Sunday, February 17, 2019

Could the New Yemen Resolutions Further Erode Congressional War Powers?


Could the New Yemen Resolutions Further Erode Congressional War Powers?
BY LOU FISHER & MANDY SMITHBERGER | FILED UNDER ANALYSIS | FEBRUARY 13, 2019
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U.S. Navy Fire Controlman 3rd Class Hunter Scholl mans a .50-caliber machine gun aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) in the Bab Al-Mandeb Strait, between Djibouti and Yemen, Oct. 7, 2018. (Photo: U.S. Navy / Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jonathan Clay)

Congressional critics of our endless wars have been repeatedly stymied by leadership on both sides of the aisle from engaging in a real debate and vote. That could be changing, however. Recent resolutions to end US military support for the Saudi-led coalition in the Yemen War appear to be a Congressional reassertion of that authority. Still, it’s one step forward, two steps back: some of the language offered in those resolutions, as written, could legitimize and strengthen the executive branch’s broad assertions of its powers to wage war without congressional approval.

Last year, the Senate invoked the War Powers Resolution—the first time it had done so since Congress had passed the War Powers Resolution in 1973—to formalize its disapproval of the executive branch’s use of the US military in the Yemen War. The White House threatened to veto the resolution, and the House was unable to consider the resolution after Republican House leadership attached a provision to a procedural vote on the 2018 farm bill to prohibit considering any war powers resolutions for the rest of the year.
The House and the Senate introduced new resolutions last month that pick up where last year’s fight left off. They both offer stronger language than what the Senate passed last year, but should still be refined further to prevent continued efforts by the executive branch to conduct illegal wars in Americans’ names.
Part of the important context to understand is that when Congress gives the executive branch an inch on these powers, the executive branch takes miles and miles. In 2001 Congress authorized the President “to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.” Since then, each president has read that authorization as broadly as necessary to allow the use of force. The Congressional Research Service found the executive branch has used that authority to deploy our troops to Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Georgia, Kenya, and Somalia—none of which had anything to do with the attacks on our country in 2001. Representatives from both sides of the aisle became concerned enough about these abuses that the House Appropriations Committee supported a measure offered in 2017 by Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) to repeal the 2001 authorization. House leadership prevented a vote on that through a procedure that stripped the repeal language before the bill was considered on the Floor.
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Unconstitutional Presidential Wars
The current war powers debate often misses how Congress has repeatedly allowed the executive branch to improperly infringe upon its authority. Congress allowed President Truman to set a troubling precedent that subsequent presidents have used to continue to improperly expand their war powers.
The expansion of our wars has also been furthered by executive branch interpretations of “associated forces”—a phrase that was not part of the 2001 authorization. The executive branch has argued that by continuing to provide money “through an unbroken stream of appropriations over multiple years,” Congress has tacitly given its approval for those operations. Congressional Research Service analysts wrote that Congressional challenges to hostilities absent authorization were unsuccessful “in large part because Congress continued to appropriate money for military operations.”
If Congress wants to stop the executive branch’s broad reading, they need to push back more forcefully. The Yemen resolution passed by the Senate included a number of loopholes that would allow support to continue. The resolution prohibits the use of American troops or resources in “hostilities,” but it does not explicitly prohibit the indirect assistance the U.S. has provided, such as supplying bombs, aerial targeting assistance, or intelligence sharing. Problems with this ambiguity were raised by Senator Bob Corker (R-TN), then the chair of the Senate Foreign Relations committee. The White House made clear that without additional detail about how hostilities was being defined, it would not interpret the United States’ role as “hostilities.”
The new resolutions clarify that in-flight refueling of non-US aircraft conducting missions is prohibited, but do not prohibit the United States providing bombs or sharing intelligence. If Congress truly wants to stop U.S. involvement in Yemen, it needs to clarify that providing any assistance is prohibited.
Given the Administration’s past interpretation of Congressional intent,  future votes limiting actions in Yemen—and not voting on proposals to revise or repeal  the underlying war authorization language—leave the door wide open to further claims of Congressional acquiescence to the Administration’s broad readings everywhere, including keeping troops in Iraq to check Iran.
Congress’s war powers under the Constitution are clear: it is Congress, not the executive branch, that has the power to declare war.
Nixon vetoed the War Powers Resolution, but Congress overrode the veto. Subsequent Presidents have sought to shield the power of the executive branch by resisting Congress’s attempts to assert itself in this arena. President Trump is likely to veto any legislative effort to restrict his actions in this arena as well, so it is understandable that the resolutions include some ambiguities to garner a veto-proof majority of votes necessary for a significant reassertion of congressional authority. Unfortunately, those ambiguities may undermine further efforts of this Congress and future ones to challenge endless war.
Congress’s war powers under the Constitution are clear: it is Congress, not the executive branch, that has the power to declare war. While the War Powers Resolution passed in 1973 was seen as Congress attempting to reassert those powers, Congress has otherwise allowed its authority in national security to continue to diminish. “The net result was to legalize a scope for independent presidential power that would have astonished the Framers, who vested the power to initiate hostilities exclusively in Congress,” Lou Fisher (co-author of this piece) and former Idaho State University professor David Gray Adler wrote in a 1998 article. As a consequence, the War Powers Resolution “grants to the president unbridled discretion to go to war as he deems necessary against anyone, anytime, anywhere, for at least ninety days. As Arthur Schlesinger Jr. has observed, before ‘the passage of the resolution, unilateral presidential war was a matter of usurpation. Now, at least for the first ninety days, it was a matter of law.’” Fisher and Adler wrote.
Some of the challenges of ending wars came up in the Constitutional Convention, the Congressional Research Service observed in a 2008 report:
Although the U.S. Constitution expressly empowers Congress to declare war, it is notably silent regarding which political body is responsible for returning the United States to a state of peace. Some evidence suggests that this omission was not accidental. During the Constitutional Convention, a motion was made by one of the delegates to modify the draft document by adding the words ‘and peace’ after the words ‘to declare war.’ This motion, however, was unanimously rejected. Convention records do not clearly evidence the framers’ intent in rejecting the motion. (internal citations omitted)
So what options are available to Congress that are realistic in this scenario? One is to legislate what they mean when it comes to the Yemen War: Congress never authorized direct or indirect support of the Saudi government’s bombings, and will not allow the United States to provide direct or indirect support. In the House, the chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Representative Eliot Engel (D-NY), is a cosponsor of the House Yemen resolution and has expressed interest in reevaluating the executive branch’s interpretation of previous war authorizations. Alternatively, Congress could use the appropriations process to prohibit funding for direct or indirect support.
These options require more political courage than we’ve seen Congress demonstrate in regard to military policy for decades, but the direct approach is not only advisable but  essential for restoring Congress’s war powers and protecting our constitutional system.
The Center for Defense Information at POGO aims to secure far more effective and ethical military forces at significantly lower cost.

