INTERNATIONAL PEACE BUREAU TO AWARD THE 2015 MACBRIDE PRIZE TO TWO ISLAND COMMUNITIES

Lampedusa (Italy) and Gangjeon Village, Jeju Island (S. Korea)

Geneva, August 24, 2015. The IPB is delighted to announce its decision to award the annual Sean MacBride Peace Prize to two island communities who, in different circumstances, show proof of a profound commitment to peace and social justice.

LAMPEDUSA is a small island in the Mediterranean and is the southernmost part of Italy. Being the closest part of the territory to the African coastline, it has been since the early 2000s a primary European entry point for migrants and refugees. The numbers of persons arriving has been rapidly increasing, with hundreds of thousands at risk while travelling, and over 1900 deaths in 2015 alone.

The people of the island of Lampedusa have given the world an extraordinary example of human solidarity, offering clothing, shelter and food to those who have arrived, in distress, on their shores. The response of the Lampedusans stands out in stark contrast to the behaviour and official policies of the European Union, apparently intent only on reinforcing their borders in the attempt to keep these migrants out. This 'Fortress Europe' policy is becoming more and more militarised.

Aware of its multi-layered culture, which epitomizes the evolution of the Mediterranean region where over the centuries different civilizations have blended and built on each others’ developments, with mutual enrichment, the island of Lampedusa also shows the world that a culture of hospitality and respect for human dignity are the most effective antidotes to nationalism and religious fundamentalism.

To give but one example of the heroic actions of the people of Lampedusa, let us recall the events of the night of 7-8 May 2011. A boat full of migrants crashed into a rocky outcrop, not far from the shore. Although it was in the middle of the night, the inhabitants of Lampedusa turned out in their hundreds to form a human chain between the shipwreck and the coast. That night alone more than 500 people, including many children, were carried to safety.

At the same time the people of the island are very clear that the problem is a European one, not theirs alone. In November 2012, Mayor Nicolini sent an urgent appeal to Europe’s leaders. She expressed her outrage that the European Union, which had just received the Nobel Peace Prize, was ignoring the tragedies occurring on its Mediterranean borders.

The IPB believes that the dramatic situation in the Mediterranean – constantly visible in the mass media - must be at the top of Europe's urgent priorities. Much of the problem springs from social injustices and inequalities resulting in conflicts in which the West has – over centuries -- played an aggressive role. We recognise that there are no easy solutions, but as a guiding principle, Europe should be honouring the ideals of human solidarity, over and above the cynical considerations of governments and profit/power/resource-seeking entities. When Europe contributes to the ruining of the livelihoods of people, as for instance in Iraq and Libya, Europe will have to find ways to help rebuild those livelihoods. It should be below the dignity of Europe to spend billions on military interventions, and yet not to have the resources available to meet the basic needs. The most vital question is how to develop cooperation between people of goodwill on both sides of the Mediterranean in a long-term, constructive, gender-sensitive and sustainable process.

GANGJEON VILLAGE is the site of the controversial 50-hectare Jeju Naval Base being constructed by the South Korean government on the southern coast of Jeju Island, at a projected cost of nearly $1 billion. The waters around the island are protected by international law as they are within a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve (in October 2010, nine geological sites on on the island were recognised as Global Geoparks by the UNESCO Global Geoparks Network). Even so, the construction of the base continues, although building work has been halted many times by mass protests of people concerned about the base's environmental impact. These people see the base as a US-driven project aimed at containing China, rather than enhancing South Korean security In July 2012, the South Korean Supreme Court upheld the base's construction. It is expected to host up to 24 US and allied military vessels, including 2 Aegis destroyers and 6 nuclear submarines, plus occasional civilian cruise ships on completion (now scheduled for 2016).

Jeju Island has been dedicated to peace ever since around 30,000 were massacred there from 1948-54, following a peasant uprising against US occupation. The South Korean government apologized for the massacre in 2006 and the late President Roh Moo Hyun officially named Jeju an “Island of World Peace”. This violent history[1] helps to explain why the people of Gangjeon Village (population 2000) have been protesting non-violently for around 8 years against the naval base project. According to Medea Benjamin of Code Pink, "About 700 people have been arrested and charged with hefty fines that amount to over $400,000, fines that they cannot or will not pay. Many have spent days or weeks or months in jail, including a well-known film critic Yoon Mo Yong who spent 550 days in prison after committing multiple acts of civil disobedience." The energy and commitment shown by the villagers has attracted the support (and participation) of activists from around the world[2]. We endorse the construction of a permanent Peace Center on the site which can act as a focus for activities reflecting alternative views to those represented by the militarists.

IPB makes the award in order to increase the visibility of this exemplary non-violent struggle at a crucial time. It takes great courage to physically oppose the government's growing aggressive and militaristic policies, especially as they are backed by, and at the service of, the Pentagon. It takes even more courage to maintain that struggle over a period of many years.

CONCLUSION
There is an important connection between the two situations. Not only do we recognise the common humanity of those who resist without weapons the forces of domination in their own island. We make the argument that public resources should not be spent on massive military installations that only increase the tension between nations in the region; rather they should be devoted to meeting human need. If we continue devoting the world’s resources to military rather than humanistic purposes, it is inevitable that we will continue to witness these inhuman situations with desperate people, refugees and migrants, at risk while crossing the seas and at the prey of unscrupulous gangs. Thus we repeat also in this context the basic message of IPB's Global Campaign on Military Spending: Move the Money!

--------------------------------------

About the MacBride Prize
The prize has been awarded each year since 1992 by the International Peace Bureau (IPB), founded in 1892. Previous winners include: the people and government of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, in recognition of the legal case submitted by the RMI to the International Court of Justice, against all 9 states with nuclear weapons, for failure to honour their disarmament commitments (2014); as well as Lina Ben Mhenni (Tunisian blogger) and Nawal El-Sadaawi (Egyptian author) (2012), Jayantha Dhanapala (Sri Lanka, 2007) the Mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (2006). It is named after Sean MacBride and is given to individuals or organisations for outstanding work for peace, disarmament and human rights. (details at: http://ipb.org/i/about-ipb/II-F-mac-bride-peace-prize.html)

The (non-monetary) Prize consists of a medal made in ‘Peace Bronze’, a material derived from recycled nuclear weapons components*. It will be formally awarded on October 23 in Padova, a ceremony that forms part of the annual Conference and Council meeting of the International Peace Bureau. See details at: www.ipb.org. A further bulletin will be issued closer to the time, with details of the ceremony and information relating to requests for media interviews.

About Sean MacBride (1904-88)
Sean MacBride was a distinguished Irish statesman who was IPB Chairman from 1968-74 and President from 1974-1985. MacBride began as a fighter against British colonial rule, studied law and rose to high office in the independent Irish Republic. He was a winner of the Lenin Peace Prize, and also the Nobel Peace Prize (1974), for his wide-ranging work. He was co-founder of Amnesty International, Secretary-General of the International Commission of Jurists, and UN Commissioner for Namibia. While at IPB he launched the MacBride Appeal against Nuclear Weapons, which gathered the names of 11,000 top international lawyers. This Appeal paved the way for the World Court Project on nuclear weapons, in which IPB played a major role. This resulted in the historic 1996 Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice on the Use and Threat of Nuclear Weapons.

