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

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Ash Wednesday vigil at BIW

The Lenten Vigil for Disarmament begins on Ash Wednesday, March 6 from 11:30 am till 12:30 to protest the building of warships at Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine.

We will gather across from the Administration building on Washington Street and then walk up to the Navy Research building with signs.

We will continue the vigil each Saturday of Lent. (March 9, 16, 23, 30, April 6, 13 and 20th)

General Dynamics continues to build Aegis guided missile destroyers as well as the new Zumwalt stealth destroyer [the LBJ is the next Zumwalt scheduled to be ‘christened’ in the spring] here at the BIW shipyard. That reality is an ongoing crime against humanity.

It is time for us to set aside technologies that only enslave us to wars that never end.  Lent calls us to awaken to what we are about and repent for that we are doing that is wrong and to continue to build these Aegis guided missile destroyers is wrong.

So in the spirit of love together we stand in opposition to war and in hope for a disarmed world.

~ Smilin’ Tress Disarmament Farm
    Hope, Maine

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Washington not pursuing humanitarian goals

See more on the exposure of the failed US attempt to slip the Trojan horse into Venezuela here.

Climate change update

And we wonder why.....

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Send a message

Click here to send letter to Congress.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Trump admin is 'shameless'

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza sits down with The Grayzone's Anya Parampil to discuss his secret meetings with Trump envoy Elliot Abrams, how the war in Syria reordered international relations, and Caracas' efforts to form a Non-Aligned Movement "adapted to the 21st century."

Feinstein blows off kids worried about climate change

This is how Senator Dianne Feinstein reacted to children asking her to support the #GreenNewDeal resolution -- with smugness and disrespect.

This California Democrat shows what Congress thinks of the future generations.

Throw all the arrogant bunch of them out and start over with a Congress full of 12-year olds.  We'd be much better off.

Anyone who believes the Democrats are working for the people needs their head examined.  These jerks work for the fossil fuel industry and Wall Street.

Feinstein should resign today after this display of ignorance and incompetence.

We need to call for massive cuts in the Pentagon budget and conversion of the war machine if we hope to have the needed resources to make the Green New Deal a reality. The Pentagon has the largest carbon boot print on Mother Earth....


Sunday, February 24, 2019

Bolton chants 'Libertad' and 'All options are on the table'

On the eve of another US war for oil, Abby Martin debunks the most repeated myths about Venezuela and uncovers how US sanctions are crimes against humanity with UN Investigator and Human Rights Rapporteur Alfred De Zayas.

This video is a must watch and a must share.  

Venezuela solidarity protest in Brunswick

Click on any of the photos for a better view

We had 50 folks turn out in Brunswick yesterday along the town green (covered in snow) for our local action along with hundreds of protests worldwide in solidarity with Venezuela's sovereignty.

I borrowed a small portable sound system from a friend and we asked people to share their thoughts.  Quite a few spoke up.  Then we walked toward downtown and back to increase our visibility.  The primary spot we stood was just across the street from the entrance to the grocery store so there was alot of traffic - and quite a good number of honks.

One of our speakers called out NPR (National Petroleum Radio) for their slavish reporting of government lies - always reading the memos it seems from the CIA and the Pentagon.  People are so fed up with corporate dominated media these days - it's like an epidemic of disgust.

There was another protest in Maine yesterday - in Belfast two hours to the north.  Here is a photo below from there.  The rest of the photos above were snapped by Peter Robbins from Sedgewick and Roger Leisner from Augusta.

Thanks to all who turned out around the state.  The public is skeptical of one more Washington regime change attempt - particularly when Venezuela has the largest supply of oil in the world.  But unless we get out on the street most people will feel isolated and figure no one else thinks like they do.  That's why so many honked their horns at us - they were thanking us for letting them see they are not alone and crazy.

Keep plugging away....


Sunday song

Saturday, February 23, 2019

GN founders Grossman & Gagnon on 'Space Force'

Listen to "Trump issues Space Force order as arms race looms" on Spreaker.

A regular segment deals with the ongoing militarization of space. As the US continues to withdraw from international arms treaties, will the weaponization and militarization of space bring the world closer to catastrophe?

Global Network founders (1992) journalist Karl Grossman and organizer Bruce Gagnon answer questions about Trump's proposal for the 'Space Force'.

Congress will have to agree to appropriate the funds Trump requests that would ensure a new arms race in space.

The founders....

Friday, February 22, 2019

Going shopping in Caracas

The corporate media claimed Venezuela has no basic food or supplies, so The Grayzone's Max Blumenthal investigated—at a giant supermarket in Caracas.

Report on Yellow Vest movement in France

A Yellow vest in France, who was trying to push other people to throw stones, was grabbed by the police.

He then says, “No, no, guys, I’m with you”. Of course the police don’t believe him and keep pulling him. An officer arrives, says a few words to them and, then, they simply release the guy. This video shows that the police are blending in with the Yellow vests and trying to stir up violence.

Do you see it Macron? The movement is drastically loosing steam

See much more on the Yellow vest movement in this report from France here.

