Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure.

Saturday, March 06, 2021

Good week of activism - even from home

 


During this week we had a series of workers coming to our house in Bath, Maine to do some jobs. Since we bought this house last summer we've been steadily fixing things around this 100-year old home.

We had two new windows installed to replace leaky ones, had a major plumbing job done, a new door installed and also had some windows measured for new blinds that help keep the cold out of the house.

While at the house each of the workers initiated a discussion about US military and foreign policy.  One of them, a self-declared Trump lover, asked me about Biden's recent bombing of Syria.  We went over to my world map and had a 15-minute dialogue about what the US imperial project is all about as the Pentagon encircles Iran, Russia and China with its string of more than 800 bases.

The window installer asked me if I was busy on space issues (he had previously been to our house and talked politics).  He went on to tell me how his daughter is a big space fan and he mentioned that Elon Musk is launching thousands of satellites.  I responded that these launches are increasingly punching a larger hole in the ozone layer and exacerbating the problem of crowded orbits which will ultimately make the current space debris problem dramatically worse.

I handed the four workers the latest copy of our Space Alert newsletter as they were leaving - with the window installer saying that his daughter will be anxious to read it.

So in spite of the pandemic - masking and social distancing - and few chances to get out and talk to new folks, it felt good this week to be able to speak with four guys who are not members of the choir.  I found each of them to be open minded, eager to take our newsletter and most importantly of all - fed up to the gills with politics in Washington.

So even though I am largely stuck at home I was still able to do some good work.

Bruce

PS We got a check for the Global Network in the mail yesterday and in the envelope was a clip of the donor's letter to the editor in the Gainesville, Florida newspaper.  She wrote:

Better use of tax dollars

News coverage of the latest NASA Mars launch fails to acknowledge the use of plutonium to power this and other questionable ambitions.  The associated risks are real and arguably unnecessary.

Bruce Gagnon, coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space, makes a plea for sanity in urging that Mars can wait while tax dollars are spent taking care of the legions of people without jobs, health care, housing, food, water or heat.

Patricia Mason, Gainesville

Story time corner


 
This video presents Dr. Seuss metaphorical look at The Cold War, titled The Butter Battle Book.

Friday, March 05, 2021

Imperial highlights

 


  • Fifty-five years ago the fate of Africa was irrevocably altered when the CIA sponsored a 1966 coup d’état against Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, former Prime Minister of Ghana and Pan-Africanist visionary who was voted as “Africa’s Man of the Millennium.” At least 1,600 Ghanaians died in the coup and scores more were injured. Nkrumah wrote in his book Dark Days in Ghana that:

"It has been one of the tasks of the CIA and other similar organizations to discover … potential quislings and traitors in our midst, and to encourage them, by bribery and the promise of political power, to destroy the constitutional government of their countries."

 John Stockwell, a CIA officer in Africa had recounted the plot to undermine Nkrumah’s government and to sow anti-Nkrumah sentiments among Ghanaians. Stockwell wrote: 

"Howard Bane, who was the CIA station chief in Accra, engineered the overthrow of Kwame Nkrumah. Inside the CIA it was quite clear. Howard Bane got a double promotion, and was awarded the Intelligence Star for the overthrow of Kwame. The magic of it was that Howard Bane had enough imagination and drive to run this operation without ever documenting what he was doing and there wasn’t one shred of paper that was generated that would name the CIA hierarchy as being responsible."
 

  • Just over two months into the new year, 2021 has already seen a flurry of public banking activity across the US. Sixteen new bills to form publicly-owned banks or facilitate their formation were introduced in eight states in January and February. Two bills for a state-owned bank were introduced in New Mexico, two in Massachusetts, two in New York, one each in Oregon and Hawaii, and Washington State’s Public Bank Bill was re-introduced as a “Substitution.” Bills for city-owned banks were introduced in Philadelphia and San Francisco, and bills facilitating the formation of public banks or for a feasibility study were introduced in New York, Oregon (three bills), and Hawaii. Read full article on ScheerPost here.  


  • “We should not expect any fundamental alteration” in US foreign policy under President Joe Biden, said Ajamu Baraka, national organizer of the Black Alliance for Peace, at a joint webinar of the US Peace Council and the Venezuelan section of the Committee for International Solidarity and Struggle for Peace. “Both of these imperialist parties are committed to the same fundamental agenda: to maintain and expand US global colonial capitalist hegemony,” said Baraka, in a talk entitled, “The People’s Struggles and the Emerging Situation in the United States.” Hear it all here
  •  "American people are very much like the children of Mafia bosses who don't know what their fathers do for a living, and don't want to know -- but then wonder why someone just threw a firebomb through the living room window." - William Blum
  • UK Trident submarine commanders unleashing a nuclear attack cannot be held responsible under law for their actions, according to the Ministry of Defence’s former nuclear policy chief. Rear Admiral John Gower, who was a submarine commander and a leading ministry official, has dismissed the argument that Trident commanders would be in ‘legal jeopardy’ if they launched nuclear warheads as a first-strike against an enemy. But this has alarmed former nuclear submarine commander, Robert Forsyth, who warned that it put current Trident commanders in an “impossible position”. If they unquestioningly obey an order to fire they could be guilty of a “war crime”, he said. The argument between two former senior naval officers over the responsibility for turning the key to launch nuclear-armed missiles has erupted at length on the website of the Nautilus Institute, a military think tank. See more here.

