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, July 04, 2015

Say What?


PeaceWorks in Bath July 4 Parade


Bath, Maine calls itself the 'City of Ships' where Navy Aegis destroyers are built.  So today for the July 4 parade, the largest parade in Maine with more than 10,000 watching, our local PeaceWorks group did an entry of peaceful ships.  The ships were designed by Maine artist group called ARRT! (artists' rapid response team) with photos by Peter Woodruff.  Thanks to all those who came and participated with us, it was a great day!  Remember many activists often complain that we are 'always preaching to the choir' but being in these parades helps us reach the community at large with our messages.  We got a good response from the public. (Click on any photo for a better view.)


















Friday, July 03, 2015

New Record in Australia: Most Protests in One Day



Great video with terrific ending about confronting the military industrial surveillance complex.

Latest documentary by multi-award winning Australian filmmaker, David Bradbury. A window into the passions and politics of the modern Australian peace movement.

Shot during the action-packed 2014 Canberra Peace Convergence at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy, Waging Peace tracks a convoy of activists who set out to break the world record for the most protest actions on a single day - 28 were held. Featuring Senator Scott Ludlum, US Iraq War veteran, Vince Emanuele and Bundjalung Elder Vincent Duraux, the film concludes with the powerful, historically significant Frontier Wars March on Anzac Day.

Responding to the perfect storm of wars, climate change and the global surveillance state, today's peace activists act with strategy and gusto; by targeting the industries and institutions which drive Australia's complicity and challenging the deepest of our cultural assumptions about war and Australia's history.

Thursday, July 02, 2015

USA Get Out of Ukraine!



Hundreds stage protest in front of US embassy in Kiev.

The video above speaks for itself - the movement against US occupation and colonization of Ukraine is growing by the day.  Increasingly citizens in Kiev are showing their determined support for the self-defense forces in eastern Ukraine (Donbass) that are still daily being shelled by Kiev's 'National Guard' (neo-Nazi units). The US Army is currently training Kiev's 'National Guard' in western Ukraine.

Apparently during the training in western Ukraine the food is quite good and the accommodations are to the liking of the US GI's.  (See video below) They even have Wifi so they can let folks back home know they are out supporting 'freedom and democracy' in Ukraine and stopping those terrible Russians next door from invading.

Unfortunately these unsuspecting American GI's don't understand that the 'freedom' they are 'defending' is not really the one they have in their minds.  The corporations that run US foreign and military policy have a very different definition of 'freedom'.

This was illustrated yesterday when US Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt spoke at the Fairmont Hotel in Kiev.  Pyatt talked about his upcoming trip to Odessa, Ukraine to visit the new Governor Saakashvili (former President of Georgia now wanted for crimes there who was recently made a Ukrainian citizen and 'appointed' as governor - he is a former student of Harvard College and a favorite US puppet).

Pyatt said in part:  "I'm also delighted that I will be joined by Andy Hunder, the Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine, and Andy and I will use the opportunity to highlight in a public-private way the support of the American business community also.  And certainly, you have a very large American business footprint already in Odessa and southern Ukraine.  But it's also one of the areas where there's the greatest headroom; because whether its Cargill or Archer Daniels Midland [two big agri-business corporations], all of the food processing guys, everyone who's involved with agriculture, they'd like to be doing more here.  And they are not doing more because of the prohibitive investment climate."

Translation:  The big US-based agri-business giants can't wait to get their hands on all that rich Ukrainian soil for GMO farming.  But deals must be made and laws must be passed that enable full control of these lands by these corporations thus Pyatt, Hunder, Cargill, Archer Daniels Midland, Monsanto and the rest of the big boys have serious work to do.  Putting well-worn Saakashvili into the governor seat in Odessa is a key step toward greasing the skids for total corporate control of Ukraine's rich soil - and lots of other 'investment opportunies' as well.

Freedom and democracy indeed!


Pentagon 'Worried' about Inter-Space War



The Pentagon has released a new National Military Strategy, the first since 2011, listing ISIS, Iran,  China and Russia as major security threats. RT's Gayane Chichakyan reports.

Note the reference to Pentagon concerns about "inter-space war with a major power".  This is code lingo to Congress that the aerospace industry wants more $$$ for space warfare research, development, testing and deployment.  The industry has long maintained that the space domination program will be the largest industrial project in world history necessitating a dedicated funding source.

Some years ago in the industry publication Space News an editorial outlined the plan to secure such a dedicated funding source.  The industry paper stated that the "entitlement programs" (Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and what is left of the welfare program) should be defunded and those funds transferred to the Pentagon for space warfare technology development.

