Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

Saturday, October 05, 2013

THE TARGET VILLAGE



Mikami Chie's The Target Village will be showing at the Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival on Oct. 12 and Oct. 15, 2013.

The film follows Okinawan opposition to the construction of U.S. military helipads near the eco-village of Takae, located in an ecologically sensitive area of Yanbaru, a subtropical rainforest in the northern part of the main island.

The US military appropriated land in Yanbaru during the postwar period "Bayonets and Bulldozers" base expansion throughout Okinawa.  The beautiful biodiverse region, a World Heritage Site candidate, is used  by US Marines for "jungle training." Locals were forced to dress up like Vietnamese during the Vietnam War, for target practice and other war games.

Residents have been protesting V-22 Osprey helipad construction since the plans were announced in 2006.  WWF Japan details numerous wildlife, plant life and a gentle way of life under threat.

REMEMBERING THE STORIES





Throughout my life, since living at Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota as a boy, I've been studying the history, spirituality, and worldview of Native Americans.  In particular the Lakota people.

I am currently reading a book called "The Dull Knifes of Pine Ridge" which is the true story of a century of Lakota Sioux life - an epic journal of cultural identity found, lost, and found again - told through the voices of a single family: the Dull Knifes of Pine Ridge, South Dakota.

Many times over the years I've read about the massacre at Wounded Knee on the Pine Ridge reservation on December 29, 1890. This book is taking me deeper into the story.  Personal accounts give shocking reality to the events at Wounded Knee.  In all 290 were slaughtered by the US Army's 7th Cavalry, which just 14 years earlier had been boldly defeated by Indians at the infamous Battle of the Little Bighorn.  The 7th Cavalry was heavily armed that day at Wounded Knee with newly developed Hotchkiss cannons and Gatling guns - the massacre turned into a field test of these new weapons technologies.

Those massacred at Wounded Knee were led by an old and dieing Chief Big Foot.  The starving Indians were attempting to move from one part of the reservation to another to escape an enormous military mobilization intended to put down the last ditch effort by the people to use the spiritual Ghost Dance to hang onto their culture and traditional way of life.  But even this was considered a threat by the US government and they responded to the Ghost Dance movement by first assassinating Sitting Bull in his log cabin on the reservation and then killing the defenseless people at Wounded Knee.

The weak, hungry, ill-clothed, and poorly armed Indian people had no chance up against the overwhelming power of the US Army.  Just like we have more recently seen in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya the US military at Wounded Knee killed innocent people, mostly women and children, with unrestrained violence.

The army eventually conducted an "official investigation" (notice the similarity to current times) of Wounded Knee, initiated by the Congress.  Written by Gen. E. D. Scott, the report concluded:
"There is nothing to conceal or apologize for in the Wounded Knee Battle - beyond the killing of a wounded buck by a hysterical recruit.  The firing was begun by the Indians and continued until they stopped - with the one exception noted above.

"That women and children were casualties was unfortunate but unavoidable, and most must have [been killed] from Indian bullets...The Indians at Wounded Knee brought their own destruction as surely as any people ever did.  Their attack on the troops was as treacherous as any in the history of Indian warfare, and that they were under a strange religious hallucination is only an explanation, not an excuse."

The US government later awarded twenty Medals of Honor to soldiers (heroes?) who had participated in the massacre at Wounded Knee.

Following the massacre many Indian leaders on the reservation were rounded up and moved to Fort Sheridan, Illinois for imprisonment.  On March 14, 1891, a newspaper reported: "Buffalo Bill has secured the consent of the government and will within a few days start for Europe with the hostile Sioux now held at Fort Sheridan.  They are to be a part of his Wild West show."

The government essentially sold the Indians into slavery. Even then our government did the bidding of the "business" community.

FUKUSHIMA UPDATE & URGENT ACTION NEEDED



Journalist, author, activist and historian Harvey Wasserman has been reporting on, and participating in, the nuclear free movement for decades. In that time, by his judgment, only one other event matches the danger to the world posed by the Cuban Missile Crisis. That event is the ongoing nuclear disaster at Fukushima.

Haven't heard about it in the corporate media? That's because the deadly and dying global nuclear industry and its allies don't want you to know.

That's why he has organized a petition drive to the UN advocating international expert oversight of, and participation in, management of the Fukushima crisis.

In this interview, he explains why we must all be involved in this world-historical challenge to human and planetary survival. Sign the petition here: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/the-...

Friday, October 04, 2013

CREATING THE MIND COLONIZATION CULTURE



Introducing the series "The Century of the Self" which is about how those in power have used Freud's theories to try and control the dangerous crowd in an age of mass democracy. Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, changed the perception of the human mind and its workings profoundly.

His influence on the 20th century is widely regarded as massive. The documentary describes the impact of Freud's theories on the perception of the human mind, and the ways public relations agencies and politicians have used this during the last 100 years for their engineering of consent. Among the main characters are Freud himself and his nephew Edward Bernays, who was the first to use psychological techniques in advertising. He is often seen as the father of the public relations industry.

