Serious People are claiming that news accounts about Russian meddling in US elections are somehow equivalent to the Weapons of Mass Destruction stories peddled in the run-up to the US invasion of Iraq. Or a liberal version of the group-think on the Trumpian right about millions of illegal aliens voting for Hillary Clinton.
And then there are others on the right, like the Heritage Foundation, who would have us believe the special relationship between two oligarchs is somehow a good thing. They find much to admire about having a strongman in charge, as opposed to an imperfect democracy.
The reluctance of the FBI/Homeland Security report to disclose sources and methods along with the Obama’s administration’s reliance on the (often meaningless) tactic of diplomatic expulsions as the public side of their response to Russia are cited as reasons to doubt the official account.
By Veterans for Peace
The war in Syria has been ongoing for five years, with the situation in Aleppo, once Syria’s most populous city, having deteriorated over the past four years into a multi-proxy war and a humanitarian disaster.
We have seen strong disagreements within the peace movement on the reasons behind this war, and on what our response should be. Those disagreements even exist within our ranks. As we struggle through the complexities of the war, we recognize that most of us are far removed from it, fortunate to be safe in our homes and able to voice these disagreements without fear of reprisal.
However, our mission at Veterans For Peace has not changed. We oppose war. We are against the targeting of, as well as the failure to protect, innocent civilians caught up in war, or any other conduct by an individual, group or nation that could be classified as a war crime. We oppose U.S. military involvement in other countries that violates international law. [Read more…]
By Stan Levin
Regarding the proposed expansion of the military–
By all means we must ramp it up, for the following rational reasons, in no particular order:
The weapons manufacturers are in dire need of further enrichment,
and Congress needs the various kinds of kickbacks available in order to avoid being poverty-stricken; [Read more…]
Prayer gathering and vigil in San Diego on December 5
San Diego Free Press asked Stan Levin and Gil Field of San Diego Veterans for Peace to let us know about local involvement at Standing Rock. Over two thousand veterans are currently providing support and protection at the Standing Rock Sioux nation camp near the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota.
Stan and Gil put us in touch with Veteran for Peace Will Griffin whose work can be found at the Peace Report. Will provided us with the video below from his October 2016 trip to Standing Rock with Matthew Hoh, Advisory Board Member of Veterans For Peace. [Read more…]
By William John Cox
From amongst themselves, the people of the United States have empowered some of their members to enforce their laws and to police their society, but things have gone terribly awry.
The police are killing those they are sworn to protect and they themselves are becoming the target of public anger over racial inequality and discrimination. Video images of recent police shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota were followed by the mass murder of police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge, apparently in response to these shootings
The killing of an unarmed mentally-disturbed man last week by El Cajon, California police officers—and resulting civil disturbances—once again raises the question of the use of deadly force by law enforcement officers. The question involves complicated issues of law and policy, but the decision to shoot must often be made in a nanosecond. [Read more…]
By Stan Levin
Yesterday, August 31, speaking to an audience at The American Legion convention taking place in Cincinnati, Hillary Clinton offered remarks about “American exceptionalism,” a statement she often uses, and one to which I am compelled to take exception.
A moment later, and what I found particularly disturbing, she explained her meaning of the term: “It means that we recognize America’s unique and unparalleled ability to be a force for peace and progress”.
“Bannering” against upcoming airshow on August 18
By San Diego Veterans for Peace
Each year, San Diego hosts the giant Miramar Air Show, which is attended by up to 500,000 people. This air show is typical of many other air shows around the country in that it attempts to glorify and glamorize war and militarism, as well as being an excellent opportunity for defense contractors and the overall military industrial complex to sell products which lead to the deaths and injuries of so many people on earth. [Read more…]
There are 14 (15 if you count SeaWorld’s nightly show) fireworks displays on the 4th of July, plus a couple of others earlier in the weekend.
Despite the fact that fireworks of just about every kind are illegal in America’s Finest City, I can just about guarantee the knuckleheads down the street will have their own show planned.
No matter where you go, parking will be a bother as will be the traffic after the event. It’s all part of the thrill… [Read more…]
Interview conducted by James Resnick / E-International Relations
Noam Chomsky is Emeritus Professor of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Seen by many as “the father of modern linguistics”, his work as a theoretical linguist from the 1950s revolutionized the field of linguistics by treating language as a uniquely human, biologically based cognitive capacity. Through his contributions to linguistics and related fields, including cognitive psychology and the philosophies of mind and language, Chomsky helped to initiate and sustain what came to be known as the “cognitive revolution.” Chomsky has also gained a worldwide following as a political dissident for his analyses of the pernicious influence of economic elites on U.S. domestic politics, foreign policy, and intellectual culture.
