The former prime minister of Canada, Kim Campbell gave a talk today at the Council of Foreign Relations in New York about the Summit on Democracy, Terrorism & Security in Madrid which begins on 8 March, 2005.
If you've been reading your openDemocracy email you know that openDemocracy is supporting this effort by helping people like you and me organise small meetings with friends and colleagues on March 11, the one-year anniversary for the train bombings in Madrid.
Here's an open letter from Anthony Barnett explaining why.
Kim Campbell is the Secretary General of the Club de Madrid, the group of former world leaders who are organising the Summit. More than 200 of the world's top scholars have been involved so far, and the goal is to come up with constructive and practical proposals for how democracies should deal with terror.
Kim Campbell said, "We want people to take ownership of these ideas." She added that governments are vulnerable to public pressure, and that only an informed citizenry can help push policy that isn't born of fear. "Yes, terrorism presents a problem," she said, "but not one that needs to undermine our democracies."
More than 500 people around the world have registered to hold their meetings already, and we've made the meeting packs available in Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Italian and English. We want to know what you think - wherever you are - and we want to tell the people who can actually make difference what to do about it. Sign up today.
Here's a little more information. Please feel free to copy this message and email it to friends. And there is also a poster you can download, here.
Meet on March 11
Make a Difference
On March 11 2004 ten bombs exploded on four commuter trains in Madrid, killing nearly two hundred people and injuring thousands more. In the days that followed the world was inspired by the people of Spain as millions took to the streets, refusing to be silenced by terror.
A year on this spirit of resistance is still alive.
From the Ivory Coast to Ireland, India to Iran, people will be Meeting on March 11 to remember victims of terrorism from around the world, and think about ways in which things can be different in future.
Take time out on March 11. Sit down with friends, colleagues, or family.
Eat lunch or supper, and while you do:
- Remember the many victims of terrorism around the world
- Reflect on how we can deal with this threat to our way of life
- Respond to the Madrid Agenda, a set of guidelines drawn up by respected international scholars and senior politicians, aimed at shaping democratic responses to terrorism.
After your meeting, make your thoughts count by taking a few minutes to share your ideas and conclusions with us and the rest of the world.
That way we can let the political leaders know what the people think.
Find out more and register your meeting at: http://meetings.safe-democracy.org/meet/
And help us get the message out by sending this email on to your friends and colleagues.
The Meetings on March 11 are being organised by openDemocracy.net, the online magazine of global politics and culture, in support of the Madrid Agenda and the International Summit on Democracy, Terrorism and Security. The Summit is organised by the Club de Madrid and will take place in Madrid, March 8-10 2005. See http://www.safe-democracy.org/ for details.