June 2016 trip participant Peter Bergel shares moments and learnings from the trip during an interview on KMUZ Willamette Wakeup, July 15, 2016.
The following piece was written by retired Col. Ann Wright, a participant on the CCI June 2016 trip to Russia. It’s based in part on her observations during the Crimea portion of that trip.
The mainstream U.S. reporting on the Ukraine crisis has been as biased and imbalanced as any in recent memory, leaving many Americans confused about what the on-the-ground reality is, as retired Col. Ann Wright discovered.
By Ann Wright
Most Americans don’t have a clue what has happened in a place called Crimea or why it is on the frontlines of what is becoming a new Cold War. In fact, few even know where it is. But Crimea’s location has made it one of the most frequent battlegrounds of empires — and today is no exception.
The following was written by Rick Sterling, a participant on the CCI June 2016 trip.
By Rick Sterling
Recently I went on a 15-day visit to Russia organized by the Center for Citizen Initiatives. The group visited Moscow, the Crimean peninsula, Krasnodar (southern Russia) and St. Petersburg. In each location we met many locals and heard diverse viewpoints.
CCI has a long history promoting friendship and trying to overcome false assumptions between citizens of the USA and Russia. The founder Sharon Tennison has focused on making people-to-people connections including the business community, Rotary clubs, etc. This delegation was organized because of concern about escalating international tensions and the danger of a drift toward world threatening military conflict.
The video essay below was built by master photographer Hakim Young from some of the many photographs he took during our June, 2016 trip. Hakim’s photos captured more than just the story of our trip…
The following piece was written by CCI trip participant Ann Wright based on her experiences during the just-concluded CCI Russia trip.
I’ve just ended two weeks visiting cities in four regions of Russia. The one question that was asked over and over was, “Why does America hate us? Why do you demonize us?” Most would add a caveat — “I like American people and I think YOU like us individually but why does the American government hate our government?”
This article is a composite of the comments and questions that were asked to our 20-person delegation and to me as an individual. I do not attempt to defend the views but offer them as an insight into the thinking of many of the persons we came into contact with in meetings and on the streets.