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

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.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

PRAYERS FOR A DEAR FRIEND

We just learned this morning that our dear friend Dennis Apel has had a heart attack and is in critical care at a hospital in Santa Maria, California.

Dennis and his wife Tensie have for a long time run a Catholic Worker house in the farm worker town of Santa Maria, very near Vandenberg AFB where Star Wars systems are regularly launched.

Dennis has been arrested many times for his acts of non-violent civil disobedience at the base and spent many nights in jail. You might notice the black cloth covering the base name on the stone wall in the background. Since Dennis poured his blood on the wall, just after the U.S. "shock and awe" attack on Iraq in 2003, the base now covers up their name each time a protest is held.

Just months ago Dennis invited me, along with John Dear, to come to California to speak in Santa Barbara at the annual gathering of west coast Catholic Worker activists. And then just a couple days ago I got an email from him saying he was going to organize a protest at Vandenberg during Keep Space for Peace Week.

Dennis and Tensie have created a health clinic in Santa Maria so that immigrant farm workers can get medical attention. They have fully embraced the teachings of the non-violent Jesus - take care of the poor and confront the war makers in a spirit of love.

I am hoping that Dennis will fully recover. I ask you to please include him in your thoughts or prayers. Dennis is a good man - a good husband, father, friend, and activist. He deserves to live. A nicer guy does not exist.

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