GI SPECIAL 3A89:
American bombing in Indochina was like an insane game of musical
The Vietnam Wars 1945-1990
Toward the end of the Vietnam War, many B-52 bombing crews refused
to fly, because they knew they were bombing civilian targets.
and caption from the I-R-A-Q ( I Remember Another Quagmire )
portfolio of Mike Hastie, US Army Medic, Vietnam 1970-71.
(Contact at: (email@example.com)
for more of his outstanding work. T)
“They're Not Doing
The Right Thing. But You See, That's The Thing: They Think They
“-- And We Can Say
We're Doing The Right Thing, But Nobody Knows If We Ultimately Are.”
He's given it a
lot of thought. "It's just the way the world works. I mean,
their job is not in the best interests of the world. They're not
doing the right thing. But you see, that's the thing: They think
they are. And we can say we're doing the right thing, but nobody
knows if we ultimately are. Are we going to change this part of
the world? Are we going to change their government for the better
or for the worse? Is it going to be better when we leave here?
Is it going to be worse whenever we leave here? We don't know
that. Nobody ever knows who's ultimately fighting for the better
"I know the grief
of his family is no less than the grief my family would've known
if he'd gotten his shot off first," Karcher said. "He made a
choice, just like I made a choice, to pick up arms and fight for
something. That day, his choice cost him."
March 20, 2005, BY MATTHEW MCALLESTER,
SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, Newsday
It was only in November that the men
of the 3rd squad were young, quips of wit and dumb-luck fearlessness
sparking from their mouths. In the white-hot center of the battle
of Fallujah they were dousing their fear with good fortune and
An insurgent's rocket hit the roof of
a building they were taking cover in, but a miracle beam in the
ceiling saved their lives and they laughed and told stories as night
fell, none of them even scratched by the fire and hot metal that had
torn into two soldiers outside. In another house they had briefly
occupied that week of the battle, one of them tried on a pair of red
women's underwear and posed, a Cheshire cat for the camera.
That one is dead now, shot in the
chest and neck a couple of days after the pictures were taken. His
buddies were torn up, too - grenades rolling at their feet, bullets
slicing into their bodies, outnumbered by insurgents shooting at
them from all sides - only two of the eight making it out of the
ambush without chunks of metal inside them.
Those men, a tight squad of seven
infantrymen plus a medic, who went into that house in southern
Fallujah on Nov. 13, crawling and running out moments later,
bleeding and dying, are not the same now. It is not just their
physical wounds and the loss of their friend; it is their scarred
minds and the gaining of knowledge that most people would rather
Their nights now
can be filled with memories distorted into dreams; their mornings
sometimes start with shaking, as if there were an earthquake in
their guts, tremors spreading down their arms; in the evenings, they
talk to each other in confidence, quietly, but not to those who
weren't there because they wouldn't understand.
One man who was there and who does
understand, the soldiers say, is Capt. Jonathan Fowler, the 2nd
Battalion's chaplain. But forget about going to the Combat Stress
team - the Army shrinks on base - because no soldier wants to be
seen as weak or crazy.
So they deal with it in their own
way. For the combat soldier, "it is as though every enemy dead is a
human being he has killed, and every friendly dead is a comrade for
whom he was responsible," writes Lt. Col. David Grossman, author of
"On Killing," an authoritative book about the dynamics of killing,
primarily in the military.
It was mainly the Marines who fought
in Fallujah, but two heavily armored Army units - the 3rd squad is
part of one of these units - used their tanks and Bradley Fighting
Vehicles to scythe through the city.
Now, the 3rd squad
and its battalion are in transit, expected home by the end of the
After a year that
saw the 2nd Battalion of the 7th Cavalry fight in two of the biggest
battles of the war so far - Najaf and Fallujah - they tell
themselves they will not become a messed-up generation of American
veterans - the Deer Hunters and Rambos - or like the vets who appear
in newspaper articles, the ones who have gone home from Iraq and
shot themselves in their backyards, beaten their wives or started
bar fights out of nothings.
That's not going to
happen to them, they say. But for some, it won't be so easy lying
in soft beds with caring wives, jagged flashes of killing and dying
in their minds.
Those who have been home on leave know
that home isn't necessarily where they will find peace and clarity.
Medical experts in the United States say that such returning
veterans may be experiencing the first signs of Post-Traumatic
Stress Disorder (PTSD).
"You go to church,"
said Staff Sgt. Carlos Santillana the other day, recalling his
two-week leave back home in Abilene, Texas, in early December. "And
they're like, 'Hey, we'd like y'all to welcome back our hometown
hero. He's been over there in Iraq.' And you're just thinking to
yourself this is kind of an irony or an oxymoron. In the Bible it
says thou shalt not kill. I'm a hometown hero and I just killed a
whole bunch of people. And they're welcoming me back in a public
killed more men than he has seen years. He is 25. He believes he's
killed 26, perhaps 27 people. You count things like that - killing
people, even the enemy.
In the weeks that have passed since
the battle in Fallujah, one of the men who entered the building
filled with insurgents has been buried; two have had surgery and one
is living with a right hand that will never properly open and close
again. Three returned to the squad after medical care. Only two
were not injured that day. The unit is probably as
combat-experienced as any in the battalion. Its men certainly are
the most decorated, having received two of only three Silver Stars
awarded to soldiers in the 800-soldier battalion over the past year
Sometimes, now, they seem all right -
unfazed and resilient, cool and funny. Sometimes, they don't seem
The thin-faced Santillana is close to
Spc. Benny Alicea, who has just received a Silver Star for his
extraordinary courage on Nov. 13 and who is still trying to find
answers about what has happened.
"I just signed off
on life," said Alicea, who watched his friend Spc. Jose Velez die in
front of him on Nov. 13, who felt bullets going past his ear, who
carries three bits of shrapnel around in his upper legs from that
day. Velez won the squad's other Silver Star, posthumously. "That's
the biggest problem I been having when I got back is that, hey I'm
still here. At that point in time I literally just decided I'm
dead. I just remember telling myself, hey - my wife's name is
Cheryl - I love you, Cheryl. I told myself, this is my day, you
just give up, you just decide you ain't going to make it, then you
just accept it."
But none of the
bullets or fragments of grenade killed him and Alicea was left
holding an acceptance of his own death that he doesn't know what to
"I don't even feel
like I'm going home yet cause I pretty much didn't plan on going
home," he said. "I don't know what you're supposed to do if you make
it out of something like that."
Soldiers fighting in Iraq have seen
more combat than any American troops since Vietnam. Of them, few
have seen more than Santillana's squad. And just as that war
damaged the psyches of thousands of young Americans, so the war in
Iraq is mainlining trauma into those who have been there.