How come the US government and media don't apply the same standard to France's repression of protests that they do in so many other nations where Washington supports regime change?

Chew on that one for awhile.

What is a sovereign nation?

Putin's message to the Federal Assembly on the 20th of February included a number of interesting statements including a comment on Russia's existence as a state and sovereignty. According to Putin, Russia cannot exist without its sovereignty.

That of course means that Russia refuses to sign on as a corporate appendage and surrender its natural resources - which of course explains why Moscow is on the US-NATO shit list.

The United Nations charter backs up what Putin is saying about sovereignty.  Every country should be free from the shackles of corporate domination.  But sadly Mr. Big thinks he can take down anyone who dares stand up to Washington-London-Paris-Brussels.

Everyday I read another story of another country that the US-NATO are destabilizing in order to install a puppet government that will do the bidding of Mr. Big.  Just today I read this one about the goings on in Macedonia.  See it here

The article includes these words:

The way things are shaping up down south (viewed from Belgrade) the tiny, helpless, beleaguered new Balkan state of Macedonia could be the trigger for a wider regional conflict. It is well to remember the adage of veteran politician Franklin Delano Roosevelt, especially in the present context: If it turned out a certain way, it is probably because that is the way it was planned.

Both the present-day authorities and the opposition which until two years ago ruled the country are under the command of the US Embassy in Skopje and ambassador Jess Baily.
I have no doubt that the US is a failed state and a collapsing empire.  That is what makes it so dangerous.  Washington is wrecking havoc all over the planet as it desperately tries to hang onto empire by hook or by crook.  The mobster-like knee smashing that the US is doing to ensure it gets its way is causing lots of pain and chaos.

Trump's announcement that Washington was taking down the sovereign Venezuelan government has the support of most Democrats in the Congress.  While Trump says he wants out of Syria the Democrats are pressuring him to stay there - largely as a base to force regime change in Iran and help Israel expand its reach.

Master of Space

Trump's call this week for a 'Space Force' must first be approved by the House of Representatives which is controlled by the Democrats.  We all need to apply pressure on Congress not to fund a new arms race in space.  The Pentagon has long said that who ever controls space will control the Earth below - on behalf of corporate interests.  Russia and China won't stand aside and allow the US to 'control and dominate space' - something the aerospace industry understands as they line up with their silver cup in hand ready to rake in even more profit$.

So the US collapse will fall hard on the world.  The dark side is pushing endless war and next war in the heavens.  Many people have given up hope.  The activist menu is already full: climate change, growing global income disparity and poverty, declining health of our Mother Earth - and now we add Star Wars into the equation.  Who can cope with it all?

Global Network co-founder Karl Grossman (journalist and professor) and I were on the Loud & Clear radio/podcast show this morning talking about the weaponization of space.  I told the story how years ago the aerospace publication Space News editorialized that the industry was sending their lobbyists to Washington to secure a dedicated funding source for 'everything space'.  They said it was the 'entitlement programs' that are Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and what is left of the already tattered social safety net.  These are the programs the war machine has targeted for defunding in order to move the money into their greedy coffers.

The public has to connect the dots here - want to save Social Security?  Then you'd better help kill a space arms race or else plan to move in with your neighbors when you get older.  Stop the endless wars if you want to have Medicare when you hit 65 years old.

Sadly the global media has been comfortably secured inside Mr. Big's hip pocket.  Few options are available to critics of this corporate criminal syndicate as the playing field shrinks and democracy is drowned.

Carry the light

But we still have our mouths to speak and our hands to hold banners and our legs to march.  We must step up these activities and not allow ourselves to be silenced.

Inside of our hearts beats the love for one another and our beautiful spinning planet Earth. Let that love continue to carry us forward.  Become the light in the darkness.


Thursday, February 21, 2019

I can only say Wow!

When have you ever heard an American politician say anything like this?

I heard in recent days that the Democrats, wanting to keep Tulsi out of the primary debates, have come up with a new policy to require any candidate wishing to get into the debates needing to have 63,000 individual donors.

Two days ago the Democrat party front group Daily Kos sent around an online poll of the Democrat candidates for president.  They left off Tulsi's name but had the names of three other party politicians who have not even announced for president.  So clearly the Democrats are already trying to internally steer the process to their desired outcome.

I'm not a big fan of Bernie Sanders but having just declared that he is running for president he is already being slammed by insider Dems for not supporting the Trump take down of Venezuela.  See an article on that here. 

In the last election I was often critical of Bernie Sanders who was frankly terrible on foreign policy. But I did give him his due on his domestic policies which were largely excellent. In the end I didn't vote for him.

I've not voted for a Democrat for president since Walter Mondale. I'm not likely to vote for one anytime soon either. But I am anxious to see the Democrats challenged internally by anyone willing to call them out on endless war. So I think it would be good to have Sanders and Tulsi in the debates - otherwise there will be no real discussion because the rest of the pack are pretty much all corporate approved Dems.

Thus MB and I donated to Tulsi's campaign to help ensure she gets into the debates.  There is great value in having her question US endless war policies.


