Monday, June 24, 2019

Patrick O’Neill will speak on August 9 in Baltimore/ Why we brought hammers to a nuclear fight


Friends,

Patrick O’Neill will speak on August 9 at Homewood Friends Meetinghouse in Baltimore, as part of the 34th annual Hiroshima-Nagasaki Commemoration.  Our good friend Elizabeth McAlister remains incarcerated in Georgia since April 4, 2018.

Kagiso,  Max


  OPINION

Why we brought hammers to a nuclear fight
BY PATRICK O’NEILL
JUNE 15, 2019 01:41 PM, UPDATED JUNE 16, 2019 12:00 AMNaval Submarine Base, Kings Bay, Georgia. (AP Photo / Oscar Sosa)
Naval Submarine Base, Kings Bay, Georgia. (AP Photo / Oscar Sosa)
Naval Submarine Base, Kings Bay, Georgia. (AP Photo / Oscar Sosa)
On April 4, 2018, the 50th anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King’s assassination, I joined six other Catholic pacifists in an attempt to symbolically enflesh the prophet Isaiah’s command to “beat swords into plowshares” (Is. 2:4).
After cutting a lock, we entered Naval Station Kings Bay in St. Marys, GA with hammers, baby bottles of blood and crime scene tape to expose the horrific D-5 nuclear weapons aboard the Trident submarines that imperil life as we know it on Planet Earth.
Kings Bay is home port to six Trident submarines. Each Trident can carry 24 D-5 missiles, each of which can carry up to eight 100-kiloton nuclear warheads. Trident is the most insidious and evil weapon of mass destruction ever constructed.
Once inside Kings Bay, in an attempt to smash an idol, I hammered and poured blood on a cement statue of a D-5 at a missile shrine display. The government charged the seven of us with three felonies (depredation of government property, destruction of government property, conspiracy) and misdemeanor trespass.
Three of our group — Fr. Steve Kelly, S.J., Elizabeth McAlister (widow of the late Catholic anti-war prophet, Philip Berrigan), and Catholic Worker Mark Colville, remain incarcerated in the Glynn County Jail in Brunswick, GA. McAlister turned 79 and Kelly turned 70 while incarcerated.
The others, Martha Hennessy (granddaughter of Catholic Worker Movement founder, Dorothy Day), Clare Grady, Carmen Trotta, and I, have been out under a cash bond and on house arrest with a curfew and electronic ankle monitors for more than a year. Kelly, McAlister and Colville refused the bond conditions.
For more than a year the case has been tied up in pretrial motions. We are expecting to go to trial this summer. If convicted, the seven of us will likely go to prison.
Efficacy was not my motivation for joining this group. My faith led me to address the sinfulness of nuclear weapons. We live in a world where nuclear weapons on perpetual hair-trigger alert have become “normal.”
We used high drama as a wake-up call to hopefully get people thinking about the fate of the earth and human survival. Never before has our world been more at risk of the prospect of nuclear war. The Doomsday Clock, maintained by The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, stands at two minutes to midnight.
President Donald Trump frequently engages in chest-thumping, and he bragged that he has the “biggest button,” a reference to nuclear weapons. Trump alone, under the vested power of the executive branch, can decide to use nuclear weapons under any circumstances.
Trump backs nuclear weapons expansion, and he has vowed to pull the U.S. out of the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty that was signed by Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev. INF led to nearly 2,700 short- and medium-range missiles being eliminated, and an end to a dangerous standoff between U.S. and Soviet nukes in Europe. In addition, in July, 2017, an overwhelming majority of the world’s nations — but not the United States — voted to adopt the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons — a landmark international agreement that establishes a pathway to nuclear disarmament.
The seven Kings Bay defendants are parents of 20 children. We want to assure a nuclear-free world for the generations to come. Humans must turn away from war-making, and find ways to embrace nonviolent solutions to international conflicts. I don’t relish a prison sentence, but I consider it a small price to pay if we peacemakers can help prevent the use of nuclear weapons.
We should take to heart the warning of Dr. King: “The choice today is no longer between violence and nonviolence. It is either nonviolence or nonexistence.”
(Patrick O’Neill and his wife, Mary Rider, cofounded the Fr. Charlie Mulholland Catholic Worker House in Garner, an intentional community that provides hospitality to women and children in crisis.)
Patrick O'Neill (N&O file photo)
Patrick O'Neill (N&O file photo)

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Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-323-1607; Email: mobuszewski2001 [at] comcast.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/

"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs



Sunday, June 23, 2019

American Historical Amnesia Behind Pompeo’s Claim of ‘40 Years of Unprovoked Iranian Aggression’



