Originally published 05/08/2013
Julia F. Irwin is an Assistant Professor of History at the University of South Florida. She specializes in the history of U.S. relations with the 20th century world, with a particular focus on the role of humanitarianism in U.S. foreign affairs. She is the author of Making the World Safe: The American Red Cross and a Nation’s Humanitarian Awakening. Her current research focuses on the history of U.S. responses to global natural disasters.Each year on May 8, the Red Cross and Red Crescent societies of dozens of nations unite in celebration of World Red Cross/Red Crescent Day. This global event observes the birthday of Henry Dunant, one of the founders of the International Committee of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (ICRC), and commemorates the humanitarian principles that this organization represents. This year’s Red Cross Day is a particularly noteworthy occasion for the year 2013 marks the 150th anniversary of the ICRC’s founding.
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