June 26, 2010
“Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”
Give Shoes to President Bush
Muntadhar al-Zaidi, an Iraqi journalist working for the TV channel Al-Baghdadia, gave his shoes to President Bush on December 14. In this season of giving, should we do no less?
According to CNN, “reports suggest that al-Zaidi knows firsthand the anguish of the Iraq war. Al-Zaidi was kidnapped in November 2007 and released three days later, according to Reporters Without Borders. Al-Zaidi is from Baghdad’s Sadr City, one of the country’s biggest slums and the site of some of the conflict’s bloodiest battles.”
al-Zaidi is in detention, undergoing “testing” per CNN. Iraqis and journalists are demanding his immediate release, and hoping that testing does not mean torture.
Sending shoes to President Bush serves two purposes.
It reminds the President and the President-Elect that the war has cost the lives of over 1 million Iraqis. Sending shoes highlights civilians deaths, as has been done so brilliantly by the American Friends Service Committee in its traveling Eyes Wide Open exhibit.
It supports al-Zaidi and all Iraqis who have suffered due to the war.
Please think of adding a note to your package to the President. Please ask him to ‘pardon’ Muntadhar al-Zaidi by asking for his immediate release. And please send other appropriate messages to the President.
Here is the mailing address:
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
The White House has no rules against sending gifts to President Bush.
WhiteHouse.gov reads in pertinent part:
“Gifts & Items Sent to the White House
Items sent to the White House often experience a significant delivery delay and can be irreparably harmed due to the security screening process. Therefore, please do not send items of personal importance, such as family photographs, because items may be unable to be returned. [broken-in shoes seem like the perfect gift idea!]
We also request that gifts of a consumable nature, such as food, flowers, and other perishable items, not be sent to the White House due to the security screening process. While the President and Mrs. Bush and Vice President and Mrs. Cheney appreciate your thoughtfulness, they request that you look instead to your local community for opportunities to assist your neighbors in need.”
Where to get shoes?
Goodwill and Salvation Army have tons of inexpensive used shoes (size 10 may be right, but any size may do – after all, there are a lot of feet in the White House). If people have old shoes in their closets that are not suitable for Goodwill or Salvation Army, that would be even better. Sending children’s shoes would serve as a useful reminder to President Bush that his policies have killed Iraqi children. At the same time, please send only children’s shoes that are not suitable for giving to children, as we do not want to deprive children of their use. We also discourage sending shoes that people may need this winter. This is in keeping with the White House’s request that we consider our neighbors in need when sending gifts to the President.
The Humanitarian Tragedy Unfolding in Gaza
Special Report: 10 am (CST) Sun Dec 7 on KMNY-1360 AM
Also streaming Live on www.rationalradio.org
Editor’s Note: I condemn the Mumbai attacks and offer my condolences to the victims and their loved ones.It is with profound sadness that I have read accounts of ordeals of the victims.
This website has stood against wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the occupation of Palestine; it stands against all war, terror and injustice.
It is not known yet who was responsible for the Mumbai attacks. I hope that the perpetrators – including accomplices – are caught and tried. I also hope that any organizations involved in the massacre are ferreted out and ended as functioning bodies. If any governments were involved, I hope that such participation comes to light and that the government is brought before the UN, international courts and public opinion.
The New York Times and other mainstream media are reporting that the top seven execs at Goldman Sachs have foregone their year end bonuses.
The NY Times doesn’t mention that there are 443 partners at Goldman Sachs, leaving 436 who could still be eligible for bonuses, that were to average over $4.5 million per partner (before the top seven’s announcement), according to the Daily Mail. Read the rest of this entry »
[Ed. Comment: Obama's victory offers opportunities for organizing with grassroots activists for real change. The Obama organization, meanwhile, is planning to continue to organize Obama's followers using their massive private web networks and databases. We may see something we have not seen before where the President has his own private system of communicating and organizing that works around - and against - Congress, various levels of government and NGO's, MSM and the Administration itself. Read the rest of this entry »
Dahr Jamail on Iraq Eyewitness to Occupation at Socialism 2008
“Over half the total population of the country are either refugees, in need of emergency aid or dead.”