American Historical Amnesia Behind Pompeo’s Claim of ‘40 Years of Unprovoked Iranian Aggression’

Brett Wilkins
June 20, 2019
Common Dreams

https://portside.org/sites/default/files/styles/medium/public/field/image/gettyimages622.jpg

   Someone attacked two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week. The Trump administration wants the world to believe that Iran is the culprit. Yet there is no serious evidence that Tehran was behind the attacks on the Norwegian and Japanese ships. Not only is there no proof of Iranian involvement, such an attack by Iran makes no sense at all. Japan and Iran are friends. Just last month, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe — who was visiting Tehran during the tanker incident — affirmed this friendship in the presence of Donald Trump during the US president’s recent state visit to Japan. Most importantly of all, the crew and owner of the Japanese tanker attacked in the gulf vehemently reject the US claim that the vessel was damaged by a mine, asserting instead that a “flying object” struck the ship.

   Still, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blamed Iran for what he called a “blatant assault” on the tankers. Pompeo also said that the attacks “should be understood in the context of 40 years of unprovoked aggression” against the US and other “freedom-loving nations” by Iran. There is no such history. Iran hasn’t started a war since the mid-19th century, when it was still the Persian Empire. The true context which must be understood is one of a century of US and Western exploitation of Iranian people and resources, and decades of US threats and aggression against Iran that once reportedly included a plan to stage a false flag attack very similar to last week’s tanker incident.

Destroying Democracy

  Many Americans suffer a collective historical amnesia that renders a true and complete understanding of the causes, conduct and consequences of their nation’s perpetual conflicts all but impossible. This explains why most Americans trace the origins of US-Iran enmity to the 1979 hostage crisis, when Islamists occupied the US Embassy in Tehran for 444 days and Iran was transformed from close ally to arch-enemy practically overnight. US leaders and media portrayed those young revolutionaries as wild-eyed Muslim fanatics consumed by irrational hatred of the United States. Their legitimate grievances, chief among these the repression and brutality of the US-backed regime they dethroned, were ignored.

    Pompeo’s preposterous claim that the US wants to “restore democracy” to Iran begs the question of when Iranians ever enjoyed democracy in the first place. The closest they ever came was in the early 1950s, when the reformist prime minister Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh set out to end British and American exploitation of Iranian oil resources by nationalizing the assets of companies including the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company, which despite its equitable-looking hyphenation was really a British-owned near-monopoly known today as BP. Iran’s monarchy, led by Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, had sold out his country to foreign capitalists to the extent that one State Department official wrote in 1942 that the US would “soon be in the position of actually running Iran.”

   Emboldened, perhaps, by President Harry S. Truman’s hollow promise to “assist free people to work out their own destinies in their own way,” Iranians rallied behind Mossadegh as he fought to take what was rightfully Iran’s back from foreign predators. In addition to nationalization, he expelled foreign technicians from oil refineries and even broke off diplomatic relations with Britain. Mossadegh’s was the most popular and democratic government Iranians had ever known. Time magazine, in naming him its “Man of the Year”for 1951, called him “the Iranian George Washington.”

   The British were nearly as infuriated by Mossadegh as they had been by the original George Washington, and London enlisted its former colony to hatch a plan to depose the Iranian leader. Truman demurred but his successor, Dwight D. Eisenhower, was game. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles and his brother, Central Intelligence Agency Director Allen Dulles, had both previously worked as lawyers at a firm that represented Anglo-Iranian Oil. In 1953 the CIA launched a coup, codenamed Operation Ajax, which fomented unrest through violence including false flag attacks on religious leaders that were then blamed on pro-Mossadegh communists. A very reluctant Shah was swiftly restored to his throne and Mossadegh was deposed and imprisoned. US corporations then seized control of 40 percent of Iran’s oil fields.

   In order to help the Shah maintain an iron grip on Iranians, the CIA, along with Israel’s Mossad, created SAVAK, the notoriously brutal state security force whose tortures included amputations, electric chairs and anal rape with electric cattle prods. The CIA reportedly taught SAVAK how to torture men and women and filmed these sessions for instructional purposes. Meanwhile, five successive US presidents lavished the Shah with aid and arms. Jimmy Carter, the so-called “human rights president,” feted the dictator at a 1978 White House New Year’s Eve soirĂ©e, toasting his “brilliant leadership” as angry protests against his ill-fated regime’s tyranny raged outside.

“Unprovoked Aggression?”