Leave Venezuela alone - join local protests on February 23

At a days-long anti-intervention protest in Caracas, The Grayzone’s Aaron Maté speaks to a Venezuelan teacher about the impact of US sanctions and fears that the Trump administration wants to stoke a civil war.

Leave Venezuela alone - let the people figure it out - that is what democracy is supposed to be about.

Regime change is imperialism - coup d'etat - fascism - authoritarianism - colonialism - call it what you wish.  Anyway you cut it what the US is doing in Venezuela today is illegal under international law.

Local protests are being organized all over the world on February 23.  Check out this list and join one.

Here in Maine we'll protest in Brunswick on the town green at 11:00 am.

Hands off Venezuela!


The thought police

Very important show by Jimmy Dore - must listen.

If you are not upset about this then you are likely not paying close enough attention.

Jimmy Dore is proving to be one of the most consistent critics of corporate rule these days. Corporations are cracking down on free speech because Alternative Media is becoming so popular. 

It helps that Dore makes you laugh now and then while he is revealing the horrors of our time.


Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Trump goes for space domination and the 'Space Force'

White House Announcement: Trump is Establishing America’s Space Force

"Our destiny, beyond the Earth, is not only a matter of national identity, but a matter of national security."

~ President Donald J. Trump

ESTABLISHING THE SPACE FORCE: President Donald J. Trump’s Space Policy Directive-4 is a bold, strategic step toward guaranteeing American space dominance that sets the framework for establishing the United States Space Force.

  • Space Policy Directive-4 calls on the Secretary of Defense to develop a legislative proposal establishing the Space Force as the sixth branch of the Armed Forces. 
  • The Space Force will initially be established within the Department of the Air Force.
  • The legislative proposal will embody President Trump’s vision for the Space Force by requiring this new branch of the Armed Forces to:
  • Strengthen America’s ability to compete, deter and win in an increasingly contested domain.
  • Organize, train and equip our space warfighters with next-generation capabilities. 
  • Maximize warfighting capability and advocacy for space while minimizing bureaucracy.

A VITAL NATIONAL INTEREST: Our use of space is necessary to keep our country safe, protect lives, and support our way of life.

  • The United States is the best in space, and our adversaries know it.
  • Space is a key source of strategic advantage for the United States, and potential foreign adversaries are determined to restrict our access to it.
  • America has the most capable military in the world, but we must address the looming threats from foreign adversaries in space to maintain our leadership and outpace competitors.
  • America will always seek peace through strength, and we will work with our allies and partners to secure that peace in space.
  • United States space forces will be ready to win in a competitive multi-domain environment against increasingly competitive adversaries.
  • To meet and deter challenges in space, Space Policy Directive-4:
  • Launches a joint interagency review by the National Space Council and the National Security Council to recommend changes to space operational authorities in order to address the threats posed by foreign adversaries.
  • Requires the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community to create collaborative mechanisms to improve space capabilities and operations.

LEADING IN A NEW WARFIGHTING DOMAIN: President Trump knows warfare is changing – space is now a warfighting domain just like the air, land and sea.

  • No branch of the Armed Forces has been created since the United States Air Force was established in 1947, more than 70 years ago. The world has changed significantly since then.
  • Establishing the Space Force is critical to preparing the Department of Defense for the evolving warfighting environments of the twenty-first century. 
  • President Trump is dedicated to protecting the Nation and preparing America’s military to deter and defeat threats in space.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The cold shoulder in Munich

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence spoke about ISIS, the Iran Nuclear Deal and NATO at the 2019 Munich Security Conference.  

Vice President Mike Pence mentioned his boss in a speech Saturday, and he may not have gotten the reaction he expected.

As he spoke to attendees of the Munich Security Conference, he noted that he was there on behalf of a "great champion of freedom and of a strong national defense."

"I bring greetings from the 45th president of the United States of America, President Donald Trump," Pence said.

Pence paused, perhaps waiting for a reaction.

The response? Silence.

After about five seconds, Pence continued with his speech.

Pence twisted arms demanding that NATO members do more in increase military contributions to the 'alliance'.  It's not a popular idea across Europe to cut more social spending and give more money to the likes of Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Raytheon, General Dynamics, etc.

Pence also carried water for the US-based energy corporations that are pushing Europe not to buy natural gas from Russia.  Instead the US is demanding that Europe purchase more expensive fracked gas from America to be shipped across the Atlantic at great cost on huge LNG ships.  Europe can count the Euros and appears to be resisting such a foolish notion.

All in all the Trump administration's arrogance is not going over well around the world.  (Of course there are some exceptions.  Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, grandson of one of imperial Japan's fascist war cabinet ministers, has nominated Trump for the Nobel Peace Prize.)  

The US goal is to keep Europe separated from Russia.  It's all part of Trumps MAGA (Make America Great Again) strategy.  But it is not working and the opposite appears to be happening. 

The New York Times reported:
Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany delivered a strong rejoinder on Saturday to American demands that European allies pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and gave a spirited defense of multilateral institutions in a world increasingly marked by great-power rivalry.
Trump is learning that it is lonely at the top of a collapsing military empire.


