Archive - January 2020

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Sen. Ricky Scott slams PC Director Jody Olsen in WSJ
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RPCV Sabra Ayres (Ukraine) covers her host country for LA TIMES
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New Screening Dates for A Towering Task
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Mildred Taylor (Ethiopia) publishes ALL THE DAYS PAST, ALL THE DAYS TO COME
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Two RPCVs Finalists for 2019 NBCC Awards
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What Global Issues Do You Care About? The NPCA Wants To Know
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Wuhan, China U.S. Consul General RPCV Jamie Fouss (Samoa)
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Peace Corps To End China Program–Heard on All Things Considered
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U.S. Evacuates Citizens From Epidemic-Stricken Chinese City
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Michael Meyer (China) — “The Peace Corps Cuts and Runs” (WSJ)

Sen. Ricky Scott slams PC Director Jody Olsen in WSJ

  Letter in the Wall Street Journal, January 30 —   In “The Peace Corps Cuts and Runs” (op-ed, Jan. 24), Michael Meyer claims that I, and my colleague Marco Rubio, “don’t understand [the Peace Corps’] mission” in Communist China. I can assure you this isn’t the case. I would argue it’s the defenders of the Peace Corps’ presence in Communist China who don’t understand and can’t explain its mission there. I’ve met with the Peace Corps director multiple times and asked her what the volunteers did in Communist China and why they were there. Her response? The Peace Corps has been in Communist China for the last 25 years because Communist China had asked for volunteers. She said volunteers did not teach American values or capitalism and did not coordinate their activities with the office of the U.S. Secretary of State. When I asked what the return on investment . . .

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RPCV Sabra Ayres (Ukraine) covers her host country for LA TIMES

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Steven Boyd Saum (Ukraine 1994-96)     Pompeo heads to a Ukraine that can’t seem to catch a breath By SABRA AYRES Moscow Correspondent Los Angeles Times JAN. 29, 2020 LA Times Moscow Correspondent Sabra Ayres first went to Ukraine with the Peace Corps (1995-97). It seems Ukraine can’t catch a break from getting dragged into U.S. political drama. In the fall, the quid pro quo scandal emerged and gave Ukraine’s newly elected president, Volodymyr Zelensky, an unwanted leading role in what is now the impeachment trial of President Trump. Then in early January, Iran shot down a Ukraine International Airlines passenger jet flying out of Tehran that it mistook as a potential American attack on one of its military bases after it had fired missiles at military bases in Iraq to retaliate for the U.S. killing of Iranian Gen. Qassem Suleimani. All 176 passengers and crew aboard were . . .

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New Screening Dates for A Towering Task

    FEB 22 12:00 PM Minnesota History Theatre St. Paul Saturday, February 22, 2020 12:00 PM 3:30 PM VIEW EVENT → 0 Likes Share FEB 27 4:00 PM American University Thursday, February 27, 2020 4:00 PM 7:00 PM VIEW EVENT → 0 Likes Share MAR 1 4:00 PM John F. Kennedy Presidential Library Sunday, March 1, 2020 4:00 PM 7:00 PM VIEW EVENT → 1 Likes Share MAR 3 6:30 PM University Of Wisconsin, Madison Tuesday, March 3, 2020 6:30 PM 9:00 PM VIEW EVENT → 0 Likes Share MAR 7 1:00 PM Corazon Cinema And Café St. Augustine Saturday, March 7, 2020 1:00 PM 4:00 PM VIEW EVENT → 0 Likes Share MAR 8 12:00 PM University Of North Florida Sunday, March 8, 2020 12:00 PM 3:00 PM VIEW EVENT → 0 Likes Share NOV 17 7:30 PM Reston Community Center In Reston, Virginia Tuesday, November 17, 2020 . . .

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Mildred Taylor (Ethiopia) publishes ALL THE DAYS PAST, ALL THE DAYS TO COME

    The saga of the Logan family — made famous in the Newbery Medal-winning Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry — concludes in a long-awaited and deeply fulfilling story In her tenth book, Mildred Taylor (Ethiopia 1965-67) completes her sweeping saga about the Logan family of Mississippi, which is also the story of the civil rights movement in America of the 20th century. Cassie Logan, first met in Song of the Trees and Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, is a young woman now, searching for her place in the world, a journey that takes her from Toledo to California, to law school in Boston, and, ultimately, in the 60s, home to Mississippi to participate in voter registration. She is witness to the now-historic events of the century: the Great Migration north, the rise of the civil rights movement, preceded and precipitated by the racist society of America, and the often violent confrontations that . . .

