Organizing Notes

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

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Plain Clothes Military Coup in Washington

White House chief of staff John Kelly (a general and former commander in the Marines) is now overseeing a virtual military coup inside the Trump administration

I've just returned last night from my son's wedding on the beach in Morro Bay, California.  It was a beautiful event and a great spot to hold the wedding.  His wife Emily's family came over from Taiwan - the second time we'd been with them and we spent some time going to various state parks and wildlife preserves along the coast.  Particularly cool was seeing an Elephant Seal rookery at Piedras Blancas.  Two of my sisters (I have five of them) were able to come which was also very lovely for all of us.

We arrived home late last night soon after Trump had spoken to the nation about extending America's longest, and likely most expensive, war in Afghanistan.  It was no surprise that more US troops will be going to the war zone as his new crew of military brass have convinced him that the US can't 'cut and run' from the region.  The fact that the deep state has inserted John Kelly as Trumps Chief of Staff indicates that 'the Donald' will really just be serving as a figure-head in the White House but the real power lies in the hands of the cadre of militarists that now occupy many top positions in his administration.  They will be baby sitting Trump.

The Guardian in the UK spelled it all out quite clearly:

By marching US troops back up the Afghan hill, having previously solemnly vowed to march them down and out of the country, Trump risks the worst of both worlds: leaving the US and its allies neither up nor down, without a clearly defined mission, and stuck in the middle of a worsening conflict.

His speech on Afghanistan on Monday night was long delayed, and it is easy to see why. White House advisers had been arguing for months over what to do about the 16-year-old war, America’s longest. When the speech came, there were no new ideas or initiatives. Instead Trump retained the main planks of Barack Obama’s policy and tried to dress it up as something fresh.

He has committed the US to waging an open-ended conflict with no limit on its scope or duration, and with no agreed measure of what constitutes victory. Now Britain and other NATO allies will be under pressure to perform a similar volte-face, and increase their combined troop deployments above the current level of roughly 6,500.

They were opposed by Steve Bannon and other champions of Trump’s nationalist, “America first” platform, which pledged to end foreign entanglements. Bannon was dismissed from his post as chief strategist last week.

Despite his efforts to justify his about-turn in his prime time TV speech, Trump will find it difficult to convince his domestic supporters, and his foreign allies, that he has a workable policy. And his bad relations with NATO mean he may struggle to get the European troops he wants as the US once again marches up the Afghan hill.

Let's just hope that 'the NATO allies' will think twice before following the US war machine further into this quagmire in Afghanistan - the grave yard of empires.

Let's hope that the liberal Democrats, who had no problem when Obama expanded the Afghanistan war, will also find themselves now able to question and oppose this never ending mistake.

Obviously those who really want to know the truth understand that the military industrial complex loves the Afghanistan occupation - their profits have been massive during these past 16 years.  Also we know that the CIA is heavily involved in the drug trade as the opium from Afghanistan is a big money maker.  In addition the western corporate mining interests have their greedy eyes fixed on the underground profits that are available.

The so-called war in Afghanistan is really about nothing other than securing the country, no matter how many civilians must be killed, to ensure the on-going profits for these corporate pirates that are in control of the US government.  They've held power during all the recent administrations (since Kennedy was killed) but now the curtain has been pulled away as this plain clothes military coup has been put in place.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Sunday Song


Friday, August 18, 2017

Once We Were Tribal



Driving our rental car last night from Los Angeles to Morro Bay we were listening to KPFK (Non-Commercial Pacifica Radio) and they were playing this clip from now deceased Native American activist/poet John Trudell.

I loved it and happy to share it here.

Spoken word by John Trudell - Track 18 of Descendants Now Ancestors CD - DNA.

Once they were tribal. How were they transformed? How do we protect ourselves and our children from the Predator? How do we decontaminate, decolonize, deprogram?

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Heading to California & Other Bits


Mary Beth and I head to Morro Bay, California tomorrow for several days to be with my son Julian and his wife Emily and some of our combined families.  Two of my sisters are coming and Emily's mom, dad and brother have come over from Taiwan.  Julian's mom will be there as well along with a couple of her grandchildren. 

Julian and Emily have been in the states for about two months - he was working at some debate camps and they've been touring across the south and southwest in recent weeks.  They got married in Taiwan last January and are going to hold another beach ceremony in Morro Bay for the stateside folks who could not make the trip to Taiwan.  So it should be alot of fun for all of us.

It's been a busy week for me - doing several media interviews which can be listened to here, here, here, here, and here.

Once we return home next week I'll have to get right to work doing final preparations for our Navy Blue Angels airshow protest in Brunswick on August 26.  Then I'll be doing a taping of my public access TV show on August 28.

Our Maine Peace Walk is approaching fast (Oct 13-21) as is the Global Network's annual Keep Space for Peace Week (Oct 7-14).  In addition we have our Aegis 9 trial coming up with jury selection on September 7 in West Bath District Court. So it will be an active fall around here.

Another thing I've been up to lately is working on a committee to organize a 'Close all US foreign military bases' national conference for next January that will be held in Baltimore.  It's a great group of folks and we've already held two conference calls to set things in motion.  Sometimes working on these kinds of events can cause you to pull the hair out of your head but our committee is really doing very well together.

As word has spread about the new coalition that we've created to close US bases the organizing committee is hearing from activists all over the world.  Here is one message we got from folks in Germany.

Subject: Duelmen Army Depot, Germany
Dear Friends, we live in Germany, Duelmen, a place where the US Army has opened a new APS (Army Prepositioned Stocks) set in the former Tower Barracks at May 12th, 2017. [The APS program supports the National Military Strategy by strategically prepositioning warfighting stocks afloat and ashore at critical worldwide locations.] This is an operation for ERI/Atlantic Resolve. They have started to store 12,000 pieces of weapons and equipment (modern howitzers M109 Paladin, Air defense systems - we think: HIMARS and Bradley linebacker, etc).

We started a new peace group "Friedensfreunde Duelmen" as our answer. Our goals are "Talking with the Russians, negotiations about mutual controls of weapons and manoeuvres".

We try to get in contact with citizens in Zutendaal/Belgium and in Eygelshoven/Netherlands, little towns 300 miles away from Duelmen, where similar bases are planned.

So we appreciate your initiative very much and try our best to share it with everybody we know: Go tell it to the mountains, over the hills and everywhere. ...
We will keep you informed about our actions.

Michael and Penelope

'It's crazier than I could have ever imagined'



Journalist Abby Martin exposes Zionism on Joe Rogan Podcast.

Taxpayers in the US are subsidizing most of Israel's illegal and genocidal crackdown on the Palestinian people.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

U.S. Must Sign Peace Treaty with North Korea



Bruce Gagnon, coordinator for Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space, joins RT America’s Natasha Sweatte to discuss tensions between the US and North Korea and the former’s culpability in the ongoing mutual hostility.

White Dispossession of America



Demographics show that in just a few years from now people of color will be the majority population in the US.  Many on the right fear that day and much of their current insanity and white supremacy organizing is based on this coming reality.

This video gives you a good glimpse of how one white man of privilege thinks.