Freud's daughter Anna Freud, a pioneer of child psychology, is mentioned in the second part, as well as Wilhelm Reich, one of the main opponents of Freud's theories. Along these general themes, The Century of the Self asks deeper questions about the roots and methods of modern consumerism, representative democracy and its implications. It also questions the modern way we see ourselves, the attitude to fashion and superficiality.

Happiness Machines. Part one documents the story of the relationship between Sigmund Freud and his American nephew, Edward Bernays who invented Public Relations in the 1920s, being the first person to take Freud's ideas to manipulate the masses.

The Engineering of Consent. Part two explores how those in power in post-war America used Freud's ideas about the unconscious mind to try and control the masses. Politicians and planners came to believe Freud's underlying premise that deep within all human beings were dangerous and irrational desires.

There is a Policeman Inside All of Our Heads, He Must Be Destroyed. In the 1960s, a radical group of psychotherapists challenged the influence of Freudian ideas, which lead to the creation of a new political movement that sought to create new people, free of the psychological conformity that had been implanted in people's minds by business and politics.

Eight People Sipping Wine In Kettering. This episode explains how politicians turned to the same techniques used by business in order to read and manipulate the inner desires of the masses. Both New Labor with Tony Blair and the Democrats led by Bill Clinton, used the focus group which had been invented by psychoanalysts in order to regain power.

SPACE WEEK EVENTS




October 5-12, 2013

Keep Space for Peace Week
International Week of Protest to

Stop the Militarization of Space



No Missile Defense
No to NATO Expansion
No Syria Attack
End Afghanistan Occupation
Stop the Drones Surveillance & Killing
No Nuclear Power in Space or on Earth
End Corporate Domination of Foreign/Military Policy
Convert the Military Industrial Complex


