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

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Sunday Song

Meeting with Okinawan Mayors

Nago City, Okinawa Mayor Susumu Inamine, joined by mayors from three other island communities, shared his deep opposition to US base expansion with peace group leaders yesterday in Washington.

Mayor Inamine told those assembled for the late afternoon meeting, "We are walking on the edge of life" as they witness growing destruction of their beautiful island home.  The US is forcing the Japanese government to build a new Marine base called Henoko in Nago City.  The airfield for the new base would extend out into Oura Bay where coral and endangered sea mammals are being threatened.  Already large concrete blocks have been dropped into the bay at 75 sites (for runway construction) and as a result 94 colonies of coral have been destroyed.

The US response to the 80% of Okinawans who oppose the US military presence is to say that it is just a "domestic dispute" between the Japanese government and Okinawa.  Mayor Inamine told us that, "Okinawa is still a colony of the US and Japan."  Okinawan political leaders have repeatedly contacted President Obama but have received no reply.  The current US Ambassador to Japan, the person selling this US military expansion project, is Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of JFK.  This illustrates to me how 'liberal' Democrats are complicit in promoting the US military empire.

After the heartbreaking presentations by the Okinawan mayors they asked the various leaders from peace groups who were present to speak.  Folks representing Veterans for Peace, Popular Resistance, CodePink, Peace Action, and the Global Network spoke.  Also there was Maine filmmaker Regis Tremblay whose documentary the Ghosts of Jeju tells a similar story about people's resistance in Gangjeong village on Jeju Island, South Korea where a UNESCO recognized nature preserve is being destroyed to build a Naval base for US warships.

When it was my turn to say a few words I talked about as a young boy often paging through albums of photos taken by my step-father who was stationed on Okinawa and in Korea during the Korean War.  He worked in photo reconnaissance so had many photos from the period.  At that young age I was introduced to these two cultures and the US military occupation of their lands.  At the time I thought nothing about the occupation but was fascinated with the people and their war-torn lands.

Obama's 'pivot' of additional US military forces into the Asia-Pacific necessitates more barracks for troops, more airfields for war planes and more ports-of-call for warships.  Thus what is happening to Okinawa is similarly happening across the region as the Pentagon aims its war machine at China.

I shared that at the end of July the Global Network will hold our 23rd annual space organizing conference in Kyoto, Japan to stand with nearby villagers who are protesting the recent stationing of a US 'missile defense' (MD) radar in their community.  The Pentagon has also deployed MD interceptors at several bases on Okinawa.  I told the mayors that prior to our meeting in Kyoto that the Global Network will have a delegation of our members travel to Okinawa on a solidarity visit.

I ended my words by saying that the US government and many of our citizens are suffering from a spiritual sickness that puts $$$ and power first.  I said that spiritual healing would only come from a renewed connection to nature and thanked them for their determined efforts to lead that transformative healing.

Photos by Ellen Davidson

Saturday, May 30, 2015

We Want France Out of NATO

Polls show that the French are even more opposed to being in NATO today than they were in 2009, but mainstream politicians like Socialist President Francois Hollande show no inclination to re-evaluate France’s membership. It’s yet another issue where Hollande is perceived as failing to protect France’s national interests.

Resisting US Bases & Military Empire

  • I am at the airport in Portland, Maine waiting for my flight to DC.  This evening several of us from Veterans for Peace (VFP) will meet with one of the mayors from Okinawa to discuss their growing opposition to US base expansion plans.  Then on Sunday afternoon we'll meet with the new governor of Okinawa, Takashi Onaga, and we will present him with the VFP letter of solidarity and opposition to US bases on their island. Following that there will be a large dinner where we will further socialize with one another.

  • The Okinawa Perfectural Government has reportedly requested that Onaga would have talks with bureau chief-level U.S. foreign affairs and defense officials while in Washington. Okinawa is setting up a permanent lobby office in Washington in order to continue to represent the voice of their people inside the capital of the US military empire.

  • It is very exciting to see the growing non-violent resistance to US military bases happening all over the world.  In Okinawa, Japan, South Korea, Guam, Italy, Sicily, Philippines, Australia, Bahrain, and many other places people have had enough of the military toxic legacy, noise, war making, and bad behavior from American GI's.  There can be no doubt that the US empire is in a period of declining influence.  People around the world understand that the Pentagon is not in their country to bring real security - it is a forward-deployed resource extraction service operating on behalf of corporate capitalism.  It's exciting to be part of that global movement in motion.

  • The American people have a vital role to play in all of this.  In order for the Pentagon's program of "Full Spectrum Dominance" to be successful the military must first have unlimited access to the federal budget.  That means that all social spending must be severely reduced or completely eliminated in order to transfer those taxpayer dollars to the military industrial complex.  It is thus imperative that people campaigning to save social spending in the US actively point to the cancerous US military budget as the 'pot of gold' that must be cut in order for social progress to survive across our nation.
  • PressTV interviewed me the other day about US attempts to militarily control China as Obama's 'pivot' of 60% of US forces into the Asia-Pacific dramatically escalates tensions in that region.  You can listen to the interview here

You Could Be Putin-ized

Freedom of expression and democratic debate is considered by many as noble causes – even as rights. However, public discourse in the West – particularly the US – is neither free nor democratic when it comes to Russia. Why is this the case and is it dangerous? CrossTalking with James Carden and James Carafano.

Friday, May 29, 2015

All of Donbass is Family to Us

Delivering aid to eastern Ukraine which has had the hell kicked out of them for the past year by the US-NATO backed Kiev junta....

By Yevdokiya Sheremetyeva (littlehirosima)

Translated from Russian by J.Hawk

I caught myself thinking that I'm not reporting about even half of those whom we are helping. These days we're mainly doing targeted aid. Earlier we were done in only a few days--we delivered most of the food to communal cafeterias and bomb shelters of Pervomaysk. Now, in addition to the old system which is still in place, we are painstakingly assembling lists of the most needy from the village heads--people without shelter, family, children, the orphaned, the injured, etc. And then we deliver aid to them directly.

The geography of aid keeps growing. Georgiyevka, Khryashchevatoye, Vishnyevyy Dol, Chernukhino, Pervomaysk, Stakhanov, Fabrichnoye, Metallist, Krasnyy Luch, Lugansk...These days even a week is not enough. Every day we travel with huge packages, which we have to put together ourselves, house to house, village to village. Forgive me that I don't report on all of them--it's very difficult. I alone am responsible for the accounting and the reports on our trips, and I won't entrust this work to anyone else.

I would like to say that everyone who is under our care is receiving aid regularly. We're not merely acquaintances anymore.
--Dunya, did you get a haircut?
--How was your trip this time?
And all of Donbass is family to us
So here's Galina Vasilyevna. Always greets us with an avalanche of kisses. It was already dark when we arrived.

We delivered two packages to our Olya, the girl from Pervomaysk bomb shelter who gave us her poems which we published. Olya seemed like a little kid during winter, but now I realize she'll soon outgrow me.

