From spring of 2003 until my graduation in May 2006, I wrote many articles for several sections of my college newspaper, the Los Angeles Loyolan. Here's one of my News articles.
More than "Just Voices"
Week of events and speakers comes to a close.

Mark J. Lehman
A & E Editor

Originally Published: Friday, November 11, 2005

The fifth annual Bellarmine Forum runs through Saturday. The Loyolan highlights a presentation on Middle East relations.

At noon on Monday, a 31-year teaching veteran wearing a yarmulke stepped to a podium in front of a full house in University Hall 1000.

Arthur Gross-Schaefer, an LMU professor of business law and ethics, began the Bellarmine Forum presentation titled "Towards Peace in the Middle East: A Little Less Finger Pointing and A Little More Cooperation" with a warning for all in attendance.

"Monologues are dangerous. That's not how you create peace. You must share each person's story. My goal is dialogue."

A member of Rabbis for Human Rights as well as a former aid to a member of the Israeli Parliament, Gross-Schaefer has recently visited Gaza during the preparations for the disengagement. Upon completion, there will no longer be an Israeli presence in Gaza. While there, he was able to take a tour of the security wall from both the Israeli and Palestinian sides. He spoke of the unique perspective he gained from the trip and shared his thoughts on Israel-Palestine relations during the presentation.

"Israel is fearful that many countries would like to wipe [them out]," Gross-Schaefer explained. He continued by stating the Palestinian sentiment that "when the Israelites were being oppressed, they came and settled on our land."

He then introduced Nonie Darwish, an Arab-American woman who spoke about her experience growing up in the Middle East and shared methods she felt would bring peace to the region.

"I can support Israel and still love and support my culture of origin. That is the right attitude for peace," Darwish said. "Diversity, pluralism and tolerance should not just be virtues in the West, but in the Middle East as well."

Some students and teachers felt the speakers presented both interesting and informed perspectives.

Esther Dzida, a junior sociology major, was intrigued by the hope exuded by the speakers.

"I liked how even though they brought up all the conflict and danger many people live with in [the Middle East], they also emphasized optimism for the future and resolve toward peace between these two group of people," Dzida said.

Gamlin anticipates a continued openness among students during the rest of the Forum.

"I hope the dialogue will continue well beyond this year's Bellarmine Forum, which is already becoming a great success," he said.
[via Los Angeles Loyolan:]
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