Yesterday our CCI group arrived back in the US from Russia. Twenty of us traveled to six Russian cities where we interacted with citizens from many levels of Russian society. It was an amazing experience.
We witnessed street life, businesses, NGO’s, youth groups, private medical clinics, new housing developments surrounding the cities, and well-kept city parks. We met with city officials and traveled by metro and taxis. We met in homes with Russian people from many walks of life.
Our American travelers were impressed with the diversity of Russians’ thinking, the level of the Russian economy (despite US-enforced economic sanctions), and the remarkable renovation of their cities which they have been able to accomplish since the year 2000. We spoke with large groups of Russians and hundreds of individual Russians during encounters throughout the days in each city. All the Russians we met impressed on us that they and the whole of Russia wants to be friends and partners with Americans and with America in general. Several asked if we could bring President Obama to meet with them––believing they could dispel him of the need for sanctions and military maneuvers on their borders.
In 1983, after our very first trip to the USSR, I put out an invitation to any American who wished to travel to the USSR with us to see whether or not Americans would consider Soviets as an enemy people. People responded and signed up for trips to “see and learn for themselves”. This began CCI’s first program––getting Americans to the USSR as citizen diplomats, then bringing information back home. This program greatly dispelled misinformation between both countries. The truth of it was that every American who traveled with CCI during that dangerous period realized that they “found no enemy” at home.
Also during that period, Suzanne Massie, an author who knew Russia well, reached out to President Reagan and over a period of time had 20 breakfasts with him and Nancy. During these breakfasts, Suzanne dispelled Reagan of his fear of the USSR and Mikhail Gorbachev. Shortly thereafter Reagan and Gorbachev met at Reykjavik––and understanding between our two nations began to grow.
I want to invite you to consider traveling with CCI between September 2016 and June 2017––to visit Russian cities, schools, universities, NGOs, journalists, Russian people in their homes, and Russians in their work places. I want you to hear their concerns about living together on this small planet.
An influx of American groups going to Russia today is PARAMOUNT. We as citizens of the United States MUST be better informed. Our mainstream media doesn’t give us the accurate information that we need. We must be part of a growing informed population of Americans who understand and take the responsibility to stand up for a future safe from wars. I speak here specifically about a nuclear war which could start by accident, false flag, or intention–including the military escalation which is going on in Poland and the Baltic countries as I write you.
If you would like to consider joining us on an upcoming trip, please drop me a note using the contact form on the CCI website.