  • Albuquerque, New Mexico (Oct 12) Drones and endless war protest at Kirtland AFB, Truman Gate, 11:00 am Stop the War Machine  stopthewarmachine@comcast.net   
  • Andover, Massachusetts (Oct 10)  Vigil at Raytheon missile plant, 7-8 am at the front gate on Rte 133 marykatespeace@yahoo.com 
  • Asheville, North Carolina (Oct 8) Screening of documentary film The Ghosts of Jeju putting in context the pivot to Asia-Pacific and how US space domination is used to direct all Pentagon operations. Ken Ashe (VFP) will speak on his trip to Jeju Island.  7:00 p.m. Lord Auditorium, Pack Memorial Library. Sponsoring groups New South Network of War Resisters, WNC PSR, members of WILPF Disarmament Task Force.  newsouthnetwork@gmail.com 
  • Bath Iron Works, Maine (Oct 5) Vigil across from administration building on Washington Street (Navy Aegis destroyers outfitted with “missile defense” systems built at BIW) 11:30-12:30 am   Smilin’ Trees Disarmament Farm (207) 763-4062
  • Bath Iron Works, Maine (Oct 19) Demonstration at “Christening” of new Navy “stealth” destroyer 10:00 am on Washington St.  Sponsors: Maine Veterans For Peace, Smilin’ Trees Disarmament Farm, Maine Bring Our War $$ Home Campaign   (207) 443-9502
  • Berkeley, California (Oct 6) Public forum entitled Pacific Pivot and the TPP: What are they and what shall we do about them? St. John’s Presbyterian at 2727 College Ave. epicalc@lmi.net
  • Birmingham, England (Oct 7) Drones Public meeting The Military use of Drones at Queens College, 7.30pm with Brian Terrell, Queen’s Foundation for Ecumenical Theological Education. j.hull@queens.ac.uk
  • Boston, Massachusetts (Oct 18) Showing of The Ghosts of Jeju documentary film at BU School of Theology  BU 19, 745 Commonwealth Ave  7:00 pm tremregi@gmail.com
  • Cambridge, Massachusetts (Oct 17) Showing of The Ghosts of Jeju documentary film by UpandOut Group at 243 Broadway, 7:00 pm tremregi@gmail.com
  • Cardigan, Wales (Oct 6) Benefit Concert for Medical Aid for Palestinians, Scene Red plus Guests Bob Fish, Bill Vester, Small World Theatre, 8pm Poster details. For more information contact Maya Evans or on 07973 484202 or Penny Walker or on 07414 465695
  • Colorado Springs, Colorado (Oct 8)  From Drones to Phones high tech warriors break the law forum at the Penrose Library, 7-9 pm  bill.sulzman@gmail.com
  • Colorado Springs, Colorado (Oct 11) Banners outside Schriever AFB, super secret home of the Space Warfare Center with heavy involvement in Cyber War operations, 3:30 - 4:30  bill.sulzman@gmail.com
  • Coventry, England (Oct 9) The Real Cost of Drone Warfare – with Maya Evans & Penny Walker, Friends Meeting House, Hill St. Coventry CV1 4AN, 7.30pm – 9pm.
  • RAF Croughton, England (Oct 5) Rally at U.S. satellite communication base, March to main gate 1 mile - starts Croughton village 12.00 midday, Returns 3:00 pm, Oxfordshire Peace Campaign, oxonpeace@yahoo.co.uk  
  • Dublin, Ireland (Oct 9-12) Screening of documentary film The Ghosts of Jeju at The Exchange Dublin, Temple Bar.  Oct 9 at 8:30 pm; Oct 10 at 8:00 pm; Oct 11 at 5:00 pm; Oct 12 at 5:00 pm
  • Gainesville, Florida (Oct 29) Showing of The Ghosts of Jeju documentary film at the Civic Media Center.  Mark1343@juno.com
  • Fairbanks, Alaska (Oct 10) Public forum No Winged Robot Assassins North at Noel Wien Public Library to discuss alternatives uses for Eielson AFB (Joint Alaska Pacific Range Complex) where drones will be tested. 7:00 pm  Mulford.rob@gmail.com
  • Fort Mead, Maryland (Oct 5) The Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore will vigil at the National Security Agency (NSA) at noon.  Contact Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore at mobuszewski@verizon.net   or 410-366-1637
  • Fylingdales, England (Oct 5) North York Moors walk/protest/vigil at U.S. Star Wars radar facility meets at noon at the Hole of Horcum car park on A169.  For more details and transport arrangements  info@yorkshirecnd.org.uk
  • Harrogate, England (Oct 10) Showing of documentary The Ghosts of Jeju at the Harrogate Friends Meeting House with Andrew Jackson and Lei (who visited Jeju) providing Korean food and speaking. 7:00 pm mail@caab.corner.org.uk 
  • Hendersonville, North Carolina (Oct 7)  Presentation to Four Seasons Toastmasters on space issues  standienst@morrisbb.net
  • Indore, India (Oct 4-6) International Conference on Gandhi, Disarmament & Development that will feature Abolition of Nuclear Weapons and Prevention of an Arms Race in the Outer Space issues.  Global Network convener Dave Webb (UK) among speakers.  (Indian Organizing Committee will assume the local cost of accommodation and food.)   jnrao193636@gmail.com
  • Jeju Island, South Korea (Oct 23-24) International Women’s Peace Pilgrimage & Solidarity Mission to Jeju Island, Peace for Life faith-based movement, www.peaceforlife.org
  • Kaua`i, Hawai`i  (Oct 25) The Kaua`i Alliance for Peace and Social Justice will be showing The Ghosts of Jeju, coinciding with Keep Space for Peace Week protests.  It will be shown at 6:30 pm at the Kapa`a Library.  koikoi1@hawaii.rr.com
  • King of Prussia/Valley Forge, Pennsylvania (Oct 12)  Protest at Lockheed Martin, #1 war profiteer, Drone war technology manufacturer (drone aircraft, Hellfire missiles, command satellites). We Will Not Be Silent...Lockheed Martin is a making a killing! Mall & Goddard Boulevards. For more information: Brandywine Peace Community, 610-544-1818 brandywine@juno.com
  • Leicester, England (Oct 8) The Real Cost of Drone Warfare – with Maya Evans & Penny Walker, The Muslim Khatri Association Centre, 1 Connaught St Leicester LE2 1FJ. 7.30pm – 9pm. For more information contact Maya Evans or on 07973 484202 or Penny Walker or on 07414 465695
  • Lincoln, England (Oct 6) Waddington 6 drone pre-trial event, Lincoln.   More details from Drone Campaign Network