These days we see coordinated corporate attacks on the "entitlement programs" at the national and state levels.

Israel - A Terror State


  • It is outrageous that Israel once again used its military to stop and board the most recent attempt to bring aid and solidarity to the people of Gaza.  Pro-Palestinian activists aboard a Swedish vessel tried and failed to reach Gaza this week. The activists were detained and are being deported.
  • The United Church of Christ (UCC) announced on June 30 that the plenary of the 30th General Synod taking place in Cleveland passed Resolution #4, calling for boycotts and divestment from companies that profit from Israel's occupation of Palestinian lands. "In approving this resolution, the UCC has demonstrated its commitment to justice and equality,” said Rev. Mitri Raheb, a Christian Palestinian and Pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land, who travelled to Cleveland for the synod. “For Palestinians living under occupation or facing systematic discrimination as citizens of Israel, enduring the destruction of their homes and businesses, the theft of their land for settlements, and living under blockade and siege in Gaza, this action sends a strong signal that they are not alone, and that there are churches who still dare to speak truth to power and stand with the oppressed.” The vote, which was 508 in favor, 124 against, with 38 abstentions, was the culmination of a process that began in 2005, to end the Church's complicity in Israel's nearly half-century-old occupation and other abuses of Palestinian human rights. 
  •  In an article called The secret projects of Israël and Saudi Arabia we learn:  "According to our information, for the last 17 months (in other words, since the announcement of the negotiations between Washington and Tehran, which have in fact been proceeding for the last 27 months), Tel-Aviv has been engaged in secret negotiations with Saudi Arabia. Extremely high-level delegations have met five times – in India, Italy and the Czech Republic. The cooperation between Tel-Aviv and Riyadh is part of the US plan to create a 'Common Arab Defence Force', under the auspices of the Arab League, but under Israeli command. This 'Force' is already effective in Yemen, where Israeli pilots fly Saudi bombers within the framework of an Arab Coalition whose headquarters have been installed by the Israelis in Somaliland, a non-recognised state situated on the other side of the the Bab el-Mandeb straits."
  • I'm currently reading a new book called Against Our Better Judgment: The hidden history of how the US was used to create Israel by Alison Weir.  This important and fascinating study reveals the gross manipulation by the Zionists in the US and around the world to secure the Israeli state.  One example in the book stands out.  As Jews tried to escape Nazi Germany Zionists worked hard to keep the refugees from entering the US, instead wanting them to have no other option than to populate the newly formed Israel.  Weir writes:  "When [President] Roosevelt made efforts in 1938, and 1943, and the British in 1947, to provide havens for [Jewish] refugees from the Nazis, Zionists opposed these projects because they did not include Palestine.  Morris Ernst, FDR's international envoy for refugees, wrote in his memoir that when he worked to help find refuge for those fleeing Hitler, "...active Jewish leaders decried, sneered and then attacked me as if I were a traitor.  At one dinner party I was openly accused of furthering this plan of freer immigration [into the US] in order to undermine political Zionism...Zionist friends of mine opposed it."
  • An even more shocking revelation from Weir's excellent book is the story about Jews in Iraq who had refused to move to Israel at the time.  Iraq's then-Chief Rabbi Sassoon said, "Jews and Arabs have enjoyed the same rights and privileges for 1,000 years and do not regard themselves as a distinctive separate part of the nation."  Zionists worked to change that by covertly attacking Iraqi Jews so as to induce them to 'flee' to Israel.  Zionists planted bombs in Iraqi synagogues and in the US Information Service Library in Iraq "in attempts to portray the Iraqis as anti-American and to terrorize the Jews," according to author and former CIA operative Wilbur Crane Eveland.  "Soon leaflets began to appear urging Jews to flee to Israel," writes Eveland, and "...most of the world believed reports that Arab terrorism had motivated the flight of the Iraqi Jews whom the Zionists had 'rescued' really just in order to increase Israel's Jewish population."
  • It's clear that Israel was formed as a terrorist state and remains one to this very day.  The world must come to grips with this sad reality and boycott, divest and impose sanctions on immoral Israel. The Palestinian people more than deserve to live free from illegal collective punishment by the corrupt Israeli state.

Carter: U.S. Most Warlike Country on Earth



Former President Jimmy Carter:  "We are the most warlike country on earth, we are a laggard in addressing the problem of global warming for instance, and we are now violating about ten of the thirty paragraphs in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This is something we should look upon as opportunities or duties for the future."