Lt. Dan Kilgore, 24, who commands the
platoon of which Santillana's squad is a part, is responsible for
more than 30 men. He saw a change in some immediately after
Fallujah. "I've got some guys who act a lot different than they did
before," he said. "Since Fallujah, people have been more cautious.
Kinda jumpy," Santillana said. "Every time you hear a noise,
somebody slams a door in the other trailer and you're dropping to
the floor in your trailer and you're opening up the door in your
trailer. And then you open up the door real slow and peek your head
out. 'What was that?' 'I slammed the door.' 'Don't do that, it
scared the hell out of me.' "
Velez was the only soldier from the
battalion killed by the enemy in Fallujah. Santillana's squad and
Kilgore's platoon are the hardest hit by his death. Some of the men
can't stop thinking about the tubby kid with the thick glasses who
wanted to fit in so much he volunteered right off to carry the
squad's heavy machine gun, something no one wants to do. He was a
gently playful guy who married his high school sweetheart and had an
appetite that would lead him to demolish rations in the back of a
That day, Santillana's squad went
alone into a house from which they believed a single insurgent was
firing. There ended up being at least five insurgents in a single
room, others swarming around the back and, worse, a sniper across
the street. The Americans were instantly surrounded and
overwhelmed. Within moments, they were forming a pile of injured in
the street outside the building, some firing their rifles even as
they bled into the mud. Velez unleashed every round he had as he
tried to protect his buddies. Then, the sniper found the exposed
spot below his neck, and Velez lay dead on the street.
When the squad's survivors came back
to Camp Taji after the battle, Alicea locked himself in his room for
two days. The troops at Taji live in trailers, giving them some
privacy. Alicea had bunked next to Velez.
"I blame myself 'cause maybe I should
have stayed in that building firing and not come out," he said,
sitting quietly in a trailer recently. There's a scar on his left
cheek where the ricocheting fragment of a bullet cut him. "I knew I
would have got hit. But maybe it would have made the situation
outside of that room better."
unwarranted guilt have come its henchmen: memories and dreams.
Alicea's dreams, like those of the other soldiers, are troubling him
less often than they did. The remembrances stay. "I think about it
and I start breathing heavy and I start shaking and everything," he
said, his tight New England accent competing with the casual tones
that so many infantrymen seem to pick up, like airline pilots over
From the brute horror of the four,
five or six minutes of that day - no one can quite remember how long
it took for their lives to change - there is one image Alicea can't
shake: Velez lying dead in the street as Alicea and the others
fought for their lives. "I just got mad cause he had his face in the
water, in the streets . . ."
Santillana went on his leave soon
after Fallujah. His wife, Rebecca, has a master's degree in
psychology and is his best friend. He tells her everything and she
understands, telling him of studies she's read, saying all the right
things, listening. When he would get up in the middle of the night
in December to bleach his memories with television shows or root
around for tools in his freezing cold garage, she would come and
find him and lead him gently back to bed, where he would start
shadow-boxing with the past again.
He asked one thing
of her: never to wake him up. One day they were in Austin, visiting
her brother. Santillana lay down on the floor of the guest room and
fell asleep. Rebecca forgot his request and shook his shoulder.
"And I, like, sat up real quick and I'm just sitting there shaking
and I'm just looking and . . . I knew it was her but I didn't know
it was her - it was like I just wanted to swing at whoever it was
who was waking me up."
Santillana paused, gazing at the floor
of the trailer. "I can't believe I almost, I can't believe I even
thought about hitting my wife."
Back home, he drove
the Texas highways looking for concealed roadside bombs, wanting to
steer down the median, away from the edges where the bombs are. He
wanted to swerve when passing under a bridge to fool anyone overhead
who might be about to drop a grenade on his vehicle.
He watched his kid
brother playing a combat video game and yelled out when his brother
didn't look before turning a corner in a tight situation.
Santillana didn't like to sit in a restaurant with his back to the
room. In an IHOP, someone dropped a plate. He ducked. Agonizing
over what Christmas gifts to buy, paying the bills; these things
seemed irrelevant and tiresome.
One man who was caught in the ambush
in the house in Fallujah had a job different from the others. Spc.
Scott Cogil is the platoon's medic and, as so often, he was with
Santillana's squad when they burst into the house. Cogil's job is
to save lives and, in those few minutes, one of the squad died in
front of him. No one, including Cogil when he's thinking straight,
believes Velez could have been saved. Cogil just won the Bronze
Star for his bravery, for saving Sgt. Akram Abdelwahab's life and
for firing back at the enemy as much as anyone there.
Guilt isn't always logical. Velez used
his fighting skills to save lives, Cogil feels. Cogil feels he owed
it to Velez to use his medical skills to save him. He owed him.
"It was my responsibility to take care of him," said the soft-voiced
21-year-old, whose parents split up days before he rode into
Fallujah. He paused and his voice lowered further. "And I didn't do
There are traces of that day in his
dreams, too. "Sometimes it'll be like I'm at home and all of a
sudden we'll have a picnic and someone will be coming down the hill
attacking us and I won't have a weapon," he said. "Like other
people get hurt but I never get hurt. I never get hurt. People
are, like, dying and stuff."
Cogil and Santillana were the only
ones not injured in the fight. Cogil talks like he almost wishes he
had been, or perhaps wonders what's so special about him that he
wasn't. "How come I never got hurt? Everybody else got hurt. I was
right behind him (Velez). I was in front of him. I was with him
all the time. Bullets hit all around me and never hit me."
The days after Fallujah passed slowly,
building up to the last one. The men went out on patrol, never
seeing an enemy that only days before February's awards ceremony
took another soldier. This time, a huge hidden bomb ripped up from
beneath an Abrams tank, the toughest vehicle the army has, killing
the driver. He was the battalion's 12th lost soldier. And in the
unit's final days in Iraq, on Feb. 25, they lost a 13th - a
22-year-old specialist rifleman from Dewey, Okla., named Adam
Brewer. He was killed by another bomb.
"For me personally, this one was
harder than the last," Maj. Scott Jackson, the 2nd battalion's
second in command, said in an e-mail from Taji on Feb. 28. "I can't
explain why for sure, part is due to the proximity to the end of our
tour here, part is due to the cumulative losses within the
battalion, and a large part I can't put a label on."
Toward the end, when they weren't out
on patrol, they were fixing their prematurely aged Bradleys and
tanks, eating good food at the chow hall where sports banners hung
from the ceiling, working out, listening to music - Santillana
shifted his previously hard-core tastes to flute and bagpipe music -
and thinking about what was and what was to come. And sometimes,
they thought about the men they had killed in Najaf and Fallujah in
the past year.
