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.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

BACK ON THE MAINLAND


  • I am at the airport in Los Angeles with a six-hour wait for the red-eye flight to Philly and then home to Maine. It's a 24-hour trip back from Honolulu. Luckily I've got a good book (Blood on the Tracks: The Life & Times of S. Brian Willson).
  • The conference was a wonderful event (I'll write more about it once I get home). There were excellent speakers there from all over the Pacific and many indigenous people from across the Pacific as well. The indigenous message was continually weaved into the event which made it a remarkably moving experience.
  • We stayed in the only family-owned hotel in Waikiki which was about 4 blocks from the beach. One day I had the chance to walk down to the beach, step onto the sand, look around for a minute, and then head back to the hotel in time to catch the van for the start of the event. I never got in the water....rats.
  • Much of the conference tied together U.S. corporate and military policy of domination of the Asia-Pacific region. There is no doubt that the U.S. is going after China in a big way. China is being demonized in the minds of the American people (as the next great enemy) and many people were quoting Hillary Clinton's recent statement that U.S. foreign and military policy must now "pivot" toward the region which is code for "we've got to contain China." One person reported that Henry Kissinger's new book "On China" concludes that war with China is brewing.
  • My talk on U.S. expansion of "missile defense" in the region was well received. Got several requests for copies of it including from one Chinese woman who is regarded as a leading researcher/writer on her country.
  • I was able to make good connections with key organizers from Oahu and Kauai in preparation for our Feb 19-21 Global Network meetings with key Hawaiian activists when we stop there in 2012 on our way to Jeju Island.
  • I was also able to meet with fellow advisory board members Christine Ahn and Imok Cha from the Save Jeju Campaign yesterday to discuss where the effort should be going. Christine and I stood up in front of the conference yesterday and asked that the participants support a statement of solidarity being sent to the villagers on Jeju Island. They resoundingly applauded their support for such a statement.
  • Several people expressed interest in joining the Global Network's 20th anniversary space organizing conference on Jeju Island Feb 24-26.
  • I just spoke with Mary Beth and she put our dog Seamus to sleep today as his tiny frail body was increasingly in pain. He had a good long life and was buried next to our other dog Red on our friend Rosie's wooded land along the estuary near Reed State Park. We will miss the little guy. He was a spoiled brat but lovable to the end.

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