In March of 2003, during the Shock and Awe" military campaign, three American members of a Christian Peacemaker Team were injured in a car accident in the Iraqi desert. (One of those peacemakers, Cliff Kindy, is from North Manchester, Ind.. He came and added his memories to the presentation.) They were taken to Rutba, a Sunni-majority town whose lone hospital had been partially destroyed just three days earlier by U.S. bombs.

The peacemakers feared that they would be targeted for retribution. Instead, they were met with kindness and compassion. Dr. Farouq Al-Dulaimi, who treated their wounds, said, “We take care of everyone - Christian, Muslim, Iraqi, American. It doesn’t matter. We are all human beings. We are all sisters and brothers.” When it came time for the peacemakers to leave, Dr. Al-Dulaimi had one request: “Just go and tell the world about Rutba.”

In his book and his presentations, Barrett has been helping the peacemakers do just that. He emphasized that the barriers people erect between ourselves - along religious, national, political, racial, or economic lines - obscure the fact that, as humans, “we’ve got far more in common with each other than differences.”

Barrett, who spent 20 years traveling the globe as a wire correspondent, has found that to be true wherever he goes. The peacemakers in Iraq, he said, “discovered that ‘the enemy’ wasn’t the enemy.” Instead of being split by doctrinal and national differences, the American Christians and the Iraqi Muslims were united by the experiences and values they shared.

Barrett hopes that people take more from the The Gospel of Rutba than just a heartwarming story. Acknowledging our shared humanity requires us to reevaluate our own beliefs and actions, both individually and collectively, he observed.

Barrett expressed specific concern about U.S. military policy in the Middle East. On a return trip to Iraq in 2010, he spoke with one of the nurses who treated the peacemakers in 2003. Echoing what Barrett had heard around the region, the nurse said, “We love Americans, but we hate your violence.” With bombs and drones, the U.S. government fights terror by using weapons of terror

In doing so, Barrett believes the U.S. is only perpetuating violence and hardening the hearts of people outside the country. He looks to the Christian peacemakers as better examples of how to effect positive change in the Middle East. By going to damaged, destitute areas and acting with empathy to find common ground, Barrett calls these peacemakers “some of the best diplomats America has.”

This event was co-sponsored by the Pulaski County Public Library and the Winamac First United Methodist Church. The library has copies of The Gospel of Rutba available for checkout.

Article submitted by the Pulaski County Public Library


Local News Briefs

Monterey Days Festival Sept. 4-7

MONTEREY - The 18th annual Monterey Days Festival will run Friday,Sept. 4 through Monday, Sept. 7, over Labor Day weekend in downtown Monterey. The theme will be "Your Window to the World."

Grand Marshall will be Monterey-Tippecanoe Twp. Public Library. The annual parade will step off at 5 p.m., Saturday. The traditional American Legion Ox Roast will begin at 11 a.m., Labor Day.

Fair Board tractor pull Sejpt. 5

The Pulaski County Fair Board has rescheduled its tractor pull for 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 5, at the county fairgrounds in the Winamac Town Park. Admission will be $10 (children age 5 and under free)

The antique tractor pull will be at 10 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 6, also at the fairgrounds.

Dry spell continues, adds to crop stress

LANSING, Mich. - Below average temperatures and little to no rain have Indiana farmers concerned over the condition of their crops for the upcoming harvest, according to the USDA National Agriculture Statistics Service (NASS), Great Lakes Region.

Cool temperatures allowed disease pressure in corn and soybeans to persist, and has slowed maturity in the corn crop.

PMH Blood Drive Sept. 8

Pulaski Memorial Hospital will hold a blood drive from 1 to 6 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 8, at the hospital.

Prospective donors may sign up online at The sponsor code is PMH. Or call Mary at 574-204-4132.

Community Foundation grant cycle deadline Sept. 11

Community and youth organizations will be happy to hear that annual grant opportunities have been announced by the Community Foundation of Pulaski County. Grant applications will be available at the end of the week. 

“The board of directors is excited to offer significant grants for community projects and needs,” said Wendy Rose, executive director. Community grants of up to $7,500 may be awarded to organizations for worthwhile, needed programs and projects.  

PCPL lists September events

The Pulaski County Public Library has listed its special programs and activities for September.

