prudent to plan for the worst. In invading Iraq on March 19, 2003, to remove the regime of Saddam Hussein, the civilian leadership of the Bush administration reversed this maxim...The U.S. military, Iraqi people, and American taxpayer have paid and will continue to pay a heavy price for the Bush administration's failure to plan for the worst."
http://www.americanprogress.org/site/pp.asp?c=biJRJ8OVF&b=38979

* The G-8 summit in Sea Island, Georgia, offers the world's leading powers an opportunity to put serious resources and commitment behind efforts to stop terrorists from acquiring and using nuclear weapons or materials. Building Global Alliances for the 21st Century - a project organized by the Center for American Progress and co-chaired by Madeleine K. Albright and Robin Cook - has produced A Nuclear Nonproliferation Strategy for the 21st Century. The strategy is based on these four principles:
• Nations must recognize that nonproliferation is a two-way street;
• Progress can only be achieved by a truly global coalition;
• Nonproliferation requires actions to curb both the supply of, and demand for, nuclear
weapons, materials, and technology; and
• Leading nations must maximize the resources available to get the job done.

The paper is available at http://www.americanprogress.org/atf/cf/{E9245FE4-9A2B-43C7-A521-5D6FF2E06E03}/NUCLEAR_NP_STRAT.PDF

* In a related paper, the Global Parntership Scorecard looks at the accomplishments and acheivments of the G-8's Global networkhip Against the Spread of Weapons of Mass
Destruction, which was announced at their Kananaskis summit in June 2002. The goal of the networkhip was to raise up to USD $20 billion by 2012 to reduce the risk that unsecured weapons or materials of mass destruction might fall into the hands of terrorists. The scorecard looks at the progress that has been made in the first two years of the initiative. http://www.sgpproject.org/GP%20Scorecard.pdf

* US NGOs and aid groups are having to face growing perceptions of them as partisan organizations. "You have places like Iraq where from the perspective of a beneficiary you have 'humanitarian aid' being delivered by military personnel with weapons, contractors with weapons, NGOs with armed protection and some old-fashioned NGOs as they are. It's kind of hard for actors to distinguish between them." Randy Martin, director of global emergency operations for relief group Mercy Corps, told AlertNet.

That lack of clarity has come at a deadly price. Thirty-one local aid workers have died in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion, according to the latest U.S. State Department figures. The death toll in Afghanistan stands at 28 since March 2003. It has also dealt severe blows to humanitarian relief efforts in the form of devastating bombings of the U.N. and Red Cross headquarters in Baghdad last year. Many aid agencies have since scaled down their Iraq operations or pulled out altogether. http://www.alertnet.org/thefacts/reliefresources/108491923230.htm

* In an article for iafrica.com Amra Hadziosmanovic writes about Knitting for Reconciliation. "Hundreds of Bosnian Serb and Muslim women, who viewed each other as enemies not long ago, have decided to put the past behind them for the sake of business, bringing hope for reconciliation in this war-torn country.

"The Bosnian Handcraft, a non-governmental organisation based in the northern town of Tuzla, hires women of all ethnicities, mainly refugees who lost their men and homes during the 1992-95 war, to handmake various garments that have already attracted buyers abroad."

The co-op offers women a chance not only to get to know women from other ethnic groups, but also gainful employment and a way out of the devestation left behind by the war and massacres. http://iafrica.com/highlife/herlife/features/326009.htm

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*ECAAR PUBLICATIONS*

* The ECAAR Review 2003.  Titled "Conflict or Development?" this edition has a regional focus on Africa, the site of most of the world's current armed conflicts.  In its pages some of the leading economists of the day analyze and reflect on the relationships among military spending, domestic and foreign policy, security, and human welfare. Features include country studies and sections on business and conflict and "Trends in World Military Expenditure." Written in clear English, with informative maps, tables, and graphs, the series is designed to inform the debate among policymakers, activists, journalists, academics, students, and citizens worldwide.

You can order the Review at http://www.ecaar.org/Review_files/order.htm   

We believe the Review can be a valuable teaching tool in economics, political science, and international relations courses.  If you are interested in teaching this book, please contact Kate Cell (Katecell@ecaar.org) for a copy to review.

