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, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. We must all do more to help stop this western corporate arrogance that puts the future generations lives in despair. @BruceKGagnon

Saturday, December 30, 2006


We sold our house yesterday and today a dozen folks came and helped us load up a moving truck and after one hour the house was empty and we were on our way to a local storage facility. We can't close on our new place until Jan 9 so we will be staying with friends in the meantime.

We've only had one snow this winter so far, normally we have about 28 inches by this time, and before today we only had 2.8 inches. Just as we were unloading the truck at the storage facility it began to snow, a light but steady snow and we took it as a good sign. It's snowing harder now and everything is turning a beautiful white.

It was a joyful time to have our extended community come help us with the move and it made clear that our hope of living in an intentional community - a community that shares the work and joys of life will be a great experience for us.

So I am now sitting in a local cafe using the wireless connection as I won't have my own local Internet facilities for a few weeks.

Best wishes to all in the new year. Let's all keep doing what we can to keep the fires of peace burning. Gather yourselves and gather the wood.

Thursday, December 28, 2006


Mary Beth and I took public transit to Boston early on Christmas day and had dinner with her extended Irish-Catholic family. Her Uncle Bobby, who drives the rich around for a living, picked us up at the station in Boston and then took us back later that evening so we could make it back to Maine. A great way to travel. Saves gas, reduces pollution, you can have a couple glasses of wine and not worry about driving. I slept most of the way home.

The only problem is that we don't have enough public transit in America. We need to connect every corner of the nation with a rail system that is as good as any in the world. But who will invest in such a system? All the big corporations are moving overseas. They won't build it here.

So that leaves us the taxpayers. All that money we are now wasting in Iraq could be used to create a world-class public transit system. But the oil corporations, auto makers, and road builders won't support it. That means the public is going to have to start rattling our chains and demanding mass transit now!

Gas prices are climbing again now that the election is over. It won't be long before working people won't be able to afford to get to work. When gas hits $4, $5, $6 a gallon people are going to be screaming.

It all fits together if you think about it. We've got to reduce global warming. We've got to create industrial jobs in the U.S. Convert the military industrial complex and build a national rail system. Then we won't have to be doing "endless war" for oil.

Begin to connect these dots in your anti-war and environmental work. The more we link these issues the faster we get where we want to be.

Take a look at the website linked in the headline above.

Help create the momentum for public mass transit.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006


The Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space was created in 1992 to build an international movement to prevent the arms race from moving into space.

Each year we meet in a different part of the world. If you click on the link in the headline above you will see our new video called War from Space? This video is from our 2006 annual meeting in Vancouver, Canada which was held in conjunction with the World Peace Forum.

On March 22-24, 2007 we will meet in Darmstadt, Germany to celebrate our work together and continue our deliberate and determined effort to expand opposition to Star Wars. We should be posting the full agenda for the Germany space organizing conference on our web site soon.

Our friend Holly Gwinn Graham from Olympia, Washington, pictured above, is one of our new members of our board and is a singer/songwriter who has composed a number of great songs about space. This picture was taken last October as Holly entertained and taught folks during our annual Keep Space for Peace Week of local actions.

The Global Network now has about 150 affiliated organizations all over the world and we are working hard to reach out to new regions of the planet in hopes that a widening consciousness about preventing an arms race in space will help build the kind of international grassroots movement that will be necessary to keep the heavens free from the bad seed of war and greed.

We thank all of you who have helped us in the past and look forward to working with you again in 2007.

Peace to you and your families.

Sunday, December 24, 2006


by Michael Lerner

"Talk about hope or trust, and you find that people across the board - from Left to Right, from Islamic and Christian to Jewish and orthodox Marxist, orthodox psychoanalyst or orthodox anything - will unite in dismissing you as outside the realm of sophisticated thought and not worthy of serious attention.

The 'default' position of many people is despair. The pain and fear that these people feel at the possibility of allowing themselves to trust again is both understandable and healable but it won't be as long as we allow people to dismiss the possibility of a different kind of world as 'dangerous' or 'shallow' or 'adolescent'.

This is the dimension of who we are that can be called 'spiritual': our insistence that we are not stuck in a world based on fear.... Actualizing that potentiality can only happen when one takes a leap of faith beyond the cycles of past hurts and past betrayals. Otherwise, the past imprisons us forever."