Dave Jamail gave a riveting talk on the occupation of Iraq at Socialism 2008 in Chicago on June 20. (Websites may embed this video.) Read the rest of this entry »
August 9, 2008
The Big Voice
by Kathy Kelly
About six months ago, Dan Pearson, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, swiveled around in his office chair in our tiny “headquarters” to ask what we thought about organizing a walk from Chicago to St. Paul, arriving just before the Republican National Convention. (see www.witnessagainstwar.org). Our dedicated group of volunteers joined Dan to plan a project, which, to me, is one of the best organized efforts I’ve ever encountered, all aimed at voicing a witness against war, which particularly in Wisconsin, where 3,500 National Guard troops are on alert for a call-up to combat duty, in Iraq, in 2009. Generally, three to five “day walkers” will join our core group of nine walkers. We walk about fifteen miles each day carrying signs that call for an end to the war and for keeping Wisconsin National Guard troops home. The sign I carry on this walk reads “Rebuild Iraq, rebuild the U.S.” Another of our signs, decorated with the obligatory elephant and donkey, reads “We hold both parties responsible.” We began walking on July 12, 2008 and will arrive in St. Paul Minnesota on August 30th. Read the rest of this entry »
Pictures From Summer Camp
by Kathy Kelly
July 27, 2008
At 6:45 a.m. this morning, our friend, Joel Gulledge, called from At-Tuwani, a village in the West Bank where he and another Christian Peacemaker Team (CPT) member were escorting Palestinian children to a local summer daycamp, protecting them from hostile Israeli settlers. A masked settler, carrying a slingshot, was threatening the children. While Jan Benvie, the other CPT team member, raced the children to safety, Joel paused to film what was happening. The masked settler caught up with Joel and attacked him. “He smashed my head again and again,” said Joel, “with my video camera, and punched me in the face, repeatedly, with his other hand.” Joel managed to remain standing. He didn’t fight back, but he screamed for help. The attacker broke Joel’s glasses, and Joel was bleeding from a gash over his eyes. When he called, he was waiting for an ambulance to arrive. Read the rest of this entry »
Hear Dave Zirin give a terrific and humorous talk on The People’s History of Sports. It’s packed with insights and little known history about sports in the US.
He spoke at the Socialism 2008 conference in Chicago on June 21, 2008. Read the rest of this entry »
by Kathy Kelly
July 5, 2008
Over the past two years, here in Amman, Jordan, I’ve regularly visited the family of Umm Hamdi, an Iraqi woman forced out of her native Iraq four years ago by terrifying death threats after her husband, very likely prey to that same threatened violence, disappeared. Although often met with the proverbial “cold shoulder” when trying to improve conditions for her family, she persists,–in the daytime she does child care for another family and, in the evening, she knits, sews, and makes handicrafts to sell in a local market. Umm Hamdi is tough, strong and fiercely determined to provide for her children. Nevertheless, she’s wretchedly insecure as a single mother and one more refugee among thousands in a country where resources to cope with her anxious needs are very slim. And she is worried for her son who is still in Iraq. Read the rest of this entry »
by Kathy Kelly
July 3, 2008
The city of Amman, Jordan, is awash with numerous colorful signs that proclaim independence, “Istiklal.” The word is found on posters and placards in store windows. It names a major thoroughfare, a hospital, and a shopping center. Appreciation for independence is palpable, and this could be said for numerous cities and towns throughout the region, including Iraq, where past struggles for independence are commemorated by naming buildings and streets “Istiklal.” It reflects the love of independence and the longing for it.
<a href=”http://technorati.com/claim/rzpzeczafz” rel=”me”>Technorati Profile</a>
Arrests for War Resistance Increase Again
By Bill Quigley.
