The Antiwar Movement Then & Now

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By Staff of Vietnam Full Disclosure – It is offered—not in expectation of agreement—but to provoke a serious discussion about the current state of antiwar politics. Burns and Novick in their PBS documentary: The Vietnam War could not ignore the antiwar movement, but exhibit little interest in its dynamics, except in its supposed hostility to American GIs. Since my interest still lies in how to build a more effective antiwar movement, I want to focus on the lessons learned and not learned by the Vietnam antiwar movement as a prelude to exploring how we might move forward to confront the multiple wars and threats of war that beset our world. Of course, there was not one unified antiwar movement, but a conglomeration of tendencies featuring contending critiques, strategies and tactics. What follows is an attempt at a succinct, dispassionate description of those tendencies, which no doubt risks over-simplification. I will look at three general perspectives. I will begin with a critique of tendencies with which I was associated. The first set of tendencies included the anti-imperialists, militants, and Marxist-Leninists. Members of these overlapping, but distinct groupings, all grasped the depth of the problem that the war in Vietnam exposed. The war was not a mistake or an aberration from the general direction of US global policy. Its goal was to dominate the world and, in this particular case, to gain a strategic foothold in mainland Asia.

United Against War And White Supremacy: Korean Americans Speak Out

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By Staff of Zoom in Korea – Donald Trump recently responded to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s mention of direct communication channels with North Korea by tweeting, “I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man.” He went on, “Save your energy Rex, we’ll do what has to be done!” Americans are increasingly worried about a possible nuclear war with North Korea. But some appear unconcerned about the potential fallout, as, in the (in)famous words of Trump, “If thousands die, they’re going to die over there.” To Korean Americans, such callousness is dehumanizing to the people of Korea and Asia Pacific. The so-called “thousands over there” are our families and friends. A war in Korea would be devastating to Koreans in diasporas around the world and will almost certainly involve the surrounding region, including China, Japan, and Guam. On October 10, HOBAK (Hella Organized Bay Area Koreans) invited Korean Americans to join a conversation via twitter about U.S. militarism and provocations in Korea and around the world: As tensions continue to rise, and threats of war continue, it is critical to uplift Korean voices and their stories, and to ground ourselves in more comprehensive analyses of the current situation.

Holding Out A Vision For Solutions Not Endless War

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By Will Griffin for Veterans For Peace – Economic conversion, defense conversion, or arms conversion, is a technical, economic and political process for moving from military to civilian production. The sixth Maine Peace Walk for Conversion, Community and Climate is concentrating on the serious need to convert Bath Iron Works (BIW) to peaceful and sustainable production.

Armistice Day

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By Staff of Veterans for Peace – Veterans For Peace calls on all members and all peace-loving people to take a stand for peace this Armistice (aka Veterans Day), Saturday November 11. We call for nationally coordinated local actions to demand diplomacy not war with North Korea, and the abolition of nuclear weapons and war. Veterans For Peace joins with the wider peace movement for actions before and after November 11th. In 2017, ninety-nine years after the end of World War I, “the war to end war”, the world finds itself on the brink of a nuclear war, again. The threat of a horrific nuclear exchange is possibly higher than it has ever been. The President of the United States Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to attack North Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea – DPRK), going so far as to say, while speaking to the U.N., that the U.S. will “totally destroy” the country. North Korea has also caused great alarm with its own threats, while testing long-range missiles and nuclear bombs. Twitter confrontations and saber rattling have only served to escalate tensions. The road to war is a slippery slope on which one misstep can lead to the beginning of catastrophic war. Even the use of conventional weapons would lead to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. Millions will die if there is a nuclear exchange.

