Suz and I spent the afternoon at the Peace Festival site, at the corner of 17th and Constitution, helping the staff and volunteers of Operation Ceasefire set up the stage and tents for Saturday and Sunday’s activities. Well, we were very encouraging to those who were doing the heavy lifting anyway!
We first ran into Tina, who was serving up food for the volunteers:
“Working in the concert production business, I was thrilled to be able to donate my time to the cause. Plus, I have a soon-to-be draft-age son and two more behind him, so this effort matters to me on a very personal level.
In just two days, United for Peace and Justice will bring huge numbers of people into the streets of Washington to tell the White House and Congress: It's time to end this disastrous war, bring all our troops home, and expend all the resources necessary to fully rebuild the devastated Gulf Coast.
We very much hope you can make it to DC this weekend -- but whether or not you'll be joining us in the streets, you can lend critically needed support to this mobilization by making a donation today.
We have three easy ways to donate:
by credit card online at http://www.unitedforpeace.org/donate
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective
Thursday 22 September 2005
There are two kinds of people in American politics today: those who know our basic right to vote and have every vote counted is imperiled, and those who have no idea such a basic right is at risk.
Those who know our voting rights are at risk - from electronic touch-screen voting machines that use unverified software, offer no paper ballots, transfer data via modem to hackable mainframes, and are manufactured by companies whose officers are in the hip pocket of the GOP, and all this is just for starters - have gone to great lengths to inform the uninformed.
If you're looking for an interesting and enjoyable way to spend this Friday evening - - - open these attachments for details. Pacifica Radio's Washington Bureau's fundraiser at Busboys & Poets Restaurant located at 14th and V. Streets N.W. presents Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!, Author Michael Eric Dyson, Damu Smith of Black Voices For Peace and Cindy Sheehan, the anti-war Mom who camped outside President Bush's vacation ranch.
There are now two reservation options...$150 will include the jazz reception, the dinner and the awards ceremony. The $50 reservation would be for the awards ceremony only. Please open the attachment for full details . Seating is limited! The number to call for reservations is 202-588-0999 x 348.
First and foremost, I ask that we pray for everyone living in the path of Hurricane Rita.
But God will not be mocked, and God will create it's own "Shock and Awe", it's time for change, the world has been living under the path of Hurricane George for way to long, and it is time for the people to rebuild not only this country, but our world!
On Friday, September 23, 2005 the Hip Hop community will be having a powerful town hall meeting at the Congressional Black Caucus Legislative Conference in Washington DC, titled "The Hurricane and Hip Hop - From Storm to Strategy", this town hall meeting will be looking at a number of violations that took place before, during, and after Hurricane Katrina (See Attachment), and looking into the statements, made by Kanye West, that the current President of the United States doesn't like some of it's citizens just because of there race or economic standing.
With the antiwar demonstration in Washington this weekend in mind, Tomdispatch is posting a new piece today by Michael Schwartz, "Why Withdrawal Makes Sense." http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=23549 He suggests the essential fallacy in all gradual withdrawal or draw-down plans -- the belief that the United States military in Iraq is part of the solution (a bulwark, say, against civil war in that country), rather than part of the problem. He makes clear that, while the future is obviously unknown, there is good reason to believe that an American withdrawal in quick-time would quickly lessen violence in Iraq and he explains exactly why.
Antiwar activists target Pelosi and other congressional Dems
By Camille T. Taiara
San Francisco Bay Guardian
When Cindy Sheehan arrived in San Francisco Sept. 9, she was looking for an answer to the same simple question she's been posing for months: Why did her son - a US soldier killed in Iraq - have to die?
Yet this time she directed her inquiry not at President George W. Bush and the people who led us to war but at the members of Congress who let them. Sheehan's new focus coincides with a strategic shift by United for Peace and Justice, one of the antiwar movement's leading coalitions, as it prepares for mass protests planned Sept. 24-26 in San Francisco and other cities across the country.
Published on Wednesday, September 21, 2005 by the Korea Herald
by William Pfaff
PARIS - There is inevitability to what is happening in Iraq that was visible from the start. The Vietnam war had been, so to speak, an honest war. The Iraq war is a dishonest war. The outcome will be identical.