What's all this?

As usual, we dropped by Lyubov Mikhailovna, a heroic woman who lost a leg and an arm during a summer bombardment while cleaning the local farm of the dead chickens. She wasn't employed there, she was just helping out the city, that hero-woman. I can't repeat that enough.
Thanks to you, we have been able to collect money for a special wheelchair for the one-armed.

We dropped by the Kozlovs in Khreshchevatoye. Nikolay Ivanovich lost an arm during the summer. We brought him food and medicine which he was asking for the last time. Thanks to Lena Zhukova who found and bought everything that was needed. 

I already wrote about our Kutsenko, but I have to write again.
We've visited him several times at the hospital during our last trip.
He's been discharged. Now we are taking care of paperwork to have him admitted to a retirement home for Great Patriotic War veterans. Many thanks to Zhenya and Lena who took up that cause.

There are many others about whom I haven't written but whom we are assisting. The bedridden ill of Khryashchevatoye, Fabrichnoye, and Metallist. The single moms of Lugansk, Metallist, and other places.

We are delivering all manner of goods to the orphanages in Lugansk, Krasnyy Luch, the social protection fund, and other services.

I'll write about them soon! Dunya, the multi-armed shiva, will do it all! ;)
And, of course, many thanks to everyone who is helping us. I hope that when you read these reports, you realize that you have made it possible. ;)
(and why is it that livejournal doesn't use smilies?)

And, as always-- If you want contribute to humanitarian aid, contact me through my livejournal account, through Facebook, or via email: Everything will be delivered and reported.

The Cost of Endless War

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Peace is the Imperative

Ron Dellums is one of my all-time favorite political leaders.  After I joined the Air Force in 1971 I was sent to Travis AFB in California after my training was complete.  There was a race riot on the base as black troops grew weary of the institutional racism inside the military.  Then Congressman Dellums held hearings on our base to help support the black GI's and I closely followed his career after that.

He was a long-time critic of the Pentagon budget while in the House of Representatives.

The Corporate-Government Alliance Illusion

A debate emerges between noted journalists Bob Scheer and Chris Hedges on whether the state can reform its own surveillance practices and whether it can be held accountable by appealing to constitutional principles.

Divide and Rule

  • Tonight was the Maine Veterans for Peace (VFP) monthly meeting in Portland.  Regis Tremblay, Peter Woodruff and I were making the 45-minute trip to the meeting but half way there the traffic came to a dead stop.  Some emergency vehicles worked their way through the miles of two-lane jumble on I-295.  We sat still for about an hour and crawled a bit now and then.  After 90-minutes of waiting the traffic opened up but we turned around and came back home.  By the time we would have reached Portland the meeting would have been more than half over.

In 2013, U.S. Navy researchers predicted ice-free summer Arctic waters by 2016 and it looks as if that prediction might come true. Recently, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reported that there was less ice in the Arctic this winter than in any other winter of the satellite era. Given that the Navy has been making plans for "ice-free" operations in the Arctic since at least 2001, their June "Northern Edge" exercises may well prove to be just the opening salvo in the future northern climate wars, with whales, seals, and salmon being the first in the line of fire.
  • The Polish presidential election in recent days was quite interesting.  The expected winner Bronislaw Komorowski views Russia as a threat to European integration and he was the US-EU favorite.  The actual winner Andrzej Duda has been speaking out against Ukraine's growing Nazi problem (during WW II Ukrainian Nazi's joined with Hitler to kill alot of Polish people) and he refused to meet this week with the Kiev regime's President Poroshenko who had to cancel his trip to Poland as a result.  Poland was split damn near in half east-to-west between the two candidates so like Ukraine is today, the Poles are now also a divided people.  
  • This division game seems to be happening just about everywhere these days.  The strategy of divide and conquer appears to be alive and well.  The puppet masters are indeed busy.
  • When I heard yesterday on the radio that Obama's Justice Department was going after FIFA, the world football (soccer) organization, my very first thought was 'Russia'.  I had just read days before that Russia was going to host the World Cup in 2018.  Then this morning I saw Putin in an interview charging the US with messing with things (as usual) that it should not be messing with.  I'd never seen Putin so angry before.  FIFA is to have elections for its top leadership tomorrow. The US is pushing Prince Ali bin Hussein of Jordan - the son of King Hussein.  Likely a reward to the King for allowing the CIA and Saudi Arabia to train ISIS in Jordan.  There is no place and no organization that is safe from the meddling bloody hands of the USA.  Everything has been turned into a political tool for global corporate domination.Watch for the US to now lead the effort to get the World Cup withdrawn from Russia.  
  • This weekend I will fly to DC to join a Veterans for Peace delegation that will meet with the Governor of Okinawa who is bringing a large group of mayors and other leaders from that island to Washington in order to lobby against the presence of US military bases.  Okinawa (the photo above is from there) is loaded with US bases and the people are in revolt.  Recent elections put in a new governor and several mayors who promised to try to close the bases.  VFP was invited to bring a letter of solidarity to give the governor and I was asked to draft it.  It's gone through several rewrites but the letter is done and the weekend should be real interesting.

NATO Dramatically Outspends Russia on Military

Apparently that image of Russia as an aggressor within Europe has gotten to some. The so-called Arctic challenge exercises have been dubbed one of Europe's largest fighter jet exercises. Up 4000 personnel from nine states - including the UK, the US, France and Germany are participating. This is the latest in a string of NATO led drills across Europe in recent months. To discuss this lets bring in Tony Robinson from the Pressenza News Agency

100 Bows on Jeju Island

Each morning activists do 100 bows at the front gate of the Navy base currently being built in Gangjeong village on Jeju Island, South Korea.  The base will port US Navy warships including aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines, and Aegis destroyers which will be used in Obama's 'pivot' of Pentagon forces aimed at China. 

As they do each bow these words are read on a loud speaker.

1. While holding in my heart that truth gives freedom to life I make my first bow.

2. Believing that the first step in solving a problem is self reflection I make my second bow.

3. Looking back at my foolishness of living without knowing the root meaning of life I make my third bow.

4. Recalling how I have been unable to live my life seeking truth based on facts I make my fourth bow.

5. Being struck by the crisis of life, the crisis of peace in today's culture I make my fifth bow.

6. Holding in my heart the fact that anti-life and anti-human contradictions and dangers have their origin in my own dualistic world view I make my sixth bow.

7. As I hold in my heart that possessions create other possessions and wars only give birth to other wars and cannot solve problems I make my seventh bow.

8. As I hold in my heart that it is illusory to think that riches and first place bring happiness I make my eighth bow.

9. As I hold in my heart my embarrassment over my ignorance for not knowing what is my role in the world I make my ninth bow.

10. As I hold in my heart that the way to life-peace is a life of relationship where I and thou have existence dependent on each other I make my tenth bow.

11. As I hold in my heart that the way to life-peace is to know and cultivate oneself from the viewpoint of life I make my eleventh bow.