POGO will continue to devote itself to rooting out waste, fraud, and abuse of power at even the highest levels of government. Give now to support our investigations.
Louis Fisher is Scholar in Residence at The Constitution Project at POGO.

Mandy Smithberger is the Director of the Straus Military Reform Project at the Center for Defense Information at the Project On Government Oversight.

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, February 16, 2019

Baltimore Activist Alert February 17 - 18, 2019

Baltimore Activist Alert February 17 - 18, 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] Redlining – through Feb. 28
6] Hate Has No Home Here -- Feb. 17
7] “Racial Justice Beyond the Self – a two-part talk” – Feb. 17
8] SPCA's 6th Annual Kindness for Paws Art Show – Feb. 17
9] PetValu Adoption Meet and Greet – Feb. 17
10] See the play "Shame 2.0" through Feb. 17
11] SURJ MoCo Meeting & Ally Training – Feb. 17
12] FILM & DISCUSSION WITH KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES – Feb. 17
13] Elsa visits the Baltimore Humane Society – Feb. 17
14] Direct Action Everywhere – Feb. 17
15] Jail Support – Feb. 17
16] Pentagon Protest – Feb. 18
17] Fake Trump Emergency – Feb. 18
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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] – At 10 AM through February 28, check out Undesign the Redline exhibit, hosted by Choose Civility, HCLS Central Branch. Look for tickets at choosecivility.org.  This interactive exhibit explores the history of structural racism and classism, how these designs compounded each other from redlining maps until today, and how we can come together to undesign these systems with intentionality.  Tours, reading lists, events, and more details are at http://choosecivility.org/events/undesign-the-redline-exhibit. See https://www.facebook.com/events/444200232763081/.

6] – On Sun., Feb. 17 from 10 to 11 AM, go to the Hate Has No Home Here: Unity Rally, hosted by Maryland Presbyterian Church, 1105 Providence Rd., Towson 21286.  Show your support for the LGBTQ+, Muslim, & Immigrant Community. Gather in the sanctuary so that people can be warm, and all can participate.  Maryland Presbyterian Church was the target of a hate crime.  Show love and celebrate LGBTQ+ members & neighbors and Muslim and Immigrant neighbors. Sing and respond to hate with love and light. All people of good will are welcome.  See https://www.facebook.com/events/249746119236430/.

7] –  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., Feb. 17, the platform address is “Racial Justice Beyond the Self – a two-part talk.”  Part One: A Time When I Stood Up – celeste doaks.  As an artist, and more specifically as a poet, she builds worlds with her words.   Poet and journalist celeste doaks is the author of “Cornrows and Cornfields” (Wrecking Ball Press, UK, 2015). Visit www.doaksgirl.com or check out the podcast she co-hosts with Anthony Moll called Lit!Pop!Bang! doaks is married to scholar Karl Henzy.

