Tag Archives: Code Pink

Denver pro-war rally gets Code Pinked!


DENVER, COLORADO- The No-Peace-For-Iran rally hosted by Zionist front group Americans Against Terrorism (AAT) on the capitol steps on Sunday was outnumbered by pro-Palestinian activists shouting from below. While one racist warmonger told the crowd “pay no attention to the kebabs on the sidewalk”, a Code Pink activist was able to hold up a banner right in front of the podium.

Her banner read: “STOP THE NEXT WAR NOW! WARMONGERS BEGET TERRORISTS!” but it took the audience a minute to register that her message clashed with theirs. Then she was grabbed and pulled forcibly away.

The AAT rally was much smaller than the year previous. Enthusiasm for Christian Zionist end-time-ism, Islamophobia, anti-Iran sentiment, and Standing-with-Israel, appears to be expiring.

Another measure of the success of the counterprotest was AAT deciding to take down a large Israeli flag which they’d draped on the capitol as a backdrop when antiwar activists arrived with a similarly blue-striped banner reading “Israel is a terrorist state”. Along with Code Pink and Occupy Denver, counterprotest included many Jewish peace activists, even a couple who were Israeli.

David Anderson, who took the photograph above and who insisted the pro-war goons unhand their unwelcome guest, described the scene thus:

It should be noted that when Republicans and Israel call their group “Americans Against Terrorism”. They mean the opposite, They want to bomb and terrorize Iran just as they have done in Palestine for years. This is a tired old trick that the citizens are catching on to.

The AAT would not exist, were it not for the funds from Israel. Another smoke screen by Israel is to call their group “Americans”. This is called; whip your friends into a frenzy, then get them to fight your battle for you.

And there you have the reason this one small woman with a message of truth strikes fear into the hearts of liars and hypocrites.

Code Pink thinking with its vagina, our apologies in advance for the language

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?

Chicago G8 protest planners offer city guarantees of usual ineffectual actions

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.

Nine months out, it appears activism’s old guard is determined to blunt all real resistance welling in American youth. The Tribune found another normalizing voice from UNAC which disavowed any recourse but nonviolence. WTF? It’s one thing not to encourage violence, another to promise to “back off from any violence.”

Hello? Activists with broken spirits need to STFD and STFU. Let younger, hotter heads give you a lesson in courage and purpose. If you are over thirty, hold yourselves among the fucks responsible for this mess. Who are you to deny the young their righteous rage?

As elder activists, precisely what wisdom is it you think you can impart? Have you stopped one war? Slowed imperialism? Ended nukes? Saved the whales? Halted global warming? Attended to anything but the erosion of democracy, the social safety net and the environment? Your exalted nonviolence neither delivered India from class exploitation nor ended racism in America. Stick with fundraising, educating, inspiring others, drawing your peers into social networking; lead, but not by edict, and not by a consensus dominated by your peers. Put your dogma aside for the young leaders, let them make their own mistakes. I hope you will at least admit they can’t fail more miserably than you.

At Sunday’s meeting, the United National Antiwar Committee spokesman acquitted himself when confronted by a young gentleman representing an anarchist entity. Committee member Ashley Smith’s full quote had been: “We will not be the ones to initiate or perpetrate any violence.” And: “We will back off from any violence.” But when pressed at the meeting, he explained that organizers hoped the event would be safe for families, but that younger militants could exercise their freedoms like anybody else. I paraphrase.

I’ll qualify my criticism by pointing out that a number of the organizers were personal victims of recent FBI home invasions, so they are fully justified in having to distance themselves from being interpreted as advocating violence. An additional challenge is presented by an adversarial corporate press determined to squeeze whatever soundbite it wants to discredit or hobble protest.

Of course I’d prefer activists recused themselves from addressing the subject of violence/nonviolence, instead of alienating potential allies by being deliberately exclusionary. And by potential allies, I mean the only allies that will get the movement anywhere, the NEXT GENERATION, because who else are you expecting?

