The Israeli War on Palestine, made possible by US support, is beginning to become a regional conflict. In addition to this, the US is backing conflicts in Ukraine targeting Russia, in the Horn of Africa and in Latin America and increasing its aggression against China. Congress is appropriating hundreds of billions of dollars for the Pentagon while the majority of people in the United States struggle to meet their basic needs each week and the climate crisis worsens. To raise awareness about this, Veterans for Peace is organizing a Peace Walk 2024 from Augusta, Maine to Washington, DC, arriving in July to protest the NATO meetings being planned then. Clearing the FOG speaks with Tarak Kauff and Ellen Davidson, two of the Peace Walk organizers.
Cuba defended Palestine at the Security Council open debate on Peace through dialogue: contribution of regional, sub-regional and bilateral agreements to the prevention and peaceful settlement of disputes. Ambassador Gerardo Peñalver Portal, First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Permanent Representative of Cuba to the United Nations, pointed out that Israel’s indiscriminate bombardment of the Palestinian population and the destruction of homes, hospitals and civilian infrastructure, as well as the deprivation of water, electricity and fuel services to the Palestinian population, must be stopped immediately.
Since the February 2022 entrance of the Russian military into the battle, the United States government has injected over 100 billion dollars in arms and other forms of assistance to the conflict. A significant portion of that assistance took the form of small, but powerful armaments. Many of these hand held weapons possess incredible destructive capabilities. There are shoulder fired anti-aircraft weapons known as "man pads" that can easily take down a civilian passenger aircraft and anti-tank rockets that could be used with devastating effect on a convoy of civilian vehicles such as the ones that many diplomats in this room routinely utilize to traverse their respective nations. The injection of these military grade weapons into an environment as unstable as Ukraine is beyond irresponsible.
Washington, D.C. - A group of 50 activists and Vermont constituents staged a sit-in inside Senator Bernie Sanders' office on Wednesday, demanding the senator to call for peace and diplomacy in Ukraine instead of more weapons and war. The sit-in resulted in the arrest of 11 activists, including an 89-year-old CODEPINK peace activist. The group was joined by Green Party Presidential Candidate Dr. Cornel West in the Senate lobby for a prayer vigil before the sit-in. The prayer vigil and sit-in were part of a week of action that included an antiwar rally on Tuesday night featuring Dr. West, Claudia de la Cruz, Lee Camp, Medea Benjamin, and Eugene Puryear,.
Recently, in Taiwan, the government unveiled its first home-built submarine. In Japan, the government will upgrade civilian airports and seaports to dual military use in preparation for conflict in Taiwan. The U.S. and allies maneuver to contain China, Russia, and North Korea, while the latter band together against the former’s economic sanctions and military threats. Both blocs test the strength and resilience of the region’s stability. And while North Korea has been the regional bogeyman for decades, if war breaks out, it will likely be in Taiwan. While China has called for an “indivisible security” where security is dependent upon the security of all, U.S. discourse has centered around the containment of China and deterring war… by preparing for it.
We are entering the end stage of the 30-year U.S. neoconservative debacle in Ukraine. The neocon plan to surround Russia in the Black Sea region by NATO has failed. Decisions now by the U.S. and Russia will matter enormously for peace, security, and wellbeing for the entire world. Four events have shattered the neocon hopes for NATO enlargement eastward, to Ukraine, Georgia, and onward. The first is straightforward. Ukraine has been devastated on the battlefield, with tragic and appalling losses. Russia is winning the war of attrition, an outcome that was predictable from the start but which the neocons and mainstream media continue to deny.
We will never know the world that could have been had President John F. Kennedy’s assassination never taken place, but an inkling of how things could have been different can be found in the final months of his life. In his new book, To Move the World: JFK’s Quest for Peace, Jeffrey Sachs unearths JFK’s final political campaign—to establish a secure and lasting peace with the Soviet Union. How far did JFK’s efforts go? What sort of progress was made on ending the Cold War, not through the collapse of the Soviet Union, but rather through mutual cooperation and understanding? To answer these questions and more, Jeffrey Sachs joins The Chris Hedges Report.