None of them feel they did wrong by
killing. It was a job - it was us or them - but that does not
necessarily insulate a person from the pain of having ended
their job and we're doing ours but ultimately we gotta come out
ahead," Santillana said.
He's given it a lot
of thought. "It's just the way the world works. I mean, their job
is not in the best interests of the world. They're not doing the
right thing. But you see, that's the thing: They think they are.
And we can say we're doing the right thing, but nobody knows if we
ultimately are. Are we going to change this part of the world? Are
we going to change their government for the better or for the
worse? Is it going to be better when we leave here? Is it going to
be worse whenever we leave here? We don't know that. Nobody ever
knows who's ultimately fighting for the better cause."
Santillana said he didn't give much
thought before to those he killed. The death of a friend, Velez,
humanized those he was killing.
"You don't stop
what you're doing, but you just for a second you wish there were
another way. Would you all listen to some peace talks or some -- ?
Can you all find an easier way to do this besides me having to kill
Most soldiers in the 2nd battalion
have been involved in killing, said Jackson - whether through the
sights of an M-16, while driving the Bradley that fires explosive
rounds or, as with Jackson during Fallujah, targeting a house with a
bomb. The battalion's operations officer, Maj. Tim Karcher, killed
a man on the first night of the battle. This reporter was in his
Bradley, watching on a night-vision screen in the back compartment,
when Karcher ordered his gunner to shoot at the man, who was so
close you could see what he was wearing. The man had appeared
unarmed at first and Karcher held his fire. Soon after, the man
reappeared, pointing a rocket-propelled grenade launcher at the
When the Bradley's rounds hit, the man
seemed to disappear. It wasn't completely clear that he had been
killed, although his chances were minimal. Five or six days later,
Karcher made a point of going back to the house, to the gateway
where the man had stood. The body was gone but there was a smear of
dried, blackened blood on the wall next to the gate.
"I wondered if I was thinking about
something I didn't need to think about," Karcher said the other day.
"I probably just needed to know." He is fine with his decision, but
he knows that moment caused pain somewhere.
"I know the grief
of his family is no less than the grief my family would've known if
he'd gotten his shot off first," Karcher said. "He made a choice,
just like I made a choice, to pick up arms and fight for something.
That day, his choice cost him."
It's just too early to tell what the
cost will be for the victors of Fallujah. Santillana, Alicea and
Cogil all believe they will adjust to life back home. Santillana
probably will become a recruiter, partly to avoid putting his family
through another year like the last. Alicea is thinking about trying
to join the Special Forces, where he can work in an even smaller
close-knit group; besides that, his focus will be on Cheryl.
Cogil wants out of the army. The
decorated war hero doesn't like being shot at, doesn't want to go
through it again. He'll go back to Ft. Hood, finish out his time in
the army, go to college and visit a house in Rantoul, Ill., missing
the father who left home while Cogil was at war.
The men say they'll visit Velez's
grave in his hometown of Lubbock, Texas. The platoon is looking for
a tattoo artist skilled enough to stain Velez' face into the hide of
anyone who wants it there for life. There are hopes - or are they
The three men hope
people back in the United States will refrain from asking them over
and over how they are, what it was like over there and whether they
have killed, the questions that come like machine-gun rounds
wherever they go. They hope they will fit in with their families
again. They hope they won't fall apart.
"I'm scared to
death that for some reason maybe some day something will snap and I
won't be able to control it," Santillana said. He has only seen his
son Jaden for four months of the child's life. "I'm scared because
I don't want that to happen. I, I, I love my family and I don't
want them to have to leave me not because they can't love me anymore
but leave me because I'm not physically capable of being around
them, because I'm losing my mind, punching holes in the walls and --
low-crawling around my house doing stupid --, waking up in the night
screaming and hollering. So far I've done a little bit of that."
Santillana and his buddies could snap,
or they could keep it together. Only the coming months will tell.
Perhaps one lesson from the ruined, dirty streets of Fallujah will
help them navigate the clean, ordered streets of America more than
any other: Years before most young men, they have seen what matters
NEED SOME TRUTH? CHECK
OUT TRAVELING SOLDIER
Telling the truth
- about the occupation or the criminals running the government in
Washington - is the first reason for Traveling Soldier. But we
want to do more than tell the truth; we want to report on the
resistance - whether it's in the streets of Baghdad, New York, or
inside the armed forces. Our goal is for Traveling Soldier to
become the thread that ties working-class people inside the armed
services together. We want this newsletter to be a weapon to help
you organize resistance within the armed forces. If you like what
you've read, we hope that you'll join with us in building a
network of active duty organizers.
And join with Iraq War
vets in the call to end the occupation and bring our troops home
IRAQ WAR REPORTS
40 Wounded By Abu
G. Resistance Attack
Apr 3, 2005 (Reuters) & Aljazeera
The number of U.S.
soldiers wounded in a battle with insurgents outside Baghdad's Abu
Ghraib prison rose to more than 40 on Sunday, from an earlier count
of 20, the U.S. military said.
Most of the injuries were light, but
several were serious, according to Lieutenant Colonel Guy Rudisill,
spokesman for detainee operations in Iraq. All of the wounded were
being treated at the prison's medical facility.
At least one insurgent was confirmed
killed in the battle late on Saturday, but the colonel said he
expected the true toll was far higher after intense fighting that
lasted around an hour and involved U.S. helicopters and heavy
A group of between 40 and 60
insurgents attacked the prison after dark, ramming a suicide car
bomb into a perimeter building, he said. Another car bomb detonated
shortly afterwards, as U.S. troops were tending to the wounded from
The attack followed
a day of sporadic violence as six people were killed elsewhere in
Iraq following a period of declining attacks that had raised hopes
the violence is on the wane.
fighters appeared to be focusing their efforts on bigger, better
U.S. Marine Killed
April 3 (Xinhuanet)
A US Marine was
killed on Saturday in a blast in Iraq's western city of Haditha, the
US military said Sunday.
"A Marine assigned to the Second Light
Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, II Marine Expeditionary Force, was
killed Saturday, April 2, by an explosion while conducting combat
operations in Haditha," the military said in a statement.
The military gave
no further details on the incident, but witnesses told Xinhua
Saturday that clashes broke out as the US troops swept the city
searching for fighters.
April 3, 2005 Agence France-Presse
A foreigner, with
western features, working as a private guard, was killed and others
in his convoy were wounded when they were ambushed near Balad from
Baghdad, said police Colonel Hameed Ahmed.