About IPB
The International Peace Bureau is dedicated to the vision of a World Without War. We are a Nobel Peace Laureate (1910), and over the years 13 of our officers have been recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize. Our 300 member organisations in 70 countries, and individual members, form a global network which brings together expertise and campaigning experience in a common cause. Our main programme centres on Disarmament for Sustainable Development, whose central feature is the Global Campaign on Military Spending.

http://www.ipb.org
http://www.gcoms.org
http://www.makingpeace.org

Focus: Clinton, Biden, Sanders - Sep 9, 2015


Intel review backs up finding that Clinton emails had top secret information, 'Both emails were classified when they were created' - Fox


Hillary: Intel review does not change the fact that I did not send or receive any information that was marked classified at the time (VIDEO) - Breitbart


Hillary Clinton Offers Apology for E-Mail Practices: ‘That Was a Mistake. I’m Sorry’ (VIDEO) - ABC News


VIDEO: Full Interview of Hillary Clinton on emails -  ABC News


VIDEO: Kirby: State Dept’s claim that the information is not “Top Secret" is based on documents we believe that only we have - C-SPAN.org


VIDEO: Kerry says there's a massive amount of overclassification, no evidence that Clinton emails were classified at the time - Huffington Post


Kerry choice for State Dept 'transparency' czar donated to Clinton’s presidential campaign the maximum allowed of $2700 - Fox


Exclusive: U.S. State Dept to shift 50 staff to boost office handling Clinton emails - Reuters


VIDEO: Gowdy: Kerry 'Protecting' Hillary with 'Staggering' State Department Stonewalling - Breitbart


Senate Republicans want immunity for Clinton's former IT staffer - politico.com


Clintons personally paid State Department staffer to maintain her private server - The Washington Post


Clinton's IT guy earned  $140,000 per year at the State Department and was classified as a GS-15 in his job as a special advisor and deputy chief information officer  - The Daily Caller


Meet the insider who screened Hillary Clinton's emails - politico.com


Hillary Clinton's emails likely reside on multiple servers, expert says - Washington Times


Spam Companies May Have Copies Or Logs Of Clinton's Emails - The Daily Caller


Former Obama Intel Chief Says Suspend Hillary’s Security Clearance - The Daily Caller


Sec. Clinton was a bad manager: Look at how the State Department's Office of Inspector General criticized her tenure - NY Daily News


Clinton E-mails Reveal Clinton's Shocking Dependence on Aides for Menial Tasks - National Review Online


Hillary Clinton was warned Benghazi terrorists used video as ‘cover’, but she went ahead and publicly blamed the Youtube video anyway. - breitbart.com


VIDEO: George Will: Clinton Needs To Answer For Libyan Debacle And Refugee Crisis, "That Is Our Fault" - RealClearPolitics

 

---------------------------------------------------

POLL: Hillary Clinton's lead drops further as interest in Biden grows according to the latest nationwide Monmouth University poll - POLITICO


POLL: Full text of results of the nationwide Monmouth University poll - monmouth.edu


Biden walks with big labor, to cheers of 'run, Joe, run' - Fox News


VIDEO: Vice President Joe Biden's Labor Day speech in Pittsburgh (FULL) - YouTube


VIDEO: Biden marches in Pittsburgh Labor Day Parade, Voters say 'Give It A Go Joe' - YouTube


POLL: Biden more popular than Clinton in Iowa, NH - TheHill


Top Democrats in South Carolina unnerved by Hillary Clinton’s inability to get beyond her email controversy, say Biden’s on-a-wing-and-a-prayer strategy isn’t hopeless - politico.com


Joe Biden 2016: Draft Biden super PAC Iowa co-chairs lined up - politico.com


Murdoch: Biden to run ... and win - politico.com


Bernie Sanders Draws Blue-Collar Workers in Iowa - NBC News


VIDEO: Sanders joins a picket line in Iowa - TheHill


Inside Bernie Sanders' strategy to win over organized labor - Reuters


Trumka: AFL-CIO presidential endorsement unlikely before first two state contests - peoplesworld


POLL: Bernie Sanders Leads Hillary Clinton by 9 in New Hampshire, Gains in Iowa - NBC News


How Bernie Sanders Is Winning New Hampshire - Fortune


Bernie Sanders surge reflects US shift on socialism: In the 18-29 age bracket 69 percent have no problem voting for a socialist, same with 47 percent of older Americans - VOA


POLL: New Hillary Clinton's Favorable Rating One of Her Worst - gallup.com


Clinton campaign to spend $4 million on ads in Iowa, New Hampshire - CNNPolitics.com


Full updated list of endorsements for the Democratic Party presidential candidates, 2016 - Wikipedia


To contact Bartolo email peaceloverblog[at]yahoo[dot]com (replacing [at] with @, [dot] with .)

Tomgram: Engelhardt, Exceptional Pain Dispensed by the Indispensable Nation

This article originally appeared at TomDispatch.com.

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Maine Peace Walk – Militarization of the Seas

Pentagon’s Impact on the Oceans

October 9-24

Ellsworth, Maine to Portsmouth, New Hampshire

The Pentagon has the largest carbon footprint on our Mother Earth.  Waging endless war consumes massive amounts of fossil fuels and lays waste to significant environmentally sensitive places on the planet – particularly the oceans.

The oceans are inhabited by a multitude of different life forms, from microorganisms to whales, many of whom are able to sense sound and use it to find food, navigate, communicate, and avoid predators. Navy sonar blasts wreak havoc on these creatures, disrupting their lives, leaving animals more susceptible to disease and lowered reproductive success, and sometimes injuring and killing them.

Because Navy sonars are extremely loud, depending on ocean conditions, that noise can travel at harmful levels for tens or even hundreds of miles, impacting huge numbers of animals. By the Navy’s own estimates, sonar noise can still be as high as 140 decibels 300 miles from the source, a level that is a hundred times more intense than the level known to result in behavioral changes in large whales.

Some of these exercises will even take place inside designated critical habitat for the already endangered right whale, frequenter of Maine waters. In fact, the Navy is now constructing a 500 square mile instrumented range off the coast of Georgia where it intends to conduct 470 sonar exercises annually - the Navy chose this site just offshore of the only known calving grounds of the right whale! In March 2015 Navy sonar testing near Guam led to the stranding of three beaked whales.

Shipyard Impacts in Maine

Pier-side testing of sonar occurs at Bath Iron Works (BIW) and at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery which results in significant fish kills. Navy off-shore weapons testing exercises puts toxic chemicals and hazardous materials and waste into Maine’s marine environment.

The Kennebec River that BIW fronts is often dredged in order to allow the deep hulled destroyers built there to get into the ocean.  Dredging takes a heavy toll on aquatic life.

The Portsmouth Naval Shipyard has caused serious pollution of the local environment. The shipyard is on an island that the Pentagon considers as one of their facilities most vulnerable to climate change, particularly their dry-dock facilities. Rising sea levels could affect shipyard toxic waste sites which are now mostly right on the shoreline and would seriously impact water quality and sea life.

Ocean Acidification

Since the beginning of the industrial revolution in the early 1800’s, fossil fuel-powered machines have driven an unprecedented burst of human industry and society. Ocean acidification is the ongoing decrease in ocean pH caused by human fossil fuel emissions. Oceans currently absorb approximately half of the CO2 produced by burning fossil fuel. An estimated 30–40% of the carbon dioxide released by humans into the atmosphere dissolves into oceans, rivers and lakes.

Arctic Militarization Due to Climate Change

In early 2014 Maine’s Sen. Angus King went on a nuclear submarine ride under the Arctic Sea ice which is now melting due to climate change.  Admiral Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations was on the sub and said, “In our lifetime, what was [in effect] land and prohibitive to navigate or explore, is becoming an ocean… We need to be sure that our sensors, weapons and people are proficient in this part of the world,” so that we can “own the undersea domain and get anywhere there.”

When Sen. King returned from the trip he told his constituents that there has been "a 40% reduction in ice as a result of global warming."  He reported that "previously inaccessible" gas and oil reserves were now going to create "new opportunities".  King concluded, "I am convinced we need to increase our capacity in the region, something I intend to press upon my colleagues on the Armed Services Committee as we work on our military priorities for the coming years."

Rather than drill for more fossil fuels in the Arctic, and create a new arms race in that environmentally sensitive region, the US should be working to convert our military industries to build offshore wind turbines, rail, solar and tidal power.  According to studies done by the UMASS-Amherst Economics Departmentshipyards in Bath and Portsmouth could nearly double their number of jobs by building rail or wind turbines.  The Gulf of Maine has more wind power generating potential than any other place in the US.

Help Save Our Seas

If the seas die so do humans on Earth and much of the wildlife.  Now is the time to speak out for ending the massive military impacts on the world’s oceans and for conversion of our fossil fuel dependent military industrial complex to sustainable technologies. We will walk to bring attention to these crucial issues.  Please help us carry this message to the public by joining with us.

Maine Walk for Peace is sponsored by:  Maine Veterans for Peace; PeaceWorks; CodePink Maine; Citizens Opposing Active Sonar Threats (COAST); Peace Action Maine; Veterans for Peace Smedley Butler Brigade (Greater Boston); Seacoast Peace Response (Portsmouth); Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space; (List in formation)  

To view the walk flyer and daily walk schedule please click here http://vfpmaine.org/walk%20for%20peace%202015.ht

Talk Nation Radio: David Rothauser on Japan's Struggle to Keep its Peace Constitution

https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/talk-nation-radio-david-rothauser-on-japans-struggle-to-keep-its-peace-constitution

David Rothauser is a playwrite, filmmaker, teacher, and peace activist. We discuss his new film, Article 9 Comes to America.

Total run time: 29:00

Host: David Swanson.
Producer: David Swanson.
Music by Duke Ellington.