Viva Palestina shows Code Pink how solidarity works

Gaza Freedom March breakers
Egyptian authorities in El-Arish tried this evening to decapitate the Viva Palestina aid convoy on its final leg toward the Gaza border. This was the successful strategy Egypt used to divide the Gaza Freedom March a week before, but the activists held strong, and it didn’t take a referendum for the isolated group of 157 to stick up for the 400 others waylaid in Syria. ReadingPSC tells the story from El-Arish.

When the convoy was forced to leave Egypt’s Red Sea port to reenter Syria and travel by ferry from Lattakia to Egypt’s port at El-Arish, only a minimum number of convoy participants were permitted to stay with the vehicles. The rest learned they could only rejoin the convoy by air. The same plane was to fly repeated trips, carrying one fourth of the number each time. But that’s not how it worked out.

On the second flight, the plane was forced back to Syria due to engine problems, and now remains grounded. As it stands tonight, 3/4 of Viva Palestina remains in Syria. Meanwhile, the Egyptians tried to compel the first group to depart for Rafah and man the convoy without their comrades, telling them the extra 400 would be denied permission to follow.

Of the convoy participants issuing updates, Readings PCS and Derry to Gaza are safely in El-Arish, while York to Gaza et al will fly from Damascus in the morning.

If there remain further obstacles for the convoy, Viva Palestina is recommending you contact the Egyptian embassy/consulate available to you, to press Egypt to honor its commitment to let the aid convoy through and help break the siege of Gaza!

Reading PSC printed this encouragement from Noam Chomsky:

Dear Convoy: a message from Noam Chomsky!…

Despite the media blackout, which is a disgrace, this is turning out to be a really spectacular triumph, I think, and it’s hard to express properly my admiration and respect for those who are directly engaged.

It has to be a shot in the arm for the people in Gaza, and might stir up some opposition to the dictatorship in Egypt, which is exposing its brutality daily — to everyone except the US media (hope it’s better elsewhere). And I think a lot of people are going to come back home really invigorated.

Good luck in what lies ahead.

Code Pink and the Obama Left

GFM video update from Sam HusseiniAs Code Pink capitulates in Cairo, taking consolation for eking a 1/14 size march as a compromise with Egypt, where originally they promised to march regardless the permissions granted, I’m reminded of Code Pink’s role in 2008, protesting war while cheerleading for Obama. Code Pink was one of the strongest organizing forces at the Denver DNC demonstrations, but inside their clubhouse at the Mercury Cafe, decorations revealed their crush on the Man From Change. The antiwar movement needs players like Code Pink, and the indefatigable Medea Benjamin, but as the denouement of 2009 felled the last Obamapologists, I think they’ve lost dibs on decision making.

Groups like Code Pink can assist with action planning, but if they insist on a voice pretending to represent the goals of real activism, no. How can Code Pink et al be considered longer reliable partners at the grass roots? In Cairo yesterday, over a thousand activists wanted to hold strong, but 87 Judases had Code Pink’s approval, to board Egypt’s counter-activism ploy.

The predicament reminds be of the pharmaceutical commercials where a middle-aged man explains the grief to which he’s come, on account of neglecting his health. Now he’s found a pill to stay healthy and he wants to share his advice with others. What, pray tell, entitles him to give any health advice at all? He’s actually disqualified himself. Lipitor, I think is the latest pitch. Yes, he was an idiot, but he got a second chance with Lipitor, now he recommends it. We trust him — why?

Pink goes to war

VietnamThe color pink seems incongruous juxtaposed with war. Code Pink banks on the contrast being inherently diametric. But just as pink can be enlisted to oppose war, it can serve to humanize, even glamorize it.
 
Remember the Afghanistan theater photo snapped of a US soldier wearing pink boxers and flip-flops while he stood guard on a rampart? Disarming wasn’t it? Here’s its antecedent from the Vietnam conflict. We’re searching antiwar archives for tools to fight this war, our bastard adversaries are already there.

Army Specialist Zachary Boyd was worried when his picture made the front page of the New York Times. Boyd thought he’d be in trouble for being shown out of uniform.

“I can assure you that Specialist Boyd’s job is very safe indeed,” said Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who instead praised the soldier for making American bravery look so nonchalant. “What an incredible innovation in psychological warfare,” said Gates.

