Die Peace-Pipe-Briefe / Letters to Friends (dt./eng.)

“In 1931 the Rotarians in the city of Keokuk, Iowa must have sensed that dark clouds were brewing in the world, and especially in Europe. They thought about the namesake of their city, Chief Keokuk, and his peace pipe. Their invitation to other Rotary Clubs to join them in smoking the peace pipe was more than a symbolic gesture.“

The focus of this 330-page publication is the Peace Pipe Initiative begun by the Rotary Club of Keokuk, Iowa in 1931 and which is now being repeated in a new format that emphasizes 

German-American and worldwide relationships. Both Carol Kahn Strauss of the Leo Baeck Institute in New York City and Bill Tubbs, journalist, Eldridge, Iowa, have generously contributed personal commentaries. The book is bilingual (German-English) and documents

all 196 replies from Rotary Clubs around the world from Berlin to Jerusalem, from Buenos Aires to Cape Town. The original letters as well as today's replies were written in response to

a heightened sense of growing international tension and uncertainty. 

The question that confronts us today is the same as in 1931-32: Do our leaders have the capacity to reach beyond their grasp, to challenge us to seek the higher angels of nature, to choose "Be informed! Be informed!" rather than "Be afraid! Be afraid!" In the end, however, we know that world peace is too important to be left in the hands of our leaders. Peace starts in our own back yards when we speak our for understanding when their is disharmony, food security where there is hunger, health care where there is disease, education where there is illiteracy, conservation where there is environmental harm, sustainable development where there is poverty ... and when we write letters across border to build goodwill and better friendships. - William Tubbs (2019)

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