Part Two is A Guest in the Conversation – Dr. Karl Henzy. He is a white professor at an HBCU who teaches and publishes on works of black literature.  In 1993, he joined the faculty of Morgan State University in Baltimore, and after 25 years in Maryland’s largest city, he considers himself a transplanted Baltimorean. He is married to poet celeste doaks.  Call 410-581-2322 or email ask@bmorethical.org

8] –On Sun., Feb. 17 from 11 AM to 2 PM, show up for Maryland SPCA's 6th Annual Kindness for Paws Art Show, hosted by the White Marsh Mall, 8200 Perry Hall Blvd. Office, White Marsh 21236. Go to Macy’s HOME court to see an animal welfare inspired art collection by local students from various schools. This is a Name-Your-Donation Art Sale with all proceeds from "Kindness For Paws" going to support homeless animals at the Maryland SPCA.  Check out https://www.facebook.com/events/2152686578126962/.

9] – National Adoption Weekend continues on Sat., Feb. 17 from noon to 3 PM at the Pet Valu Mount Vernon (North Charles St.) Welcome The Drawing Zoo for a reptile adoption event and BARCS Animal Shelter for a cat adoption event!  Call 410-230-0410! Check out https://www.facebook.com/events/283643668977443/?event_time_id=283643678977442.

10] – DC's Mosaic Theater is offering Just World Ed supporters a 25% discount for Morad Hassan & Einat Weizman's play about Israeli violence & intolerance.  The last show is on Sun., Feb. 17.  For tickets see https://www.atlasarts.org/events/mosaic-theater-company-shame/. "Shame 2.0" is presented at the Atlas Performing Arts Center near Washington DC's Union Station.  The discount applies to any show except the one on February 7. You can learn more about the play and buy tickets here. Just use the coupon code "JWE" at checkout to claim your discount! "Shame 2.0" is described as a production that includes "Comments from the Populace". These apparently consist of readings of many of the hateful and derogatory messages that have been sent to Hassan and his acting partner, Einat Weizman, in recent months.

It's really great that Mosaic has brought this play to Washington DC at this exact time... when members of the U.S. Senate are considering a bill that would help clamp down on the free-speech rights of Americans on matters connected to Israel. Weizman and Hassan's play sharply portrays some of the many ways in which Israel's rightwing governments have already been clamping down on free speech and free expression inside Israel itself.  These attacks on free speech have been accompanied by the Israeli Knesset's recent passage of the "Nation State Law", which yet further curtails the cultural rights of the indigenous Palestinians who make up more than 20% of the country's citizenry.

11] –  On Sun., Feb. 17 from 2 to 4 PM, come to a SURJ MoCo Meeting & Ally Training at Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church, 9601 Cedar Lane, Bethesda 20814.  Are you passionate about working for social change, but are uncertain the best ways to be a good ally to marginalized communities? Have you heard of intersectionality but are confused about how it actually works? Have no fear! This training will focus on how to be an effective and appropriate ally when working for the rights of communities of which you are not a part, and how to be intersectional in all work so that unintentional harm is not done to other communities.  Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) is an organization designed to mobilize white people to work for racial justice through accountable community organizing and education. The training will mainly be geared to White allies of racial justice work but is applicable to being an effective ally to any group of which we are not a part. RSVP HERE: https://goo.gl/forms/ciNzHmgnuS1Su1VE2. NEW MEMBER ORIENTATION runs 1to 2 PM, and the GENERAL MEETING is from 2to 4 PM.

12] – At 2 PM on  Sun. Feb. 17,  see a FILM & enjoy a DISCUSSION WITH KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES DEFENDANTS,  moderated by Dan Zak of the Washington Post.  The Plowshares face 25 years in prison for their nonviolent symbolic disarmament of the Trident nuclear submarine base in GA. This may be their only NYC event before leaving in March or April for trial in Georgia. Liz McAlister (Phil Berrigan's widow), Fr. Steve Kelly, S.J., and Mark Colville of the New Haven C.W. wait in jail for their trial since last April 5, 2018. Catholic Worker co-founder Dorothy Day's granddaughter, Martha Hennessy, Carmen Trotta of the NYC  C.W., Patrick O'Neill of the Garner, NC  C.W. house, and Clare Grady (daughter of John P. Grady of the Camden 28) of the Ithaca C.W. are out on $50,000 bond and ankle monitors. The four will be at the film and discussion. The event will be at the LINCOLN CENTER CAMPUS, FORDHAM UNIVERSITY, 113 W. 60TH ST, NYC -- 12TH FL. LOUNGE.