President Lyndon Johnson, the Bundy brothers, Robert McNamara and Dean Rusk really did believe that the Chinese Communists ran the Vietnam war, and would exploit victory there to motivate Communist uprisings throughout Southeast Asia and beyond.
They didn't appreciate that the world isn't so simple. The Communists won and nothing happened.
By Jim Hightower
George W is the kind of guy who'll gladly sacrifice your life for his country.
Not only was he a cheerleader when he was in college at Yale, but he also was an energetic cheerleader for the war that was raging in Vietnam at the time. Of course, he cheered from a safe distance, using family connections to make certain that he personally would not have to do any fighting.
Now that he's in the White House, Bush is cheerleader-in-chief for his own war. In a recent speech designed to shore-up sagging public support for his misadventure in Iraq, he referred to the terrible fact that nearly 2000 Americans have already died there. Of these dead troops, Bush said, "We owe them something," by which he meant continuing the war. What a callous payback: Many have died, so many more must die to pay tribute to those who've died. That's a war rationale chasing its own tail.
By DOUGLASS K. DANIEL, Associated Press Writer
Bush officials bristle at the suggestion the war in Iraq might look anything like Vietnam. Yet just as today's anti-war protests recall memories of yesteryear, President Bush's own words echo those of President Johnson in 1967, a pivotal year for the U.S. in Vietnam.
"America is committed to the defense of South Vietnam until an honorable peace can be negotiated," Johnson told the Tennessee Legislature on March 15, 1967. Despite the obstacles to victory, the president said, "We shall stay the course."
After 14 Marines died in a roadside bombing on Aug. 3, Bush declared: "We will stay the course, we will complete the job in Iraq. And the job is this: We'll help the Iraqis develop a democracy."
ACTION ALERT * UNITED FOR PEACE AND JUSTICE
www.unitedforpeace.org | 212-868-5545 | Click to subscribe
END THE WAR ON IRAQ!
BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW!
Justice for the People of the Gulf Coast
3 Days of Action in Washington, D.C.
September 24-26, 2005
In this alert:
Housing & Volunteers Needed!
What to Bring
Contingents in the March
Tabling at the Peace & Justice Festival
We Need Your Financial Support!
Still haven't made your plans to join us in Washington, D.C. this weekend? This 3-day anti-war mobilization promises to be the most dynamic, powerful peace and justice gathering in years. We're at a real turning point: A solid and growing majority of this country is now against the war, and there is deep discontent nationwide with the appalling priorities of the Bush Administration and the shameful government response to Hurricane Katrina. This is the time to stand up and demand a dramatic change of political direction. Don't miss your chance to be part of this extraordinary series of events!
The federal government flexed it’s muscles on this first day of testimony
by peace activists, charging two defendants with contempt of court, and
interpreting the charges in the indictment to make it easier for the
prosecution to attain a conviction.
Senior U.S. District Judge Hon. Thomas J. McAvoy charged Peter DeMott and
Teresa Grady with contempt of court for testifying about the fact that there
was a previous trial.
McAvoy previously informed the defendants they were forbidden from
testifying on a laundry list of topics including: the illegality of the Iraq
war, international law and its relevance to their actions, the mandates in
9/21/2005, 9:16 p.m. CT
By ELIZABETH WHITE
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — Anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan pledged Wednesday to "force change to happen" during protest speeches outside the White House and Capitol.
Sheehan arrived in Washington after a three-week cross-country bus tour that began near President Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas. She is expected to participate in an anti-Iraq war rally Saturday that organizers hope could draw tens of thousands of people.
Sheehan, whose 24-year-old son, Army Spc. Casey Sheehan, was killed last year in Iraq, wants Bush to explain why he sent the United States to war and say what steps he will take to end the conflict.
By Michael Zweig
I am pleased to report that the trailer/preview for the documentary video Meeting Face to Face: Iraqi Labor Leaders Tour the U.S. - June 2005 is now complete and available. Please click: Meeting Face to Face to view the Web page for the documentary and see the trailer (7 minutes 17 seconds).