12. As I hold in my heart that the way to life-peace is to accept the world's pain as my own pain I make my twelfth bow.

13. As I hold in my heart the truth that true love of self is to love my neighbor as myself I make my thirteenth bow.

14. As I hold in my heart that the way to life-peace is reflection responsive to the realities of my life I make my fourteenth bow.

15. As I hold in my heart the words that show the way for a life of truth to be understood and put into practice by anyone I make my fifteenth bow.

16. As I hold in my heart that the way to life-peace is a penetrating vision of the truth of existence and the truth of life, just as they are, I make my sixteenth bow.

17. As I hold in my heart that the way to life-peace is listening intently to the sound of oneself and the sound of the world I make my seventeenth bow.

18. As I hold in my heart that the way to lead the reform of the world is to reform one's own life I make my eighteenth bow.

19. Recalling the times my life on the inside and on the outside was not able to be straightforward I make my nineteenth bow.

20. As I hold in my heart that life-peace is of value greater than anything else in the world I make my twentieth bow.

21. In order to set up my life not strapped by language but have existence regulate language I make my twenty-first bow.

22. In order to set up a sense of values and a way of life that is not a slave of money I make my twenty-second bow.

23. In order to strengthen my philosophy and beliefs of a life free from a sense of relative deprivation I make my twenty-third bow.

24. In order to strengthen a life that overcomes the artificial order made by human greed and respect the order of the natural cosmos I make my twenty-fourth bow.

25. As I savor the first paragraph of the book of life-peace that thoroughly describes a geological world view based on the facts of life I make my twenty-first bow.

26. As I hold in my heart the truth of the cosmos's life that one thing's existence is a condition for another thing's existence I make my twenty-sixth bow.

27. As I hold in my heart the truth of the cosmos's life that the non-existence of another thing is the condition for the non-existence of this thing I make my twenty-seventh bow.

28. As I hold in my heart the eternal truth of order in the universe, inter-dependency, support, creation and obliteration, I make my twenty-eighth bow.

29. As I reflect on the fact that existing life is intertwined like a net I make my twenty-ninth bow.

30. As I savor the second paragraph of the book of life-peace that thoroughly describes how life in the universe is in fact originally a community of one body, one life I make my thirtieth bow.

31. As I hold in my heart that all life depends on nature and exists as a living community I make my thirty-first bow.

32. As I hold in my heart that our country depends on its neighboring countries and lives as a community of nations I make my thirty-second bow.

33. As I hold in my heart that our religion depends on neighboring religions and acts as a community of religions I make my thirty-third bow.

34. As I hold in my heart that our village depends on neighboring villages and lives as a community of villages I make my thirty-fourth bow.

35. As I hold in my heart that our family depends on neighboring families and lives as a community of families I make my thirty-fifth bow.

36. As I hold in my heart that I depend the other and I live as a community of life I make my thirty sixth bow.

37. As I hold in my heart that all beings depend on each other, support each other, and live as an eternal community of existence I make my thirty-seventh bow.

38. As I hold in my heart that community life becomes blessed only when it walks in the truth of mutual dependence and help I make my thirty-eighth bow.

39. As I savour the third paragraph of the book of life-peace repenting a life lived selfishly I make my thirty-ninth bow.

40. As I repent a selfish human-centered life that treats nature, the root of life recklessly, I make my fortieth bow.

41. As I repent my selfish life centered on my own country, overlooking the importance of our neighboring country, which our country depends on, I make my forty-first bow.

42. As I repent my closed way of life centered on my own religion, disobeying the will of the originator and not recognizing the dignity of neighboring religions I make my forty-second bow.

43. As I repent my selfish way of life centered on my family and failing to give thanks to neighboring families on whom we depend I make my forty-third bow.

44. As I repent my selfish way of life centered on myself, treating lightly the dignity of the other, who is the parent of my life, I make my forty-fourth bow.

45. As I repent my life selfishly and wrongly centered on my own groups, my country, my religion, my family, I make my forty-fifth bow.

46. As I repent my life of wrong self-love, with its logic of power and possession, of competition and dominance, I make my forty-sixth bow.

47. As I savour the fourth paragraph of the book of life-peace on how to serve and honor all life I make my forty-seventh bow.

48. As I resolve to live by the truth that human life and security and happiness comes from first honoring nature as the God of my life I make my forty-eighth bow.

49. As I resolve to live by the truth that my country's security and peacefulness comes from honoring my neighboring country as God of my own country I make my forty-ninth bow.

50. As I resolve to live by the truth that my religion's true light comes from honoring my neighboring religion as God of my religion I make my fiftieth bow.

51. As I resolved to treat my neighbor as one of God’s family and I realize this will guide my family in a secure, happy and truthful way, I make my fifty first bow.

52. As I resolve to live by the truth that my security and peacefulness comes when I treat others as the living God, I make my fifty second bow.

53. As I deeply comprehend reality and lead a life of contentment, which is the fifth article of the Life and Peace Scripture, I make my fifty third bow.

54. As I resolve to discard the human egoistic greed to exploit nature, I make my fifty fourth bow.

55. As I resolve to let go of chauvinistic nationalism which makes other countries insecure, I make my fifty fifth bow.

56. As I resolve to let go of the superiority of my religion which makes other faiths insecure, I make my fifty sixth bow.

57. As I resolve to abandon family-centered ideas which make other families insecure, I make my fifty seventh bow.

58. As I resolve to let of egoistic thoughts which make others suffer, I make my fifty eighth bow.

59. As I respect and become thankful for the values of natural world, I make my fifty ninth bow.

60. As I respect and become thankful for the values and traits of other nations, I make my sixtieth bow.

61. As I respect and become thankful for the values and traits of other faiths, I make my sixty first bow.

62. As I respect and become thankful for the values and personalities of other families, I make my sixty second bow.

63. As I respect and become thankful for the values and traits of other people, I make my sixty third bow.

64. As I realize that mutual cooperation and helping each other is the path towards a truthful life, I make my sixty fourth bow.

65. As I understand that the truthful path of mutual cooperation can be realized by our reflection and sacred aspirations, I make my sixty fifth bow.

66. As I deeply understand that my vow of Truth and Peace is the corner stone of my life, I make my sixty sixth bow.

67. As I deeply resolve in my heart not to inflict psychological or physical violence in any circumstance, which is the first article of the vow of Life and Peace, I make my sixty seventh bow.

68. As I repent for all my transgressions of a psychological, verbal, sexual, economic and social nature, I make my sixty eighth bow.

69. As I regret that I was resentful not toward myself but toward society, I make my sixty ninth bow.

70. As I resolve to treat everyone wherever and whenever with a peaceful mind and action, I make my seventieth bow.

71. As I resolve to become thankful for the friendship of all living beings, I make my seventy first bow.

72. As I resolve to respect all lives without any prejudice and bias, I make seventy second bow.

73. As I resolve to live in a humble and diligent way in order to abandon injustice within myself as well as in this society, I make my seventy third bow.