See a special screening of the documentary “The Nuns, the Priests, and the Bomb.”  The film follows anti-nuclear war activists of the Plowshares movement in their acts of civil resistance at nuclear arms arsenals.  Filmmaker Helen Young will also be present.  This event is co-sponsored by Fordham’s Center for Religion and Culture, the Curran Center for American Catholic Studies, the Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs and Peace and Justice Studies program, Pax Christi Metro-NY, and with the support of NYC Catholic Worker. Contact Professor Jeannine Hill Fletcher at hillfletche@fordham.edu.

Clare Grady’s Trident Analysis: Clare says, "If I hold a cocked gun to a person's head, am I not using the gun?" She explains that Trident is the cocked gun being held the head of the planet! She underlines that Trident, the most powerful weapon system known to humans, "is the ENFORCER of the sinful systems of white supremacy and capitalism which are killing people today, every day!" Clare says, "No one gives away land, labor, and resources without being forced by violence! And Trident is the ultimate weapon of extortion, holding our entire planet hostage. Trident has everything to do with every other weapon of State sponsored violence, from US interventionist wars down to the brutal police killings of Blacks and Brown people throughout communities in the US." There is a fleet of 18 omnicial Tridents (6 US + 4 British Tridents at Kings Bay Naval Base, GA plus 8 more in Tacoma, near Seattle, WA) that threaten all of creation!  

Part of their statement reads, "We believe reparations are required for stolen land, labor and lives....As white Catholics, we take responsibility to atone for the horrific crimes stemming from our complicity with “the triplets," (racism, materialism, and militarism) Only then can we begin to restore right relationships. We seek to bring about a world free of nuclear weapons, racism and economic exploitation."

13] – On Sun., Feb. 17 from 3 to 4 PM, Elsa visits the Baltimore Humane Society, 1601 Nicodemus Rd., Reisterstown 21136.  Elsa, our flawless feline friend, has been hanging out in her foster home and decided it was time for a change. She convinced her foster mom to stop by the Baltimore Humane Society to meet and greet her adoring subjects--or what we at the humane society like to refer to as prospective forever homes.  Her foster mom even agreed to hang out with her while she meets the public! This is a great chance to really get an idea for how Elsa will behave in your home and ask any questions you may have!  Come meet this queen of a cat.  Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/620616868378412/.

14] – On Sun., Feb. 17 from 3:30 PM to 6 PM, Direct Action Everywhere is saying Stop Attacking Whistleblowers.  Full event details are shared in the private group. Get involved at facebook.com/groups/BmoreDxE. In 2016 DxE investigated Pleasant Valley Farms, a supposed free range egg farm supplying to Costco. The crowded barns with starving hens meant cannibalism was rampant. Investigators found a hen whose feathers and sensitive sexual organs had been attacked, she and her sisters were struggling to breathe and there was piles of dead hens all over the farm. For rescuing Ella and exposing the cage free lie, DxE activists, Jason Oliver and Paul Picklesimer were court ordered to pay $300,000 in restitution. This group hopes to hold Costco accountable for this egregious criminal animal cruelty.   In Baltimore, they conduct both disruptive protest and educational outreach supported by PETA.  Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/822225008114654/.

15] – On Sun., Feb. 17 from 4 to  8 PM, get involved in Week #126 Jail Support, hosted by Baltimore Jail Support at Eager St. and Fallsway.  JAIL SUPPORT (or “jail sitting”) means providing support in the form of food & water, rides or bus fare, basic first aid and resource guides to people being released from jail. This happens on Sundays at Central Booking. Bear witness and provide comfort to denaturalize racist police abuse, to resist, and to build relationships within the struggle for a prison-free world. What is needed are water bottles, juice, granola bars, fruit and chips! Cash donations also go a long way. Feel free to drop off items the day of, or post on the event page to set up a time. Go to https://www.facebook.com/events/653358978413406/.

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 Feb. 18, 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] – Join an emergency action.  Donald Trump has declared #FakeNationalEmergency—an illegal power grab from an unhinged man to push his racist, dangerous policies.   Get involved on Presidents Day—Mon., Feb. 18—against Trump's fake crisis and racist deportation force and to stand with immigrant, Muslim, and Black and brown communities to stop Trump's dangerous and illegal power grab. Join a #PresidentsDay protest to fight Trump’s fake crisis and racist deportation force. If you choose to attend an event, you agree to engage in nonviolent, peaceful action, to act lawfully, and to strive to de-escalate any potential confrontations with those who may disagree with our values.

On Mon., Feb. 18 at noon, gather in Lafayette Square (directly north of the White House), WDC 20006. RSVP at https://www.crisisresponse.us/event/crisis-response/16499/signup/?akid=&zip=&source=pfaw. There will be ADA area in front of the stage, ASL/CDI will be available and other disability services will be available. Please email ada@moveon.org with any accessibility questions.  The closest Metro stop is McPherson Square.

