Iraq

Submitted by tnjp on October 12, 2010 - 8:54pm.

Despite Army Efforts, Soldier Suicides Continue
By JAMES C. McKINLEY Jr.
US | October 11, 2010

Nearly 20 months after the Army began strengthening its suicide prevention program, the suicide rate among active service members shows little sign of improvement.

FORT HOOD, Tex. - At 3:30 a.m. on a Saturday in August, Specialist Armando G. Aguilar Jr. found himself at the end of his short life. He was standing, drunk and weepy, in the parking lot of a Valero station outside Waco, Tex.

He had jumped out of his moving pickup. There was a police officer talking to him in frantic tones.

Specialist Aguilar held a pistol pointed at his head. This moment had been a long time coming, his family said. He had twice tried to commit suicide with pills since returning from a tough tour in Iraq a year earlier, where his job was to drive an armored vehicle to search for bombs.

Army doctors had put him on medications for depression, insomnia, nightmares and panic attacks. Specialist Aguilar was seeing an Army therapist every week.

But he had been getting worse in the days before his death, his parents said, seeing shadowy figures that were not there, hallucinating that he heard loud noises outside his trailer home. "He wanted help - he was out there asking for help," said his father, Armando Aguilar Sr. "He just snapped. He couldn't control what he was doing no more." Specialist Aguilar was one of 20 soldiers connected to Fort Hood who are believed to have committed suicide this year...

Submitted by tnjp on October 8, 2010 - 1:20pm.

Latest from Robert Greenwald...

Submitted by tnjp on October 7, 2010 - 8:20pm.

Operation Recovery launches publicly today
Today Iraq Veterans Against the War publicly announces our Operation Recovery campaign to Stop the Deployment of Traumatized Troops. Our team of campaign organizers has been working around the clock for the past month to prepare for today's action in Washington, D.C.

You can do your part to raise awareness by sending a Letter to the Editor of your local paper. Click here to send a Letter to your local Editor. We've made it easy.

Today's Action


  • The campaign launch will start at 9:15 AM EST at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center where we will hold a ceremony in honor of all those wounded in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  • From there we march 6 miles to Capitol Hill, where we will testify about our experiences being deployed in war zones while suffering from traumatic injuries.

  • At Capitol Hill, we will read a letter out loud before delivering it to the offices of members of the Senate Armed Services Committee. (The letter is also being sent by mail to officials within the Pentagon and Veterans Administration.) The letters will serve to put these officials on notice that service members and veterans are standing up for their right to heal, and we will expose those responsible for the deployment of troops who are suffering from trauma.


Today's launch marks the beginning of Phase One of our campaign. Over the next several weeks, we will work to investigate the issues, decide which officials will become our campaign's targets, and work to raise awareness about the campaign.

That's where you come in.....

Submitted by tnjp on October 6, 2010 - 12:22pm.



By Kevin Gosztola
Video: Interview w/ Medea Benjamin on Pushing Hard to Get Peace Message into "One Nation" Rally
Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODE PINK and "fair trade" advocacy group Global Exchange talks about the One Nation Working Together rally. She explains what it took for the peace movement to be a part of the organizing committee and what she thinks progressives should do to get their demands for peace and justice acted upon. She also addresses how CODE PINK has been singled out by Jon Stewartas a group contributing to insanity in politics...

Submitted by tnjp on October 6, 2010 - 10:49am.



Harry Belafonte takes President to task over war policy and One Nation should take note

....The 83-year-old Belafonte spoke of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s opposition to the Vietnam war and reminded the crowd of Dr. King's words saying "America would soon come to realize that the war that we were in at that time, that this nation waged in Vietnam, was not only unconscionable but unwinnable."

With a voice strained yet strong, Mr. Belafonte declared "Now today, almost a half-century later as we gather at this place where Dr. King prayed for the soul of this nation, tens of thousands of citizens from all walks of life have come here today to rekindle his dream and once again hope that all America will soon come to the realization that the wars that we wage today in faraway lands are immoral, unconscionable and unwinnable."

Questioning U.S. presence in the region, he continued "The Central Intelligence Agency in its official report, tells us that the enemy we pursue in Afghanistan and in Pakistan, the Al Qaeda, they number less than 50. I say 50 people! Do we really think that sending 100,000 young American men and women to kill innocent civilians, women and children, and antagonizing the tens of millions of people in the whole region somehow makes us secure? Does this make any sense?"

Belafonte then broke ranks with the other speakers and directly challenged President Obama's policy and its consequences. "The President's decision to escalate the war in that region alone costs the nation 33 billion dollars. That sum of money could not only create 600,000 jobs here in America but would even leave us a few billion to start rebuilding our schools, our roads, our hospitals and affordable housing. It could also help to rebuild the lives of the thousands of our returning wounded veterans."

Submitted by tnjp on September 24, 2010 - 1:50pm.