74. As I resolve to resist all kinds of prejudice and all causes of violence, I make my seventy fourth bow.

75. As I understand and respect others and thus realize my life shines, I make my seventy fifth bow.

76. As I resolve to have the attitude of deep listening and conversation, which is the third article of Life and Peace Vow, I make my seventy sixth bow.

77. As I remember that the beginning of violence starts from my opinionated ideas and hatred towards others because of differences, I make my seventy seventh bow.

78. As I remember that I need to learn the history, but need to be liberated from the past, I make my seventy eighth bow.

79. As I resolve to solve all matters in a candid and humble way and treat others with great patience and generosity, I make my seventy ninth bow.

80. As I protect all human’s freedom of expression and diversity of all cultures, I make my eightieth bow.

81. As I resolve to live the fire of sharing and modesty, which is the fourth article of Life and Peace Vow, I make my eighty first bow.

82. As I am certain of the truth that the life of frugality is the path for eternal progress, I make my eighty second bow.

83. As I resolve to live my life by respecting and helping others, I make my eighty third bow.

84. As I resolve to create the peace village within myself first, I make my eighty fourth bow.

85. As I resolve to protect all lives and their environments which is the fifth article of Life and Peace Vow, I make my eighty fifth bow.

86. As I repent that my way of living has polluted the environment, I make my eighty sixth bow.

87. As I ponder that the path to help nature, farming village, agriculture is the way to make all living beings alive, I make my eighty seventh bow.

88. As I resolve to protect all eco-systems and respect all the cycles of natural lives, I make my eighty eighth bow.

89. As I resolve to become the pioneer who realizes the peace of the Korean peninsula, which is the sixth article of Life and Peace Vow, I make my eighty ninth bow.

90. As I understand that peace can be realized only through the action of truth, love and non-violence, I make my ninth bow..

91. As I resolve to become the pioneer to actualize non-violence and prevent the war in Korea, I make my ninety first vow.

92. As I resolve to resist with non-violence any kind of authority, custom and violence that make people unhappy, I make my ninety second bow.

93. As I resolve to study and practice the truth, which is the seventh article of Life and Peace Vow, I make my ninety third bow.

94. As I realize that my spiritual study and practice to calm my mind is the path to realize peace in the world, I make my ninety fourth bow.

95. As I realize the path to cure and purify my mind is the way to realize peace in the world, I make my ninety fifth bow.

96. As I realize that my small deeds of non-violence, words and thoughts are the foundation of world peace, I make my ninety sixth bow.

97. As I realize that I am the light of life and peace, I make my ninety seventh bow.

98. As I pray that the light which I illuminates shines on my neighbors and this society, I make my ninety eighth bow.

99. As I pray that all people become the light of life and peace and this illuminates the world, I make my ninety ninth bow.

100. As I pray that the light that I kindle leads all sentient beings to live in peace and happiness, I make my one hundredth bow.  

What's Changed?

Welcome to this exclusive Rap News broadcast, helmed by the veteran anchor, and Iraq War Hero, Brian Washington. Today we seek to understand the cause of the tension which has gripped the Police States of America following the seemingly unstoppable deaths of black people at the hands of Officers of the Piece. What is the cause of these #BlackLivesMatters hastags and the protests erupting around the country? What is this ‘R-‘ word that everyone keeps bandying about…? What about that ‘history’ thing? Featuring newly installed Chief of Militarised Police, General Baxter, and a guest from the ‘Civil Rights’ movement, one Marvin Uggenrite, join indefatigable warrior for truth, Brian Washington, as he attempts to get to the bottom of this… or scrape the bottom of the barrel trying. For the first time ever Juice Rap News tunes into the Main Stream Media BS frequency for an entire episode… what could possibly go wrong?

Written & created by Giordano Nanni & Hugo Farrant in a suburban backyard home studio in Melbourne, Australia, on Wurundjeri Land.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

This is What the U.S. Pays For.....

Gorlovka is in a region controlled by eastern Ukrainian self-defense forces. The Kiev junta's military was behind the attack. Locals also say the mortars came from the direction of army positions.

Kiev says self-defense forces shelled their own families and neighborhoods.  

Memorial Day War Machine Resistance

Video from Brunswick, Maine Memorial Day parade with PeaceWorks and Veterans for Peace delegation.

We actually should have had more than 100 people with us during the parade but many supporters are afraid to show their face in public or they have given up hope that anying good will come from protesting any more.  One thing we can be sure of is that when good people don't speak out, especially when their own government has become fascist (the wedding of corporations and the state), then you can count on for sure that things will indeed get worse.  It's astounding to me how many people have so little courage of their convictions.  Mind blowing.....

One person wrote me yesterday after my blog post about 'liberals' and thought I was too hard on them.  The critic said we need everyone with us.  But are many liberals really with us?  What do they actually do to speak out against endless war and its deadly connection to austerity budgets?  Please show me - correct me if I am missing something?

I recently went to a meeting of a room packed full of liberals and the person running the meeting asked for a show of hands of those willing to write a letter to our local paper about our right-wing Gov. LePage's war on the poor in Maine.  I didn't see one hand go up.  I read the local paper everyday and keep waiting to see some of these liberals writing to the paper.  It's a rare occasion.

So if the liberals are too timid (or lazy, or not carrying enough, or whatever) to even write a letter what makes me think that when the clamp comes down hard on us that we will be able to count on those hiding in the shadows?

Yes it's gotten so bad that even people who carry flags and banners in a local parade are considered the radicals.  Heaven help us all......

You are not supposed to say these kind of things in polite company - usually the people that tell you that are trying to cover for their own complicity on some level.  I'm over this though man - I'm tired of seeing people in Gaza, Ukraine, Syria, Yemen, Ferguson, Baltimore, Cleveland and beyond being killed with US $$$ and Pentagon support.

It's a frigging global war and we are all right in the middle of it.

Video by Peter Woodruff

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

More US-NATO War Mongering

Barack Obama accuses Russia of adopting an “increasingly aggressive” stance on Ukraine, during a meeting with NATO's chief in the White House. RT's Gayane Chichakyan has the details.

The hypocrisy of the US-NATO global war machine is over the top.  They push, push, push against others and when anyone reacts to the bully they are accused of being the aggressor.  It works though because so many people in the western world have been reduced to consumers and entertainment junkies - thus they fall prey to the lies constantly flowing out of the White House and from NATO HQ in Brussels.  

At the same time our own nation crumbles as human needs and the physical infrastructure collapse due to social disinvestment in order to pump up the war machine.  Sadly few of the liberals that are tied to the Democrats will bother to take on Washington - as they still want to believe in the tooth fairy and Santa Claus. They say things like "Maybe if we just elect the right person he/she will fix it for us?"  We heard that about Obama - in fact after all the betrayals by Obama many liberals still defend him. It's amazing and hard to watch.