  • Lincoln, England (Oct 7) Magistrates’ Court. Trial of the Waddington 6 begins.The 6 entered the RAF base in June and have been assured that their arguments will be listened to in full and they want to use the trial as an opportunity to get as much media coverage as possible for ‘Putting Drones on Trial’. They will be using the recently published paper by Public Interest Lawyers about the illegality of drones. Supporters welcome. More details from Drone Campaign Network
  • London, England (Oct 4) Screening of documentary film The Ghosts of Jeju at Brunei Gallery B102, SOAS University of London, 5:30 pm  493012@soas.ac.uk
  • Maine Drone Peace Walk (Oct 10-19) Peace walk led by Nipponzan Myohoji from Limestone to Bath, Maine called Preserve our Privacy: No Drone Spying in Maine. The walk will protest drone surveillance and the possible testing of weaponized drones in Maine. Sponsored by Maine Campaign to Bring Our War $$ Home and Maine VFP.   globalnet@mindspring.com
  • Menwith Hill, England (Oct 8) Demonstration at NSA Spy Base in Yorkshire focused on drones in particular and US missile defense in general. 6-8 pm.   Sponsored by CAAB  mail@caab.corner.org.uk  or 01423 884076
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota (Oct 5) No war, No Drones, No Syria Intervention, Stop Attacks on Civil Liberties Protest at Lake Street & Hiawatha Ave, 1:00-2:00 pm, Initiated by: Minnesota Peace Action Coalition and endorsed by many local groups ajdale98@yahoo.com
  • Montrose, California (Oct 11) Vigil with space week posters at Montrose Shopping Park, Oceanview Blvd & Honolulu Ave rmedford@ucla.edu
  • New York City, New York (Oct 7) Stand Against War and for Our Rights. On the 12th anniversary of the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, we will gather to discuss our right to assemble peacefully, our opposition to war, and our right to remember. Begins at 5:00 pm at Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza, 55 Water Street.  www.stopthesewars.org
  • Oslo, Norway (Oct 10) Seminar: An arms-free Space - Norway´s role in tomorrow´s warfare. The Norwegian Peace House, Møllergata 12, 0179 Oslo, 17:00-18:30 pm. Organizers: The Norwegian Peace Association, Women´s International League for Peace and Freedom, Norway. Speakers: Edel Havin Beukes (WILPF, Norway); Bård Wormdal (journalist and author of Satellite War); Alexander Harang and Taran Strand (Norwegian Peace Association): Campaign to Stop Killer Robots, and The Norwegian Peace Association´s Drone Campaign 2013 taran@fredslaget.no
  • Oxford, England (Oct 10) Oxford Catholic Worker / Drone Wars UK The Menace of Drone Warfare with Brian Terrell, 7.30pm Peace House, Paradise St, Oxford OX1 1lD. More details from Drone Campaign Network
  • Pentagon, Washington DC (Oct 7) Keep Space for Peace signs will be held at weekly Dorothy Day Catholic Worker Pentagon morning vigil 7:00-8:00 am artlaffin@hotmail.com
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Oct 13) - Showing of The Ghosts of Jeju documentary film at Brandywine Peace Community Potluck Supper & Program, University Lutheran Church, 3637 Chestnut Street. For more information 610-544-1818 brandywine@juno.com 
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Oct 5) The Anti-Drones coalition (WILPF, AFSC, Code Pink, Anti-War Committee of Thomas Merton Center) will table at the Contemporary Arts Anti-Violence exhibition  with flyers and information on drone warfare and other anti-war issues.  edith.bell4@verizon.net
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (Oct 6) The Anti-Drones coalition presents Music by Terry Griffith (Irish Rebel Songs), Political Art by Russ Fedorka, Poetry, Political Karaoke, Open Mike, 6:30-9:30 pm, The new AVA Lounge (304 N. Craig St.) edith.bell4@verizon.net
  • Salida, Colorado (All week) Posting space week posters around the community
  • Stockholm, Sweden (Oct 2) Gathering in front of the Swedish Parliament Building at Mynttorget from 2-5 pm. Banner with the text: Drones kill. Speaker Agneta Norberg.  In the evening at Workers Study Association Building meeting with Swedish Parliamentarians: Anna-Lena Sörensson, Socialdemocrat Party,Walter Mutt, The Environmental party, Hans Linde, Left Party.  lappland.norberg@gmail.com
  • Sunnyvale, California (Oct 25) Weekly vigil at Lockheed-Martin headquarters dedicated to Keep Space for Peace. This vigil is held 4th Friday of the month for years.  Lockheed-Martin is a major aerospace weapons, drones and missile manufacturing facility. Noon to 1:00 pm on corner of Mathilda and Java (off 101 by car, or one block from the Lockheed-Martin light rail stop on the Winchester/ Mountain View line) Pgycoleman@aol.com
  • Sydney, Australia (Oct 7) Rally at the RAN Sea Power Conference and exposition PACIFIC 2013 (Arms Trading), Outside the Sydney convention & Exhibition Centre, 11 am till 12.30 pm, No more subs, No Naval build-up to suit the US pivot to the Asia Pacific, Sponsored by Anti-Bases Campaign, IPAN NSW denis@anti-bases.org
  • Tucson, Arizona (Oct 8) Peace vigil from 6:30 - 7:30 am at Raytheon Missile Systems, Hermans Road entrance to the plant (3rd traffic light south of Valencia on Nogales Highway, the extension of South 6th Avenue). Join the Raytheon Peacemakers as we demonstrate against war and those who profit from it.  nukeresister@igc.org
  • Weld County, Colorado (Oct 12) Vigil at Minuteman III missile silo N-8 in Weld County.  The N-8 silo houses one of 49 h-bomb armed missiles on 24/7 alert in Colorado, part of the total fleet of 450 MM III missiles in the US, noon to 1:00 pm  bill.sulzman@gmail.com
  • Worcester, Massachusetts (Oct 9) Showing of The Ghosts of Jeju documentary film by Catholic Worker at 52 Mason Street 7:00 pm  tremregi@gmail.com