Happy holidays to everyone. Thanks for reading my blog this year. Click on the link in the headline above for a nice end of year conversion piece.
Best wishes for a better 2007.
Bruce Gagnon

Friday, December 22, 2006


When NASA was preparing for the Apollo Moon landing, it took the astronauts to a Navajo reservation in Arizona for training.

One day, a Navajo elder and his son came across the space crew walking among the rocks. The elder, who spoke only Navajo, asked a question. His son translated for the NASA people: "What are these guys in the big suits doing?" One of the astronauts said that they were practicing for a trip to the moon. When his son relayed this comment,the Navajo elder got all excited and asked if it would be possible to give to the astronauts a message to deliver to the moon.

Recognizing a promotional opportunity when he saw one, a NASA official accompanying the astronauts said, "Why certainly!" and told an underling to get a tape recorder. The Navajo elder's comments into the microphone were brief. The NASA official asked the son if he would translate what his father had said. The son listened to the recording and laughed uproariously… but he refused to translate.

So the NASA people took the tape to a nearby Navajo village and played it for other members of the tribe. They too laughed long and hard, but also refused to translate the elder's message to the moon.

NASA had to take the tape back to Washington and made a Navajo working at the Bureau of Indian Affairs translate it. After he finally stopped laughing, the translator relayed the message:


Thursday, December 21, 2006


Yesterday the town of Brunswick held a public hearing of the Local Redevelopment Authority that will be deciding what is to be done with the Brunswick Naval Air Station (BNAS) when it closes on 2011.

One presentation proposed using the BNAS facility as a research, development and testing center for the Pentagon's Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) program.

UAV's are remotely piloted aircraft used in reconnaissance and intelligence-gathering roles and are now being deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan to fly over the battlespace and to send back "real time" pictures via satellite technology to ground operators who then can order the UAV's to fire rockets and machine guns mounted on board.

Many of the recent bombings and killings of innocent people in Iraq and Afghanistan have been done by UAV's.

In the Brunswick presentation it was suggested that the Pentagon is spending a lot of research and development dollars on UAV's and Maine should try to grab some of those funds. The proposal also made the case that creating such a facility would create spin-off commercial "defense" jobs that would service the UAV operation.

The presentation also said the UAV's would be useful to Homeland Security for "surveillance" of our region.

This is just one more glaring example how the economy of the U.S. is becoming militarized as 50% of every federal tax dollar is now going into weapons technology development.

Former Maine Speaker of the House John Richardson from Brunswick, just appointed by Gov. Baldacci to head the state's Department of Economic and Community Development, has previously advocated in the local newspaper that BNAS be used as a UAV test facility.

It would appear to me that the decision has been made to use BNAS for this purpose and now the public sales job is underway. Now would be the right time for people to speak out against this UAV test facility at BNAS.

Would it not be better that our tax dollars be used at BNAS to build mass transit rail systems, solar systems and windmills rather than more weapons for endless war? (Click the link in the headline above for a glimpse of what positive things could be done with our money.)

Hersch Sternlieb testified before this same public hearing today advocating that a world class garden be established at BNAS.

So just imagine a world class garden full of tourists and tulips with UAV's circling overhead practicing endless war and domestic surveillance.

Welcome to America.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006


George W. Bush today, as expected, called for "additional sacrifices" in Iraq. "We do not let up" he promised and said his administration would be "smarter" about how to deploy U.S. "resources" in Iraq. (Bush likes to use the word 'sacrifice' and everytime he does I think of his membership ritual at the Skull & Bones cult at Yale University where they crawl into coffins inside their dark clubhouse called the 'tomb'. You think these guys aren't wacky?)

The Washington Post reported today that administration sources were saying that up to 70,000 additional troops could be added to the military with tens of thousands of troops added to the force now in Iraq. Bush will also be requesting more than $100 billion for the occupation in 2007 - this coming after Congress has already appropriated $70 billion for 2007 war funding. The total expenditures for Iraq in 2007 will now be 50% more than originally projected.

You'd think the "opposition party" would be going bonkers about this announcement from Bush. Instead top Democrats are rushing to join side with King George. Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid said last weekend on TV news shows that he would support more troops in Iraq.

Even before news of Bush's latest plan, Rep. Ike Skelton (D-Mo.), incoming chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, told reporters that the military is "bleeding" and "we have to apply the tourniquet and strengthen the forces."

