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....

My Photo
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

Friday, September 29, 2017

Protesting Trump's Navy Secretary Visit to BIW

Four of us were at Bath Iron Works this morning for 90 minutes while Trump's Navy Secretary Richard Spencer visited the shipyard along with Maine's Congressional delegation.

Jason Rawn, Don Kimball, Peter Morgan and I held banners and signs. About 11:30 am a police escort (flashing lights and sirens) sped past us with the Navy Secretary and the Maine politicians so we were certainly seen by them.

We counted the positives (waves, honks, peace signs) and negatives (fingers) from cars going by while there and it came out to 22 on the plus side and only two on the negative.  So this un-scientific poll indicates that we are wearing them down in Bath!

The Navy Secretary at the podium with all four of Maine's Congressional delegation in attendance this morning at BIW.  From the left to right are Rep. Chellie Pingree, Rep. Bruce Poliquin, Sen. Susan Collins, and Sen. Angus King. Photo by KevinMillerPPH

Our Maine Congressional delegation (made up of Republicans, Democrats and an Independent) always dutifully come to every major event at BIW such as today and the 'Christenings' that happen a couple of times per year.  They work overtime to get more $$$$ to build more offensive warships at the shipyard.

Over the years we've tried to talk with the delegation about conversion of the shipyard to sustainable production that would help deal with the growing harsh reality of climate change but they have shown not a bit of interest.  Rep. Pingree and Sen. King talk a great game about climate change but when it comes to transforming the American institution (the Pentagon) with the largest carbon boot print on the  planet they turn away.

It would be good if they all watched the C-SPAN archive coverage of the 1994 Labor Day rally at BIW that was attended by the Maine Congressional delegation at that time who called for the conversion of the shipyard to civilian production.  In those days the 'conversion' word easily poured out of the mouths of politicians, labor leaders and even BIW executives.

My, how things do change......


Invitation to Stand for Peace

Thursday, September 28, 2017

See Jeju Island Through the Eyes of Shaman Artist

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Power Concedes Nothing Without a Demand

Thanks to Will Griffin for this video of my talk at the War and Environment conference at American University last weekend in Washington DC.

In the video I reference a 1994 Labor Day rally at Bath Iron Works in Maine where the speakers called for the conversion of the shipyard to civilian production.  You can watch that video here

Learn more about #NoWar2017 conference at:

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

U.S. & Kiev Keep War Going Against Donbass

The shelling in eastern Ukraine (Donbass) continues from the US-backed puppet government in Kiev. 

Since the 2014 coup in Kiev the US installed a oligarchic regime that is waging war on its own people who live near the Russian border.

The excuse is that Russia has 'invaded' the Donbass but the truth is that miners, teachers, musicians, electricians and other eastern Ukrainian citizens took up arms to defend themselves against the brutal attacks by the US-sponsored regime.

The US has a base in western Ukraine where Special Forces soldiers come from Fort Carson, Colorado and train Ukraine's newly formed National Guard (made up mostly of Nazi death squads).  After 'training' these units are sent to eastern Ukraine to shell civilian apartments and houses, shops, schools, day care centers, airports and rail stations, churches and more.  Many thousands have been killed by the Washington backed Poroshenko regime in Kiev.

The Russians have sent arms to the Donbass to help the people defend themselves but no one has yet provided any pictures of the highly-touted Russian 'invasion' of Ukraine.

The white trucks coming over the Russian border into Ukraine have been carrying humanitarian aid for the besieged people in the Donbass who had their pensions cut off by Kiev under the direction of the US that runs the show there these days.  The people face extermination by hunger, medical neglect and by military attack.

The US wishes to create chaos on the Russian border and uses the situation to excuse further Pentagon and NATO operations there.  The US goal is regime change in Moscow and a return to the days when Boris Yeltsin was a CIA puppet.


Yes - Take Action and Survive

Eleven countries are planting a wall of trees from east to west across Africa, just under the southern edge of the Sahara desert.

The goal is to fight the effects of climate change by reversing desertification.

Home and Back to Work

  • I took an Amtrak train yesterday from Baltimore to Boston arriving there at 10:00 pm.  Then it was a two-hour bus ride to Portland, Maine. MB picked me up in Portland so we got back to Bath just before 1:00 am.   A long day and my ears were ringing from the travel noise.

  • It was a good trip to Washington - the conference on War and the Environment broke new ground for the peace movement and my talk seemed to have gone over well.  Once I get the video I'll post it here.  On the way home on the train I wrote an Op-Ed for our local paper that is due the end of this week.