Anti-war Nuns Carry Message Of Nuclear Disarmament To Colorado Springs

Sister Carol Gilbert, center, and Sister Ardeth Platte, withi the late Sister Jackie Hudson, left, at the N-8 missile silo in Weld County. Submitted photo

By Debbie Kelley for The Gazette – The sisters also will hold free public presentations: at noon Oct. 9 at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs in the Kraemer Family Library; at 7 p.m. Oct. 10 at Colorado College’s Gaylord Hall, on the main floor of Worner Campus Center, 902 N. Cascade Ave.; and a potluck dinner at 6 p.m. Oct. 11 at 420 Mesa Road. “We’re coming as peacemakers and peace advocates, to teach and show our concern,” Platte said. “Our politicians could be heroes of these times, if they start working with nations rather than against nations.” Leading up to the Colorado Springs events, Platte and Gilbert will conduct a vigil on Oct. 7 at the N-8 missile silo in Weld County, where in October 2002 they poured blood on a Minuteman III missile loaded with a 20 kiloton nuclear bomb, one of 49 high-trigger nuclear weapons stored in Colorado. Their action symbolized taking it offline. They were convicted of sabotage and received harsh sentences: 41 months for Platte and 33 for Gilbert. In September 2000, Platte, Gilbert and three other Catholic nuns were arrested for civil disobedience at Peterson Air Force Base and jailed. The charges were subsequently dropped. They’ve also served time in other states for nonviolent acts of civil disobedience.

Armistice Day 99 Years On And The Need For A Peace To End All Wars

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By David Swanson for World Beyond Wars – Believe it or not, November 11th was not made a holiday in order to celebrate war, support troops, cheer the 17th year of occupying Afghanistan, thank anybody for a supposed “service,” or make America great again. This day was made a holiday in order to celebrate an armistice that ended what was up until that point, in 1918, one of the worst things our species had thus far done to itself, namely World War I. World War I, then known simply as the world war or the great war, had been marketed as a war to end war. Celebrating its end was also understood as celebrating the end of all wars. A ten-year campaign was launched in 1918 that in 1928 created the Kellogg-Briand Pact, legally banning all wars. That treaty is still on the books, which is why war making is a criminal act and how Nazis came to be prosecuted for it. “[O]n November 11, 1918, there ended the most unnecessary, the most financially exhausting, and the most terribly fatal of all the wars that the world has ever known. Twenty millions of men and women, in that war, were killed outright, or died later from wounds. The Spanish influenza, admittedly caused by the War and nothing else, killed, in various lands, one hundred million persons more.” — Thomas Hall Shastid, 1927. According to U.S. Socialist Victor Berger, all the United States had gained from participation in World War I was the flu and prohibition.

No To War Call To Action

We say No to War sign seen at a 2007 anti-war protest. (Photo by Thiago Santos on flickr)

By Staff of No To War – The Afghan war, which has been a thoroughly bipartisan effort, was originally railed against by Donald Trump when he was running for president. He claimed to be against U.S. troop involvement in Afghanistan. Now he is moving forward with a “secret” plan of escalation that will also include Pakistan. He says the secrecy is to keep the “enemy” from knowing his plans, but it also keeps the U.S. people from knowing what he is doing in our name and from judging the human costs for the people of Afghanistan, Pakistan and the United States. What we do know is that military escalation has repeatedly failed to bring peace in Afghanistan. It has caused more destruction and more deaths of civilians and soldiers alike and has cost trillions of dollars that could be spent on meeting basic needs here at home while repairing the destruction we have carried out abroad. Trump also emboldens the war machine here in the US against Black and Brown people and immigrants by fanning white supremacy and xenophobia and continuing the militarization of the police and ICE to incite racially-motivated violence and justify repression, including mass incarceration and mass deportations.