"I am glad he has realized the need for increasing the size of the armed forces . . . but this is where the Democrats have been for two years," said Rep. Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), the new House Democratic Caucus chairman.

National peace groups are asking people to call Congress this week to protest Bush's plan to escalate the Iraq occupation and the weak response from the Democratic party. Please call your Congressional delegation and call for (1) A no vote on the $100 billion supplemental expected to be approved in January (2) An immediate withdrawal from Iraq - not an escalation.

Also call the offices of Democratic party leaders Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi to express your outrage. The Capitol switchboard is (202) 224-3121.

Also please begin discussing in your local community participation in the February plans to occupy the local offices of Congress members in response to their slavish support for the madness in Iraq. As Bush and the Democrats link arms and escalate this war the peace movement must non-violently step up our protest activity at the local and national level.

Be sure to read the piece by Alexander Cockburn linked in the headline above.

Sunday, December 17, 2006


Mary Beth and I just got home today from a weekend retreat with some peace movement friends. We met up in Deer Isle and one of the things we did on Saturday was take a two-hour walk along the shore and out onto a local island that was accessible because the tide had gone out. In the picture above we are sitting on a rocky cliff overlooking the Penobscot Bay. It was quite windy and the sky was sunny and clear. A very beautiful day though a bit too warm for this time of year. Everyone in Maine is talking about global warming.

During our retreat, rotated between the homes of a couple artist friends who are part of our extended peace community family, we cooked for each other and talked about how we should deal with the fact that the Democrats are rushing to join the Bush team in giving another $100 billion plus for the war effort. We talked about the need to increase our efforts in Maine to call for impeachment of Bush/Cheney - they must be held accountable for the crimes they have committed. How can we have real democracy if we allow them to wantonly violate our sacred constitution and then get a free pass?

Our group of about 13 at the retreat, coming from all over the state, also decided that we should work together to hold non-violent civil disobedience actions in congressional offices sometime in February as part of the national Campaign of Resistance to End the Iraq War. (See the link in the headline above for more details.) We will be holding meetings around the state in the coming weeks to plan these events.

The integration of artists with traditional peace movement organizing has really been a wonderful combination here in Maine. For the past couple of years a growing group of artists have brought exceptional creativity to our overall effort and out of this connection has grown a wonderful bonding and building of community. We are really lucky to have made this connection.

Once we got home today Mary Beth went to pick up our dogs who were being taken care of by friends while we were gone for the weekend. Our friend had recently become hopeful that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) was going to be an emerging leader for our side. He told Mary Beth that over the weekend he had heard that Obama was calling for more troops to be sent to Iraq. Our friend was heart broken at the news.

One thing we talked about at the retreat this weekend was that we can't count on and wait for the Democrats to bail us out these days - from either the occupation in Iraq, global warming, or a host of other problems we now face.

We talked about how we need to act independently and to recognize that no politician will be our savior. The people are going to have to take back our democracy and save ourselves from the hot frying pan that we are now sliding into.

This weekend's retreat reminded me that we are not alone. One of our friends at the retreat sent this quote to us today after she got home. I think it tells the story.

"Hear me! A single twig breaks, but the bundle of twigs is strong."

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


At a time when the U.S. faces historic debt, NASA announced last week its intention to establish a permanent base on the Moon by 2024.

In an interview on December 4 from the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, Scott Horowitz, NASA’s associate administrator for exploration said, “We’re going for a base on the Moon.”

The NASA plan is portrayed as the next phase of the space agency’s exploration agenda after space shuttles are retired in 2010. NASA’s ambitious schedule includes a 2009 test of one of the lunar spaceships, a 2014 manned test flight of the new Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) without a Moon landing, and a 2020 flight with a four-astronaut crew that would land on the Moon for a short visit. NASA envisions people living on the Moon for six-month intervals beginning in 2024.

The most likely destination for the permanent base is the Moon's south pole because it's sunlit for three-quarters of the time and has possible resources to mine in areas nearby.

Just to ensure that Congress will support funding for the Moon program, NASA is spreading the operation out to 13 states: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Ohio, Texas, Utah, and Virginia. Pratt & Whitney in West Palm Beach, Florida is now working on the engines for a lunar lander. Bechtel is interested in building structures on the Moon for NASA.