In June 2005 six senior Iraqi trade union leaders toured the United States hosted by U.S. Labor Against the War, visiting 25 cities and speaking to several thousand unionists, peace activists, and others. This documentary captures the energy and emotions of the tour while expressing the important substantive message Iraqi workers want to convey to all Americans :
All of us will be in Washington to let this administration and the Congress know this war needs to end. Change will happen in the house and senate. Once we leave Washington, we need to be well-informed and emboldened to continue lobbying our representatives in Washington to be among those demanding and working toward ending the war.
This week-end is the perfect time to share every known method to accomplish this goal!
UFPJ is sponsoring a
LEGISLATIVE ACTION TENT
Reserve a table for your group or organization today!
Display Materials * Distribute Proposals * Discuss Initiatives * Offer training * Help educate Provide Petitions * Exchange ideas
Thursday September 22, 2005
BUSH in Washington, DC: President Bush gets a briefing on the War on Terror and will then deliver a speech on it around noon at the Pentagon. Later in the day Bush welcomes King Abdullah of Jordan to the White House. [White House; Congress Daily, 9/19/05]
NEW* MEHLMAN in Washington, DC – 12:30 PM: Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Ken Mehlman will address more than five hundred pastors of the National Coalition of Latino Clergy and Christian Leaders (CONLAMIC) on Thursday, September 22nd, 2005. As part of the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, Chairman Mehlman's remarks will reflect the Party's on-going commitment to reaching out to the Hispanic Americans. [RNC Release]
Thursday September 22, 12:34 am ET
Strategic planning session held on electoral strategies for the 2006 election cycle
WASHINGTON, Sept. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- This Sunday, September 25, Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) will host a Strategic Planning Session for the 2006 election cycle, marking the initiation of a coordinated effort within the Democratic Party to embrace the pro-peace movement. The Strategic Planning Session will be held at the UDC David A. Clarke School of Law, Firebird Inn - Building 38, B-Level, 4200 Connecticut Avenue, NW from 10:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
PDA will be joined by: Co-Chairs of Congressional Progressive Caucus Rep. Lynn Woolsey and Rep. Barbara Lee; Dean of the Congressional Black Caucus Rep. John Conyers, Jr.; nationwide Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) activists and key organizers, Democratic Strategists Steve Cobble (PDA), Gary Flowers (Rainbow/PUSH), Butch Wing (Rainbow/PUSH), antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan, and Actress/Activist Mimi Kennedy ("Abby" from Dharma & Greg) and other Congressional aides.
By Sarah Ferguson
The Village Voice
Wednesday 21 September 2005
Peace mom takes her message to the president, Congress, and a lot of television crews.
Cindy Sheehan brought her anti-war crusade to Washington, DC, on Wednesday, arriving with a caravan of three RVs and several cars ferrying about three dozen military families and Iraq War veterans on the final leg of their 21-day Bring Them Home Now tour.
The tour included members of Gold Star Families for Peace, which Sheehan helped found, Military Families Speak Out, Iraq Veterans Against the War, and Veterans for Peace. They set off from their encampment outside Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas, on August 31 and covered 51 cities in 28 states in a hell-bent sprint to mobilize public opinion against the war in Iraq while building momentum for what they hope will be a 100,000-strong peace march in DC this Saturday.
To view PDF and contribute to placing this ad in newspapers, go here.
Katrina is the Iraq War Come Home to Roost
Time to Recall the National Guard from Iraq
By Kevin Zeese
As I watched the scenes on television -- soldiers driving by dead bodies in the street, wayward people looking like refugees, soldiers pointing their guns at civilians -- I could not help but think of Baghdad, but it was New Orleans. The reports of people on the ground were even worse:
“Police drove by, windows rolled up, thumbs up signs. National guard trucks rolled by, completely empty, soldiers with guns cocked and aimed at them. Nobody stopped to drop off water. A helicopter dropped a load of water, but all the bottles exploded on impact due to the height of the helicopter.