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Syndicated by Pacifica Network.

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Past Talk Nation Radio shows are all available free and complete at
http://TalkNationRadio.org

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Tom Petty Releases New Song on Refugee Crisis

We done somethin' we both know it
We don't talk too much about it
Yeah it ain't no real big secret all the same
Somehow we get around it
Iraq wasn't really hiding WMD baby
We believed what we want to believe
You see the wars are what make all the refugees
... the wars are what make all the refugees

Somewhere, somehow somebody
Liberated you from your home
Now you're on the move to survive
Far from the graves of your loved ones
Libya's hell since we killed Gadaffi baby
Everybody's dead or hurt, not free
You see the wars are what make all the refugees
... the wars are what make all the refugees

Baby this ain't the first
Bombs fixed a million lands by making em worse
The latest lie seems real to you
But it's one of those things
You gotta die to make true

Somewhere, somehow somebody
Liberated you from your home
Who knows, maybe you were kidnapped
Tied up, taken away and held for ransom
It won't make it on the BBC baby
But everybody's dead or hurt, not free
You see the wars are what make all the refugees
... the wars are what make all the refugees

(apologies to Tom Petty who actually had nothing to do with this)

Activists Want the U.S. Institute of Peace to Favor Peace

By David Swanson, teleSUR


The World may be shocked to learn United States government has an Institute of Peace; Orwell would not have been.

Gallup polling finds that much of the world believes the U.S. government to be the greatest threat to peace on earth. It comes as a surprise to many that the U.S. government maintains and funds something called the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) which operates out of a shiny new building near the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., a building with a curved roof clearly meant to resemble a dove and yet somehow more closely resembling a giant brassiere.

George Orwell, had he lived to see USIP, might have been less surprised than most. In fact, USIP was created by a law signed by President Ronald Reagan in the year 1984, the year for which Orwell had named his dystopian novel back in 1948, when the U.S. Department of War had just been renamed the Department of Defense, and its mission of offensive war-making had been clearly announced to observers fluent in doublespeak. ”The Orwellian U.S. Institute for Peace is staffed and steered by some of our most committed proponents for war and mayhem, many of whom are in the revolving door between government and military contractors,” Alice Slater tells me. Slater is New York Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, and serves on the Coordinating Committee of World Beyond War.

“Instead of supporting efforts for diplomacy and peaceful settlement of disputes,” she continues, “the ill-named Peace Institute advises Congress and the press on how [the United States] can bomb and arm nations around the world. We need to replace the warmakers with peacemakers and have an Institute that really serves the cause of peace in the 21st century when war is so obviously unworkable.”

    “...the Institute is designed to further U.S. empire and create a unipolar world where the United States dominates economically, militarily and politically.”

While the Institute of Peace was created in response to pressure from the peace movement, some peace advocates, in the end, opposed its creation, as they saw the writing on the wall. These included Noam Chomsky who, like Francis Boyle and others I very much respect, tell me that they view any effort to reform USIP as hopeless. Meanwhile, many peace activists, even in the United States, have no idea that USIP exists, as it has virtually no interaction with the peace movement. A movement in recent years to create a Department of Peace offers, to my knowledge, no evidence that the fate of such a Department wouldn't resemble that of the Institute.

And yet I believe that envisioning a radically reformed government in which a Department or Institute of Peace could actually work for peace is critical. And I believe there is hope for reforming USIP to the point where it does more good than harm. Kevin Zeese, co-director of Popular Resistance, tells me that “like the National Endowment for Democracy, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and other U.S. agencies, the Institute is designed to further U.S. empire and create a unipolar world where the United States dominates economically, militarily and politically. While people in the U.S. are trying to change this foreign policy, governments around the world should take steps to prevent these agencies from operating within their borders, as they will do all they can to foment dissent and create regime change to ensure governments cooperate fully with the United States and its trans-national corporations.”

Zeese's words are true, and yet USIP does do some work aimed at peace, including hosting speakers and producing publications aimed at peace, sending skilled mediators into conflict zones, making research grants, holding essay contests, and conducting conflict-resolution trainings whenever they do not overly conflict with the goals of U.S. imperialism. The trick is how to expand the good work done by USIP while exposing and opposing the bad.

Toward that end, a group of prominent peace activists has just launched a petition that it plans to deliver to USIP in late September. As the petition makes clear, while USIP claims that it is forbidden to oppose U.S. wars or to lobby against them or to promote peaceful alternatives to contemplated military actions, a careful reading of the 1984 law that created USIP reveals that this just isn't so. In fact, USIP regularly lobbies the rest of the U.S. government and the U.S. public in favor of wars, including the overthrow of the Syrian government -- and occasionally against wars, as in the case of USIP's support for the nuclear agreement with Iran.

“The agreement with Iran provides an excellent opening for USIP to promote the success of negotiations and diplomacy in achieving peace and international understanding,” says Elizabeth Murray, who served as Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near East in the National Intelligence Council before retiring after a 27-year career in the U.S. government. “The U.S. Institute of Peace,” she explains, “could lead the way in resolving dangerous international crises by countering corporate media spin on Iran, Russia, Ukraine, and Syria, and by promoting peaceful alternatives to military 'solutions' that benefit few but the corporate-military industry. The world is awash in endless wars, floods of refugees and PTSD-afflicted military veterans. USIP can break this tragic cycle by working actively for peace.”

So it can, at least legally and logically and theoretically. And yet few believe that it will.  Preventing USIP from extending the model of diplomacy rather than war to numerous nations other than Iran is, primarily, the inclination of those individuals who make up USIP, including USIP board member and chairman Stephen Hadley, who urges the bombing of Syria and the militarization of Ukraine, while encouraging European nations to double their military spending, and himself profiting from war as a board member of Raytheon. Then there's USIP board member Eric Edelman, a former undersecretary at the Pentagon, who promotes higher military spending, an attack on Iran, and deployment of nuclear weapons to nations on Russia's border. USIP board member Major General Frederick M. Padilla, USMC, is career military as well. The new petition calls for the replacement of these three board members with peace activists, of whom USIP has none on its board.

It will be very interesting to see how USIP engages with those urging it to live up to the straightforward, non-Orwellian meaning of its name.

David Swanson is an author, activist, journalist, and radio host. He is director of WorldBeyondWar.org and campaign coordinator for RootsAction.org. Swanson's books include War Is A Lie. He is a 2015 Nobel Peace Prize Nominee.

Nuclear War Theme Parks: Mass Destruction for the Whole Family

By John LaForge

Plutonium was named after Pluto, “god of the underworld,” Hades, or hell. It was created inside faulty reactors, concentrated, and machined by US scientists into the most devastating and horrifying of all weapons. Photos of what the Manhattan Project’s plutonium bomb did to human beings at Nagasaki prove the point. There is radioactive blowback in the fact that the thousands of tons of plutonium created since 1945 is so dangerously hot and long-lived that, like the underworld itself, nobody knows how to handle it at all -- except maybe to trivialize it. 

Hoping perhaps to show that the bomb from hell can be transformed from a vengeful, self-destructive, nightmare demon, into a benign, peace-loving, fairy-tale prince, nuclear propagandists and their friends in Congress are establishing nuclear war theme parks -- without the taint of mass destruction -- at former bomb factories and nuclear weapons launch pads all across the country.
Tours are being offered at the “B Reactor,” on the Hanford Reservation in Washington State which in 2008 was declared a National Historic Landmark. Plutonium production reactors for the nuclear arsenal were sloppily operated there for decades, releasing large amounts of radioactive fallout and causing permanent tainting of groundwater which now threatens the Columbia River—cover it up, make it a destination.

Visiting Non-Jewish Populations Of Israel: Part 1: Introduction

Most of my blog and most of my experiences have been from behind the Separation Wall in the West Bank.  But a few weeks ago, I went on a political tour around Israel. There were about 20 of us and we hired a big, bright pink bus to take us on a three day tour.   It wasn’t a typical tour that most people go on when they come to Israel. People usually visit Tel Aviv and go to the beach, maybe visit the Carmel Market and shop at one of the many malls.  Then they go over to Jerusalem and visit some holy sites, and the Old City.  They probably  go to the Dead Sea and even up to the Sea of Galilee.

Living Next to the Border of Gaza

During my non-touristy tour around Israel, we traveled to Sderot which is an Israeli town a few kilometers from the Gaza border.  It is often hit by rockets during upheaval.  It was interesting to see the trauma that the Jewish people in that town live in because I rarely get that side of the story.  There were bomb shelters everywhere including the playground, which had a bomb shelter painted and shaped like a big caterpillar. I guess to cheer up the children.  The state of Israel requires each home in to have a bomb shelter. Instead of trying to make peace, when the project was initiated the Israeli government used tax money that could have been used for social services,  to install many of these private bomb shelters. 