 



  • On December 24th, Israeli settlers–likely from the outpost of Havat Ma’on–entered Palestinian lands in the South Hebron Hills village of Atuwani in order to uproot and steal approximately 34 olive trees. Of those olive trees, 24 had been planted by the Good Shepherd Collective through our olive tree planting program, a program by which international donations are turned into trees to secure vulnerable Palestinian lands. The attack on these trees, as well as their theft, represents exactly what Israeli settlers have been doing across the West Bank for decades: expand their control of land and resources. Over the years, Israeli settlements have crept across the South Hebron Hills, built on lands belonging to the villages next door, using similar tactics to intimidate the local Palestinian communities. In particular, settlers find a double success in sabotaging Palestinians’ ability to grow and sustain crops: it harms the community economically, while clearing land for use by the settlement. Click here to sign a petition.

Bruce

Thursday, March 04, 2021

Film about the GI anti-war movement

 



F.T.A. is now playing in virtual cinemas: bit.ly/ftafilm

“The Show the Pentagon Couldn’t Stop!” In 1971, at the height of the Vietnam War, Jane Fonda and Donald Sutherland toured an anti-war comedy show across Southeast Asia. It was directly engaged with and inspired by veterans against the war and, naturally, it upset U.S. military higher-ups. 

The Fuck The Army tour was highly controversial and was a huge success among stationed soldiers. In spite of positive reviews and business, director Francine Parker’s film version was quickly taken out of circulation due to political pressures and has been difficult to see for decades.

F.T.A. has now been fully restored in 4K by IndieCollect and is preceded by a new video introduction by Academy Award-winning actor and activist Jane Fonda, which provides historical context and explains the impetus that sparked the creation of the F.T.A. troupe. 

Good historical review

 


Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are in an active rivalry to create vast new satellite networks in space, reminding one of the 19th Century railroad battle between Rockefeller and Harriman. 

Musk, in talking to a reporter from Bezos' Washington Post, dismissed them, saying "Give my regards to your puppet master". Find out what's at the bottom of the antagonism.

The author of the video is a conservative and while I don't agree with everything he says I must acknowledge he is quite an interesting person. 

Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Important up-coming event

 

Speakers So Far:
Medea Benjamin, Kathy Kelly, David Swanson, Norman Solomon, Peter Phillips, Bruce Gagnon, Jim Lafferty, Gerry Condon, Marcy Winograd, Jeremy Kuzmarov & Michael Novick – More Coming

Scholars & Citizen Testimonials Will Help Us Learn The History of The Cold War & Its Relevance To U.S. Political Corruption & To Today’s Global Chaos.

We Welcome PRE-RECORDED or IN-PERSON TESTIMONY on:
CIA-backed Global Interventions of The Cold War; McCarthyism and the crushing of labor and the left in the U.S.; the Cold War nuclear legacy; Hollywood and the Blacklist; the “Red Scare” of the 1930’s; and the red-baiting of social activists as far back as 1850!

If You Are Interested In Endorsing or In Providing Citizen Testimonial,
Contact Rachel Bruhnke at: sojournerrb@yahoo.com

I think it’s a great idea! Ideologically, it’s right on.”
Oliver Stone on The Cold War Truth Commission

Hosted by Rachel Bruhnke of Witness For Peace Southwest
Endorsed by CODEPINK, World BEYOND War, RootsAction, Veterans For Peace, Peacemakers, Covert Action, Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power In Space and ADDICTED To WAR

Register Here: www.codepink.org/03212021

Corporate takeover of the planet

 


Corporations have stepped beyond lobbying governments. They are integrating in policy-making at the national and international levels. 

Decisions historically taken by governments are increasingly taken by secretive unaccountable bodies run by corporations says Nick Buxton describing 'The Great Corporate Takeover' which is being mapped by people's movements and scholars. 

Excellent and interesting interview.

Tuesday, March 02, 2021

We are what we learn

 


Because of computerization, mechanization, robotization and now AI, most humans are not needed as workers anymore. 
 
So Mr. Big is thinning us out. 
 
The wars on Native Americans taught Washington's elite alot about how to control people in a fascistic way. 
 
They know quite well that by reducing the public's caloric intake, reduction of good medical care, and worsening environment, folks will die younger. 
 
The NAZI 'reign of terror' refined the dark techniques which were then infused into the US military/political system (post-WW II) when the Army's 'Operation Paperclip' smuggled 1,500 Nazi militarists into the US - even President Truman knew nothing about the program. (This operation was a key factor in the creation of the CIA which became the secret government/deep state.)
 
That infusion of Nazi energy (along with our own elites) has turned America away from everything it might have ever hoped to truly be. 
 
Today Wall Street is desperate to try to hang on to global control - but it is fading fast.

We fight on because we must take care of one another and our Mother Earth.
 