The author of more than 120 books, Chomsky is widely recognized as a paradigm shifter who helped spark a major revolution in the human sciences, and is one of the most cited scholars in the last few decades. His most recent documentary, Requiem for the American Dream, focuses on the defining characteristic of our time—the deliberate concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a select few. [Read more…]
By Brian Trautman
It is becoming increasingly clear that one of the shooter’s perceived justifications for perpetrating the murderous rampage may have been intense psychological and emotional pain over his sexual orientation – a catastrophic blend of deep shame, humiliation and bitterness over his possible queerness.
Besides his apparent queer inclinations, there were several noteworthy details about the shooter’s life that were omitted during many discussions about motives: his history of domestic violence, both as a victimizer and a witness to it in childhood; his employment with, one of the largest private security firms in the world, for which he rendered services that included the imprisonment and mistreatment of juvenile offenders; and, his fascination with the NYPD, which he apparently idolized as a would-be police officer. [Read more…]
By Nile Sisters
In 1996, memories of a recently passed high school examination quickly faded as San San N., seven family members, and 35 others fled to the Burmese jungle to escape government troops. With their food supplies exhausted after 22 days, they quickly learned to forage for edibles in the jungle.
Approaching the Thai border, they slid down a mountainside to the river’s edge only to set off buried land mines along the shore, one exploding near San San. The terrified group had never before experienced such deadly weapons, which killed two members and injured several others with shrapnel. Miraculously, San San and her family crossed the river by boat and arrived alive in Thailand. [Read more…]
History is filled with the consequences of silence and passivity.
By Thom Hartmann / AlterNet
This is a particularly interesting week to be traveling across the French countryside, as news fills the papers and the airwaves of another assault weapon-of-war used in another mass shooting done by another frightened—and thus hate-filled—American.
The Europeans know well the wages of hate and fear. And it goes way back into the dim mists of history, well before the era of the names we all know so well from the 20th century.
“The Other” is the key.
Once a demagogue successfully turns a person, a group, a gender (or gender preference), a region, a nation, or a race into the Other, the consequences are terribly but consistently predictable. [Read more…]
The Washington Post joined the ever-growing list of media barred from receiving credentials by the Donald Trump presidential campaign on Monday. The Post joins the Des Moines Register, Politico, the Huffington Post, the National Review, Univision, and a host of other outlets in Trumpian political purgatory.
‘Displeasing The Fearless Leader will get you banished’ is the message. He’s already promised to “open up” the law, no doubt to construe libel in terms of what the rich and powerful may lose by others writing anything about them. Enjoy your First Amendment while you can, folks.
Today, by the way, is Donald Trump’s birthday. [Read more…]
Sanders Voters Scarce So Far
With the deadline for primary voting less than a week away, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton came to San Diego to talk foreign policy.
This talk wasn’t about what she would do as President. It was all about The Donald, who–as far as I can tell– mostly formulates his ideas by playing upon fear or flight fantasies based on too much TV drama.
Who knows what Trump believes? And that may well be the scariest part of his persona. We do know that he seems incapable of moderating his passions in the face of a perceived threat, like a reporter asking a tough question. He’s also apparently never been wrong. About anything. [Read more…]
Did Saudi Arabia Aid the 9/11 Hijackers?
All indications are that our biggest buddy in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, was directly involved with the 9/11 hijackers, and what’s more, exports its extreme form of Islam, Wahhabism, to al Qaeda, ISIS and other groups determined to wipe out the West and Western values. The Senate recently passed legislation that allows families of victims of the 9/11 tragedy to sue the Saudi government for any role it played in the terrorist plot.
The Saudis have gone so far as to say that, if the legislation is enacted, they would dump $750 billion worth of US Treasury bonds on the world market. That would blow up not only our relationship with the Saudis, but the world financial system which is predicated on the US dollar being the world’s reserve currency and its being necessary for the purchase of oil. [Read more…]
Jesuit priest lived life of peace activism
By Andrea Germanos / CommonDreams
Daniel Berrigan—Jesuit priest, peace activist, poet, author, and inspiration to countless people—died on Saturday. He was 94 years old.