“We can never forget that everything that Hitler did in Germany was ‘legal,’ and everything the Hungarian freedom fighters did was ‘illegal.’ It was ‘illegal’ to aid and comfort a Jew in Hitler’s Germany, but I am sure that if I lived in Germany during that time I would have comforted my Jewish brothers even though it was illegal…we who engage in nonviolent direct action are not the creators of tension. We merely bring to the surface the hidden tension that is already alive.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
There have been over 15,000 arrests for resistance to war since 2002. There were large numbers right after the run up to and invasion of Iraq. Recently, arrests have begun climbing again. Though arrests are a small part of anti-war organizing, their rise is an indicator of increasing resistance. Read the rest of this entry »
War Immemorial Day – No Peace for Militarized U.S.
By Bill Quigley. Bill is a human rights lawyer and law professor at Loyola University New Orleans. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Memorial Day is not actually a day to pray for U.S. troops who died in action but rather a day set aside by Congress to pray for peace. The 1950 Joint Resolution of Congress which created Memorial Day says: “Requesting the President to issue a proclamation designating May 30, Memorial Day, as a day for a Nation-wide prayer for peace.” (64 Stat.158).
Peace today is a nearly impossible challenge for the United States. The U.S. is far and away the most militarized country in the world and the most aggressive. Unless the U.S. dramatically reduces its emphasis on global military action, there will be many, many more families grieving on future Memorial days. Read the rest of this entry »
Please sign petition:
To: Rutgers University Administration and the New Brunswick Police Department
Defend the Rutgers 3!
On March 27, hundreds of Rutgers students and supporters participated in the Rutgers Walkout against the U.S. occupation of Iraq. Students walked out of classes, rallied on campus, marched through downtown New Brunswick, and spontaneously walked on to Route 18, a state highway. During the action, the police did not complain to student organizers, issue warnings to the crowd, or attempt to stop any of the actions. The non-violent protest, organized by 12 student organizations, ended without incident. Read the rest of this entry »
Weary of War? Don’t Collaborate.
By Kathy Kelly
April 17, 2008
An April 14th AP article by Anne Flaherty reported that U.S. Senators and Representatives are finding common ground in asking that Iraqis begin picking up the tab for the cost of war. Read the rest of this entry »
Thanks to Holly Near for giving permission to use her song “I Am Willing.”
I dedicate this video to the victims of war in Iraq and Afghanistan and do so in memory of the over a million who have been killed in these wars.
Joel Geier, Associate Editor of the International Socialist Review, spoke on “1968: Year of Revolt” at the University of Illinois, Champaign, IL on March 26, 2008. Read the rest of this entry »
Preventing War On Iran 20Feb08
PreventingWarOnIran20Feb08AImedia.mp3 1:48:52 . 49.8 meg
A public forum held at the American Legion Post 271 Hadley Ma
Background statements by :
Norma Akamatsu: Pioneer Valley Coalition to Prevent War in Iran,
Michael Klare 17:28 . 8.0 meg
Prof. of Peace and World Security Studies Hampshire College -Oil, Geopolitics and the History of U.S. Involvement,
Ira Helfand 6:05 . 2.8 meg Public Health Consequences of War On Iran – Physicians for Social Responsibility,
Amir Mikhchi 7:25 . 3.4 meg – An Iranian Viewpoint
Tyler Boudreau 16:03. 7.35 meg The Disparities of War – former Marine Capt. in Iraq
Congressman Richard Neal and Congressman John Olver.
When excerpting audio for broadcast you must attribute www.activeingredients.org
so that people may download the entire file
(Videos Originally published November 9, 2007)
Camilo Mejia, Iraq veteran and Chair of Iraq Veterans Against the War, gave with workshop with Martin Smith (Midwest Coordinator of IVAW) on “Soldiers Against the War from Vietnam to Iraq.” (22:22 minutes)[googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=3110713396710875617[/googlevideo]Martin Smith, Midwest Regional Coordinator of Iraq Veterans Against the War, gave the second presentation. (22:17 minutes) [googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7691224045008703433[/googlevideo]This meeting was one of many educational programs offered at the Midwest Socialist Conference, held at the University of Illinois at Chicago, November 3-4, 2007.Visit the website of Iraq Veterans Against the War and read Socialistworkerfor more information on this topic.Video © 2007 Charles Jenks; all rights reserved. Websites may embed with video for non-profit use. PeaceJournal.org
[PeaceJournal.org Editor's Note: This website supports the right of return of the Palestinian people to their confiscated properties in Israel. Lasting peace can only be achieved if justice is achieved, starting with a recognition of all Palestinian rights. Let's be clear as well that this website abhors and condemns the recent suicide bombing in Israel. At the same time, we recognize that the State of Israel has subjected the Palestinian people to terrible and tragic aggression over the years. Israel has committed war crimes, and it appears that it used so-called depleted uranium munitions in Lebanon. Israel is causing a deadly toll in Gaza. We condemn Israel's ongoing oppression of the Palestinian people. Israel must recognize the right of return; and we urge all sides to stop violence and negotiate a lasting peace with justice.]