  • My visit with two cousins from the Gagnon side of my family after the conference was really lovely and we went to the place where my father had a chicken farm back in the early 1950s. That was quite special for me to see this place - I'd never been there before.  It was sold before I was born.

  • The photo above is from Gangjeong village on Jeju Island, South Korea (standing in front of the new Navy base gate) where they know something about how US bases severely disrupt the life of local farming communities.  The forced US Army deployment of six THAAD 'missile defense' units into the melon farming area of Seongju is a major tragedy for the local people and is already provoking China and Russia to step up their counter-reaction to this destabilizing system.

  • During our Keep Space for Peace Week there will be daily protests in the small villages around the new THAAD deployment site and the folks in Gangjeong village will also hold daily protests against THAAD in solidarity with the folks in the Seongju area.

  • Also today I added a half-dozen more local events to our list during space week (October 7-14) in places like California, Wisconsin, Washington DC and India.  The list keeps inching forward and it is exciting to imagine people around the globe symbolically holding hands and declaring their opposition to the wasteful, provocative and dangerous Pentagon move to militarize and weaponize space.


Monday, September 25, 2017

We Need More of This

I love this video.

We don't have to let the corporate elite divide us....we can reach out and listen to one another.  We don't have to agree on everything but there is no shame in listening to each other.

If you really believe in peace and love then listening is a must.

Don't follow those who say we can't have dialogue.

Congrats to those Trump supporters who shared their stage with BLM.  That took courage and good will.

We need more of this kind of politics today - more than ever.


Help Puerto Rico

Donald Trump spent the weekend further pitting American against American over the issue of football players taking a knee during the national anthem as they used their First Amendment right to express concern about police brutality.

Is it possible that Trump used the NFL controversy in order to distract attention away from the massive hurricane damage in Puerto Rico?

Two reasons come to mind why Trump would do this - first, he does not want us to talk about the present effects of growing storms as oceans warm due to human impacts on the environment.  Climate change is real and Trump, we know, does not want us to talk about it.

Secondly, the cost to help Puerto Rico and its 3.4 million citizens recover from this hurricane (Add to that the damage in the US territory of the Virgin Islands) will be massive - who knows how much?  Where will those funds come from right after Trump and the Congress increased military spending by more than $70 billion?  The nation is already in colossal debt - printing funny money just to stay afloat.

Trump is a master at using Twitter to shape debate - and when you focus attention on one particular issue then something else important does not get talked about.

The top of the fold in the Washington Post newspaper today on page one was the NFL story with a large photo of the hometown Redskins football players linked arm and arm during the anthem.  A smaller story about hurricane damage was below the fold with the words 'Puerto Rico' in the sub-headline in even smaller print.

I'm not saying the NFL protests are not important - I'm saying Trump is manipulating them in order to shift our attention from programs and policies to loot the federal treasury on behalf of his corporate buddies and to avoid crucial subjects like global warming.

The medium is the message.  Divide and conquer is the strategy.  We should all wake up and smell the coffee.


Sunday, September 24, 2017

Conversion Means Survival for Future Generations

Maine Peace Walk October 13-21. Come for a day or more.

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.

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 Green Independent Party; 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; Waldo County Peace & Justice 

See full schedule of events at Maine VFP website here

Sunday Song

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Call Trump 'Rockets Man'


Friday, September 22, 2017

Keep Space for Peace Week

Bombs are U.S.

Heading to DC

  • I am sitting in the Boston South Station waiting for a train to Washington DC.  I am going there to attend and speak at a peace conference being held at American University over the weekend.  The conference will connect the US's endless war program and the Pentagon's #1 (of any institution on the planet) carbon boot print.  See more on the conference here

I'll be talking about conversion of the war machine to sustainable production that helps us even a bit deal with the reality of climate change.  I'll speak about our efforts in Bath, Maine to bring the conversion message to our community. I can assure you that people in our community are talking about our campaign - some obviously not pleased with our steady efforts to keep the conversion message in front of the local citizens.  The October 13-21 Maine Peace Walk will increase the visibility of this important conversion message even more.

  • While in DC I will be staying as usual at the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker House.  Then on Sunday I'll make my way to the Baltimore area and spend the night with my cousin.  On Monday another cousin will take us to the place where my father had a chicken and turkey farm before I was born.  At that time he was a back-to-nature kind of guy on his farm (didn't even have electricity) and then he met and married my mom.  He put in electricity and fixed up the place but she was a city slicker and didn't like the farm life.  She got him to sell his beloved farm and they moved to Florida.  After that he was broken hearted and listless.  When I was two years old he came home one day and said he wanted to go to Georgia and pick peaches so mom threw him out.  That was the end of my relationship with my father - everyone that knew him said he was a quiet and good man, including my mom's own sister.