Monday, February 18, 2019

Live streaming tonight

Monday, Feb 18

Global Network Live Stream on Missile "Defense" or other such unpleasant subjects.....

Open to the Public

Today at 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM EST

Bruce Gagnon and Will Griffin of the Global Network will speak about Trump's recent Missile "Defense" review. Why is missile "defense" important? How will Space Force impact the country and policies? And what can people do to oppose it?

We will continue to do these interviews every 1st and 3rd Monday of every month. Come join us and bring questions with you!

Here is the link to the live stream which will begin on Feb 18th at 7pm EST:

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Latest This Issue show

Here is my interview with Tanya Bukharina from Crimea, Russia.

Sunday song

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Jeju Island hunger strikers to hospital

Global Network board member and friend Sung-Hee Choi taken to hospital during her hunger strike against 2nd airport on Jeju Island, South Korea that will be used for a military air base

We don't have much information other than GN board member Sung-Hee Choi has been taken to a Jeju Island hospital because of deep concern for her health.  She and several others have been holding extended hunger strikes on Jeju Island, South Korea to oppose a 2nd airport on the island that many believe is going to have military application.

Sung-Hee has long been a leader in the fight in Gangjeong village against the Navy base that was built for the US so it could port its warships being sent to the Asia-Pacific under the 'pivot' of Pentagon forces into that region by the Obama administration - and now continues under Trump.

I believe all of these four in this photo have been doing the hunger strike and already at least three of them have been taken to the hospital.

Our hearts and prayers are with all of them.

We must all keep up the fight against the preparation for WW III now underway by the US, NATO and its various allies which is without any doubt aimed at China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, Syria, Venezuela and more.

Any nation that does not surrender to the western corporate capitalist banking system is having a loaded gun pointed at their heads and are told - 'every option is on the table'.

That includes nuclear war.


Update:  We have received word this morning that Sung-Hee is doing alright and has ended her 24-day hunger strike.

Washington strategy: Smear the critics

NBC News and their Capitol Hill correspondent Kasie Hunt claimed that Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard was being supported by a “Russian machine” (RT).

RT’s Dan Cohen, the reporter behind the Gabbard story that has since been attacked by Hunt, sits down with Manila Chan to discuss the credibility of NBC.

Investigative journalist Ben Swann joins the discussion about the attacks waged against RT, the state of journalism in America and Tulsi Gabbard’s foreign policy reputation.

 #RTAmerica #InQuestionRT #QuestionMore

Friday, February 15, 2019

Will Park: 'Get more size on it'

Art work by Will Park - my friend and 35-year collaborator on using art to illustrate the organizing of the Florida Coalition for Peace & Justice as well as the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space.

We traveled to Cuba together and had regular BBQ lunches throughout the greater Orlando, Florida area for many years.  He illustrated our newspapers, our flyers and our posters.  He even made a short film about our work called The Poster.

Will is one of the greatest artists and humanists that I've ever known.

I love him like a brother.


An expensive new space arms race

RT reports:

A new US intelligence report portraying Moscow and Beijing as trying to bring warfare into the heavens has drawn the ire of China, which insists that space is not Washington’s “private property.”

“I want to make it clear that outer space belongs to all mankind. It is not exclusively owned by any one country and especially not the private property of the US,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said, referring to the latest paper by the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).

Hua slammed the “unwarranted and utterly baseless comments” in the DIA report, saying China stands for the peaceful use of space and opposes its militarization.

“For many years,” the spokeswoman stated, “China, Russia and other countries have been working hard and trying to reach an international legal instrument to fundamentally prevent the weaponization of or an arms race in outer space.”

The DIA report – which comes amid Donald Trump’s cosmic endeavors such as the establishment of the Space Command – fans fears of US dominance being challenged everywhere, including space. Russia and China “view space as important to modern warfare and view counterspace capabilities as a means to reduce US and allied military effectiveness,” it claims, noting that both countries have done much to boost their capabilities.

“These capabilities provide their militaries… with enhanced situational awareness, enabling them to monitor, track, and target US and allied forces,” the DIA says.

What it did not say, however, is that a host of senior US military leaders have openly discussed the prospect of offensive weapons being delivered into Earth’s orbit. Former Pentagon chief James Mattis, for instance, said in 2017 that the US needs to have offensive weapons in space “should someone decide to militarize it and go on the offensive.”

In fact, Moscow warned in early January that it’s Washington which is eying space as a potential battlefield. In particular, the Russian Foreign Ministry cited US plans to develop space-based interceptors.

The US, China, Russia, and dozens of other countries are parties to the 1967 Outer Space Treaty that bars weapons of mass destruction from being placed in space and installing them on the Moon or any other celestial body.   

Thursday, February 14, 2019

We are judged by how we treat the children

This sign at the school lunch room reminds me of the story about Sitting Bull, the Hunkpapa Lakota leader who led his people during years of resistance to US Army efforts to exterminate the native population.

He was killed by Indian agency police on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation during an attempt to arrest him, at a time when authorities feared that he would join the Ghost Dance movement that some believed would revive the Lakota nation.