Transcript of remarks by Senator Barack Obama
AIPAC Policy Forum (Chicago, Illinois)
March 2, 2007
SENATOR OBAMA: Thank you. Thank you so much. Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Read the rest of this entry »
Daniel Ellsberg 26Jan08
A Coup has occurred
Program 59:43 27.3 meg
Additional comments 2:18:23 . 55.4meg
The American Civil Liberties Union Massachusetts Chapter Held a Membership Conference Titled: Reclaiming Our Civil Liberties
Daniel Ellsberg, leaker of the Pentagon Papers, was the keynote speaker who opened the event. He stated that a coup has taken place in the United States, and warned that we are in the midsts of a permanent Police State. Congress is unlikely to do anything to stop its construction, unless assertive citizen action is taken NOW.
Recorded at Bently College by Ed Russell of ActiveIngredients.org
Text above by Ed Russell. PeaceJournal.org gladly hosts ActiveIngredients audio programs.
January 22, 2008
Valley peacemaker gets GCC award
by Diana Broncaccio Gazette Contributing Writer
GREENFIELD – A local woman who devoted 16 years to Traprock Peace Center and a group of eighth-graders who wrote their own music about the civil rights movement were award-winners at this year’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. observance ceremony at Greenfield Community College. Read the rest of this entry »
by Kathy Kelly
December 6, 2007
Traveling with as light a load as possible is something I long for during long stretches away from home. I routinely discard paperwork and periodicals, “recycle” gifts and give away clothing. But, here in Amman, Jordan, when a ten year-old Iraqi girl named Nauras gave me a camera, I quickly put it in the envelope where I keep my money, confident it would survive my next purge. Read the rest of this entry »
Martin Sanchez, Venezuelan Consul for Chicago, focused on recent developments in his talk on “The Struggle for Self-Determination in Venezuela.” (28:37 minutes) [googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4707899597089110674[/googlevideo]
He spoke at the plenary of the Midwest Socialist Conference held at the University of Illinois, Chicago on November 3-4, 2007. This was one of the regional socialist conferences taking place that weekend across the country.
Video © 2007 Charles Jenks; all rights reserved.
Camilo Mejia, Chair of the Board of Iraq Veterans Against the War, gave his personal reflections on confronting the US empire at the Midwest Socialist Conference. The Midwest Socialist Conference was hosted at the University of Illinois of Chicago from November 3-4, 2007. It was one of the regional socialist conferences taking place that weekend across the country. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EduY-sh2A7s[/youtube]
For more information, see:
Video © 2007 Charles Jenks; all rights reserved
Sherry Wolf, Editorial Board member of the International Socialist Review, asked activists to join the long term struggle at the plenary session of the Midwest Socialist Conference on November 3rd. [googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4124556379331288380[/googlevideo]
There are no quick solutions, she said. Making a commitment to the long term struggle is “the only way we are going to win,” she said. The Midwest Socialist Conference was hosted at the University of Illinois of Chicago from November 3-4, 2007. It was one of the regional socialist conferences taking place that weekend across the country.
For more information, see:
Video © 2007 Charles Jenks; all rights reserved
This week is “Green Week” on MSNBC. Today is “Paperless Monday.” We viewers have been treated with attractive women telling us how we, as citizens and consumers can go “paperless” (the amount of unsolicited junk mail I receive in my mail box infuriates me), and how we can reduce our dependence on fossil fuels (oil is only growing more precious and gas more expensive) and recycle, etc.
