So we want a first woman president? How about a first anti-Monsanto president. Or a first Antiwar president. Or a first anti-usury president. How about those firsts FIRST? How about the first people-first president FIRST!
Happening upon a Middle Eastern restaurant advertising itself to be Israeli-owned, I wondered, as a BDS-adherant promoting boycott, divestment and sanctions to pressure the state of Israel to abandon apartheid and illegal occupation, if this business fell under the BDS dragnet. BDS targets Israel and not just products from the Occupied Territories as moderates might prefer. At times BDS also focuses on prominent Zionist enterprises whether they be Israeli or American. Very likely these proprietors evangelize for Israel, but I thought a broader principle suggested itself: LET’S DO SUPPORT ISRAELIS WHO DON’T LIVE IN ISRAEL! Wouldn’t that be precisely the goal?! But a word about other Israelis for whom BDS is asked to make an exception, the oft-celebrated Israeli Left. Are we supposed to be reassured that many Israelis do not support the ethnic cleansing perpetuated by their right wing government? What of the purported majority of Americans who oppose our continued wars and our drone extrajudicial executions? If populations cannot prevent the crimes perpetrated in their name, indeed the responsibility falls to who other but them, does their objection earn any points until they act?
Rand Paul, like his dad, Ron Paul, has built his stature up with the constant myth amongst so many US gullibles, that he is supposedly somehow Mr. Antiwar! But it is all skin deep this picture of what Hard Right Rand is really about. This Business Insider report Inside Rand Paul’s Overnight Transformation Into A Pro-Israel Defense Hawk kind of spills the beans about this prospective Republican candidate for President next election time. Rand Paul is no more antiwar than Barack Obama and his cabinet are. To believe that he might be so is akin to believing in the Tooth Fairy.
The US government is allied militarily with some of the rattiest dictatorships of the world, as our criminal politician leaders tell us that it is them who supposedly are bringing democracy to the rest of the world! US backed Pakistan dictatorship halts Pakistani citizen antiwar demonstration against bombing by the US of their own country! See reporting about how the thuggish Pakistani government has stopped a protest against the US government’s bombing of its own citizens. Does that look like democracy in action either in the US or Pakistan? It doesn’t to us here at Not My Tribe. Pakistan halts anti-drone protest led by ex-cricketer Imran Khan.
Many in the US government and European governments would like for Turkey to go and duke it out in Syria, but ordinary Turkish citizens are not in support of this war fever. See Protesters March Against War in Istanbul as Tension With Syria Escalates … The Obama regime has done little in its four years in office to diffuse the Pentagon sponsored war making in the Middle East and Asia. In fact, the Obama Administration seems to be using Syria as a stepping stone for a coming attack against Iran.
Just kidding, about the anatomical reference giving offense. Not kidding about Code Pink “Women for Peace” thinking with their vaginas, making it the theme to their callout for the Tampa RNC in August. Agreed, men thinking with their reproductive organ is far more common, and generally dishonorable, but turnabout is fair play isn’t it? Usually formidable antiwar powerhouse Code Pink is dropping its protest of drones and military intervention for the RNC, in favor of conferring legitimacy to the GOP’s 2012 wedge issue, the War on Women. Does this presage a tempered message at the DNC, a la DNC 2008, where Barack Obama got a pass from Code Pink though he was the antiwar candidate in hope only?
The propaganda is now flowing full time, all designed to convince the US and European populations that a war against Syria and Iran is a necessary imperialist intervention. BUT IT IS NOT, and Russia and China are blocking the geo-political attack of the US Empire against them, by way of the US fomenting war against Syria and Iran as well. Vladimir Putin's spokesman has said Russia is not considering changing its stance on Syria and that any attempts to apply pressure on Moscow are "hardly appropriate".
So, it was on or just before ANZAC Day four years ago, the last veteran of Gallipoli died. And I truly do get a bit sad and angry, betimes, when these guys are held up as a reason FOR more wars, more militarism, more police state bullshit. Sometimes I choke when singing Eric Bogle’s song, “The Band Played Waltzing Matilda”. There were 2 sections of the song:
“I looked at the place, where me legs used to be” and “But as year follow year / More old men… disappear / Someday no one will march there at all.”
