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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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. @BruceKGagnon

Sunday, January 15, 2023

Vietnam vet at Kirtland AFB gate in New Mexico

 


 

Bob Anderson served in the U.S. Air Force and saw combat during the 1967-68 Tet Offensive in Vietnam. Later, he helped form the Vietnam Veterans Against the War. He traveled to Wounded Knee, South Dakota in 1973 to support the indigenous struggles for sovereignty. In 2006 he was arrested and banned from the University of New Mexico for pointing out it was wrong for the university to be supporting the Reliable Replacement Nuclear Warhead (RRW) without public comment. He is co-director of Stop the War Machine which has organized major demonstrations opposing Star Wars and the wars of empire. He lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico and regularly protests at Kirtland AFB. Bob serves on the board of the Global Network.

 

 He writes:

This angle of targeting Biden directly has a lot of Dems running for an alibi, but it really works at the base gate.  Lots of honks, thumbs up and head nodding.  I think it is not just the partisan angle but people are truly afraid of where this is going could hurt us all.  

I wore an EOD hat I picked up at a VA canteen vendor (explosive ordnance disposal, my AF job, bomb disposal) and I had one guy stop and talk to me a bit with a thumbs up.  He was an EOD at Kirtlandā€¦ very interesting.  He was not partisan but just GI relating.  He looked at my grey hair and wrinkles and said Indian Head?  I said yes.  Indian Head, MD right out of DC was where we all trained in the Vietnam War days.  He knew I was an old timer.  He said he had been through the new school at Eglin, FL.  It was an interesting experience to say the least, cross generational job relation with a political message.

But I think even though we did not have a large number come out to help, due to short spontaneous organizing on my part to capture the MLK message, it was really more powerful than a large gathering. Why?  We focused on one theme and I as a GI standing there in my EOD hat really caused a lot of head turning and people asking each other in the cars, what are they saying.  This going to base gates in my view is like what helped you all stop the Vietnam War by reaching out to individual GIs and it causes a lot of problems for the war machineā€¦. everyone going in or out will, we hear, go back and ask others what was those people out there for?  And so they get to talk on base, which is a place where such talk is not normal.  With just a few hours and a simple message sends a wave through the war machine and hopefully reaches GIs, as you know from your own work years ago.  I know it had that effect on me too.  Someone told us years ago that when there are protests outside a base a message goes to the Pentagon HQ.  If this is true it is a way to send a message deep into the bowls of the empire.  Hope.

The left type demos send a confused ideological, not direct political message of the moment.  I think for awhile I and a couple people may go around to other gates.  It is good to feel we made some inroads this week.  Thanks to you and the folks there for helping us to get out more here.

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