All events will take place at the Winamac branch unless otherwise noted. For more information on any program, call the library at 574-946-3432.

Pulaski County July unemployment rate ticks up to 4.3%

Pulaski County's unemployment rate rose slightly to 4.3 percent in July, up from 4.1 percent in June, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development reported Monday (Aug. 24). The rate was 5.1 percent a year ago. The county has 6,229 employed persons in a labor force of 6,509. Last month those numbers were  6,409 of 6,685.

The state's July unemployment rate fell to 4.7 percent (seasonally adjusted, down from 4.9 percent in June. The July 2014 rate was 5.8 percent. The U.S. rate remained steady at 5.3 percent, the same as June. A year ago, the national rate was 6.2 percent.

Tippecanoe River State Park Poker Paddle Sept. 13

WINAMAC - The third annual Poker Paddle will begin at 1 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 13, at Tippecanoe River State Park.

The entry fee is $5. Also, all gate fees apply. Pre-registration at the park office is encouraged. Registration and entry fees will be accepted at the River Picnic Shelter until 12 noon the day of the event.

4-H Horse & Pony contesting, Fun Show Sept. 13

The Pulaski County Horse & Pony 4-H Club will hold its annual contesting and Fun Show Sunday, Sept. 13, beginning at 1 p.m., at the outdoor arena at the county fairgrounds in Winamac.

This free show is open to the public.


Indiana News

Property taxes, annexation and drones among issues addressed by Farm Bureau delegates

INDIANAPOLIS - More than 260 delegates from across the state met in Indianapolis last weekend (Aug.28-30) to consider the policy that will guide Indiana Farm Bureau for the next year.

“Delegates reaffirmed our quest to seek permanent and lasting property tax relief as we go into the next session of the Indiana General Assembly,” noted INFB President Don Villwock. The policy reads, “We support permanent and substantial measures to free Hoosiers from the burden of property taxes.”

Television ad attacks Donnelly's support of Iran nuclear accord

A television attack ad, criticizing Sen. Joe Donnelly’s support of the proposed Iran nuclear agreement, has been launched by the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) at a reported cost of $200,000.

The 30-second ad began running Sunday (Aug. 30) in the South Bend and Indianapolis markets and will continue for two weeks

Pence creates a task force to address the state’s growing drug abuse epidemic

INDIANAPOLIS – Gov. Mike Pence announced the creation of a drug task force Tuesday (Sept. 1) to address the state’s growing epidemic of substance abuse.

“We’ve created the Governor’s Task Force on Drug Enforcement, Treatment, and Prevention because it is time to take a holistic and collaborative approach to addressing substance abuse and its many heartbreaking repercussions in our state,” said Gov. Pence.

Former Sen. Beverly Gard appointed to redistricting committee

INDIANAPOLIS – Senate Pro Tem David Long announced Tuesday (Aug. 25) his appointment of former Sen. Beverly Gard, R-Greenfield, to serve on the Special Interim Study Committee on Redistricting.

The committee is tasked with conducting an in-depth study of the various methods used by Indiana and other states for drawing Congressional and state legislative district boundaries, and outlining the potential advantages and disadvantages of any alternative approaches to Indiana’s current redistricting process.


Indy Star Top Stories

Indystar - Today's Top Stories
Indystar - Today's Top Stories

Fair News

Indiana State Fair entertains, educates more than 907,000 visitors

INDIANAPOLIS –The 2015 Indiana State Fair "Year of the Farmer" presented by Dow AgroSciences has come to a close and fairgoers and organizers alike can agree that this year saw record-breaking days, new entertainment and an overwhelming display of all things agriculture, with more than 90 percent of visitors surveyed recognizing it as the Year of the Farmer.

This year the Indiana State Fair welcomed a total of 907,342 fairgoers through the gates over the 17-days, the fifth highest attendance on record.

Pulaski County 4-H'ers perform well in State Fair Fashion Revue

INDIANAPOLIS - Once again Pulaski County 4-H'ers have performed well at the Indiana State Fair Fashion Revue for outfits they made and modeled in progressive competitions in Indianapolis.

Sara Bailey finished as second alternate (third place) in the dress-up category in the Fashion Revue.