Last year, NASA said it would cost $104 billion just to return to the Moon for a first visit, but has declined to give estimates for the total cost of a permanent base. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) reports that NASA’s procurement plan for the Moon lander risks delivering a product that is late, over budget, and short on capability. This is what happened in the case of the International Space Station (ISS) that was originally supposed to cost taxpayers $10 billion; the price has grown to $100 billion and the station is still not complete.

With space-related spending a low priority for most governments around the world, NASA hopes that by calling the Moon base an international post it will be able to recruit partners to help convince their publics and politicians to buy into the new exploration plan. By inviting some “allies” to share in the creation of the Moon base, the U.S. also hopes to absorb energies from countries like Japan that have announced plans of their own to establish Moon colonies.

The idea of a U.S. base on the Moon is nothing new. In a secret study called “A U.S. Army Study for the Establishment of a Lunar Outpost” published on June 9, 1959, the military maintained that, “The lunar outpost is required to develop and protect potential United States interests on the Moon; to develop techniques in Moon-based surveillance of the Earth and space; in communications relay, and in operations on the surface of the Moon; to serve as a base for exploration of the Moon…Any military operations on the Moon will be difficult to counter by the enemy because of the difficulty of his reaching the Moon, if our forces are already present and have means of countering a landing or of neutralizing any hostile forces that have landed.”

In 1999, John Young, former Gemini, Apollo, and space shuttle astronaut, said that the Moon would also be useful for “planetary defense.”

Recognizing that “control” of the Moon could cause enormous conflict over time, the United Nations created the Moon Treaty in 1979. Much of the Moon Treaty reiterates earlier and internationally-accepted “space law,” particularly the Outer Space Treaty of 1967. Article 11 of the treaty maintains, “The Moon and its natural resources are the common heritage of mankind.” The treaty also prohibits national appropriation, adding the words “by means of use or occupation, or by any other means.” In other words, no military bases and no claims of ownership are allowed. The U.S. never signed the Moon Treaty, and in fact it was only ratified by nine nations.

A 1989 study commissioned by Congress, called "Military Space Forces: The Next 50 Years" reports that whoever holds the Moon militarily will control the "earth-Moon gravity well" and thus will essentially control the front gate to the Moon.

Former Nazi Major General Walter Dornberger, who was in charge of the entireV-1 and V-2 missile operation for Hitler’s Germany, testified before the U.S. Congress in 1958 that America's top space priority ought to be to "conquer, occupy, keep, and utilize space between the Earth and the Moon." (Dornberger, along with 1,500 other top Nazi scientists, was smuggled into the U.S. under Operation Paperclip after WW II. He became Vice-President at Bell Aerospace in New York.)

The Moon has one resource that is getting everyone’s attention. It is helium-3, and, say many space enthusiasts, could be used for fusion power back here on Earth. In a 1995 New York Times op-ed, science writer Lawrence Joseph asks the question: “Will the Moon become the Persian Gulf of the 21st Century?” Joseph maintains that the most important technological question of our time will be “which nation will control nuclear fusion?” He ends his piece by saying, “If we ignore the potential of this remarkable fuel, the nation could slip behind the race for control of the global economy, and our destiny beyond.”

One person who is not ignoring helium-3 on the Moon is former astronaut and engineer Harrison Schmitt who has created a corporation to mine the Moon for it. Schmitt, though, is concerned about obstacles to his grand plans. In a 1998 piece for the industry newspaper Space News called “The Moon Treaty: Not a Wise Idea” he writes, “The strong prohibition on ownership of ‘natural resources’ also causes worry….The mandate of an international regime would complicate private commercial efforts…. The Moon Treaty is not needed to further the development and use of lunar resources for the benefit of humankind...including the extraction of lunar helium-3 for terrestrial fusion power.”

Some scientists predict that one metric ton of helium-3 could be worth over $3 billion. Researchers at the Princeton University Plasma Physics Laboratory have estimated that some one million tons of helium-3 could be obtained from the top layer of the Moon.

If all this turns out to be true and scientifically possible, imagine the gold rush to the Moon and the conflict that could follow in years to come. Who would police the Moon, especially when countries like the U.S. refuse to sign the Moon Treaty that restricts “ownership claims”?