   Forty years ago, long-simmering animosity toward the United States inevitably boiled over, culminating in the now-familiar events of those 444 days in 1979-81. Instead of acknowledging its role in stoking the flames of revolt, the Carter and Ronald Reagan administrations partnered with an even worse dictator than the Shah, Saddam Hussein in neighboring Iraq, as it attempted to thwart Iran’s nascent Islamic Republic. In 1980 the US encouraged Hussein to invade Iran, providing crucial support— including the transfer of deadly chemical and biological materials Iraq weaponized and unleashed upon Iranians and Iraqi Kurds — in an eight-year war of attrition that claimed more than a million lives. Reagan officials knew for years that Iraq was attacking Iran with WMDs but kept up US support while publicly denying knowledge of Iraq’s heinous war crimes.

  As the war died down, an accidental US attack on Iran further inflamed Iranians. On July 3, 1988, the USS Vincennes, which was in Iranian waters, shot down Iran Air Flight 655, killing all 290 passengers and crew aboard, including 66 children. An indignant Reagan blamed the “barbaric Iranians” for the wholesale aerial slaughter; Vice President George H.W. Bush, who was running for president, infamously spat, “I will never apologize for the United States of America. Ever. I don’t care what the facts are.”

    Fast-forward to the second Bush presidency, when provocation toward Iran escalated to the brink of all-out war. In addition to senior US officials’ constant threats and even jokes about bombing “Axis of Evil” member Iran, the US secretly deployed Special Forces troops inside Iran on reconnaissance missions and to forge alliances with dissident groups. Chief among these was the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK), a State Department-designated terrorist group that had previously assassinated six US officials when it was fighting the Shah’s regime. Despite this, the US military secretly trained MEK fighters while the terror group paid leading US officials to lobby for its cause.

   The Bush administration also pressured the World Bank into suspending emergency relief aid after the 2003 Bam earthquake, which killed more than 26,000 Iranians, and imposed harsh new economic sanctions on Iran which continue to cause great suffering for ordinary Iranians even as a well-connected elite grows fantastically wealthy. Bush-era war plans against Iran reportedly even included a false flag plot hatched in Vice President Dick Cheney’s office to send Navy SEALs in boats disguised as Iranian naval vessels to attack US warships in the Straits of Hormuz.

  The menacing of Iran continued unabated through most of Barack Obama’s administration, when Israeli and/or US assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists, cyber attacks and sabotage — actions that would surely be seen as acts of war if they were committed against the United States — occurred along with the usual threats of war. Meanwhile, the administration sold a record amount of weapons to Iran’s adversaries, further inflaming tensions in the world’s most volatile region. Obama ultimately chose cautions cooperation over confrontation with Iran. His wise decision led to the landmark 2015 Iran nuclear deal, a highly controversial move that faced strong bipartisan opposition from liberal lawmakers as well as from Republicans including neoconservative hawks like John Bolton, who has been itching to bomb Iran for decades — and who is now President Donald Trump’s national security advisor.

The Real Aggressor

  US and Israeli intelligence agencies have long asserted that Iran is not trying to develop nuclear weapons, and even President Trump has admitted that Iran was complying with the terms of the nuclear deal. Trump nevertheless withdrew the US from the agreement, with predictably dangerous consequences as Iran’s leaders, like so many before them, realized that a deal with the United States all too often isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. The administration and its allies in Congress and the corporate mainstream mediahave ratcheted up their warmongering against Iran to a near-fever pitch, all based upon “evidence” every bit as suspect as the lies that led to the disastrous invasion and occupation of Iraq. It is unclear who attacked the Norwegian and Japanese oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week. What is clear is that a world wary of US lies and endless war isn’t buying the Trump administration’s story.

   Actors including Israel, Saudi Arabia and some in the Trump administration seem hell-bent on waging a war against Iran that would ideally end in the overthrow of that country’s Islamist regime. Iran isn’t without its serious faults. However, these pale in comparison to those of the US, which has — and has used—  nuclear weapons, staged or supported numerous coups, attacked half a dozen Middle Eastern countries already this century and nearly encircled Iran with military bases. Iran has no nuclear weapons, no bases within 10,000 kilometers of the United States and has never directly attacked the US or, of course, overthrown its government. Who is the real aggressor here?