Visiting Non-Jewish Populations Of Israel: Part 3: Druze in the Golan Heights

After a night in Jaffa, we went up to the Golan Heights and met the Druze who also live under harsh conditions and live with less rights than Jewish citizens within the state of Israel.  The Golan Heights was taken from Syria in 1967 during the six day war and has been occupied by Israel ever since.  There are many Arabs, including the Druze population that now live within the borders of Israel in the Golan Heights.  The lecture and tour of this Druze village about the living conditions and situation of the Druze population was very informative and interesting.  The conditions are similar to the West Bank Palestinians.  As I learn more and more about the different people of this land, the facts start blending about each group’s situation.  They are all similar, they are all horrible.  Most of them are unbelievable and they all violate international and my moral law.

U.S. Drops Fleas With Bubonic Plague on North Korea

This happened some 63 years ago, but as the U.S. government has never stopped lying about it, and it's generally known only outside the United States, I'm going to treat it as news.

Here in our little U.S. bubble we've heard of a couple versions of a film called The Manchurian Candidate. We've heard of the general concept of "brainwashing" and may even associate it with something evil that the Chinese supposedly did to U.S. prisoners during the Korean War. And I'd be willing to bet that the majority of people who've heard of these things have at least a vague sense that they're bullshit.

If you didn't know, I'll break it to you right now: people cannot actually be programed like the Manchurian candidate, which was a work of fiction. There was never the slightest evidence that China or North Korea had done any such thing. And the CIA spent decades trying to do such a thing, and finally gave up.

I'd also be willing to bet that very few people know what it was that the U.S. government promoted the myth of "brainwashing" to cover up. During the Korean War, the United States bombed virtually all of North Korea and a good bit of the South, killing millions of people. It dropped massive quantities of Napalm. It bombed dams, bridges, villages, houses. This was all-out mass-slaughter. But there was something the U.S. government didn't want known, something deemed unethical in this genocidal madness.

It is well documented that the United States dropped on China and North Korea insects and feathers carrying anthrax, cholera, encephalitis, and bubonic plague. This was supposed to be a secret at the time, and the Chinese response of mass vaccinations and insect eradication probably contributed to the project's general failure (hundreds were killed, but not millions). But members of the U.S. military taken prisoner by the Chinese confessed to what they had been a part of, and confessed publicly when they got back to the United States.

Some of them had felt guilty to begin with. Some had been shocked at China's decent treatment of prisoners after U.S. depictions of the Chinese as savages. For whatever reasons, they confessed, and their confessions were highly credible, were borne out by independent scientific reviews, and have stood the test of time.

How to counter reports of the confessions? The answer for the CIA and the U.S. military and their allies in the corporate media was "brainwashing," which conveniently explained away whatever former prisoners said as false narratives implanted in their brains by brainwashers.

And 300 million of so Americans more or less sort of believe that craziest-ever dog-ate-my-homework concoction to this day!

The propaganda struggle was intense. The support of the Guatemalan government for the reports of U.S. germ warfare in China were part of the U.S. motivation for overthrowing the Guatemalan government; and the same cover-up was likely part of the motivation for the CIA's murder of Frank Olson.

There isn't any debate that the United States had been working on bio-weapons for years, at Fort Detrick -- then Camp Detrick -- and numerous other locations. Nor is there any question that the United States employed the top bio-weapons killers from among both the Japanese and the Nazis from the end of World War II onward. Nor is there any question that the U.S. tested such weapons on the city of San Francisco and numerous other locations around the United States, and on U.S. soldiers. There's a museum in Havana featuring evidence of years of U.S. bio-warfare against Cuba. We know that Plum Island, off the tip of Long Island, was used to test the weaponization of insects, including the ticks that created the ongoing outbreak of Lyme Disease.

Dave Chaddock's book This Must Be the Place, which I found via Jeff Kaye's review, collects the evidence that the United States indeed tried to wipe out millions of Chinese and North Koreans with deadly diseases.

"What does it matter now?" I can imagine people from only one corner of the earth asking.

I reply that it matters that we know the evils of war and try to stop the new ones. U.S. cluster bombs in Yemen, U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan, U.S. guns in Syria, U.S. white phosphorus and Napalm and depleted uranium used in recent years, U.S. torture in prison camps, U.S. nuclear arsenals being expanded, U.S. coups empowering monsters in Ukraine and Honduras, U.S. lies about Iranian nukes, and indeed U.S. antagonization of North Korea as part of that never-yet-ended war -- all of these things can be best confronted by people aware of a centuries-long pattern of lying.

And I reply, also, that it is not yet too late to apologize.

Hot and dry in the heartland: Radioactive Texas Waste Dump Threatens Key US Water Resource

By Paul DiRienzo

 

In a remote place in the desert of West Texas, outside the small town of Andrews, something dirty has been going on which threatens the water supply of nearly a third of America’s farmland (and perhaps the millions of people who eat the food grown using that water).  

Visiting Non-Jewish Populations Of Israel: Part 2: Unrecognized Bedouin Villages

At the beginning of our tour, we traveled to the Negev and met with Bedouins who live in the “unrecognized villages”.  These villages have about 80,000 people living in them and half of them are under the age of 18.  Although, these people live inside the state of Israel, are considered citizens, pay taxes if they work and some of them even serve in the military, they don’t have  access to electricity or running water.  When the tour guide said that some of them voluntarily serve in the military, I was astonished…why would they do that.  It turns out the Israeli military needed more soldiers to enroll in the military so they told Bedouins in these villages that if they serve in the military the state of Israel would give them electricity and running water and make their living conditions better.  So many Bedouins from these villages joined the military and were sometimes the toughest, harshest soldiers in the West Bank because they were trying to prove

Future of War and Peace at Stake in Streets of Japan

The United States and its European allies have launched wars on the Middle East that have created an enormous refugee crisis. The same nations are threatening Russia. The question of maintaining peace with Iran is on the tip of everyone's tongue. Even in Asia and the Pacific, not to mention Africa, the biggest military buildup is by the United States.

So why does Japan, of all places, have streets full of antiwar demonstrations for the first time since the U.S. war on Vietnam? I don't mean the usual protests in Okinawa of U.S. bases. I mean Japanese protests of the Japanese government. Why? Who did Japan bomb? And why do I say the future of war and peace in the world is at stake in Japan?

Let's back up a little. Japan went through a period of relative peace and prosperity between 1614 and 1853. The U.S. military forced Japan open to trade and trained Japan as a junior partner in imperialism, a story told well in James Bradley's The Imperial Cruise. The junior partner chose not to stay a junior partner, challenging U.S. dominance in World War II.

At the end of World War II, the war's losers in Japan and Germany were put on trial for an act that had been perfectly legal until 1928, the act of making war. In 1928, the global peace movement, led by the U.S. movement for the Outlawry of War, created the Kellogg-Briand Pact, a treaty that prohibits all war, a treaty to which most nations of the world are party today. This is a story I tell in my book When the World Outlawed War. President Franklin Roosevelt used the Kellogg-Briand Pact to create prosecutions of war.

Now, the general success thus far and in the future of the Kellogg-Briand Pact can be debated. It has prevented wars, it has stigmatized war, it has made war a crime that can be prosecuted in court (at least against losers), and World War III hasn't happened yet. But wars by wealthy nations against poor ones roll right along. The pact itself was of course never expected to abolish war on its own, a standard to which nobody ever holds any other law.

The Japanese success of the Kellogg-Briand Pact is a different matter. At the end of World War II, long-time Japanese diplomat and peace activist and new prime minister Kijuro Shidehara asked General Douglas MacArthur to outlaw war in a new Japanese constitution. The result was Article Nine of the Japanese Constitution, the wording of which is nearly identical to that of the Kellogg-Briand Pact.

Japan, which had gone centuries without war, would go another 70 years. The U.S. Outlawrists of the 1920s never imagined their work being imposed on a conquered nation by a ruling general. But they might have imagined it being taken up by the Japanese people. If Article Nine was not clearly owned by the Japanese people themselves in 1947, it was in 1950. In that year, the United States asked Japan to throw out Article Nine and join a new war against North Korea. Japan refused.

When the American War (in Vietnam) came along, the United States made the same request of Japan to abandon Article Nine, and Japan again refused. Japan did, however, allow the U.S. to use bases in Japan, despite huge protest by the Japanese people.