I grew up not knowing anything about my dad's side of the family so my connection to my cousins on the Gagnon side have been developing only in recent years.  I am very excited to see the old farm. The circle of healing continues......

Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Killing of History

Anti-war protest outside Travis AFB, California during the Vietnam War.  Travis was an airlift base for the war carrying fresh troops to Vietnam and body bags on the planes return home.

By John Pilger 

One of the most hyped “events” of American television, The Vietnam War, has started on the PBS network. The directors are Ken Burns and Lynn Novick.  Acclaimed for his documentaries on the Civil War, the Great Depression and the history of jazz, Burns says of his Vietnam films, “They will inspire our country to begin to talk and think about the Vietnam war in an entirely new way”.

In a society often bereft of historical memory and in thrall to the propaganda of its “exceptionalism”, Burns’ “entirely new” Vietnam war is presented as “epic, historic work”. Its lavish advertising campaign promotes its biggest backer, Bank of America, which in 1971 was burned down by students in Santa Barbara, California, as a symbol of the hated war in Vietnam.

Burns says he is grateful to “the entire Bank of America family” which “has long supported our country’s veterans”.  Bank of America was a corporate prop to an invasion that killed perhaps as many as four million Vietnamese and ravaged and poisoned a once bountiful land. More than 58,000 American soldiers were killed, and around the same number are estimated to have taken their own lives.

I watched the first episode in New York. It leaves you in no doubt of its intentions right from the start. The narrator says the war “was begun in good faith by decent people out of fateful misunderstandings, American overconfidence and Cold War misunderstandings”.

The dishonesty of this statement is not surprising. The cynical fabrication of “false flags” that led to the invasion of Vietnam is a matter of record – the Gulf of Tonkin “incident” in 1964, which Burns promotes as true, was just one. The lies litter a multitude of official documents, notably the Pentagon Papers, which the great whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg released in 1971.

There was no good faith. The faith was rotten and cancerous. For me – as it must be for many Americans -- it is difficult to watch the film’s jumble of “red peril” maps, unexplained interviewees, ineptly cut archive and maudlin American battlefield sequences.

In the series’ press release in Britain -- the BBC will show it -- there is no mention of Vietnamese dead, only Americans. “We are all searching for some meaning in this terrible tragedy,” Novick is quoted as saying.  How very post-modern.

All this will be familiar to those who have observed how the American media and popular culture behemoth has revised and served up the great crime of the second half of the twentieth century: from The Green Berets and The Deer Hunter to Rambo and, in so doing, has legitimised subsequent wars of aggression.  The revisionism never stops and the blood never dries. The invader is pitied and purged of guilt, while “searching for some meaning in this terrible tragedy”. Cue Bob Dylan: “Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?”

I thought about the “decency” and “good faith” when recalling my own first experiences as a young reporter in Vietnam: watching hypnotically as the skin fell off Napalmed peasant children like old parchment, and the ladders of bombs that left trees petrified and festooned with human flesh. General William Westmoreland, the American commander, referred to people as “termites”.

In the early 1970s, I went to Quang Ngai province, where in the village of My Lai, between 347 and 500 men, women and infants were murdered by American troops (Burns prefers “killings”). At the time, this was presented as an aberration: an “American tragedy” (Newsweek).  In this one province, it was estimated that 50,000 people had been slaughtered during the era of American “free fire zones”. Mass homicide. This was not news.

To the north, in Quang Tri province, more bombs were dropped than in all of Germany during the Second World War. Since 1975, unexploded ordnance has caused more than 40,000 deaths in mostly “South Vietnam”, the country America claimed to “save” and, with France, conceived as a singularly imperial ruse.

The “meaning” of the Vietnam war is no different from the meaning of the genocidal campaign against the Native Americans, the colonial massacres in the Philippines, the atomic bombings of Japan, the levelling of every city in North Korea. The aim was described by Colonel Edward Lansdale, the famous CIA man on whom Graham Greene based his central character in The Quiet American.

Quoting Robert Taber’s The War of the Flea, Lansdale said, “There is only one means of defeating an insurgent people who will not surrender, and that is extermination. There is only one way to control a territory that harbours resistance, and that is to turn it into a desert.”

