Serious Discussions: “Ukraine: Stop the Carnage, Build the Peace”

By Ray McGovern, April 24, 2022

An extraordinary series of thoughtful webinar conversations arranged by Helena Cobban and Richard Falk of “Just World Educational” is described below in Helena’s recent letter to participants. Included are links not only to the final report, but also to the video and podcast of the live and lively discussion among some of the participants on the April 19 “zoom”, to launch and add comments to the report. The participants in that launch are listed below.

I was asked to put my two cents’ worth in twice: minutes 22:20-25:10 and minutes 54:36-58:14.

My first comments struck a discordant, but I believe, realist note.

That video and the others are quite good. I admit, though, that I can identify with that hungry goat rummaging around in an old Hollywood lot who said to his partner, “I enjoyed the book more than the film.” I encourage you to purchase or download the very well put-together, 32-page report summarizing this series of highly relevant conversations.


Message from Helena Cobban
Executive Director, Just World Educational
April 21, 2022

Dear friends–

The war, the killing, and the suffering in Ukraine all continue… And the often-deadly sequelae of this conflict– including its toxic effects on the environment in Ukraine and much further afield– are still roiling much of the world, especially in the Global South. …

On Tuesday [April 19], we held an excellent online launch for Just World Ed’s report, “Ukraine: Stop the Carnage, Build the Peace!” In this event, my colleague Richard Falk and I had the honor of hosting eight clear-eyed leaders of the antiwar and anti-nuclear movements. You can see the 66-minute video of our discussion here, or if you’re an audio person, you can listen to it on our podcast platform here.

Participating with Richard and me in the launch were the following:
Medea Benjamin, representing report co-sponsor CODEPINK. (Medea also participated in one of the webinar sessions on which the report was based.)
David Swanson, representing report co-sponsor World Beyond War
Gar Smith, representing report co-sponsor Environmentalists Against War
Cynthia Lazaroff and David Barash, our guest experts in the webinar session on the nuclear dimensions of the Ukraine Crisis
Katrina vanden Heuvel and Ray McGovern, guest experts on Russian affairs in two of our other webinar sessions, and
Rick Sterling, a member of JWE’s board and board chair of the Mount Diablo Peace & Justice Center.

Our discussion was fairly unstructured. We covered topics such as the list of Policy Recommendations that were included in the report and the challenges of explaining the realities of Cold War-era “mutually assured destruction” to a whole new generation of Americans who did not need to think much about such matters during the decades of the United States’ hegemonic dominance of the world.

You can download the whole text of our report in PDF format (1.2 MB) at this link on our website. Or, you can buy copies of the printed report from Amazon for $5 each, here. If you just want to look at our Policy Recommendations, you’ll find them in this PDF. Remember, too, that this report is complementary to the Online Learning Hub we released April 4, that presents the full multimedia records (videos, audio, transcripts) of the eight webinars on Ukraine we presented in March, along with links to other related materials.

We hope you’ll find that, between them, the printed (or print-at-home) report and the Online Learning Hub can spark thought-provoking discussions and engagement in your community group, classroom, or congregation.

What an honor and a great intellectual journey it was for me to plan and then work with Richard Falk to host all those smart and gripping online conversations.