Activism

Submitted by tnjp on March 28, 2014 - 6:15pm.

Watch the hearing - Right to Heal Initiative for a People's Hearing on the Lasting Impacts of the Iraq War, Phil Donahue moderating Speakers: Yanar Mohammed is president and co-founder of the Organization of Women's Freedom in Iraq (OWFI). Falah Alwan is President of the Federation of Workers Councils and Unions in Iraq (FWCUI), one of Iraq’s largest labor unions. Iraq Veterans Against the War.

Submitted by tnjp on October 20, 2013 - 1:19am.


Don't just watch it, DO SOMETHING: http://TheNSAvideo.com

The U.S. Government has turned the Internet into something it was never intended to be: a system for spying on us in our most private moments. Out of control government surveillance is a dangerous form of censorship. Don't be intimidated. Share this video.

Narrated by Evangeline Lilly

Brought to you by Fight for the Future and Demand Progress.

Submitted by tnjp on August 22, 2013 - 6:39pm.

"...I will serve my time knowing that sometimes you have to pay a heavy price to live in a free society. I will gladly pay that price if it means we could have country that is truly conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all women and men are created equal."

The decisions that I made in 2010 were made out of a concern for my country and the world that we live in. Since the tragic events of 9/11, our country has been at war. We've been at war with an enemy that chooses not to meet us on any traditional battlefield, and due to this fact we've had to alter our methods of combating the risks posed to us and our way of life.

I initially agreed with these methods and chose to volunteer to help defend my country. It was not until I was in Iraq and reading secret military reports on a daily basis that I started to question the morality of what we were doing. It was at this time I realized in our efforts to meet this risk posed to us by the enemy, we have forgotten our humanity. We consciously elected to devalue human life both in Iraq and Afghanistan. When we engaged those that we perceived were the enemy, we sometimes killed innocent civilians. Whenever we killed innocent civilians, instead of accepting responsibility for our conduct, we elected to hide behind the veil of national security and classified information in order to avoid any public accountability.

In our zeal to kill the enemy, we internally debated the definition of torture. We held individuals at Guantanamo for years without due process. We inexplicably turned a blind eye to torture and executions by the Iraqi government. And we stomached countless other acts in the name of our war on terror...

Submitted by tnjp on August 16, 2013 - 7:39pm.

View slideshow on Flickr

A NEW CAMPAIGN: THANK YOU, EDWARD SNOWDEN

The U.S. government threatens to put Edward Snowden behind bars for life for having dared to reveal to the American people that the government has been secretly spying on each one of us.

The politicians are trying to whip up hatred against Mr. Snowden.

"He's a traitor," stated Republican leader John Boehner on ABC. Not to be outdone, Diane Feinstein, Democratic chairperson of the Senate Intelligence Committee, called Snowden's truth-telling revelations "an act of treason."

We need to send a different message from the People of the United States to Edward Snowden and to the world at large: We thank you and we oppose the surveillance state.

Because of Edward Snowden's heroic action to tell the truth, a nationwide debate has finally opened up on the massive covert spying operation against the American people.

The American people have not given their consent to the government's mass dragnet operation to collect, store and analyze their emails and their telephone calls.

The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund has initiated a new advocacy campaign, www.ThankYouEdSnowden.org. The ThankYouEdSnowden.org website allows you to post your thanks, upload a photo of yourself with a handwritten message of thanks, download posters and petitions that you can circulate and collect signatures, or simply sign and click to sign on to the simple campaign message: #ThankYouEdSnowden....

Submitted by tnjp on August 4, 2013 - 8:38pm.

PJ Harvey releases Guantánamo song for Shaker Aamer


Shaker Aamer

No water for three days.
I cannot sleep, or stay awake.

Four months hunger strike.
Am I dead, or am I alive?

With metal tubes we are force fed.
I honestly wish I was dead.

Strapped in the restraining chair.
Shaker Aamer, your friend.

In camp 5, eleven years.
Never Charged. Six years cleared.

They took away my one note pad,
and then refused to give it back.

I can't think straight, I write, then stop.
Your friend, Shaker Aamer. Lost.

The guards just do what they're told,
the doctors just do what they're told.

Like an old car I'm rusting away.
Your friend, Shaker, Guantanamo Bay.

Don't forget.

Submitted by tnjp on July 11, 2013 - 4:37pm.

Oliver Stone on NSA Spying

Some have claimed that Americans don't care about the revelations that the NSA is conducting massive surveillance on our private communications. But Oliver Stone isn't buying it.

In a video produced with the ACLU, Director Oliver Stone shares some of his reflections on the NSA spying program and the disastrous legacy of unchecked government abuse of power. All Americans should stand up for our civil liberties at this critical moment in history, he says-- by asking our representatives in Congress to roll back the surveillance state.

