Saturday, August 1, 2015

Help Malachy Kilbride Shine! by Cindy Sheehan

Malachy Kilbride

I have met thousands of people around the world since my son Casey was killed in the US's illegal and immoral invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2004 and since I camped out in front of George Bush's ranch in 2005 demanding the answer to one simple question: "What noble cause?"

Some have become wonderful friends, but for most people I have met, I would have no way to recall their faces, let alone their names.

However, Malachy Kilbride stands out with his firey red hair, quick smile, wicked sense of humor, and absolute dedication to peace and social justice.

Since I first met Malachy, our relationship has grown because he lives in WashedUp, DeCeit and whenever I plan one of my many actions/shenanigans to confront the Empire in its cancerous heart, I know I can call on Malachy to be the organizer on the ground. In the past, I have offered Malachy a stipend, but he always refuses to take it.

Malachy is a rare person who backs up what he says and follows through with what he promises. I know I can trust him completely and now I have a chance to help Malachy.

Please go to this GIVEFORWARD page to donate whatever you are able to help Malachy get to Madison WI from WashedUp, DeCeit to go on a peace walk withVoices for Creative Non-Violence. Malachy has put his body on the line for peace and humanity countless times and I am now honored to help sponsor Malachy's walk and urge you to do so, too.

We all can't walk, but every little bit can help Malachy be there and send his sponsors updates and reports so it feels like we are there, too. I would love to go on this important walk myself, but I am taking care of my sister Dede Miller through her cancer treatments and I am so glad that Malachy can walk for us, this time.



PO BOX 6264



Friday, July 31, 2015

U.S. vs. Iraq: 25 Years and Counting by Mickey Z.

U.S. vs. Iraq: 25 Years and Counting | Mickey Z.

Mickey Z. -- World News Trust

July 30, 2015

On July 25, 1990, Saddam Hussein entertained a guest at the Presidential Palace in Baghdad: U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie.

Glaspie told the Iraqi president: “I have direct instructions from President (George H.W.) Bush to improve our relations with Iraq. We have considerable sympathy for your quest for higher oil prices, the immediate cause of your confrontation with Kuwait.” 

Glaspie then asked, point blank: “Why are your troops massed so very close to Kuwait’s borders?”

“As you know, for years now I have made every effort to reach a settlement on our dispute with Kuwait,” replied Hussein, deploying his own rendition of wartime spin. “There is to be a meeting in two days; I am prepared to give negotiations only this one more brief chance.”

When asked by Glaspie what solutions would be “acceptable,” Hussein was forthright: “If we could keep the whole of the Shatt al Arab -- our strategic goal in our war with Iran -- we will make concessions. But, if we are forced to choose between keeping half of the Shatt and the whole of Iraq [Note: Hussein viewed Kuwait as part of Iraq] then we will give up all of the Shatt to defend our claims on Kuwait to keep the whole of Iraq in the shape we wish it to be.” 

At this point, ever aware of the power dynamics at play, Hussein queried Glapsie: “What is the United States’ opinion on this?”

“We have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts, such as your dispute with Kuwait,” Glaspie answered. “Secretary (of State James) Baker has directed me to emphasize the instruction, first given to Iraq in the 1960’s that the Kuwait issue is not associated with America.”

Eight days later, Iraq invaded Kuwait and provided the Land of the Free™ with the pretext it needed to commence a relentless onslaught in the name of keeping the world safe for petroleum. Which brings me to a forgotten anniversary. 

While Aug. 6, of course, marks the 70th anniversary of the nuking of Hiroshima, it also marks a quarter-century since the U.S. war against Iraq was initially launched. For most people -- particularly willfully ignorant anti-war activists -- the starting date for the war in Iraq is March 19, 2003. 

However, to accept that date is to put far too much blame on one party and one president. A more accurate and useful starting date is Aug. 6, 1990 when -- at the behest of the United States -- the United Nations Security Council imposed murderous sanctions upon the people of Iraq. 