Keep Space for Peace Week is co-sponsored by the Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom, KnowDrones.com and the Drone Campaign Network (UK)


Resources:

  • Order the new documentary video The Ghosts of Jeju that puts the Navy base struggle on Jeju Island in context of US military pivot to Asia-Pacific and illustrates how US space domination is used to direct all Pentagon operations. http://www.theghostsofjeju.net/

OUR MOTHER EARTH FROM SPACE



As we move into Keep Space for Peace Week let's get an overview of what it means to be living on our little Mother Earth spaceship.

Our consciousness must evolve so that we see that all life on Earth - all the people, the animals, the plant life, the water, air - is sacred and spiritually connected.  There are no national borders on our planet.

As we move into space we must think about what kind of seed we take with us from our planet.  A good seed or a bad seed?

Do we want to take the seed of greed, war and violence with us into the heavens?

As we learn to love our Mother Earth - to feel in unity with all life forms - then we are free to imagine our place in the cosmos in a new way.

Thursday, October 03, 2013

FINALLY YOU ARE ALL WAKING UP



Former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura......also a former professional wrestler and Navy seal.

He is considering running for president and calling for revolution.  Ventura also speaks eloquently about the assassination of JFK.

DRONE DEBATE IN SYRACUSE



Legislation that would prevent law enforcement from using drones over the skies of Syracuse, New York has been put on hold.

Communities all over the nation are being enticed to allow drones by the dangling of the green frog skin $$$$$ before their eyes.

Desperate for anything that will create jobs, and knowing that military money is the only game in town, local authorities are willing to give up civil liberties to attract more military oriented jobs.

WHO CAN WE TRUST?


I went to Bath City Hall last night to attend another city council workshop on the request by General Dynamics Corporation (GD) for a tax break (called TIF) over the next 25 years.  GD owns Bath Iron Works (BIW) here in the city where destroyers for the Navy are built.

Since the late 1990's BIW has received $197 million in tax cuts from the state and the city of Bath.  During that time their employment has dropped from about 8,000 to below 5,500 today.  They've used alot of the funds to help mechanize the operation thus reducing the need for workers while profits grow.

The workshop was led off by BIW's lawyer (Jon Fitzgerald) on this TIF request.  He went on the offensive and claimed that those who were suggesting this was "corporate welfare" were off base.  Then he suggested that any comments about the annual executive compensation of GD's top CEO is also out of bounds.  Then he talked about how BIW has paid $100 million in local taxes over these years.

Three of us from the local community stood up to speak during the public comment period of the workshop.  In the past two workshops public comments were not allowed.  Both of those sessions were held after 9:00 pm, last time I was the only person from the public in the room.  This time the workshop was held at 6:30 pm.  So we are making some progress here.

When I spoke I challenged Mr. Fitzgerald's claim that the CEO executive compensation issue was not relevant.  I said, "I want to remind everyone that last year the top CEO at General Dynamics was paid $18 million in compensation.  Compare that with the annual municipal budget of Bath – about $15 million.  So one guy at General Dynamics got paid more than our entire city budget – yet General Dynamics says they need more money from local taxpayers in order to stay competitive. I say tell them to cut executive compensation first, before coming to the citizens of Bath for another hand out.  Our city should request that General Dynamics open their books for public scrutiny if they want to claim they need more corporate welfare."

That last line I got from a BIW worker who recently called me.  I'd only just met him and we'd never spoken before about this TIF issue.  He told me that a recent Op-Ed I wrote for a local paper hung in his shop for three weeks taped to the wall.  He told me next time I spoke at city hall that I should ask to see their corporate ledgers.  So I did.

I also told the city council last night that, "When we gathered signatures opposing this TIF at the polls during our recent special state senate election we got 370 signatures.  Many BIW workers were eager to sign the petition.  Now why would scores of BIW workers sign the petition?  We heard them repeatedly say that the workers are being squeezed by General Dynamics.  One woman said she is now doing the job of three workers and that wages are frozen for the next year or more."

That day we had our table at the polls collecting signatures and we taped a large sign to the front of the table that read "TIF of the Iceberg".  We got that slogan from another worker at BIW.

I've heard that Mr. Fitzgerald has been asking some folks if they know that I am a peacenik kind of guy - of course making the point that they might not want to be publicly associated with such a scruffy character.  But if they think this campaign is coming from me then BIW and GD are making a big mistake.  The frustration and anxiety about another round of corporate welfare for BIW is coming from the community.  I am just helping to give voice for people who feel they can't speak out for obvious reasons - including many BIW workers.

Last night our third speaker asked the city council which side their expert TIF lawyer, hired to protect the city's interests, was actually working for.  The lawyer was speaking in legal/technical mumbo-jumbo and virtually no one understood her evasive words.  That question summed up this whole TIF movement in Bath - who can we trust to really protect the people from the big corporate interests?  

The next step is for our growing local citizens committee to organize a community forum in early-November on this TIF question.  We'd hold it at city hall and last night invited the city council to attend.  Two members of the council spoke in favor of such an event. 

THE WELSH DRAGONS ARE BACK




There is a big fight going on in the UK over Britain's Trident nuclear submarine replacement program.  The subs are based at Faslane, Scotland and people in that nation want them out.  Growing activism across the UK is driving debate about whether or not the UK needs the "nuclear option" and how they can afford to waste their precious resources on such insanity.

Among those who are cranking up the action is the peace movement in Wales (Cymru).

Here is a report from today's event:

Main gate of Nuclear Weapons Factory blockaded by Welsh Dragons!

October 3 - From 7:00 am 50 activists from Wales have been blockading the Main Gate of the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) Burghfield (Southeast England). Campaigners are calling for Trident to be scrapped and plans to replace it to be abandoned. Activists from across Wales including from Knighton, Cardiff, Builth, Llandeilo and Swansea are accompanied by three huge red dragons and are 'locked on' with chains and pipes across the main entrance.

Blockaders have sent comments from the blockade:

Ray Davies (Bedwas, Caerffili) says:

"We have come from our Welsh Valleys to tell the world that we will never give up the struggle to free our beautiful world from the dangers and fear of nuclear weapons. We are blockading here at AWE Burghfield, where the Trident warheads are made, for our children and for all our future generations."

