NEWARK - The war in Iraq. Ongoing violence in the Middle East. Conflict in Kashmir and Chechnya. A group of politicians, professors and others will meet Sunday in Newark in "War or Peace - a Symposium" to discuss these issues.� In two panel discussions, leading experts on the Middle East and foreign policy will explore ideas to improve U.S. relationships with European, Middle Eastern and Asian countries, and to address violence and conflict around the world. The event will be from 2:30 to 6 p.m., followed by� dinner.
The first panel will discuss the history, causes and psychology of terrorism, and some possible solutions. The second will address some major conflicts in the world, including those in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Rep. Pete Stark, D-Fremont, will be the guest of honor, and the keynote speaker will be former Illinois Rep. Paul Findley, who served in Congress from 1961 to 1983 and authored many books on Middle East affairs.
The event is organized by the American Institute of International Studies, founded by Union City resident Syed Mahmood. Mahmood was the Republican nominee for the 13th Congressional District in 2002, losing to longtime incumbent Stark.
The two men put their differences aside last year to write an op-ed piece rebuking President Bush's foreign policies.
The other speakers will be:
������� -Ivan Eland, a fellow at The Independent Institute and the author of "The Emperor Has No Clothes."
������� -Hatem Bazian, a lecturer in the Near Eastern and Ethnic Studies Department at the University of California, Berkeley.
������� -Stephen Zunes, a professor in the Department of Politics and coordinator of the Peace and Justice Studies Program at the University of San Francisco.
������� -Rick Allen, director of counseling and psychological services at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
������� -Laurence Michalak, emeritus vice chair of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.