* "
The Full Cost of Ballistic Missile Defense"  The study estimates that the total life-cycle cost for a layered missile defense system could reach $1.2 trillion through 2035.  You can order a copy of the report from the co-sponsor of the study, http://www.armscontrolcenter.org/nmd/fullcost.html, or download the PDF file from http://www.ecaar.org/index.htm.

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*ACTION CORNER*

* The US Senate is debating the Defense Authorization Bill (S. 2400) this week. Please call your Senators to let them know your opinion on spending $447 Billion on defense. FCNL offers an easy way to express to your Representatives that you would rather that they shift federal budget priorities at http://capwiz.com/fconl/issues/alert/?alertid=5962411&type=CO

* The McCain-Lieberman Climate Stewardship Act (S139) will be up for a vote in the Senate in June. The Climate Stewardship Act provides for reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions through market-based incentives, reducing dependence on foreign oil, and making the economy more energy-efficient. But it is most important as the first serious acknowledgement by our federal government of the problem of global warming. This bipartisan bill from senators John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.) attempts to initiate action from the U.S. government after years of denial of and inaction regarding global climate change. In October, S139 surprisingly gained the support of nearly half the Senate. With just a few more senators on board, it could move forward. You can read the bill (S139) at http://thomas.loc.gov and then let your Senators know that you would like them to support the bill. You can find your Senators email and phone numbers at http://www.senate.gov

* Honor the Legacy is a national campaign dedicated to restoring America's reputation as a champion of international law and human rights. The campaign encourages President Bush and Congress to take action commensurate with the gravity of Abu Ghraib and the damage done to America's standing in the world.

Honor the Legacy was initiated by U.S. war veterans and the Education for Peace in Iraq Center (EPIC). The coalition also includes: Amnesty International USA, Oxfam America, the National Council of Churches of Christ, Physicians for Social Responsibility and Veterans for Common Sense. The campaign began the week of Memorial Day at the dedication of the World War II memorial in Washington, DC, with the launch of an online petition that calls on the President to rededicate America to international law. The petition will remain open for signatures until June 30 at http://www.epic-usa.org/Default.aspx?tabid=257

* The Friends Committee on National Legislation and the Latin America Working Group are collecting signatures on a petition to send to President Bush, asking him to reconsider his policies on "the drug war" in Columbia. Human rights observers have documented strong links between the Colombia military and security forces and the right-wing paramilitary groups. Trained Colombian military personnel are actively recruited by the paramilitaries, and military and security forces have often looked the other way, allowing paramilitary groups to commit atrocities with impunity. The U.S.-sponsored cocaine fumigation campaign has left people ill, food and alternative cash crops wilted, drinking water supplies contaminated, and aquatic life destroyed. Millions have been driven from their homes by the violence, fumigation campaign, and resulting poverty.

More weapons and military training are not what the people of Colombia and the Andean region need today. A more humane and more effectively policy would focus on U.S. assistance to the region for sustainable, community-based, economic development and for developing effective democratic and civil society institutions. To sign the petition, or get more information please visit: https://dnbweb1.blackbaud.com/OPXREPHIL/Link.asp?link=19319

* Your vote matters. In the US, register to vote, or update your address or party affiliation, at https://www.workingforchange.com/vote/index.cfm?ms=G00001

* Anyone who would be willing to put an ECAAR flyer up on a departmental bulletin board or similar venue, please contact Thea Harvey, Development Manager at theaharvey@ecaar.org.

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We would like News Notes to be a way for ECAAR members and our community to keep in touch.  We will include, if you send them to us, notices on events and publications that you are involved with.


