United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power delivered the annual Daniel Pearl Memorial Lecture at UCLA on Feb 23. She was introduced by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.
"I didn’t have the privilege of knowing Daniel Pearl, but I know from former journalistic colleagues who did that he had an incredible empathy for others and an intense desire to learn; qualities that he inherited from his parents, Ruth Pearl and UCLA’s own Professor Judea Pearl, who are here tonight," Power said in her opening. "Please join me in thanking them for giving the world Danny Pearl and for making sure we never forget him or what he stood for.
"I think their son would be very proud that the Foundation established in his memory is dedicated to inter-cultural understanding. Given the circumstances of Daniel Pearl’s death, we should recognize how remarkable that is. Much of the world’s sorrow can be traced to cycles of retribution, where one group seeks revenge for real or imagined wrongs done by another.
"Individuals become symbols, faiths become enemies, and hate becomes a currency of identity -- all that we have in common -- as fellow parents, fellow students, fellow believers -- all that we have in common becomes reduced to a catastrophic alchemy of Us versus Them."
The full text of Ambassador Power's remarks is posted at the United States Mission to the United Nations website.
Daniel Pearl was a prominent Wall Street Journal reporter when he was kidnapped and murdered by terrorists in Pakistan in early 2002. Pearl's father, UCLA computer science professor Judea Pearl, and his family launched the Daniel Pearl Foundation and established the lecture series at UCLA in 2002.