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Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-323-1607; Email: mobuszewski2001 [at] comcast.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/

"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs



Baltimore Activist Alert -- June 23 - 25, 2019


18] Immigration Solidarity Event – June 23
19] Conversation with Pakistan’s Ambassador Asad Majeed Khan – June 24
20] Support the immigrants – June 24
21] ROK-U.S. Strategic Forum 2019 – June 24
22] Free screening of “Baltimore's Strange Fruit” – June 24
23] Closing the Gender Gap in Arms Control – June 24
24] Food Rescue Pop-Up at Flourish – June 24
25] Fair Elections Press Conference and Bill Kickoff! –- June 24
26] Housing and the Green New Deal – June 24
27] Get Money Out of Maryland Teleconference – June 24
28] Taxing the Very Rich – June 25
29] Statehood Phone Bank – June 25
30] Fix Nafta -- June 25
31] Peace vigil – June 25
32] Protest killer drone research at JHU – June 25
33] WMD Threats – June 25
34] Think about Brexit – June 25
35] Bystander Training –- June 25
36] Our City is Not for Sale – June 25
37] Beyond Coal meeting – June 25
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18] – You are invited to a special Immigration Solidarity Event at Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church, 9601 Cedar Lane, Bethesda 20814, on Sun., June 23 at 7 PM. RSVP at https://jamieraskin.com/June23Rally.  As the President tries to whip up a new round of anti-immigrant hysteria and roundups, fight for comprehensive immigration reform.  The House recently passed the American Dream and Promise Act to protect millions of DACA and TPS recipients.   

In Maryland, immigrants are a vital part of our communities. But immigrants are again under ferocious attack by President Trump, who has initiated terrifying crackdowns on immigrant communities and is planning increased ICE raids and deportations. We must do everything we can to counter the harsh new turn in immigration policy.  Stand strong in solidarity with immigrant families. Enjoy music and try to offer solace and hope for everyone demoralized and anguished by this Administration's policies.

19] -- On Mon., June 24 at 10 AM hear a Conversation with Pakistan’s Ambassador Asad Majeed Khan at the Carnegie Endowment, 1779 Massachusetts Ave. NW, WDC 20036-2103.  George Perkovich, with Carnegie. Will also participate in the discussion. See https://carnegieendowment.org/2019/06/24/conversation-with-pakistan-s-ambassador-asad-majeed-khan-event-7143

20] – On Mon., June 24 from 11 AM to 12:30 PM, Show Up: When Trump Cracks Down, the Community Fights Back!  This is hosted by New Sanctuary Movement of Philadelphia, 114 N 8th St., Philadelphia 19107-2422. WHEN TRUMP CRACKS DOWN, COMMUNITY FIGHTS BACK.  The chilling message of massive deportations right after Father's Day from the Trump Administration shows one more time the lack of humanity and the violence towards people of color. The Administration creates and perpetuates terror by militarizing borders, putting children and families in cages, and announcing deportation crackdowns meant to intimidate immigrant communities. Do not let fear divide and separate our families. Our greatest strength is in coming together to ORGANIZE, DEFEND, and BUILD the resilient community and visions that will bring us into a better world.

This event will be held outside and will include walking around the block and standing for an extended period of time. It is forecasted to be hot, so prepare accordingly. Call 215- 279-7060.  See https://www.facebook.com/events/2092627811033183/.

21] – On Mon., June 24 from 11 AM to 5 PM, check out the ROK-U.S. Strategic Forum 2019: the Pursuit of Peace Amidst Changing Regional Dynamics at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, 1616 Rhode Island Ave. NW, WDC 20036.  There will be a timely discussion with current and former government officials, scholars, experts, and opinion leaders from the United States and Korea who will participate in a series of panel talks to address the state of the U.S.-ROK alliance, the prospects for the peace building process on the Korean Peninsula, and the changing regional dynamics in East Asia and beyond. Visit https://www.csis.org/events/rok-us-strategic-forum-2019 or https://www.facebook.com/events/2670553349625737/.

22] – On Mon., June 24 from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM, see a free screening of “Baltimore's Strange Fruit,” hosted by Family League of Baltimore, City Garage, 101 West Dickman St., Baltimore 21230.  Family League of Baltimore in partnership with the Local Management Boards of Anne Arundel and Baltimore Counties invite you to see a film by Eric Jackson and Maddie Hardy. Screening will be followed by a Director’s talk and productive conversation about next steps for food sovereignty in Baltimore.  Light lunch will be served!  Email info@familyleague.org.  Look at https://www.facebook.com/events/472133350239875/.

23] -- On Mon., June 24 at 2 PM, get with Closing the Gender Gap in Arms Control, Nonproliferation, and Disarmament at the Carnegie Endowment.  Hear from Renata Dwan, UN Institute for Disarmament Research; Laura Holgate, Nuclear Threat Initiative; and James Acton, Carnegie. Go to https://carnegieendowment.org/2019/06/24/closing-gender-gap-in-arms-control-nonproliferation-and-disarmament-event-7142.

24] –On Mon., June 24 from 3 to 4 PM, there is a Food Rescue Pop-Up at Flourish, 3418 Belair Road, Baltimore 21213-1233.  Bring a bag, and take home healthy, free food! View https://www.facebook.com/events/301851223848295/?event_time_id=301851250514959
This will continue into the future.

