A Center for Free Thought

Main photo: “The Death of Socrates” by Jacques-Louis David, public domain

We are a community of persons, based in the Kansas City Metro Area, who are lovers of truth, reason, and people.

The solution has to start with the real story” Raoul Peck


(Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84206282809?pwd=THdkQlNBNENjZ3Bpbit5Z1grN3hEZz09
meeting location, map, and more Zoom options below.)



Program for Sunday, May 19, 2024

Gaza Destruction Montage[1]

“Israel’s Self-Destruction”

Two segments from Amanpour and Company:

The number of Gazans that have been killed can barely be counted.[6] The United States is warning Israel not to send ground troops into an offensive in war ravaged Rafah. In Early February, Aluf Benn, the editor-in-chief at Haaretz, a liberal Israeli national daily daily newspaper in Tel Aviv, Israel[7], wrote an essay for Foreign Affairs Magazine called “Israel’s Self-Destruction: Netanyahu, the Palestinians, and the Price of Neglect.”[3] And he’s joining Walter Isaacson to talk about it.[2]

Amanpour and Company video segment with Aluf Benn: Haaretz EIC on Netanyahu & “Israel’s Self-Destruction”[2] (17 minutes), with discussion to follow.

World-wide protests of the Israeli military campaign in Gaza, including college campus protests, are testing the distinction between being anti-Semitic and opposition to the current actions of the Israeli government. The crisis across America’s campuses is making some wrestle with the commonly used definition of antisemitism, as was written by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, a definition which has been adopted by countries across the globe.[5] Amanpour’s Michel Martin speaks to the author Kenneth Stern[8], who led the drafting of that document and who now warns it’s being used to chill free speech.[4]

Stern is author of The Conflict over the Conflict[9] (2020) further developing this free speech topic. (This is not intended to be a discussion of definitions but of the politics of free speech, though In December 2020 Stern urged the incoming Biden administration not to adopt the IHRA Working Definition that he himself had authored[8].)

Amanpour and Company video segment with Kenneth Stern: He Wrote a Definition of Antisemitism; Now He Says It’s Being Weaponized[4] (18 minutes), with discussion to follow.



[1] Image attribution: Montage of Frames from Amanpour and Company episodes[2][4], fair use assertion.

[2] Amanpour and Company 02.20.2024 – Haaretz EIC on Netanyahu & “Israel’s Self-Destruction”: https://www.pbs.org/wnet/amanpour-and-company/video/haaretz-eic-on-netanyahu-israels-self-destruction/.

[3] Foreign Affairs, Israel’s Self-Destruction: Netanyahu, the Palestinians, and the Price of Neglect, By Aluf Benn, March/April 2024: https://www.foreignaffairs.com/israel/israels-netanyahu-self-destruction. An abridged version may be found in The Business Standard: https://www.tbsnews.net/features/panorama/israels-self-destruction-netanyahu-palestinians-and-price-neglect-793206.

[4] Amanpour and Company 05.01.2024 – He Wrote a Definition of Antisemitism; Now He Says It’s Being Weaponized: https://www.pbs.org/wnet/amanpour-and-company/video/he-wrote-a-definition-of-antisemitism-now-he-says-its-being-weaponized/.

[5] International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance – Working definition of antisemitism: https://holocaustremembrance.com/resources/working-definition-antisemitism, US Department of State: https://www.state.gov/defining-antisemitism/.

[6] Vox, The controversy over Gaza’s death toll, explained: https://www.vox.com/world-politics/2024/5/17/24159263/gaza-deaths-israel-hamas-hospital-ministry-health.

[7] Aluf Benn, journalist, on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aluf_Benn.

[8] Kenneth S Stern, attorney and an author, on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenneth_S._Stern.

[9] Book, The Conflict over the Conflict: The Israel/Palestine Campus Debate, 2020, By Kenneth S. Stern, New Jewish Press, University of Toronto Press: https://utorontopress.com/9781487507367/the-conflict-over-the-conflict/. Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Stern-Conflict-over-Kenneth-S/dp/1487507364.


Future Programs

There are two ways to join our meeting (2:00 to 4:00 PM)

1. In Person: 312 Haag Hall, UMKC:

5211 Charlotte St. Parking. (Click enlarge)
Image components: Google Maps https://goo.gl/maps/b3XtZV2LaBh8diM97

Our Sunday CoR meetings are now held in Haag Hall, 312, on the UMKC Campus. Free parking is plentiful on Sundays. It is strongly advised (because of the extreme convenience provided) that the parking building be used. Drive to level 4 of the parking building at the corner of 52nd and Rockhill Road. (The entrances are a little south-west on Charlotte street.) After parking, walk across the aerial skywalk to Haag and Royall Halls. The skywalk dead-ends in a hallway on the 3rd floor. After the reaching the hallway, turn to your right. Walk a few steps, turn to your right. Enter Haag 312.

Map: https://goo.gl/maps/b3XtZV2LaBh8diM97

Google and Apple Maps give accurate parking garage directions for “5211 Charlotte St., Kansas City, MO.” Spiral up the garage to level 4 on the west side, and use the east side to descend to the street level. (If on the way you wind up on Holmes, drive east on 53rd to Charlotte, as 52nd is one-way westbound, but to exit to Holmes use 52nd. Most will exit directly to Rockhill, and must use 53rd.)

OR

2. Zoom meeting athttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/84206282809?pwd=THdkQlNBNENjZ3Bpbit5Z1grN3hEZz09 (NEW–Click here for web browser or Zoom enabled cell phone.)

One tap voice only mobile
+17193594580,,84206282809#,,,,*534617# US
+12532050468,,84206282809#,,,,*534617# US

Telephone or mobile phone: +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston).
Meeting ID: 842 0628 2809
Passcode: 534617 (NEW, you will need this if not using the links above.)

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/keFbqlhipP


For past programs, please check out our Monthly schedules page.

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