Campaign for GI and Veteran Rights - First sector: Right to Heal
Operation Recovery: A Campaign to Stop the Deployment of Traumatized Troops

On October 7, the 9th anniversary of the Afghanistan invasion, Iraq Veterans Against the War will announce our first-ever strategic campaign, *Operation Recovery: Stop the Deployment of Traumatized Troops. We recognize that we must stop the deployment of all soldiers in order to end the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan. However, we see the deployment of soldiers with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries, and Military Sexual Trauma as particularly cruel, inhumane, and dangerous. *Further more, we know that without the repeated use of traumatized soldiers on the battlefield, the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan could not continue. This is how we will end these wars, by winning our right to heal.*

Do you want to help IVAW end the occupations? Sign the pledge of support for Operation Recovery.

Join our campaign now by making a Pledge of Support

We are reaching out to you, our loyal supporters, before we make the campaign announcement public. In building up to the announcement we need you to help us inform others about this issue and get them to pledge their support for the campaign.

Thousands of troops are being sent to war despite suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and Military Sexual Trauma (MST). Many of us within IVAW have faced or are currently facing deployment as we try to recover from the severe trauma we have already experienced.

While we recognize that we must stop the deployment of all soldiers in order to end the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan, we see the deployment of soldiers with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries, and Military Sexual Trauma as particularly cruel, inhumane, and dangerous. Military commanders across all branches are pushing service members far past human limits for the sake of 'combat readiness.' We cannot allow those commanders to continue to ignore the welfare of their troops who are, after all, human beings.

There is a problem, a basic right is being denied, and we will organize to get it back.

This issue affects all of us. Everyone needs to recognize that the improper standards of care in the military and VA are harming our brothers and sisters, our nation, and only furthers the cycle of dehumanization and destruction of these wars.

Spread the word about the campaign here: https://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5966/tell_a_friend/operationrecover... ...

Submitted by tnjp on March 26, 2009 - 10:05pm.

More than 10,000 march on Pentagon

Scenes from the "March on the Pentagon" Rally


More videos on the flip...

Submitted by tnjp on March 20, 2009 - 8:22pm.

Well, here we are at the Old Capital in Tallytown. All five of us. It's a beautiful evening to protest the sixth anniversary of the Iraq War and Occupation.

YOU shoulda been here, we are... Oh well, we'll light a candle for you anyway.

Submitted by tnjp on March 19, 2009 - 11:00pm.

Our Troops and Iraqis are Still Dying

An Open Letter to the Peace/Anti-War Movement from Iraq Veterans Against the War, Military Families Speak Out, and Veterans For Peace

After six years of war and the historic election of a new President, we as veterans, military and Gold Star families felt an urgent need to reach out to the larger peace/anti-war movements to make our position on Iraq clear during this time of political and economic uncertainty. Iraq Veterans Against the War, Military Families Speak Out and Veterans For Peace continue to stand together in our demand to Bring the Troops Home Now! We ask all those who have stood with us in the past to stay faithful to the cause.

President Obama has announced a plan to gradually reduce troop levels in Iraq. Many in the peace/anti-war movements are breathing a sigh of relief, and suggesting that it is time for us to scale back our efforts to bring an end to the occupation of Iraq. But for our troops on the ground, their families and the Iraqi people, the nightmare continues. They need all of us to stay in the struggle. IVAW, MFSO and VFP have been long united in our call for an immediate and complete end to the occupation of Iraq and will not shift our stance under any circumstances...

Submitted by tnjp on March 19, 2009 - 9:12pm.

Peace Grannies Arrested in Times Square Wednesday, March 18th by Joan Wile

Relax, everyone! The New York City police are really on the job these days. With rapists, murderers, bank robbers and dope peddlers, not to mention corporate thieves, rampant throughout the City, they made a significant dent in the crime statistics yesterday, March 18, when they arrested seven grandmothers aged 67 to 90 in Times Square.

The grannies, all members of the Granny Peace Brigade, were sent to jail while protesting at the Times Square recruiting station. Their arrest occurred during what is believed to be the first antiwar protest of the Obama Administration, in an attempt to urge the President to reconsider his decision to retain 50,000 troops in Iraq after the official withdrawal scheduled to be completed in the next 18 months and his order for 17,000 more troops sent to Afghanistan. The women feel strongly that these measures will only result in increased death and destruction for Americans, Iraqis and Afghanis and further solidify anti-American feeling throughout the world.

Said 94-year-old Brigadier Marie Runyon, "Peace can only be achieved through diplomacy and humanitarian aid." The Granny Peace Brigade women are mostly strong supporters of Barack Obama but were responding to his request that his constituency pressure him to do the right thing when they feel he is on the wrong path...

Submitted by tnjp on March 16, 2009 - 10:19pm.

Lake Ella War Commemoration March 19th

A group of Tallahassee citizens advocating an end to U.S. involvement in Iraq, are inviting the community to come to Lake Ella at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 19, 2009, to commemorate the start of the nation’s 7th year in Iraq.

[This is not to mourn the start of our nation’s 7th year of laying waste to Iraq and its people. Tom]

We ask that each person come to the lake with a candle or flashlight. At 8:00 p.m. the candles and flashlights will be illuminated; fifteen minutes later “Taps” will be played.