Nothing has changed. When Donald Trump addressed the United Nations on 19 September – a body established to spare humanity the “scourge of war” – he declared he was “ready, willing and able” to “totally destroy” North Korea and its 25 million people. His audience gasped, but Trump’s language was not unusual.

His rival for the presidency, Hillary Clinton, had boasted she was prepared to “totally obliterate” Iran, a nation of more than 80 million people. This is the American Way; only the euphemisms are missing now.

Returning to the US, I am struck by the silence and the absence of an opposition – on the streets, in journalism and the arts, as if dissent once tolerated in the “mainstream” has regressed to a dissidence: a metaphoric underground.

There is plenty of sound and fury at Trump the odious one, the “fascist”, but almost none at Trump the symptom and caricature of an enduring system of conquest and extremism.

Where are the ghosts of the great anti-war demonstrations that took over Washington in the 1970s? Where is the equivalent of the Freeze Movement that filled the streets of Manhattan in the 1980s, demanding that President Reagan withdraw battlefield nuclear weapons from Europe?

The sheer energy and moral persistence of these great movements largely succeeded; by 1987 Reagan had negotiated with Mikhail Gorbachev an Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) that effectively ended the Cold War.

Today, according to secret Nato documents obtained by the German newspaper, Suddeutsche Zetung, this vital treaty is likely to be abandoned as “nuclear targeting planning is increased”. The German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel has warned against “repeating the worst mistakes of the Cold War … All the good treaties on disarmament and arms control from Gorbachev and Reagan are in acute peril. Europe is threatened again with becoming a military training ground for nuclear weapons. We must raise our voice against this.”

But not in America. The thousands who turned out for Senator Bernie Sanders’ “revolution” in last year’s presidential campaign are collectively mute on these dangers. That most of America’s violence across the world has been perpetrated not by Republicans, or mutants like Trump, but by liberal Democrats, remains a taboo.

Barack Obama provided the apotheosis, with seven simultaneous wars, a presidential record, including the destruction of Libya as a modern state. Obama’s overthrow of Ukraine’s elected government has had the desired effect: the massing of American-led Nato forces on Russia’s western borderland through which the Nazis invaded in 1941.

Obama’s “pivot to Asia” in 2011 signalled the transfer of the majority of America’s naval and air forces to Asia and the Pacific for no purpose other than to confront and provoke China. The Nobel Peace Laureate’s worldwide campaign of assassinations is arguably the most extensive campaign of terrorism since 9/11.

What is known in the US as “the left” has effectively allied with the darkest recesses of institutional power, notably the Pentagon and the CIA, to see off a peace deal between Trump and Vladimir Putin and to reinstate Russia as an enemy, on the basis of no evidence of its alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election.

The true scandal is the insidious assumption of power by sinister war-making vested interests for which no American voted.  The rapid ascendancy of the Pentagon and the surveillance agencies under Obama represented an historic shift of power in Washington. Daniel Ellsberg rightly called it a coup. The three generals running Trump are its witness.

All of this fails to penetrate those “liberal brains pickled in the formaldehyde of identity politics”, as Luciana Bohne noted memorably. Commodified and market-tested, “diversity” is the new liberal brand, not the class people serve regardless of their gender and skin colour: not the responsibility of all to stop a barbaric war to end all wars.

“How did it fucking come to this?” says Michael Moore in his Broadway show, Terms of My Surrender, a vaudeville for the disaffected set against a backdrop of Trump as Big Brother.

I admired Moore’s film, Roger & Me, about the economic and social devastation of his hometown of Flint, Michigan, and Sicko, his investigation into the corruption of healthcare in America.

The night I saw his show, his happy-clappy audience cheered his reassurance that “we are the majority!” and calls to “impeach Trump, a liar and a fascist!” His message seemed to be that had you held your nose and voted for Hillary Clinton, life would be predictable again.

He may be right. Instead of merely abusing the world, as Trump does, the Great Obliterator might have attacked Iran and lobbed missiles at Putin, whom she likened to Hitler: a particular profanity given the 27 million Russians who died in Hitler’s invasion.

“Listen up,” said Moore, “putting aside what our governments do, Americans are really loved by the world!”

There was a silence.

~ - the films and journalism of John Pilger

Peace Movement Should be Broadening

  • As I was sending around Keep Space for Peace Week emails to the various Global Network lists today it was interesting that emails to our own address landed in our spam filter.  Increasingly email service providers are making it really hard to get emails through to their customers unless you pay for an email delivery service.  What a racket.....