It has been said that Gaithersburg & Rockville Rocks AGAINST Power Grabs! On Mon., Feb. 18 at 2 PM, meet at Courthouse Square in Rockville 20850.  See the map at http://tinyurl.com/y3hvzj27. Then march through town of Rockville visible to Route 355, chanting, with signs, and bells and patriotic symbols -- to make the point -- to push back against power grabs! Stay in place protestors, will move up the block to N. Washington St. to be visible to traffic! Use #FakeNationalEmergency & notify friends on social media, and news media – spread the word. RSVP at https://www.crisisresponse.us/event/crisis-response/124426/signup/?akid=&zip=&source=pfaw.

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 De

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Baltimore Activist Alert -- February 15 -- 23, 2019


52] "Last Boat Out of Shanghai" -- Feb. 15
53] WIB peace vigils – Feb. 15
54] White House vigil -- Feb. 15
55] Dealing with North and South Korea – Feb. 15
56] The Ones Who Escaped to Freedom – Feb. 15
57] BARCS Adoption Event -- Feb. 15
58] Economics of Targeted Sanctions -- Feb. 15
59] Black Lives Matter -- Feb. 15
60] The Iran Deal and North Korea – Feb. 15
61] Fundraiser to Support Raquel!  – Feb. 15
62] Ballroom Dancing – Feb. 15
63] Commemoration of Founding Father John Dickinson -- Feb. 16
64] Black History Month Youth and Family Adventure – Feb. 16
65] Peace Vigil – Feb. 16
66] Feeding Hearts First – Feb. 16
67] Take Back the Vote – Feb. 16
68] Our Revolution MD/Baltimore meeting – Feb. 16
69] Cuba 2019 - 60 Years of Revolution – Feb. 16
70] UNPRESIDENTED – Feb. 16
71] CATHOLIC WORKERS AND THE PEACE MOVEMENT – Feb. 22
73] Stop US war on Venezuela – Feb. 23
74] Kings Bay Plowshares are hiring
75] Do you want to join a peace caravan?
76] Emergency Demonstration against an attack on Venezuela or Iran  
77] Donate books, videos, DVDs and records  
78] Do you need any book shelves?
79] Join the Global Zero campaign
80] Peace Park Antinuclear Vigil
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52] – On Fri., Feb. 15 from 11:30 AM to 1 PM,  get over to the Book Launch with Author Helen Zia, hosted by Elliott School of International Affairs and Organization of Asian Studies, 1957 E St. NW, WDC 20052. Tickets are at go.gwu.edu. Zia, the author of "Last Boat Out of Shanghai" will be questioned by Ambassador Julia Chang Bloch, President, U.S.-China Education Trust and former U.S ambassador to Nepal.  Introductory remarks will be delivered by Ambassador Reuben Brigety II, Dean of the Elliott School.  The book is the Epic Story of the Chinese who Fled Mao's Revolution.  The book is a narrative of real people, their personal lives in Shanghai 1937-1949, and later as migrants and refugees to the US and elsewhere as they got caught up in Korean War and the Cold War's global politics. "Last Boat out of Shanghai" is as much about Asian Americans as global migration and is very relevant to current concerns about immigration and refugee crises. Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/308697626516528/.

53] – On Fri., Feb. 15 from noon to 1 PM, join a Women in Black peace vigil. A vigil will take place in McKeldin Square at the corner of Light and Pratt Sts.  STAY FOR LUNCH at Baba's Kitchen.  Warm-up, dry off, and enjoy a vegetarian chili lunch and lots of good conversation. Bring a side or topping for the chili.  There are still places at the table; invite a friend to come along with you.

Another vigil is at Roland Park Place, 830 W. 40th St, Baltimore. 21211. However, if weather is iffy, contact Anne at awyattbr@gmail.com.  Lunch will take place at 1 PM at the RPP Café, 830 W. 40th St., Baltimore 21211.

A third vigil will be in Chestertown, Kent County at Memorial Park at Cross Street and Park Row.  This vigil is looking for more peace bodies on the Eastern Shore.  Welcome to the network, Chestertown Women in Black.

Wear black. Dress for who knows what kind of weather.  Peace signs will be available. When there are others to stand with, you don't need to carry the burden alone. Do this to be in solidarity with others....when everything around us says “Be afraid of the stranger.” Carpool and parking available. Just send an email that you need a ride to: wibbaltimore@peacepath911.org.

54] – On Fri.,  Feb. 15 from noon to 1 PM, join the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker in a vigil urging the powers that be to abolish war and torture, to disarm all weapons, to end indefinite detention, to close Guantanamo, to establish justice for all and help create the Beloved Community! This vigil will take place at the White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. Contract Art @ artlaffin@hotmail.com or at 202-360-6416.