See Ann Wright in action or at the PPJPC

DNC arrest-bushCOLORADO SPRINGS- The PPJPC is collecting money to bring noted antiwar activist Ann Wright to Colorado Springs. They’re hoping to have her speak for a fundraiser. I’ve had a chance to meet the retired colonel/diplomat in person a number of times. You can too, with no fund-raising necessary. Go to an action.

The first time I met Wright was in Crawford Texas when a delegation from Colorado Springs joined Cindy Sheehan’s encampment outside George Bush’s ranch. Ann Wright and Medea Benjamin were the primary organizers behind Sheehan’s “Camp Casey” PR coup. When our group convened our own Camp Casey at Nevada Avenue and Dale Street, Wright was our liaison to the continued national effort.

Most recently we ran into Wright at the DNC in August. Ann Wright brought the white faceless masks to the Denver demonstrations. She spoke at the rallies and participated in several marches. Even now, whether the issue is closing Guantanamo or saying no to the Fed, you’ll see Wright’s squad with their masks, representing the faceless victims of America’s destructive imperialism.

While I look forward to Ann Wright’s upcoming visit, I think it is unfortunate that local energy for activism be dissipated with an in-house lecture. What would Wright rather see us doing? Hopefully she can illuminate the hole into which the PPJPC is burying its head. Perhaps a study of her successes can show that a nonviolent ethos need not limit one’s actions to the avoidance of confrontation.

Fodor’s guide to Denver and the DNC

Marie
To answer the obvious questions. If you’re worried about tear gas, saturate a bandana in Apple Cider Vinegar, and bring swimming goggles. For a tip of where you’ll find the action in the next several days, below is a list of where legal observers are planning to be. Meaning, where there might run afoul. Otherwise check with Recreate-68, Codepink, UFPJ and Unconventional Action.

The purpose of legal observing is to protect the civil liberties of political activists. Legal Observers do not intentionally become involved in the actions or intervene in any confrontations with police or others. Legal Observers strive to refrain from actions that could be construed as participating in the demonstration.

Legal Observers can make the following contributions:

– Legal Observers may deter police misconduct,

– Legal Observers may testify about their observations,

– Legal Observers may assist activists who are detained, arrested, or who need medical attention, by alerting the appropriate support teams associated with the demonstration.

CALENDAR

Sunday August 24, 2008

1. END THE OCCUPATIONS RALLY & MARCH
This is a permitted rally and march organized by the Re-Create 68 coalition and other groups. Due to expected large number of participants, many Legal Observers are needed. Please check in at the office at approximately 9:00 a.m. to obtain materials and hats. Please return materials to the PLP immediately after the March. For details about speakers and plans, go to: www.recreate68.org.

Rally at 9:00 AM
March steps off from the Capitol steps at 10:30 AM. End at approximately 3pm. Location: West Steps of the Capitol Building

2. CODE PINK FREEZE TO STOP THE WAR
CHECK IN AT NOON AT PLP OFFICE. 16th Street Mall

3. FUNK THE WAR DANCE FOR PEACE
This action is comprised of four feeder marches which will converge on the 16th Street Mall. It is sponsored by Tent State University. For details, see: http://tentstate.org/funkthewar.htm The Funk marches shall depart the following locations around 1:00 PM. CHECK IN AT NOON AT PLP OFFICE

The marches will converge at Union Station at 2:00 PM.
– Union Station (17th & Wynkoop) Women’s Convergence led by Code Pink
– Skate Park (2205 19th Street, near Coors Field) Youth Convergence w/ Ralph Nader
– MEPS Center (19th & Stout) Iraq Vets Against the War and Allies
– Curtis Park (30th & Curtis in Five Points) Power to the People led by C. McKinney

3. UNCONVENTIONAL ACTION – RECLAIM THE STREETS
From 3:00 to 5:00 PM. FLOATER LEGAL OBSERVERS CHECK IN AT 2 PM AT PLP. Legal observers may be dispatched to locations downtown, particularly near delegates’ hotels, where coordinated direct action and protests may take place after the End the Occupations march, per Unconventional Action (U/A) (see: http://www.unconventionalaction.org/downloads/Disrupt_the_DNC.pdf)