The dead man's body lay 20 metres from
a sports utility vehicle that was on fire, Ahmed said.
A Trip Down Memory
The Bush Buddies
Said The War Was Over After The February 2004 Casualty Reports
Military Fatalities: By Month
Now they’re playing
the same old tune because casualties dropped in March 2005. Check
out what happened next in 2004. Guess what. The resistance was
regrouping for the next waves of attacks.
underestimates the opponent is a centuries old problem for would-be
Imperial conquerors. It ends badly, for them. And it ends far far
worse for the troops they mislead.
http://icasualties.org/oif/ An excellent source of information
and battle reports. And they do need a bit of financial help to
keep going. T
Vehicle Hit In Al-Ghazaliya
district, west of Baghdad, a US military vehicle was destroyed in a
rocket-propelled grenade attack that was carried out by armed
Britain To Pull Out
5,500 Troops From Iraq “Within A Year”
April 3, 2005 Press Trust of India
Britain plans to
reduce the size of its military force in Iraq from 9,000 to 3,500
soldiers within a year and increase its troops in Afghanistan
in a renewed bid to hunt down Osama bin Laden and other senior
Al-Qaeda figures reportedly hiding close to the country's border
with Pakistan, a leading London newspaper said on Sunday.
British troops are based in five
locations in southern Iraq, including Camp Abu Naji in Al Amarah,
which is home to a battle group of about 1,000 armoured infantry
troops. The remainder of the 9,000 troops are split between the
three camps in Basra and the logistics base at Shaibah, 40 kms south
of the city.
If You Can’t Solve
A Problem, Make It A Bigger Problem
April 2005 Richard Becker, Socialism
What explains this
recurrent “stupidity” on the part of people who hold doctorates from
the best universities? Above all, it is their class position.
have nothing but contempt for the “common people,” for the workers
and the oppressed of the world, including those who live in this
Unable to solve the
“problem” of popular resistance to the occupation of Iraq, the Bush
administration’s new foreign policy team has adopted Secretary of
Defense Rumsfeld’s 2003 advice—“If a problem cannot be solved,
enlarge it”—moving forcefully to expand its intervention in the
Since the beginning of George W.
Bush’s second term, the United States has stepped up its aggressive
maneuvering in the region, targeting Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine
These Are The
Idiots Who Sent You To War
April 2, 2005 Walter C. Uhler,
Was it just me? Or did every reader
of Ron Suskind's book, The Price
of Loyalty, about former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill
smile knowingly when he or she read pages 116–120 of the March 31,
2005 Report of The Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of
the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction?
Suskind's book already were familiar with a much more hilarious
misuse of imagery intelligence by President Bush and the right-wing
ideologues who filled most of his cabinet positions.
Suskind dutifully captures Treasury
Secretary O'Neill's details of the first meeting of the "principals"
(department heads) of President Bush's National Security Council.
That January 30, 2001 meeting, like so many others prior to al
Qaeda's attacks on September 11, was devoted to Iraq, not Osama bin
CIA Director George
Tenet commenced his briefing on the latest intelligence on Iraq by
unrolling and flattening a long scroll, the size of an architectural
blueprint, on the briefing table. O'Neill was there and recalls:
"It was a grainy photograph of a factory. Tenet said that
surveillance planes had just taken this photo. The CIA believed the
building might be 'a plant that produces either chemical or
biological materials for weapons manufacture.'" [Suskind p.72]
O'Neill, "Soon, everyone was leaning over the photo…Cheney motioned
to the deputies, the backbenchers, lining the wall. 'Come on up,'
he said with uncharacteristic excitement, waving his arm. 'You have
to take a look at this.'" [Ibid]
With a dozen people
now gazing intently at the surveillance imagery, including the
President, O'Neill dropped the proverbial turd in the punchbowl:
"I've seen a lot of factories around the world that look a lot like
this one. What makes us suspect that this one is producing chemical
or biological agents for weapons?" [p. 73]
I have visions of poor Cheney
clutching his chest—the air rushing out of his lungs and his
pacemaker about to implode—upon hearing poor (but subsequently,
Medal of Freedom awardee) Tenet
concede that there was "no confirming intelligence" about the
materials being produced. [Ibid] It's called "buffoonery in high
places," but it received the same devastating blow that Bush's
self-serving Commission delivered on March 31, 2005 to the CIA's
pre-war CW conclusions.
When the NSC met on
March 1, the highlight of that meeting was the heated exchange
between Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Secretary of State
Colin Powell. Rumsfeld complained that loose UN economic sanctions
were permitting Iraq to purchase dumptrucks possessing hydraulic
cylinders, which might be used as launchers for rockets.
"For Christ's sake, if somebody wants a cylinder to erect a rocket,
they don't have to buy a $200,000 dumptruck to get one! (Bob
Woodward, Plan of Attack, p.15)
Such nonsense by
the senior leaders of the Bush administration preceded the IC's
nonsense about the aluminum tubes and chemical warfare imagery, as
well as most of the mobile biological weapons labs fiasco.
Pablo Paredes And
The Culture Of Life
In the 13 days
between the time that Ms. Schiavo’s feeding tube was removed and
the time she passed, 14 of our nation’s children were killed in
Iraq. I haven’t heard one peep about this injustice from our
propaganda media or our self-righteous, self-proclaimed “pro-life”
But trust me,
since my own son killed was Iraq, I know the parents are weeping
and screaming and crying out to God in despair and sorrowfully
wondering why their child’s life was cut way too short. The
families and friends of our murdered nation’s lifeblood are crying
real tears that won’t be easily soothed or dried anytime soon.
I am so angry at the level of hypocrisy spewing out of the mouths of
our so-called leaders, and I am so heartbroken at the senseless and
needless deaths of Casey and everyone else...
One of the only constructive ways I can deal with it is by writing.
And you all are the recipients of my therapy...I hope you don't
Co-founder of Gold
Star Families for Peace
Pablo Paredes And
The Culture Of Life
Pablo Paredes is a
soft-spoken, humble, gentle young man who has a very calm and
intelligent demeanor. Pablo is also one of the most courageous
young men I have ever met.
Last year, Pablo, a
Navy Petty Officer, refused to board his ship which was bound for
the Persian Gulf and transporting a group of Marines to fight in
Iraq. He said at the time, “I don’t want to be part of a ship that’s
taking 3000 Marines over there knowing a hundred or more of them
won’t come back.” He stood on the dock wearing a shirt that said,
“Like a cabinet member, I resign.”