I was so pleased, however, when one young man made a pointed comment on catastrophic climate change as related to the massive amounts of gas and diesel fuel the Pentagon uses. I have been waiting for someone (because Al Gore with his family’s long attachment to Occidental Petroleum and the establishment has not) to make the connection between our Military Industrial Complex (M.I.C.) and the destruction of the planet’s environment. Read the rest of this entry »
Charles Peterson, student from the University of Massachusetts, gave this workshop on “Afghanistan, Islamophobia and the War on Terror” at the Campus Antiwar Network’s 5th Anniversary Summit at the University of Wisconsin/Madison from October 19-21. (23:42 minutes)[googlevideo]http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4922125869181239311[/googlevideo]
Delegates and guests from more than 20 schools across the country converged at the University of Wisconsin-Madison October 19-21 for the Fifth Anniversary Summit of the Campus Antiwar Network. Opening remarks from New Left Review editor Tariq Ali kicked off the weekend. Educational and organizational workshops and discussions on Saturday culminated with the evening plenary featuring Camilo Mejía, chairman-elect of the Board of Iraq Veterans Against the War. On Sunday, resolutions and points of unity were debated and decided in the voting portion of the summit.
For more information on the Summit and the Campus Antiwar Network, see www.campusantiwar.net
More video is coming: the evening key note speech by Camilo Mejia, chair elect of the Board of Iraq Veterans Against the War, with Liam Madden, president of the Boston chapter of IVAW. See www.ivaw.org for more information.
Video © 2007 Charles Jenks; all rights reserved. Contact: email@example.com. This video may be embedded in other websites for non-profit use, with attribution. Please let me know if you use it.
Why is the antiwar movement so weak?
October 12, 2007
ERIC RUDER analyzes the state of the national antiwar struggle and what lies ahead.
SINCE THE start of the Iraq war, antiwar sentiment has grown dramatically in the U.S. In 2003, 23 percent of the U.S. population thought the U.S. invasion was a mistake. Today, that figure stands at 58 percent.
Yet the antiwar movement had its largest mobilization before the war began, and more recent demonstrations have been smaller than those held several years previously, before public opinion had turned dramatically against the occupation. Read the rest of this entry »
Organized Money v. Organized People
by Cindy Sheehan
“At a time like this, scorching iron, not convincing argument, is needed.” Frederick Douglass“
Cindy’s campaign will prove that organized people can beat organized money” Reverend Lennox Yearwood; founder of the Hip Hop Caucus Read the rest of this entry »
As I sit sipping my morning cup of coffee and reflect on the anti-war protests sponsored by the Oct27 coalition (where I saw some good collaboration between UFPJ and ANSWER—at least in San Francisco—yea!), I have a few thoughts.
Yesterday, tens of thousands of activists from around Northern California, Northern Nevada and some from Southern Oregon attended the rally in my new hometown, San Francisco. Despite weather in the Eastern part of the country, I hear that the rallies all over the rest of the country were extremely well attended and the energy was high.