25] – On Mon., June 24 from 4 to 6 PM, be at Baltimore City Hall, 100 Holliday St., Baltimore 21202 for a Fair Elections Press Conference and Bill Kickoff! This is hosted by Jews United for Justice – Baltimore. Support City Councilman Kristerfer Burnett as he introduces a bill to create the Fair Elections Fund and Commission. The press conference is at 4 PM, and the bill will be introduced at 5 PM. This bill will make Baltimore City elections more democratic, and our candidates for office more accountable to the people, not corporate campaign donors. RSVP to https://jufj.org/event/baltimore-fair-elex-kickoff/. Look at https://www.facebook.com/events/2053510348291998/.

26] – On Mon., June 24 from 7 to 9 PM, get with Housing and the Green New Deal, hosted by the Metro D.C. Democratic Socialists of America at St. Stephen & the Incarnation Episcopal Church, 1525 Newton St. NW, WDC 20010. Cities are more expensive than ever, with an urgent need for affordable housing hitting DC and communities all over the country. At the same time, the climate crisis is forcing us to rethink how we build and order our lives. Together, these pressures offer an opportunity -- the chance to use frameworks like the Green New Deal to remake housing in the United States and build a sustainable, just life for everyone.  The panel discussion will be moderated by Jeremiah Lowery of DC For Democracy!  You can also follow along on the livestream which will be at facebook.com/ecosocialists.DSA.  See https://www.facebook.com/events/325924484752635/.

27] – Join the Get Money Out of Maryland Teleconference on Mon., June 24 from 8:30 to 9:30 PM.  Call 605-475-6711, code 1136243#.  Work only on brainstorming ideas for participation in the upcoming General Election.

28] – On Tues., June 25 from 9 AM to 5 PM, catch Taxing the (Very) Rich: Finding the Cure for Excessive Wealth Disorder, hosted by the Economic Policy Institute at the Mayflower Hotel, 1127 Connecticut Ave. NW, WDC 20036. Any serious policy agenda geared towards combating inequality and raising living standards for the vast majority must look to ultra-high earners in the top 0.1 percent, who wield disproportionate economic and political power.  The Economic Policy Institute and the Institute for Policy Studies invite you to attend a day-long conference on Taxing the (Very) Rich. Join tax policy experts, activists, advocates, organizers, and elected officials who will be making the case for taxing the very rich—and debating how best to do that. See https://www.facebook.com/events/2170632006348367/.

29] – Can you participate in a DC Statehood Phone Bank on Tues., June 25, Tues., July 2 and Tues., July 9, all from 10 AM to 6 PM at the John A. Wilson Building, 1350 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, WDC 20004 in room G-9. Join the Washington, DC Statehood Office for a DC Statehood Phone Bank. Call state legislatures across the US to raise awareness of DC residents' lack of full and equal voting representation in Congress.   Phones, scripts, materials, and light refreshments will be provided. Consider https://www.facebook.com/events/673834763077915/?event_time_id=673834769744581.

30] – On Tues., June 25 from noon to 1 PM, get to a D.C. Rally: No Vote Until NAFTA 2.0 is Fixed!  The event is hosted by Replace NAFTA at the House Triangle, WDC 20002.  Get tickets at actionnetwork.org.  Trump wants a vote as soon as possible, but if enacted as-is, NAFTA 2.0 would lock in high medicine prices and fail to stop NAFTA’s ongoing outsourcing of jobs and pollution. Join forces with labor unions, health advocates, environmental groups, faith organizations and many more to deliver our united demands for NAFTA 2.0.  Help deliver to Congress the petition demanding elimination of Big Pharma handouts that would lock in high medicine prices, an end to Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), strengthened labor and environmental standards, and swift and certain enforcement. Go to https://www.facebook.com/events/434037564113069/.

31] –  Each Tuesday from 4:30 - 5:30 PM, the Catholic Peace Fellowship-Philadelphia for peace in Afghanistan and Iraq gathers at the Suburban Station, 16th St. & JFK Blvd., at the entrance to Tracks 3 and 4 on the mezzanine.  The next vigil is June 24.  Call 215-426-0364.

32] – Vigil to say "No Drone Research at JHU" each Tuesday at 33rd & North Charles Sts. The next vigil will be on June 25 from 5 to 6 PM. Contact Max at mobuszewski2001 at Comcast dot net or 410-323-1607. 

33] – On Tues., June 25 at 5 PM, WMD and Insider Threats: Who Would Do Such a Thing? This will happen at the Nuclear Threat Initiative, 1776 Eye St. NW, Suite 600, WDC 20006 with Dr. Ronald Schouten of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. A reception will follow.  Check out https://www.tfaforms.com/4742377.

