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: Brunswick, Maine, United States

I'm back to work for the Global Network. Will continue to help Lisa Savage for US Senate campaign on my free time. Trying to self-isolate as much as possible. Best wishes and good luck to you all.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

NATO NOW ON PEACE MOVEMENT AGENDA


  • The Chicago NATO "summit" turned out to be a public relations event for all sides.  Obama did get NATO's 28 member countries to "approve" the Europe-wide missile defense (MD) program.  He announced that in addition to Poland and Romania taking ground-based interceptors, Turkey hosting a MD radar system, the Netherlands has now signed on for an MD radar upgrade and Spain will host Navy Aegis warships with MD interceptors on-board.  More deployments are to follow on in coming years.  Hillary Clinton came out of Chicago saying that future NATO meetings must be about further expansion of the aggressive military alliance and she named Georgia, right on Russia's southern border, as the next candidate for NATO membership.  That's going to make Russia very angry.
  • But Obama hoped to come out of the summit with an agreement with Pakistan to allow contested Afghanistan war supply routes to be opened up again for NATO use but this did not happen during the Chicago events.
  •  NATO has reached a deal with the military contractor Northrop Grumman for a $1.7 billion fleet of new drones. NATO’s "Allied Ground Surveillance" system will use the drones and their accompanying command stations at sites around the world. NATO says it will spend additional billions on the system’s operation.
  • I'd say the biggest disaster of the NATO summit was the week of protests, conferences, meetings, and concerts throughout the city of Chicago by progressive groups.  NATO has not been an issue for most progressives, even for many in the peace movement.  But that is now changed.  With NATO's cancerous appetite for inserting itself in global conflicts people are starting to turn their attention to the "alliance" which I maintain has become the military arm of corporate globalization.  Thanks to this summit being held in the U.S., and particularly in Obama's home town, the NATO war crown now sits squarely on the head of the president.  A bad public relations move on his part in an election year.  
  • While the mainstream media coverage was pitiful as usual it was the alternative media that did an exceptional job of carrying the message of NATO's expanding military mission out to larger numbers of people around the world.  
  • Libya, which has the largest oil supply on the African continent, was "liberated" by NATO on behalf of the oil industry.  NATO is expanding into the Asia-Pacific as part of Obama's "pivot" and will now "partner" with Mongolia, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and other countries in the region to militarily surround and contain China.
  • I head to Toronto this afternoon for two days where I will speak at an event called Securing the peaceful use of space for future generations being organized by Project Ploughshares in Waterloo.  Canadian Pugwash and Science for Peace are co-sponsoring groups and I will talk about "missile defense" and try to put the program into the wider context of U.S. and NATO plans to control Russia and China.

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