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, August 31, 2017

Don't Let This Story Die

One of the best anti-war documentaries of all time!

I had a call today from a newspaper reporter in San Diego, California where Veterans For Peace is now organizing a protest against an upcoming airshow.  The reporter wanted to find out why and when we began organizing air show protests here in Maine.

MB and I moved to Brunswick, Maine in 2003 and we began organizing protests at the Navy air station in the town soon after arriving.  A couple of times we held a Friday-Sunday 48-hour vigil and fast at the front gate of the former Navy base when the Blue Angels were coming to do an air show.  We asked folks to join us at any time during the weekend and many did - even in the middle of the night Tom Sturtevant and Tom Whitney came to sit with us in the dark at the gate.

During the George W. Bush presidential years more people turned out for local protests - sometimes hundreds.  Then when Obama became president the numbers dried up overnight (as Democrats foolishly thought that Obama would stop our wars) and if lucky we got 50 folks to an airshow protest.

While on the phone with the San Diego reporter I asked her if she knew about the Vietnam war sailors revolt in her city that is reported on in the film above. She said no.  So I emailed her the link and told her she needs to watch it.

Sailors organized a campaign to say they didn't want their aircraft carrier stationed in San Diego to go back and bomb Vietnam again.  They set up make shift polling stations all over the community and held an election asking the public if they wanted the ship to sail or stay home.  It's a great story and should never be forgotten.

Please do watch, and share, this great documentary.


Loukie Lofchie Presente!

Video by Eric Herter

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Climate Change Alert!

While the world's attention is on Texas, floods in Bangladesh, India and Nepal have killed 1,200 people and affected 16 million others.

It's time for the US military to be converted to The Natural Guard that would be used in America and around the world to help organize and provide humanitarian aid in these increasingly urgent natural disasters.

Demand it repeatedly.....

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

The Coming Storm

It's sadly ironic that one of the strongest regions of global warming deniers is the south/southwest of the US - with Texas being one of the top denier states.  One can't help but wonder what folks there are now thinking about Hurricane Harvey's relationship to climate change?

Some contend that government weather modification operations and general climate change increased the severity of the storm. We've been hearing for years that warmer seas evaporate more quickly. Warmer air holds more water vapor. So, as temperatures rise around the world, the skies store more moisture and dump it more intensely.  There is a proven link – known as the Clausius-Clapeyron equation – which shows that for every half a degree Celsius in warming, there is about a 3% increase in atmospheric moisture content.

Houston is the most populous city in the state of Texas and the fourth-most populous city in the United States. It has a population of 2.3 million and an area of 667 square miles (1,730 km).  This hurricane has caused major havoc and it will be incredibly difficult and expensive to recover from this massive storm any time soon.

As I've listened to a bit of the news reports on the radio (I don't watch TV so I can't talk about what they are saying on the boob tube) Texas officials have called the storm a 1,000 year flood event.  So they do acknowledge that this 'event' is not normal but there does seem to be some serious reluctance to mention the connection to climate change.

Even the Pentagon has said that climate change will have serious implications for their operations so clearly, in spite of what they might say, the government does know that climate change is staring us in the face.

My guess is that the ruling elites want to down play global warming because they don't want to 'alarm' the public and have a restless nation demand fundamental change - moving us away from our obvious fossil fuel addiction.  The oligarchic forces that control Washington today are in large part the fossil fuel industry and they are more than reluctant to interrupt their profit stream no matter what the consequences.

But ultimately at some point you'd think the public would take this slap across the face by Mother Nature as a serious wake-up call and begin to realize that these kinds of weather 'events' are going to be more common in the coming years and will affect many more of us.

One final word on this climate change issue.  Sadly as I scan the landscape of climate change activism it is fairly easy to see that the vast majority of environmental groups working on global warming do not dare go near the issue of the Pentagon's #1 carbon bootprint on the planet.

I can't help but wonder how in the world those groups think they can begin to deal with this mega-issue without calling for the conversion of the war machine this very second?!

Why are they so silent on the military's massive contribution to this coming storm?  Shouldn't the public ask them?


Monday, August 28, 2017

Politics Art Roots Culture

By Will Griffin (Veterans For Peace)

Space. Every community needs it. In Michigan City, Indiana, two Iraq veterans turned anti-war activists have been focusing their energy on creating a vibrant, all-inclusive safe place for community members to gather, share ideas, create projects, and display their work. Vince Emanuele and Sergio Kochergin call it PARC – Politics Art Roots Culture.

If you’re an activist, organizer, artist, musician, or just someone that wants to engage with your community, this is the place to do it. Every town in America needs a place just like PARC. We all need places to share our ideas, speak to each other face-to-face, create projects together, and collect ideas on moving forward. Having a space to do this is what changes society.

If you’re an activist-organizer reading this, where was the last place you had a meeting? At a coffee shop? At a church? Somewhere in a place that you couldn’t call yours? Yeah, me too. I’m also tired of buying coffee in order to have a place to sit down with my friends.

Keep Space for Peace Week

Please let us know ASAP if your community plans any local events during the week of Oct 7-14.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Maine Airshow Protest Photos

Photos by Peter Woodruff

More photos by Ellen Davidson can be seen here

Sunday Song

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Airshow Protest in Maine Coverage

We had about 35 folks there with us today outside the airshow for our protest. The consensus was that we had a good reaction from many of the cars entering the former Naval air base - most of our folks felt that the positive out weighed the negative - of course the vast majority just look straight ahead like zombies and have no reaction. But of those who gave any kind of reaction it was more positive.

I told folks in our closing circle that many people often complain that "we are always preaching to the choir". But today, with tens of thousands of people passing directly by us, we were taking our opposition to endless war right to the citizens that need to hear the message the most.

After the protest nine of us had lunch together at a local pizza joint and then had a meeting at our house of the Maine Peace Walk planning committee. The peace walk will happen October 13-21 and this year will primarily be focused in the Bath-Brunswick area. It was a good day of activism here in the Midcoast and we were very grateful to those who came from across the state to join with us - and our two friends Tarak and Ellen from New York that were with us as well.


U.S. needs to 'release our share' of Afghanistan's mineral wealth......

Friday, August 25, 2017

This is Sick....and Very Sad

U.S. is buying mercenaries to fight its wars on the cheap.