The throngs of humanity in San Francisco stretched out between the Civic Center to Dolores Park in a line that was over two miles long and it took over an hour for the last marcher to reach the endpoint. However, what does this all mean? Read the rest of this entry »
Iraq Veterans Against the War members Kelly Dougherty, Garett Reppenhagen, Camilo Mejía, Chanan Suárez Diaz and Martin Smith spoke on IVAW’s strategy to end the war against Iraq at the Socialism 2007 conference in Chicago on June 16.These talks started off a 2-part, 3 hour Roundtable – Iraq: the Soldiers’ Rebellion – by IVAW veterans. All recounted their personal stories of their military experience and how they became part of the veterans’ antiwar movement. Kelly Dougherty, Executive Director of IVAW and a co-founder, gave a slide presentation on IVAW’s strategy to end the war, based on IVAW’s “Consent Theory of Power.” This video clearly shows IVAW’s theory and practice for ending this tragic war by weakening support by the military, as well as other pillars of support, such as the public, Congress and the media.We’ve started with 5 videos of the main speakers, with videos of two commentators, Helen Redmond and Ashley Smith (International Socialist Organization).All websites are invited to embed these videos on their sites. We’d appreciate it if sites would simply let us know that they are embedding the videos. If any sites have difficulty embedding the code, we’d be happy to help you trouble shoot problems. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nv6vnxdpp7A[/youtube]Kelly Dougherty (20:42 minutes)[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=keKbzz2JKDU[/youtube] Garett Reppenhagen (11:42 minutes) [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2q290evMczw[/youtube] Camilo Mejia (17:53 minutes)[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uR_WPHrTDFI[/youtube] Chanan Suárez Diaz (17:37) [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdlOUSd_PUs[/youtube]Martin Smith (13:17 minutes)[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LsXxZ0gc9io[/youtube]Helen Redmond on the trauma of war (3:40)[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ygasq90lvp0[/youtube]Ashley SMith on how to end the war against Iraq (4:53) Learn more about the Socialism 2007 conference and see conference coverage with coverage of the Confronting Empire plenary session.The conference was sponsored by:International Socialist ReviewHaymarket BooksSocialist WorkerObrero SocialistaInternational Socialist OrganizationCenter for Economic Research and Social ChangeVideo recorded and edited by Charles JenksVideo © 2007 Charles Jenks; all rights reserved
What happened in Nahr Al Bared?
by Michael Birmingham
The systematic burning and destruction of a Palestinian camp in Lebanon – the media is banned and the world is silent?
Nahr Al Bared is a Palestinian refugee camp in the north of Lebanon which has been home to about 40,000 Palestinian people, most of whom are the children and grandchildren of those who left Palestine in 1948. Some like Abu Mohammad were born in Palestine. He was ten years old, and next year it will be sixty years since the formation of the State of Israel was achieved through the ethnic cleansing of Abu Mohammad and so many others from their home in Palestine. He told me this as the two of us sat alone in the pitch dark while rats ran around beside our chairs at his house. As I left he went in to sleep alone amongst ashes and rodents, with no neighbours around him, trying to believe that he still has something left to protect. Read the rest of this entry »
David Cline – Friend of Peace, RIP
“We are not the first group to call for impeachment. We have decided to add our voice to the call. All the reasons given for the invasion have shown themselves to be half-truths or misleading. The conflict continues to drag on taking the lives of our soldiers and innocent Iraqis. It is clear that George Bush does not intend to change course in an effort to right this great wrong. He has had enough time in his second term to begin a shift and he has not. It is time to remove him from office.” David Cline, then President of the VFP, March ‘05 Read the rest of this entry »
Open Letter to Progressive Opponents of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
from the Columbia Coalition Against the War
As Columbia only very recently announced, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will be speaking in Roone Arledge auditorium this Monday.
A number of students and student organizations have already announced plans for a protest rally the same day. We are not among them. We do not endorse Ahmadinejad or his views, many of which are inexcusable.
However, as opponents of a US military strike against Iran, we have serious concerns with the content of some of the hostility that has been expressed to his presence, and specifically with the planned protest. Read the rest of this entry »
From Socialist Worker
ALAN MAASS reports on the successful struggle to save Kenneth Foster.
IN AN inspiring victory for the anti-death penalty struggle, Kenneth Foster Jr. won clemency August 30, hours before he was scheduled to be executed in Texas’ death chamber.
For more than 10 years, politicians, prosecutors and judges at every level failed Kenneth. They all agreed that he should be put to death, even though everyone acknowledges he never killed anyone.
The only reason Kenneth is alive today is because he and his supporters refused to stop fighting. They exposed the injustices surrounding his case and forced the political and media establishment to pay attention. As Kenneth’s lawyer Keith Hampton put it, “Extra-legal means work.” Read the rest of this entry »
RANGEL SHUTS THE DOOR ON KENNETH FOSTER
by Ben Davis
August 28, 2008
Barring a miracle – and miracles are in short order on Texas’ death row – Kenneth Foster is likely to die Thursday. The battle around his case has been a heroic one. Kenneth’s horrifying story of being condemned to death on a misapplication of an already draconian legal monstrosity – Texas’ “Law of Parties,” which enshrines guilt by association – as well as his own clear-eyed and articulate work telling his story and speaking out for others, have won him a host of supporters.