Black Alliance For Peace Demands U.S. Aggression Against North Korea Cease

A peace mural is painted near the road leading to Planadas, Colombia, where a peasant uprising in 1964 led to the birth of the FARC. | Photo: AFP

By Ajamu Baraka for BAP – September 5, 2017—The Black Alliance for Peace is resolute in its opposition to United States-led imperialism, no matter which nations may be among the targets. We contend no justification exists for U.S. government interference in the affairs of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), better known as North Korea. President Donald Trump differs from his predecessors only with his intemperate language, threatening “fire and fury” and asserting that the U.S. military is “locked and loaded.” The corporate media may lampoon his choice of words, but they do not oppose the premise that this country has the right to tell North Korea and every other sovereign nation what it can and cannot do. Like the United States, North Korea has the right to test and develop as many weapons as it chooses. North Korea does not need another country’s permission to enhance its arsenal. Given the United States’ history of aggression, it would appear wise to do so. Any country deemed an enemy of the United States that does not have a strong defense is in danger of ending up like Iraq or Libya—invaded or destroyed by other means. The U.S. military is the greatest threat to world peace. With more weapons—nuclear and conventional—than any other nation in the world, the United States is armed with the capacity for complete global destruction multiple times over.

Korean Americans Denounce US War Threats In Coordinated Protests

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By Staff of Zoom In Korea – On August 14–ahead of the 72nd anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule–Korean Americans across the United States rallied to demand the U.S. government stop war provocations against North Korea and start talks towards peace. Korean Americans and other anti-war peace activists in New York, Washington DC, and Los Angeles held coordinated protest actions in their respective regions. Following the impeachment of former South Korean President Park Geun-hye and the election of liberal Moon Jae-in, Korean people around the world had high hopes for the resumption of North-South engagement. Many had expected North, South, and overseas Koreans to come together for a joint conference in Pyongyang or Seoul on August 15 in commemoration of Korea’s liberation. Just as Korea’s liberation was cut short by the arrival of U.S. occupying troops in 1945, however, the prospect of peace on the peninsula is once again thwarted, this time by Trump’s threats of “fire and fury like the world has never seen.”

Why We’re Kayaking To The Pentagon, And Why You Should Join Us

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By David Swanson for World Beyond War – One week before the #NoWar2017: War and the Environment conference, to be held September 22-24 at American Univeristy, World Beyond War will work with the Backbone Campaign and other allies to organize a flotilla for the environment and peace, bringing kayaktivism to Washington, D.C., on September 16th. Why? What’s the relevance? Who’s drilling for oil on the Potomac? Actually the Potomac is central headquarters for oil consumption, as the top way in which we consume oil is through preparing for and waging wars — wars that are often in large part motivated by the desire to control more oil. Behind the Pentagon is a 9/11 memorial, but there’s no memorial to the future Pentagon disaster that will come in the form of flooding. The U.S. military is the top consumer of petroleum around and would rank high by that measure in a list of countries, were it a country. The military is the third worst polluter of U.S. waterways. The United States could convert to entirely sustainable energy for a fraction of the U.S. military budget (and earn it all back in healthcare savings). Most countries on earth have the U.S. military in them. Most countries on earth (the entire countries!) burn less fossil fuel than does the U.S. military.

Monthly Rally In Newark Against US War Escalations / Threats #NJSaysNoToWar

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By Staff of NJ Against US War on Syria and in the Middle East – Largely with the local support of the Peoples Organization for Progress, anti-war activists including Newark residents and those from surrounding communities have converged on the Martin Luther King Jr. monument for protests against the various escalations and threats of war by the US administration 3 times since early April. The events have also received strong support from NJ Peace Action and the Green Party of New Jersey. We are now considering a proposal to make this type of activity a monthly event, picking a particular Friday of each month. The proposal is not just to show up for an hour plus protest and then go home but to incorporate into the effort a concerted organizing drive with the goal of connecting to the local pedestrian and vehicle traffic and to integrate the war issues we are raising with the related devastation of the war related economic issues and how the war economy directly and adversely impacts the Newark community. The monthly event should include organizing during the “in between” times and in the hours before each gathering as well as during the gathering to reach out and connect with pedestrians, shop owners, labor organizations, schools, religious institutions, housing and other outlets in the surrounding blocks.