55] – On Fri., Feb. 15 at noon, get the scoop on Dealing with North and South Korea: Can Washington Square the Circle? It takes place at 2075 Rayburn House Office Building, WDC. This is a Capitol Hill briefing with Doug Bandow, Cato Institute; Daniel Davis, Defense Priorities; and Harry Kazianis, Center for the National Interest. President Donald Trump and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un are preparing to reprise last year’s Singapore summit. Denuclearization has not proceeded as far as the administration hoped, but reconciliation between North and South is moving forward, leading to fears of a breach between Seoul and Washington. Indeed, with negotiations over host nation support for US forces stalemated, some South Koreans fear the president might follow through on his threats to withdraw American troops.  The panelists will assess the likely outcome of the summit, the role of the US-South Korean alliance, and discuss strategies to improve stability and promote disarmament. See https://www.cato.org/events/dealing-with-north-and-south-korea.

56] – On Fri., Feb. 15 from noon to 1 PM, get a Lunch Date with History: The Ones Who Escaped to Freedom, hosted by Howard County Historical Society at the Museum of Howard County History, 8328 Court Ave., Ellicott City 21043. Tickets are at 4agc.com.  Paulette Lutz, Deputy Director of the Howard County Historical Society, will lead the discussion. The Museum of Howard County History is proud to host a series of lectures for 2019. Bring your own lunch. Drinks and treats will be provided. Tickets are Free for HCHS Members and only $5 for non-members.  Doors open at 11:30 AM. Each lecture runs noon to 1 PM, followed by an optional tour of the museum until 1:30 PM.  Call 410-480-3250 or email info@hchsmd.org.  Members and non-members should use the upgraded ticketing system to acquire tickets. See https://www.facebook.com/events/341924839729088/.

57] -- On Fri., Feb. 15 from noon to 3 PM,  participate in the BARCS Adoption Event, hosted by Adoptable Cats at Pet Valu Mount Vernon, 1209 N. Charles St., Baltimore 21201.  Adoptable BARCS cats will be at the store, in addition to the resident store cats. Stop by to make some new furry friends.... Adoptions can be conducted on-site, so you can go home right away with a new family member! See https://www.facebook.com/events/369214060323550/.

58] –On Fri., Feb. 15 from 4 to 5 PM,  catch up with The Economics of Targeted Sanctions, hosted by The Institute of World Politics, 1521 16th St. NW, WDC 20036.  About the Lecture: While broad economic sanctions have long been used as instruments of foreign policy, targeted sanctions focusing on specific individuals, entities, and transactions are relatively new and less understood. Dr. Ahn will present some of his recent assessing the economic impact of targeted sanctions, using big data/machine-learning techniques on a unique database of firm and individual-level data. He shall focus on sanctions deployed by the United States and the European Union against primarily Russian targets after the crisis in Ukraine in 2014 as a natural experiment. Dr. Ahn has been able to identify specific impacts on targeted companies by category and by industry and to ascertain the extent to which ‘strategic’ companies received special support (“shielding”) from the Russian state. His work is particularly relevant for anyone who wishes to understand the policy effects of sanctions at both the micro and macro levels, and the extent to which a target state is able or unable to avoid the intended impacts of sanctions.

Dr. Daniel P. Ahn is currently a Professorial Lecturer at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, where he teaches graduate courses on energy economics and conflict, a Senior Advisor at the Rapidan Energy Group, and an advisor for the U.S. government. He was previously the Chief Economist at the U.S. Department of State, where he advised the Secretary and senior principals on a wide range of international economic and security topics relevant to U.S. foreign policy, including global macroeconomic growth, financial stability, economic sanctions, counter-terrorist financing, international trade, and energy security. See https://www.facebook.com/events/312191402739518/.

59] – There is usually a silent vigil on Fridays, from 5 to 6 PM, sponsored by Homewood Friends Meeting, outside the Homewood Friends Meetinghouse, 3107 N. Charles St.  The next scheduled vigil is on Feb. 16. Black Lives Matter.  

60] -- On Fri., Feb. 15 at 6:30 PM hear about the Iran Deal and North Korea in the Lindner Family Commons, Room 602, Elliott School, George Washington University, 1957 E St. NW, WDC 20052.  The speaker is Matthew Henry Kroenig, Associate Professor, the Department of Government, the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University & Deputy Director for Strategy, Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, the Atlantic Council.  The moderator is Andrew Park, President of the Sejong Society and a Non-resident James A. Kelly Fellow at the Pacific Forum, Georgetown University. Look at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/15ZMlDn_uYJeU3dsJ2AO6cWMDfKwA53HLpCMMyeQ7hOc/viewform?edit_requested=true.