34] – On Tues., June 25 from 6 to 8:30 PM, catch the talk How to Think About Brexit, hosted by Hillsdale College Kirby Center, 227 Massachusetts Ave. NE, WDC 20002. This AWC Family Foundation lecture features John Browne, a partner in Frazier, Browne, and Mayer LLC, an economic and financial data firm. He is a former Conservative Member of Parliament, and he favors Brexit. Register https://www.facebook.com/events/2340303792962765/.

35] – On Tues., June 25 at 6 PM, attend Bystander Training, hosted by Casa Maryland de Baltimore, 2224 E. Fayette St., Baltimore 21231. This workshop is designed for service providers, faith leaders, and community members who are interested in learning how to help prevent and respond to immigration raids or detentions in our neighborhoods and businesses.  See https://www.facebook.com/events/456074175191476/.

36] – On Tues., June 25 from 6 to 9 PM, get over to the NAACP June Policy Forum: Our City is Not For Sale, hosted by the NAACP - Baltimore City Branch and Baltimore Fair Elections at the Arena Players, Inc., 801 McCulloh St., Baltimore 21201. It's no secret that Big Donors call the shots in Baltimore City. A new law creating the Baltimore Fair Elections Fund has the potential to limit the influence of Wealthy Corporate Donors, giving the average resident a bigger say in the direction of our City.

Join Councilmember Kristerfer Burnett and campaign finance experts for this month's forum.  The Public Forum begins immediately after the NAACP Membership Meeting.  Go to https://www.facebook.com/events/862517390770647/.

37] – On Tues., June 25 from 7 to 8:30 PM, get over to an Annapolis Beyond Coal House Meeting, hosted by Sierra Club Maryland Chapter at 3214 Chrisland Drive, Annapolis 21403-4350. Tickets are at act.sierraclub.org. RSVP at https://bit.ly/2I0V7Uw.  Did you know Maryland still has six coal fired power plants, including the Brandon Shores and Herbert Wagner plants in Anne Arundel County? Join the Maryland Sierra Club in the Annapolis area at the home of a Sierra Club member for a conversation about how we can move Anne Arundel County and Maryland Beyond Coal. Our coal power plants still produce 9 million metric tons of CO2 annually, equivalent to nearly 2 million passenger vehicles. They also have significant local air and water pollution impacts on communities. The Sierra Club is undertaking a coal community transition campaign to phase-out the remaining coal fleet in the next decade, while ensuring there is state funding to support impacted workers and communities. Learn more about this exciting campaign, and how you can be involved.  Light refreshments will be served. See https://www.facebook.com/events/703805580057022/.

To be continued.

Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-323-1607; Email: mobuszewski2001 [at] comcast.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/.

"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Baltimore Activist Alert – June 23 – 24, 2019


Baltimore Activist Alert – June 23 – 24, 2019

"I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours." -Martin Luther King Jr.

Friends, this list and other email documents which I send out are done under the auspices of the Baltimore Nonviolence Center.  Go to www.baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com.  If you appreciate this information and would like to make a donation, send contributions to BNC, 325 East 25th Street, Baltimore, MD 21218.  Max Obuszewski can be reached at 410-323-1607 or mobuszewski2001 [at] comcast.net.

1] Books, buttons and stickers
2] Web site for info on federal legislation
3] Get involved with NCNR   
4] Buy an Anti-War Veteran hat  
5] Lawyers Against War
6] “Explore & Live Palestine” from July 11 through July 25, 2019
7] SUPPORT AMAZON WORKERS OF CONSCIENCE
8] Harm Reduction and Healthcare in Baltimore – June 23
9] Donuts & Coffee at Mutt Mart - June 23
10] Protest a war with Iran -- June 23
11] DSA meeting -- June 23
12] Celebrate Churches for Middle East Peace – June 23
13] On the Call for the ERA – June 23
14] Film LEMON TREE June 23
15] Home, Safe and Sound: Storytelling Night June 23
16] Pentagon Protest – June 24
17] Food Rescue – June 24
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1] – Buttons, bumperstickers and books are available.  “God Bless the Whole World, No Exceptions” stickers are in stock. Call Max at 410-323-1607.

2] – To obtain information how your federal legislators voted on particular bills, go to http://thomas.loc.gov/.  Congressional toll-free numbers are 888-818-6641, 888-355-3588 or 800-426-8073. The White House Comment Email is accessible at http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/.

