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Peace activist to speak on Palestinian conflict and U.S. foreign policy

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – Bethel College continues its observance of National Social Work Month with a special public lecture.

The event is also a follow-up to the recent KIPCOR-sponsored film Two Sided Story, about a unique effort to encourage dialogue toward reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians.

Phyllis Bennis will speak on “A Review of American Foreign Policy and the Conflict in Palestine,” March 13 at 2:30 p.m. in Krehbiel Auditorium in the Fine Arts Center.

Bennis’ appearance at Bethel is sponsored by Bethel’s Department of Social Work and the campus group Students for Social Change. Her lecture is free and open to the public.

Bennis’ speaking tour in the area is under the auspices of the Palestine Study Group of the Peace and Social Justice Center in Wichita.

She will be at Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church in Wichita March 12, with a potluck meal at 5:45 p.m. and presentation at 6:30, and at 100 Lindquist Hall on the campus of Wichita State University March 13 at 7 p.m., sponsored by the Wichita State University Departments of Women’s Studies, Religion and Political Science and the student organizations Equality in Action and Global Faith in Action.

Bennis is the director of the New Internationalism Project at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. She is also a fellow of the Transnational Institute in Amsterdam, an IPS offshoot.

The New Internationalism Project works primarily on Middle East and United Nations issues, focusing on the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

A career journalist, Bennis has been a writer, analyst, and activist on Middle East and UN issues for many years. In 2001, she helped found, and remains on the advisory board of, the U.S. Campaign to End Israeli Occupation. She writes and speaks widely across the United States and around the world as part of the global peace movement.

She is the author of Before & After: U.S. Foreign Policy and the War on Terrorism (2006) and several “primers” published in 2009 and 2010: Understanding the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict, Ending the Iraq War, Understanding the U.S.-Iran Crisis and Ending the War in Afghanistan.

Bethel College is the only private, liberal arts college in Kansas listed in the 2013-14 analysis of top colleges and universities in the United States, and is the highest-ranked Kansas college in the Washington Monthly annual college guide for 2013-14. The four-year liberal arts college is affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. For more information, see

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