These folks are living in a dream world of days gone by - but there is little chance to reason with them.  They fear being labeled as "radicals" because their desire to be liked and to fit into the prevailing local culture trumps doing what is now needed if we are to survive. Only active non-violent civil resistance has a chance to stop this run-a-way war train. Most liberals are still trying to be a 'success' within the existing system or think they will be more effective inside traditional structures that have long ago been hollowed out. Real democracy has been drowned by the corporate oligarchy.  It's beyond time to see things as they truly are and to stand up and be counted - on behalf of the future generations.

More on Western Support for ISIL

New declassified reports have revealed that Washington had prior information about the presence of Takfiri terrorists in Syria and their plan to establish their so-called ‘Islamic State’ in the heart of the Middle East.

Brunswick Memorial Day Parade

PeaceWorks and Maine Veterans for Peace joined together yesterday to walk in the Memorial Day parade through Topsham and Brunswick, Maine.

We had a delegation of 25 people and once again got a decent response from the crowd during the almost two-mile parade route.

We got the best response in downtown Brunswick where there were a huge number of people assembled.

Photos by Richard Clement

Navy Impacts on Sea Life

Our Maine Peace Walk planning group met in Bath last Saturday to take the next steps in organizing our October 9-24 walk through the state.  The walk will be entitled: Militarization of the Seas - Pentagon's Impact on the Oceans. The walk will begin in Ellsworth, Maine and follow Highway 1 south to Portsmouth, New Hampshire where the Navy submarine facility is located.

We had folks at the planning meeting from Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.  Like our previous walks this one will be led by monks and nuns from the Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist order.

The Pentagon has the largest carbon footprint on our Mother Earth.  Waging endless war consumes massive amounts of fossil fuels and lays waste to significant environmentally sensitive places on the planet - particularly the oceans.

One example of military impacts on sea life is the Navy's testing of sonar.  Research has shown that beaked and blue whales are sensitive to mid-frequency active sonar and move rapidly away from the source of the sonar, a response that disrupts their feeding and can cause mass strandings. Some marine animals, such as whales and dolphins, use echolocation or "biosonar" systems to locate predators and prey. It is conjectured that active sonar transmitters could confuse these animals and interfere with basic biological functions such as feeding and mating. Study has shown whales experience decompression sickness, a disease that forces nitrogen into gas bubbles in the tissues and is caused by rapid and prolonged surfacing. Although whales were originally thought to be immune to this disease, sonar has been implicated in causing behavioral changes that can lead to decompression sickness.

The U.S. Navy has confirmed that two months ago when three beaked whales were beached in Southern Guam, sonar testing was in fact being conducted in the very same area.

The Navy’s most widely used sonar systems operate in the mid-frequency range. Evidence of the danger caused by these systems surfaced dramatically in 2000, when whales of four different species stranded themselves on beaches in the Bahamas. Although the Navy initially denied responsibility, the government's investigation established that mid-frequency sonar caused the strandings.

After the incident, the area's population of Cuvier's beaked whales nearly disappeared, leading researchers to conclude that they either abandoned their habitat or died at sea. Similar mass strandings have occurred in the Canary Islands, Greece, Madeira, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Hawaii and other sites around the globe. 

Monday, May 25, 2015

America Admittedly Behind ISIS "Surge"

By Tony Cartalucci 

Taking advantage of a Syrian military stretched thin to protect everywhere at the same time, high concentrations of well-coordinated Al Qaeda forces, based in NATO-member Turkey as well as in US-allies Jordan and Saudi Arabia, have attacked across several fronts. The tactical and strategic gains are minimal compared to the initial stages of the West's proxy war against Syria beginning in 2011, but the Western media is intentionally fanning the flames of hysteria specifically to break both support for Syria from abroad, and fracture resistance from within.

This latest attempt to overwhelm the Syrian people, its government, and its armed forces comes with several shocking revelations. Previously, veteran award-winning journalists foretold the coming conflict in Syria, warning how the US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel were openly planning to use Al Qaeda as a proxy force to overthrow Syria first, then Iran and how it would unfold into a cataclysmic sectarian war. There were also signed and dated policy papers advocating the use of terrorism and the provocation of war to directly target Iran after Syria and Hezbollah had been sufficiently weakened.

However, now, there is a US Department of Defense (DoD) document confirming without doubt that the so-called "Syrian opposition" is Al Qaeda, including the so-called "Islamic State" (ISIS), and that the opposition's supporters - the West, Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar - specifically sought to establish safe havens in Iraq and eastern Syria, precisely where ISIS is now based.
America is Behind ISIS 

Looking at maps recently produced by the Western media and Western policy think tanks, it can be seen clearly that Al Qaeda/ISIS is streaming out of NATO and US ally territory, forming up in these two safe havens, and aimed both at the Syrian government and Iran.

Despite the Western narrative of "moderate rebels," the West itself has been increasingly admitting that such "rebels" do not exist. They also admit that to establish "stability," they must begin openly working with "questionable actors."

Michael O'Hanlon, a signatory of the Brookings Institution's "Which Path to Persia?" policy paper calling for terrorism and intentional provocations to overthrow the government of Iran, stated in a USA Today op-ed titled, "Michael O'Hanlon: American boots needed in Syria," that:
In the short term, this strategy requires an acceleration of our train and equip program for Syrian opposition fighters — including perhaps a bit less puritanical approach in who we are willing to work with. Most Syrian moderates are tired of waiting for us, or already dead given our delays in helping them. So we may have to tolerate working with some questionable actors to get things started.

"Working with some questionable actors," is O'Hanlon and US policymakers' way of saying they intend to provide open material support to terrorists, including Al Qaeda, as they've been covertly doing all along, and as was warned against as early as 2007 by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh in his article, "The Redirection: Is the Administration's new policy benefiting our enemies in the war on terrorism?" which explicitly stated (emphasis added):

To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.
If  Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists predicting verbatim the Syrian conflict and Western support for Al Qaeda terrorists years before these events unfolded, and US policymakers are now openly admitting they are willing to work with Al Qaeda isn't convincing enough, perhaps a signed and dated Department of Defense document admitting as much is.

DoD Document Admits Plot to Carve Out Safe Haven for ISIS 

Judicial Watch, a US-based foundation seeking "transparency" in government, released a 7 page document dated 2012, detailing the background and status of the Syrian conflict. It admits that the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda form the basis of the "opposition." It then admits that (emphasis added):

Development of the current events into proxy war: with support from Russia, China, and Iran, the regime is controlling the areas of influence along coastal territories (Tartus and Latakia), and is fiercely defending Homs, which is considered the primary transportation route in Syria. On the other hand, opposition forces are trying to control the eastern areas (Hasaka and Der Zor), adjacent to the western Iraqi provinces (Mosul and Anbar), in addition to neighboring Turkish borders. Western countries, the Gulf States and Turkey are supporting these efforts.   

It also admits that terrorists are entering Syria from Iraq, hardly what one could call a "civil war," and clearly instead an invasion.