Generally good words from Carter but one key point he is wrong about - you can't have the biggest military in the world and at the same time be the "champion of peace".  Those two things don't fit together.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Join the Bath Parade on July 4


PeaceWorks invites you to join with us in Bath on July 4 for what is told is the "largest parade in Maine". This year we will be using many props made by Natasha Mayers from Whitefield. We'll also have other props and banners proclaiming our theme of conversion of the war machine, climate change, and the need for real sustainable living on our Mother Earth.

We'll meet at 9:30 am on the corner of Congress Ave & Lincoln St in Bath by the cemetery. We will be entry # 54 in the parade

U.S. Imperial Overreach



Over the past year at CrossTalk has asked guests many times whether we face the specter of a new Cold War. Today it is all too obvious there is a new Cold War. What we need to ask now are the terms and conditions of this conflict and the possible outcomes.

CrossTalking with David Swanson, Vladimir Golstein, and Chris Hedges.

Kiev's Propaganda Supervised by Americans



Good story about many of Kiev's military forces joining the self-defense forces in Donbass in eastern Ukraine.

One former Intelligence officer in Ukrainians Army shares how the US supervises Kiev's propaganda machine - making up stories as they try to suggest a Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Our "Special Relationship"


Uncle Sam and his "special relationship" with Chancellor Angela Merkel on display during a carnival parade in Germany.

Many nations have a similar relationship with the US.  The people around the world understand though just what this relationship really means....colonization.

But here in the US the American people still largely live under the illusion that we are somehow 'exceptional' and are offering the world something of great value - which of course we are not.  War and corporate domination is not what people want and need from us.  Mostly they'd like to be left alone to get on with their own lives.

What the US actually offers the world can best be described as a load of bullshit.

They are Not Farming, They are Doing Research



AINA (pronounced "eye-nah") means, “that which feeds us” in the Hawaiian language. The film highlights a simple yet effective path for addressing some of the most pressing environmental and health crises facing the island of Kauai - and of island Earth. That may sound like an outstanding claim, but as AINA vividly illustrates, such is the power of agriculture and consumer choices for people and the planet.

"To malama `āina is to take care of the earth that feeds us. The minute we lose site of that, we have signed our own palapala make, our death warrant."
--Sabra Kauka, Storyteller, from AINA

Monday, June 29, 2015

Sign Our Petition: No Nukes in Space

Petitioning NASA HQ and Congress sign here

Stop all plans to use nuclear power in space - use solar power

Next Stage of War on Russia?



If you are having trouble viewing this video, go to the Youtube version at https://www.youtube.com/user/crimeanfront/videos

Impeach Gov. Rampage


Tuesday, June 30
Augusta State Capital Building
Noon


YOU ARE INVITED TO COME TO THE CITIZENS' RALLY 

Maine citizens are outraged by the dangerous abuses of power and outrageous behavior of Gov. LePage. We will rally to demonstrate our deep distress as LePage's descended into McCarthyism. This will not be tolerated! We will ask the Legislature to investigate and consider the options, including impeachment of LePage.
 

Enough is enough!

Who is invited to the Rally? Maine citizens regardless of political affiliation or non-affiliation. You are invited!

What to bring? Bring your children, grandchildren, friends and neighbors. Posters/signs are welcome to show your thoughts.

Who is sponsoring? A grassroots group who will rally as "A Declaration of Conscience." We are nonpartisan and welcome all citizens, Independents, Democrats and Republicans, and Greens to this rally.

United We Stand against LePage's outrageous behavior

Rebecca Halbrook, 914-671-1826

No Nukes in Space


Since the late 1980's journalism professor Karl Grossman has been writing about nuclear power in space.  He was one of the founding members of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space when it was created in 1992.  Today he remains on the organization's Advisory Board.

Karl's latest article, released today, comes just a day after another rocket launch failure at Cape Canaveral in Florida.

Featured on CounterPunch Karl's article is entitled A Planetary Risk: The Perils of Nuclear-Powered Space Flights.  Below are a few excerpts from the piece and the full article can be read here.

You can also sign our petition calling on NASA & Congress to stop plans for nuclear power in space here.

NASA has released a study claiming there is a need for continued use of plutonium-energized power systems for future space flights. It also says the use of actual nuclear reactors in space “has promise” but “currently” there is no need for them.

The space plutonium systems—called radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGS)—use the heat from the decay of plutonium to generate electricity in contrast to nuclear reactors, usually using uranium, in which fission or atom-splitting takes place.