As it did last year, the 2023 United Nations General Assembly has been debating what role the United Nations and its members should play in the crisis in Ukraine. The United States and its allies still insist that the UN Charter requires countries to take Ukraine’s side in the conflict, “for as long as it takes” to restore Ukraine’s pre-2014 internationally recognized borders. They claim to be enforcing Article 2:4 of the UN Charter that states “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.”
Movement. It’s essential, Satish Kumar tells me as we stroll along the North Devon coast, sea air swirling, waves smashing the rocks, wildflowers quivering in the breeze. “Only by moving can things change and transform. And walking is movement of the body. When you’re walking, you’re transformed. Your mindset, your health, your ideas. You get new, fresh thinking.” Now 84 years old, Satish has moved more than most. Born in Rajasthan, northern India, he started walking as a child (“My mother was a great walker. If somebody offered her a horse, she’d say, how would you like it if a horse rode you?”). Then, aged nine, he became a Jain monk: “For nine years, no bicycle, no train, no car, no nothing,” he recalls.
Last month CNN published a poll revealing 55% of people surveyed in the United States do not support spending more money on the Ukraine war. A tone-deaf White House responded by requesting another $24 billion, mostly for weapons and military training that would bring the Ukraine war tab for US taxpayers to nearly $140 billion. CODEPINK, a member of the Peace in Ukraine Coalition that represents over 100 anti-war organizations, is committed to raising up the majority opinion that the U.S. needs to stop fueling this war. We condemn the illegal Russian invasion but we believe that this conflict has no military solution, only stalled counter-offensives, random drone attacks and profound heartache for the families losing their loved ones, their homes and their livelihoods.
July 27, 2023 is a historic date for the American veterans who participated in the Korean War. It was the 70th anniversary of the signing of the temporary Military Armistice Agreement that stopped the fighting after two years of over 575 talks between warring parties. Three days of events in Washington, DC from July 26-28 will marked the 70th anniversary with a call for a peace agreement to end hostilities on the Korean peninsula. I was in Korea 70 years ago and I witnessed the cease fire. We U.S. soldiers in Korea welcomed the armistice and were told that a peace agreement would be negotiated in quick order. It never happened.
On 20 July, the United Nations (UN) released a document called A New Agenda for Peace. In the opening section of the report, UN Secretary-General António Guterres made some remarks that bear close reflection: We are now at an inflection point. The post-Cold War period is over. A transition is under way to a new global order. While its contours remain to be defined, leaders around the world have referred to multipolarity as one of its defining traits. In this moment of transition, power dynamics have become increasingly fragmented as new poles of influence emerge, new economic blocs form and axes of contestation are redefined.
This year is incredibly important to me and the Korean people. Next Wednesday, July 27th is the 70th anniversary of the armistice of Korean War, the longest war in American history. I turn 34 this year, almost half of that number. And my grandmother, who left a memoir that I finally found in 2015, was aged 70 years when she published these words, translated by me: I only understood what that war was, felt it against my flesh only after I came down from the mountains. Nobody was whole after the war. It spared no one. People either lost their lives, lost their families, lost their legs or arms, or were irrevocably scarred in their hearts. People who survived the war were like people who had already lost their lives once and came back from the dead.
The knives are out again for those advocating for peace on the Korean Peninsula. Almost eight years to the day, I wrote “The Knives are Out For Those Who Challenge Militarization of the Korean Peninsula,” about Washington Beltway pundits and those on the payroll of organizations and corporations that make money out of the U.S. bureaucracy’s need for an enemy. These groups had focused their outrage and diatribes at Women Cross DMZ for organizing the 2015 trip to North and South Korea and daring to challenge the status quo of U.S. policy toward North Korea. Eight years later as Women Cross DMZ and other Korea peace advocacy groups are organizing a National Mobilization to End the Korean War July 26-28, 2023 in Washington, DC, the knives are out again.
The weekend before the NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, Global Women for Peace United against NATO representing women in 35 countries met July 6-9, 2023 for three days of peace discussions in Brussels, Belgium. I am writing with details of each of the excellent panels and webinars to provide a sense of the numbers of women from around the world who participated in the program. Six webinars provided opportunities for women and men worldwide to hear from community members who are concerned about the militarization of our world and wars that threaten the survival of the human race. We will continue to meet to strengthen our international/global solidarity and plan for actions July 9-11, 2024 in Washington, DC for the 75th anniversary of NATO.