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“Green Politics in New Europe: Hope for Change?” Petra Kelly

Tenth Annual Ava Helen Pauling Memorial Lecture for World Peace

October 30, 1991


Petra Kelly
Petra Kelly (German Green Party)

“Green Politics in New Europe: Hope for Change?”  Watch Video

Petra Kelly, drawing on her experience as a German politician both before and after reunification, discusses the state of socioeconomic and ecological affairs in post-Cold War Europe. Her lecture extends these topics globally, but particularly emphasizes the importance of regaining a more balanced relationship between Eastern and Western Europe.

Kelly describes the ways in which the profligate lifestyle of the Western world, coupled with its exploitation of Third World countries, has inflicted significant damage on the global environment. She laments the use of government funds to produce more weapons when those same funds could be spent, for example, to feed starving children. She discusses Western Europe's failure to provide refuge for those who have escaped from war-torn, impoverished countries, and likewise notes strains of German racism as directed toward foreign workers.

Throughout her presentation, Kelly promotes Green Party policies and describes the ways in which the Green Party would seek to resolve the various problems that she discusses. She stresses the importance of gender equality in politics, and warns of the damage caused by remaining silent in the face of injustice. Kelly wraps up her speech by expressing hope for a new, unselfish way of thinking in Europe and the rest of the world.

Following the conclusion of her prepared remarks, Kelly responds to questions from the audience for approximately half an hour.

Related Names: Linus Pauling, Ava Helen Pauling