The U.S. Space Command's plan, Vision for 2020, says, "Historically, military forces have evolved to protect national interests and investments — both military and economic. During the rise of sea commerce, nations built navies to protect and enhance their commercial interests....Likewise, space forces will emerge to protect military and commercial national interests and investment in the space medium due to their increasing importance."

I have always been convinced that, by creating offensive space weapons systems, one of the major jobs of the Space Command would be to control who can get on and off planet Earth, thus controlling the “shipping lanes” to the Moon and beyond.

There has long been a military connection to NASA’s Moon missions. In early 1994, NASA launched the Deep Space Program Science Experiment, the first of a series of Clementine technology demonstrations jointly sponsored with the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO). The Pentagon announced that data acquired by the spacecraft indicated that there is ice in the bottom of a crater on the Moon, located on the Moon’s south pole — the same venue NASA now envisions as the site for the 2024 permanent base. According to a Pentagon website, “The principal objective of the lunar observatory mission though was to space qualify lightweight sensors and component technologies for the next generation of Department of Defense spacecraft [Star Wars]. The mission used the Moon, a near-Earth asteroid, and the spacecraft’s Interstage Adapter (ISA) as targets to demonstrate sensor performance. As a secondary mission, Clementine returns valuable data of interest to the international civilian scientific sector.”

In the end, the NASA plan to establish permanent bases on the Moon will help the military “control and dominate” access on and off our planet Earth and determine who will extract valuable resources from the Moon in the years ahead.

The taxpayers will be asked to pay the enormously expensive “research and development” costs of this program that in the end will profit the aerospace industry and those corporation like Bechtel that intend to build the bases and extract resources on the Moon.

NASA is not really looking for the “origins of life,” as it tells school children today. Instead, it is laying the groundwork for a new gold rush that will drain our national treasury and enrich the big corporations that now control our government. It is beyond time for the American people to wake up to the shell game underway.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006


Click on cartoon to enlarge.

Saturday, December 09, 2006


"No American is above the law"

Rep. McKinney's floor statement on the impeachment of George W. Bush

By Cynthia McKinney

Published: Friday December 8th, 2006

Mr. Speaker: I come before this body today as a proud American and as a servant of the American people, sworn to uphold the Constitution of the United States.

Throughout my tenure, I’ve always tried to speak the truth. It’s that commitment that brings me here today.

We have a President who has misgoverned and a Congress that has refused to hold him accountable. It is a grave situation and I believe the stakes for our country are high.

No American is above the law, and if we allow a President to violate, at the most basic and fundamental level, the trust of the people and then continue to govern, without a process for holding him accountable —what does that say about our commitment to the truth? To the Constitution? To our democracy?

The trust of the American people has been broken. And a process must be undertaken to repair this trust. This process must begin with honesty and accountability.

Leading up to our invasion of Iraq, the American people supported this Administration’s actions because they believed in our President. They believed he was acting in good faith. They believed that American laws and American values would be respected. That in the weightiness of everything being considered, two values were rock solid —trust and truth.

From mushroom clouds to African yellow cake to aluminum tubes, the American people and this Congress were not presented the facts, but rather were presented a string of untruths, to justify the invasion of Iraq.

President Bush, along with Vice President Cheney and then-National Security Advisor Rice, portrayed to the Congress and to the American people that Iraq represented an imminent threat, culminating with President Bush’s claim that Iraq was six months away from developing a nuclear weapon. Having used false fear to buy consent—the President then took our country to war.

This has grave consequences for the health of our democracy, for our standing with our allies, and most of all, for the lives of our men and women in the military and their families—who have been asked to make sacrifices—including the ultimate sacrifice—to keep us safe.

Just as we expect our leaders to be truthful, we expect them to abide by the law and respect our courts and judges. Here again, the President failed the American people.

When President Bush signed an executive order authorizing unlawful spying on American citizens, he circumvented the courts, the law, and he violated the separation of powers provided by the Constitution. Once the program was revealed, he then tried to hide the scope of his offense from the American people by making contradictory, untrue statements.

President George W. Bush has failed to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States; he has failed to ensure that senior members of his administration do the same; and he has betrayed the trust of the American people.

With a heavy heart and in the deepest spirit of patriotism, I exercise my duty and responsibility to speak truthfully about what is before us. To shy away from this responsibility would be easier. But I have not been one to travel the easy road. I believe in this country, and in the power of our democracy. I feel the steely conviction of one who will not let the country I love descend into shame; for the fabric of our democracy is at stake.