Japan refused to join in the First Gulf War, but provided token support, refueling ships, for the war on Afghanistan (which the Japanese prime minister openly said was a matter of conditioning the people of Japan for future war-making). Japan repaired U.S. ships and planes in Japan during the 2003 war on Iraq, although why a ship or plane that could make it from Iraq to Japan and back needed repairs was never explained.

Now, at U.S. urging, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is attempting to formally throw out Article Nine, or to "reinterpret" it to mean its opposite. And the Japanese people, to their everlasting credit, are in the streets defending their constitution and their culture of peace.

Meanwhile, the people of the United States, with some 50% of their popular movie entertainment (by my unscientific estimate) based around a good-and-evil drama of World War II, are not only not in the streets. They're not even in touch with the world. They have no idea this is going on. And if, 50 years from now, a heavily militarized Japan attacks Hawaii, the people of the United States will continue to have no idea how that happened.

There are peace activists around the world struggling to uphold the idea that a modern nation can live without war. Japan is a leading example, with certain obvious shortcomings, of how that can be done. We cannot afford to lose Japan as a model of peace. We cannot afford to hear from war mongers five years from now that war is proven inevitable by the return of the Japanese to war. We cannot afford to hear the United Nations, ten years from now, credit Japan with the humanitarian service of protecting people by bombing them. We cannot afford, twenty years from now, to hear that the Pentagon must be built up to guard against the evil Japanese.

Now, in fact, not later, but right now, would be a good moment in which to wake up and value what Japan has achieved. Now would be an ideal moment in which to remember that Japan's Article Nine was already and remains the law of the land in our other nations through the text of the Kellogg-Briand Pact. Let's start obeying the law.

* Much credit to David Rothauser for his film Article 9 Comes to America, and for being my guest next week on Talk Nation Radio.

* Photo from http://damoncoulter.photoshelter.com

Focus: Clinton, Sanders, Biden - Sep 4, 2015


Former Clinton IT specialist will plead the fifth and not testify in House probe, lawyer says - Reuters


Exclusive: Former Clinton IT specialist has rebuffed FBI and State Department investigators in email probe - Reuters


Judicial Watch asks whether the State Dept hired Clinton’s IT specialist and spent taxpayer money to maintain her private server - Judicial Watch


VIDEO: Hillary Clinton's Press Secretary, Brian Fallon, discusses the email controversy, including a former aide pleading the fifth - CNN


Critics say State Dept. tries to block cases in court by requesting a single judge to handle all of the Clinton email lawsuits - Washington Times


Judge sees rocky road for feds' plan to coordinate Hillary Clinton email lawsuits - politico.com


Hillary Clinton classified emails mostly sent by Jake Sullivan, Cheryl Mills, Huma Abedin - Washington Times


Cheryl Mills, Adviser to Hillary Clinton, Testifies on Benghazi and Email Practices - The New York Times


Judge poised to order search for backups of the roughly 31,000 emails Clinton claims were personal and deleted from her private server - TheHill


Watchdog Sues For Hillary Clinton Email Metadata - The Daily Caller


New Clinton Violations In Use Of Thumb Drives For Emails - The Daily Caller


FBI Scours Clinton Server for Evidence of Spying - Bloomberg View


Snowden: No way Hillary’s private server was secure - politico.com


VIDEO: Edward Snowden says it is 'ridiculous' to think Hillary Clinton emails were secure (Starts at min 1:00) - Al Jazeera


Exclusive: Hillary's Email Server Had A Webmail Portal That Allowed UNRESTRICTED ACCESS To Hackers - Breitbart


Six Ways Hillary Clinton's Email Could Have Been Hacked - huffingtonpost.com


Exclusive: Hillary's Email Server Crashed Three Times, In One Occasion Weeks After Benghazi - Breitbart


Hillary Paid to Hide Identity of People Running Her Email Server - Breitbart


Bill Clinton's Top Adviser Ran Hillary's Email Network - breitbart.com


Emails show how Hillary fundraiser-turned-lobbyist used connections for clients who were also donors to the Clinton Foundation - OpenSecrets Blog


Haiti Fraudster Had Line to Clinton at State Department - Washington Free Beacon


Hillary Suggests Clinton Foundation $$$ To Cheryl Mills’ Domestic Partner For Haiti Project - The Hillary Daily


Clinton Foundation looked to bring CEO of sanctioned oil company to US - New York Post


Schweizer: Emails 'Confirming' Clinton Had 'Intertwining Relationships' Between Foundation and Official Dutes - Breitbart


Schweizer: Clinton Set Up Server To Hide 'Blurring' Between Private Clinton Activity and State Dept Business - Breitbart


Interactive graphic: Hillary Clinton's insider network - Washington Examiner

 

---------------------------------------------

Bernie Sanders' rise a 'good thing for the party,' White House says - Washington Times


Joe Biden: Bernie Sanders ‘doing a helluva job’ - politico.com


Sanders: I'm best to beat Republicans in November (VIDEOS) - desmoinesregister.com


Sanders says organization is growing - AP


VIDEO: Full Interview: Sen. Bernie Sanders with Register editorial board - desmoinesregister.com


Legion of Tech Volunteers Lead a Charge for Bernie Sanders - The New York Times


How Bernie Sanders' Online Army Is Using Reddit to Fuel His 2016 Campaign Surge - mic.com


Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Op-Ed: This is the difference between Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders - The Washington Post


Donald Trump fires back at Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - NY Daily News


Bernie Sanders Said to Be Close to Signing Fund-Raising Deal With Democratic Party - The New York Times


The fact-checker's guide to viral graphics contrasting Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders - PunditFact


POLL: According to a Washington Post/ABC News poll Clinton's favorability continues to drop while Trump sees progress - Washington Examiner


Hillary Clinton to give rare national interview with NBC News correspondent Andrea Mitchell on Friday - politico.com


Biden says he cannot say yet whether he will mount White House run - Reuters


Biden's boosters race to lock up Democratic donors - usatoday.com


Draft Biden staffs up in early-voting states New Hampshire and South Carolina - TheHill


Pennsylvania Democrats Put Support Behind Biden - NBC 10 Philadelphia


Sen. Elizabeth Warren likely to endorse a candidate in 2016 primary - The Boston Globe


O’Malley organizing protest at DNC HQ over debate schedule - TheHill


To contact Bartolo email peaceloverblog[at]yahoo[dot]com (replacing [at] with @, [dot] with .)

Accommodating abuse: Critics of BlackLivesMatter# Practice Defiant Denial

By Linn Washington, Jr.

 

Over 1,500 miles separate Harris County, Texas and Harrison Township, New Jersey yet public officials in those two jurisdictions seemingly share a disdain for persons who protest against police abuse.

 

Please sign this fab TSA petition

Come on, folks, let’s get this up to at least 150 signatures. If we do, it’ll go live on the main White House petition site. It was written by our perennially creative contributor Chris Bray.

NATO: Never-ending Aggression Toward Others

Well, here's definitive proof that a large organization can have a mind: NATO has clearly lost one.

NATO was supposed to "defend" Europe against the Soviet Union.  A whole lot of people believed that, at least until the Soviet Union ended.

Then NATO was supposed to "defend" Europe against Iran. I think about 8 people believed that, not counting U.S. senators. But then Iran made a deal for the toughest inspections of its non-existent nuclear weapons program in the history of the world.

And NATO rushed to expand before anyone had the logical next thought, namely, Now what do we supposedly need NATO for?

NATO is now going to open headquarters in Bulgaria, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Estonia -- all nations between Western Europe and Russia, all nations where the United States promised Russia NATO would never go, and all moves seen as threats by the Russian government. In fact, Russia is now putting (possibly nuclear) missiles into Kaliningrad and talking frequently about the growing likelihood of war with the United States.

The United States, for its part, is putting more nuclear weapons into Europe, arming its coup government in Ukraine, posturing over claims to the arctic (where it hopes to dig out more of the filthy fuels with which it has melted the arctic), and churning out anti-Russian propaganda by the boatload.

Tiny Guam, huge US Marine base expansions

By Sylvia Frain

On Saturday morning August 29, 2015, the United States Navy signed the Record of Decision (ROD), the final document needed for the implementation of one of the largest “peacetime” military build-ups in American history. This will cost between $8 and 9 billion, with only $174 million for civilian infrastructure, which Congress has not released yet. As a central aspect of American’s foreign policy ‘Pivot to the Pacific’, the build-up will relocate thousands of Marines and their dependents from Okinawa, Japan to Guam.