  • I had an email from a fellow peace organizer in Finland today.  I found it interesting the way she described how local people have become so fearful due to corporate media propaganda.  In the end she says they've concluded that they must be on the street more often.  Yes, it must be considered that as the corporate crackdown widens on us that even the Internet could be shut down and our primary communication vehicle would be gone overnight.  Think about that one.  How many groups still have a street address mailing list for their members?  Probably not many. 

  • Here is Kerstin Tuomala from Finland:

We used to celebrate October 24th as the UN Day of Disarmament. So this year we will combine this with the Keep Space for Peace Week and it is possible that we focus on the tensions and how to reach detente in our near environment – the Arctics and round the Baltic sea.

In our group the history and the situation on the Korea Peninsula was quite unknown, so we will study it during the year. We have decided to study half an hour in the beginning of each meeting. We studied for instance the massacre in Odessa and the situation of friends and relatives to the victims of the massacre in April, and on May 2nd we had a manifestation were we joined the Solidarity Campaigne, signed the petition and sent it to the president of Ukraina. In this world were disinformation is called truth, we must study all the time. Global Network's material is a good support for this purpose.

Right now our group has decided to support the Swedish peace activists as they resist the Aurora NATO military exercises. The No to NATO Movement collect names on a petition against the NATO installations in Sweden. So we went to the border town of Haparanda and presented the petition for people in the street. It is a job that has to be done as many of the persons we met were afraid of Putin and welcomed NATO. Some hesitated but were easily convinced, when we discussed with them. Of course other persons too, whom the daily mainstream media’s propaganda had not influenced, [signed] as they follow more seriously what is going on in the world. 

Our conclusion was that we must be more on the street, collect names and discuss – also in Finland. All my regards to You all!

  • Another friend, Andre Brochu, who lives in Sweden also wrote today about the NATO war games there.  Andre grew up in Massachusetts (with family in Maine) and resisted the Vietnam War draft by going to Sweden.  He organized the speaking tour by Dave Webb and I last year when we visited several cities in Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark.
 Last Saturday we had the Stop Aurora War Exercises demonstration in Gothenburg.  An estimated 3,500 participated. A good showing and another time, not today, I shall write you my analysis of how it was organized.  We are at a juncture when the peace movement should be broadening.  

  • The banner above was delivered to our house a few nights ago by Natasha Mayers, one of the leaders of the group Artist Rapid Response Team (ARRT) that meets monthly to make banners for various protest movements across Maine.  They made this one for our up-coming Maine Peace Walk.  Getting artists involved is an important way to widen our circles.  Many in the public don't read much about politics so banners like these can go a long way in reaching out to folks.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Pentagon's Black Hole

Decline of the Petrodollar

Venezuela, the country with the largest oil reserves in the world, has begun to report its crude oil prices in the Chinese Yuan, abandoning the oil market norm of pricing in the U.S dollar.

The reason the U.S. has lately been attempting to overthrow the current government is Venezuela is basically because they use the profits from their oil to benefit the poor across their nation.  To Washington this is a bad example and must be crushed.

Man Self-Immolates Over THAAD Issue

The Korea Herald reports:

South Korean activist Jo Young-sam died one day after setting himself on fire Tuesday in Mapo-gu, Seoul, to protest against the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system.

“THAAD should go and peace shall come. (The peace initiatives of) the Moon Administration should prevail,” 58-year-old Jo had said. He also left a four-page statement addressed to President Moon Jae-in, in which he denounced the THAAD [missile offense] deployment and called for peace initiatives regarding North Korea.

Jo had suffered third-degree burns all over his body and had been rushed to a hospital for treatment. However, he died Wednesday morning.

Jo visited North Korea in 1995 upon a formal invitation from Lee In-mo, who had been repatriated to the North. After his visit to North Korea, Jo took refuge in Germany for 18 years. He finally returned to South Korea in 2012 and was sentenced to one year in prison for his unauthorized visit to the North.

After serving his prison sentence, he moved to Miryang, South Gyeongsang Province, and had recently been engaging in an anti-THAAD campaign.

At a joint press conference early Wednesday, activist groups said the Moon administration and the US should be held accountable for his death.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Why is Washington never sanctioned?

Article 2, paragraph 4 of the UN charter – “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”

How can the United Nations, and any of its members, sanction North Korea and then allow the world leader in militarism, empire and chaos creation, the United States, to do what it does?

Why is Washington never sanctioned?  Why is Washington never held accountable for any of its long list of known war crimes?  

