Israel Reflections 2015–Day Two (Last One!): Gershon Baskin and IPCRI

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gershonbaskin2130_800Late in the evening on Sunday, March 8, we met with Gershon Baskin and Riman Barakat.

This was our last (official) meeting of a long day involving talks about peace and conflict resolution, and it way it was, as student Kelsey Mader called it, “the perfect way to end.” The rest of Kelsey’s recap follows:

We met Gershon and Riman at The Israel Palestine Center for Research and Information (IPCRI), an organization in Jerusalem that focuses on resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with a focus on peace and coexistence.  IPCRI supports a two-state solution in which both the Israeli and Palestinian people would have a nation and place to call home.  Gershon and Riman were both on the founding team of this organization and are still working unwaveringly toward their goal of peace.  You can visit IPCRI’s website for more information: http://ipcri.org/httpdocs/IPCRI/Who_We_Are.html.

Gershon Baskin has been involved in many negotiations on behalf of Israel – very notably, Gershon negotiated on behalf of Israel for the release of Gilad Shalit from Hamas’s control in the Gaza strip.  Gershon had many pieces of insightful information to share with us regarding his experiences and his opinions about how Israel and Palestine should move forward, but what stood out to me most was the list of eight things he shared as vital elements to a peace resolution.  Those eight elements were: (1) Palestinian statehood; (2) borders; (3) Jerusalem; (4) refugees; (5) physical link between Gaza and the West Bank; (6) economics; (7) national resources; and (8) security arrangements.  This was the first time I remember someone so clearly articulating their thoughts about a peace resolution.  It hit me how complex and emotional this issue is – eight large, heavy, sensitive elements that must be a part to a successful agreement.  It struck me how idyllic peace seems – are we crazy to strive for it when there is so much that seems to stand in the way?  Or are we crazy not to?

Cross-posted at http://www.indisputably.org.

 

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Israel Reflections 2015–Day Two (Still!): Getting Handsy at Hebrew University

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Even though we were not in the comforts of Marquette University Law School, I had to put the students back a classroom during a few stops on our trip. The first classroom experience came at Hebrew University, in a class led by Professor Avi Kluger, an expert in listening. (And the title of this blog came from one of our students describing the first exercise in which we had to follow the hand motions of our partner.)  As I was paired with my rather tall RA Sean McCarthy (and many of us were mismatched in this way), this particular exercise was really rather funny and started all of us off laughing.  A great classroom icebreaker.

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Israel Reflections 2015–Day Two: Parent’s Circle

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We have met with the Parent’s Circle each time we have gone to Israel for an amazing meeting, and this time did not disappoint either.  My favorite part was how they ended — “Do Not Be Pro-Israel; Do Not Be Pro-Palestine; Be Pro-Peace.” From student Jennifer Sosa:

Prior to going to Israel, I never quite understood how much the Israeli and Palestinian conflict actually affected all citizens, even those who are not directly involved. Consequently, due to territorial disputes, innocent people are victims of crimes from both ends. Disputes that date back hundreds of years are the cause of such victimization. For years now, religion and politics have been the predominant reasons that prevent the conflict from ceasing.

Ben and Moira [spoke to us.] Ben was an Israeli who lost his daughter, a young woman who was serving her country through the military. Upon finding out that his daughter died because of a Palestinian, nothing but hatred filled Ben and the only thing he sought was revenge. Moira, a Palestinian who was originally from the United States, lost her husband due to a misjudgment on behalf of an Israeli soldier, and through the soldier’s ability to use his authoritative power, her husband was wrongfully killed. Her husband was shot multiple times by this soldier and nothing was done to aid or save him. Moira was left angry and hurt. Read more »

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Congratulations to the 2015 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition Finalists

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Congratulations to this year’s Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition finalists: Larissa Dallman, Mary Ellis, Natalie Schiferl, and Nicole Ways. All the competitors presented strong oral arguments tonight.

Thank you to the judges of the semifinal round: Hon. William Callahan, Hon. Patricia Gorence, Hon. Nancy Joseph, Hon. Joan Kessler, Hon. JoAnne Kloppenburg, and Hon. Paul Reilly.

The final round will be held on Wednesday, April 2 at 6:00 p.m. in the Appellate Courtroom.  The teams will be matched as follows:

Mary Ellis and Natalie Schiferl v. Larissa Dallman and Nicole Ways.

Best of luck to the finalists.

