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

With a new administration in Washington it will be a challenge to get the 'liberals' to hold Biden-Harris to the few 'progressive promises' they made during their campaign. Biden is bringing back many of Bush's neo-cons to head his foreign policy. I'll be on this case without hesitation.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

IRISH SPEAKER TURNED AWAY FROM U.S.

We arrived in Colorado Springs about an hour ago after a long but fun ride west from Maine. We did about 12 hours a day (with a few meals stops of course) and nights in hotels along the highway.

Last night we got a call while driving through Kansas (the Saudia Arabia of wind) from Danien Moran who was coming to the U.S. to join us in Colorado and then move on to Nebraska with us. Damien is from Ireland and was involved in the Pitstop Plowshares in 2003 at Shannon airport in Dublin to protest the U.S. military using the civilian airport as a refueling base on its way to bomb Iraq. The plowshares action symbolically hammered on a U.S. war plane and the activists were eventually acquitted before an Irish court.

In recent times Damien has been living in Poland and helping to organize protests against the proposed Bush deployment of "missile defense" interceptors in that country.

Damien told us last night that after he landed in Chicago, "As well as a a plowshares acquittal to my name I now have the privilege of being sent packing on a one-way flight from Chicago airport to Warsaw just 5 hours after I had landed. I was immediately detained and questioned by Homeland Security officers about our Pitstop Plowshares action at Shannon in February, 2003 (http://www.warontrial.com/), why I was arrested, why our group 'sabotaged' U.S. military property. I informed them about our action and acquittal with pleasure. They were none too pleased. When the gung-ho Officer Bock shouted out that deportation was the least of my problems I decided there was no point of pushing his buttons too far. I made my anti-war statement, explaining that I was en route to visit my brother in Virginia, then planned going to Colorado Springs and Nebraska to speak at anti-militarism conferences/panels and demonstrations. I've been traveling and waiting in airports non-stop for the past 30 hours so now it's time to hit the hay. I will write a more extensive report tomorrow. Unfortunately I've lost $350 dollars in flight expenses while the Global Network (http://www.space4peace.org/) Against Weapons in Space that invited me have been setback over $1,000. If anyone has spare change to donate and help with costs (will be dedicated to anti-militarist/missile defense/direct action purposes) please let me know. No Pasaran (New motto of U.S. Homeland Security dissenters)."

So far our other international speakers are entering the country without any problems. We begin protesting on Monday.

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