Comments for Congressional hearing on Iraq exit strategy, Sept. 15, 2005
By Tom Hayden
Madame Chair and members,
Today you commence a vital shift in our government’s official discourse on Iraq, from how to win the war in Iraq to how to withdraw troops and end the occupation. This change of paradigm is overdue, is in keeping with public sentiment, and begins to fill a dangerous vacuum. We cannot accept a faith-based commitment to “stay the course
"As the Executive Director of the Center on Conscience
& War and part of the GI Rights Hotline where we speak
daily to our men and women in uniform, I bring you the
words of the soldiers themselves. The Center has been
a voice for soldiers since 1940. We have spent almost
65 years trying to end war, one soldier at a time.
Let me give you their voices now:
A Special Op, career, in his thirties, called us prior
to being deployed to Iraq. Special Ops are train to
allow nothing to get in the way of their mission. They
can even shot their own commanding officer if he
stands in the way of completing their mission. "I was
The Costs of Quagmire
The death and destruction strewn by hurricane Katrina may equal or even exceed the death toll of U.S. soldiers in the Iraq War. But while 6,000 miles separates the two, the links between war overseas and the fate of those in Katrina’s wake are closely interwoven.
The cost of having over 6,000 National Guardsmen stationed from Mississippi and Louisiana far overseas in Iraq is just being felt as the region seeks to deal with the horrific aftermath of hurricane Katrina.
Headlines across the nation highlighted the looting, the need for more rescue operations, and the need for boots on the ground to help with reconstruction—all tasks that the Guard is asked to perform.
HEAR OUR CRY*
I am a concerned father of two, a grandfather of two and a taxpayer. Hear our cry, Mr. President, hear our cry: end this quagmire of a war and bring our troops home.
Make no mistake about my support for our men and women who are in harm’s way.
I salute the men and women of the U.S. armed services and reserve units who so bravely and courageously are serving in Iraq today. Theirs is a gallant battle.
To the families of those valiant soldiers who have given their last measure of full devotion for our beloved country, my heartfelt sympathy for the loss of your sons and daughters, husbands and wives, fathers and brothers, neighbors and friends. They are truly America’s heroes and who are deeply missed.
The War at Home and the War Abroad
Gene Bruskin, Co Convenor, US Labor Against the War
September 15, 2005
I want to thank Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey and the Congressional Out of Iraq Caucus for their principled and critical efforts to end what was a predictably disastrous war in Iraq, at a time when disaster has predictably struck our own nation. There could not be a more timely moment to press this issue. Bush is caught between Iraq, and a hard place.
I am here to speak on behalf of US Labor Against the War, a national network of more than 120 labor organizations representing millions of workers from across our nation. We have witnessed a dramatic growth in opposition to the war in the labor movement this year, first in the overwhelming response to our national tour of Iraqi trade unionists in June and then in the powerful support for the resolution to bring the troops home at the national AFL-CIO convention in July.
REMARKS FROM ELLEN BARFIELD, VETERANS FOR PEACE BOARD MEMBER
Veterans for Peace is proud to join Representative Woolsey, other elected officials, and all the
other organizations here at this rally to yet again demand that the war in Iraq end.
Vets for Peace helped launch the "Bring Them Home NOW!" campaign with the then quite
new Military Families Speak Out in the summer of 2003, shortly after Bush's infamous and
reckless challenge to the Iraqi resistance, "Bring 'em on!" We meant "Bring Them Home
NOW" back then, and we have continued to say it ever since. The campaign now includes the
From Tomdispatch today, Michael Klare writes on a desperately under-covered subject, particularly relevant as the antiwar demonstration in Washington approaches this weekend: Iraqi oil and the American occupation. "More Blood, Less Oil, The Failed U.S. Mission to Capture Iraqi Petroleum" http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=22859
points out a striking irony -- the American military occupation of Iraq has, in fact, driven Iraqi oil further out of reach of the market (at a moment when it was especially needed). As I say in my introduction to Klare's piece, two years-plus into the occupation of Iraq, we now know that the iconic protest sign, "No Blood for Oil" should actually have read: "Blood for No Oil." Don't miss this one.