Pablo is facing a Special Courts
Martial for violating the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Without
getting technical (which I can’t anyway), he is mainly being charged
with going AWOL. My argument would be that with our government’s
new found respect (at least for the rhetoric) of the “culture of
life” that all charges should be dropped against Pablo and that he
should go free.
On March 31st, after Terri Schiavo was
finally allowed to mercifully leave this earth, George Bush said
this (yes, with a straight face): “I urge all those who honor Terri
Schiavo to continue to work to build a culture of life where all
Americans are welcomed and valued,
especially those whose lives are at
the mercy of others.”
On March 31st, Press
Secretary, Scott Mc Clellan also reiterated the fact that has been
stated repeatedly this week:
George Bush supports those who defend life.
I don’t know how many times I have
heard in the last 13 days since Ms. Schiavo’s feeding tube was
removed that America should exemplify a “Culture of Life.”
I guess the framing
and spinning issue would be: Who defines what life is worth
defending? I have searched the archives of quotes since the Schiavo
circus began on March 18th, and I haven’t seen one quote
where one duplicitous politician has said “all life is precious.”
Such a statement could surely bounce back and bite them in the
behind and they know it.
However, I will
proceed on the assumption that our leaders meant “all” life is
precious. Not just life that can be cynically used as a political
tool to hopefully boost poll numbers. Not just life that can be used
to raise money from citizens who are duped into believing that the
slimy snake oil salespeople who run our country right now truly care
for anyone other than themselves and their special interests.
I know I am operating under a false
assumption, but someone has to start calling the hypocrites on the
carpet for the words they actually utter.
actions were life affirming. Pablo really and truly believes in his
heart that every Marine in his care deserves to have life.
Pablo believes that since this
occupation of Iraq is based on deliberate lies and is also based on
a frightening and tragic parade of mistakes, miscalculations and
bull-stuff, that this aggression in Iraq is immoral. The UN has
called the occupation illegal. Pablo was defending life by his
actions and he should receive the support and admiration of our
country’s leadership, not be court-martialed for his defense of
In the 13 days
between the time that Ms. Schiavo’s feeding tube was removed and the
time she passed, 14 of our nation’s children were killed in Iraq. I
haven’t heard one peep about this injustice from our propaganda
media or our self-righteous, self-proclaimed “pro-life” politicians.
Am I the only person in America who
finds this ironic? I haven’t seen Tom DeLay crying his theatrical
tears on command for the young people who had viable lives and
actual futures that were killed in Iraq in the same time period he
was so expediently concerned about Terri Schiavo.
But trust me, since
my own son killed was Iraq, I know the parents are weeping and
screaming and crying out to God in despair and sorrowfully wondering
why their child’s life was cut way too short. The families and
friends of our murdered nation’s lifeblood are crying real tears
that won’t be easily soothed or dried anytime soon.
We can only speculate on the numbers
of Iraqis who were tragically killed in the same time period. We
can only imagine their pain and suffering, because we aren’t allowed
to know the numbers or see the images of a war-torn and devastated
Where are the
religious leaders and Focus on the Family people? Why aren’t they
holding candle-light vigils outside of our government buildings
demanding an end to the occupation of Iraq? Why aren’t the same
people fervently praying for an end to our government-sponsored
Pablo knew that if he participated in
delivering troops to Iraq he would also be responsible for
delivering an early death to some innocent people. Pablo in his
good conscience could not live with that burden.
I don’t know how
many of those 3000 brave Marines that Pablo refused to transport to
their possible deaths have been killed or wounded so far in Iraq.
Pablo Paredes knew that their lives were at the mercy of others:
arrogant and reckless individuals who got our nation into a war that
never made any sense and makes less sense as time goes by.
I hope that more people in this
country, like Pablo, who value life, will stand up and remind our
leaders that they support a “Culture of Life.”
Let’s remind our leaders that they
don’t get to pick and choose which life we should consider valuable.
Let’s be the ones
who take back our destinies from the careless liars who have our
lives at their mercy.
Let’s hold them
accountable for the lives of the innocent people that their policies
are killing and destroying everyday. Let’s support all of our young
men and women who are refusing to go and kill, or be killed for this
abomination in Iraq.
Let’s be like Pablo
Paredes and stand up for life!!!
You can support
do you think? Comments from service men and women, and veterans,
are especially welcome. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Name, I.D., withheld on request. Replies confidential.
Soldiers & Their Families:
Bush Regime Cutting
More Benefits To Hide War Costs
March 28, 2005 Army Times Editorial
Thanks to the Pentagon’s war-budget
shell game, those who sacrifice the most are being forced to
sacrifice even more.
The tab for operations in Iraq is
running $4 billion a month, and the mission in Afghanistan requires
another $800 million a month.
But rather than
build those costs into the defense budget, the Bush administration
low-balled the actual Pentagon budget in hopes that an emergency
supplemental spending bill would get through Congress without the
months of scrutiny imposed on regular budget measures. The strategy
seems to be working — the $81 billion supplemental request has
cleared the House — but soldiers are paying the price for this
financial monkey business.
By shortchanging the 2005 budget, the
services have put garrison commanders in a difficult bind: Money
for base operations at military installations, for example, is
running at about 70 percent of requirements.
Commanders are shutting down gymnasiums, pools and other soldier-
and family-friendly programs and facilities. Some posts have even
cut off Tuition Assistance funding.
Troops are paying
enough of a price, in both time and blood, in this war; they
shouldn’t have to sacrifice their benefits, as well.
that soldiers and their families should be required to give up
programs and services that provide a baseline quality of life
because Pentagon budget masters wanted to minimize the cost of the
war for political purposes.
More disappointing still is that
rather than fighting for their troops’ benefits, officials inside
the Army and the Installation Management Agency are content to point
out that plans call for restoring funding for base operations to 90
percent of requirements — eventually.
Even if it happened
tomorrow, why should anyone be satisfied with funding that’s still
10 percent short of requirements?
That’s really no
different than providing armor for 90 percent of combat troops. It
might be an improvement, but it’s not a success.
Call it what it is:
Not good enough.
Letters To The Editor
This is in response to recent letters
on officers wearing branch insignia on the new Army Combat Uniform.
One pointed out that enlisted soldiers don’t wear branch insignia on
the current battle dress uniform or the ACU. That’s true, and I
think it’s wrong.
When I was
enlisted, I spent a lot of time on liaison teams. When you walk
into a strange tactical operations center, branch insignia is
helpful in identifying and remembering the players. That won’t, by
itself, make or break an operation, but it’s very handy.
It would be even
better if the enlisted were also identified by branch. When you
need some help with your radio, you can ask a Signal Branch soldier
for help instead of wasting time asking a soldier from another
branch. Plus, enlisted soldiers do wear branch insignia on the
Class A and dress blue uniform.