This is evil and shows how far that Washington has fallen.  No morals - it's just all about corporate profits.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Protesting Hells Angels War Show in Brunswick

Seven of us gathered for just over an hour around noon today in downtown Brunswick to hold banner, signs and hand out flyers to promote our protest against the Navy Blue Angels airshow this coming Saturday in our community.

Our timing turned out to be quite good as the Hells Angels flight team was zooming around Brunswick in order to promote their appearance.  They blasted just overhead along Main Street in Brunswick several times and then flew various formations over the city during most of our time on the street.

Many hundreds of cars passed by and got a good look at our banner as did the noon hour walking traffic in the downtown area - a popular place to visit during the summer time.  One German couple stopped to talk to us and told one of our folks that they want the US military bases in their country to leave.

I told people who stopped to talk that while we have to listen to this racket for just a weekend, people living near US bases in Okinawa and South Korea (or many other places around the globe) have to listen to these ear-splitting war planes every day.  Then in war zones like Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen they not only get the noise but also the bombs dropped.

Our flyer promoting our protest on Saturday at former Navy air base in Brunswick reads "Real Angels Don't Drop Bombs".  We got some good responses but also had some hecklers shout at us as well.  Many people's minds have been colonized by the US endless war machine - they've swallowed the propaganda that says the 'exceptional' US military is protecting us here at home.

I think we are going to have a good protest on Saturday outside of the Hells Angels war show.  We'll never end this imperial war system unless we repeatedly speak out.


You must stand up with a straight back....

WTHR-TV was live.

Yesterday at 6:08pm 
Protesters held a rally in support of football quarterback Colin Kaepernick outside the NFL offices in New York City. Kaepernick refused to stand for the national anthem due to police brutality against black people and the NFL tried to blackball him from the league.  They have failed but have stirred up national outrage against the NFL.

(NOTE: This was a live, unedited feed from NBC News in New York.)

We like to see ourselves as John Wayne sees us....

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Israel Terrorizing Palestinian Children

Everyone should watch this Israeli Occupier night raid on a Palestinian family. Waking up children at 1:15 am to make their fascist mark and terrify the family.

Don't ever forget that this is paid for with US tax dollars.

Politics as Entertainment (and Distraction)

Trump is not stupid - he is not dumb.  He is a very sick person acting on behalf of the puppet master named Mr. Big.

Trump wishes he could be part of Mr. Big's circle but he is an outlier.  So he debases himself before the world in order to perform the biggest acting role of his life.

Trump's experience in front of the professional wrestling crowds showed that he would be good at taking on the task of rounding up the working class on behalf of the corporate agenda.  It's a brilliant strategy and Trump is doing quite well playing the part.

I am deeply suspicious of everything these days.  The recent election (like most others) was rigged from the start.  The fact that the Bernie Sanders' momentum was killed by the Clinton corporate wing of the 'Democratic Party' was a sign of the lengths the ruling elites will go to deny real democracy at home while preaching its virtues abroad.

What ever political 'positions' Trump may have once had are being cast aside in order to carry out the marching orders from Mr. Big.  He ultimately has no strong inner core of values.  It's all a show to do one primary thing:  keep the public distracted and snarling at each other while the corporations fleece the public purse and destroy the environment.  Even more its a global strategy that requires endless war to take down any obstacles to full spectrum dominance.  Thus the current military takeover of the operation at the White House.

Working class folks who helped put Trump in the White House trusted him and felt they knew him from his exposure on TV.  They hated Clinton (for good reason) and thus saw no other choice.  The Green Party was an after thought for them - especially when its candidate could not easily relate to these same disenchanted citizens.  Trump, by climbing into the wrestling ring, showed the crowds that he was on their side.

The rest is history.

My guess is that some groups now being funded to organize anti-Trump events nationwide are indirectly being paid by the same corporate interests that support The Donald.  Keep the tensions high and people focused on the facade.

Our way out of this political swamp is not to spend all our time mobilizing against the actor but instead keep organizing on the issues and show their ultimate connection to the pockets of Mr. Big.  We've also got to do a better job of exposing who Mr. Big is - Wall Street, the military industrial complex, energy giants, insurance companies, CIA, Silicon Valley, and more.

Trump is a jerk and deserves no sympathy from me or anyone else.  But we can't be so focused on the puppet that we miss following the strings to the greedy hands and agenda of Mr. Big.


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Washington Pushes Kiev to Increase Donbass Shelling

Donbass Rose writes from Ukraine:

In the world of mass media voice of the people goes largely unheard. All struggles, conflicts and worries of the people are carefully ground up and digested through modern media machines. On this channel we are gathering a collection of videos about ongoing struggles of peoples against the machine of elitism. Once again my dear audience it is up to you to watch or not to watch. The main thing is to think for yourself.
US sponsored puppet regime in Kiev has the job to create as much terror and chaos as possible along the Russian border.....the Donbass region of Ukraine is the ultimate trigger for a US war with Russia and Washington is pushing hard for just that. It's insane for sure......

Read more about the current situation here


Plain Clothes Military Coup in Washington

White House chief of staff John Kelly (a general and former commander in the Marines) is now overseeing a virtual military coup inside the Trump administration

I've just returned last night from my son's wedding on the beach in Morro Bay, California.  It was a beautiful event and a great spot to hold the wedding.  His wife Emily's family came over from Taiwan - the second time we'd been with them and we spent some time going to various state parks and wildlife preserves along the coast.  Particularly cool was seeing an Elephant Seal rookery at Piedras Blancas.  Two of my sisters (I have five of them) were able to come which was also very lovely for all of us.

We arrived home late last night soon after Trump had spoken to the nation about extending America's longest, and likely most expensive, war in Afghanistan.  It was no surprise that more US troops will be going to the war zone as his new crew of military brass have convinced him that the US can't 'cut and run' from the region.  The fact that the deep state has inserted John Kelly as Chief of Staff indicates that 'the Donald' will really just be serving as a figure-head in the White House - the real power lies in the hands of the cadre of militarists that now occupy many top positions in his administration.  They will be baby sitting Trump.

The Guardian in the UK spelled it all out quite clearly:

By marching US troops back up the Afghan hill, having previously solemnly vowed to march them down and out of the country, Trump risks the worst of both worlds: leaving the US and its allies neither up nor down, without a clearly defined mission, and stuck in the middle of a worsening conflict.

His speech on Afghanistan on Monday night was long delayed, and it is easy to see why. White House advisers had been arguing for months over what to do about the 16-year-old war, America’s longest. When the speech came, there were no new ideas or initiatives. Instead Trump retained the main planks of Barack Obama’s policy and tried to dress it up as something fresh.

