Moakley Peace Medal Acceptance Speech
In accepting this award on behalf of my father, I would like to begin as he would, by offering his and my most sincere and humble gratitude to Chancellor Motley and to the University of Massachusetts and its distinguished members for creating this medal and for choosing my father and, in a broader sense, the YaLa movement, as the recipients of the Moakley Peace medal. The very existence of the Moakley Chair of Peace and Reconciliation and of the Moakley Peace Medal are worthy of more thanks than can be offered, standing as testaments to the ongoing desire for peace and the rational non-violent resolution of conflict that is embedded in this university and in communities throughout the world. It is with this understanding that I give thanks not only on behalf of my father and YaLa for the honor of receiving the Medal, but on behalf of all people affected by conflict for the convictions and the principles that led to the creation of this award and the committee and Chair that supports it.
When my father and others worked to develop the YaLa movement, their goal was simple despite the complexities involved in its achievement. There is nothing simpler than peace, yet nothing more difficult to achieve with the many complexities of the modern geopolitical situation. In the Middle East, issues of economic and social inequality, religious and cultural conflict, territorial disputes, and the power provided by access to resources and wealth