Sign the petition to Congress

Submitted by tnjp on July 8, 2013 - 3:07pm.


Yasiin Bey appears in a video launched today demonstrating the Standard Operating Procedure for force-feeding prisoners on hunger strike at Guantanamo Bay.

Made by human rights charity Reprieve and Bafta-award winning director Asif Kapadia, the film shows US actor and rapper formerly known as Mos Def experiencing the procedure. You can watch it above, or online, here.

The video launches a campaign to rally support for Guantanamo prisoners who are on hunger-strike in protest against their detention without charge or trial. The campaign asks members of the public to undertake their own short-term hunger-strikes in solidarity with the prisoners, and donate the time to support them, while also raising the issue with their political representatives. The website [http://www.standfastforjustice.org/] consolidates the total number of hours of hunger-striking undertaken in this way.

Prisoners in Guantanamo have been hunger-striking since February this year, with the total number involved now well over 100. The strike is in protest against their ongoing detention, despite the vast majority of prisoners never having been charged or tried, and over half the remaining population having even been cleared for release by the US Government. However, their peaceful protest has met with an increasingly aggressive response from camp authorities, including force-feeding and violent procedures known as 'forcible cell extractions’ (FCEs).

Commenting, Reprieve's Director and attorney for Guantanamo prisoners Clive Stafford Smith, said: "President Obama could take the steps needed to release cleared prisoners from Guantanamo any time he likes, but so far has lacked the political courage to do so. We hope that public solidarity with the hunger-strikers in Guantanamo will persuade him to change his mind."

Submitted by tnjp on July 3, 2013 - 8:46pm.

Today Is July 4th; And It's Time To Restore The 4th Amendment

Today is July 4th, people are gathering around the country -- both offline and online -- to tell the government that it's time to finally start obeying the 4th Amendment again. If you click the image above, it takes you to www.CallForFreedom.org, a new campaign from Fight for the Future. You should also check out www.RestoreTheFourth.net

Submitted by tnjp on July 1, 2013 - 9:03pm.

StopWatching.Us - Sign TODAY!

The revelations about the National Security Agency's surveillance apparatus, if true, represent a stunning abuse of our basic rights. We demand the U.S. Congress reveal the full extent of the NSA's spying programs!

Submitted by tnjp on June 1, 2013 - 2:34pm.

Bradley Manning Support – Tallahassee

Tallahassee will join international demonstrations in support of Bradley Manning, Whistle-blower accused of exposing US war crimes every Sunday until Bradley is free, along with decade long Tallahassee’s Eternal Peace Vigil at the corner of Apalachee Parkway and South Monroe.

No demonstration in event of hurricane, snow, blizzard, or rain.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/123603944347093/

When: 06/02/2013, 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Location
Old Capital Steps
400 S Monroe St
Tallahassee, Fl 32301

Submitted by tnjp on June 1, 2013 - 2:22pm.

Thanking Bradley Manning
By Kathy Kelly
May 29, 2013
A few evenings ago, as the sky began to darken here in Kabul, Afghanistan, a small group of the Afghan Peace Volunteers, (APVs), gathered for an informal presentation about WikiLeaks, its chief editor Julian Assange, and its most prominent contributor, Bradley Manning. Basir Bita, a regular visitor to the APV household, began the evening’s discussion noting that June 1st will mark the beginning of Bradley Manning’s fourth year in prison. Two days later his trial will begin, a trial which could sadly result in his imprisonment for a life sentence. June 1st also begins an international week of support and solidarity, aimed at thanking Bradley Manning. #ThankManning!

Basir believes that the vast majority of Afghans are among myriads world-wide who have Manning to thank for information they will need in struggles for freedom, security, and peace. He wishes that more people would find the courage to stand up to military and government forces, especially their own, and act as “whistle-blowers.”

Submitted by tnjp on May 26, 2013 - 3:52pm.

Why I Spoke Out at Obama's Foreign Policy Speech
On topics from Guantánamo to drone strikes, I couldn’t let the president act as if he were some helpless official at the mercy of Congress.
Medea Benjamin
May 24, 2013

Having worked for years on the issues of drones and Guantánamo, I was delighted to get a pass (the source will remain anonymous) to attend President Obama’s speech at the National Defense University. I had read many press reports anticipating what the president might say. There was much talk about major policy shifts that would include transparency with the public, new guidelines for the use of drones, taking lethal drones out of the purview of the CIA, and in the case of Guantánamo, invoking the “waiver system” to begin the transfer of prisoners already cleared for release.