We should be consistent — all or none.
Another letter said
the Army has transformed into “an Army of one,” the implication
being that branch insignia sets an individual apart from the group
and that is bad.
Let’s carry that
idea out to its logical conclusion: Jump wings, diver badges and
aviator wings need to come off the combat uniform. Ditto for the
drill sergeant and recruiting patches. That kind of stuff sets
soldiers apart from the group. Unit patches? That’s just free
intelligence for the enemy. They’ve got to go.
So what do we really need on the
Chief Warrant Officer 4 Mark A.
Mortar Round Marks
Election Of Speaker
A mortar round
struck near Iraq‘s foreign ministry, shooting a cloud of smoke into
the sky, shortly after parliament elected a speaker, according to an
AFP reporter and an interior ministry official. Sunni Arab Elected
Iraq Parliament Speaker
The round hit just outside the Green
Zone, the sealed off enclave that is home to parliament and the US
embassy, just before 1 pm
Smoke was seen rising close to the
foreign ministry, which is just down the road from the Green Zone,
an AFP reporter witnessed.
fired mortars into the Green Zone during the parliament‘s previous
Withdraw And Resign
Apr. 3 (UPI)
television said Sunday an unspecified number of legislators have
either pulled out or resigned from the National Assembly.
The channel quoted
a member of the Shiite bloc in parliament, Hammam Hammoudi, as
saying the legislators resigned either for security reasons or to
protest their exclusion from the government being formed.
He said the National Assembly would
discuss finding others to replace them.
April 3, 2005 Agence France-Presse &
In the main
northern city of Mosul, two traffic policemen were killed by
insurgents at around 11.30 am local time in the
western al-Islah al-Zirahi district, Police Major Mohammed Fathi
An Iraqi government
employee was killed at 1:30 pm in a drive-by shooting in Baghdad's
western al-Bayaa neighbourhood, the interior
The body of two
army officers were discovered north of Baghdad.
Lieutenant Colonel Ziro Khalil Yunis
was shot once in the stomach. He was in civilian clothing and
carried Iraqi army and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan identification
cards, said Ahmed Abdullah Rajab of the Medical City Hospital.
A corpse was also discovered near
Himreen in Salahuddin province, said Major Mohammed Wadi, adding
that police believed the corpse was that of a captain kidnapped one
month ago with five other soldiers in Salman Bek.
Two Iraqi policemen
have been killed and four others wounded in an attack east of the
Iraqi city of Ramadi, Aljazeera has learned.
A bomber exploded a
booby-trapped truck targeting a building used as a military post by
US forces immediately closed entrances
and bridges leading to the city.
district, south of Baghdad, armed fighters assassinated an Iraqi
IF YOU DON’T LIKE
Iraqi Sunni Clerics
Deny Decree On Police
Apr. 2 (UPI)
of Muslim Scholars denied Saturday issuing a religious decree
allowing Iraqis to join of the Iraqi police forces and army.
The country's only Sunni religious
authority said in a statement that reports of 64 clerics issuing a
fatwa, or edict, allowing or urging Iraqis to join national security
and military forces to protect Iraqis and their property were not
linked to the association.
Search And Evade
“The best way to
survive an ambush is to avoid an ambush,” Lt. Col. Kevin Stoddard,
head of Product Manager Crew Served Weapons, said.
April 04, 2005 Matthew Cox, Army Times staff writer.
[For information on
how to achieve this desired outcome, find “Search And Evade” at:
Do you have a
friend or relative in the service? Forward this E-MAIL along, or
send us the address if you wish and we’ll send it regularly.
Whether in Iraq or stuck on a base in the USA, this is extra
important for your service friend, too often cut off from access
to encouraging news of growing resistance to the war, at home and
inside the armed services.
Send requests to address up top.
Like The Crusaders
Before Them, The US Forces Are Prisoners In Their Own Fortresses
From the "Green
Zone" in the centre of Baghdad, the US authorities and their Iraqi
satellites can see little of the city and country they claim to
govern. Sleeping around the gloomy republican palace of Saddam
Hussein, they can stare over the parapets or peek through the
machine-gun embrasures on the perimeter wall - but that is as much
as most will ever see of Iraq.
02 April 2005 By Robert Fisk, The
I drove Pat and Alice Carey up the
coast of Lebanon this week to look at some castles. Pat is a builder
from County Wicklow, brave enough to take a holiday with his wife in
Beirut when all others are thinking of running away. But I wanted
to know what he thought of 12th-century construction work.
How did he rate a Crusader keep? The
most beautiful of Lebanon's castles is the smallest, a dinky-toy
palisade on an outcrop of rock near the village of Batroun. You
have to climb a set of well-polished steps - no hand-rails, for this
is Lebanon - up the sheer side of Mseilha castle and then clamber
over doorsills into the dark, damp interior.
So we padded around the battlements
for half an hour. "Strongly made or they wouldn't be still here,"
Pat remarked. "But you wouldn't find any company ready to put up
the insurance. And in winter, it must have been very, very cold."
And after some minutes, he looked at
me with some intensity. "It's like being in a prison," he said.
And he was right. The only view of
the outside world was through the archers' loopholes in the walls.
Inside was darkness. The bright world outside was cut off by the
castle defences. I could just see the splashing river to the south
of the castle and, on the distant horizon, a mountainside. That was
all the defenders - Crusaders or Mamlukes - would have seen. It was
the only contact they had with the land they were occupying.
Up at Tripoli is Lebanon's biggest
keep, the massive Castle of St Gilles that still towers ominously
over the port city with its delicate minarets and mass of concrete
hovels. Two shell holes - remnants of Lebanon's 1975-1990 civil war
- have been smashed into the walls, but the interior of the castle
is a world of its own; a world, that is, of stables and eating halls
and dungeons. It was empty - the tourists have almost all fled
Lebanon - and we felt the oppressive isolation of this terrible
Pat knew his Crusader castles. "When
you besieged them, the only way to get inside was by pushing timber
under the foundations and setting fire to the wood. When they turned
to ash, the walls came tumbling down.
The defenders didn't throw boiling
oil from the ramparts. They threw sand on to the attackers. The
sand would get inside their armour and start to burn them until they
were in too much pain to fight. But it's the same thing here in
Tripoli as in the little castle. You can hardly see the city through
the arrow slits. It's another - bigger - prison."
And so I sat on the cold stone floor
and stared through a loophole and, sure enough, I could see only a
single minaret and a few square metres of roadway. I was in
darkness. Just as the Crusaders who built this fortress must have
been in darkness.