It is widely accepted that these sanctions were responsible for the deaths of roughly 500,000 Iraqi children under the age of five. U.S. Ambassador the UN in the mid-90s was Madeleine Albright. In 1996, Leslie Stahl asked her on 60 Minutes if a half-million dead Iraqi children was a price worth paying to pursue American foreign policy. Albright famously replied: “We think the price is worth it.”

(Shortly afterwards, Albright was named U.S. Secretary of State by noted liberal Democrat hero, Bill Clinton.)

Mickey Z. is the author of 12 books, most recently Occupy this Book: Mickey Z. on ActivismUntil the laws are changed or the power runs out, he can be found on the Web here and hereAnyone wishing to support his activist efforts can do so by making a donation here.

"U.S. vs. Iraq: 25 Years and Counting" by Mickey Z. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

China's NGO Law: Countering Western Soft Power and Subversion by Eric Draitser

China’s NGO Law: Countering Western Soft Power and Subversion

China has recently taken an important step in more tightly regulating foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs) inside the country. Despite condemnation from so called human rights groups in the West, China’s move should be understood as a critical decision to assert sovereignty over its own political space. Naturally, the shrill cries of “repression” and “hostility toward civil society” from western NGOs have done little to shake the resolve of Beijing as the government has recognized the critical importance of cutting off all avenues for political and social destabilization.

The predictable argument, once again being made against China’s Overseas NGO Management Law, is that it is a restriction on freedom of association and expression, and a means of stifling the burgeoning civil society sector in China. The NGO advocates portray this proposed legislation as another example of the violation of human rights in China, and further evidence of Beijing’s lack of commitment to them. They posit that China is moving to further entrench an authoritarian government by closing off the democratic space which has emerged in recent years.

However, amid all the hand-wringing about human rights and democracy, what is conveniently left out of the narrative is the simple fact that foreign NGOs, and domestic ones funded by foreign money, are, to a large extent, agents of foreign interests, and are quite used as soft power weapons for destabilization. And this is no mere conspiracy theory as the documented record of the role of NGOs in recent political unrest in China is voluminous. It would not be a stretch to say that Beijing has finally recognized, just as Russia has before it, that in order to maintain political stability and true sovereignty, it must be able to control the civil society space otherwise manipulated by the US and its allies.

For full article:

Sunday, July 26, 2015


JULY 25, 2015



Today, Cindy chats with Bruce Gagnon (founder of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space and lifelong activist) about the little talked about/reported upon (not including The Soapbox)
subject of the USA backing neo-Nazis in Ukraine against

As Bruce points out, if one is against US/NATO expansion in the region based on principles of peace and justice, we are being "Putinized" as Putin is being "demonized."

It is possible to be against ALL of the US's military crimes against peace without being major supporters of leaders the US says we all must hate and fear.

Bruce is intelligent, very informed, and articulate for a highly interesting Soapbox.

Please listen and share this link far and wide.




Saturday, July 25, 2015

Hiroshima: 70 Years of Lies and Propaganda by Mickey Z.

Mickey Z. -- World News Trust
July 24, 2015
“It is an atomic bomb. It is the greatest thing in history.”
- President Harry S. Truman (August 6, 1945)

One of the seemingly endless Good (sic) War myths goes a little something like this:
The U.S. had no choice but to drop atomic bombs on Japanese civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Had they not done so, the fanatical Japanese never would have surrendered and millions of brave American soldiers would have perished in the ensuing invasion of the Japanese islands.
As we approach the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, I’ll try (yet again) to answer the question: Why was the bomb used?

The enemy was never fascism
Before confronting the unleashing of the bomb, there is lesser-known myth that must be dealt with: the life-and-death race with German scientists. “Working at Los Alamos, New Mexico,” writes historian Kenneth C. Davis, “atomic scientists, many of them refugees from Hitler’s Europe, thought they were racing against Germans developing a ‘Nazi bomb.’”

Surely, if it were possible for the epitome of evil to produce such a weapon, it would be the responsibility of the good guys to beat der F├╝hrer to the plutonium punch. While such a desperate race makes for excellent melodrama, the German bomb effort, it appears, fell far short of success.
Thanks to the declassification of key documents, we now have access to “unassailable proof that the race with the Nazis was a fiction,” says Stewart Udall, who cites the work of McGeorge Bundy and Thomas Powers before adding: “According to the official history of the British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), those agents maintained ‘contacts with scientists in neutral countries.’” 
These contacts, by mid-1943, provided enough evidence to convince the SIS that the German bomb program simply did not exist. 