Why do the American people allow a series of presidents, Democrat and Republican, to start wars all over the globe and NO ONE is ever punished for these obvious and glaring crimes against humanity?  Why are the American people so damn silent?

Why don't more people get off their butts and help stop WW III now before it happens so we won't have to say shit like, "Oh, why didn't I speak up while I could?"

Let's just be clear here - if the US attacks North Korea then China has said they will have to intervene and so will Russia.  That means nuclear war.  Trump is threatening nuclear war.....


Monday, September 18, 2017

October 7 Vigil at BIW during Keep Space for Peace Week

On Saturday, October 7 we will hold a vigil from 11:30 til 12:30 at Bath Iron Works in solidarity with Keep Space for Peace Week - the International Week of Protest to Stop the Militarization of Space.
We will meet across from the Administration building on Washington Street and walk up to the Navy Research Center at noon.
General Dynamics continues to build Aegis guided missile destroyers [equipped with so-called ‘missile defense’ systems] as well as the new Zumwalt which is on track to becoming the most expensive warship ever built.
It is imperative that we speak clearly to say No! to the building of warships here in Maine!  No! to the militarization of outer space.  It is time for us to set aside technologies that only enslave us to wars that never end.  The insanity of building these warships must come to an end so we can instead use the Earth’s resources to heal the many ills of our society and those we continue to inflict upon our Mother Earth.
Let’s stand together with love and with all of creation calling for DISARMAMENT NOW.
Let us ask “Where do these warships go when they leave BIW?”
Please bring signs and banners.
FMI call: Smilin’ Trees Disarmament Farm 763-4062

Gureombi: the Wind is Blowing

"Gureombi: the Wind is Blowing".

This is a full length film about the Gangjeong struggle on Jeju Island, South Korea and is directed by Cho Sung-bong and originally released in 2013.

The US gave the specifications for the Navy base in Gangjeong village to the South Korean government and told them to build the base.  Since the opening of the base last year US Navy warships have already begun to port there.

This heart-breaking film tells the tragic story about the destruction of sacred Gureombi rocky coastline and the still on-going struggle of the villagers and their many supporters.

Gangjeong is a 500 year old fishing and farming village of 2,000 residents that today is being over run by Navy personnel.  This story is just one tiny example of how the demands of the US military empire impact the lives of innocent people all over the world.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Weekend of Preparing for Peace Walk

Fellow Maine peaceniks Russell Wray (left) and Jason Rawn painting a barn

  • Mary Beth (MB) and I had a great day yesterday as we joined Lisa Savage and Mark Roman at the Sierra Club's climate change conference in Lewiston.  We went under the banner of Maine Natural Guard that Lisa has formed to bring the links between endless war and the Pentagon's impact on the environment to the public.  We handed out flyers about the upcoming Maine Peace Walk (October 13-21) that will be calling for the conversion of the Bath Iron Works Navy shipyard.
  • After we left Lewiston MB and I drove further south to York Beach, Maine where Boston-area Veterans For Peace (VFP) members were holding their annual BBQ at the summer home of Vietnam veteran Pat Scanlon. Fellow Mainers John Morris and Peter Morgan also came and we all had a moving time talking about US past and current war mongering.  The collective clarity and commitment for peace at these kinds of gatherings of veterans is always inspiring.  I spent some of the time talking with various guys about coming up for some part of the Maine Peace Walk.  Al Johnson is raising money in Boston for walk expenses which is a huge help.  This is the third year in a row that Al has taken on that task and we are very grateful.
  • In December I will be going to Okinawa with another VFP delegation.  This will be the third VFP trip to Okinawa to stand with the local people as they oppose expanding US military bases on their beleaguered island.  This new delegation will have more younger vets from more recent US wars.  Also several of those younger vets will be women.  
  • Maine artist Russell Wray (pictured above) will be coming along on the trip and is helping Jason Rawn paint a barn in order to make some money to cover his expenses.  Russell is the coordinator of Citizens Opposing Active Sonar Threats (COAST) and has a deep love for sea life - particularly sea mammals.  So this will be a special trip for him. One place we will join the locals in protesting is outside the gates of US Marine base Camp Schwab where the US is forcing the Japanese government to build twin-runways out over pristine Oura Bay for Pentagon war planes being sent to the Asia-Pacific as part of the 'pivot' of US military forces into the region.
  • People who live in South Korea, Okinawa, Japan and Guam are very worried about aggressive language by Donald Trump about 'fire and fury' because they know that their lives will be sacrificed if the US goes to war with North Korea - or China and Russia. 