Marie Walsh (Blackwood, Gwent):

"Our three Welsh dragons, banners and 'Mad Trident' tea party have been getting lots of support from cars passing on the road where we are blocking the lane to the AWE Burghfield Main Gate. The message is Vote NO to Nuclear!"

Food not Bombs Cardiff:

"We believe the government should not spend any more money on bombs and war, but start spending more money on feeding hungry people."

Angie Zelter (Knighton):

"We need co-operation, not war, to deal with climate change and to enable everyone on the planet to live in security and health."

Jill Gough (CND Cymru National Secretary): 

"The total cost of a replacement for Trident would be over £100 billion. Whatever the cost, nuclear weapons would be immoral, illegal and obscene; the current cuts to jobs, housing, hospitals, schools and other public services only serve to highlight the skewed values of our governments."

 The blockaders expect to end their blockade this afternoon.

  • AWE Burghfield is situated between Aldermaston and Reading in Berkshire. It is responsible for the complex final assembly and maintenance of the warheads while in service, as well as their decommissioning.
  • The protest will be yet another Welsh contribution to current 'AWE Action' events.
  • CND Cymru and other peace organisations are strongly supported in Wales, a country well known for its history of radical movements and pacifism. Over centuries many have worked for international understanding and peaceful resolution of conflict - while London-based governments have built up armaments and carried on with war-building business as usual. Nuclear weapons are no defence. They not only undermine the common wish for a safe society and future for our children and grandchildren, waste scarce resources, destabilise the world and increase international suspicion and insecurity, they are unusable without destroying all life on earth.
  • While many areas of Wales continue to be impoverished, succeeding Westminster governments have failed to seriously consider scrapping the Trident nuclear weapons system, not even as a way of saving resources for the people who need them. Such a move would straight away save over £2bn per year currently spent on its maintenance. The government is now planning to waste £100bn on building and running another obscene replacement nuclear weapons system.

MESSAGE FROM MR. BLACK



When A Solution Comes

Written by: Ray Davies
Lyrics:
Sung by Mr. Black in an attic somewhere in suburbia

When a solution comes,
It's gonna breathe right down on everyone.
When a solution comes
It's gonna cover up the clouds
And eclipse the sun
And black out a pale blue sky,
And everybody's gonna be terrified,
Because they're all going to feel the bite
And there's going to be a revolution
When a solution comes.
It won't take sides with anyone
Regardless of race or creed,
The whole wide world is gonna feel the squeeze.
The red, black, yellow and white
And even the Arabs and the Israelites
They're all going to feel the bite
And there's going to be a revolution.
I've been searching a long, long time,
Looking for a final solution
Searching here, searching there,
Searching everywhere.
Now my day has finally come
It's time to shout to everyone
I have waited a long, long time,
Biding my time and waiting on the sidelines
Watching it all go wrong.
Witnessing the disintegration,
Rubbing my hands in anticipation.
Everybody's searching so desperately,
They've got to run to someone
And that someone's going to be me.
Yeah, I'm gonna change the world,
I'm going to use a little manipulation.
I'm going to build a new civilisation.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

PLANTING THE SEEDS FOR CORPORATE/MILITARY TAKEOVER



One could speculate that the corporate backed forces creating the havoc in Washington DC have a larger goal in mind.

It should be remembered that the infamous Koch brothers, who today fund many of the extreme right-wing organizations in this country, come from John Birch Society stock. Their father, Fred Koch, helped found the John Birch Society in the late 1950s and his rabid anti-communism helped fuel the Cold War.  His sons continue to galvanize hundreds of thousands of people into supporting the Kochs’ narrow agenda of cutting corporate taxes and avoiding regulations to the ruin of our economy and our democracy.

By creating gridlock and breakdown in Washington the forces of American-style fascism are likely to call for a blend of military and corporate takeover of the nation.  Just like we currently see in Detroit, where the corporate Emergency Financial Manager (EFM) dictatorship runs the city, "Mr. Big's plan" to solve our nation's woes very well could become the "final solution" for a restive public that has been taught to hate "big government" during the last 30 years. The mission of the bankruptcy lawyer who has been put in charge of Detroit is to strip that once great city of its assets and privatize its services for the benefit of Wall Street banks.

The American people are being squeezed and shaken down by the corporate hustlers who now run this nation.  The superfluous populations in this country (no longer needed because of mechanization, computerization, robotics, and out-sourcing of jobs) are going to be left to die an early death.  Some might call it genocide, others would call it good business.

The open question is which way will the public turn?  Will they take the "easy" solutions offered by the three-piece suited fascism (described years ago by Bertram Gross in his book Friendly Fascism) or will they stand in resistance to the hollowing out of the country by the corporate forces of greed?  Will the people support fascism or will they move toward our own version of socialism that declares we have a human right to health care, clean air and water, and the resources of our planet?

We are quickly moving toward finding out the answer to these fundamental questions. Put your ear to the railroad tracks and hear the train coming......

JILL STEIN ON THE SHUTDOWN



The American public, not President Obama, is the force that can have the most impact on how Washington pulls out of its current acrimony, former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein told RT on Wednesday.