He has committed the US to waging an open-ended conflict with no limit on its scope or duration, and with no agreed measure of what constitutes victory. Now Britain and other NATO allies will be under pressure to perform a similar volte-face, and increase their combined troop deployments above the current level of roughly 6,500.

They were opposed by Steve Bannon and other champions of Trump’s nationalist, “America first” platform, which pledged to end foreign entanglements. Bannon was dismissed from his post as chief strategist last week.

Despite his efforts to justify his about-turn in his prime time TV speech, Trump will find it difficult to convince his domestic supporters, and his foreign allies, that he has a workable policy. And his bad relations with NATO mean he may struggle to get the European troops he wants as the US once again marches up the Afghan hill.

Let's just hope that 'the NATO allies' will think twice before following the US war machine further into this quagmire in Afghanistan - the grave yard of empires.

Let's hope that the liberal Democrats, who had no problem when Obama expanded the Afghanistan war, will also find themselves now able to question and oppose this never ending mistake.

Obviously those who really want to know the truth understand that the military industrial complex loves the Afghanistan occupation - their profits have been massive during these past 16 years.  Also we know that the CIA is heavily involved in the drug trade as the opium from Afghanistan is a big money maker.  In addition the western corporate mining interests have their greedy eyes fixed on the underground profits that are available.

The so-called war in Afghanistan is really about nothing other than securing the country, no matter how many civilians must be killed, to ensure the on-going profits for these corporate pirates that are in control of the US government.  They've held power during all the recent administrations (since Kennedy was killed) but now the curtain has been pulled away as this plain clothes military coup has been put in place.


Sunday, August 20, 2017

Sunday Song

Friday, August 18, 2017

Once We Were Tribal

Driving our rental car last night from Los Angeles to Morro Bay we were listening to KPFK (Non-Commercial Pacifica Radio) and they were playing this clip from now deceased Native American activist/poet John Trudell.

I loved it and happy to share it here.

Spoken word by John Trudell - Track 18 of Descendants Now Ancestors CD - DNA.

Once they were tribal. How were they transformed? How do we protect ourselves and our children from the Predator? How do we decontaminate, decolonize, deprogram?

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Heading to California & Other Bits

Mary Beth and I head to Morro Bay, California tomorrow for several days to be with my son Julian and his wife Emily and some of our combined families.  Two of my sisters are coming and Emily's mom, dad and brother have come over from Taiwan.  Julian's mom will be there as well along with a couple of her grandchildren. 

Julian and Emily have been in the states for about two months - he was working at some debate camps and they've been touring across the south and southwest in recent weeks.  They got married in Taiwan last January and are going to hold another beach ceremony in Morro Bay for the stateside folks who could not make the trip to Taiwan.  So it should be alot of fun for all of us.

It's been a busy week for me - doing several media interviews which can be listened to here, here, here, here, and here.

Once we return home next week I'll have to get right to work doing final preparations for our Navy Blue Angels airshow protest in Brunswick on August 26.  Then I'll be doing a taping of my public access TV show on August 28.

Our Maine Peace Walk is approaching fast (Oct 13-21) as is the Global Network's annual Keep Space for Peace Week (Oct 7-14).  In addition we have our Aegis 9 trial coming up with jury selection on September 7 in West Bath District Court. So it will be an active fall around here.

Another thing I've been up to lately is working on a committee to organize a 'Close all US foreign military bases' national conference for next January that will be held in Baltimore.  It's a great group of folks and we've already held two conference calls to set things in motion.  Sometimes working on these kinds of events can cause you to pull the hair out of your head but our committee is really doing very well together.

As word has spread about the new coalition that we've created to close US bases the organizing committee is hearing from activists all over the world.  Here is one message we got from folks in Germany.

Subject: Duelmen Army Depot, Germany
Dear Friends, we live in Germany, Duelmen, a place where the US Army has opened a new APS (Army Prepositioned Stocks) set in the former Tower Barracks at May 12th, 2017. [The APS program supports the National Military Strategy by strategically prepositioning warfighting stocks afloat and ashore at critical worldwide locations.] This is an operation for ERI/Atlantic Resolve. They have started to store 12,000 pieces of weapons and equipment (modern howitzers M109 Paladin, Air defense systems - we think: HIMARS and Bradley linebacker, etc).

We started a new peace group "Friedensfreunde Duelmen" as our answer. Our goals are "Talking with the Russians, negotiations about mutual controls of weapons and manoeuvres".

We try to get in contact with citizens in Zutendaal/Belgium and in Eygelshoven/Netherlands, little towns 300 miles away from Duelmen, where similar bases are planned.

So we appreciate your initiative very much and try our best to share it with everybody we know: Go tell it to the mountains, over the hills and everywhere. ...
We will keep you informed about our actions.

Michael and Penelope

'It's crazier than I could have ever imagined'

Journalist Abby Martin exposes Zionism on Joe Rogan Podcast.

Taxpayers in the US are subsidizing most of Israel's illegal and genocidal crackdown on the Palestinian people.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

U.S. Must Sign Peace Treaty with North Korea

Bruce Gagnon, coordinator for Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space, joins RT America’s Natasha Sweatte to discuss tensions between the US and North Korea and the former’s culpability in the ongoing mutual hostility.

White Dispossession of America

Demographics show that in just a few years from now people of color will be the majority population in the US.  Many on the right fear that day and much of their current insanity and white supremacy organizing is based on this coming reality.

This video gives you a good glimpse of how one white man of privilege thinks.

Monday, August 14, 2017

They Are the Same War

It was heartening to see the strong and quick response yesterday by activists around the country as they held protests in solidarity with those attacked by Nazi and Klan forces in Charlottesville.

In nearby Brunswick, Maine about 200 folks turned out on the town green for an event.  Some formed a circle singing songs and making statements while others stood along the busy Main Street with signs.  (You can see me with my sign above - last one on the left.)

While standing along the road I felt that our presence was important to send a strong message to the community that the bad behavior in Charlottesville by the fascists cannot be accepted for one second.

The quick turn around by Trump between yesterday and his 'corrected' statement today was an indication of the overwhelming national and international sentiment against this evil of domination and white supremacy.  Our national internal contradictions over genocide of native peoples, slavery, environmental onslaught, and global corporate colonization have always been at odds with the promise of America.  American 'exceptionalism' is a facade to hide corporate rule and at the present moment the people have begun to figure it out.  The problem now is what to do about it?

