Eternal Peace Vigil Against Iraq War
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Submitted by tnjp on October 19, 2010 - 12:50pm.
These costs are the main factors driving 58 percent of the American public, including over 70 percent of Democrats and a majority of independent voters, to question whether these wars are justified.
It seems unbelievable, and certainly unconscionable, to keep these facts smothered in fog, when they need to be communicated in every blog, every leaflet, every speech given by anti-war activists.
Here are the best estimates that have been hidden from the public:
Submitted by tnjp on October 17, 2010 - 8:46pm.
After Service, Veteran Deaths Surge
In the six years after Reuben Paul Santos returned to Daly City from a combat tour in Iraq, he battled depression with poetry, violent video games and, finally, psychiatric treatment. His struggle ended last October, when he hung himself from a stairwell. He was 27.
The high suicide rate among veterans has already emerged as a major issue for the military and the families and loved ones of military personnel. But Mr. Santos’s death is part of a larger trend that has remained hidden: a surge in the number of Afghanistan and Iraq veterans who have died not just as a result of suicide, but also because of vehicle accidents, motorcycle crashes, drug overdoses or other causes after being discharged from the military.
An analysis of official death certificates on file at the State Department of Public Health reveals that more than 1,000 California veterans under 35 died between 2005 and 2008. That figure is three times higher than the number of California service members who were killed in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts over the same period...
Submitted by tnjp on October 16, 2010 - 1:29pm.
October 15, 2010 at 10:10:16
In July, the United States military issued its largest release of raw data ever on deaths during the Iraq war. The Pentagon's tally of the number of Iraqis killed in that country between January 2004 and August 2008 amounts to almost 77,000 people both civilians and security forces who died in the carnage.
As the Associated Press reported, the information went unnoticed for months after being "quietly posted on the Web site of the United States Central Command without explanation." It was only recently discovered by the AP "during a routine check" for civilian and military casualty numbers," which the news agency had first requested in 2005 through the Freedom of Information Act. As AP noted , "The military has repeatedly resisted sharing its numbers, which it uses to determine security trends." (One exception: U.S. military officials in Baghdad released their July 2010 Iraqi casualty tally in order to refute the Iraqi government's much higher monthly figures, a decision made just weeks before U.S. forces withdrew all but 50,000 troops from Iraq "in an attempt to wind down the war and tout the nation's improved security.")
According to the AP, "a spokesman at Central Command headquarters in Tampa, Fla., could not answer basic questions about the information." Iraqi Health Ministry officials were equally reticent and refused to discuss the American figures, which fall thousands of deaths short of those the Iraqis have compiled using actual death certificates...
Activism | Afghanistan | Drones | Iraq | Militarism | National Protests | Peace & Justice | Politics
Submitted by tnjp on October 15, 2010 - 8:41pm.
Antiwar Activism Marks 10th Year of War - UFPJ report
Antiwar activists across the US marked the war anniversary with protests last week. Mock drone attacks dramatized the human cost of war in Madison, WI [ www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRuNVp8Vrvs ] and Boston [ www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovCbTqHC2lE ], and in Washington, DC [ www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLqJ3eDX6Xk ] at the Capitol, Union Station, and Dupont Circle (video). There was a die-in in Springfield, Oregon, and check out the great op-ed by Dan Goldrich in the Register Guard. On Long Island, Veterans for Peace and other peace activists demonstrated for an end to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars [ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OiXIVL7L-9E ] (video). And in San Francisco, Daniel Ellsberg joined a panel on "Anti-War Perspectives from the Left and Right", which brought together antiwar voices from a range of political perspectives...
Submitted by tnjp on October 12, 2010 - 8:54pm.
Despite Army Efforts, Soldier Suicides Continue
Nearly 20 months after the Army began strengthening its suicide prevention program, the suicide rate among active service members shows little sign of improvement.
FORT HOOD, Tex. - At 3:30 a.m. on a Saturday in August, Specialist Armando G. Aguilar Jr. found himself at the end of his short life. He was standing, drunk and weepy, in the parking lot of a Valero station outside Waco, Tex.
He had jumped out of his moving pickup. There was a police officer talking to him in frantic tones.
Specialist Aguilar held a pistol pointed at his head. This moment had been a long time coming, his family said. He had twice tried to commit suicide with pills since returning from a tough tour in Iraq a year earlier, where his job was to drive an armored vehicle to search for bombs.
Army doctors had put him on medications for depression, insomnia, nightmares and panic attacks. Specialist Aguilar was seeing an Army therapist every week.
But he had been getting worse in the days before his death, his parents said, seeing shadowy figures that were not there, hallucinating that he heard loud noises outside his trailer home. "He wanted help - he was out there asking for help," said his father, Armando Aguilar Sr. "He just snapped. He couldn't control what he was doing no more." Specialist Aguilar was one of 20 soldiers connected to Fort Hood who are believed to have committed suicide this year...
Submitted by tnjp on October 10, 2010 - 8:32pm.
The Box by Lascelles Abercrombie - postlude by Rafe Pilgrim
Once upon a time, in the land of Hush-A-Bye,
Submitted by tnjp on October 9, 2010 - 11:51am.
• Pakistani diplomat launches scathing attack on White House
Simon Tisdall and Richard Norton-Taylor
The non-specific US warning, which despite its vagueness led Britain, France and other countries to raise their overseas terror alert levels, was an attempt to justify a recent escalation in US drone and helicopter attacks inside Pakistan that have "set the country on fire", said Wajid Shamsul Hasan, the high commissioner to Britain.
Hasan, a veteran diplomat who is close to Pakistan's president, suggested the Obama administration was playing politics with the terror threat before next month's midterm congressional elections, in which the Republicans are expected to make big gains.