The document also admits that (emphasis added):

The opposition forces will try to use the Iraqi territory as a safe haven for its forces taking advantage of the sympathy of the Iraqi border population, meanwhile trying to recruit fighters and train them on the Iraqi side, in addition to harboring refugees (Syria).         

If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia Expansion (Iraq and Iran).
That "Salafist principality" mentioned by the DoD in 2012 is of course now known as the "Islamic State." The DoD at the time openly admitted that the opposition's foreign sponsors supported the creation of such a principality, and clearly ISIS must have had such support to maintain its hold on vast expanses of territory in both Syria and Iraq, while propping up a military machine capable of fighting the combined forces of Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. Indeed, the DoD's admissions in this document explain precisely how ISIS has been able to perpetuate its activities throughout the region - with "Western countries, the Gulf States, and Turkey" supporting these efforts.

Narratives of a US "war on the Islamic State" are meant clearly to obscure this admitted and documented conspiracy, and serve as a means for US troops to directly violate Syrian airspace and territory incrementally until US forces are able to openly begin dismantling the Syrian military and government directly.

Appeasement and Accommodation are not Options  

The Syrian war is not a localized conflict with limited goals. It is one leg of a much larger agenda to destroy Iran next, then move on to Russia and China. Combined with the Syrian campaign, the West has attempted to create arcs of destabilization across Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and completely encircling China in Southeast Asia.

What this constitutes is a World War executed through the use of 4th generation warfare. At the same time, the West attempts to seek temporary appeasement and accommodation  for itself so that it can more effortlessly advance its plans. Attempts to portray itself as interested in "negotiations" with Iran while it wages a proxy war on its doorstep is a prime example of this.

The corporate-financier special interests that have hijacked the United States and Europe have essentially declared war on all lands beyond their grasp, as well as on any and all among their own ranks who oppose their hegemonic aspirations.

The vile conspiracy now openly unfolding in Syria, seeing to its destruction at the hands of terrorists the US is openly backing after claiming for over a decade to be "fighting" is a harbinger of the destruction that complacency and failure to resist will bring all other nations caught in the path of these special interests. Nations not immediately caught in the grip of chaos created by this conspiracy must use their time wisely, preparing the appropriate measures to resist. They must study carefully what has been done in Syria and learn from both the mistakes and accomplishments of the Syrian government and armed forces in fighting back.

More important than backing other powers to serve as a counterweight to the West's global aggression, is to identify the consumerist foundation these special interests are built upon and perpetually depend on. By creating alternatives nationally and locally, the swamps from which this global pestilence is emitted can be slowly but permanently drained.

~ Tony Cartalucci is a Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer

Whose Lives Count?

Nick Mottern ( interviews well-known peace activist Kathy Kelly on drone warfare and related topics.

This interview took place at the "Stop the Wars at Home and Abroad" National Conference, sponsored by the United National AntiWar Coalition (UNAC), and held in Secaucus, NJ, May 8 -10, 2015.

Genocide in the Gaza Rubble

The World Bank says Gaza has the worst unemployment rate in the world with an estimated 43 percent of the population without jobs, and it has a poverty rate of 39 percent. This comes days after the Pentagon approved a $1.8 billion deal selling bombs and munition to Israel. Joining The Real News  from Gaza City to discuss all of this is Dan Cohen. Dan is a correspondent for Mondoweiss, based in Israel and Palestine.

A Strategy of Peace

Many believe this speech by JFK was one of the reasons he was killed.  The speech called for disarmament - something that the CIA and the corporate oligarchs who rule the US were not at all happy to hear.

He was sending a message then to the USSR that he wanted to move out of the Cold War.  Today Washington has moved us back into one with Russia.

JFK showed tremendous courage making this speech because he knew that he was putting his life on the line by suggesting peaceful accommodation with the former Soviet Union.

On this Memorial Day let us remember JFK, a man who intimately knew war, but rejected the military as a solution to world problems.

I believe that since the killing of JFK the CIA and corporate oligarchy make sure that no one gets into the White House unless they have been fully 'vetted'.  Thus our string of Johnson-Nixon-Carter-Reagan-Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama as president all indicate to me that these 'ambitious men without strong core beliefs' were put in place because they would gladly serve as puppets for the real power.  Since JFK the oligarchy takes no chances - so they run a horse in both Republican and Democrat races.

That's why Hillary is their current top choice for the next round - the oligarchy will remain in complete control but Hillary will help neutralize many women and 'progressive' activists as Obama has done on the way to endless global war and austerity at home.

Watching the oligarchies in Ukraine closely for the past year has given me a new way of looking at the corporate oligarchy here in the US.  We often don't see what is right in front of our faces....

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Stone: I Grew Up With a Disney World Version of History

Vladimir Posner/Oliver Stone Interview from Jacques Clouseau on Vimeo.

Russian journalist Vladimir Posner interviews filmmaker Oliver Stone while he was in Moscow working on his upcoming feature film about Edward Snowden.

Around the 30-minute mark it goes blank for a few moments so just skip ahead and the interview resumes.

Sunday Song - Bonus Cut

Sunday Song

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Alexei Lives On....

They say
he was a musician
in his previous life
one of the
self-defense forces
in eastern Ukraine
his people
from attack
by the Kiev junta
armed, trained
and directed

He often spoke
of peace
Ukrainian brothers
he spoke of feeding
the people
offering social
as a vision
of a real nation
and a better future

Alexei Mozgovoi
was killed today
gunned down
in an ambush
by shooters
who felt
by his peaceful
and directness
as he pointed
the real enemies
of the people
the oligarchies
that rule
from both sides
of the divide

Rest in peace
your word song
will remain
in my heart
for the people
don't divide
one brother
one nation
the other

Sing the song
of peace
with justice
lives on.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Harlem of the West

Among the more worrying trends out of San Francisco in recent years—and the greatest tarnish to the city’s reputation for diversity—is the displacement of longtime residents of color. It’s not only Latinos being pushed out of the Mission District: Census numbers reveal a staggering 35.7 percent decrease in San Francisco's black population between 1990 and 2010. 

'The Last Black Man in San Francisco' Searches for Home in a Fast-Changing City.

Written and directed by Talbot, the film follows Fails—also a co-writer—and his best friend, played by Prentice Sanders. Neither quite at ease in their far-flung neighborhood, Hunters Point, or in the newly tech-ified San Francisco core, Jimmie and Prentice are outcasts at heart, searching for home in their native city as it changes before their eyes.

'Missile Defense' is Destabilizing

This banner arrived in the mail today from the printing company.  The layout design was done by Ellen Davidson and Tarak Kauff from Veterans for Peace.  Thanks to both of them for their good help.

The Global Network will carry this with us to Kyoto, Japan from July 29-Aug 2 for our 23rd annual space organizing conference that is being hosted by peace activists from across the Kyoto Prefecture.

The US recently deployed a 'missile defense' radar in Kyoto Prefecture and the Ukawa village has been resisting the deployment for some time.  During the conference we will take a side trip to join the villagers in a protest against the radar that is being aimed at China.