One thing I realized yesterday was that most of these good-hearted 200 folks in Brunswick won't ever turn out for a peace demonstration at Bath Iron Works - our local manifestation of the US imperial war program.

So if you accept the notion that things are fucked up here at home then how can you allow these same kinds of brutal fascist global domination policies to be used on Jeju Island, Guam, Ukraine, Okinawa, Sicily, Syria, Afghanistan, and Yemen?  What role does human solidarity play in your consciousness?  Can't you make the strategic mental jump that allowing the war machine to flourish world-wide means it will also get stronger here at home?

They are the same war. Charlottesville is Ukraine.  Ferguson is Palestine.  Standing Rock is Jeju Island and Okinawa.

I come to several conclusions as I try to understand these contradictions in the thinking of so many 'progressives'.  (I find I can't call myself that anymore - I don't trust the word.  It has a hollowness to it.) 

Many progressives are locked into the Democratic party and are out doing mining operations for it - recruiting fired up and effective activists and trying to bring them into the party before the next elections.  Many new front groups are being created with money from George Soros, 'progressive foundations', and likely even CIA and/or Homeland Security funds are being used to internally direct the movement.  (Just tell the truth now - where did all those 'pink pussy hats' come from almost overnight?  Were they really hand-knitted or did most of them get flown in from China?)

One thing I've learned over the years is that internal subversion of our movements is indeed going on here in the US.  I came to track it better during the 2014 US directed coup in Kiev.  NGO's were set up and funded in Ukraine to help drive the issues that led to the coup.  These same operatives helped whip the masses into a fervor and delivered them directly into the waiting hands of US corporate interests.  That is all public information now - Victoria Nuland handing out bread to Ukrainians while working with Joe Biden, John McCain and the fascists inside the country.

For years I've asked fellow Americans - what makes you think we are so special that the government, Mr. Big, won't come after us someday?  Well that day has come and they will use the fascists here in the US as their front line storm troops as the oligarchy tries to hang onto power during inevitable imperial collapse.

Help accelerate the imperial take down by standing with those who are fighting Mr. Big in their intense struggles around the world.  Some have to fight the US colonizers with violence as a last resort.  Many others use non-violence because there is still some space to use that preferred organizing method.

I remember hearing Nelson Mandela say that the African National Congress (ANC) was committed to non-violence for many years but had to pick up arms to defend their people against the fascist and racist South African government attacks that Washington fully supported.  It was the same in Nicaragua and El Salvador back in the 1980-90's.  People always want to resolve conflicts non-violently but that is only possible if both sides are willing to seriously negotiate.

We have seen how the US negotiates - the Indians told us that the 'White man speaks with forked tongue'. Washington has always lied to steal land and resources from others and is doing the same thing around the world today.

So until the American left stands for true international solidarity it will be exceedingly difficult to get the US military boot off the necks of people overseas or here at home.


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Call it What it is - Terrorism

Charlottesville Like Ukraine: America's 2nd Civil War?

Ultra-nationalist Klan and neo-Nazi's march through the University of Virginia Friday evening.  Chanting “You will not replace us!” they surrounded and attacked a small group of Black Lives Matter protesters.

Can you tell much difference from the photo above in Charlottesville, Virginia and the one below of the Nazi's in Ukraine that played a key role in the 2014 US orchestrated coup d'etat in Kiev?

Western Ukrainians carry the image of their fascist hero Stepan Bandera who rallied his supporters during WW II to join Hitler's attack on the Soviet Union as the Nazi Army swept through Ukraine.

 Phil Wilayto (who I went to Ukraine with in 2016) lives in Richmond, Virginia today writes:

The next day, Aug. 12, some 500 fascists gathered at Emancipation Park, while many more protesters massed in the surrounding streets. Insults morphed into throwing water bottles, then more dangerous projectiles, then fistfights, while the police stayed in the park and ignored the rising tensions.

“People punched and kicked each other during various scuffles, which often were broken up from within crowds, without police intervention,” reported CNN. This despite the fact that more than 1,000 officers were expected to be deployed, according to city officials.
Rumors spread that they were going to march on a nearby low-income, predominantly Black housing project. Protesters massed at an intersection on the anticipated march route, intending to block the fascists.
That’s when a car rapidly accelerated and plowed into the crowd of protesters, sending several people flying into the air. The driver then slammed into the back of another car at the intersection and drove away rapidly, in reverse, fleeing the scene.
One person was killed. Nineteen more were injured, nine of whom are in serious or critical condition.

The person driving the car was 20-year-old James Alex Fields from Ohio who is with Vanguard America, the neo-Nazi group that organized the protest.

Fields (2nd from left) was seen by the statue of Robert E. Lee, before the crash in Charlottesville. He belongs to Vanguard America, a hate group that uses the nationalist slogan “blood and soil” and believes the U.S. is for the “White American peoples.”

The woman killed was Heather Heyer, age 32, a paralegal in Virginia. She was killed while crossing the street. Heyer was among 20 people struck as Fields barreled his Dodge Challenger down a narrow street teeming with counter-protesters.

Many reports (and my own watching of countless videos from the scene yesterday) clearly showed police virtually absent during most of the worst street fighting.  It reminds me of the story in Odessa, Ukraine on May 2, 2014 when fascists chased people who were petitioning for a federated Ukraine into the Trades Union Hall and then set it on fire.  More than 50 were killed that day.  The police were standing behind the building smoking cigarettes and never lifted a finger to protect those trapped inside the burning building.

Just like in Ukraine, where the predominately nationalist west as been set against the Russian-speaking Ukrainian citizens in the east, we see the effort underway in America to divide the people against one another.  The Klan and Nazi right-wing (and many police departments across the nation) are targeting people of color in order to create civil war conditions.

But we must ask why is this happening?

The American people are not needed anymore by the ruling corporate oligarchies who have gone global with their investments and production.  We see the massive disinvestment across the US as cities and states (like Maine) fall apart and jobs are lost.  Rather than have the people, who are angry and fearful about the future, put the blame squarely where it belongs.... Mr. Big uses his various methods to pit American against American.

Trump's role in all of this is to blow the dog whistle and the far right quickly steps into the circle armed to the teeth and ready to fight against people of color and their many white supporters.  This video below gives a taste of how armed-up these fascists were yesterday in Charlottesville.  They look like military forces but in fact are para-military forces (death squads) that will be used by the oligarchy as their agents to bludgeon those that dare stand in support of those being targeted.