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Israel Reflections 2015-Day Two: Church of the Holy Sepulchre

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church-300x200I am planning on interspersing blogs about our more academic visits with blogs about our wonderful sightseeing.  The student visit to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre turned out to be more amazing than expected, as our students were asked to participate in the mass!

Student Lauren Maddente shared her reflections here:

On the second morning of our venture to Israel, a group of students chose to attend mass at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. We started the morning with a stop for Turkish coffee and pieces of a giant sesame seed bagel. The weather was beautiful but it was the Church itself that truly amazed me. This Church is significant to Catholics because it is located where Catholics believe that Jesus was crucified, buried, and rose from the dead. The Church is large, stone, and composed of sections for different Catholic sectors (e.g., Eastern Orthodox, Roman). First, our guide took us to different features inside the church such as the stone that Catholics believe Jesus was laid on after he was crucified, and the rock that was rolled in front of the cave that his body was placed in. We entered the cave in small groups and some of us were chased out by a seemingly angry priest; apparently we overstayed our welcome in the cave. We then looked at the different sections at the church, decorated according to their given traditions. For example, while the Eastern Orthodox section had many hanging, glass lamps, the Roman section had beautiful, darker designs and mosaics composed of small pieces of glass. [You can see the ornate decorations in the photo above]

After observing different parts of the church, our guide took us to the section of the church where we would be attending mass. It was interesting to see such a large number of priests which seemed to outnumber the worshipers. The entire mass was sung and the readings were in Latin, Arabic, and English. Our very own Libby and Jennifer presented the English reading! Also, a group of us were fortunate enough to be asked to bring up the gifts. The priest who asked us to bring up the gifts did not speak a word of English, but his patience was apparent as he smiled the whole time while relying on hand gestures to direct us. I lucked out and was given a small, metal tray with two glass bottles—one with oil and one with water—and needless to say I death-gripped it the whole time. The mass was a beautiful experience. The architecture was stunning. The sight of so many worshipers was moving. The opportunity was one of a lifetime.

 

 

 

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Israel Reflections 2015: Masada & the Dead Sea

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For a little different start to our trip, I decided this year to fit in a visit to Masada and the Dead Sea.  This was both for getting over jet lag purposes and because the history and geology of both places are a great frame for the rest of the week.  From student Jillian Igl-Dickson, here is a description:

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“Upon arriving in Israel and getting a few hours of sleep we were off on our first adventure to go see and explore the Dead Sea and Masada. We left our hotel in Jerusalem late in the morning to head toward Masada where we spent the first half of our day. Thankfully, Professor Schneider took pity on our exhausted group and refrained from making us hike to the top of Masada via the Snake Trail (45 min-1 hour hike), but instead let us take the cable car to the top. Given that this was our first real experience in Israel, it was an amazing way to start off our trip. The views from the cable car of Masada and the surrounding landscape were absolutely breathtaking. We were fortunate enough to have lots of time to explore Masada and learn more about the history of the site [and the story of the Roman siege.]

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Congratulations to Marquette’s 2015 AAJ National Trial Team

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Congratulations to Marquette’s AAJ National Trial Competition Team for its third place finish in the Omaha regional.

This year’s team was comprised of Alexander Foundos and Christopher Kradle for the Plaintiff and Jennifer McNamee and Cameron Weitzner for the Defense.  The coaches for the team were Attys. Nate Blair and Jason Luczak, who spent countless hours working with the team as part of the Trial Skills Competition class at the Law School.

The American Association for Justice (AAJ) National Student Trial Advocacy Competition is one of the premier national trial competitions in the country. Well over 200 teams from law schools around the country compete.

The Omaha regional hosted 16 teams. After the three preliminary rounds, Marquette was undefeated and advanced to the semifinal round. While the Marquette team ultimately lost a well-fought trial in the semifinals, the team ended up placing third overall—an excellent showing.

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Congratulations to the 2015 Marquette Wagner Moot Court Competition Team

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2015WagnerCongratulations to 3Ls Angela Harden, Amanda Luedtke, and Samuel Weinberg for reaching the quarterfinals of the 39th Annual Robert F. Wagner National Labor & Employment Law Moot Court Competition in New York this past weekend.  The team also took second place for its Respondent’s brief.  This year’s competition was comprised of 41 teams.