This does not auger well for the people of Guam. For decades, the Okinawans have protested the violence, pollution, military accidents, and sexual assaults committed by American Marines on the local population. Moving those Marines to tiny Guam frightens many.

Military-colonial destruction is not new to the people of Guam. The indigenous Chamorro people were nearly exterminated by invasion and colonization by Spain, then the US, then Japan during WWII, and then back into US possession. Located in the Western Pacific Ocean more than 8,000 miles from Washington D.C., Guam remains an unincorporated territory and possession of the United States. While residents are American citizens, carry U.S. passports and pay federal taxes, they have no representation in the Senate, have a non-voting delegate in Congress and cannot vote in Presidential elections.

Currently, one-third of the island of Guam (210 square miles) is US Department of Defense (DOD) property and inaccessible to non-military residents. Many people are still waiting for war reparations from World War II and compensation for their land taken by the military. In addition, people from the Guam serve and die in the United States Armed Forces at higher rates than any other state in America.

The build-up will add further strain on already fragile infrastructure and limited resources:

  • A thousand acres of limestone forest will be destroyed for housing the Marines and their dependents and the military will control the largest water source for the island.
  • Guam will become the biggest storage facility for fuel and ammunitions in the Pacific.
  • A Live Fire Range Complex (LFRC) will be constructed at Northwest Field on Anderson Air Force Base and will close Ritidian National Wildlife Refuge, a sanctuary to numerous endangered species and a sacred site to the indigenous people. The public will no longer have access to the National Wildlife Refuge, including the pristine beach, ancient caves, education center and a newly ‘rediscovered’ 4,000-year-old fishing village containing the oldest archaeological artefacts found on Guam. In the early 1990’s, local families demanded that Ritidian Point, or Litekyan, be returned to its traditional owners. However, the federal government instead created the National Wildlife Refugee, owned by the United States Fish and Wildlife Services.

While the Governor of Guam, the non-voting Congresswoman, the Guam Chamber of Commerce and other military-business lobbyists welcome the military build-up, many people on Guam consider the ROD’s release a sad day for the people, land, wildlife and culture of Guam. With an economy 60 percent derived from tourism, a massive expansion of the military on a vulnerable small island will only degrade both the environment and the native Chamorro people.

Sylvia C. Frain is a Ph.D. candidate with the National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Otago on the South Island of Aotearoa New Zealand and a Research Associate with the Micronesia Area Research Center (MARC) at the University of Guam.

Worst president ever?: History Should and Probably Will Judge President Obama Harshly

By Dave Lindorff


President Barack Obama is on track to go down in history as one of the, or perhaps as the worst and most criminal presidents in US history. 


10 Lessons of the Iran Deal

By the latest count, the nuclear agreement with Iran has enough support in the U.S. Senate to survive. This, even more than stopping the missile strikes on Syria in 2013, may be as close as we come to public recognition of the prevention of a war (something that happens quite a bit but generally goes unrecognized and for which there are no national holidays). Here, for what they’re worth, are 10 teachings for this teachable moment.

  1. There is never an urgent need for war. Wars are often begun with great urgency, not because there’s no other option, but because delay might allow another option to emerge. The next time someone tells you a particular country must be attacked as a “last resort,” ask them politely to please explain why diplomacy was possible with Iran and not in this other case. If the U.S. government is held to that standard, war may quickly become a thing of the past.
  1. A popular demand for peace over war can succeed, at least when those in power are divided. When much of one of the two big political parties takes the side of peace, the advocates of peace have a chance. And of course now we know which senators and Congress members will shift their positions with partisan winds. My Republican Congressman opposed war on Syria in 2013 when President Obama supported it, but supported greater hostility toward Iran in 2015 when Obama opposed it. One of my two Democratic Senators backed peace for a change, when Obama did. The other remained undecided, as if the choice were too complex.
  1. The government of Israel can make a demand of the government of the United States and be told No. This is a remarkable breakthrough. None of the actual 50 states expects to always get its way in Washington, but Israel does — or did until now. This opens up the possibility of ceasing to give Israel billions of dollars worth of free weapons one of these years, or even of ceasing to protect Israel from legal consequences for what it does with those weapons
  1. Money can make a demand of the U.S. government and be told No. Multibillionaires funded huge advertising campaigns and dangled major campaign “contributions.” The big money was all on the side opposing the agreement, and yet the agreement prevailed — or at least now looks like it will. This doesn’t prove we have a corruption-free government. But it does suggest that the corruption is not yet 100 percent.
  1. Counterproductive tactics employed in this victorious antiwar effort may end up making this a Pyrrhic victory. Both sides in the debate over the agreement advanced baseless claims about Iranian aggression and Iranian attempts to create nuclear weapons. Both sides depicted Iranians as completely untrustworthy and menacing. If the agreement is undone or some other incident arises, the mental state of the U.S. public regarding Iran is in a worse position than it was before, as regards restraining the dogs of war.
  1. The deal is a concrete step to be built on. It is a powerful argument for the use of diplomacy — perhaps even less hostile diplomacy — in other areas of the globe. It is also a verifiable refutation to future assertions of an Iranian nuclear threat. This means that U.S. weaponry stationed in Europe on the basis of that alleged threat can and must be withdrawn rather than remain as an open act of aggression toward Russia.
  1. When given the choice, the nations of the world will leap at an opening for peace. And they will not easily be brought back again. U.S. allies are now opening embassies in Iran. If the United States backs away from Iran again, it will isolate itself. This lesson should be borne in mind when considering violent and non-violent options for other countries.
  1. The longer a war with Iran is avoided, the stronger an argument we have for continuing to avoid it. When a U.S. push for war on Iran has been stopped before, including in 2007, this has not only put off a possible catastrophe; it has also made it more difficult to create. If a future U.S. government wants war with Iran, it will have to go up against public awareness that peace with Iran is possible.
  1. The nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) works. Inspections work. Just as inspections worked in Iraq, they work in Iran. Other nations, such as Israel, North Korea, India, and Pakistan, should be encouraged to join the NPT. Proposals for a nuclear-free Middle East should be pursued.
  1. The United States should itself cease violating the NPT and lead by example, ceasing to share nuclear weapons with other nations, ceasing to create new nuclear weapons, and working to disarm itself of an arsenal that serves no purpose but threatens apocalypse.

Focus: Clinton, Biden, Sanders - Sep 2, 2015


State Department releases thousands of Clinton emails, 125 contain classified information - Fox News


Clinton wrote classified e-mails sent using private server - The Washington Post


State: No way to know if Clinton emails should have been classified at the time they were sent - Washington Examiner


VIDEO: Full State Department Briefing, Emails Questions Begin at 24 min thru 42 min - C-SPAN.org


Sources: Clinton email markings changed to hide contents, shielding extent of classified info - Fox News


Clinton Told Special Envoy for Middle East Mitchell to Send 'Born Classified' Info to Her Private Email Account - National Review


Hillary Clinton may have broken US secrecy rules with emails from Tony Blair and Downing Street - Telegraph


Tony Blair Shows up in Latest Clinton Emails, Discrediting Hillary's Private Server Excuses - National Review Online


Hillary Clinton emails: Cherie Blair lobbied for Qatari crown prince - The Guardian


Text of all released Secretary Clinton emails - U.S. Department of State


Hillary Clinton emails compromised spy satellite data on North Korean nukes - Washington Times


Hillary's Email Crashed: State Dept IT Staff Didn't Know The Account Was Hers! - Breitbart


State Dept Still Does Not Know Whether Clinton’s Server was Breached - Washington Free Beacon


Exclusive: Hillary Shared An Email Network With The Clinton Foundation - Breitbart


Clinton Enlisted State Employees to Steer Funds to Clinton Foundation Partner - Washington Free Beacon


Feds move to consolidate lawsuits over Hillary Clinton emails, dozens of Freedom of Information Act cases could be placed in front of a single judge - POLITICO


Emails Show How Hillary Clinton Valued Input From Sidney Blumenthal - The New York Times


Blumenthal: Being Hillary Clinton's Private Spy Was a Full-Time Job - gawker.com


Huma complained she wasn't paid enough, the Clinton’s closest aide was able to change her fortunes with a little help from friends: her pay reached $490,000 - The Weekly Standard

 

---------------------------------------------------

POLL: Biden is top choice of Democrats if Clinton falters: Reuters/Ipsos poll - PhillyVoice


POLL: Only One Quarter of Undecided Democratic Primary Voters Have Favorable View of Hillary Clinton - Washington Free Beacon


AFL-CIO’s Trumka to walk with VP Joe Biden on Labor Day - The Boston Globe


Trumka: Democratic field 'still wide open,' Biden has time, early AFL-CIO endorsement conceivable - Yahoo News


VIDEO: AFL-CIO’s Trumka Explains Low Labor Enthusiasm For Clinton, Urges Her To Reject Pacific Trade Agreement - YouTube


Draft Biden super PAC names Eaton New Hampshire director, more staff to be hired - WMUR


Stephen Colbert's Late Show lands Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders - Orlando Sentinel


Sanders to introduce bill targeting high drug prices - TheHill


Bernie Sanders applied for ‘conscientious objector’ status during Vietnam, campaign confirms - ABC


Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak Tweets Support For Bernie Sanders - huffingtonpost.com


Elizabeth Warren says potential vice presidential bid 'something I'm not talking about’ - AP


Women explain why they're anti-Hillary Clinton in the anonymous posting platform Whisper - AOL

 

To contact Bartolo email peaceloverblog[at]yahoo[dot]com (replacing [at] with @, [dot] with .)