Now just ask yourself this: if Black or white activists were armed like these fascists what would the police do?  In this case the fascists paraded all over Charlottesville with not one bit of reaction from the cops.  What does that tell you?  Who gave the cops the orders to stand asside?

We are going to see more of this in the future.  The relevant question is how do we in the peace and justice movements respond to all of this - especially when the local cops sit back and watch the bully boys attack peaceful protesters?  We should all be talking more about this and demanding that local police not side with the fascists by being absent during these highly dangerous moments.


Sunday Song

Saturday, August 12, 2017

The Real Korean War

The Korean War (1950-1953) was a bloody conflict. It left Korea, North and South, with several million dead and the UN forces (led by the US) involved in the fighting with over 100,000 casualties. But despite fighting as intense and as violent as any other conflict since World War Two, Korea has always been history's 'Forgotten War'.

The US to this day refuses to sign a peace treaty with North Korea - thus the war legally continues.  On July 27, 1953 the US signed an Armistice (ceasefire) with North Korea but that is it.  Thus the continuous US-South Korean war games right along the North Korean border must make Pyongyang wonder - is this the real thing?  Did the Pentagon decide to invade us for real this time?

North Korea has seen the US since 1953 invade and destroy Vietnam, Dominican Republic, Iraq, Granada, Panama, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Haiti, Yemen and others that don't immediately come to mind.

The Koreans called it the 'American War'.  The US bombed virtually every standing building in North Korea forcing the people to live in caves.  They came out at night to tend their gardens so they would not starve.

North Korea is not crazy.  They've faced down the unforgiving military boot of the US and are determined not to surrender.  Their constant bluster is really a strategy to get global attention to help intervene on their behalf to restrain Washington.

In a new report, published by the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, missile experts (including Ted Postol from MIT) write that North Korea does not have the rocket capability that Washington and the corporate media are claiming.  They state, "The Hwasong-14 does not currently constitute a nuclear threat to the lower 48 states of the United States. The flight tests on July 4 and 28 were a carefully choreographed deception by North Korea to create a false impression that the Hwasong-14 is a near-ICBM that poses a nuclear threat to the continental US. The Hwasong-14 tested on July 4 and 28 may not even be able to deliver a North Korean atomic bomb to Anchorage, Alaska."

War on the Korean peninsula would go global.  China has announced that if the US attacks North Korea it will defend Pyongyang.

The people of the world must speak out now loud and clear.  No war on the Korean peninsula.  Stop US war games and close the US military bases.  End the US military colonization of South Korea.

Do something today to help stop this madness please....


Friday, August 11, 2017

Waters: Interfering with the General Narrative

Exclusive interview with BDS activist Roger Waters (Pink Floyd) discussing fake news, US-Russia relations, war and Palestine.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Bluster and Blunder from Washington

I was interviewed on RT today.  Here is the video.

The US is preparing the American people for something - who knows what?

First-strike attack on North Korea?  Maybe a false flag operation to justify the US attack - that is historically our Modus Operandi.

Speak out now while we still can.  The crazies are pushing this hard.

Some years ago I heard of an organization called the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF).  They've been investigating the growing dominance of the US military by Christian fundamentalists who see the Battle of Armageddon as a good thing that would bring on the 'final days' and the return of Jesus Christ.

Newsweek reports:

    Trump Effect Inspires Radical Christians in Military

According to the report, the election of Donald Trump “has led to such a steep rise in fundamentalist Christian evangelizing and religious bigotry in the U.S. armed forces that the matter is reaching the level of a ‘national security threat.’”

More from the report on the dangerous Christian extremists currently serving in the U.S. military:

    Fundamentalist views are decidedly in the minority in the general population, but they have adherents in some of the U.S. military’s most powerful positions, especially in and around Washington, D.C., and in Colorado Springs, home of the U.S. Air Force Academy and the nation’s nuclear command center.

    The U.S. military has long been seeded with radical Christian fundamentalists—sometimes called Christian Dominionists or Christian Reconstructionists—who believe a “Warrior Jesus” has their backs while they fight against Islam. They believe they are establishing a “Kingdom of God” on earth, starting with the United States, and are predictably anti-LGBT and unfriendly to females among their ranks.

Call them Christian extremists, call them Christian fundamentalists, call them Christian Dominionists, or call them Christian Reconstructionists, the result is the same: a dangerous faction of religious extremists that act as a cancer within the U.S. military by placing their religious superstition above their duty to the nation, and their duty to the U.S. Constitution.

Bottom line: In the age of Trump, Christian extremists in the U.S. military now constitute a “national security threat.”

See more here

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Hyping the Threat

North Korea is sitting on a stockpile of minerals worth trillions

Embedded deep beneath the country's mountainous zones are some 200 varieties of minerals, including gold, iron, copper, zinc, magnesite, limestone, tungsten, and graphite, Quartz reports.

Some of these stockpiles are among the largest in the world, and North Korea, a tiny and cash-strapped nation, frequently uses them to bring in additional revenue — no matter the laws against doing so.

The total value of these minerals lies somewhere between $6 trillion and $10 trillion.

But the country is too poor to create the infrastructure needed to export the minerals — at least in large enough quantities to make a dent in its overall wealth. Still reliant on China, South Korea, and Russia for its financial and energy needs, North Korea has only made small deals with neighboring countries.

See the rest of the story here

The U.S. Has Destroyed Korea Before.....

We can't let this happen again....

Remembering - Resisting Nuclear War

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Saying the possession, upgrading and potential use of nuclear weapons was sinful, peacemakers gathered outside the White House on the feast of the Transfiguration and implored the U.S. government to empty its arsenals and embrace a world of peace.

“Nuclear weapons are immoral, illegal, anti-God, anti-life, anti-creation and have no right to exist,” Art Laffin of Washington’s Dorothy Day Catholic Worker community told the gathering Aug. 6, marking the 72nd anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan.

He said the feast of the Transfiguration invites the world to “say yes to the God of life, who commands us to love and not to kill, and no the forces of evil, death and destruction.”

Laffin urged the group to recall that the anniversary was a time of “remembering the horror, repenting the sin and reclaiming a future without nuclear weapons” during the one-hour vigil just after sunrise.

The group included members of Catholic movements working to end nuclear weapons. They had gathered to “apologize” for the Hiroshima bombing, and for the bombing three days later of the Japanese city of Nagasaki Aug 9, 1945, both of which culminated in the death and maiming of hundreds of thousands of people, the peacemakers said.