Some will call this a partisan vendetta, others will say this is an unimportant distraction to the plans of the incoming Congress. But this is not about political gamesmanship.

I am not willing to put any political party before my principles.This, instead, is about beginning the long road back to regaining the high standards of truth and democracy upon which our great country was founded.

Mr. Speaker: Under the standards set by the United States Constitution, President Bush—along with Vice President Cheney, and Secretary of State Rice— should be subject to the process of impeachment, and I have filed H. Res. _ in the House of Representatives.

To my fellow Americans, as I leave this Congress, it is in your hands— to hold your representatives accountable, and to show those with the courage to stand for what is right, that they do not stand alone.

Thank you.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


The Iraq Study Group (sounds like a bible study class or something - which might be a good name because you have to have alot of "faith" to believe in their conclusions) today released their recommendations to the nation on how Bush should proceed on Iraq.

Commenting on the report, William Hartung at the World Policy Institute said, “Despite some early headlines suggesting that the Iraq Study Group would be calling for a withdrawal of U.S. combat forces from Iraq by the beginning of 2008, a look at the fine print suggests otherwise. The group's recommendations look more like an exercise in ‘bait and switch’ than an actual commitment to U.S. withdrawal.”

“By offering the prospect of some change - even if it leaves tens of thousands of combat troops and trainers in Iraq in 2008 and beyond - the Baker-Hamilton report could take pressure off Republicans and Democrats alike. Major figures in both parties could be relieved of the demand to push for a genuine withdrawal prior to the 2008 presidential elections. Citizens who want a quicker timeline for U.S. withdrawal and a genuine military disengagement from Iraq will need to make their voices heard if U.S. policy is to go beyond the half-measures set out by the Baker-Hamilton panel.”

The Democrats in Congress held a secret meeting yesterday in Washington to figure out their position on Iraq. Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Speaker-designate and a frequent critic of George W. Bush, announced the forum to flush out fresh ideas. Afterward, she said: "What we heard today is that there are no easy answers in Iraq."

Watching Robert Gates, nominated to replace Rumsfeld as Secretary of War, on TV yesterday while in Congressional hearings was no encouragement either. Then today I read reports on his testimony and a couple things stuck out like a sore thumb. Gates said his “greatest worry” about Iraq is that if U.S. forces leave the country “in chaos,” a variety of regional powers will become involved, “and we will have a regional conflict on our hands.” Gates said he wants to “forge that kind of bipartisan approach going forward” so that those who want to harm the U.S. “know we’re in it for the long haul.”

It’s the Vietnam-era domino theory making a comeback. Gates is invoking the fear that if the U.S. leaves, the region will be taken over by terrorists and other bad guys like Syria and Iran. So we are now seeing the justification shifting to a new excuse for keeping the occupation alive.

Then this morning I read a piece from Newsweek that interviewed the soon-to-be chairman of the House Intelligence Committee – Rep. Silvestre Reyes (D-TX) who was just appointed by Nancy Pelosi to head that post. Rep. Reyes, like so many other Democrats, says he is against the war. Reyes says now though, “We could not allow Iraq to become a safe haven for Al Qaeda, for Hamas, for Hizbullah, or anybody else. We cannot allow Iran or Syria to have a free hand in there to further destabilize the Middle East.”

Reyes continues, “We’re all interested in getting out of Iraq. That’s the common goal. How we do it, I think, is the tough part. There are those that say, they don’t care what Iraq looks like once we leave there. Let’s just leave there. And I argue against that. I don’t think that’s responsible. And I think it plays right into the hands of Syria and Iran.”

Do you notice the similarity between the words from Gates and Reyes? The administration’s talking points are making the rounds and are being picked up by the Democrats as well as the Republicans. Who said the Democrats are the opposition party?

Rep. Reyes is also calling for more troops in Iraq, from 20,000 – 30,000, so the U.S. can “dismantle the militias.” Isn’t it interesting that Nancy Pelosi appoints a guy to head the Intelligence Committee that wants more troops in Iraq and wants to expand the fighting? Do you think she didn’t know his thinking on Iraq?