Indeed, Raymond de
Saint-Gilles spent years besieging the city, looking down in anger
from his great fortress, built on the "Pilgrim's Mountain", at the
stout burghers of Tripoli who were constantly re-supplied by boat
from Egypt. Raymond himself died in the castle, facing the city he
dreamed of capturing but could not live to enter.
And of course, far
to the east, in the ancient land of Mesopotamia, there stand today
equally stout if less aesthetic barricades around another great
occupying army. The castles of the Americans are made of
pre-stressed concrete and steel but they serve the same purpose and
doom those who built them to live in prisons.
From the "Green
Zone" in the centre of Baghdad, the US authorities and their Iraqi
satellites can see little of the city and country they claim to
govern. Sleeping around the gloomy republican palace of Saddam
Hussein, they can stare over the parapets or peek through the
machine-gun embrasures on the perimeter wall - but that is as much
as most will ever see of Iraq.
The Tigris river is
almost as invisible as that stream sloshing past the castle of
Mseilha. The British embassy inside the "Green Zone" flies its
diplomats into Baghdad airport, airlifts them by helicopter into the
fortress - and there they sit until recalled to London.
Crusaders in Lebanon - men with thunderous names like Tancred and
Bohemond and Baldwin - used a system of control remarkably similar
to the US Marines and the 82nd Airborne. They positioned their
castles at a day's ride - or a day's sailing down the coast in the
case of Lebanon - from each other, venturing forth only to travel
between their keeps.
"You can see why
the Crusaders couldn't last here," Pat said as we walked out of the
huge gateway of the Castle of Saint Gilles. "I wonder if they even
knew who they were fighting."
I just resisted asking him if he'd
come along on my next trip to Baghdad, so I could hear part two of
the builder's wisdom.
Corporation Memo Says Killing Iraqis Is “Fun”
April 3, 2005 Mark Townsend, The
One of the biggest
private security firms in Iraq has created outrage after a memo to
staff claimed it is 'fun' to shoot people.
Emails seen by The
Observer reveal that employees of Blackwater Security were recently
sent a message stating that 'actually it is "fun" to shoot some
Dated 7 March and
bearing the name of Blackwater's president, Gary Jackson, the
electronic newsletter adds that terrorists 'need to get creamed, and
it's fun, meaning satisfying, to do the shooting of such folk.'
The controversial wording of the
Blackwater bulletin appears to be an attempt to criticise the
'righteous outcry' that followed a recent statement from a senior US
Marine general who, on returning home from Iraq, claimed it was 'fun
to shoot some people'.
Tactical Weekly, the newsletter was sent to environmental activist
Frank Hewetson as well as the firm's staff. Last year Hewetson was
offered a job by Blackwater with a salary of up to £85,000 plus
health benefits to work with its 'military crisis operations support
team.' Although he declined, Hewetson remains on the firm's
Among its various roles in post-war
Iraq, Blackwater has guarded provincial outposts for the Iraqi
coalition provisional authority and had the contract to keep former
chief US envoy Paul Bremer alive.
Defence experts have described
Blackwater as a major player in the field of private arms with an
important role to play in aiding American security in the war on
emails seen by The Observer, from last year, indicate the large
market for civilian contractors in war zones. 'We will probably
require at least 3000-4000 professionals above and beyond what we
have in the Blackwater employment and resource system,' states one.
BRING ALL THE
TROOPS HOME NOW!
Collaborators’ Unit Falls From Grace In Typical Fuckup
April 3, 2005 By James Janega, Chicago
HAQLANIYAH, Iraq -- During its short
life, the Iraq Freedom Guard of maybe 100 fighters had a
distinguished record in Anbar province.
[From the occupation point of view,
But on an afternoon
last month, the Freedom Guard's fall from grace led to the deaths of
two unit soldiers and more questions about how reliable an ally
Iraq's nascent armed forces are.
Seeking to make a point not fully
understood by Marine commanders with whom they worked, guard
fighters finished weeks of missions in Anbar by marching without
clearance to violent Haqlaniyah, a small town on the Euphrates
River. Just hours before U.S. troops were to attempt to root out an
insurgent cell in the town, Iraq Freedom
Guardsmen confronted several young men.
Then, a roadside
bomb blew up next to the Iraqi unit.
soldiers who died, three other Freedom Guardsmen were wounded, and
the Americans who followed that night arrived to find the town
A central issue in the Iraqi military
has been discipline. While army
units have generally been well received by local residents and U.S.
military officials, Anbar residents have decried the Iraqi National
Guard as thieves who mistreat residents and steal from houses they
search. [This is called “winning the hearts and minds of the
people,” an _expression first used by the U.S. occupation in
Vietnam. And we all know how that one ended.]
In the northern reaches of Anbar --
the Euphrates corridor from Haditha to Hit, including Haqlaniyah --
locals have accused the Freedom Guard of the same poor behavior,
something American commanders who work alongside them deny. [Hey,
what do the locals know. They just live there.]
On March 22, they apparently took
things too far.
The unit persuaded their American
liaison to let them finish their mission in Anbar province by
pressing south into a settlement across a gorge from Haqlaniyah.
The liaison was a Marine captain who
has since left Iraq. Lawson said the Iraqis had asked to travel
north but instead made the move south.
commander Lt. Col. Lionel Urquhart said he was later told the Iraqis
wanted to celebrate the conclusion of their operation with a tribal
dance nearer their enemies. Lawson and Capt.
Lance Langfeldt, a tank officer who followed them, said they were
told the guardsmen sought revenge for a member killed earlier by
Marines who watched
said the Freedom Guard roughed up several young men along their
march. Then, soon after the Iraqis danced in the street and fired
their weapons toward Haqlaniyah -- a remote-controlled bomb exploded
a few feet from them.
The blast knocked Langfeldt down into
his tank. One Freedom Guardsman was killed immediately and another
died on the trip to the American base near Haditha. The unit was
evacuated and badly shaken.
the Marines say the future of Iraq remains in the hands of such
truth at last. Indeed so. Which is why the resistance wins the
“Take 15 Bush
Supporters And Throw Them In A House In The Suburbs Of, Say,
Falloojeh For At Least 14 Days.”
April 03, 2005 Baghdad Burning, Girl
Blog from Iraq...
Two years ago, the major part of the
war in Iraq was all about bombarding us with smart bombs and
high-tech missiles. Now there’s a different sort of war- or perhaps
it’s just another phase of the same war.
Now we’re being
assailed with American media. It’s everywhere all at once.