Foremost, of course, there is his family, including his heartbreakingly articulate daughter Nydesha – who has never touched her father, and now may never do so. There is the Coalition to Save Kenneth Foster, a group of activists who have rallied to his defense. There is also the New York hip-hop collective the Welfare Poets, and Kenneth’s wife, the Dutch hip-hop artist Jav’lin, who dedicated the moving song Walk With Me on the Poets’ Cruel and Unusual Punishment CD to her husband’s struggle to live. Mumia Abu-Jamal, from his own death row confinement, wrote in solidarity, while Amnesty International called the case “a new low for Texas” – and that is low indeed. Read the rest of this entry »
We Shouldn’t Be Causing This
by Kathy Kelly
August 22, 2007
Here in Amman, Jordan, a British teenager, Sonia, age 12, recently spent four days interviewing and befriending Iraqi youngsters close to her in age. She wanted to learn, firsthand, about the experiences of Iraqi youngsters who have fled war and violence in their home country.
A versatile and talented child, Sonia loves to play the trumpet and perform classical Indian dances, the latter being somewhat unusual for a Muslim girl. When she was eight years old, shortly before the U.S. and the U.K. attacked Iraq, she wrote a poem urging respect for the rights of Iraqi children whose lives and hopes would be destroyed by war. The poem reached many people, intensifying efforts of peace activists to stop the war before it started. Sonia continued her efforts on behalf of Iraqi children, even founding an organization called “Children Against War.” (www.j-n-v.org/Action/Appeal_Children_Against_War_delegation_July_2007.htm – 36k)
In the spring of 2007, she asked her mother if she could raise money through music and dance performances, to pay for a trip to Amman, so that she could film Iraqi children speaking for themselves. After talking it over with other peace activists, her mother agreed to accompany Sonia, and so, last week, they arrived here for a four day trip. Read the rest of this entry »
GET TO WORK!
By Kathy Kelly
August 12, 2007
“GET A JOB!” These three words are very familiar to activists bearing signs calling for an end to war, whether standing on street corners, walking along highways, holding vigils, or nonviolently occupying the offices of elected representatives. Listen to the activists, and you’ll often hear, “We’re doing our job. We’re trying.”
I’m convinced that our work must always have one foot placed in nonviolent resistance to the forces that design and wage wars, with the other foot standing among people who bear the physical and mental affliction caused by these forces. Today, I’m thinking especially about two young women who found themselves in nightmare circumstances because, in their view, they simply wanted to have a job. Read the rest of this entry »
She Stands At Every Door
By Kathy Kelly
August 6, 2007
At a small, informal school in the basement of a church in Amman, many strings of colorful paper cranes bedeck walls and windows. The school serves children whose families have fled Iraq. Older children who come to the school understand the significance of the crane birds. Claudia Lefko, of Northampton, MA, who helped initiate the school, told them Sadako’s story. The Japanese child survived the bombing of Hiroshima, but suffered from radiation sickness. In a Japanese hospital, she wanted to fold 1,000 origami crane birds, believing that by doing so she could be granted a special wish: hers was that no other child would ever suffer as she did. Sadako died before completing the task she’d set for herself, but Japanese children then folded many thousands more cranes, and the story has been told for decades in innumerable places, making the delicate paper cranes a symbol for peace throughout the world. Read the rest of this entry »
Day 11 of our Journey for Humanity and Accountability
found our caravan group at the Charlottesville, VA
home of David Swanson who is director of
AfterDowningStreet.org. I got to know David after my
group Gold Star Families for Peace became one of the
first organizations to sign on to ADS when the memos
were exposed on May 1, 2005. That collaboration led to
what I thought was going to be the downfall of BushCo:
the fact that on July 23, 2001, there was a secret
meeting at 10 Downing Street that pretty much said
that the invasion of Iraq was a foregone conclusion
and the intelligence was going to have to be “fixed”
around the policy of pre-emptive invasion. Read the rest of this entry »
Torture is a War Crime
Journey for Humanity and Accountability
Today our Journey took us to Ft. Benning, Ga, where
the cancer of the School of Americas (WINSEC) is
housed. I have written on torture before and I believe
that BushCo’s policy of imprisoning people without
their basic due process and torturing them is one of
the grossest breeches of international and American
law and one of the overriding reasons that they should
The School of Torture has graduated many egregious
violators of human rights like Panamanian drug lord,
U.S. CIA employee, and Bush family friend (until he
became an enemy), Manuel Noriega. If there is one
issue that should unite Americans it should be against
torture. Incredibly, we still have neighbors in our
communities who believe that torture is correct,
humane and valuable. However to say torture is “wrong”
is like saying the sky is blue. Torture is inherently
wrong. Torture is pure evil. Torture is an
abomination. Torture is disordered and demented.
