Archive - March 10, 2010

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Peace Corps At Day One: #17 If It's Thursday…It Must Be Malaysia

Peace Corps At Day One: #17 If It's Thursday…It Must Be Malaysia

On April 22, 1961, Shriver and his band of brothers began their twenty-six-day venture in personal diplomacy that took them to Ghana, Nigeria, Pakistan, India, Burma, Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines. It was not easy going.   When Shriver and the Senior Staff reached Accra, Ghana, their first stop in their round-the-world trip, he was sick. He had never been sick in his adult life, and now he had laryngitis and could bearly speak. That turned out to be a blessing. As everyone liked to say, the purpose of the Peace Corps was to listen and learn. Wofford  would write in his book  Of Kennedy & Kings,  Shriver’s laryngitis was providential. Ghana’s president, Nkrumah, was also known as Osagyefo, meaning “Savior.”  He could only be effectively addressed by the respectful attitude of listening. In Ghana, Kwama Nkrumah, then the leading spokesman for African nationalism, was concerned  about the Peace Corps being guises for CIA infiltration of his . . .

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