On April 20, 1981, KPFK held a day-long peace festival, dedicating the entire day to examining the issues of the arms race, the military budget, and the threat of nuclear war. The station opened its doors to anyone who wanted to come learn during a teach-in session, and broadcast the proceedings live. The teach-in on the arms race was coordinated by Suzi Weissman, editor of Critique, a journal of Soviet studies and socialist theory, and long-time political activist. Part 1 starts with a poetry reading by Roscoe Lee Browne, introductory remarks by Weissman, and the first panel presentation by Bob Brenner, associate professor of history at UCLA and editor of Against the Current, who speaks on the arms race in the economy. Part 2 begins with talks by David Dellinger, war and tax resister and political activist; William C. Green, lecturer of International Relations at the School of International Relations and coordinator of the Defense and Strategic Studies program at the USC Center for Study of American Experience, who offers a dissenting view; folk singer Peter Alsop performs a brief set of music; and a portion of a discussion between Carl Boggs, department of sociology at UCLA, author of Gramsci's Marxism and co-editor of The Politics of Eurocommunism, and Bob Edelman, professor of history at UC San Diego, who teaches Russian history, discussing whether the Soviet Union is a real threat to US security (conversation cuts off 10 minutes into the discussion before reel ends). Part 3 begins with Don Lazere, professor of English at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and NEA Fellow at USC, who discusses the culture of militarism and the semantics of death with Todd Gitlin, department of sociology at UC Berkeley, author of The Whole World Is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Un-Making of the New Left and former president of Students for a Democratic Society; Bruce Mussell from the Alliance for Survival who talks about the links between nuclear weapons and nuclear energy research; Clare Spark, program director for KPFK who offers a statement on how to deal with one's children in the nuclear age; and Maury Weiner, former deputy mayor of Los Angeles who appeals to the audience to transcend single-issue politics and form a broad political campaign; and ends with a very brief question-and-answer session.
This recording has been digitally preserved as part of Pacifica's American Women Making History and Culture: 1963-1982 grant preservation project, and is available for research and reference . Please contact the archives via telephone: 818-506-1077 or email: americanwomen at pacificaradioarchives dot org for information on how to obtain a copy of this program. Thank you.