Ditch Both War Parties: Anti-War Coalition Maps Independent Course To Peace

We say No to War sign seen at a 2007 anti-war protest. (Photo by Thiago Santos on flickr)

By Glen Ford for Black Agenda Report – On June 16 through 18, the United National Anti-War Coalition (UNAC) will hold its annual conference, under the theme: “Stop the Wars at Home and Abroad: Building a Movement Against War, Injustice and Repression.” For three days, the convention center in Richmond, Virginia, will likely be the sanest building in the nation, the one place where you won’t be subjected to a barrage of warmongering fantasies about Russian threats to a non-existent American democracy. Instead, hundreds of activists from a broad range of organizations will be hard at work building alternatives to the Democrats and Republicans who have plunged the world into endless war and condemned most people in the United States to a dismal future of economic insecurity, the worst health care system in the developed world –- and if you’re Black, the ever-present threat of sudden death at the hands of police. The all-seeing, eternally-listening, omnivorous data-crunching mechanisms of the national security state that was once justified by manufactured fears of Soviet Russians, then exponentially expanded to cage, kill and contain Black revolutionaries, and then vastly reinforced again to criminalize Black people as a group, creating the world’s biggest mass incarceration police state…

Newsletter: The State Of The Union And Movement

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By Margaret Flowers and Kevin Zeese. The United States is a failing empire: the domestic economy has fallen to a level equivalent to a developing nation for most of us while the stock markets, especially for weapons-makers, are at record levels. It has taken decades for the US to get here. Long-term mis-leadership created the environment where a “Make America Great Again” presidential candidate, whose fame came from being a reality-TV star and someone who put his name in giant gold letters on every business he ran, could con his way into office in large part because he is not a politician. Trump’s election woke a lot of people up and sparked new levels of activism. As we reach the one-hundredth day of this new administration, it’s a good time to reflect on the state of the union and of the movements for peace and justice.

Where Your Dollars Are Going: Why Some Antiwar Activists Are Withholding Taxes

Antiwar activists fed up with seeing 23 percent of their income taxes go toward US warmongering are refusing to pay. (Image: JR / TO; Adapted: Lance Cpl. Clare J. Shaffer / US Marine Corps, Pixabay)

By Lindsay Koshgarian for Truthout – Among the marches, petitions and call-in campaigns that comprise much of the Trump resistance movement, one resistance tactic gets little attention: withholding taxes. As the US seems ready to slide into yet another Middle East war in Syria while preparing for massive cuts to government programs at home, what role does tax resistance play in opposing regressive and violent policies? While being anti-tax is typically associated with conservatism, there is a small but longstanding tradition within the progressive movement of withholding taxes — specifically, war taxes. How does tax resistance work, and does it result in a lack of support for government programs that most progressives support and would like to see grow? How much of our taxes go to war, the military and militarism anyway, and how much to worthy programs like education, aid for struggling families, the environment and more Paying income taxes may not usually spur introspection, but it might if Americans realized that, for example, they are working 27 days out of every year to pay taxes that support war profiteers.

NJ Against US War On Syria And In The Middle East

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By Staff of NJ Against US War on Syria and in the Middle East and Central Jersey Coalition Against Endless War – The event attracted several non-traditional protesters in addition to the “usual suspects” – those of us that have been protesting war for years. This is a very significant matter because it demonstrates that a more organized approach to mass organizing can result in a massive anti-war uprising which is the only way forward toward the world’s survival. There was a student from a Jersey City college that has only been in the US for 3 months. A college roommate of mine joined us – after I invited his participation just this morning. Several other first time participants were on board and there was a decent number of youth in the ranks. Plus my younger son was out to his first ever protest! As usual, there was a range of diverse and on point presentations from participants, we had an open mic format for that. We were also pleasantly entertained by one of New Brunswick’s finest veteran activists Albert Valeri who accompanied his mostly a capella performance of a song in support of the NO DAPL movement with occasional pulls on his harmonica.