61] – On Fri., Feb. 15 from 7 PM to midnight, help out at the Fundraiser to Support Raquel!  It is hosted by United Workers at the Sweet27 bar, 123 W 27th St., Baltimore 21218. Raquel, a longtime UW member and core leader in the Inner Harbor Campaign was recently hit by a car. She has worked in restaurants for more than 2 decades and is now severely limited in how much she is able to work. She has health insurance, but will still have a lot of medical expenses that are not covered. A portion of all food and drink sales go to help support Raquel in her recovery.  If you aren’t able to attend but would like to contribute cash or send a check to Raquel, please send an email to amanda@unitedworkers.org! Check out https://www.facebook.com/events/1168510486666696/.

62] – There is an opportunity to participate in ballroom dancing, usually every Friday of the month, in the JHU ROTC Bldg. at 8 PM.  Turn south on San Martin Dr. from the intersection of Univ. Parkway and 39th St.  Drive on campus by taking the third left turn. The next dance will be on Feb. 15. Call Dave Greene at 301-570-3283; or email eneergdivad@gmail.com.

63] – On Sat., Feb. 16 from 10 AM to noon, get over to the Commemoration of Founding Father, John Dickinson, sponsored by the Quaker Hill Historic Preservation Foundation at the Friends Meetinghouse, 401 N. West St., Wilmington, DE 19801. Join QHHPF and the Friends of Dickinson Mansion in celebrating the legacy of Founding Father John Dickinson and his influence on the American Revolution, our founding documents, and the political leadership of both Delaware and Pennsylvania. Enjoy a performance by Dickinson descendant Evelyn Swensson of Dickinson's rousing "Liberty Song." We will hear fascinating facts about this passionate patriot from historian John Sweeney and lay a beautiful wreath on Dickinson's grave. Refreshments to follow. See https://www.facebook.com/events/238169653740802/.

64] – On Sat., Feb. 16 from 10:30 AM to 4 PM,   enjoy Black History Month Youth and Family Adventure, hosted by Union Lutheran Church York, PA at the National Great Blacks In Wax Museum, 1600 Block of East North Avenue, Baltimore 21213. The Black Love Movement in York will visit a unique, award winning space, the Great Blacks in Wax Museum with a special guided education tour. The website with information on the museum is posted below. Meet at the Voni B. Grimes Gym to catch the charter bus. Meal provided on the bus. Return to York at 4 PM. Tickets are $10 per person (that is a special group reduced rate just for this trip). If you wish to drive separately, the tour is at noon at the museum entrance.  Email reservations are a must as space on the bus is limited. Email youthinunionyork@gmail.com with how many are coming. See http://www.greatblacksinwax.org/index.html.  Go to https://www.facebook.com/events/231587234439648/.

65] – Each Saturday, 11 AM – 1 PM, Chester County Peace Movement holds a peace vigil in West Chester in front of the Chester County Courthouse, High & Market Sts. Go to www.ccpeace.org. Email ccpeacemovement@aol.com

66] –On Sat., Feb. 16 from 11 AM to 2 PM, help out Feeding Hearts First at the Phoenix Shot Tower.  Food, clothing and laughter will be had by all. Look at https://www.facebook.com/events/365006137611234/.

67] – On Sat., Feb. 16 from noon to 3 PM, Take Back the Vote at the Lincoln Memorial, 2 Lincoln Memorial Circle NW, WDC 20037.  March on the National Mall to support the new voting rights bill being introduced. Check out https://www.facebook.com/events/341855773299522/.

68] – Our Revolution MD/Baltimore will begin to kick organizing into the next gear! Come out on Sat., Feb. 16 from 12:30 to 2:30 PM for the Climate Crisis Panel and what it means for Baltimore.  Monthly membership meetings are on the 3rd Saturday of every month 12:30 to 2:30 PM. This meeting will be at the Waverly Library, 400 E 33rd St, Baltimore, MD 21218Panelists will cover climate issues, solutions, activism, and just transitions, at the local, state, and federal level. Panelists include David Smedick, Campaign and Policy Director for Sierra Club Maryland, Greg Wilson, Sunrise Movement Baltimore Hub, Zeke Cohen, Baltimore City Council and Senowa Mize-Fox, Climate Justice Alliance.  As always, the meeting will be potluck, so please bring something to share! Go to ormdbaltimore@gmail.com.

69] – Cuba 2019 - 60 Years of Revolution is the theme on Sat., Feb. 16 at 1 PM at the Marvin Center, Room 309, George Washington University, 800 21st St. NW, WDC. Use the Foggy Bottom Metro (Orange/Silver/Blue Lines). Register at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScplMeaBzUKDvCovHm3R0GkR_ULae152BlZd_mgm1Q5OX-J_A/viewform.  As the Trump administration threatens Cuba with renewed intensity, the socialist nation forges ahead in celebration of the 60th anniversary of the triumph of the Cuban Revolution this year. Join in a dialogue with featured guest MIGUEL FRAGA, First Secretary of the Cuban Embassy in Washington, DC, as well as student activists and longtime friends of Cuba. Email dc@answercoalition.org.