As they gathered, representatives of organizations such as the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns, Pax Christi USA and the Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach placed photos of the destruction and the Japanese victims of the bombing on the street in front of the presidential mansion, calling it “shrine of remembrance.”

Participants were invited to recommit their lives to “disarming and dismantling the machinery of mass destruction” and offered an apology to bombing survivors, known as Hibakusha.

Red and white roses were distributed to participants during the event. The red roses were said to symbolize the sacredness of life and the grief and suffered caused by war and the atomic bombing.

The white roses were said to symbolize hope and the commitment to work for a nonviolent world.
Laffin criticized the U.S. commitment to spend $1 trillion during the next three decades to modernize its nuclear arsenal. He said such spending is “a direct theft from the poor.”

“If the U.S. is to ever truly lead the way to real disarmament, it must first repent for the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Then and only then can the U.S. legitimately ask other nuclear nations to disarm,” he said.

Since the end of World War II, U.S. and political leaders have maintained that nuclear weapons are necessary and serve as a deterrent to potential attacks from other countries.

The peacemakers planned a second vigil Aug. 9 at the Pentagon to recall the anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki.

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Air Show Protest in Brunswick

Korea Trip Report

By Will Griffin from Veterans For Peace and also newest board member of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space.

Well done Will - great report!

Left Out News

  • Donbass News Agency reports that the US has begun constructing a maritime operations center at the Ochakiv Naval Base (just south of Mykolayiv Oblast) in southern Ukraine. Ochakiv is located close to Crimean peninsula and Ukrainian 73rd Naval Center of Special Operations is situated there. US Seabees held a groundbreaking ceremony for a maritime operations center on July 25. Beginning construction in Ukraine is "a significant accomplishment," said Lt. j.g. [junior grade] Jason McGee, officer in charge of Detachment Ukraine.  "Our ability to maximize European reassurance initiatives in Ukraine holds strategic importance, and will ultimately improve host nation defense capacity and infrastructure, strengthen relations and increase bilateral training capabilities." In addition to building the operations center, the Seabees will also build a boat maintenance facility and entry control points with perimeter fencing at Ochakov.
  •  The New York Times reports: After 147 years, Friedrich Engels is back in the city that made him famous. His resurrection is in Manchester, England where he conducted research. Since most Soviet-era statues were removed from their pedestals and destroyed after 1989 finding the statue was not easy. Artist Phil Collins traveled for about a year across Eastern Europe before finally finding his prize in an agricultural compound in a district that he said was once named after Engels in the Poltava region of eastern Ukraine. The statue, 12 feet tall, had been cut in half and dumped. But on May 15, the halves were hauled onto a truck and sent on their way to Manchester. In Manchester, Engels is still revered. Alexandra Prodan, a 27-year-old medical secretary from Romania who has been living in Manchester for eight years, said the problem with communism was not with Marxist theory per se. “In practice,” Ms. Prodan said, communist regimes “became totalitarian and oppressive.”  Ms. Prodan added: “Even in the countries where people were oppressed, people were looking out for each other in a way. There was still a feeling of togetherness against the regime. This is basically what Engels wrote about. You know, it’s about the people coming together.” 
  • On June 30, a federal appeals court upheld a lower court ruling that severs the Penobscot Indian Nation in Maine from the waters of the Penobscot River, a ruling that Penobscot Indian Nation Chief Kirk Francis says is reminiscent of federal termination policy—or worse. “The river and our relationship to it and the 200 islands [that form the reservation] are the core of our cultural identity. If our ability to protect the river is taken away, we lose a big part of who we are,” Francis told ICMN. For decades, the tribe has been monitoring the quality of the water in the river and working with state and federal agencies, power companies and conservation groups to stop the industrial and municipal pollution that has led to unacceptably high levels of mercury, dioxin, PCPs and other toxins in the river.
  • New York City Catholic Worker activist Felton Davis sent word this morning from Washington DC where he is holding a one-man protest vigil at NASA HQ: 
    On Monday I began keeping vigil and passing out leaflets at NASA headquarters.  Employees and passersby were friendly, but after a half hour the security guards came out and told me I could not stand under the canopy because the whole area there is NASA property.  So I was chased out from under the canopy and had to stand in the rain, and the security told me that since I was demonstrating I could not even stand on the adjacent sidewalk without a permit.  At 10 am the DC police arrived and pulled up with lights flashing, and the officer went inside to consult with security.  Then they left and came back at about 11 am, and the security people came out to talk with them.  Still no arrest.  In New York City a person can pass out leaflets almost anywhere without a permit, but I don't know if that is true in DC.  I believe that NASA -- unlike the White House -- has enjoyed the illusion of being above all controversy, and finds it hard to tolerate even one person who objects to anything they do. Today is the second day of this vigil, and anyone who joins me should know that they are risking arrest.  Of course the real crime is that NASA was allowed first to launch space probes with plutonium, and now to crash one of them into the planet Saturn in September, and on top of that they want the Department of Energy to resume production of PU-238 for future space probes. See the most recent newsletter of "Keep Space for Peace," with Karl Grossman's article about Cassini.

Monday, August 07, 2017

Goal: Total Economic Control of the World

Former FBI counter-terrorism expert: "The CIA created ISIS"

“We created ISIS. I mean ISIS is no less than the people up in Islamburg, no less then than Gülen. It is a CIA-creation. John McCain, for heavens sake, was over there with the ISIS officials.

We created them. They came from Al-Nusra Front, the Syrian Liberation Front. These two organizations combined and they morphed into ISIS. It’s our creation!

We created them and we still direct them! When ISIS warriors are injured in battle, where are they transported? They’re transported, for heavens sake, to Israel! They’re treated by Israelis in Israeli hospitals and brought back to battle!”

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Sanctions: The Tools of Mr. Big

The US
are at war
with the world
grabbing all they can
making big $$$....

the supreme
of America

All vassals
must hand over
total control
to the empire

their land,
all resources
Mr. Big's pocket

any peasant
dares to refuse
the demands from
the higher lords

will be slapped
on them
wishing to
local control
to the benefit
of the people....
are told
not acceptable!

Those that take
bold steps
to defy
the corporate empire
will be
punished or perished.

So goes our past
our present

Feudalism has
this time
a car
a TV
credit card
and a harder

that the peasants
they could slip
into a middle class

Mr. Big always
seeks vengeance.