Simmermaker Farm earns Hoosier Homestead Award

INDIANAPOLIS - During the celebration of the Year of the Farmer at the Indiana State Fair, Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann and Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director Ted McKinney presented 67 families with a Hoosier Homestead Award in recognition of their commitment to Indiana agriculture.

Among them was the Simmermaker family of Pulaski County

Pulaski County 4-H'ers earn state fair honors

INDIANAPOLIS - Pulaski County 4-H members have performed extremely well at the Indiana State Fair this year.

Over 200 projects were sent from Pulaski County (this includes livestock) and numerous 4-Hers received blue and merit ribbons. Some of the local 4-H members also received some of the highest honors from the State Fair.

The state fair runs Aug. 7-23 in Indianapolis.


Post News

West Central holds hearing on 2016 budget

FRANCESVILLE - The West Central School Board held a public hearing on its 2016 budget at its regular board meeting Thursday night (Sept. 3).

The budget includes the capital projects plan, transportation plan and bus replacement plan. Superintendent Don Street reviewed the line items in the budget. 

Walorski visits Winamac Community HS during 'Hoosier Education Tour'

Visited 10 schools across the Second Congressional District

MISHAWALA - After three days of touring schools across the Second Congressional District, Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) ended her ‘Walorski Education Tour’ in St. Joseph County at Penn High School Wednesday (Sept. 2).

The tour also included a stop at Winamac Community High School.

Head Start students learn body safety

Sherald and Verla Bonnell Family Educational Fund helps K-IRPC teach body safety 

From “No thank you” to “Leave me alone,” a K-IRPC Head Start guest taught children ages 3-5 how to say "no" in a session last spring.  

Thanks to a grant from the Sherald and Verla Bonnell Family Educational Fund at the Community Foundation of Pulaski County, K-IRPC was able to bring retired Indiana State Police Sergeant Terry Hall to the preschool to speak on the issue of body safety.

Winamac Council approves park use for NIPFP 'mini show' Sept. 24-26

Council also meets for Aug. 17 budget workshop

WINAMAC - The Winamac Town Council, at its August meeting, gave approval for the Northern Indiana Power From the Past (NIPFP), Inc. to use the town park the last weekend in September to cut logs and thresh wheat.

Due to the cancellation of the NIPFP's Antique Power Show in July, because of flooded park conditions, the organization needs to process the wheat and wants to cut the logs in a sort of "mini" show Sept. 24-26.

Renovation construction continues as EPCS open new school year

WINAMAC - With a major facilities renovation project underway on the school campus, the Eastern Pulaski Community School Board and administrators acknowledged the efforts of the corporation's custodial staff in their preparations for a new school year during the school board's regular meeting Aug. 10.

The comprehensive project, with an estimated price tag of $14 million, was approved last fall, with bids awarded this spring and major remodeling running through the summer.

CDC breaks ties with Chamber for time being

The Pulaski County Community Development Commission has broken its ties with the Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce for the time being due to a dispute over the "leadership, direction and internal struggles" of the Chamber, according to CDC director Nathan Origer.

The CDC voted at its August meeting to withdraw from its ex-officio seat on the Chamber board. Origer had held that seat.

Deputy coroner charged with theft/official misconduct

The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office has arrested former Pulaski County chief deputy coroner Tracy L. Rossman, 41, of Winamac on preliminary charges of theft and official misconduct.

Rossman was taken into custody at 2 p.m., Thursday (Aug. 20) and booked into the Pulaski County Justice Center, according to the sheriff's department. She was later released on bond.

Washington state man arrested for securities fraud in Pulaski County

Suspect accused of stealing $255,000 from investors

INDIANAPOLIS (Aug.14) - A Seattle, Wash. man, Joshua Ader, has been arrested on multiple felony charges in connection with local investor fraud through telephone solicitations, according to Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson's office.

Lawson credits Pulaski County Prosecutor Daniel Murphy for his work which helped lead to Ader's arrest.

Bailey, Denton, Fleury certified for Monterey Town Council

MONTEREY - The Pulaski County Democrats conducted a Town Convention for the Town of Monterey Saturday (Aug. 15) at the town hall. 

There were four candidates for three seats on the Town Council.  Candidates were: Emily Bailey, Doug Denton, Jim Fleury and Chris Fox. All but Denton were incumbents.