Sitting Bull around 1883

Prior to his death Sitting Bull was a performer with Buffalo Bill's Wild West show that toured east coast cities in the US.  He earned about $50 a week for riding once around the arena, where he was a popular attraction. Sitting Bull stayed with the show for four months before returning home.

While in New York City one day Sitting Bull was walking down the street and many homeless children came up to him begging for money.  He sat on a door stoop and handed them coins and spoke with them.

When Sitting Bull returned to the South Dakota reservation he spoke to those gathered around a council fire.  He told them, "We are in big trouble.  You should see how the white man treats his children."


Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Feb 23: Local solidarity protests with Venezuela

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Hearing from a Russian citizen

I interviewed Tanya Bukharina yesterday on my public access TV show that has been playing on local stations across Maine for the past 16 years.  

Tanya is from Yalta, Crimea, Russia and we talked about the 2014 referendum where about 97% of voters said they wanted to leave Ukraine and return to Russia. (About 81% eligible citizens voted in the referendum.)

I asked Tanya if Putin and Russia want to recreate the former Soviet Union and take over the world as the US and NATO have repeated claimed.  She of course laughed at the suggestion and reminded me that when she took me around Crimea last October during my trip to Russia there were construction projects all over the place.  Her point - Russia is investing in building not destroying.

If you, like me, are fact oriented then please consider the simple truth that Washington spends about one trillion dollars a year on its war machine in comparison to Moscow which spends about $60 billion a year on their military.  In fact Russia has cut their military budget the last two years in order to help deal with poverty across their nation. Don't we wish we had a government in the US that would do the same?

Tonight here in Brunswick we are holding a pot luck supper for Tanya (although a big snow storm is to begin about the same time as the supper).  On Sunday, Feb 17, she has a public speaking event at the local library in Brunswick.  I know of some people driving all the way from Boston (3 hours away) to hear Tanya speak.  Should be great.

We don't often get the chance to have speakers from Russia visit us but I can't think of a more important time than now to do just that.  The lies, demonization of Putin and Russia, and the escalation of US-NATO encirclement of Russia is worse than even during the Cold War days.  

While I don't trust the mainstream corporate controlled media I still keep an eye on it.  (The great 60's activist Abbie Hoffman once spoke at a Florida Coalition for Peace & Justice retreat I organized in the late 1980's and he asked us, "If you don't watch TV how the hell can you know what the American people are thinking?")  I've never before seen the kind of non-stop recycled red-baiting that is going on these days.

When I take a group of Global Network and Veterans For Peace members to Russia in the spring for a study tour we will also visit Crimea and Tanya will be our guide. 

Americans have been taught to viscerally hate and fear everything Russia.  We thank Tanya for coming to help humanize the good people of her country.


Photo by Regis Tremblay

Macron takes on Germany

An intense political conflict has flared up, this time between France and Germany. It seems that nobody saw it coming. Since as recently as January, in Aachen, Germany, Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel were looking like new lovers.

However, this political honeymoon didn't last for long. No more than two weeks later, the German Süddeutsche Zeitung announced Macron's anger. On Thursday, the newspaper published a leak that France was planning to confront Nord Stream 2 - the natural gas pipeline from Russia to Europe.

The US wants to kill Nord Stream 2 and force Europe to purchase more expensive 'fracked gas' shipped overseas by American energy corporations.

It appears that Macron has taken Trump's side on this one.  Maybe Trump has promised Macron that Washington will protect Paris from the Yellow Jackets?

Monday, February 11, 2019

Trump: 'To the victor belong the spoils'

Vijay Prashad discusses the extent to which US interest in Venezuelan oil and other natural resources is driving Trump’s policy of seeking regime change.

Prashad is the executive director of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research. He is the author or editor of several books, including The Darker Nations: A Biography of the Short-Lived Third World and The Poorer Nations: A Possible History of the Global South. His most recent book is Red Star Over the Third World. He writes regularly for Frontline, The Hindu, Alternet and BirGun.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Crimea speaker in Brunswick on Feb. 17

I'll also be interviewing Tatiana (Tanya) on my public access TV show that airs on 17 Maine stations.  We do the show on Monday and should have it up on YouTube in a week or so.

Tanya was my guide in Crimea when I visited there last October and will be guiding our study tour group when we go there next spring.

She really knows her stuff when it comes to history and culture of Crimea.  Going to be a great talk on February 17.


Sunday song

Saturday, February 09, 2019

Visitors from Taiwan

Yesterday MB and I took my son Julian and his wife Emily (who are visiting from Taiwan) to Five Islands near Georgetown, Maine.  It's one of my favorite spots and the sun came up after a dreary morning to brighten our trip there.

When we got home Jules and Emily cooked us a great Chinese meal and then we went across the street to Bowdoin College to watch the #1 ranked women's basketball team in the nation play.  They are undefeated in Division II and won again in a spirited game.

No snow is going to fall while they are here but the warm temperatures of the last couple of days will drop today by 25 degrees and the snow that was on the ground which melted is now a solid sheet of ice.

It's been great having them here with us.  We don't get to see them so often so we are making the best of it.