Maine Peace Walk in Bath

 Art by Russell Wray (Hancock, Maine)

The sixth Maine Peace Walk for Conversion, Community and Climate will be from October 13-21.  This year the walk will largely be centered in Bath and concentrate on the serious need to convert Bath Iron Works (BIW) to peaceful and sustainable production.

As the planet heats up, the oceans warm and acidify, and Arctic ice melts we witness the release of methane that only accelerates the global warming problem.  The response of the government has been to unleash geoengineering of the sky which further exacerbates the problem.  In addition the US military has the largest carbon footprint of any organization 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.

If we have any hopes to secure a future for the coming generations then we must immediately begin the conversion of the military industrial complex to environmentally appropriate renewable energy systems.  What could be more important at this moment?

Studies at UMASS-Amherst Economics Department have long shown that producing commuter rails systems, offshore wind turbines, solar and tidal power would in fact create more jobs at facilities like BIW than we currently get building warships.  Spending on education, health care, and other social programs also creates more jobs than does military production.

But if the environmental and peace movements don’t make the demand for conversion it will never happen and our children will be left with the devastating consequences.

While in Bath during October 13-21 we will hold morning and afternoon vigils at BIW to bring the conversion message directly to General Dynamics (owner of BIW) executives and shipyard workers.  During each day we will go door-to-door across Bath to drop flyers at every house and business in the community.  During the evenings a public program, film and music will be featured.

We will have a special guest during the peace walk from Jeju Island, South Korea where a Navy base has been built in a 500-year old fishing and farming village that worships their relationship to nature.  Gangjeong village was torn apart to construct the Navy base but for the past 10 years daily non-violent protests have been held and they continue to this day.  The warships built in Bath are already porting at this new Navy base.

We welcome everyone to join our peace walk for an hour, a day, or more and to help in any way you can.  Accepting our present condition of endless war for fossil fuels is a dead end street that if not reversed will lead to our collective demise. We must have a conversion that begins with our hearts and extends to the timely task of totally reorienting our national production system.

Maine Peace Walk is sponsored by:  Citizens Opposing Active Sonar Threats (COAST); Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space; Maine Natural Guard; Maine Veterans For Peace; Maine War Tax Resistance Resource Center; Peace Action Maine; PeaceWorks; Veterans For Peace, Smedley Butler Chapter (Boston area); Waging Peace Maine

(Groups are invited to co-sponsor and asked to make a donation toward the walk)

Contact:    207-443-9502

* See this video song by Jeju Island activist Joyakgol. It’s a new song about all the trash coming from US warships porting at the Jeju naval base, THAAD, overdevelopment, nukes and etc.

Sunday Song

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Going Public - Now is the Time for Peaceniks to Raise Sand

I spent much of the day in Brunswick at the 13th annual Peace Fair put on by our local PeaceWorks group.  My table is the one on the other side of the red 'Bring Our War $$$ Home' banner in the photo.  Many different organizations in the community had tables in three different tents and there was wonderful music throughout much of the day.

The fair was held on the Brunswick town green along the main street through town so lots of cars and people walking by saw the two banners I hung by our table. I was joined at my table (which was right next to the Maine Veterans for Peace table) by friends Regis Tremblay and John Morris.

Our primary goal was to hand out flyers about the upcoming Navy Blue Angels airshow protest that I am organizing on Saturday, August 26 from 9:00 am to noon at the former Navy base in Brunswick.  I was also talking to people about our on-going campaign to convert Bath Iron Works (BIW) to appropriate sustainable technology development - commuter rail, offshore wind turbines, solar, and tidal power for example.  I kept telling people that our 'real problem' is climate change and that if we hope to give the future generations a real shot at a life then we have to convert the war machine (which has the largest carbon bootprint on the planet) immediately!

I also hung the yellow Jeju Island, South Korea 'No Navy Base' flag on the front side of our table and since it is in Korean lots of people would stare at it which opened up the conversation about where the warships built at BIW go when they leave Maine.

Additionally I led a discussion group about BIW conversion and met three women from nearby Harpswell that are very interested in the subject and want to come to the trial of the Aegis 9 that will likely be held in late September.  (We were arrested on April 1 at a destroyer 'christening' for trespassing on BIW property.  See the video here)

So it was a good day and always fun to see many old friends.  Being public at this dangerous moment with colorful peace banners and such helps remind the public that not everyone is going along with the pure insanity coming out of Washington and the Pentagon as they talk quite openly about launching a 'decapitation' strike on North Korea or trying to overthrow the government of Venezuela.

The arrogance of the US is just unacceptable and the American people - especially those who claim to be peaceniks - need to get off their collective arses before it is too late!

Friday, August 04, 2017

It's a No Brainer.....

The Yes Men are at it again doing their political spoof at a DNC sponsored event - where they bring the real issues forward and expose the DNC's subservience to corporate interests.......

Gotta love it!

Pilger: U.S. Pushes Toward the Final War

By John Pilger

The US submarine captain says, “We’ve all got to die one day, some sooner and some later. The trouble always has been that you’re never ready, because you don’t know when it’s coming. Well, now we do know and there’s nothing to be done about it.”

He says he will be dead by September. It will take about a week to die, though no one can be sure. Animals live the longest.

The war was over in a month. The United States, Russia and China were the protagonists. It is not clear if it was started by accident or mistake. There was no victor. The northern hemisphere is contaminated and lifeless now.

A curtain of radioactivity is moving south towards Australia and New Zealand, southern Africa and South America. By September, the last cities, towns and villages will succumb. As in the north, most buildings will remain untouched, some illuminated by the last flickers of electric light.
                            This is the way the world ends
                            Not with a bang but a whimper   
These lines from T.S. Eliot’s poem The Hollow Men appear at the beginning of Nevil Shute’s novel On the Beach, which left me close to tears. The endorsements on the cover said the same.

Published in 1957 at the height of the Cold War when too many writers were silent or cowed, it is a masterpiece. At first the language suggests a genteel relic; yet nothing I have read on nuclear war is as unyielding in its warning. No book is more urgent.

Some readers will remember the black and white Hollywood film starring Gregory Peck as the US Navy commander who takes his submarine to Australia to await the silent, formless spectre descending on the last of the living world.

I read On the Beach for the first time the other day, finishing it as the US Congress passed a law to wage economic war on Russia, the world’s second most lethal nuclear power.  There was no justification for this insane vote, except the promise of plunder.