Examples of the use of benign power in space include the successful flight in May of a solar-powered spacecraft named LightSail in a mission funded by members of the Planetary Society. Astronomer Carl Sagan, a founder of the society, was among those who have postulating having a spacecraft with a sail propelled through the vacuum of space by the pressure of photons emitted by the sun. LightSail demonstrates his vision.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, a former astronaut and Marine Corps major general, remains a big booster of using nuclear-propelled rockets to get to Mars. Work on such a rocket has been going on at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. NASA on its website says that a nuclear-powered rocket “could propel human explorers to Mars more efficiently than conventional spacecraft.”

Through the years, NASA has worked closely with the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission and after the commission was disbanded its successor, the Department of Energy, on space nuclear programs. And there’s a program at DOE’s Los Alamos National Laboratory to develop a “robust fission reactor prototype that could be used as a power system for space travel,” according to Technews World.
This is occurring despite Russia now abandoning its development of nuclear-propelled rockets for missions to Mars, a project it had earlier much-heralded. Reported TASS in April:

“Russia’s space agency Roscosmos is planning to shut down works on developing a megawatt-class nuclear propulsion system for long-range manned spacecraft.”
“We’ve known for years that the nuclear industry has taken control of the seats at the NASA and DOE planning committees that decide whether solar or nuclear power should be used on space missions,” said Bruce Gagnon, coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. “The nuclear industry views space as a new market for their deadly product. Nuclear generators on space missions, nuclear powered mining colonies on Mars and other planetary bodies and even nuclear reactors on rockets to Mars are being sought. Thus there are many opportunities for things to go wrong.”
“Over the years, inside the DOE labs, hundreds of workers have been contaminated while fabricating space nuclear devices. It is not just some theoretical chance of a space launch accident that we are concerned about. We oppose the entire space nuclear power production process,” he said. “It’s all dangerous!”

“Just like here on Earth there is a tug-of-war going on between those who wish to promote life-giving solar power and those who want nukes,” said Gagnon. “That same battle for nuclear domination is being taken into the heavens by an industry that wants more profit—no matter the consequences. The Global Network will continue to organize around the space nuclear power issue by building a global constituency opposed to the risky and unnecessary nukes in space program.” The Global Network is based in Maine.

Grab a Chair



Berlin, Germany –This past Friday life-size bronze statues of Edward Snowden, Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning were unveiled in Berlin’s Alexanderplatz Square in front of German politicians and activists.

In Germany and much of the world, the three are considered heroes in the fight for freedom of information and speech, for their respective leaking of classified U.S. documents.

“They have lost their freedom for the truth, so they remind us how important it is to know the truth,” said the artworks creator, Italian sculptor Davide Dormino, during the unveiling.

The artwork is not only an ode to the courage of these three whistleblowers, but also serves as a call to citizens to take a stand, as the three are standing on chairs with a fourth empty chair next to them.

See more here
 

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Western Culture is Insane



US Iraq war veteran Vince Emanuele speaks out against the US war machine, blowing the whistle on the United States culture of warfare.

Vince Emanuele is a former US Marine of two tours to Iraq who refused to go again by laying down his weapon. He is now organizer for the Michigan chapter of Veterans for Peace and serves on the national board of directors of Iraq Veterans Against War. He host the Veterans Unplugged program on Radio WMS, Michigan.

Be Kind, Be Connected, Be Unafraid....

Rivera Sun author of The Dandelion Insurrection is originally from Maine


I'm almost finished reading the book The Dandelion Insurrection by fellow Mainer Rivera Sun who now lives in New Mexico.  I thought I'd share a few of her golden words from the book.

"We've been taught greed," Zadie told people.  "We were sold consumption as a measure of our worth, but look around you!  When you have nothing, you are still worth more than the millions of dollars locked up in a bank!  Money is a pale substitute for the riches of our hearts.  Hidden within our greed is our longing for something greater; something money cannot buy and products cannot deliver.  We want to love and be loved. We want to share a meal together.  We want shelter from the storm.  We want peace.  We want joy."

"Spit out your enslavement to a culture of greed," Zadie said.  "Feel that addiction leaving your body.  Then raise your head high and walk onwards.  You are one step closer to freedom!"

Look within.  Leaders reflect the courage or the fear that already lies inside us.  Cast out fear, grasp courage, and move forward.
We must show them that the greatest force on earth is not the government, not the corporations, and not the military ... the greatest force on earth is the love of the people for each other!

Her latest book is called Billionaire Buddha.

Sunday Song