Despite such findings, U.S. General Leslie Groves, military commander of the Manhattan Project, got permission in the fall of 1943 to begin a secret espionage mission known as Alsos (Greek for “grove,” get it?). The mission saw Groves’ men following the Allies’ armies throughout Europe with the goal of capturing German scientists involved in the manufacture of atomic weapons.

While the data uncovered by Alsos only served to reinforce the prior reports that the Third Reich was not pursuing a nuclear program, Groves was able to maintain enough of a cover-up to keep his pet project alive. In the no-holds-barred religion of anti-communism, the “Good War” enemy was never fascism. Truman’s daughter, Margaret, remarked about her dad’s early presidential efforts after the death of FDR in April 1945, “My father’s overriding concern in these first weeks was our policy towards Russia.” 

“Saved millions of lives”
The most commonly evoked justification for the dropping of atomic bombs on Japan was to save lives, but was it true? Would such an invasion even have been necessary? Finally, were the actions of the United States motivated by an escalating Cold War with the Soviet Union? Here are the facts that don’t mesh with the long-accepted storyline:

Although hundreds of thousands of Japanese lives were lost in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the bombings are often explained away as a “life-saving” measure -- American lives. Exactly how many lives saved is, however, up for grabs. (We do know of a few U.S. soldiers who fell between the cracks About a dozen or more American POWs were killed in Hiroshima, a truth that remained hidden for some 30 years.) 

In defense of the U.S. action, it is usually claimed that the bombs saved lives. The hypothetical body count ranges from 20,000 to “millions.” In an August 9, 1945 statement to “the men and women of the Manhattan Project,” President Truman declared the hope that “this new weapon will result in saving thousands of American lives.”

“The president’s initial formulation of ‘thousands,” however, was clearly not his final statement on the matter to say the least,” remarks historian Gar Alperovitz. In his book, The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb and the Architecture of an American Myth, Alperovitz documents but a few of Truman’s public estimates throughout the years: 
  • Dec. 15, 1945: “It occurred to me that a quarter of a million of the flower of our young manhood was worth a couple of Japanese cities ...”
  • Late 1946: “A year less of war will mean life for three hundred thousand -- maybe half a million -- of America’s finest youth.”
  • October 1948: “In the long run we could save a quarter of a million young Americans from being killed, and would save an equal number of Japanese young men from being killed.”
  • April 6, 1949: “I thought 200,000 of our young men would be saved.”
  • November 1949: Truman quotes Army Chief of Staff George S. Marshall as estimating the cost of an Allied invasion of Japan to be “half a million casualties.”
  • Jan. 12, 1953: Still quoting Marshall, Truman raises the estimate to “a minimum one quarter of a million” and maybe “as much as a million, on the American side alone, with an equal number of the enemy.”
  • Finally, on April 28, 1959, Truman concluded: “the dropping of the bombs ... saved millions of lives.” 
Fortunately, we are not operating without the benefit of official estimates.

In June 1945, Truman ordered the U.S. military to calculate the cost in American lives for a planned assault on Japan. Consequently, the Joint War Plans Committee prepared a report for the Chiefs of Staff, dated June 15, 1945, thus providing the closest thing anyone has to “accurate”: 40,000 U.S. soldiers killed, 150,000 wounded, and 3,500 missing. 

While the actual casualty count remains unknowable, it was widely known at the time that Japan had been trying to surrender for months prior to the atomic bombing. A May 5, 1945 cable, intercepted and decoded by the United States, “dispelled any possible doubt that the Japanese were eager to sue for peace.” In fact, the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey reported shortly after the war, that Japan “in all probability” would have surrendered before the much-discussed November 1, 1945 Allied invasion of the homeland. 

Truman himself eloquently noted in his diary that Stalin would “be in the Jap War on August 15th. Fini (sic) Japs when that comes about.”