I’ve been enchanted with the shows
these last few weeks. The thing that strikes me most is the fact
that the news is so… clean. It’s like hospital food. It’s all
organized and disinfected. Everything is partitioned and you can
feel how it has been doled out carefully with extreme attention to
the portions- 2 minutes on women’s rights in Afghanistan, 1 minute
on training troops in Iraq and 20 minutes on Terri Schiavo!
All the reportages are upbeat and
somewhat cheerful, and the anchor person manages to look properly
concerned and completely uncaring all at once.
don’t understand the worlds fascination with reality shows.
Survivor, The Bachelor, Murder in
Small Town X, Faking It, The Contender… it’s endless. Is
life so boring that people need to watch the conjured up lives of
I have a
suggestion of my own for a reality show. Take 15 Bush supporters
and throw them in a house in the suburbs of, say, Falloojeh for at
least 14 days. We could watch them cope with the water problems,
the lack of electricity, the check points, the raids, the Iraqi
National Guard, the bombings, and- oh yeah- the ‘insurgents’.
We could watch
their house bombed to the ground and their few belongings crushed
under the weight of cement and brick or simply burned or riddled
with bullets. We could see them try to rebuild their life with
their bare hands (and the equivalent of $150)…
I’d not only watch
that reality show, I’d tape every episode.
CLASS WAR NEWS
“What’s Going On
Here Is An Attack On The Working Class”
“He Needs To Get
The Hell Out Of Here!”
3.18.05 By GINGER ADAMS OTIS, The
Chief, New York City
The event held
March 7 at the 21 Club on West 52nd St. had all the spectacle of a
Hollywood premiere—an exclusive location, boisterous crowds,
flashing camera lights and a stream of sleek, dark luxury cars.
The only thing
missing was the star of the hour—action-hero-turned-California Gov.
Arnold Schwarzenegger — who chose to arrive through a side-door
service entrance rather than face the people clamoring for him out
“Arnold, Arnold take a stand, don’t be
such a girlie man,” chanted the crowd of public employees including
city firefighters, paramedics, and correction officers, as limo
after limo pulled UP to the gilded art deco entrance of the 21 Club
and disgorged Republican supporters, who spent $1,000 a head for the
privilege of joining the “Governator” inside.
“He won’t face us,”
said Andy Doyle, director of the Los Angeles County Firefighters
Local 1014. ‘Everywhere he goes, we go. We’re
getting on a bus tonight to follow him to Washington and we’ll
protest there, too. Two months ago, when we were digging people out
of mudslides with our hands, he loved California firefighters -- now
he can’t even look me in the eye.”
Mr. Doyle is part
of a loose coalition made up of California nurses, firefighters,
police officers, teachers, correction officers and other public
employees determined to fight Governor Schwarzenegger’s proposed
plan to privatize their pensions and eliminate death benefits for
the families of civil servants who die in the line of duty.
They’ve been following him as he
travels around the country trying to raise at least $50 million from
corporate donors to promote his plan to change state government, and
to line his war chest for a possible re-election run in 2006.
“What’s going on
here is an attack on the working class,” shouted Uniformed Fire
Officers’ Association President Peter Gorman, who took up a bullhorn
to rally the New York workers who came out to show support for their
California counterparts. “And we’re going to show Schwarzenegger
that this is a labor city and a labor state with a working-class
agenda, and he needs to get the hell out of here!”
paramedics, and correctional officers from all over New York— some
from as far away as Buffalo—cheered loudly in response.
over here talking to Pataki,” said Firefighter Steve Closs, who
works in a midtown firehouse. “I don’t like it. Cutting pensions,
taking away benefits, leaving families with almost nothing—the stock
market crashes and what do you have? It’s no good for anybody.”
Hearing for CCNY Anti-Recruiters April 8
Sent: April 03, 2005
Subject: 4.8: Disciplinary Hearings
for CCNY Anti-Recruiters
From: "Ronald B. McGuire" <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 3 Apr 2005 09:55:52 -0400
The City Defense
Campaign is urging supporters to attend the disciplinary hearings of
the three City College students and staff member who were arrested
and suspended without hearings by CCNY President Gregory Williams
for peacefully protesting against military recruiters at a college
The hearings for the students, Hadas
Thier, Justino Rodriguez and Nick Gergren will be on Friday, April
8th at 10 AM. CUNY has not yet informed the students of the room
number. The hearing for Carol Lang, the staff member who was
arrested in her office two days after the demonstration will be on
Thursday, April 14th at 10 AM in room 50, Shepard Hall.
in helping the campaign to defend Carol and the students can get
further information and contact the City Defense Campaign at
City College is at 138th Street and
Convent Avenue. The nearest subway stops are 137th Street on the 1/9
lines or 145th Street on the A-B-C-D lines. The campus is a short
walk from those stations and there are free purple buses to CCNY
from the 145th Street and 137th Street stations.
In Solidarity, Ron McGuire
Experience! EVERY Day Is The Longest Day, For Those At War"
From: "Ward Reilly"
Sent: April 03, 2005
June 18th, 2005.. MARK YOUR CALENDAR,
PLEASE! National anti-war action in New Orleans...
"SOULstice Experience! EVERY day is
the longest day, for those at war"
WE NEED VETERANS AND ACTIVISTS FROM
ALL OVER THE COUNTRY!!!
Stop The War NOW! Troops Home NOW!
9-11 Truth NOW!
We wanted to check in with everyone
and let you know that the initial organizing for the SOULSTICE
EXPERIENCE is nearing its conclusion. Hopefully, in the coming
days, we will be able to reveal the general plan for the action and
begin running the ramps on the details. Please understand that a
level of secrecy is required at this stage of planning, but that all
will be revealed in the very near future.
We are off to a strong start with
involvement now pledged from the core organizers of the Jazz Funeral
for Democracy and many new friends signing on from as far away as
Maryland and Kansas. We continue to email notices to progressive
groups daily and hope to establish SOULSTICE EXPERIENCE as a
We need your help
in this regard. Please get the word out at every opportunity.
We will also need
volunteers willing to take responsibility for the
following: , hosts for sign painting parties, someone to assist our
out of town friends upon their arrival in New Orleans (including
tourist services such as negotiating attractive group rates at cool
hotels), people to oversee leaflet posting in various communities
We have already lined up "volunteers"
to handle the stage, the music, the speakers, the permits, the
marches, children’s area, art exhibits, and media relations. Those
people will be identified in the coming days in the event you would
like to assist in one of those capacities.
Annie & Buddy Spell, Ward Reilly, Bob
Smith, Sheik Richardson, Marty Rowland
LOUISIANA ACTIVIST NETWORK
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