Disarm! For a Climate of Peace – Creating an Action Agenda

World Congress on Military and Social Spending

30 Sept – 03 Oct 2016 Technische Universität Berlin, Germany

“Peace” by Bart is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License: http://bit.ly/1NCbPUH

The International Peace Bureau has worked for over 10 years to develop a program on Disarmament for Sustainable Development, with a primary topic being military and social spending. In 2011 we launched the Global Day of Action on Military Spending and in late 2014 a year-round Global Campaign on Military Spending.

The IPB World Congress 2016 will be the next highlight of this campaign, bringing together a wide variety of experts, advocates and speakers from around the globe, and including talks, presentations, roundtables, panel discussions, workshops, information booths, exhibitions, and cultural activities.

Go here: http://ipb2016.berlin

Yemeni drone victim appeals to court to end German role in US strikes

From REPRIEVE

A Yemeni family whose relatives were killed in a US drone strike have appealed to a German court to ensure that a US base in the country is not used for further attacks, which might endanger their lives.
 
In May 2014, a court in Cologne heard evidence from Faisal bin Ali Jaber, an environmental engineer from Sana’a, following revelations that Ramstein air base is used by the US to facilitate American drone strikes in Yemen. Mr Jaber is bringing the case against Germany – represented by international human rights organization Reprieve and its local partner the European Center for Human Rights (ECCHR) – for failing to stop the bases on its territory from being used for the attacks that have killed civilians.
 
Although the court ruled against Mr bin Ali Jaber in the May hearing, it gave him immediate permission to appeal the decision, while the judges agreed with his assertion that it is ‘plausible’ Ramstein air base is crucial in facilitating drone strikes in Yemen. Today’s appeal, filed at the Higher Administrative Court in Münster, asks the German government to end the country’s complicity in the extrajudicial killings.
 
Mr Jaber lost his brother-in-law Salim, a preacher, and his nephew Waleed, a local police officer, when a US strike hit the village of Khashamir on 29 August 2012. Salim often spoke out against extremism, and had used a sermon just days before he was killed to urge those present to reject Al Qaeda.
 
Kat Craig, Legal Director at Reprieve said: “It is now clear that US bases on German territory, such as Ramstein, provide a crucial hub for the launching of drone strikes in countries like Yemen – leading to scores of civilians being killed. Faisal bin Ali Jaber and the countless other victims like him are right to call for an end to European countries’ complicity in these terrible attacks. The German courts have already signalled their serious concerns – now the government must be held accountable for allowing the use of German soil to carry out these killings.”  
 
Andreas Schüller of the ECCHR said: “Drone strikes carried out outside of conflict zones are nothing but extrajudicial targeted killings – the implementation of death sentences without any trial. German authorities are under an obligation to protect individuals – including people living in Yemen – from suffering harm caused by breaches of international law involving Germany, but the exchange of diplomatic notes between the German and US government has to date proven to be wholly unsuitable. There needs to be a public debate on whether Germany is really doing enough to prevent violations of international law and the murder of innocent people.”
 

Talk Nation Radio: Eve Spangler on Israel/Palestine

https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/talk-nation-radio-eve-spangler-on-israelpalestine

Eve Spangler is a sociologist and a human and civil rights activist.  For the last decade, her work has focused on the Israel/Palestine conflict. We discuss her new book, Understanding Israel/Palestine: Race, Nation, and Human Rights in the Conflict.

Total run time: 29:00

Host: David Swanson.
Producer: David Swanson.
Music by Duke Ellington.

Download from Archive or LetsTryDemocracy.

Pacifica stations can also download from AudioPort.

Syndicated by Pacifica Network.

Please encourage your local radio stations to carry this program every week!

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Past Talk Nation Radio shows are all available free and complete at
http://TalkNationRadio.org

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Tell U.S. Institute of Peace to Work for Peace

The U.S. Institute of Peace has a great name, our tax dollars, and a terrible record. Let’s move it in a better direction.

If you’ve never heard of the U.S. Institute of Peace, please keep reading. It works everyday with your money in a fancy new building next to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. It just doesn’t work for peace.

USIP-FB

If you know the USIP’s record and consider it a lost cause, please keep reading. This institute can be made to do some good. A number of us will be meeting with USIP in late September and bringing along this petition. Please click here to sign it.

The petition to USIP reads: “We urge you to oppose U.S. militarism and begin working for an end to U.S. war-making by providing to Congress and the public information on the disastrous results of recent U.S. wars and the superior results of nonviolence and diplomacy. We ask that you recommend to the President of the United States the removal from your board of Stephen Hadley, Eric Edelman, and Frederick M. Padilla, and their replacement by three seasoned peace activists, along with a recommendation to maintain at least three seasoned peace activists on your board at all times — right now there are none.”

The U.S. Institute of Peace is a federal government institute created by a bill signed into law in 1984 by President Ronald Reagan and funded annually by Congress as well as sometimes receiving funding from the Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the military.[1] The law states that the “Secretary of State, the Secretary of Defense, the Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, and the Director of Central Intelligence each may assign officers and employees of his respective department or agency, on a rotating basis to be determined by the Board, to the Institute.”

The Institute has never opposed a U.S. war and claims that it can only support things, not oppose them. But in fact, the law only forbids it from seeking “to influence the passage or defeat of legislation … except that the personnel of the Institute may testify or make other appropriate communication when formally requested to do so by a legislative body, a committee, or a member thereof.” Most U.S. wars, including the war on Libya, the newly revived war on Iraq (and Syria), and the drone wars on Pakistan, Somalia, and Yemen, have been launched without legislation. And, even if there were legislation involved, it would not be at all difficult for USIP to ask a single member of Congress to request its opinion, thereby freeing it to provide its views and its research. USIP makes no claim that it cannot provide the public with information on the negative results of U.S. wars; it simply fails to do so.

The Institute in fact makes recommendations to Congress, including in formally presented testimony, it just recommends things like supporting the Syrian opposition, training and arming troops to fight both ISIS and the Syrian government, and creating a “no fly zone” in Syria, rather than working toward an arms embargo or aid or diplomacy.[2] The Institute has recommended diplomacy with Iran, and could do so in a dozen other cases, although its notion that weapons sales is part of diplomacy may be less than helpful.[3]

The law requires that the USIP Board include 15 voting members, including the Secretaries of State and “Defense,” the President of the National “Defense” University, and 12 members appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate, and each having “practical or academic experience in peace and conflict resolution.” The law also states that “No member of the Board may participate in any decision, action, or recommendation with respect to any matter which directly and financially benefits the member or pertains specifically to any public body or any private or nonprofit firm or organization with which the member is then formally associated or has been formally associated within a period of two years.” There are a number of mechanisms for removing a board member, including 8 or more board members making that recommendation to the President.

The USIP does do some work aimed at peace, including hosting speakers and producing publications aimed at peace, sending skilled mediators into conflict zones, making research grants, holding essay contests, and conducting conflict-resolution trainings, but such efforts are deeply compromised by the following concerns:

USIP board member and chairman, Stephen Hadley, urges the bombing of Syria and the militarization of Ukraine, while encouraging European nations to double their military spending, and himself profiting from war as a board member of Raytheon.[4]

USIP board member Eric Edelman, a former undersecretary at the Pentagon, promotes higher military spending, an attack on Iran, and deployment of nuclear weapons to nations on Russia’s border.[5]

USIP board member Major General Frederick M. Padilla, USMC, is career military.