The cold logic of capitalism
Some post-Hiroshima/Nagasaki sentiments questioned the use of the bombs.

“I thought our country should avoid shocking world opinion by the use of a weapon whose employment was, I thought, no longer mandatory as a measure to save American lives,” said General Dwight D. Eisenhower while, not long after the Japanese surrender, New York Times military analyst Hanson Baldwin wrote, “The enemy, in a military sense, was in a hopeless strategic position ... Such then, was the situation when we wiped out Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Need we have done it? No one can, of course, be positive, but the answer is almost certainly negative.” 

So, was it the cold logic of capitalism that motivated the nuking of civilians? 

As far back as May 1945, a Venezuelan diplomat was reporting how Assistant Secretary of State Nelson Rockefeller “communicated to us the anxiety of the United States government about the Russian attitude.”

U.S. Secretary of State James F. Byrnes seemed to agree when he turned the anxiety up a notch by explaining how “our possessing and demonstrating the bomb would make Russia more manageable in the East ... The demonstration of the bomb might impress Russia with America’s military might.”
General Leslie Groves was less cryptic: “There was never, from about two weeks from the time I took charge of this Project, any illusion on my part but that Russia was our enemy, and the Project was conducted on that basis.” 

During the same time period, President Truman noted that Secretary of War Henry Stimson was “at least as much concerned with the role of the atomic bomb in the shaping of history as in its capacity to shorten the war.” What sort of shaping Stimson had in mind might be discerned from his Sept. 11, 1945 comment to the president: “I consider the problem of our satisfactory relations with Russia as not merely connected but as virtually dominated by the problem of the atomic bomb.”

Stimson called the bomb a “diplomatic weapon,” and duly explained that “American statesmen were eager for their country to browbeat the Russians with the bomb held rather ostentatiously on our hip.”
“The psychological effect [of Hiroshima and Nagasaki] on Stalin was twofold,” proposes historian Charles L. Mee, Jr. “The Americans had not only used a doomsday machine; they had used it when, as Stalin knew, it was not militarily necessary. It was this last chilling fact that doubtless made the greatest impression on the Russians.”

It also made an impression on J. Robert Oppenheimer, the scientific director at Los Alamos. After learning of the carnage wrought upon Japan, he began to harbor second thoughts and he resigned in October 1945. In March of the following year, Oppenheimer told Truman: 
“Mr. President, I have blood on my hands.” 
Truman’s reply? 
“It’ll come out in the wash.” 

Later, the president told an aide, “Don’t bring that fellow around again.”
“They’ll spit in your eye”
“Why did we drop (the bomb)?” pondered Studs Terkel, two decades ago. “So little Harry could show Molotov and Stalin we’ve got the cards,” he explained. “That was the phrase Truman used. We showed the goddamned Russians we’ve got something and they’d better behave themselves in Europe. That’s why it was dropped. The evidence is overwhelming. And yet you tell that to 99 percent of Americans and they’ll spit in your eye.”
Let the spitting begin.

Mickey Z. is the author of 12 books, most recently Occupy this Book: Mickey Z. on ActivismUntil the laws are changed or the power runs out, he can be found on the Web here and hereAnyone wishing to support his activist efforts can do so by making a donation here.

Whoops! by Anthony Freda

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

It's a J. Edgar World by Anthony Freda (iRants)

It's not that power corrupts, it is that power attracts the corruptible.

The J. Edgar Hoover model of surveillance, intimidation, blackmail, character assassination, actual assassination

And using corrupt media to spread disinformation is still very much alive in the 21st century.
Technological and psychological advances have turned his most demented, dystopian wet dreams into reality.
We are All in his files now.

He was also trans before it was cool and possibly a self-hating black man.
What a great American trailblazer!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Speaking Truth to Empire with Dan Yaseen

July 20, 2015

On “Speaking Truth to Empire” Dan Yaseen interviews Jeff Brown, an author and blogger who currently lives in China. Jeff grew up in Oklahoma and has also lived in Brazil, Middle East, Africa and France. In 2012, he took a solo trip through China for 44 days and wrote a book, 44Days: Backpacking in China.  His website is