The pro-death contingent appear to have targeted Tribe as “anti-soldier”, imagine that if you will. Just can’t BUY better publicity, but they’re giving it free of charge. They keep regurgitating the same vomit they’ve spewed last month, and the month before and the months before, ad infinitum, but they can’t be Pro-Death AND Pro-Life, be it of soldiers or the unborn. One of the most remarkable journalistic “oopsie” moments of the Operation Iraqi Freedom Removal was the admission live on camera, about two hours before the bombs started dropping and six hours before the official deadline, that the ONLY businesses open in Baghdad were gun stores and obstetricians. Striking a triple whammy to Extremist Dogma.
In protesting war, it’s not enough to say you “support the troops”, even as you advocate to “bring them home”. Soldiers see criticizing war as directed at them because it underminds the purity of spirit they want to go about their destructive missions. Don’t expect to get anywhere with trying to explain legal or moral issues. Their military indoctrination omits understanding war crimes like collective punishment, disproportionate force, massacre, murder, and by the looks of it, even rape of your fellow female soldiers. No, today’s soldiers want enablers to help them “embrace the carnage” so they can “do what they have to do” wherever they’re deployed. Even stationed stateside, they’re unencumbered by critical thought, they certainly don’t want to hear yours.
Have Americans ever been so deluded before? At the last Occupy Colorado Springs activity I was at, person after person came up to me as I held a sign saying PEACE and informed me all knowingly that ‘The War’ was now all over with. When I replied to them that it surely was not, they shook their heads with disgust that I should be so ignorant as to think that! And even as the US is at war with much of the world and preparing for new ‘interventions’ in multiple places, many of the American public seemingly believe that the Republicrats are presenting them with 2 outstanding and shining Peace candidates for the presidency. Have we all fallen down the rabbit hole into Alice’s Wonderland? I begin to wonder?
SUPPORT THE TROOPS? Oh let’s address this buggaboo straight off. Apparently you can’t protest war without disrespecting the troops, that criticizing the soldiers’ mission means to criticize them for following their orders. Okay… if it is indeed all grey area for those lacking grey matter, then I suppose you can’t support the troops. And so I WON’T, NOT A LICK. The killing needs to stop. Expressing “support” for those doing the killing gets you more killing. Here are two complementary banners to protest the use of drones to increase our remote killing:
Paired with the followup below, because what’s an antiwar message today without the obligatory “support the troops” nonsense:
OCCUPIED COLORADO SPRINGS– On February 4, OCS joined the international day of protest to decry NO WAR ON IRAN!
The Occupy Wall Street NO COMMENT art show reminded me of the antiwar gallery exhibit we featured at our own peace encampment in 2005. Among my favorite pieces was an interactive self-performance piece called HAVE YOUR CAKE, which featured a festive party table adorned with a sheet cake whose icing featured the likeness of a wounded Iraqi boy, into whom attendees had to cut to have a slice. Of course, no takers.
From Cindy Sheehan, Facebook, Aug 29, 7PM PST: “I just got a notice from the IRS that I owe them 104 grand and they are going to levy my bank accounts and property. I don’t have any property and there’s less than 150.00 in my bank accounts. Looks like Fed Prison is in my future. I would rather go to prison than fund the crimes of this government. I am going to send them a notice that they owe me infinity dollars for killing my son.”
When the MF IRS goes after the highest visibility, loudest voice, friend of world leaders, first name world celebrity, icon of American antiwar and anti-imperialist movement… WHO CAN DISSENT and feel safe?
(Cindy- “Infinity” won’t compute and doesn’t allow for a ceiling, I’m sorry to suggest you put a value on Casey’s head, but how about 1.7 Trillion? Obviously they can manage that.)
Organizers meeting today to plan against next year’s G8 summit in Chicago hit the ground running –backward. On Friday a spokesperson for one of the coalition partners offered this assurance to the Chicago Tribune: “Our goal is a legal, permitted, family friendly march where people can come and have their voices heard in a safe environment.” Interesting. The objective of successful past anti-globalization protests has been no less than to shut the undemocratic summits down.