*UPCOMING EVENTS*

* June 18-20, 2004.  2nd International Conference on Defense, Security and Economic Development, at TEI of Larissa, Larissa, Greece.  For more information email kollias@teilar.gr

* June 18-27, 2004. Implementing the Culture of Peace Youth Camp, in Sikondafürdö, Hungary. The campers will engage in work, cultural programs, lectures and discussions. http://www.irff-europe.org/project/hungary/serviceproj04.htm

* June 24, 2004. The Second UWE Annual Lecture on Economics and Security will open the Eighth Annual Conference on Economics and Security (see below). Dr. Michael Brzoska of the Bonn International Centre for Conversion (BICC), and Secretary of ECAAR-Germany, will speak on "How Rational Are Decisions on Defense?" at the Frenchay Campus of the University of the West of England, Bristol. For attendees of the conference transportation will be available from Burwalls Hall. See: http://carecon.org.uk/ for more information.

* June 24-26, 2004.  ECAAR-UK, along with the Arms Production and Trade Group, the University of the West of England and the University of Bristol will sponsor the Eighth Annual Conference on Economics and Security in Bristol, UK http://carecon.org.uk/Conferences/Conf2004/CONF2004.html

* July 1-2, 2004. Lisbon Conference on Defense and Security, Terrorism as a Global Threat: Models and Defense Strategies.  In Lisbon, Portugal.  For more information contact: CIEF- ISEG, Rua Miguel Lupi, 20, 1249-78 Lisboa. Tel.: 351 213906850; email: cief@iseg.utl.pt

* July 6-11, 2004.  The International Sociological Association Research Committee 01, the Middle East Technical University-Ankara, and the Turkish Military Academy host an International Conference on "Military Missions and Their Implications Reconsidered: The Aftermath of September 11th" in Ankara, Turkey. Visit www.asterya.com/isarc01 for more information.

* July 15-16, 2004.   The Centre for Global Political Economy at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada is organizing an international conference, The WTO and Beyond: Global Governance and State Power in the 21st Century. http://www.sfu.ca/~cgpe/projects.html

* October 3-4, 2004. On the occasion of the 54th Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs, International Student/Young Pugwash is organizing its 2nd annual conference in Seoul, Korea, "Towards a New Paradigm of International Governance." The theme of the meeting is finding novel mechanisms to ensure human security and peaceful dialogue among nations for the years to come. Discussions will include: eliminating WMDs; interregional cooperation and security; securing and reinforcing International Institutions; human security and international governance; and sustainability and future development. www.student-pugwash.org/seoul2004

* October 5-9, 2004. 54th Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs. Seoul, Korea.

* October 28-31, 2004, Annual Meetings of EAEPE, the European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy, in Rethymnon, Crete (Greece).  More information is available at http://www.institutionaleconomics.org/eaepe.php?q=node/view/92

* November 22-26, 2004. Peacebuilding, Conflict Transformation & Post War Reconstruction and Resolution A Five-Days International Training Programme for Practitioners, Policy Makers, International and National Agency Staff and NGOs working in peacebuilding, conflict transformation and post-war recovery, at the Romanian Peace Institute in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Sponsored by TRANSCEND and PATRIR. Cost 450-750 EUROs. http://www.transcend.org/tpu/index.htm


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*HOW CAN I HELP?*

*If you are considering buying a book online, please take a look at What We Give.com (http://www.whatwegive.com/).  They have tens of thousands of titles available at a discount to you, and ECAAR receives twenty percent of your purchase price. After you check out, a pop up window will ask for information about the organization to which you wish your donation to go. Enter Organizational Account # 32 and "Economists Allied for Arms Reduction" in the organization field, and your purchase will be credited to our account.

*Please consider becoming a member of ECAAR.  Your annual membership entitles you to discounts on publications, invitations to events, and most importantly, by joining us you help to ensure that reasoned perspectives on essential economic issues will continue to be heard. Membership dues and other donations are fully tax-deductible.   Visit http://www.ecaar.org/Membership.htm for more information.

*If you have enjoyed this issue of ECAAR NewsNotes, or if you wish to support our mission, please consider making a donation to ECAAR.  You can do so securely online through our website at https://www.chi-cash-advance.com/sforms/appeal196/contribute.asp or by sending a check to ECAAR, 39 E. Central Ave., Suite One, Pearl River, NY 10965.  If you have any questions call (845) 620-1542, or email ecaar@ecaar.org.

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