The US is now deploying "missile defense' systems throughout the Asia-Pacific on land and on-board Navy Aegis destroyers.  These interceptors play an important role in US first-strike attack planning.

They are now deployed in Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Okinawa, Guam, Australia, and the Philippines.  Taken together these interceptor systems serve as a loaded gun pointed at the head of China.  Beijing has responded by building more nuclear weapons to ensure they have a "survivable retaliatory capability" and have moved many of their more vulnerable land-based nuclear weapons onto submarines so they are harder to hit in a possible Pentagon first-strike attack.

The US Space Command has been annually war gaming such a first-strike attack on China and Russia for many years.  In the computer war game the US fires weapons from space and through space in order to take out the "enemy" nuclear forces.  Then when China or Russia attempt to fire their remaining retaliatory forces the US 'missile defense' systems are used as a shield against them giving the Pentagon a theoretical successful first-strike.

The US walked away from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty with Russia soon after George W. Bush became president.  The ABM Treaty prevented either side from deploying 'missile defense' systems near the other nation which would give one side a strategic advantage.

Since the US withdrew from the ABM Treaty the Pentagon has been encircling both Russia and China with the destabilizing systems.

What is ALEC?

An Atlanta TV station just aired one of the best takedowns of the secretive nature of ALEC we've ever seen:
Posted by Media Matters for America on Friday, May 22, 2015

Stop Demonizing the Poor and Immigrants

On May 21st, more than 600 people marched and rallied in Portland against proposed cuts to General Assistance for asylum seekers and refugees in Maine.

Our right-wing Gov. Paul LePage continues to demonize the poor and immigrants in Maine - blaming them for our economic problems which is pure nonsense.

Corporations in Maine get hundreds of millions of dollars each year in state tax breaks but sadly few ever mention that fact.  Corporate welfare makes support for the poor and immigrants look like peanuts.

Chickens Come Home to Roost

Clashes are reported in central Kiev, Ukraine where crowds of protesters are rallying against the economic crisis and the soaring cost of private loans.

It was only a matter of time before the people turned on the US-NATO backed regime in Kiev which has been slashing public services and putting all their bailout funds from the US and EU into war on the people of eastern Ukraine.

There is no way that Kiev can maintain the war against their own citizens near the Russian border.  Maybe this is what Washington-Berlin-Paris-Brussels have come to understand, thus we see them backing away from their Kiev puppet project.

I wish these types of protests would stop burning tires.  The toxic pollution released is bad for all of us.  Get more creative like the Koreans do and make things that when burned reveal a message of opposition to the problem at hand.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Iran Has No Nuclear Bomb

Mohammad Javad Zarif (Minister of Foreign Affairs) criticizes the focus on limiting Iran's "breakout" potential -- the amount of time it would take it to develop a nuclear weapon -- and claims that Iran has long been capable of making a nuclear bomb if it wanted to....but it hasn't.

Israel has more than 200 nuclear weapons and refuses to sign the UN's Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which Iran has signed.  Sadly no western governments ever complain about Israel's bombs.

Support the Workers

I joined the march and rally of hundreds of workers at Bath Iron Works (BIW) today here in Maine during their half-hour lunch break.  Even though their union contract is good for another year the company (General Dynamics) boss Fred Harris is sabotaging the collective bargaining agreement and trying to force concessions that fall outside of the union contract.  Things like outsourcing of jobs to non-union workers are among the several items in contention.

Even though I often join a peace vigil at BIW calling for the conversion of the shipyard I still support the workers right to have a union.  I was trained as an organizer by the United Farm Workers Union so my heart has always been with the people who do the hard work that produce the enormous profits for the mega-corporations.

The Navy has determined that its shipbuilding budget is “unsustainable.” It can’t afford to cover the mounting costs of new aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines, and the expensive Zumwalt destroyers being built at BIW. The latter cost more than double what the previous Aegis destroyer cost - price per ship has risen to more than $4 billion. The Navy’s solution to its budget crisis?  Cut jobs, outsource to non-union workers, and, over time, likely move to get rid of the unions at shipyards like BIW.

What is the Plan B for Bath? Who ever thought the nearby Navy base in Brunswick would close and that thousands of jobs would be lost? How can our nation afford the expensive high-tech weapons systems that are costing the taxpayers an arm and a leg? How can we effectively deal with the coming ravages of climate change unless we immediately begin a transformation of our industrial policy from endless war to building rail systems, wind turbines, a solar society, and tidal power – all of which would help us in some degree deal with climate change?

Where is our congressional delegation when we need it to advocate for a new sustainable technology direction? Sen. Collins, Sen. King, Rep. Pingree and Rep. Poliquin remain on bended knees begging for more Pentagon funding because military production is the only real federal jobs program left.  They might talk a good game about environmental sustainability, but what are they doing to lead our state and the nation toward the kind of conversion that will be necessary if our children and grandchildren are to have any chance of decent lives?  The Native Americans said that all decisions must be made based on how they impact the next seven generations. Sadly, our elected officials are thinking only about their next election!

Studies have long revealed that our tax dollars create fewer jobs in military spending than in other fields. Building commuter rail systems at BIW would, in fact, nearly double the jobs. In addition, rail would get us out of our polluting cars and offer future generations a chance of survival.

I will keep vigiling for conversion of BIW (and more jobs) but will also support the good men and women who find themselves stuck in the middle of the US's industrial policy which is essentially endless war making.

One of the union leaders during the rally at BIW today quoted abolitionist Frederick Douglass who said, "Power concedes nothing without a demand, it never did and never will."  He asked the assembled workers, "What is our demand?"  I agree with that sentiment.......

Photos by Peter Woodruff

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Protest Against Arctic Sea Drilling

An estimated 500 climate activists took to kayaks, canoes, paddleboards, and even a solar-powered party barge on Saturday to tell Shell to get the hell out of Seattle. Rallying cry: #sHellNo!

The oil giant brought a huge drilling rig, the Polar Pioneer, to the city’s port last Thursday, over objections from the mayor, city council, and a whole lot of pissed-off Seattleites. Shell plans to use the port as a staging ground for oil drilling operations in the Arctic over the next two years. The kayaktivists made their objections clear — and made for a pretty spectacle against the blue-gray background of Puget Sound.

The fossil fuel corporations are itching to start drilling in the Arctic Sea as climate change is melting the ice faster than anyone had expected.  

The Pentagon has created the "US Navy Arctic Roadmap: 2014-2030".  The plan includes such gems as the Navy needing ways to distribute fuel in the [Arctic] region to air and surface platforms.  Fuel allocation needs to be staffed and protected which means bases will be built.  How close would they be to Russia and how would that go over?  The current US-NATO movement of major offensive forces along the Russian border, having used the Ukraine crisis as a pretext, helps the military more effectively "control" the Russian bear in the event of future conflict over Arctic resource extraction.
In March, 2014 the Navy took New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, Sen. Angus King (I-Maine), and others for a submarine ride below the Arctic ice.  Friedman wrote:

“In our lifetime, what was [in effect] land and prohibitive to navigate or explore, is becoming an ocean, and we’d better understand it,” noted Admiral Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations. “We need to be sure that our sensors, weapons and people are proficient in this part of the world,” so that we can “own the undersea domain and get anywhere there.” Because if the Arctic does open up for shipping, it offers a much shorter route from the Atlantic to the Pacific than through the Panama Canal, saving huge amounts of time and fuel.