This is a still from John Pilger’s THE WAR YOU DON’T SEE, recently blocked from its US debut in Santa Fe. Why? Because such images will stop war. In particular this shows a terrified Iraqi girl held at gunpoint as her home is searched. I wonder how many such scenes have been captured by embed cameras or GI cellphones. Western eyes are being inoculated to violence and gore, our victims dehumanized, foreign civilians reduced to collateral, but it appears our media managers worry Americans cannot yet resist the ordinary tears of children. Imagine such scenes of heartbreak gone viral across the web. Never mind atrocity or war crime, show us emotional responses with which we can identify. The mass of digital records could doubtless overwhelm Wikileaks. These are not top secret, yet nearly any have been leaked. My appeal to the cowardly US soldier, or the damnable media embed, leak the footage which haunts you already, your PTSD may be the contagion to end public support for our state sponsored terrorism.
How is an antiwar message advocating a metaphysical ideal any different than saying that My God is better than Yours? My pacifist colleagues have distilled their protest slogan to “Nonviolence Works” which I believe is as provable as “Jesus Saves.” Neither ideology can reduce beyond the afterlife. My god says love your neighbors. So what? Mine says kill my enemies. And what’s more, God forgives me, particularly what I do in His name. To assail American Christian crusaders with with the logic of moral superiority is to argue that my god can lick your god. Believe me, God America is kicking Muslim ass on that front every day. Beside which, at best you’re telling someone who wants to believe 2 plus 2 equals 3 that 3 & 1/2 is close enough.
COLO. SPRINGS– Tough crowd at this week’s antiwar bannering: the usual plentiful honks of support, but now intermittent servicemen heckling in crew-cutted indignation. And we haven’t yet inaugurated our WARMONGERS GO TO HELL banner. The best the driver of a white van-load of them could muster was “Semper Fi” so they must have been Marines because they shout it like it means “America! Fuck Yeah!” Are they taught it’s abbreviated Latin for Always Faithful? I believe Fidelis is the root of Fido.
Every Friday at 4:30pm, at one of four key intersections downtown. The weekly sequence: 1) Cascade & Uintah, 2) Uintah & Nevada, 3) Nevada and I-25, and next week, 4) Bijou & Cascade. (Repeat)
COLORADO SPRINGS- Outnumbered! Though we comprised a perfectly respectable half-dozen on the hastily organized protest of FBI tactics meant to intimidate, scouting the city blocks which formed our periphery revealed motorcycle cops poised unseen behind corners. Is that merely obligatory, post-9/11, when activists speak out against intelligence agencies? Except for a building security guard who warned us the elevated planters along the sidewalk were private property, CSPD and state troopers kept an unobtrusive distance — well, enough to mask their number. Our sign-holding was the usual peaceful vigil, but our minders parked a solitary unmarked cruiser smack in our faces to keep up with [menacing] appearances. The proverbial chill on free speech.
COLORADO SPRINGS – JANUARY 25 – Protest the recent FBI raids and the DOJ grand jury subpoenas aimed at intimidating members of antiwar and Palestinian rights groups. Join Coloradans For Peace and compatriots beneath the windows of the FBI field office, located in the Plaza of the Rockies downtown, the complex where activists have been prevented from visiting their senator’s office, mostly a mall of investment bankers and brokerage firms. Not without irony, the main facade is named for war profiteer consultancy Booz Allen Hamilton. Come Tuesday Jan 25, from 4pm to 5pm. Meet on the NE corner of Tejon & Colorado.
Some consider the FBI to be the lesser of the US intelligence community’s seventeen known evils. Shall we draw the line at surveillance, infiltration and instigation of peace advocacy groups? Eric Holder’s Department of Justice won’t go after war criminals, torturers, or any facet of President Obama’s accelerated abuses on human rights. But they want to target humanitarian groups in hopes of tying their social causes to “terrorism, ” the traditional authoritarian label for political rival.
Does this need repeating every Martin Luther King Day? It’s all I can do to resist meeting my compatriots at the MLK breakfast this morning with signs to decry their tomfoolery. MLK was a man of action not sleep walking. He wanted to march against war, not with it, holding wind chimes. To host remembrances of MLK in the context of peaceably enabling military imperialism, you’d have King remembered as a Army chaplain. MLK knew complicity when he saw it.
SEPTEMBER 20 — Let he who is without complicity in the war crimes committed for Western Imperialism cast the first huzzah. It will be a small party. It is not the custom for murderers to attend the wake.