Professor Paul Secunda served as the team’s faculty advisor, and Attys. and Marquette Law alumni Jesse Dill and Tony Flint coached the team.  This year’s Wagner problem involved application of the WARN Act to a plant closing of an oil company (Fazal Oil) after a coup de etat occurred in the country where the oil company was located (San Marcos). Specifically, the problem asked whether the Liquidating Fiduciary, Unforeseeable Business Circumstance and Faltering Company exceptions were able to be claimed by Fazal Oil after they closed the San Marcos oil plant without giving the employees the 60 day notice of closing required under the WARN Act.  Congratulations, again, to our Marquette Law School team for their tremendous effort in tackling these complex employment issues.

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Congratulations to the 2015 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition Semifinalists

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Congratulations to all who competed in the 2015 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition and special congratulations to this year’s semifinalists:  Larissa Dallman, Mary Ellis, Olivia Fitzgerald, Nolan Jensen, Jeremy Klang, Christopher Little, Natalie Schiferl, and Nicole Ways. Teams are advancing after four rounds of preliminary competition this past weekend.

Thank you to the numerous judges who graded briefs and heard oral arguments, as well as to all the competitors, who prepared hard for the competition and fought good battles this weekend.

The semifinal round will be held on Thursday, March 26 at 6:00 p.m. The teams will be matched as follows:

Team 11 v. Team 6 will argue in the Appellate Courtroom.

Team 10 v. Team 7 will argue in the Trial Courtroom.

The teams will argue before a panel of judges, including Hon. William Callahan; Hon. Patricia Gorence; Hon. Nancy Joseph; Hon. Joan Kessler; Hon. JoAnne Kloppenburg; and Hon. Paul Reilly.

Good luck to the semifinalists.

 

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Congratulations to the 2015 Marquette Evans Competition Teams

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Congratulations to 3Ls Melissa Fischer, Nicole Ostrowski, and Julia Westley for reaching the quarterfinals of the Evan A. Evans Constitutional Law Moot Court Competition this past weekend.  Professor Blemberg advised the team.  3Ls Brendan Leib and Peter Smiley also competed and were advised by Professor Scott Idleman and Professor Jake Carpenter.  The teams were coached by Attorneys Elizabeth Bronson, Paul Jonas, Matthew Martz, Martin St. Aubin, and Drew Walgreen.  All of the coaches are Marquette alumni who competed in moot court.

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MULS Conference to Consider Human Trafficking and Restorative Justice

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Category: Criminal Law & Process, Human Rights, Immigration Law, International Law & Diplomacy, Labor & Employment Law, Marquette Law School, Milwaukee, Poverty & Law, Public
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MartinaVImage_0On Thursday and Friday, Marquette Law School will host an important conference, “Restorative Justice and Human Trafficking — From Wisconsin to the World.”  As the title suggests, human trafficking — for sex or labor — is a both a global human rights problem and a significant issue locally.  Hundreds of cases have been reported in Wisconsin, mostly in the Milwaukee area.  The conference is designed to raise awareness about trafficking and to help concerned citizens get involved in efforts to address the problem.

The Conference kicks off at 4:30 on Thursday with a keynote address by Martina Vandenberg (pictured above), who leads the Human Trafficking Pro Bono Legal Center in Washington, D.C.  Vandenberg has worked on cases involving trafficking and other humans rights violations around the world.

On Friday, the Conference will continue with a full schedule of speakers and panels.  A panel of victim-survivors will share their experiences.  Local leaders and activists will discuss the impact of trafficking and current efforts to help victims.  Other speakers will cover the existing legal framework, potential legal reforms, and the international context of trafficking.

The Conference is sold out, but there will be a live feed that can be viewed by clicking on the “Watch Now” tabs in the pages linked to above.

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Learning Outcomes: Consistently Developing Predictably Competent Graduates

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DiplomaConsistency and predictability—these are two principles that I have come to appreciate during my first year of law school. Schedule—predictable, every Tuesday/Thursday, 5:30-9:00. Exams—unpredictable, but consistently challenging. Reading—consistent onslaught of interesting, yet challenging cases.

In the majority of the prescribed 1L courses, stare decisis has been discussed as one doctrine that helps the court gain credibility by producing predictable decisions. This doctrine has sparked a few observations about consistencies and inconsistencies with respect to the law—observations that warrant reflection.

In the upcoming month, I look forward to sharing these not-so-fleeting thoughts with you as a student blogger for March. Read more »

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