Friday, February 08, 2019

Report from Hawaii opposition to launch complex - No Space Pork!

HILO, Hawaiʻi - People packed the room at the Grand Naniloa Resort to hear about the proposed Pacific Spaceport Complex-Hawaii and the environmental assessment process.

An informational meeting was held Wednesday evening in Hilo to introduce the public to a new spaceport proposal.

The Alaska Aerospace Corporation wants to develop a Pacific Spaceport Complex-Hawaiʻi, or PSCH, on Shipman lands in Keaʻau and is beginning the state and federal environmental assessment process for the project. The spaceport would “support commercial small vertical launch vehicle capability for inserting small payloads from the east side of the Island of Hawaiʻi into equatorial and low-inclination orbits.”

A crowd of interested residents overflowed the Grand Naniloa Resort space, where display easels lined the room and consultants answered questions. Some attendees wrote their comments down on paper, others expressed their opposition directly to the project executives, while others sang songs of resistance.

The meeting was part of a scoping session, which will help Alaska Aerospace identify significant issues for consideration to be analyzed in the PSCH environmental assessment. Next, the project team will collect data “to contribute to the determination of the likely environmental impacts (including socioeconomics) of the option for constructing and operating a commercial spaceport for small low-inclination/equatorial flights.”

After that, a draft Environmental Assessment will be prepared, and an opportunity for public comment.

History lesson: Venezuela a repeat of U.S. take down of Chile

The Battle of Chile is a documentary film directed by the Chilean Patricio Guzman, in three parts: The Insurrection of the Bourgeoisie (1975), The Coup d'état (1976), Popular Power (1979). It is a chronicle of the political tension in Chile in 1973 and of the violent counter revolution against the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende. It won the Grand Prix in 1975 and 1976 at the Grenoble International Film Festival. In 1996, Chile, Obstinate Memory was released and followed Guzmán back to Chile as he screened the 3-part documentary to Chileans who had never seen it before.

The film opens in March 1973 with reporters asking people how they intend to vote in the coming congressional election. The election is taking place after Allende has been in office for over two years and has been trying to reorganize society along democratic socialist lines. His "Popular Unity" coalition was put into office with only a third of the popular vote. His efforts to nationalize certain industries have met with internal and foreign opposition, and Chile is suffering economic deprivations.

In the election Allende makes gains to 43.4 percent of the votes, though the opposition bloc is strong too, up to 56 percent. The film has street interviews, speeches, the violent confrontations, the mobs and meetings, the parades with workers chanting. Part One finishes with newsreel footage from an Argentine cameraman Leonardo Henrichsen who was photographing street skirmishes. A soldier takes aim and kills the cameraman, and the image spins skyward.

Part Two - "The Coup d'état" begins with the right wing violence of the winter of 1973 (June is winter in the southern hemisphere) against the government. Army troops seize control of downtown Santiago - but the attempted coup is snuffed out in a few hours. "The film leaps from one group to another ... It shows the different elements in the explosive situation with so much clarity that it's a Marxist tract in which the contradictions of capitalism have sprung to life. We actually see the country cracking open. Step by step, the legal government is overthrown."

Everybody in Chile seems to know the coup d'état is coming and talk about it openly - yet the people who have most to lose can't get together enough to do anything. Allende's naval aide-de-camp Arturo Araya is killed, and the camera moves around the funeral attendees - General Augusto Pinochet among them. In July, the truck owners, funded by the CIA, begin their long strike, which paralyzes the distribution of food, gasoline, and fuel, and there is a call for Allende to resign. Instead Allende holds a rally - around 800,000 people arrive, but they have no weapons. On September 11, the Navy institutes the coup d'état, and the Air Force bombs the state radio station. The palace is bombarded from the air. And then the chiefs of the junta on television are seen announcing they'll return the country to order.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

NBC red baits Rep. Tulsi Gabbard

NBC news smears 2020 presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) as being linked to Russia. Their sources are beyond pathetic…Buckle in for this one…

Why is NBC doing this?

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

Kick their ass and steal their gas

Watch out for white 'christian
American men

bearing gifts
wrapped in papers
respect for the rule of law
and of course

Watch out for the treaty
the great white father
from Washington

ask any
American Indian
about promises
and declarations
of intent

the white man
with a fucked up

Watch out
when the fat cat
white men
laugh at you

know that
their knife will
be stuck
in your back
very soon

Stay on guard
evil is
as evil does
says those
from long ago
taken this ride
once or twice

this arrogance
a deep self loathing
a deep lack of confidence
a deep hatred of humanity
and life itself
a deep spiritual

Know that our
self proclaimed
are the devil
in disguise


Twitter goes off on Venezuela....

TeleSur English reports:

Nearly 2,000 pro-Venezuelan Twitter accounts have been removed for “engaging in a state-backed influence campaign,” the social media company said in a blog post on Thursday.
A total of 1,196 social media accounts based in Venezuela suspected of attempting to “influence domestic audiences” were purged last week.

Another 764 accounts were deleted, although the San Francisco-based company told users, “We are unable to definitively tie the accounts located in Venezuela to information operations of a foreign government against another country.”