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Two RPCVs Finalists for 2019 NBCC Awards

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Steven Saum (Ukraine 1994-96) This year, two RPCV writers are nominated for the 2019 book awards. They are George Packer (Togo 1982-83) and Peter Heller (China 1996-98) Finalists for the 2019 NBCC Awards The board of the National Book Critics Circle announces the finalists for its 2019 awards in six categories: Autobiography, Biography, Criticism, Fiction, Nonfiction and Poetry. The winners will be announced at a celebration on March 12 in New York. In addition, today the recipients of three annual honors, the Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing, the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award and the John Leonard Award for First Book are announced — they can be found below the finalists. Autobiography Five Days Gone: The Mystery of My Mother’s Disappearance as a Child by Laura Cumming (Scribner) Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators by Ronan Farrow (Little, Brown) . . .

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What Global Issues Do You Care About? The NPCA Wants To Know

What global issues do you care most about? Which do you think the Peace Corps community is in the best position to help address and affect real change? These are among the critical questions National Peace Corps Association is asking in a short survey. Your input will help us identify the global issues our community cares about most and the actions we might take together to address them.   Please take a few minutes to take the survey prior to January 31 and be eligible to win a free trip to Peace Corps Connect 2020 in Seattle.   Thank you, Glenn   Survey URL: http://highpoint.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4HhxY1D9SJ3tzb7   Glenn Blumhorst RPCV Guatemala (1988-91) President and CEO

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Wuhan, China U.S. Consul General RPCV Jamie Fouss (Samoa)

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Arnold Zeitlin (Ghana 1961-63)     Wuhan, China — U.S.Consul General RPCV Jamie Fouss (Samoa) Jamie Fouss(Samoa 1981-83) arrived in Wuhan to serve as the Consul General in August 2017. His previous postings have been in Taipei, Beijing, Guangzhou, Dhaka, and Hyderabad. Prior to joining the Department of State, Jamie worked for five years at the Philippine Refugee Processing Center (PRPC), preparing Southeast Asian refugees to resettle in the United States. He also worked with Peace Corps for several years as a country desk officer at Peace Corps headquarters and then associate director in Western Samoa—where he had served as a volunteer—and country director in the Marshall Islands. Jamie has also worked as a cross-cultural training curriculum developer with Berlitz Cross-Cultural and later with Training Management Corporation in Princeton, New Jersey. Jamie grew up in a military family and graduated from high school in . . .

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Peace Corps To End China Program–Heard on All Things Considered

Thans for the ‘heads up’ from Chris Honode’ (Colombia 1967-69)     Peace Corps To End China Program January 24, 2020, 4:19 PM ET Heard on All Things Considered . . . RPCV ROB SCHMITZ The Peace Corps has decided to ax its China program starting this summer. Critics of the decision call the program one of the diplomatic success stories in the history of China-U.S. relations. ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: Starting this summer, there will no longer be Peace Corps volunteers working in China. Years ago, NPR’s own Rob Schmitz was a Peace Corps volunteer based in southwest China. He joins us now to explain why the Peace Corps decided to end its China program and what the impact of that might be. And, Rob, for this conversation, I’m going to ask you to put on a slightly different hat than your typical NPR correspondent. I want you to speak to your . . .

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U.S. Evacuates Citizens From Epidemic-Stricken Chinese City

U.S. Plans to Evacuate Citizens From Epidemic-Stricken Chinese City by James T. Areddy, Liza Lin I have been told by an RPCV in China that there are no PCVs in Wuhan. Note: JC Chinese Authorities Rush to Build New Hospital to Contain Coronavirus SHANGHAI—The U.S. government is arranging a charter flight Sunday to evacuate its citizens and diplomats from the epidemic-stricken Chinese city of Wuhan to the U.S., a person familiar with the operation said. The operation comes as the death toll from a newly identified coronavirus that originated in Wuhan climbs above 40 and the number of confirmed infections tops 1,200, with many of the cases in and around the central Chinese city of 11 million people. The fast spread of the disease in recent days across China and around the world, including two cases in the U.S., has raised fears of a deadly contagion. Roughly 1,000 American citizens . . .

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Michael Meyer (China) — “The Peace Corps Cuts and Runs” (WSJ)

Thanks for the ‘heads up’ from Marnie Mueller (Ecuador 1963-65)   • The Peace Corps Cuts and Runs  I taught teenagers in southwest China about the Bible and the stock market. by Michael Meyer (China 1995-97) Wall Street Journal, Jan. 24, 2020   Amid fanfare at the White House, the U.S. and China signed an agreement pausing the trade war. The next day, the U.S. quietly terminated its Peace Corps program in China. The news didn’t merit a presidential tweet, or even a Peace Corps press release. An explanation is in order, because the program is one of the greatest diplomatic success stories in the history of both the Peace Corps and U.S.-China relations. The program began in 1993, delayed a few years because of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. Mao Zedong had slandered the Peace Corps as a tool of American imperialism, so his more pragmatic successors changed its . . .

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