When America magazine asked a then-88-year-old Berrigan if he had any regrets over the course of his long life, he replied, “I could have done sooner the things I did, like Catonsville.”
In 1968, Berrigan and eight other Catholic activists, including his brother Philip, a group subsequently known as the Catonsville Nine, took hundreds of draft files and burned them outside a Selective Service office with homemade napalm. [Read more…]
The Goldman Environmental Foundation announced Monday the six recipients of its annual Goldman Environmental Prize, the largest eco-related prize in the world. The prize, established in 1989 by the late civic philanthropists Richard and Rhoda Goldman, is also known as the Green Nobel. Chosen to represent Earth’s different geographic zones, each prize recipient will receive $175,000, no strings attached. It’s not unusual for them to donate their award or plow it back into their environmental efforts.
The recipients this year are Edward Loure, of Tanzania; Leng Ouch, Cambodia; Zuzana Caputova, of Slovakia; Luis Jorge River Herrera, of Puerto Rico; Destiny Watford, from the United States; and Máxima Acuña, of Peru.
An invitation-only ceremony tonight in San Francisco likely will be more solemn than usual. Early last month, one of last year’s recipients of the prize, Berta Cáceres, was found shot dead in a small town in her homeland of Honduras, near the border of El Salvador. The slaying is unsolved. [Read more…]
Many people cannot understand why radical Islamists are killing innocent people as happened in Brussels recently. What did these people ever do to them to justify their being ruthlessly terminated as they were just going about their everyday lives in a peaceful manner?
It’s not as though many innocent civilians in the Middle East have not had their lives terminated as they were simply going about their business. As many as 12 civilians were killed in December 2013 in Yemen when a US drone targeted vehicles that were part of a wedding procession going toward the groom’s village. Since 2002, drones piloted by the US Central Intelligence Agency and the Pentagon have killed hundreds of people in the country, mostly members of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, but also dozens of civilians, including children. [Read more…]
By Michael-Leonard Creditor
Listening to the news that March 15 was the fifth anniversary of the start of the current Syrian internal conflict it came to me that there’s no such thing as a “civil war” anymore.
Of course, I’m familiar with the joke about that phrase being an oxymoron. But, I mean an armed conflict between factions or regions within a country, rather than between separate nations.
Used to be, a nation/state could have a domestic conflict (again, I don’t mean a husband and wife argument) and it wouldn’t affect any other nation/state. But, that’s simply not true any longer. It is seeing the terrible results on the international stage of Syria’s five-year old war that creates and cements this new truth in my mind. [Read more…]
By Jack Doxey
March 16th, 2016 marks the 48th anniversary of the My Lai Massacre that occurred in Vietnam. To say that it was a sad day in the history of our country is a gross understatement. Our United States military systematically slaughtered over 500 Vietnamese women, children, infants and old men in the tiny village of My Lai.
Our country’s attention span is short; and revisiting old wounds can be painful. The result is that this event has been shoved into the “dust bin” of history.
Never the less, I beseech our government and every American citizen to not forget but instead “learn” from the events that unfolded 48 years ago in the tiny village of My Lai. [Read more…]
Is there an onslaught of American immigrants coming to Mexico? The story isn’t new. For decades Americans have been moving to Tijuana where the rent is cheaper. For local Tijuanese, this means Americans drive up their housing prices and create housing shortages.
How many Americans live in Tijuana, and in Mexico at large? The number is unknown. Guesstimates run the gamut from 5,000 to 500,000 Americans (in Tijuana alone). That’s a pretty big spread. Why don’t we know? [Read more…]
Just last week, Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov referred to NATO’s build-up near Russia’s borders as “counterproductive and dangerous.”
by Deirdre Fulton / CommonDreams
Less than a week after Russia’s foreign minister warned that NATO’s military build-up near Russia’s borders is “counterproductive and dangerous,” the United States is ramping up the deployment of heavy weapons and armored vehicles to NATO member countries in Central and Eastern Europe, the New York Times reported Tuesday.
Administration officials told the Times “the additional NATO forces were calculated to send a signal to President Vladimir V. Putin that the West remained deeply suspicious of his motives in the region,” referring to Russia’s ongoing presence in eastern Ukraine. [Read more…]