He also claimed President Obama was reacting to pressure to demonstrate that his Afghan war strategy and this year's troop surge, which are unpopular with the American public, were necessary...
Submitted by tnjp on October 8, 2010 - 10:26pm.
As we mark the 9th year of this bloody war in Afghanistan, please join us in calling on Secretary Clinton to stop giving our taxdollars to the mercenary firm Blackwater. We'll never end the war in Afghanistan as long as companies like Blackwater can make a killing out of killing. *Tell Hillary Clinton: Stop Doing Business with Blackwater!*
**As part of our Cut Blackwater Loose campaign, CODEPINK's *Medea Benjamin teamed up with DC's premier hiphop artist Head-Roc *to create a rap video "Blackwater Makes a Killing."Check it out.
Submitted by tnjp on October 8, 2010 - 1:20pm.
Latest from Robert Greenwald...
Activism | Afghanistan | Iraq | Militarism | National Protests | Peace & Justice | Politics | Veterans
Submitted by tnjp on October 7, 2010 - 8:20pm.
Operation Recovery launches publicly today
You can do your part to raise awareness by sending a Letter to the Editor of your local paper. Click here to send a Letter to your local Editor. We've made it easy.
Today's launch marks the beginning of Phase One of our campaign. Over the next several weeks, we will work to investigate the issues, decide which officials will become our campaign's targets, and work to raise awareness about the campaign.
That's where you come in.....
Submitted by tnjp on October 7, 2010 - 6:47pm.
The Long War: Year Ten
In January 1863, President Abraham Lincoln’s charge to a newly-appointed commanding general was simplicity itself: "give us victories." President Barack Obama’s tacit charge to his generals amounts to this: give us conditions permitting a dignified withdrawal. A pithy quote in Bob Woodward’s new book captures the essence of an emerging Obama Doctrine: "hand it off and get out."
Getting into a war is generally a piece of cake. Getting out tends to be another matter altogether - especially when the commander-in-chief and his commanders in the field disagree on the advisability of doing so.
Happy Anniversary, America. Nine years ago today - on October 7, 2001 - a series of U.S. air strikes against targets across Afghanistan launched the opening campaign of what has since become the nation’s longest war. Three thousand two hundred and eighty five days later the fight to determine Afghanistan’s future continues. At least in part, "Operation Enduring Freedom" has lived up to its name: it has certainly proven to be enduring.
As the conflict formerly known as the Global War on Terror enters its tenth year, Americans are entitled to pose this question: When, where, and how will the war end? Bluntly, are we almost there yet?....
Submitted by tnjp on October 7, 2010 - 1:40pm.
Afghanistan Veterans Speak Out on 10th Anniversary
Submitted by tnjp on October 7, 2010 - 11:39am.
Emotional Effects of Heavy Combat Can Be Lifelong for Veterans
The findings are ominous with the exposure of today's men and women to heavy combat in the ongoing Iraq and Afghanistan wars on terror at a rate that probably exceeds the length of time for U.S. veterans during World War II, said UF sociologist Monika Ardelt.
"The study shows that we really need to take care of our veterans when they arrive home, because if we don't, they may have problems for the rest of their lives," she said. "Yet veterans report they are facing long waiting lines at mental health clinics and struggling to get the services they need."
The 60-year study, co-authored with UF graduate student Scott Landes and George Vaillant, a psychiatry professor at Harvard Medical School, compared 50 World War II veterans with high combat exposure with 110 veterans without any combat experiences. Results showed that heavy combat exposure at a young age had a detrimental effect on physical health and psychological well-being for about half of the men well into their 80s, she said. The findings were published in the latest issue of the journal Research in Human Development...
Submitted by tnjp on October 6, 2010 - 10:49am.
....The 83-year-old Belafonte spoke of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s opposition to the Vietnam war and reminded the crowd of Dr. King's words saying "America would soon come to realize that the war that we were in at that time, that this nation waged in Vietnam, was not only unconscionable but unwinnable."
Submitted by tnjp on September 24, 2010 - 1:50pm.
On October 7, the 9th anniversary of the Afghanistan invasion, Iraq Veterans Against the War will announce our first-ever strategic campaign, *Operation Recovery: Stop the Deployment of Traumatized Troops. We recognize that we must stop the deployment of all soldiers in order to end the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan. However, we see the deployment of soldiers with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries, and Military Sexual Trauma as particularly cruel, inhumane, and dangerous. *Further more, we know that without the repeated use of traumatized soldiers on the battlefield, the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan could not continue. This is how we will end these wars, by winning our right to heal.*
Do you want to help IVAW end the occupations? Sign the pledge of support for Operation Recovery.
Join our campaign now by making a Pledge of Support
We are reaching out to you, our loyal supporters, before we make the campaign announcement public. In building up to the announcement we need you to help us inform others about this issue and get them to pledge their support for the campaign.
Thousands of troops are being sent to war despite suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and Military Sexual Trauma (MST). Many of us within IVAW have faced or are currently facing deployment as we try to recover from the severe trauma we have already experienced.
While we recognize that we must stop the deployment of all soldiers in order to end the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan, we see the deployment of soldiers with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries, and Military Sexual Trauma as particularly cruel, inhumane, and dangerous. Military commanders across all branches are pushing service members far past human limits for the sake of 'combat readiness.' We cannot allow those commanders to continue to ignore the welfare of their troops who are, after all, human beings.
There is a problem, a basic right is being denied, and we will organize to get it back.
This issue affects all of us. Everyone needs to recognize that the improper standards of care in the military and VA are harming our brothers and sisters, our nation, and only furthers the cycle of dehumanization and destruction of these wars.
Spread the word about the campaign here: https://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5966/tell_a_friend/operationrecover... ...
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