3] – THE ORGANIZING LIST will be the primary decision-making mechanism of the National Campaign of Nonviolent Resistance [NCNR].  It will be augmented by conference calls and possibly in-person meetings as needed.  It will consist of 1 or 2 representatives from each local, regional, or national organization (not coalitions) that wishes to actively work to carry out the NCNR campaign of facilitating and organizing nonviolent resistance to U.S. wars.

To join the ORGANIZING List, please send your name, group affiliation, city and email address to mobuszewski2001 at Comcast dot net.  Different local chapters of a national organization are encouraged to subscribe.  

4] – Get a good-looking black hat which says Anti-War Veteran in the front and Viva House 50th in the back.  The cost is $10. Contact Max at 410-323-1607 or mobuszewski2001 at Comcast dot net.

5] – Jeff Ross, an attorney in Maryland, is interested in gathering with other lawyers to discuss ways in which the legal profession and the law generally can be conceptualized as a peace-building and war-resisting institution and redirected to these ends. Areas to explore might include: 1) ways in which this group could support with legal analysis/writing those lawyers who are representing peace-builders/war-resisters in criminal prosecutions; 2) ways in which, from a more theoretical perspective, the law might be grounded in an ethic of non-violence; and 3) ways in which law students and young lawyers might be exposed to a non-violent vision of the law. All religious, philosophical, and critical perspectives on the law are welcome. The group might want to call itself Lawyers Against War. Jeff can be reached at 443-690-6872 and jross50@hotmail.com.

6] – If you are 18 to 35, don't miss this unique opportunity to visit Palestine! Registration is Now Open at https://kthps.org/join. For more information, please visit: https://kthps.org/.  Know Thy Heritage, Inc. is offering a Leadership Initiative “Explore & Live Palestine” from July 11 through July 25, 2019.  This is a program of The Arab American Institute.  Visit http://www.aaiusa.org/.

7] -- SUPPORT AMAZON WORKERS OF CONSCIENCE.  We are in a deep struggle to support conscience within the high tech community, which may be the only way to prevent a major leap into artificial intelligence warfare that we see the beginnings of in the expanding global U.S. drone war system.  This may be of particular interest to Johns Hopkins' Navy-funded researchers, some of whom have been working on swarming drone technology.

These are not major asks and can be a powerful reinforcement of conscience at an extremely critical moment.  Please consider circulating this link to your lists encouraging people to sign the linked RootsAction petition - https://www.knowdrones.com/blog/2019/3/6/support-amazon-workers-who-dont-want-to-work-for-war and leafletting Whole Foods in your areas. This is a link to the leaflet -- https://gallery.mailchimp.com/dd110b000ca250d868d4f419b/files/107fc695-8af9-4f7e-a523-ecd1d1dfd28f/Wholefoods_Leaflet.pdf. Should you have interest in circulating the links and possibly leafletting, contact Nick Mottern at  nickmottern at gmail.com.

8] – Usually, the Baltimore Ethical Society, 2521 St. Paul St., Baltimore 21218, meets on Sundays, and generally there is a speaker and discussion at 10:30 AM.  On Sun., June 23, the platform address is Harm Reduction and Healthcare in Baltimore and Abroad.  This past year, Natanya Robinowitz received a Fulbright Fellowship.  She promptly moved her family to Catalonia, Spain to study the public health system for people who use drugs. Before moving to Baltimore in 2010, she worked in India, Mexico and Spain.  She is the Executive Director of Charm City Care Connection, which links residents of marginalized communities in Baltimore to high-quality healthcare services and seeks to address any obstacles that might threaten that connection. Natanya received her Master of Science in Public Health from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2012.  Call 410-581-2322 or email ask@bmorethical.org. 

9] – On Sun., June 23 from 11 AM to 1 PM, enjoy Donuts & Coffee at Mutt Mart, 2904 Hamilton Ave., Baltimore 21214. The event is hosted by Adopt a Homeless Animal Rescue / Maryland Friends of Animals and Mutt Mart. Enjoy Baltimore’s BEST dog-friendly brunch. For a suggested donation of $5 to the rescue, Mutt Mart will serve you a donut and bottomless coffee! See https://www.facebook.com/events/410785759501695/.

10] -- We are on the verge of war because Trump withdrew from the Iran nuclear agreement and has led a maximum pressure policy that is imposing devastating sanctions and has instigated action from Iran.  We remember the lies that dragged us into the Iraq war. We remember the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians murdered and U.S. soldiers lost in a senseless war. The people do not have the appetite for another costly war. Whether or not the U.S. drone was in international airspace, it would be reckless for the U.S. to retaliate. The U.S. must de-escalate: immediately remove the sanctions on Iran and initiate talks to reenter the Iran nuclear agreement.  Join CODEPINK on Sun., June 23 from 1 to 2 PM in front of the White House to protest against a war with Iran. Email info@codepink.org. Look up https://www.facebook.com/events/2093600800941005/.