Sitting at the back of the auditorium, I hung on every word the president said. I kept waiting to hear an announcement about changes that would represent a significant shift in policy. Unfortunately, I heard nice words, not the resetting of failed policies.

Instead of announcing the transfer of drone strikes from the CIA to the exclusive domain of the military, Obama never even mentioned the CIA—much less acknowledge the killing spree that the CIA has been carrying out in Pakistan during his administration. While there were predictions that he would declare an end to signature strikes, strikes based merely on suspicious behavior that have been responsible for so many civilian casualties, no such announcement was made.

The bulk of the president’s speech was devoted to justifying drone strikes. I was shocked when the president claimed that his administration did everything it could to capture suspects instead of killing them. That is just not true.

Submitted by tnjp on May 25, 2013 - 2:39pm.

You Gotta Love Medea Benjamin

If you're an advocate for Peace and Justice you just gotta love Medea Benjamin. She consistently speaks out when the rest of us only wish we could. As co-founder of CodePink she's been at it for over a decade, repeatedly speaking truth to power at the risk of losing personal freedom and physical harm. She may be diminutive in size but posses a gargantuan spirit.

Her latest exploit? Speaking out against President Obama's policies during his counter-terrorism policy speech at the National Defense University. As Obama said himself - "The voice of that woman is worth paying attention to..."

Witness it yourself in the below videos, reports, and interviews...

President Obama Heckled By Code Pink Leader Madea Benjamin. Guantanamo Gitmo Speech

Medea Benjamin v. President Obama: CodePink Founder Disrupts Speech, Criticizing Drone, Gitmo Policy

Submitted by tnjp on May 15, 2013 - 8:33pm.

From Bill McKibben at www.350.org

For the last two years, all across the country, people have said the same thing to us: “We’re ready to fight.”

And as the planet lurches past 400 parts per million concentrations of CO2, the moment has come, the moment to ask you to do hard, important, powerful things. The last two weeks of July are, statistically, the hottest stretch of the year. This year we want to make them politically hot too. Which means we need you, out on the front line. We need some of you to risk going to jail, and all of you to show up and speak out. And since it’s a hard thing to ask, this letter is going to be a little longer than usual. (If you want to cut to the chase, though, the list of actions can be found here.)

We’re calling this next phase of the fight “Summer Heat.” Over the course of the final weeks of July, from the Pacific Northwest to the coast of Maine, from the Keystone pipeline route to the White House where the administration has broken its promise to put solar on the roof, to the Utah desert where they’re getting ready for the first tar sands mine in the US, we’re going to try and get across the essential message: it’s time to stand up – peacefully but firmly — to the industry that is wrecking our future. Click here to make your stand: www.joinsummerheat.org/map

We believe that mass action can breathe life into even the most hardened political fights, and so these actions will all aim to bring together thousands of people to stand together -- perhaps sometimes on the wrong side of the law...

Submitted by tnjp on May 3, 2013 - 4:44pm.

May 1, 2013
Julian Assange: Wikileaks Has the Goods on the Deaths of Innocent Iraqis Killed by the US
By Medea Benjamin

The government doesn't even claim that Bradley passed information directly to "the enemy" or that he had any intent to do so. But they are nonetheless making the absurd claim that merely informing the public about classified government activities makes someone a traitor because it "indirectly informs the enemy."

Source: AlterNet

The WikiLeaks founder talks Bush and Bradley Manning.

George W. Bush's new presidential library at Southern Methodist University in Texas has opened with great fanfare, including the attendance of Presidents Obama and former Presidents Carter, Bush Sr. and Clinton. George Bush has said that the library is "a place to lay out facts." What facts would you like to see displayed at his library?

A good place to start would be laying out the number of deaths caused by the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan. At Wikileaks, we documented that from 2004-2009, the US had records of over 100,000 individual deaths of Iraqis due to violence unleashed by that invasion, roughly 80% of them civilians. These are the recorded deaths, but many more died. And in Afghanistan, the US recorded about 20,000 deaths from 2004-2010. These would be good facts to include in the presidential library.

And perhaps the library could document how people around the world protested against the invasion of Iraq, including the historic February 15, 2003 mobilization of millions of people around the globe.

Many people worked hard during the Bush years to protest the wars, but the Bush administration refused to listen. It was very demoralizing for people to think that their efforts were for naught.

They should not be demoralized. I believe that the opposition to the Iraq war was very important, and that it actually altered the behavior of US forces during the initial invasion of Iraq. Compare it to the 1991 Gulf War, when massive numbers of Iraqis, both soldiers and civilians, were killed. In the 2003 invasion there was a lot more concern about casualties. The protests rattled their cage....

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