The “sanctions” are aimed at Europe, too, mainly Germany, which depends on Russian natural gas and on European companies that do legitimate business with Russia. In what passed for debate on Capitol Hill, the more garrulous senators left no doubt that the embargo was designed to force Europe to import expensive American gas.

Their main aim seems to be war – real war. No provocation as extreme can suggest anything else. They seem to crave it, even though Americans have little idea what war is. The Civil War of 1861-5 was the last on their mainland. War is what the United States does to others.

The only nation to have used nuclear weapons against human beings, they have since destroyed scores of governments, many of them democracies, and laid to waste whole societies – the million deaths in Iraq were a fraction of the carnage in Indo-China, which President Reagan called “a noble cause” and President Obama revised as the tragedy of an “exceptional people”He was not referring to the Vietnamese.

Filming last year at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, I overheard a National Parks Service guide lecturing a school party of young teenagers. “Listen up,” he said. “We lost 58,000 young soldiers in Vietnam, and they died defending your freedom.”

At a stroke, the truth was inverted. No freedom was defended. Freedom was destroyed. A peasant country was invaded and millions of its people were killed, maimed, dispossessed, poisoned; 60,000 of the invaders took their own lives. Listen up, indeed.

A lobotomy is performed on each generation. Facts are removed. History is excised and replaced by what Time magazine calls “an eternal present”. Harold Pinter described this as "manipulation of power worldwide, while masquerading as a force for universal good, a brilliant, even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis [which meant] that it never happened. Nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn't happening. It didn't matter. It was of no interest."

Those who call themselves liberals or tendentiously “the left” are eager participants in this manipulation, and its brainwashing, which today revert to one name: Trump.

Trump is mad, a fascist, a dupe of Russia. He is also a gift for “liberal brains pickled in the formaldehyde of identity politics”, wrote Luciana Bohne memorably. The obsession with Trump the man -- not Trump as a symptom and caricature of an enduring system – beckons great danger for all of us.

While they pursue their fossilized anti-Russia agendas, narcissistic media such as the Washington Post, the BBC and the Guardian suppress the essence of the most important political story of our time as they warmonger on a scale I cannot remember in my lifetime.

On 3 August, in contrast to the acreage the Guardian has given to drivel that the Russians conspired with Trump (reminiscent of the far-right smearing of John Kennedy as a “Soviet agent”), the paper buried, on page 16, news that the President of the United States was forced to sign a Congressional bill declaring economic war on Russia.

Unlike every other Trump signing, this was conducted in virtual secrecy and attached with a caveat from Trump himself that it was “clearly unconstitutional”.

A coup against the man in the White House is under way. This is not because he is an odious human being, but because he has consistently made clear he does not want war with Russia.

This glimpse of sanity, or simple pragmatism, is anathema to the “national security” managers who guard a system based on war, surveillance, armaments, threats and extreme capitalism. Martin Luther King called them “the greatest purveyors of violence in the world today”.

They have encircled Russia and China with missiles and a nuclear arsenal. They have used neo-Nazis to instal an unstable, aggressive regime on Russia’s “borderland” – the way through which Hitler invaded, causing the deaths of 27 million people.  Their goal is to dismember the modern Russian Federation.

In response, “partnership” is a word used incessantly by Vladimir Putin -- anything, it seems, that might halt an evangelical drive to war in the United States. Incredulity in Russia may have now turned to fear and perhaps a certain resolution. The Russians almost certainly have war-gamed nuclear counter strikes. Air-raid drills are not uncommon. Their history tells them to get ready.

The threat is simultaneous. Russia is first, China is next. The US has just completed a huge military exercise with Australia known as Talisman Sabre. They rehearsed a blockade of the Malacca Straits and the South China Sea, through which pass China’s economic lifelines.

The admiral commanding the US Pacific fleet said that, “if required”, he would nuke China. That he would say such a thing publicly in the current perfidious atmosphere begins to make fact of Nevil Shute’s fiction.

None of this is considered news. No connection is made as the bloodfest of Passchendaele a century ago is remembered. Honest reporting is no longer welcome in much of the media. Windbags, known as pundits, dominate: editors are infotainment or party line managers. Where there was once sub-editing, there is the liberation of axe-grinding clichés. Those journalists who do not comply are defenestrated.

The urgency has plenty of precedents. In my film, The Coming War on China, John Bordne, a member of a US Air Force missile combat crew based in Okinawa, Japan, describes how in 1962 – during the Cuban missile crisis – he and his colleagues were “told to launch all the missiles” from their silos.

Nuclear armed, the missiles were aimed at both China and Russia. A junior officer questioned this, and the order was eventually rescinded – but only after they were issued with service revolvers and ordered to shoot at others in a missile crew if they did not “stand down”.

At the height of the Cold War, the anti-communist hysteria in the United States was such that US officials who were on official business in China were accused of treason and sacked. In 1957 – the year Shute wrote On the Beach – no official in the State Department could speak the language of the world’s most populous nation. Mandarin speakers were purged under strictures now echoed in the Congressional bill that has just passed, aimed at Russia.

The bill was bipartisan. There is no fundamental difference between Democrats and Republicans. The terms “left” and “right” are meaningless.  Most of America’s modern wars were started not by conservatives, but by liberal Democrats.

When Obama left office, he presided over a record seven wars, including America’s longest war and an unprecedented campaign of extrajudicial killings – murder – by drones.

In his last year, according to a Council on Foreign Relations study, Obama, the “reluctant liberal warrior”, dropped 26,171 bombs – three bombs every hour, 24 hours a day.  Having pledged to help “rid the world” of nuclear weapons, the Nobel Peace Laureate built more nuclear warheads than any president since the Cold War.

Trump is a wimp by comparison.  It was Obama – with his secretary of state Hillary Clinton at his side – who destroyed Libya as a modern state and launched the human stampede to Europe. At home, immigration groups knew him as the “deporter-in-chief”.

One of Obama’s last acts as president was to sign a bill that handed a record $618 billion to the Pentagon, reflecting the soaring ascendancy of fascist militarism in the governance of the United States. Trump has endorsed this.

Buried in the detail was the establishment of a “Center for Information Analysis and Response”. This is a ministry of truth. It is tasked with providing an “official narrative of facts” that will prepare us for the real possibility of nuclear war – if we allow it.

~ John Pilger is an Australian-British award winning journalist based in London. Pilger’s Web site is: His new film, “The Coming War on China,” is available in the U.S. from