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

Thursday, September 13, 2007


The Navy's Blue Angels just flew very low and loudly over our neighborhood in Bath. We are told they are doing practice runs but in fact they are really promoting the coming air show. They are trying to stir the community to come see the show.

My first thought was of the many innocent people in Iraq who have grown to fear those sounds daily since the U.S. "shock and awe" invasion of Iraq. To them they are not the sounds of "freedom" but are instead the horrifying sounds of bombs falling and more deaths in their already chaotic neighborhoods.

The coming Veterans for Peace demonstration in Brunswick this Saturday has already begun to create debate in the community as letters to the editor and op-eds have been flying back and forth for weeks in the local Times Record. Karen Wainberg told us just minutes ago about a man she was speaking with on the phone who reported that while at a meeting in his office today the planes had flown overhead and there was a positive reaction by one person but he did not seem to share the joy of the "Angels."

I went for a haircut today from my dear friend Maria Holt in Bath who has been fighting cancer for the past year or so and is fighting depression. She won't be able to come to the demonstration on Saturday but asked me to take a painting of a real angel, dressed in blue, to the event on her behalf. She said the painting that she did was copied from a famous painting. The coming demonstration is already stirring hearts.

One woman called today to find out how much the Blue Angels air show will cost the taxpayers. She was concerned about the waste of national resources. Her heart was stirring.

It is my hope that people who want to end this military madness will have the courage to come and march with Veterans for Peace on Saturday. We will gather on the Brunswick Mall, near the gazebo, and begin the march at 9:00 am. At noon we will hold a rally at the front gate of the Brunswick Naval Air Station and hear from two women whose hearts are daily in pain as their sons now serve in Iraq. We will hear from the incomparable Betty Burkes who has served as the national president of Women's International League for Peace & Freedom. We will hear Maine VfP member Dud Hendrick talk about the U.S. military empire and from Vietnam veteran and poet Doug Rawlings. They will all stir our hearts.

While on my recent trip to England, Wales, and Scotland each of my talks ended with someone in the audience asking me the same questions. "What are people in the U.S. doing to end the occupation of Iraq? Are you people going to invade Iran as well?"

It is true that the whole world is watching us. They are wondering when the American people will begin stirring and move to stop the insanity of endless war.

The protest in Brunswick on September 15 would be a good opportunity for us to show that we do care. It would be a good chance for us to show that our hearts are stirred by the enormous suffering of the people in Iraq.

What a safe place we live in. We can march to the Navy base gates while the "Gods of Metal" fly overhead. We are lucky that they won't drop bombs on us. Others in the world are not so lucky.

Real angels don't drop bombs!


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