Ray McGovern, a former CIA analyst who is active in the anti-war movement said this in response to Rep. Reyes, “I think he needs a course in Insurgency 101. Have they learned nothing from Vietnam? If he pushes this and gets some support for it, and with McCain in the Senate, it could become more respectable…I think Reyes has got a lot to learn.”

I was at a meeting last night and learned that a friend's son, who was in Iraq for a year with the Army, is being called back to active duty. Their son had been discharged over a year ago and has been attending the University of Maine. He is now being made to go back into the Army and will probably be sent back to Iraq. That is a draft. His parents, who severely suffered during his whole time in Iraq, are devastated at the thought.

Don’t think for a moment that this occupation is going to end anytime soon. The U.S. government is now playing with our heads and setting in motion the shell-game to keep this thing going for a long, long time.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


The Global Network will hold its 15th annual international membership meeting and conference in Darmstadt, Germany, on March 23-24, 2007. The theme of the conference will be: The Role of the European Union in the Militarization of Space.

Darmstadt, located close to Frankfurt am Main, hosts two major European and one US space facilities: the European Space Operation Centre (ESOC), which plans and conducts satellite operations for the European Space Agency; the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT), which delivers weather and climate-related satellite data and images; and on the outskirts of the town a US spy station, which is part of the global Echelon surveillance system.

Two days of discussion, strategizing, planning, and protest will inform us all about the increasing role of space in the European Security and Defense Policy, about NATO and European missile defense plans, how these are related to US plans to dominate space in order to control the Earth, and what we can do about it.

To inquire about registration, contact For more information, see or send mail to

Sunday, December 03, 2006


Click on the cartoon to enlarge it so you can read it. You gotta laugh or you go nuts these days.

In the end one key reason I think they infiltrate groups is in order to create fear in the mind's of the public. The hidden message is - "Hey you don't want to associate with these people! If you do you will get on a list and like in the old Soviet Union you will find it harder to get a job if you have been identified as a dissident! So keep your nose clean. Don't rock the boat. You can't beat city hall anyway."

This way the power structure can help to limit the growth of the opposition movements. They obviously also expose themselves as the public ultimately learns that the government does not believe in true democracy.

Friday, December 01, 2006


  • This picture above comes from last weekend's protest at the School of the Americas in Columbus, Georgia (Ft Benning). The little spy house, raised up in the air, so the cops can watch the protest is a reminder what the power structure thinks of us these days. It's likely paid for by Homeland Security funds that have flowed to local police agencies in recent years.

  • This month's installment of Liberty News can be viewed by clicking on the link in the headline above. The show, produced by a friend of mine in his basement in nearby Portland, features a great bit on the "holy war" now underway right here in the U.S. as Christians are being trained at Jesus camp to fight against non-believers inside the U.S. and around the world. (If the show stops and starts now and then don't worry - just be patient and it will get going again.)

  • It is being reported that Bush's Iraq Study Group will call for U.S. troops to be brought home by 2008 which essentially means that there will be no change in policy during the remainder of time King George II is in office. No surprise here. The Democrats will fall right in line behind the recommendation. Expect more killing, more dying, more wasted $$$$$. And more big corporate profits. Two telling comments by so-called "liberal" politicians are below:

"I think that the Baker report is . . . going to change the debate in this country," Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) told CNN.

Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.), speaking on MSNBC's "Hardball," said that "I suspect there may be a growing bipartisan support in this country for what Jim Baker, Lee Hamilton, the other members of that commission have put together."

Translation - the peace movement is left high and dry by the Dems. Back to work folks. We will be meeting in Maine on January 6 in Portland to decide on our next organizing steps in the state around the Iraq occupation and funding issues. Plans are underway nationwide for congressional office occupations in early February. How badly do you want to see this occupation ended?

  • My son Julian came home for 5 days during Thanksgiving. He is finishing up college in Texas and I had not seen him in quite awhile. It was wonderful to have him home. Mary Beth and I took him kayaking one day and cooked lobster for him one evening. We took him to Boston on the last day and stopped at the Fogg Art museum at Harvard and saw a great display called Dissent!

  • If you have not noticed, I asked Dave Webb (the Global Network's great web master and board convenor) to put a link to my cable TV show called This Issue on the blog so folks can watch it. So just below click on the TV graphic and see my interview with independent journalist Dahr Jamail. We'll put other shows on there as well in the future.