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Israel and Palestine A Perspective from the Ground

Connecticut Chapter

Saturday, September 14, 2013
Negotiations have begun on a two state solution to resolve the conflict arising from two ethnic peoples living on one land in the Middle East. Many commentators believe this resolution is a key to resolving other thorny issues in the Middle East. The discussions will be complex, the details unlimited.

As concerned citizens, it is crucial to have a firsthand account of the data, to be informed about what is actually the situation on the ground at this present moment. In this context, the Library and the United Nations are pleased to present Attorney John Fussell in a presentation based upon his travels to Palestine and Israel in 2011, 2012, 2013, extensive reading on the conflict, and association as a board member of the Tree of Life Educational Fund.  His power point presentation will combine photos with maps, UN statistics regarding the conflict and a description of  impediments to peace presented by the Occupation - separation wall, checkpoints, by-bass roads, expanding settlements and settlor aggression, etc. 

Where: Kent Memorial Library, Kent, Conn.
When: Sept. 14, 2 p.m.

John T. Fussell
The son of a Presbyterian minister, John lived in Maine, New York, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Connecticut.  At age 18, he traveled through the Middle East and crossed Afghanistan on horseback. He was evacuated from Pakistan during the Indian-Pakistan war. He worked as a union organizer, and vice president of the Health Care Employees Union, 1199. He founded the Connecticut Anti-Apartheid Committee (CCAG) and was appointed along with others by Governor O’Neil to the task force on South Africa.  In coalition with trade unions, community and faith based organizations; they succeeded in 1982, to pass the first State divestment legislation in the U.S. in support of South Africans’ struggle for freedom and equality.  John graduated UCONN Law School in 1995 and works as a labor lawyer representing the Teamsters and numerous Building Trades Unions. He has volunteered for the American Association for Palestinian Equal Rights (AAPER).  He serves on the Board of the Tree of Life Educational Fund, a non-profit organization that strives to provide cross-cultural and transnational travel experiences, interfaith conferences and educational opportunities to help make this a more just and peaceful world.   In that capacity he participates in annual witness trips to Israel/Palestine and helps organize the annual Tree of Life Conferences featuring Palestinian, Israeli and American speakers driven by conscience and hope to advocate a peaceful and just resolution to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.  John is married to Dr. Mina Mina, professor at the UCONN Dental School and chairperson of the Pediatric Dentistry Department. Leila, their oldest daughter, traveled with the Tree of Life in March 2011 and returned to the West Bank for two months attending the Holy Land Trust’s program.  She graduated Skidmore College in 2012.   Their daughter Maya is attending UCONN in Storrs. John and Mina have lived in West Hartford for twenty-four years.


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