70] -- On Sat., Feb. 16 from 8 to 11 PM, catch UnPresidented! A Political Variety Show, hosted by Single Carrot Theatre, 2600 N. Howard St., Suite 1200, Baltimore 21218. Tickets are at singlecarrot.com.  It's time to get political! President's Day is upon us, and we're cranking things up a notch. Why just have a cabaret when you can have a variety show spectacular? Join in for musical parodies, a politically fueled strip tease, and a cappella renditions of former president's erotic poetry at UnPresidented! Presented as always by your lovely hostess, Miss Sadie, this evening of legislative laughs is not to be missed!  General Admission is $10, and VIP Admission is $30. VIP includes open bar & a front row seat! Visit https://www.facebook.com/events/758564281182939/.

71] –CATHOLIC WORKERS AND THE PEACE MOVEMENT: AN EVENING With DAVE EBERHARDT, BRENDAN WALSH, AND WILLA BICKHAM is happening on Fri., Feb. 22 at 7PM at Red Emma's Bookstore Café, 1225 Cathedral St., across from the Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.  Join Dave Eberhardt, author of “For All the Saints: A Protest Primer” and Brendan Walsh and Willa Bickham of Viva House, authors of “The Long Loneliness in Baltimore” for an evening celebrating the intersections of faith and resistance.  Call 410-235-7507 or email mozela9@comcast.net

72] –  Baltimore will join dozens of cities nationwide to protest U.S. threats to Venezuela on Sat. Feb. 23 at 4 PM at 33rd and N. Charles Sts. at 4 PM with signs and banners, bull horns and chants.  It is sponsored by the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, Baltimore Peace Action and Peoples Power Assembly.  Please promote this event.  There will be a meeting of Baltimore Peace Action on Thurs., Feb. 21 at 7 PM at a place to be determined to make signs and banners. Contact Dick Ochs at 443-846-6638 [textable]. 

73] – The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 are looking for a SHORT-TERM PAID ORGANIZER.  Go to https://www.kingsbayplowshares7.org/help-wanted/ or contact Sarah Cool at 404.449.7893.

74] – Do you have any interest in challenging the Trump administration for reneging on the Iran Deal? If yes, would you be interested in joining a Peace Caravan to the Iranian embassy in Washington, D.C.? Contact Max at 410-323-1607 or mobuszewski2001 at Comcast dot net.  

75] – It is a violation of U.S. law for us to attack a country that has not attacked us, as only Congress can declare war. The Trump administration is nevertheless beating the war drums for war against Iran and Venezuela. The Mueller investigation is tightening the vise, and could cause Trump to attack those countries in order to divert attention from Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Such a military strike would demand an immediate and unequivocal response from us to show that we will not tolerate his abuse of power.

Let's mobilize to show that we the people will not tolerate another military adventure, which would be bound to have profound negative consequences. If a preemptive military strike against Iran or North Korea takes place, then meet outside the War Memorial, 101 N. Gay St., Baltimore, MD 21202. If the attack is before 2 PM local time, then events will begin at 5 PM, local time. If the attack occurs after 2 PM local time, then events will begin at noon, local time, the following day. Contact Max at 410-323-1607 or mobuszewski2001 at Comcast dot net.

76] -- If you would like to get rid of books, videos, DVDs, records, tarps and table cloths, contact Max at 410-323-1607 or mobuszewski2001 at comcast.net.

77] -- Can you use any book shelves? Contact Max at 410-323-1637 or mobuszewski2001 at comcast.net.

78] -- Join an extraordinary global campaign for the elimination of nuclear weapons: http://www.globalzero.org/sign-declaration. A growing group of leaders around the world is calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons and a majority of the global public agrees.  This is an historic window of opportunity.  With momentum already building in favor of Zero, a major show of support from people around the world could tip the balance. When it comes to nuclear weapons, one is one too many.

79] – A Peace Park Antinuclear Vigil takes place every day in Lafayette Park, 1601 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, 24 hours a day, since June 3, 1981. Go to http://prop1.org; call 202-682-4282.

Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-366-1637; Email: mobuszewski2001 [at] comcast.net. Go to http://baltimorenonviolencecenter.blogspot.com/.

“One is called to live nonviolently, even if the change one works for seems impossible. It may or may not be possible to turn the US around through nonviolent revolution. But one thing favors such an attempt: the total inability of violence to change anything for the better" - Daniel Berrigan