Search those Buggers for Weapons

Veterans For Peace in the United Kingdom conduct a vehicle check point to search for banned weapons during the set up of the DSEi Arms Fair at the Excel Centre in London.

Sunday Song

Saturday, September 16, 2017

U.S. 'Ready to Fight' - South Koreans Want U.S. to Go Home

Tensions are heating up on the Korean peninsula, with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and President Trump exchanging heated threats.

AJ+'s Dena Takruri visits a U.S. military unit in South Korea whose motto is “Ready to Fight Tonight.” And she travels to a village where the U.S. military’s most advanced missile defense system, THAAD, has been installed in a remote village despite protests by local people.

One old woman in the melon farming village where THAAD has been deployed says: "Fucking pack up your fucking THAAD and get the fuck out of here!"

That pretty much says it all......

Friday, September 15, 2017

Space Week Actions List Forming

October 7-14, 2017

Keep Space for Peace Week

International Week of Protest to
Stop the Militarization of Space

No Missile Defense
Close U.S. Bases Worldwide
No to NATO
Stop Drones Surveillance & Killing
End Privatization of Foreign/Military Policy
Convert the Military Industrial Complex
Deal with climate change and global poverty

List in formation

  • Bath Iron Works, Maine (Oct 7) Vigil across from administration building on Washington Street (Navy Aegis destroyers outfitted with “missile defense” systems built at BIW) 11:30-12:30 am   Smilin’ Trees Disarmament Farm (207) 763-4062

  • Bath-Brunswick, Maine (Oct 13-21) 6th Maine Peace Walk will focus on conversion of Bath Iron Works with twice daily vigils at the shipyard and door-to-door leafleting. Sponsored by many groups in Maine and Massachusetts.

  • Bath, Maine (Oct 21) Finale event of Maine Peace Walk with music/speakers/food at Waterfront Park in downtown Bath from noon til 2:00 pm.

  • Belfast, Maine (Oct 7) Put up space week posters and hold ‘Stop Militarization of Space’ signs on Resistance Corner. Peace and Justice Group of Waldo County

  • Brunswick, Maine (Oct 12) Showing of new film Village versus Empire by South African filmmaker about new Navy base on Jeju Island that is porting US warships viewed through the eyes of Shaman artist Dohee Lee.  Sponsored by PeaceWorks at the Frontier Café & Cinema.  7:30 pm Tickets $8.

  • Brunswick, Maine (Oct 17) Maine Peace Walk will walk to nearby Brunswick and hold pot luck supper and evening program on impact of Bath Iron Works on the local environment, economy, ports-of-call overseas and the need for conversion of the shipyard to build appropriate sustainable systems.  Hosted by Unitarian Church, supper at 6:00 pm.

  • Colorado Springs, Colorado (Oct 9) Vigil at Peterson AFB at 3:30 pm.  A copy of the recent UN treaty banning nuclear weapons will be presented to base personnel. Peterson AFB is home to Air Force Space Command.

  • Colorado Springs, Colorado (Oct 10) Vigil at Schriever AFB at 3:30 pm.  Again a copy of the UN treaty will be presented to base personnel.  Schriever is home of the 50th Space Wing of the Air Force Space Command provides command and control for over 170 warning, navigational, and communications satellites. Also housed at Schriever AFB are the Missile Defense Integration & Operations Center and the Air Force Warfare Center. Schriever AFB is the main control point for the Global Positioning System (GPS).

  • USAF Croughton, England (Oct 7) March & Rally at U.S. satellite communication and intelligence base. Space communications, drones, bomber guidance, missile defence and command & control functions.  (Also will be the site of Global Network’s 26th annual meeting in 2018) 12-4 pm. Oxfordshire Peace Campaign,

  • Davis Monthan AFB, Arizona (Oct 10) Vigil at Craycroft Road entrance (at Golf Links Road) from 7:00 – 8:00 am.  Remotely piloting UAV's from the base that are firing guided bombs and missiles and killing more civilians than targeted "terrorists" in Afghanistan, Iraq Syria, Pakistan and possibly more sovereign nations.  A-10 warplanes that train at the base are responsible for the vast majority of radioactive Depleted Uranium ammunition - estimated at well over 400 tons - used in Iraq since 1991.  More info: 520-323-869

  • Gangjeong, Jeju Island, South Korea (Oct 7-14)  Picketing, educating, expressing solidarity with the people of Seongju and Gimcheon against THAAD,  in front of the Jeju navy base, sponsored by the Anti-naval base committee, Gangjeong Village

