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Ethicists to explore morality of U.S. withdrawal from Iraq

Author: Arts and Letters


To stay or to leave?

After four years of war in Iraq, this is a political question, a military question – and a moral question.

A panel of ethicists will examine the moral principles that should govern when and how the United States disengages from Iraq at a conference Sept. 18 (Tuesday).

“Exit or No Exit: Morality & Withdrawal from Iraq” will take place from 6 to 8p.m. at Fordham University’s Pope Auditorium in New York City. It will be simultaneously telecast at the University of Notre Dame’s Hesburgh Center for International Studies.

Sponsored by Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and Fordham’s Center on Culture and Religion, the conference will occur just after the much-anticipated release of Gen. David Petraeus’ report on progress after the U.S. military “surge” in Iraq. It is free and open to the public at both locations.

Forum speakers will include Michael Walzer, professor of social science at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton; Sohail Hashmi, chair of international relations at Mount Holyoke College; Jean Bethke Elshtain, the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Professor of Social and Political Ethics at the University of Chicago Divinity School; and Gerard Powers, director of policy studies at the Kroc Institute.

The conference will be moderated by Trudi Rubin, foreign affairs correspondent for the Philadelphia Inquirer, who has covered Middle East, Russian and Eastern European politics for 30 years. It builds on a major 2005 conference, “The Ethics of Exit,” which examined the conditions for a just withdrawal from Iraq.

For more information, or to register for the conference at Fordham, go to or call 212-636-7347. Walk-ins are welcome to the broadcast at Notre Dame.

Contact: Gerard Powers, 574-631-3765, , or Joan Fallon, communications manager, Kroc Institute, 574-631-8819,

Originally published by Joan Fallon at on August 28, 2007.