Bruce

View from inside the gut of the empire

 


  • I'm reading a fascinating book about two Americans who moved to China during Mao's rise to power following WW II.  A woman named Joan Hinton (who was a nuclear physicist and worked on the Manhattan Project) and her dairy farming husband Sid Engst.  She was offered a teaching job in China but turned it down and worked on a dairy farm with her husband near the Mongolian border. While pregnant Joan was attending Lamaze classes in Beijing. (Lamaze was created by the former Soviet Union.) Fascinating read. The book is called 'Silage Choppers & Snake Spirits: The Lives & Struggles of Two Americans in Modern China'.  They stayed in China their entire adult life.

In 1952, while in Beijing to deliver her baby Joan was invited to attend the Asian and Pacific Peace Conference. Once it became known that she had worked on the Manhattan Project (that developed the atomic bomb) she was asked to speak to the assembled. Here are some of her words (that became quite controversial when reported back in the US):

...as one who touched with my own hands the very bomb which was dropped on Nagasaki, I feel a deep sense of guilt and shame at the part I played in this crime against humanity as a whole, and this crime against the Japanese people in particular....And I am ashamed to admit it took the horror of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki to shock me out of this ivory tower of complacency, to shock me into the fundamental realization that there is no such thing as "pure" science; that science has a meaning only in relation to its service to mankind; only in so far as it helps to create a rich and beautiful new world. 

Joan Hinton, Former Fellow in Physics, Institute of Nuclear Studies, University of Chicago

  • I am scheduled to speak about space issues in a couple up-coming webinars.  Some are now listed (and others will soon be added) on the new Global Network website Events page which can be found here.
  • Reading an article about the new Space Force really summed up my disgust with the entire project.  SpaceWar.com posted this: "Because of its small size and high dependency on advanced technology, the US Space Force is perhaps better positioned than any branch of the US military to become a cash-cow for private industry".  Look out fellow citizens they are going to fleece us....
  • There is some good organizing going on in big cities across the US opposing the massive Pentagon budget.  In November in New Haven, Connecticut peaceniks organized a referendum asking the voters if they wanted to seriously cut the military budget.  People resounding voted YES.  In Brooklyn, New York similar work is also underway. Local and state governments are strapped for cash and most of the nation's social needs have been dumped by the feds onto the laps of local authorities.  So it is a good strategy to bring these issues of endless war spending to the public by tying it to unmet social and infrastructure needs. Especially now with all the economic dislocation going on.
  • In recent days we are again seeing more US-NATO supported shelling by the puppet Ukrainian regime of its own Russian speaking citizens who live near the Russian border in the Donbass region. Why? What was the crime of the civilians in the Donbass? A couple things quickly come to mind.  First, the US-NATO want to draw Russia into a shooting match which would then 'justify further encirclement' of Russia along their borders. Secondly, they want to force Russia to spend more on the military which will impact its already heavily sanctioned economy.  US-NATO don't give a damn about the lives destroyed by this ugly, illegal, and immoral strategy.

Bruce 

Monday, March 01, 2021

Protest at Space X in California

 

 

Satellites, rockets, and 5G on earth and in sky.
What is the cost to health and the environment?
5G SpaceX Satellite Protest


March 19, 2021 
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
1 Rocket Road, Hawthorne, California
Parking limited—Uber or bus recommended


Join us and people around the world as we demand an immediate halt to 5G satellites & technology on earth & in space unless proven safe... as we call for safer and wiser technology options.

Up to 100,000 low earth orbit satellites, complementary earth base stations & millions more cell antennas (aka User Terminals) have been approved by the FCC. SpaceX and other companies are now deploying satellites to provide 5G wireless internet to every corner of the globe, blanketing the entire planet in wireless radiation with potentially devastating consequences to all of life.

Environmental dangers abound. They include:

  • depletion of the ozone layer
  • cyberattacks costing $ trillions
  • pollution from rocket launches (exhaust gases, black carbon, alumina, toxic chemicals)
  • space debris & collisions – Kessler Effect
  • vast increase in energy consumption
  • climate impacts from manufacturing & disposal of all connected “things” & infrastructure
  • interference with the global electrical circuit
  • potential disruption to satellites & connected IoT networks from solar flares
  • effects on navigation & survival of wildlife
  • further militarization of space 
 
Get more information here
 

The Global Network supports this protest and encourages its members/supporters in the area to attend.  If you plan on going please let us know.

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Why is this happening?

 

 

What has happened to our once brilliant blue skies? How many have noticed the change? Why are skies now so often filled with the lingering, expanding, and sky covering remnants of jet  aircraft dispersions?

Atmospheric particle testing has now conclusively proven that the lingering spreading jet aircraft trails are not just condensation as we have been told. Over 70 years ago global powers committed the planet and populations to a climate engineering experiment from which there is no return. The intentional dimming of direct sunlight by aircraft dispersed particles, a form of global warming mitigation known as “Solar Radiation Management”, has and is causing catastrophic damage to the planet's life support systems and human health. 

What are the consequences of conducting these programs?  Why aren’t scientists or official sources disclosing the ongoing climate engineering operations? Who is responsible for carrying out these programs?

Sunday song