Our Sen. King here in Maine sent around an email called Impressions from the Arctic.  He told his constituents that there has been "a 40% reduction in ice as a result of global warming".  He reported that "previously inaccessible" gas and oil reserves were now going to create "new opportunities".  King concluded, "I am convinced we need to increase our capacity in the region, something I intend to press upon my colleagues on the Armed Services Committee as we work on our military priorities for the coming years."

Sen. King is now lobbying hard to have the next annual Arctic development conference in Maine next October.  

One reason the US is pushing for 'regime change' in Russia is because that nation has the longest land border with the Arctic Sea which gives them an advantage in the region.  So by breaking Russia into smaller countries the US hopes that would give the oil extraction corporations an easier hand in controlling things there.

Human Rights in Saudi Arabia?

“No one dares to criticize publically Saudi Arabia, and that is a result of many things, including obviously the interests that Western governments have [in the country],” Amnesty International’s Sevag Kechichian told RT’s Ben Swann. Commenting on the state of human rights in the Middle Eastern country just one day after authorities began to post job listings for beheaders, the researcher told RT that the West’s stance is “absolute hypocrisy.”

The head choppers in Saudi Arabia make ISIS look like choir boys.......but do we hear any outrage on Fox News or CNN?  

Poor Poroshenko

Amidst accusations that Ukraine's army was to blame for a deadly shelling attack in Donetsk late Monday night, President Poroshenko, speaking in a BBC interview, said Ukraine needs to prepare itself to repel a Russian offensive. Geopolitical analyst Eric Draitser told RT that President Poroshenko wants to escalate the conflict.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Empire of Bases

For IN the NOW with Anissa Naouai, The Resident asks Americans how they feel about their military having more than 600 bases spread throughout the world.

'Color Revolution' in Macedonia Draws Response from Mass Public

The attempted 'color revolution' in Macedonia draws a huge response as people counter the US-NATO staged attempt to overthrow their government.  Initial assessments count over 90,000 citizens, making this rally the largest in the history of Macedonia. 

People of the former Yugoslavia (Serbia, Macedonia, etc.) are more politically sophisticated regarding the Color/Spring tactic as it was used against them twenty-five years ago when US-NATO broke Yugoslavia into pieces.  

The 'color revolution' template is funded by the CIA, USAID, National Endowment for Democracy and the George Soros foundation in order to turn governments into corporate controlled entities as we've recently seen happen in Ukraine, Georgia, Libya, and other nations. 

Experts say that as soon as Macedonia started to build relations with Russia and work with China to develop economic opportunities in the Balkans, the situation in the country suddenly radicalized, as the West did not like the steps taken by the government.   

Sputnik reports that Georgy Engelhardt, from the Russian Academy of Sciences, said the current government in Skopje decided not to follow the example of most European countries and refused to impose sanctions against Russia. Macedonia, being heavily dependent on the export of agricultural products, could not afford to lose the Russian market.

Second, Macedonia could potentially become a corridor-country for Russia's Turkish Stream, a natural gas pipeline from Russia to Turkey. Since the United States and the EU worked hard to close down Russia's South Stream last year, they are now trying to block Macedonia from taking part in the South Stream project, Engelhardt said.

Global Network News

  • I taped my latest public access TV show (airs on 13 stations across Maine and on the Internet) today and was lucky to have Global Network board member Regina Hagen from Darmstadt, Germany as my guest.  We covered alot of territory in the 29-minutes including Germany's unclear position on Ukraine, European space policy, and the UN's Nuclear Non-Proliferation (NPT) Review conference that she recently attended in New York.  The show should be available on YouTube in about a week.

  • We had three Maine Veterans for Peace members (Dan Ellis, Bob Dale, and Regis Tremblay) volunteering as studio production crew for the taping of the TV show.  Thanks to the guys for their great help in making this episode possible.

  • Just got word this morning from Sicily that the No MUOS group will be sending a representative to the Global Network's 23rd annual space organizing conference in Kyoto, Japan on July 29-Aug 2.  In addition we have members coming from Germany, England, Sweden, Norway, India, Nepal, Malaysia, South Korea, Japan and the US.  (Likely activists from other countries will show up as well.)  During the conference we will make a solidarity trip to a village in Kyoto prefecture where the US has deployed a 'missile defense' radar that is aimed at China. A few of our leaders will go to Okinawa before our Kyoto meeting to stand in solidarity with the people there who are struggling to oppose US military bases on their island. Some will go to Jeju Island after our meeting as well.

  • The Global Network has been invited to send a representative from our organization to the 4th International Seminar for Peace and Abolition of Foreign Military Bases that will take place on November 22-25, 2015 in the province of Guantánamo, Cuba where a territory of 117 square kilometers has been illegally occupied for more than one-hundred years by a US naval base that is currently one of the most terrifying and inhuman torture centers of the planet.  While we meet in Kyoto for our annual event we'll make the decision which of our board members to send to Cuba on our behalf.

Monday, May 18, 2015

U.S. War Games on Russia's Southern Border

The United States and Georgia have started a two-week military exercise in the southern Caucasus Republic on Monday. For Russia the presence of US troops a few kilometers from its border is a provocation, just as is a US promise of the NATO membership to Georgia. Some 600 US and Georgian soldiers are participating in the exercise, for which the US redeployed the entire motor brigade and 14 M2 Bradley tanks from its base in Bulgaria.

It's so clear to me what the US is doing right now.  Dropping lots of weapons and US troops along Russian borders.  Sending US 'diplomats' to Europe and Moscow claiming that Washington wants peace in Ukraine at the same time that the Pentagon is training Kiev's Nazi battalions in western Ukraine.  Recently the US-NATO backed Kiev Army has been setting up field weapons depots holding up to 2,000 tons of munitions along the line of engagement with the self-defense forces in eastern Ukraine. This is in obvious violation of the Minsk-2 ceasefire agreements.

And probably the biggest insult of all - US Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland ('Fuck the EU') has suggested that the US, which did everything possible to torpedo the Minsk-2 ceasefire talks, now wants to join the talks as a party.  As far as I am concerned the US is attempting to put on a public relations campaign to appear to be wanting peace in Ukraine but the actions of Washington are 100% the opposite of a true peace broker.  The US is increasingly arming and training the Kiev forces, holding war games on Russia's borders, and now wants to get its dirty nose under the tent where ceasefire talks are happening in order to blow them apart. 

It's a dastardly strategy but that is what Washington does these days - slight of hand, master of illusion, say one thing and do the opposite. No one should fall for any of this......