11] – On Sun., June 23 from 2 to 4:30 PM, come to the June General Body Meeting, hosted by the Baltimore Democratic Socialists of America at the Oak Hill Center for Education and Culture, 2239 Kirk Ave., Baltimore 21218.  Find out about organizing and where your place is in the movement! All are welcome. Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/933302563673752/.

12] – On Sun., June 23 at 2 PM until Tues., June 25 at 5 PM, attend Persistent Hope: 35 Years of Churches for Middle East Peace.  Tickets are at cmep.salsalabs.org.  In 2019, Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) celebrates its 35th anniversary of encouraging US policies that actively promote a comprehensive resolution to conflicts in the Middle East. In honor of 35 years, our 2019 Advocacy Summit will look back at everything CMEP has accomplished over the past three-and-a-half decades, as well as what our work will look like going forward and the opportunities to work for peace and justice that will come. See https://www.facebook.com/events/348951685657476/.

13] – On Sun., June 16 from 4 to 5 PM, get on The CALL - ERA Education Program at Katrina's Dream, PO Box 32003, WDC 20007.  Tickets are at www.katrinasdream.org.  Please come each Sunday and help build the groundswell. The collaboration of grassroots organizers, lobbyists, and professionals is dedicated to promoting and educating folks across the United States of America to empowering women around the world.

The CALL IN NUMBER is 563.999.2090, the CONFERENCE NO: 898879#.  Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/1710130249022424/?event_time_id=1710130255689090.

14] – Baltimore Palestine Solidarity as part of its FILM NIGHT series will show LEMON TREE on  Sun., June 23 at 6 PM at Homewood Friends Meeting, 3107 N. Charles St., Baltimore 21218 in the basement (next to the side entrance. See the trailer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_j1llK3Fco.  A Palestinian widow earns her living tending to her late father's lemon grove. When an Israeli government minister moves next door and declares the grove a potential security threat, she struggles to defend her peaceful livelihood. Personal drama gives way to political controversies as she forms an unexpected bond with the minister's lonely wife and takes her protest - with the help of her young lawyer all the way to the Israeli Supreme Court.  The film is 1 hour and 46 minutes long and will be followed by a brief discussion.  Homemade Arabic food will be available before and after the film. Go to https://www.facebook.com/events/2306289379456733/.

15] – On Sun., June 23 from 6 to 9 PM, enjoy Home, Safe and Sound: Storytelling Night, hosted by CWS at Busboys and Poets, 2021 14th St. NW, WDC 20009. This is World Refugee Day Open Mic Night - open to all performance art (storytelling, poetry, song, dance, etc.) Welcome by Andy Shallal, founder of Busboys and Poets, who will introduce the emcee, Emmy-nominated journalist and activist Ahmed Shihab Eldin.  See https://www.facebook.com/events/2286576231598789/.

16] – There is a weekly Pentagon Peace Vigil from 7 to 8 AM on Mondays, since 1987, outside the Pentagon Metro stop.  The next vigil is June 24, and it is sponsored by the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker.  Email artlaffin@hotmail.com or call 202-882-9649.  The vigil will be outside the Pentagon's south Metro entrance and in the designated "protest zone" behind bicycle fences across from the entrance to the Metro.  By Metro, take Yellow Line and get out at the "Pentagon" stop. Do not go to the Pentagon City stop! Go up south escalators and turn left and walk across to protest area. By car from D.C. area, take 395 South and get off at Exit 8A-Pentagon South Parking. Take slight right onto S. Rotary Rd. at end of ramp and right on S. Fern St. Then take left onto Army Navy Dr. You can "pay to park" on Army Navy Dr.,  and there is meter parking one block on right on Eads St. Payment for both of these spots begin at 8 AM.  No cameras are allowed on Pentagon grounds. Restrooms are located inside Marriott Residence Inn on corner of S. Fern and Army Navy Dr.

17] – On Mon., June 24 at noon, there will be a Food Rescue at Land of Kush, 840 N. Eutaw St., Baltimore 21201. Food Rescue Baltimore is honored to partner with The Land of Kush each and every Monday to bring access to free vegan/plant-based food in the community. Bring a bag. Take what you want from noon to 1PM or while supplies last. No purchase is necessary to take advantage of the Food Rescue Baltimore give away. Items from The Land of Kush's menu are not included in the give-away but will be available for sale. See https://www.facebook.com/events/415842178868197/.

To be continued.

Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-323-1607; Email: mobuszewski2001 [at] comcast.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/.

"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs