Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Baltimore Activist Alert - October 28 - 29, 2015

33] Can Tunisia Show the Way – Oct. 28
34] TPP threatens – Oct. 28
35] Climate chaos – Oct. 28
36] Afghanistan Security – Oct. 28
37] Nuclear Free Future Awards – Oct. 28
38] Household Workers Unite – Oct. 28
39] “Erased from Space and Consciousness” – Oct. 28
40] Pope calls us to action – Oct. 28
41] Laudato Si – Oct. 28
42] Egyptian repression – Oct. 28
43] Inequality – Oct. 28
44] Health crisis for children in Gaza – Oct. 29
45] Nuclear Free Award Winners speak – Oct. 29
33] –  As Tunisia struggles to build a stable democracy from its 2011 Arab Spring revolution, it must overcome terrorist attacks, high unemployment, a refugee crisis and the threat of social turmoil. The stakes are region-wide, as Tunisia remains the only one of five Arab Spring countries to be treading a nonviolent, democratic path. A critical figure in Tunisia's evolution-Sheikh Rachid Ghannouchi, the leader of the Islamist movement Nahda, visits the US Institute of Peace, United States Institute of Peace, 2301 Constitution Ave., WDC, on Wed., Oct. 28 from 10 to 11:30 AM to discuss how his country can consolidate its progress- Democratizing Under Fire: Can Tunisia Show the Way?

Sheikh Ghannouchi is a vital voice. His movement, Nahda, led the first post-revolution government, which wrote the country’s new, more democratic, constitution. It is now a coalition partner in the secularist government led by President Beji Caid Essebsi. Sheikh Ghannouchi will deliver remarks on the challenges facing his homeland and its region. He then will join Ambassador William Taylor and author Robin Wright in a discussion that will include questions from the audience.  Go to

34] – Amazon Watch, Sierra Club and Global Trade Watch Invite You to a "Green-Bag Lunch" presentation about a "trade pact" that threatens our climate, communities and democracy on Wed., Oct. 28 from 12:30 to 2 PM  at the Amazon Watch / CIEL Conference Room, 1350 Connecticut Ave. NW, #1100, (above Cosi, Dupont Circle South), WDC. After more than 5 years of negotiation, countries negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) announced that they reached a deal on the agreement this month. Despite the fact that this "trade" agreement would have massive impacts on our environment, healthcare, workers' rights, and much more, TPP governments have negotiated it in secrecy with input from "advisers" from huge multinational corporations. Learn from Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch and Sierra Club about how the TPP has been negotiated, how it threatens our environment and communities, and what people can do to fight back against harmful trade policies. The presenters are Jessa Boehner, International Program Associate at Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, where she helps lead the international campaign against the TPP, and Courtenay Lewis, the Campaign Representative for the Sierra Club's Responsible Trade Program.
35] – In December, negotiators from around the world will convene in Paris to negotiate and agree to a deal to address the challenge of climate change. While most attention has been on the position of major economies like China, Europe, and the United States, one group that has played a role in the negotiations far beyond the size of their populations are the Alliance of Small Island States. Their clear moral authority, as "front-line" states of climate change, shows how soft power can accelerate diplomacy.

  On Wed., Oct. 28 from 12:30 to 1:30 PM, join ASP, 1100 New York Ave. NW, 7th Floor, West Tower, WDC, as it hosts Tony de Brum, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Marshall Islands. He will discuss the importance of the upcoming COP in Paris and how effective climate diplomacy can still prevent the worst impacts of climate change.  At this event, ASP will formally launch a new Perspective Paper - "Climate Diplomacy and American Leadership." Lunch refreshments will be served from noon to 12:30 PM.  Arrive for registration at noon. Check out

36] – The fall of the northern city of Kunduz to the Taliban ignited serious concerns about the ability of the Afghan National Security Forces to maintain stability in their country. While Afghan forces recaptured Kunduz with international support, Taliban forces continue to pressure other northern cities while carrying out operations elsewhere.  President Obama announced a reversal of his decision to remove all U.S. combat troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2016, saying that 5,500 would remain. The fall of Kunduz was a blow to Afghanistan's "national unity" government, which so far has given the impression of being more focused on internal rivalries than on its core responsibilities. How did divisions within the government contribute to the fall of Kunduz? And might the city's ordeal prompt better internal coordination?

  Join The United States Institute of Peace, 2301 Constitution Ave, NW, WDC, on Wed., Oct. 28 from 2:30 to 4:30 PM  for a discussion among experts on these questions and what they may mean for stability in Afghanistan. Visit

37] – On Wed., Oct. 28 from 6 to 9 PM (with a reception at 5 PM), Sister Megan Rice, Michael Walli and Greg Boertje-Obed and several other persons including the Foreign Secretary of the Marshall Islands and Austria's Director of Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament will receive this year's Nuclear Free Future Awards. The ceremony will be in Room B-338 at the Rayburn House Office Building.  RSVP by emailing Victoria Pennacchio,

Beside the Oak Ridge protesters, the Cree First Nation and six individuals are to be honored for their work in the anti-nuclear movements. The awards are sponsored by Beyond Nuclear, Green Cross International and the Heinrich Böll Foundation Washington, and will take place in B-338 Rayburn House Office Building, WDC.  Sister Megan, the 85-year old nun who in July 2012, along with fellow Transform Now Plowshares protesters, Walli and Boertje-Obed, will receive the award in the category of Resistance for their act of nonviolent civil disobedience against the immorality of nuclear weapons.  
Awards are given for “Resistance,” “Education” and “Solutions.” Each award comes with a $10,000 honorarium. The Award ceremony will be hosted by Sen. Ed Markey, D-MA, and will feature music by Paul Winter and David Amraml. Tony de Brum, Foreign Secretary of the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), will receive the award for Solutions. De Brum has led efforts by RMI to get the nine nuclear weapons states to fulfill their disarmament duties under the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, including serving as a co-agent in a law suit against them at the International Court of Justice. The Marshall Islands were the site of 67 U.S. atomic tests during the Cold War that left the region contaminated with deadly radioactivity, forced the evacuation of entire islands and caused long-lasting deadly health effects among the island populations. Minister de Brum personally experienced the atomic detonations as a young boy including the massive 1954 Castle Bravo shot at Bikini atoll, the largest nuclear detonation the world has ever seen. De Brum has been a resolute voice in calling for the complete abolition of nuclear weapons.

Cornelia Hesse-Honegger, a Swiss scientific illustrator, will be honored in the category of Education. In 1987, one year after the Chernobyl nuclear power disaster in Ukraine, Hesse-Honegger began illustrating deformed insects she found in Sweden. Her findings of deformities and mutations in the insect realm caused by exposure to radiation eventually led her to similar studies around Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania, the Nevada test site, near German and French nuclear installations and elsewhere. She concluded the damage to insects was “likely to be caused by the ingestion of radioactive particles.”

In the winter of 2014, youth members of the Cree First Nation community of Mistissini walked nearly 850 kilometers to Montreal from their village in northern Quebec to protest uranium exploration in the province. The march was the culmination of several years’ struggle to stop uranium mining including a 2012 Earth Day rally in Montreal where they led a parade of more than 250,000. Their relentless pursuit of justice for their community resulted in a unanimous decision by delegates of the Grand Council of the Crees’ General Assembly in 2012 to adopt a resolution banning uranium exploration, mining and waste emplacement on their land, known as Eeyou Istchee or “The People’s Land.”  Members of the Cree Youth will be honored with a Special Recognition Award.

Ambassador Alexander Kmnett, Austria’s Director of Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will also receive a Special Recognition award. His voice was instrumental in Austria’s call, during the International Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons in December, 2014 in Vienna, that the nuclear weapons nations fully disarm. Kmnett spoke forcefully on the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons at the 2015 Five-Year Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in April in New York City. This was instrumental in the call by Austria’s foreign minister for a global ban on nuclear weapons because of their catastrophic humanitarian effects, an initiative backed by 159 countries. Go to

The honorary co-hosts of the evening are Senator Edward J. Markey (D-MA), Congressman Jim P. McGovern (D-MA), and Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA). Beyond Nuclear and Green Cross International (GCI) are the NGO co-hosts.  Seven-time Grammy award-winning saxophonist Paul Winter, and composer and musician David Amram, winner of the 2012 Pete and Toshi Seeger Power of Song Award, will provide the musical entertainment.

38] – Join the Institute for Policy Studies’ Black Worker Initiative and the National Domestic Workers Alliance for a deep discussion of compelling personal stories from the leaders and participants on the front lines at Busboys & Poets. 5th and K Sts, 1025 5th St. NW, WDC, on Wed., Oct. 28 from 6:30 to 8 PM. Premilla Nadasen, author of “Household Workers Unite: The Untold Story of African American Women Who Built a Movement,” will discuss and sign the new book, which tells the stories of African American domestic workers and the little-known history of the domestic worker movement with perspectives on race, labor, feminism, and organizing.

Resurrecting a little-known history of domestic-worker activism from the 1950s to the 1970s, Nadasen shows how these women were a far cry from the stereotyped passive and powerless victims; they were innovative labor organizers who tirelessly organized on buses and streets across the United States to bring dignity and legal recognition to their occupation.

Kimberly Freeman Brown, author of “And Still I Rise: Black Women Labor Leaders’ Voices, Power and Promise,” will discuss the Institute for Policy Studies report on black women, unions, and economic and racial justice. Natalicia Tracy from the Brazilian Workers Center in Boston will also be a panelist.

39] – Come to Takoma Park, 235 Carroll St. NW, WDC, on Wed., Oct. 28 from 6:30 to 8:30 PM as Noga Kadman will discuss her book, “Erased from Space and Consciousness,” which analyzes how Israelis perceive the dramatic transformation that took place in the landscape and demography of Israel after the 1948 war, when hundreds of Palestinians towns and village were depopulated.

A dramatic transformation took place in the landscape and demography of Israel after the 1948 war, as hundreds of Palestinian villages throughout the country were depopulated, and for the most part physically erased. How has this transformation been perceived by Israelis?  Kadman's book suggests some answers, based on research that systematically explores aspects of Israeli discourse concerning the depopulated Palestinian villages. Visit

40] – On Wed., Oct. 28 at 7 PM go to St. Vincent’s Speaker’s Series: The Cry of the Earth - How Pope Francis Calls Us to Action on Saving Our Common Home.  This is the last of three talks, and it will be held at St. Vincent DePaul Church, 120 N. Front St., Baltimore 21202. The speaker is Mary Evelyn Tucker, Yale University, she will elaborate on social action and climate change.

41] – On Wed., Oct. 28 from 7 to 9 PM,  participate in A Closer Look, the last of a three part series examining and discussing Pope Francis’ environmental encyclical, Laudato Si. Questions and discussion materials will be mainly drawn from Father Tom Reese’s, “A Readers’ Guide to Laudato Si,” National Catholic Reporter, The National Conference of Catholic Bishops, and Interfaith Power and Light.  This is happening at St. Rose of Lima parish, 11701 Clopper Road, Gaithersburg. 

42] – Professor Emad Shahin of Georgetown was sentenced to death in absentia by the Egyptian regime in May 2015 on fabricated charges. He will be speaking about his experience and his analysis of the regime's escalating repression and crimes against humanity at 301 A St. SE, WDC, on Wed., Oct. 28 from 7 to 9 PM. 

Shahin is a visiting professor of political science at the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and the editor-in-chief of The Oxford Encyclopedia of Islam and Politics. His talk is sponsored by The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) Taskforce for U.S. Accountability in the Middle East and North Africa Region, St. Mark's Mid-East Working Group, Amnesty International, and the National Lawyers Guild-DC Chapter. Contact Benjamin Douglas at

43] –Our economic system has created vast amounts of wealth and opportunity. Indeed, the free market is a defining aspect of America’s identity. But in recent years it has created troubling levels of inequality. Companies by and large are doing well: stock market valuations are high, and corporations are flush with cash. But the benefits aren’t being widely shared. Few good jobs are being created. And the disparity between rich and poor is becoming far greater.

This year’s Ignatius Forum will bring together a prominent panel of experts at the Washington National Cathedral, 3101 Wisconsin Ave. NW, WDC, on Wed., Oct. 28 at 7:30 PM.  The Nancy and Paul Ignatius Program was created in recognition of Nancy and Paul’s service and commitment to Washington National Cathedral and the inspiration they have given to so many to “focus on things that matter.” The fund dedicated in their names helps support this annual program on issues of importance at the intersection of faith and public life.  Go to

44] – Come to the Palestine Center, 2425 Virginia Ave. NW, WDC, on Thurs., Oct. 29 from 9 to 10 AM for a discussion with Dr. Yasser Abu-Jamei, Executive Director of Gaza Community Mental Health Programme, and Ran Goldstein, Executive Director of Physicians for Human Rights, Israel, who will discuss the mental and physical health crisis for children in Gaza and the impact of the blockade. Dr. Abu-Jamei and Mr. Goldstein are on a U.S. tour at the invitation of Rebuilding Alliance, the Gaza Mental Health Foundation, and dozens of medical institutions, universities, faith groups, and advocates including the Seattle Physicians for Social Responsibility, Psychologists for Social Responsibility, Harvard School of Public Health, the Palestine Children's Relief Fund, and Jewish Voice for Peace. Check out

45] – At the Goethe Institut, 812 7th St. NW, WDC, on Thurs., Oct. 29 from 11 AM to 5 PM, the 2015 winners of the international Nuclear-Free Future Award will talk about their efforts to end the uranium fuel chain and offer peaceful, sustainable alternatives to nuclear power and nuclear weapons. The event will be moderated by Gordon Edwards, president of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility and recipient of the 2006 Nuclear-Free Future Award. Organized by Beyond Nuclear, Green Cross International and the Heinrich Böll Foundation Washington. Go to or

To be continued.

Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-366-1637; Email: mobuszewski [at] Go to

"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 

 Alert - October 28 -29, 2015

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