US Embassy Minister-Counsellor of Political Affairs leads talk on Syria
On 28 April, Thomas Williams, the Minister-Counsellor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy, led a talk discussing US foreign policy on Syria, ISIS and the Middle East.
Thomas Williams stated that in an increasingly connected climate there is a need for partnership to avoid further widespread instability in a region already battling unemployment and economic shortfalls.
“Instability in one part of the planet can significantly affect other areas. We need to work in partnership; the US cannot solve the problems on its own, it needs the help of countries like the UK.”
Focusing primarily on Syria, Thomas Williams outlined President Barack Obama’s top three priorities; to mobilise partners to defeat Daesh, work towards a political rather than a military solution to the Syrian civil war, and to continue providing humanitarian assistance to refugees and the millions of Syrians displaced.
But while recognising the importance of US foreign policy, Thomas Williams also acknowledged complications of western involvement, and the increasing threat of sectarianism and ISIL in and beyond the Middle East.
After taking audience questions, which varied from the Security Council’s right to veto which has delayed action in Syria and the issues facing the international community from threats from the Middle East, Thomas Williams was impressed by ideas introduced into the debate.
“The questions asked showcased a range of academic and real world ideas. The audience were very kind and extremely well informed. It has been a very positive experience to speak at the WCIA and would encourage other speakers to come here.”
To learn more about Thomas William’s talk, read the event write up and view pictures, head to our post event resources page.
Original footage of the Temple of Peace opening in 1938
The original footage of the opening of the Temple of Peace on 23 November 1938 has been uncovered by a volunteer on the Wales for Peace project.
The Temple, home to the WCIA, was opened by Mrs Minnie James of Dowlais, who had lost 3 sons in the First World War and represented the war-bereaved mothers of Wales.
The rare footage shows Sir Charles Bird opening the proceedings with a speech, followed by the architect, Mr Percy Thomas, who hands a golden key to Mrs James.
The building itself was a gift from Lord David Davies of Llandinam to the Welsh people. He wanted it to be “a memorial to those gallant men [and women] from all nations who gave their lives in the war that was to end war” and so it was dedicated to the memory of the loss of life as a result of the 1914 - 1918 War.
about the history of The Temple, and explore peace heritage
around Wales and how you can get involved.