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by Debra Sweet. July 10, 2014: Syracuse, NY. Anti-drone protester Mary Anne Grady was sent to county jail for a maximum 12 month sentence for violating a temporary "Order of Protection" granted by a County Judge to explicitly to protect the Commander Evans of Hancock Air Force Base, who said he wanted to keep protesters "out of his driveway." Years of non-violent protest, including civil disobedience, led by the Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and Stop the Wars, have focused public attention on the role of Hancock in remotely piloting US drones around the world, particularly Reaper drones over Afghanistan, and also in training drone operators.
By Debra Sweet Curt Wechsler writes on FireJohnYoo.net "The selection of John Yoo to fill an endowed faculty chair at Boalt Hall has raised righteous indignation across the board, from academics to un-credentialed people of conscience. The appointment represents a huge leap in institutional complicity in war crimes.
When ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement buses tried to drop children off at a US detention center in Murrietta, CA, last week, a crowd of anti-immigrant "go home" protesters blocked the buses. The sight recalled nothing so much as the White Citizens Councils greeting Freedom Riders in the South, or racist crowds demanding segregation of schools.
In a most bizarre twist, the Dean of Morgan State University's Journalism school suggested sending the children to Guantanamo because there's a lot of empty space there. NO! Close that torture camp now.
A hearty "thank you" to Courage to Resist, which just issued a call to "all U.S. military personnel to resist any effort to pursue a new military attack on Iraq via troops, bombs, drones or any other means. In keeping with our Mission Statement, we affirm that, just as there was never any legitimate reason for the United States to send military forces to Iraq in the past, there is not now any reason for the United States to participate militarily in the affairs of the people of Iraq."
It is absolutely essential to put before the US public the need for visible resistance to US re-escalation and occupation of Iraq.
Vast Surveillance; Denying Women Access to birth control & abortion; Detention & Deportation of Children
A World Can't Wait Panel at the Left Forum, June 1, 2014 With 1100+ bases, the US military is the single largest user of fossil fuels in this century, while at the same time it fights wars and engages in occupations both to ensure strategic access to those resources and deny rivals control. In its military operations, it uses weapons of mass destruction, such as Agent Orange (in Vietnam) and depleted uranium (in the former Yugoslavia and in Iraq) which cause horrendous suffering including cancer and birth defects and remain over time as potent environmental toxins. The ecological effects of war, such as the burning of oil fields and the destruction of large urban constructions, spreads poisonous fumes and dust, with devestating effects on land, humans, flora and fauna.
A World Can't Wait Panel at the Left Forum, June 1, 2014 CUNY has restored ROTC on a number of campuses after it was driven out by protest 40 years ago. General David Petraeus, architect of the "surge" in Iraq, one-time CENTCOM and CIA Director, is teaching at Macaulay Honors College. The US military is shifting recruiting to diverse urban campuses like CUNY, saying that in 15 years it needs officers who "reflect the geographic and demographic diversity of the country." What is the challenge for those who want to stop unjust wars? How did students and professors at Rutgers University, a NJ state institution, force the withdrawal of Condoleezza Rice as commencement speaker?
A World Can't Wait Panel at the Left Forum, June 1, 2014. The US government collects billions of bytes of "metadata" on phone calls, emails, bank traffic, text messaging, chats - content, recipients, etc. - storing everything for future use, if not needed immediately. Edward Snowden and others in the field say the amount of data collected doubles every two years. The ramifications of this data collection and storage process goes beyond issues of civil liberties and abstract rights.
by Debra Sweet Anand Gopal has written a fascinating book after learning Pashto and living in Afghanistan for 5 years. No Good Men Among the Living, through the stories of 3 Afghans, tells the tale of how the US quickly defeated the Taliban in 2001, and then so oppressed, alienated, and night-raided the population, that they revived the Taliban, and created thousands of indidigenous operators becoming enriched by US contracts.
by Debra Sweet Today, help on challenging how people in the U.S. are looking at "helping" Iraq: Larry Everest writes in Revolution, More U.S. Killings and War Crimes in Iraq? HELL NO! today:
When you hear the commander-in-chief of the U.S. empire talk about freedom and giving people "the opportunity to forge their own future," here's what that has meant for the people of Iraq:
by Debra Sweet N THE EVENT of U.S. bombing of Iraq, choose the best protest location in your city/town, and call on people to go there at 5:00 pm the day of the attack, or, in the case of an evening attack, the next day at 5:00 pm.
On Friday, June 13, a group of protesters, organized by War Criminals Watch/World Can't Wait and KnowDrones.com gathered outside Hunter College as families and students began to gather for the Hunter College High School commencement. This otherwise happy occasion was marred by the fact that the Distinguised Graduate award was about to be given to the Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Avril Haines - in absentia (it would be accepted for her by a Hunter High School assistant principal). The fact that the school administration kept the award quiet until two days before the ceremony is an indication of how unacceptable the choice for this year's award was.
by Debra Sweet Within days or hours, the U.S. may be bombing Iraq again. John Kerry predicts drone strikes on Iraq. Democracy Now says today, "The U.S.S. George H.W. Bush aircraft carrier has recently arrived in the Persian Gulf. The carrier is accompanied by the U.S.S. Philippine Sea guided-missile cruiser and the U.S.S. Truxtun guided-missile destroyer, both of which carry Tomahawk missiles that can reach Iraq." It's time to be in the streets in protest, demanding NO further war on Iraq.