"I think it's really the American people who need to kick in here... we need to kick in to say, 'Let's stop this government-by-extortion,'" Stein, the most successful female presidential candidate in US history, said.

US MILITARY ANGERS SICILIAN PEOPLE

 

Idyllic Italian town protests US high-tech base
 

Palermo, Italy - Hundreds of letters have been sent to US President Barack Obama from a tiny school in the Sicilian town of Niscemi, asking him to halt the construction of the Mobile User Objective System (MUOS), a next generation military satellite communication facility. 

"I couldn’t  believe that the US has installed all these antennas," said Giuseppe Maida, a teacher at the local institute. And now the US is at war, and the war was declared by a group of mothers, who today are marching in the streets of Palermo. 

The MUOS is to be built on the Niscemi US Naval Radio Transmitter Facility (NRTF) base, where 44 antennas have been operating since 1991, 21 of which, according to US military documents, are still active today. 

Dressed in white, "Mothers against MUOS", as they call themselves, held the banner, "Our children are not your guinea pigs." 

Over the past several months, protesters have held rallies and blocked trucks carrying construction materials into the base.  

"Our children are worried, they ask me what are those antennas," said Concetta Gualato, 45, who is their unofficial spokesperson. "I live 800 metres away from the facility, and I don’t want them to get sick."
Stephen Anderson, a spokesperson for the US embassy, said those concerns are unfounded. "In the US we have similar systems that are located, in fact, closer to population centres and have had no reported negative health or environmental impacts on the communities," he said.  

But Niscemi’s citizens are not satisfied with their explanations and are worried of the consequences of extended exposure to electromagnetic fields for the human body. 

About 2,000 protestors gathered recently in Palermo, accusing Rosario Crocetta, President of Sicily,  of betraying his own people by revoking the ban on the construction. 

See the rest of the story here

GROWING POLICE BRUTALITY



Almost daily I see reports, photos, and videos of growing police brutality across the US.  The video is one of the worst yet.

This kind of thing happens(ed) regularly in the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan where the US military has free reign over the public.  Then these soldiers come home and many of them get jobs working for local police departments or jails/prisons.  They bring the brutality of the war zone with them.

This video is disgusting but a true sign of the times.  This is how people of color, and increasingly low-income whites too, are being treated by a highly militarized police force.  Native Americans, blacks, and Hispanics have been on the receiving end of this brutality for hundreds of years.

The authorities and the courts rarely bring real justice in these cases.  Police often get away with this kind of treatment which only encourages them to do it again.

The talk of American "exceptionalism" is belied by videos like this one.  The reality is that America has a dark and brutal side - most of the rest of the world understands that already.  The American people are increasingly witnessing it first-hand.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

BAN DRONE SURVEILLANCE & KILLING



Manhattan(New York) - As Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif spoke out against drone strikes to the UN General Assembly, the Granny Peace Brigade took the fight to the streets.
 
The Granny Peace Brigade, which has been protesting U.S. involvement in wars since 2005, teamed with Nick Mottern of knowdrones.com to help raise awareness in an eye-catching way near Rockefeller Center.

JUST A BIT CONFUSED ABOUT HEALTH CARE



And now below is a debate between some folks who know something about this new health care morass.  It would be best if we just went to a simpler system that took out the greedy insurance corporations.  We need Medicare for all.


THE TRUTH ABOUT KILLING OF JFK



We are fast approaching November 22, 2013, the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

At this critical moment, we are prepared to create the definitive graphic adaptation about JFK, his legacy, and the reasons behind his assassination. It is a powerful and transforming story.

In his book, JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters, author James W. Douglass tells the story of how John F. Kennedy gradually turned from being a Cold Warrior toward trying to make peace with “the enemy”. With the JFK Records Act triggering the declassification of hundreds of thousands of documents, we now have overwhelming evidence that Kennedy’s policies so upset the military industrial complex that he was branded a traitor and marked for assassination.

US SPIRITUAL LEADERS ON JEJU ISLAND

Nipponzan Myohoji buddhist monk Gilberto Perez (left) and Jesuit Father Bix (right) join the dance at the front gate of Jeju Island Navy base construction site.  Both men are from Washington state in the US

A big event was held in Gangjeong village on Jeju Island, South Korea by the Catholic community during this past weekend.  It was a celebration of two years of active Catholic resistance at the base.

Jeju Island Bishop Kang has been a tremendous supporter of the Navy base resistance effort and said about the weekend protest: "Nation exists to serve peace... [we] cannot achieve peace through war." 
Two spiritual leaders from the US have recently gone to Jeju to stand in solidarity with the villagers and their supporters.  Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist monk Gilberto Perez and Jesuit Father Bix are from Washington state and made the journey together to Jeju.  
In recent days 88 year-old Father Bix wrote:
You would see and feel the holiness of this island; after returning from the regular daily practice of 100 bows (stand-kneel-deep bow) in front of a main gate of the construction site--with a view of the great sea beyond the site. The woman who started this deep bowing practice two years ago was there and today she was assisted by Gilberto and I, two Korean Notre Dame Sisters, a young woman from the US and two Korean women from Jeju.  One of the ND Sisters said to me, “Your country has done this to us”!     
This is the most alive and vibrant faith community I've ever experienced. Daily Eucharist is the foundation of the ongoing acts of resistance which also occur each day. Everyday priests, nuns and villagers sit in chairs blocking the main gate while the sung Eucharist up the road is being broadcast. After the Mass and rosary there is very vibrant Korean dance that knocks your socks off and fills you with joy. After this there is lively song. This is followed by Korean lunch---kim chi style- that is held In the community meal house that has free and open meals every day.
The atmosphere is light and alive with communication. At 7AM the day starts with a village lady who leads us in 100 deep down on your knees bows in front of the gate. Different blocking actions take place in the afternoon. Each order of nuns sends two nuns every week to vigil and resist. They stay in a guest house that is rented by the diocese. Four Jesuits are assigned to full time resistance work. The bishop is fabulous and calls villagers to resistance as well as assigning priests to work for peace.

 Gilberto Perez also wrote:

Na Mu Myo Ho Ren Ge Kyo,
We all continue to pray. Yesterday and today over 75 Catholic nuns, 45 Jesuits and even the Bishop performed Sunday Mass. With over 300 local peoples and big dinner party at the village center. Reminds me of Cuba and Mexico where everyone in town is invited. Many of the nuns, priests and Bishop came from Seoul. Yes, Koreans are very passionate about peace and prayers, many studied in Berkeley, Boston and even the Philippines too. Two young Americans are here but not able to block gate, as they want to return to Korea. We sit in front of gate while Mass is said and police carry us off to let trucks and cars on/off the base and then we just return again. Police are thus far been pretty gentle. They remove us and lots of filming while this is performed, about five time each day.
 
Fr. Bix becomes like a young teenager when he is resisting the empire and very funny and happy with all...A baby Buddha.

Monday, September 30, 2013

PENTAGON PROPAGANDA



The Department of Defense (Endless War) has turned its huge public affairs program into an offensive propaganda campaign being run by the same contractors that spy on the world through the intelligence agencies, according to a DCBureau-National Security News Service (NSNS) investigation.

Military and foreign policy has been privatized in the US.  The Pentagon's #1 job is to serve as the primary resource extraction service for corporate globalization.  We've got to nationalize military production and convert it to sustainable technology production.  Wind turbines, rail systems, solar and other such production must replace the weapons systems that are now the products of endless war. Convert and survive.

Turn the Pentagon into the Natural Guard and deal with the coming ravages of climate change.
The Department of Defense has turned its huge public affairs program into an offensive propaganda campaign being run by the same contractors that spy on the world through the intelligence agencies, according to a DCBureau-National Security News Service (NSNS) investigation. - See more at: http://www.dcbureau.org/201309309080/national-security-news-service/the-selling-of-the-pentagon-2013.html#sthash.cxQHf12d.dpuf
The Department of Defense has turned its huge public affairs program into an offensive propaganda campaign being run by the same contractors that spy on the world through the intelligence agencies, according to a DCBureau-National Security News Service (NSNS) investigation. - See more at: http://www.dcbureau.org/201309309080/national-security-news-service/the-selling-of-the-pentagon-2013.html#sthash.cxQHf12d.dpuf

PAYING FOR YOUR OWN SURVEILLANCE



Due to fiscal crisis in the US the NSA would like you to help pay for your own surveillance.  Please buy these phones and help out the NSA.

MILITARY SPACE PLANE


Air Force mini-shuttle X-37B: The U.S. Air Force is preparing to consolidate "mysterious mini-shuttle" operations at Kennedy Space Center or Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.  
Analysts contend the military space plane is part of the Pentagon's effort to develop the capability to strike anywhere in the world with a conventional warhead in less than an hour - known as Prompt Global Strike.
The development of these new space planes is one reason that the Obama administration and the Pentagon are eager to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles in Russia and China in the years to come. As key elements in the growing U.S. first-strike program, they become even more effective if the U.S. can get its potential rivals to reduce their nuclear retaliatory capability giving the Pentagon an ever greater chance of pulling off a successful decapitating attack.
The Washington Times has previously reported, "The actual expense [of the X-37] is hidden in the Pentagon's 'black,' or classified, budget - is likely to cost more than $1 billion. The launch vehicle alone - a two-stage, liquid-propelled Atlas V rocket - costs as much as $200 million. Ten years of development on the plane - as the project was shuffled from NASA to DARPA and finally to its current institutional home in the Air Force - is likely to have cost hundreds of millions of dollars more." 

TIME FOR NEW SYSTEM


You might be surprised to learn that 42% of Americans believe that capitalism isn't working out so well for us? According to a Brookings Institution’s July survey, more than a quarter of Americans say capitalism is working “not too well” while 16% say capitalism is working “not at all well.” The key point is that there is no democracy in capitalism.  The people, the workers, have virtually no say in decision making at the workplace nor in the halls of government.  The economic system and the political system are rigged and the public is getting tired of it.  These numbers show that the public is ready to talk about a different kind of system.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

SUNDAY SONG