USIP promotes the overthrow of the Syrian government.[6]

USIP is not known to have ever opposed a U.S. war, U.S. weapons exports, U.S. foreign bases, or U.S. military spending.[7]

USIP promotes trade embargoes, economic austerity programs, and electoral interventions as tools of aggression, not peace building.[8]

USIP funds many more supporters than opponents of militarism.[9]

USIP hosts pro-war talks by leading war advocates.[10]

Appropriate board members for USIP exist in large numbers, and many of them would no doubt be happy to serve. Here are a few examples of the many possible names: Kathy Kelly, Michael McPhearson, Ann Wright, Paul Chappell, Noura Erekat, Dennis Kucinich, David Vine, Matt Daloisio, John Dear, Bruce Gagnon, Phil Donahue, Mel Duncan, David Hartsough, Mubarak Awad, Leslie Cagan, Roy Bourgeois, Cornell West, Lennox Yearwood, Osagyefo Sekou, Phyllis Bennis, Andy Shallal, Helena Cobban, Noam Chomsky, Elliott Adams.

Appropriate events that USIP could host might include:
How to Finally End the Korean War,
Abolition of Armed Drones,
A Plan to Close Overseas Bases,
Why Does NATO Still Exist?,
How Can the Kellogg-Briand Pact Be Complied With?,
What Could $2 Trillion a Year Buy Instead of War?,
Military Abolition and the Costa Rican Model,
Pondering Polling: How Did the U.S. Become Seen as the Greatest Threat to World Peace?,
Pinkerism and the Myth that War Is Vanishing,
WMD Tales From Iraq to Iran,
Vietnam Syndrome: Illness or Health?,
Benefits of Joining the International Criminal Court,
If War Makes Us Less Safe Why Can’t We Stop?,
The Economic and Moral Benefits of Transition to Peaceful Industries,
The ICCPR Ban on War Propaganda,
Diplomacy in Iran: Why Not in Eight Other Places?,
Why Arm Dictatorships?,
Whose Land Is Guantanamo?,
The Convention on the Rights of the Child – Why Not?,
What Is Preventing Spacefaring Powers from Banning Weapons in Space?,
Why Not Reinstate the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty?,
Should Palestinians Have Human Rights?,
Remembering the Maine, the Lusitania, Tonkin Gulf . . . What Would Accurate History Change?,
What Would Compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Look Like?

Reports USIP could usefully write include:
U.S. arms sales to each foreign nation, as compared to the sales of other nations — a report the Congressional Research Service has ceased producing.
U.S. military spending, as compared to non-military government spending — a report the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency has ceased producing.

Initial Signers of the Petition Are:
David Swanson
Coleen Rowley
Heinrich Buecker
Robert Fantina
David Hartsough
Medea Benjamin
Gael Murphy
Kevin Zeese
Jodie Evans
John Heuer
Norman Solomon
Elizabeth Murray
Thomas Drake
Ann Wright
Todd Pierce
Alice Slater
Kent Shifferd
Jeff Cohen
William Binney
Ray McGovern
Kevin Martin
Barbara Wien
Leah Bolger
Patrick Hiller
Jim Haber

Footnotes:
1. http://bit.ly/1JuMmJo
2. http://bit.ly/1KCzVzu
3. http://bit.ly/1LQTvtv
4. http://bit.ly/1JJcvrz
5. ibid
6. http://bit.ly/1EyQM5s
http://bit.ly/1XaJnPN
http://bit.ly/1hQPRDs
7. http://wapo.st/1ig9VPw
8. http://bit.ly/1KCAQA6
9. ibid
10.http://bit.ly/1L0oRYP

 After the Iran Deal: How to Make the Most of the Next 15 Years

By Alice Slater, The Nation

 Iran Nuclear Deal Celebrations

A group of jubilant Iranians cheer and spray artificial snow during street celebrations following the announcement of a landmark nuclear deal. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

A major sticking point for universal support for the Iran deal is the worry expressed repeatedly by doubters and supporters alike, in the plethora of mainstream media coverage, that in 15 years Iran may have the capacity to break out and produce a nuclear bomb only one year after the deal expires. David Petraeus and Dennis Ross, Obama’s former Special Assistant on the Middle East, have actually suggested, in The Washington Post, that we should “put teeth” into the deal by threatening now that “if Iran dashes toward a weapon especially after year 15, that it will trigger the use of force.”

How much better would the public be served if the extensive reporting on the deal also provided the information we need on how we could beat Iran to the punch and honor our own obligations under the 1970 Non-Proliferation Treaty to negotiate for the elimination of nuclear weapons?

First, we must stop provoking Russia and create a climate for negotiations. The United States should agree to a proposal made by Russia and China to negotiate a space weapons ban instead of continuing to block all discussions of a draft treaty they tabled at the UN in Geneva in 2008 and resubmitted this year. We should dismantle NATO, a rusty Cold War holdover, or at least reverse its eastward expansion which we promised Gorbachev would never happen beyond East Germany after the wall came down. And we should bring home the 300 US nuclear weapons now parked in five NATO countries: Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, and Turkey. We should reinstate our 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with Russia, which the United States walked out of in 2002 after 30 years, and remove our new missile bases in Turkey, Poland, and Romania. It is ironic that underpinning the deal that Kennedy negotiated with Khrushchev, to remove Soviet missiles from Cuba, was US removal of its missiles from Turkey. Well, they’re back!

Perhaps Russia would then agree to negotiate with us about eliminating our arsenals of 15,000 deadly nuclear bombs out of the 16,000 still threatening the planet. We could then call the seven other nuclear weapons states to the table—the UK, France, China, India-Pakistan, Israel, and North Korea—to give up their combined arsenals of 1,000 warheads in a negotiated treaty for complete nuclear disarmament. Civil Society has already produced a Model Nuclear Weapons Convention, an official UN document, laying out all the required steps for verified, monitored nuclear disarmament. We know how to do it! This is what we promised in 1970 in the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which provides that we “pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament.” President Obama has recently proposed that the United States spend $1 trillion over the next thirty years for two new nuclear bomb factories, delivery systems, and warheads. The US just tested a dummy bunker buster nuclear warhead in Nevada in August.

It is sad that we are only hearing about Iran’s obligations under the NPT and not about our own broken promises. With the proper cooperative attitude, the United States could easily accomplish verifiable and monitored nuclear disarmament in 15 years, so we won’t have to demonize Iran when the 15 years are up. As Walt Kelly’s Pogo said, “We have met the enemy and he is us!”

Speaking Events

2016

 

March 24, Boone, NC.

 

March 25, Asheville, NC
Battery Park Apartments, 1 Battle Square, rooftop room, noon - 2 p.m.
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War Is A Lie: Second Edition
Published April 5, 2016
Tour begins here:

April 11, Washington, DC, 6:30-8:00 p.m. at Busboys and Poets at 5th and K Streets.
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April 12, Baltimore, MD, 7:30 p.m. at Red Emma's.
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April 14, Bellingham, WA, 7:00-9:00 p.m. at Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship.
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April 15, Seattle, WA
Town Hall Seattle
1119 Eighth Ave (8th and Seneca) 
Seattle, WA 98101
7:30pm
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April 16 Portland, OR

 

April 24, Oneonta, NY at Unitarian Universalist Society of Oneonta.
5:30 discussion with students.
7:00 talk and Q&A with everyone.
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May 28, San Francisco, CA
11 a.m. to 1 p.m., David Swanson interviewed by Daniel Ellsberg, at San Francisco Main Public Library, 100 Larkin Street.
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May 28, Marin County, CA
4 to 6 p.m., David Swanson in conversation with Norman Solomon, at Book Passage, 51 Tamal Vista Blvd., Corte Madera, CA
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May 29, Oakland, CA
3 to 4 p.m., David Swanson interviewed by Cindy Sheehan, at Diesel: A Bookstore, 5433 College Avenue at Kales (near Manila), Oakland, CA
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May 29, Berkeley, CA
7:30 to 9 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, sponsored by the Social Justice Committee and Cynthia Papermaster, 1606 Bonita Ave. (at Cedar), Berkeley, CA
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May 30, Fresno, CA
2 to 4 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at a Peace Fresno event

 


June 11 St. Paul, MN, 6 p.m. at Macalester Plymouth Church Social Hall 1658 Lincoln, St. Paul, MN.
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June 12 Minneapolis, MN, 9 and 11 a.m. at St. Joan's 4533 3rd Ave So, Minneapolis, MN, plus peace pole dedication at 2 p.m.
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Other Events Here.

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