4. TENT STATE UNIVERSITY MOVE TO FREEDOM CAGE
CHECK IN AT 10:30 PM

Monday August 25, 2008

1. PROTEST THE FREEDOM CAGE
March sponsored by Re-Create 68 to call attention to the undemocratic clamp down on free speech, in particular the abysmal cage erected near the Pepsi Center where non-delegates have been relegated to a fenced-in pen obstructed by the massive Media tent. This march will leave Skyline Park South (15th & Arapahoe) at 9:00 a.m and go to the Pepsi Center. CHECK IN AT 8 AM AT PLP OFFICE

2. FREEDOM MARCH TO SUPPORT POLITICAL PRISONERS
Rally and speakers begin at 10:00 AM. Location: Civic Center Park amphitheater. March will proceed from Civic Center Park to the Federal Courthouse (19th & Champa). CHECK IN AT 9 AM AT PLP OFFICE

3. SHAKE YOUR MONEY MAKER
Demonstrators will surround the Denver Mint at approximately 5:00 PM in an effort to draw attention to issues of wealth and poverty. CHECK IN AT 4:30 PM AT PLP OFFICE. The Denver Mint is located at 320 W. Colfax and Cherokee Street.

4. NO BUSINESS AS USUAL
Theatrics and street actions at various locales, such as fundraisers, in downtown Denver sponsored by Unconventional Action. Begins at 6:00 PM at Civic Center. FLOATER LO’S CHECK IN AT 5:00 PM

5. FESTIVAL OF DEMOCRACY MUSIC SHOWCASE
3pm to 9pm at Civic Center Park. We will be dispatching a few Legal Observers to this location during the concerts. Please notify Heather about your availability.

6. TENT STATE UNIVERSITY AT THE FREEDOM CAGE
CHECK IN AT 10:30 PM AT OFFICE

Tuesday August 26, 2008

1. PROCESSION FOR THE FUTURE Puppet March
Starts at Civic Center Park at 9:00 AM.
CHECK IN AT OFFICE AT 8:30 AM

2. CODE PINK
CHECK IN AT OFFICE AT 10:30 AM

3. CONFRONT THE SPECTACLE
Marches beginning at approximately 3 PM near or at the Pepsi Center. Sponsored by Unconventional Action. Technical blockades, street theater, and other diverse actions may attempt to block the flow of delegates fro their afternoon platform meetings to the convention hall.

Legal Observers CHECK IN AT 2 PM AT PLP

3. TENT STATE
CHECK IN AT 10:30 PM for move from Cuernavaca Park to Pepsi Ctr Freedom Cage

Wednesday August 27, 2008

1. ECO ACTIONS – ALL DAY
Direct action for the environment all day downtown. Polluters and greenwashers’ corporate headquarters downtown Denver. Check in at 10 AM and throughout the day at PLP offices

2. WOMEN IN BLACK
12-2 PM at Skyline Park. Check in at 11:30 AM at PLP Office.

3. IRAQ VETS AGAINST WAR MARCH 3-6 PM
** LEGAL OBSERVER CHECK IN AT FOURNEY’S TRANSPORTATION MUSEUM ON BRIGHTON BLVD AT 3 PM.

4. CRITICAL MASS BIKE RIDE – NO WAR, NO WARMING

6 PM. Check in at PLP at 5:00 PM for details on locations.

Thursday August 28, 2008

1. DNC MOBILIZATION FOR JUST AND HUMANE IMMIGRATION REFORM
Potentially massive, epic march for immigrant rights. For details, see: www.weareamericadnc.org
Legal Observers meet at PLP office at 8:00 a.m. March Step-off at 9:00 a.m. from Rude Park (2855 W. Howard Place). Rally to follow at La Alma / Lincoln Park (W. 12th Ave. and Mariposa St)

2. LOCKSTEP BEHIND THE PARTY
Action at the Pepsi Center at 11:00 AM. Further details on this action needed.

3. END WHITE SUPREMACY – Media Savvy Actions sponsored by Unconventional Action.
Times and locations to be determined.

5. MARCH TO INVESCO FIELD
March starts at Lincoln Park (Mariposa Street) at 2:00 PM and goes to Obama’s acceptance speech at Invesco Field.