Allegations of censorship soon filled the site’s timeline.

Television host for the investigatory series, Empire Files, Abby Martin tweeted, “While pro-coup Venezuelans & right-wing exiles dominate the media sphere, tech companies are actively censoring pro-government accounts they say are working to "influence" people.”

Another journalist, Ben Norton, accused the company of catering to “U.S. government interests:” Twitter is now removing thousands of accounts supposedly linked to Venezuela's sovereign government. This comes after Twitter suspended Venezuelan government accounts 1.5 years ago. Social media corporations act as an extension of US government interests.”

In another blog post, Twitter announced the release of five new datasets which were allegedly created in relation to suspected foreign interference efforts it had encountered.

Tuesday, February 05, 2019

It's all a big lie

Excellent video by The Intercept

U.S. hates treaties - What can we do?

Americans often present themselves as arsonists and as firefighters at the same time

  • When you believe that you are god's chosen people then fair play, treaties and international law mean nothing.  Might makes right.  The gun is to be used at will. Democracy is just an easy phrase to throw around when needed to justify the mafia-like foreign policy of this corporate criminal nation. 
  • Following the US move to suspend its obligations under INF treaty, the Russian Defence Ministry said that Washington started preparations for the production of medium- and short-range missiles prohibited under the INF deal two years before accusing Moscow of violating the accord. The Russian Defence Ministry has released satellite images of Raytheon Corporation’s plant [in Arizona], saying the facility has been prepared for the production of missiles prohibited under the INF deal. 
  • Russia has a no first use policy - so nuclear war only likely starts after a US first-strike attack. The US Space Command has been annually war gaming such an attack on Russia and China for years. After the US launches the first-strike nuclear sword in the war game, Russia and China respond with their retaliatory strikes. It is then that Pentagon 'missile defense' (MD) shield is used to pick off what Washington thinks would be a limited response - giving the US a 'successful' first-strike. The US has long refused to rule out first-use. Washington pulled out of the ABM Treaty with Russia that outlawed these MD shield systems in 2002 under George W. Bush. The Pentagon is today encircling Russia and China with MD systems based at sea and on land. Now Trump wants to put MD systems in space too.  Imagine the cost$.
  • I sent around an email the other day outlining the US pull-out from the INF Treaty.  One person wrote me and said he was tired of hearing about the problems - he wanted to know what we could do about it. I suggested to him that many people don't know anything about the INF Treaty and that we always must start with education.  Then for sure action is needed.  So below I've posted some ideas of things people can do.  Are any of them the 'magic bullet'?  No, there is no such thing. Send me your ideas as well and I'll post them.
* Stop watching mainstream media.  Read and listen to more alternative media sources.  Pay more attention to what protest movements around the world are saying and doing.  Read more international media - including outlets from (dare I say) Iran, Russia, China, Venezuela and more.

* Protest, protest, protest, said Susan B. Anthony.

* Teach people about the reality of nuclear war.  Peace groups did great work during the 1980-90's on that issue but an entirely new generation knows virtually nothing about nukes.

* Learn more about how space technology today coordinates all Pentagon warfare.  Share the information with others.  This website is a great resource. 

* Rebirth the Occupy movement or a new version of it.

* Key to defeating the empire is unity. It’s not a slogan, it’s a reality.  Integrate the issues - show the links so our movements are not divided. The current form of 'silo' organizing (every group/issue on their own) only plays into the ruling elites hands.

* Get out on the street where the public can see you and your protest signs & banners.  Because most people watch the corporate media they have no idea that anyone is opposed to issues like pulling out of the INF Treaty or the current Washington attempts to force regime change in Venezuela.  Be willing to risk arrest for non-violent civil resistance at military production facilities, congressional offices, on Wall Street or at resource extraction sites.

* Speak up when you see an opportunity.  Fear often keeps us quite when we should show leadership.

* Even though Congress is damn near under total corporate control still send letters to your elected officials.  It might help to slow down the empire just a bit.  We have nothing to lose in that regard.
Sign the petitions online that go to Congress.  It takes just a few seconds and helps keep some level of pressure on the hacks in Washington.

* Still write letters to the editor even though admittedly it is getting harder and harder to get them printed.  But your letter (even if not printed) might help another good letter get into the paper.  Got to keep the pressure on the media.

* When you come across an impressive article or video on the Internet share the hell out of it.  Don't assume that everyone will see it.  Be proactive.

* Defend social progress and support funding for the Green New Deal by cutting the military budget.  Find ways to push those points into the public consciousness.  Repetition is important.

* Share political art and music.  Expressions of cultural resistance often reach beyond words.

* Help globalize the resistance to corporate rule.  Make links with international movements and support one another.

* Recognize that American history is full of corporate domination/Christian fundamentalist 'exceptional nation' bullshit.  But our history is also full of people's resistance against this arrogance and deceit.  Keep the fires burning.

* Be critical of the Democrats.  Have you noticed they hate everything Trump does and then suddenly they are supporting his Venezuela take down?  Can you see that the Democrats don't want to bring our troops home from Syria and Afghanistan?  How they hell can anyone think the Democrats are 'the resistance'?  