  • Gangjeong, Jeju Island, South Korea (Oct 14) Discussion on the "Keep Space for Peace week and military industry’, as a part of an event on the issue of Military Industry organized by People Making the Jeju, Peace Island to Be Demilitarized.   (

  • Gimcheon, South Korea (Oct 7-14) Nightly candlelight vigil against US deployment of THAAD missile defense system near their community (Gimcheon train station). The Gimcheon nightly candle vigil hit its one year anniversary on Aug. 20, 2017

  • King of Prussia, Pennsylvania (Oct 7) Noon, Keep Space 4 Peace meet-up at Lockheed Martin, 230 Mall Boulevard (Mall & Goddard Boulevards). L-M builds the remote-controlled drones, the satellites that direct the drones, and the Hellfire missiles fired from drones.

  • Kyoto, Japan (Oct 7) Dismantle U.S. X-band missile defense radar base and remove out of  Kyoto.  A gathering for the solidarity with people of Okinawa and Korean's anti-THAAD movement, 13:00-15:00, Citizen's Action Centre  Higashiyama Ward, and 15:30-17:00 Demonstration march to Koto City Hall. Contact: 090-15909469 (Mr. Yamamoto)

  • Menwith Hill, England (Oct 10) Demonstration at U.S. NSA/NRO Spy Base in Yorkshire.  6-7:30 pm.   Sponsored by Yorkshire CND and the Menwith Hill Accountability Campaign outside the main gate. 

  • Nagpur, India (Oct 7) Space week Awareness programme at the M. S. Institute of Social Work, Ms. Suparna Deshpande will organise.

  • Nagpur, India (Oct 8) Space week Protest demonstration organised by the Railway Pensioners Organisation and members of the Global Network.

  • New York, New York (Oct 7) An 11:30 am vigil at Washington Square Park followed at noontime with a solemn procession along University Place to Union Square.  There we will join the already-in-progress Yemen vigil on the steps at 14th Street. The message will cover the 16th anniversary of the Afghanistan invasion, the threats to North Korea, weapons in space and all current U.S. wars and so-called "missions." WRL has set up a FB event page at 

  • Seongju, South Korea (Oct 7-14) Nightly candlelight vigil against US deployment of THAAD missile defense system near their community (a parking lot across from the Seongju County Office)  The Seongju nightly candle vigil hit its one year anniversary as of July 13, 2017.

  • Soseong-ri, Seongju, South Korea (Oct 7-14) Soseong-ri in Seongju is located just next to Gimcheon. It is a small village lived by around 160 people - mostly elderly women and men farming melons. The residents and their supporters have been protesting day and night since the former Lotte Skyhill Country Club site in Soseong-ri was discussed as the planned THAAD deployment site in August, last year. A radar and two launchers of THAAD system were forcefully deployed in the former LCC on April 26, this year. Still they are continuing their struggle to stop more deployment of four launchers.  Beside their 24 hour vigil, they hold a regular rally every Wednesday in front of Soseong-ri village hall which started on Nov. 30. 2016. 

  • Weld County, Colorado (Oct 7) Vigil at Nuclear missile silo N-8 in Weld County at 1 pm, the site of historic plowshares action 15 years ago by Sisters Ardeth Platte and Carol Gilbert.

  • Vandenberg AFB, California (Oct 4) Keep Space for Peace vigil at space warfare base at the Main Gate from 3:45 pm to 4:45 pm.  For information contact Dennis Apel at 805-343-6322.

  • Visakhapatnam, India (Oct 9) Workshop on 'Peace Communication' at Dept of Journalism & Mass Communication of Andhra University as part of Global Network's Peace week. Organizing Team: Dr. Challa Ramakrishna, HOD, Journalism Dept and Mr. Krishnaveer Abhishek Challa, Soft Skills Trainer of AU.

Keep Space for Peace Week co-sponsored by: Anti-naval base Committee of Gangjeong village, Jeju Island, South Korea; US Task Force to Stop THAAD in Korea & Militarism in Asia & the Pacific; Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom; Global Action Against Military Bases; NoDalMolin (Italy);


· Space videos for viewing and sharing available at:

·  Latest Global Network Space Alert newsletter at:

·  John Pilger’s new film The Coming War on China For screenings, contact Bullfrog Films 
· Village versus Empire film about Jeju Island through the eyes of shaman artist by South African filmmaker Mark Kaplan.  Order DVD by contacting          
·  Global Action Against Military Bases