Ending Mass Atrocities in the 21st Century, Monash Wallenberg Oration by Simon Adams

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Date(s) - 28/02/2013
7:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Caulfield Campus, H116, Monash University

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In the half century after the Holocaust, ‘Never Again’ was never more than an empty promise. The international community failed to stop the genocide in Cambodia, dithered as crimes against humanity were committed in Bosnia, and passively watched as a million people were killed in the Rwandan genocide. Shamed by these failures, in 2005 the largest gathering of heads of state and government ever assembled, meeting at the United Nations World Summit, unanimously adopted the ‘Responsibility to Protect’ (R2P). R2P is a commitment to protect all human beings from crimes against humanity, genocide, ethnic cleansing and war crimes. But what is required for R2P to have meaning, save lives and prevent mass atrocities in the twenty-first century?

Simon Adams is the Executive Director of the leading genocide prevention agency, The Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect in New York. Each year, the Monash Wallenberg Oration explores important themes in Holocaust and genocide scholarship. It is named in memory of Raoul Wallenberg, who risked his life to save Jews during the Holocaust.

Simon Adams

Dr. Adams has previously worked with NGOs, governments and community organizations in South Africa, East Timor, Northern Ireland, Rwanda, Mozambique, Zimbabwe and elsewhere. He is a former anti-apartheid activist and member of the African National Congress. Dr. Adams is the author of four books and numerous academic articles with a focus on international conflict. He has also written for the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Kuwait Times, The Australian, Huffington Post, New York Times and many other publications.

Dr. Adams studied at the University of Witswatersrand in South Africa and at the University of New South Wales in Australia, where he received his Ph.D. He is also a graduate of the Executive Leadership Program at the Harvard Business School. Dr. Adams has lectured at a number of international universities. He served as Pro Vice Chancellor (International Engagement) at Monash University and as Vice President of its South African campus between 2008-2010.

Among his other commitments, Dr. Adams is currently Special Advisor to the Monash-Oxfam Partnership and a member of the board at Catalpa International, an East Timorese not-for-profit information technology and development organization.

This lecture is presented by the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilisation at Monash University in conjunction with the Holocaust and Genocide Studies program.