Notre Dame ReSources

Author: Dennis Brown

The following Notre Dame faculty are available for additional comment on these people and events in the news:
p. Election analysis: Three Notre Dame political analysts have weighed in with their observations on Tuesday’s election results.
p. Peri Arnold , professor of government and international studies: “Having been marginalized by Republican opponents since the 1970s, Democrats have finally found they can marginalize Republicans by casting them as extremists. For example, this strategy worked in California not only for the mushy centrist Gray Davis but also for the aggressive liberal, Barbara Boxer, against a moderate, Matt Fong. It worked in New York for Chuck Schumer and may have had some appeal in the Alabama and South Carolina governors’ races.” (219) 631-5016 p. David Leege , professor of government and international studies: “Historically, the sense of persecution has been a powerful mobilizing force for minorities ? whether Irish Catholics in the 1830s-40s, Catholics in 1928 and 1960, African-Americans in the 1960s, or progressive women in 1992. That sense of persecution was not dominant in the latter two groups in 1994 and their depressed turnout contributed to many squeaker victories in the Republican landslide of that year. During the final week of the 1998 campaign President Clinton, the first lady, the vice president and several other candidates massaged memories of persecution and fears for the future to mobilize the groups who stayed at home in 1994 to vote Tuesday. Although we do not yet have reliable figures to sustain this interpretation of turnout in 1998, there are enough hints to make this my first hypothesis in several races that originally looked like Republican victories.” (219) 631-7809 p. Robert Schmuhl , professor of American studies: “The 1998 midterm elections set up a potentially intense struggle for power within the Republican party. Congressional Republicans ? who tend to be more ideological and partisan ? are on a collision course with GOP governors, generally regarded as moderate pragmatists. How this rivalry resolves itself could well determine the direction and strength of the party in the next decade.” (219) 631-7316 p. Peace accord : The agreement reached between the Israelis and Palestinians is a “very small step in a very long journey,” says Notre Dame political scientist Alan Dowty. “At the rate that negotiations have proceeded over the last two years, it will take another two or three decades to resolve the remaining issues. These issues ? Palestinian statehood, borders, security arrangements, Jewish settlements, refugees, Jerusalem, water ? are supposed to be resolved, according to the original timetable, by next May. The chances of this happening are somewhere between nil and zilch. On the other hand, the agreement does keep the process moving, even if at a very slow pace, and it demonstrates that even a hawkish government in Israel is bound to it. It also puts Netanyahu in a good position for the next elections, despite the immediate political problems it causes for him on his right flank.” *Contact: Dennis Brown, 219-631-7367;

  • p. Pinochet I : The arrest of former Chilean dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet for “crimes of genocide and terrorism that include murder” was perfectly appropriate and legal, according to Garth Meintjes , associate director of the Center for Civil and Human Rights at Notre Dame. “He was not covered by diplomatic immunity,” Meinjtes says. “The fact that his country issued him a diplomatic passport does not mean a host country must accept it. In addition, he was not involved in any diplomatic business at all; he was traveling for personal health reasons. The problem with this whole issue is, Chile feels it has dealt with it and does not want the international community to investigate any further. But that isn’t a decision for them to make. There is no doubt in my mind that the Spanish have the right to seek, investigate and prosecute Pinochet.” *Contact: Dennis Brown, 219-631-7367;
  • p. Pinochet II : A Notre Dame history professor and a native of Chile says the arrest of Pinochet is another indication that terrorists have few places to hide. “The signals are very, very clear that when it comes to human-rights violations and crimes against humanity, there are no national boundaries to protect you,” Ivan Jaksic , associate professor of history and a fellow in Notre Dame’s Kellogg Institute for International Studies, said in an interview with the South Bend Tribune. “The times of hiding behind your borders are over. When it comes to crimes against humanity you can be tried anywhere. What we are seeing more and more is that crimes against humanity are being taken seriously and things are being done about it. The institutional bases are finally in place for beginning to prosecute.” *Contact: Dennis Brown, 219-631-7367;
  • p. Constitutional law: Douglas W. Kmiec , professor of law at Notre Dame, has coauthored three new books on the American Constitution. Published this fall, each book provides an appraisal of modern constitutional development from historical and natural law perspectives. Kmiec and Stephen B. Presser, Raoul Berger Professor of Legal History at Northwestern University, completed work on the three books this past summer after several years of collaboration. They are intended for law as well as graduate and senior undergraduate programs in government, public policy, and political science. *Contact: Dennis Brown, 219-631-7367;
  • p. Campus alcohol abuse: Recent campus disorders related to alcohol abuse make it all the more incumbent on college and university presidents to take a leadership role in “fostering an improved campus climate with regard to alcohol use,” Notre Dame’s president, Rev. Edward A. Malloy, C.S.C. , writes in the fall issue of The Presidency, a new magazine published by the American Council on Education. Father Malloy suggests that “while educational programs related to alcohol abuse are necessary first steps, they need to be integrated into a more comprehensive effort” that includes a thorough review of campus alcohol policies and an open dialogue with students and faculty with the aim of changing practices and traditions of drinking on campus. “The problems of binge drinking and widespread alcohol abuse will not soon disappear from our campuses,” Father Malloy writes. “But with thoughtful presidential leadership, we can creatively engage our communities to prevent those forms of alcohol-induced conduct that violate our sense of peace and security and that make us passive contributors to the degradation of student lives.” *Contact: Dennis Brown, 219-631-7367; *

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