Torture is sick, sick, sick! Read the rest of this entry »
Summer of Love ‘07
On a Journey for Humanity
The other day I came out of my short retirement due to
yet another Bush flagrant abuse of power. We decided
that we would walk from Atlanta to DC to gather a
people’s movement for humanity. The longer BushCo are
in office the less chance we have of recovering the
heart and soul of our nation, saving our soldiers and
the people of Iraq and Afghanistan, and saving the
planet from corporate and individual waste and
pollution. Impeachment, removal from office, and in a
perfect world: incarceration for the criminals against
humanity, are urgent and necessary steps that need to
be taken today. Read the rest of this entry »
[July 3, 2007 note by Cindy: Since I sent out the last piece, the Rev's hearing has been postponed for a month...so our walk will be starting on July 10th from Camp Casey...details TBA.]
Call Out the Instigator
Call out the Instigator
Because there’s something in the air
We got to get together sooner or later
Because the revolution’s here
You know it’s right!
I’m not backing off. I tried to remove myself from the
political realm of the US, what BushCo is turning into
an Evil Empire, but the blatant audacity of George
commuting Scooter’s sentence (he’s not ruling out a
full pardon —and you know he will) has dragged me
kicking and screaming back in. I can’t sit back and
let this BushCo drag our country further down into the
murky quagmire of Fascism and violence, taking the
rest of the world with them! Read the rest of this entry »
How to Destroy an African-American City in Thirty Three Steps – Lessons from Katrina
By Bill Quigley. Bill Quigley is a human rights lawyer and law professor at Loyola University New Orleans. You can reach Bill at Quigley@loyno.edu
Step One. Delay. If there is one word that sums up the way to destroy an African-American city after a disaster, that word is DELAY. If you are in doubt about any of the following steps – just remember to delay and you will probably be doing the right thing.
Step Two. When a disaster is coming, do not arrange a public evacuation. Rely only on individual resources. People with cars and money for hotels will leave. The elderly, the disabled and the poor will not be able to leave. Most of those without cars – 25% of households of New Orleans, overwhelmingly African-Americans – will not be able to leave. Most of the working poor, overwhelmingly African-American, will not be able to leave. Many will then permanently accuse the victims who were left behind of creating their own human disaster because of their own poor planning. It is critical to start by having people blame the victims for their own problems. Read the rest of this entry »
Turn, Turn, Turn
To everything there is a season.
A time for war, a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes, Hebrew Scriptures
I wish I could say I thought of something profound as
I saw the president and his wife’s picture on that
billboard on Hwy 317 in my rear view mirror on my way
out of Crawford today. I will be back for the final
weekend farewell to Camp Casey on July 6th, but I
won’t be back as the owner of property there, or as a
leader of the American peace movement. Read the rest of this entry »
Open Letter to Cindy Sheehan: We need you now more than ever
from the Campus Antiwar Network
We remember first hearing about you standing up to Bush in Crawford, Texas with admiration and hope. Just months before he had been re-elected, not because the majority of people supported the war, but because John Kerry offered us nothing for which to vote. He provided no alternative to the neocon strategy of more war and barbarism.
Instead, you did. Read the rest of this entry »