University for Peace: A Dream Come TrueThe Tico TimesNovember 9, 2018
Years before Carazo brought the idea of UPEACE to the floor of the United Nations, where it was heard and seized upon by fellow founder Robert Muller, former U.N. Secretary General U Thant (1961-1971) had dreamed of such an institution.
“But at that time, governments didn’t want the United Nations to have that much power, to have a direct contact with youth,” said Muller, who was Thant’s assistant.
That opinion persisted in 1978 when Carazo offered the United Nations land in Costa Rica to house a peace university.
If you started talking about peace in Central America, people thought that this was kind of left-wing thinking,” said UPEACE rector Martin Lees.
It would be years before the first UPEACE students would learn about conflict resolution (TT, Oct. 1) or committees would meet on the campus to discuss strategies for peace in Central America.
One of those young men was Carazo, to whom Bennett said if he ever became President, he would donate 400 acres of land to use for an institution for peace (TT, March 10, 1995).
People said the same about the University for Peace.”
And then in turn, generally every administration had its own problems,” said James Latham, director of Radio for Peace International (RFPI), which was housed on the campus from 1987 until UPEACE evicted it in 2003 (TT, Nov. 14,2003).
After Carazo left the presidency and became the school’s first rector, the Costa Rican government had little involvement in the university.
“It is very difficult for people to support something that other people have created; this is a problem of political character,” Carazo said.
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