* Stop believing that electing 'just the right next president' is going to make any difference.  What will make a difference is a non-violent revolution of values in this country that breaks the back of our current corporate domination!

* Don't accept the segregation of the generations.  Old people and young people are kept apart in the US.  We have much to learn from each other.  In Korea it is amazing how young and old work together in movements.  It gives them more power.  Bring back these human ties.

* Recognize that nothing is more important in our lives than defending our Mother Earth and the future generations.  Money, status, cars, fancy houses and job titles mean nothing to a crashing planet.  Defend the sacred. Stick-to-it-ivness is essential.

* When you are defeated don't give up.  Struggle is part of nature.  Watch the spider spin the web - failure to make a particular connection in the web means nothing to the spider.  It keeps going until the web is done.  The tide comes in and the tide goes out.  Success and failure are part of nature.  Keep going no matter what....


Monday, February 04, 2019

Is the US preparing to invade Venezuela?

In this news report V-P Pence boasts, "All options are on the table."

The war mongers in Washington have already said that they want to control the oil in Venezuela - which has the largest supply on the planet.

They don't give a damn about international law.  They don't care how many lives would be lost if they create a civil war in Venezuela.  Hell, look at what they've done in Libya, Syria and Ukraine in recent years.  All torn apart.

As long as they get their greedy hands on the oil inside Venezuela that is all that matters.

Sadly many American people have fallen for this 'need for regime change'.  Just yesterday one liberal 'peace activist' friend told us that Maduro must go because he is a bad guy.  Now where did this person come up with that?  Of course, from the New York Times - owned by Wall Street - but some people still read it and believe everything in it!

I am quite certain that the CIA already has many 'assets' working inside Venezuela leading the destabilization effort.  Now they are mounting clandestine military operations along the Columbia-Venezuela border.  They are paving the way for a full scale invasion.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Venezuela’s US-appointed coup leader Juan Guaidó has already drafted plans for “opening up Venezuela’s vast oil sector to private investment” and “privatizing assets held by state enterprises.”

This is a criminal conspiracy and violates every tenant of international law.  The entire US government (Republicans and Democrats are supporting this operation) is proving to be nothing but hard core mobsters.

How any self-respecting person can support this is beyond me.


Italy shows respect for international law

Italy vetoes EU recognition of Guaido as Venezuela’s interim leader of Venezuela.

It's a violation of international law to try to overthrow another independent nation.

Thank you Italy for your support for international sovereignty!

Militarizing Jeju aimed at China & Russia

We support the people on Jeju Island, South Korea who are still fighting against the Navy base for US war ships.

The people are also fighting against a second 'airport' on the island - quite near the Navy base - that many feel will be used as a military air base.  I've always thought that the US admirals will want an airfield near the Navy base so they can fly in and out of Jeju without having to drive all the way across the island. 

The US Navy will also want a nearby airfield so that fighter jets can give close air support for the Navy base if and when the US goes to war with China and Russia.

The people on Jeju clearly understand they are now a target in the event of war.


Sunday, February 03, 2019

Support needed for Hawaii immediately

Dear Friends,

Something just came up of dire importance.

A bill is being slipped into the Hawaii Legislature that proposes to create a non-transparent agency through which public funds would be funneled with no public oversight to the defense industry. This would open the door for private defense contractors to spring up all over the state, with no public oversight.

Because Hawaii's economy is tourism-dependent, the Legislature accepts testimony from people who reside outside of Hawaii. It is SO SIMPLE to submit testimony -- all you have to do is check "OPPOSE." Please follow the instructions below to prevent Hawaii from being overrun with missile and satellite launch pads in anticipation of the burgeoning post-disarmament era.

The deadline to submit testimony is Tuesday Feb. 5 at 3:00 p.m. Hawaii time.

Right now, Alaska Aerospace is trying to build a rocket launch pad nine miles from Hilo, on a site that was the first place ever where hula was performed. Apparently, after two decades of sucking public funds out of Alaska, the Alaska governor finally cut off the stream of massive subsidies to Alaska Aerospace. That is one of the reasons the company is coming to Hawaii. It is looking for a new "victim." If this project, or SB999, succeeds, it will cost Hawaii taxpayers tens of millions of dollars annually in subsidies to defense companies like Alaska Aerospace.

And, in full sinister form, the hearing for the bill is precisely the same time as the public meeting for the rocket launch pad in Hilo. So there is no way that opponents here can be two places at once.


  • Fill in the blanks in the middle of the page.
  • If you are already registered, Sign In at the top right of that page
  • (Fill in your user name and password as requested.)
  • Click the orange "Submit Testimony" button in the middle of the page.
  • In the blank on the left, enter SB999
  • Click "Get Hearing"
  • For each of these bills, check "Oppose"
  • Check "No" you will not be in attendance at hearing (it's Tuesday)
  • Check "Individual"
  • Scroll down and click "Submit."

Here is a link to the bill on the capitol legislative web site:



Koohan Paik-Mander