A Pakistani High Court ordered Pakistani police to lodge a complaint against former CIA station chief Jonathan Banks on Thursday, for the killing of civilians in U.S. drone strikes along the country's northwestern border with Afghanistan.Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui of Islamabad High Court made the order in a case filed by Karim Khan, a North Waziristan resident and an anti-drone activist whose son and brother were both killed in a drone strike in 2009.
by Debra Sweet Guantanamo attorney Ramzi Kassem, in his op-ed in Saturday's New York Times, A View from Gitmo, said, “Guantánamo remains at its core a lawless place.” The torture camp was set in Cuba in 2002 to avoid U.S. and international law, but mostly to provide a place where the Bush regime could make it known, “here, we can do anything we choose to you.”
Protest Obama when he speaks at the Democratic Party Fundraiser.
Tuesday, June 17th - 5:30pm
Gothem Hall. 1356 Broadway. (35 & 36th Sts) New York City
Bring your signs and banners.
Hunter College High School will be giving its Distinguished Graduate award to the Deputy Director of the CIA, Avril Haines, at this year’s senior commencement. The administration has tried to keep it quiet, hoping to avoid criticism.
Haines is a top official of an agency guilty of torture of detainees, launching drone attacks that have killed or maimed thousands of civilians and that has a long record of complicity in the overthrow of governments and the occupations of many countries. Millions of people have suffered from the dictatorships that followed in their wake.
By Debra Sweet As he gave vague outlines of developing US military strategy while speaking at the West Point commencement last week, President Obama affirmed that he believes “in American exceptionalism with every fiber of my being.” The previous day, he had announced that instead of all U.S. troops leaving in 2014, as had been the mantra, 9,800 would stay at least until 2016. We don't know what they will be doing, but securing the bases they've built from where secret operations — drones? missions into Pakistan? — are launched from is one likely explanation.
By Debra Sweet Memorable moments from the World Can't Wait panels this weekend at the Left Forum, attended by 240, and soon to be available on video:
US “Dirty” Wars, Targeted Killing & Secret Operations Supercede Military Occupations – But Are Still Illegitimate
Join us at the Left Forum, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 524 W. 59th St, New York City on Sunday, June 1, 10:00 - 11:50 am to hear this panel on US dirty wars, especially drone warfare. It not only will provide historical background and context to the issues facing us and the world today, it is action-oriented, grappling with how to challenge how people think. Come, participate and help plan mass action to stop the crimes of your government.
Join us at the Left Forum, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 524 W. 59th St, New York City on Saturday 5/31/2014, 12:00 - 1:50 pm to hear hear this panel on vast surveillance. The US government collects billions of bytes of “metadata” on phone calls, emails, bank traffic, text messaging, chats -- content, recipients, etc. – storing everything for future use, if not needed immediately. Edward Snowden and others in the field say the amount of data collected doubles every two years. The ramifications of this data collection and storage process goes beyond issues of civil liberties and abstract rights.
Join us at the Left Forum, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 524 W. 59th St, New York City on Saturday 5/31/2014 at 5:00 to 6:45pm to hear this panel on imperialism and ecological devastation. It not only will provide historical background and context to these issues facing us and the world today, it is action-oriented, grappling with how to challenge how people think. Share this with your friends, family, and colleagues!
Come to the Left Forum -5/31 & 6/1/2014 -in New York City to hear World Can't Wait/War Criminals Watch empowering 4 panels. Share this widely and invite all your friends, fellow & sister workers and family! Our first panel, Sat. 5/31- 3:20-4:50 pm is on CUNY students present struggle to shut down its restored ROTC after 40 years off campus & end Gen David Petraeus' tenure at CUNY.
by Debra Sweet What would it take? We are wrangling over this. A lot of people thought that to close Guantanamo it would take electing Barack Obama. Our guest on World Can't Wait's national conference call this past Thursday evening, Carlos Warner, said he thought that in 2008. A federal public defender for Northeast Ohio, Carlos represents 13 men still detained there, which he has visited "at least 30 times." He describes his clients as "artists, poets, musicians, and some just regular guys who have had a very difficult life." These are the stories & voices we will bring to life this coming Friday in protests around the world.
By World Can't Wait It would be hard to have missed Michelle Obama's photo with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls, displaying sad eyes as she gave the pre-Mothers Day President's talk Saturday, assuring the public that the US would do everything it can to help rescue the hundreds of girls kidnapped by the Islamic fundamentalist group Boko Haram in Nigeria. We hope this turns out like the New York Police Department's Twitter campaign recently, which asked for photos of people with #MyNYPD, and got barraged with photos of police brutality from Occupy protests, stop & frisk arrests and unjust murders by the NYPD.