Meredith McMackin, who lost her son, Marine Cpl. Julian M. Woodall in Iraq in May 2007, hopes that the community will participate in these events in recognition of the on-going war and its effects.

FMI
Meredith McMackin at mlmcmackin(at)aim.com or 544-0506.

Operation Iraq Liberation 6th Anniversary Candle Light Vigil - March 20, 2009
7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

American Friends Service Committee, Gold Star Families for Peace, Iraq Veterans Against the War, National Organization for Women, Military Families Speak Out, Pax Christi, Tallahassee Network for Justice and Peace, Veterans for Peace, Vietnam Veterans Against the War members and friends will join again to mourn the tortured, the hundreds of thousands of war dead, the destruction of Iraq society and humankind's historical legacy.
Candles will be provided.
Donations accepted.

East of the Florida's Old Capitol's steps.
Apalachee Parkway and South Monroe
Tallahassee, FL
Park behind the flag off Calhoun. :
850-322-1509

“Cut and Glue Party” for 2nd annual ”Peace in the Park" March 22nd

“Cut and Glue Party” to make flags to honor those US soldiers, sailors, marines and airman who have died or were wounded in the Iraq War. We will be displaying them at Railroad Square for the “Peace in the Park” event which is April 19th.in Railroad Square Art Park. We are going to install 4,300 purple flags-each flag representing one American life lost in Iraq or Afghanistan as well as 10 wounded Americans [Each flag could also represent 50 murdered Iraqis and 100 Iraqi children that suffer from ACUTE MALNUTRITION over and above the rate under Saddam because of our destruction of Iraq’s infrastructure since 2003], but they don’t] .

“Cut and Glue” Party will be at Anne Allen’s home
Sunday, March 22nd, 2:00 PM
FMI
Jeannie Lancaster at lancaster996(at)gmail.com

Submitted by tnjp on March 13, 2009 - 10:53pm.

170 Organizations Request Special Prosecutor for Bush-Cheney

A movement is building around a simple statement at http://prosecutebushcheney.org

Organizations and individuals are signing on, and 170 organizations have already taken the lead.

Next week United for Peace and Justice will ask its 1,400 member groups to consider signing on.

Most of the 170 national and local groups signed onto this movement before the release of seven Justice Department memos from 2001-2002 in which top officials claimed the right to disregard the Fourth Amendment, Habeas Corpus, and Posse Comitatus:
http://afterdowningstreet.org/node/40420

Most of these groups signed on before learning that the CIA had destroyed 92, not 2, "interrogation" tapes:
http://afterdowningstreet.org/node/40360

Most of these groups signed on before the release of Emails in which we discover that British intelligence thought the Iraq weapons claims were laughably dishonest: http://afterdowningstreet.org/node/40684

Most signed on prior to the United Nations declaring rendition illegal:
http://afterdowningstreet.org/node/40627

Would you or your organization like to be cutting edge?
You can sign on at http://prosecutebushcheney.org

Submitted by tnjp on February 28, 2009 - 1:00am.

March on the Pentagon

You can make a difference in building the March 21st March on the Pentagon without leaving your computer!::::::::

Help Spread the Word Online about the March 21st March on the Pentagon

You can make a difference in building the March 21st March on the Pentagon without leaving your computer!

We are asking everyone to spread the word about the new website http://www.PentagonMarch.org by posting a simple message about the demonstration with a link to the website all over the internet.

You can post the message and link on your own website or blog, or on your Facebook or Myspace page. You can also post the message on any blog where you think people would be interested, in online chat rooms and discussion groups, on message boards and listserves, and on the Facebook and Myspace profiles of your friends.

Basically, anywhere you can post a message and link on the internet, you should post about the March 21st March on the Pentagon and the new website http://www.PentagonMarch.org...

Submitted by tnjp on January 20, 2009 - 11:12pm.

ProsecuteBushCheney.org
WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Prosecutions:

Federal:
Add your organization or individual name to joint statement requesting a Special Prosecutor. Ask organizations you're in touch with to sign on. The demand for prosecution has been supported by many members of Congress.


Sign a petition asking Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute any and all government officials who have participated in war crimes. Sign now.


Collect signatures in the real world by printing out this PDF. Please enter the data you collect on the petition online and/or mail the completed (or partially completed) forms to JDS, 4407 Garrison Street NW, Washington DC 20016.


Phone and Email and fax the Office of the Attorney General at 202-514-2001 AskDOJ@usdoj.gov fax:202-307-6777 to request a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute any and all government officials who have participated in war crimes.


In June 2008, 56 Democratic Congress members, led by Congressman John Conyers, wrote to Attorney General Mukasey asking for a Special Prosecutor. Conyers and Congressman Jerrold Nadler wrote to Mukasey again in December 2008. Please ask them to re-send these letters to the new Attorney General, Eric Holder. Conyers 202-225-5126, Nadler 202-225-5635. Nadler says he's drafting a new letter.


Congressman John Conyers has proposed extending statutes of limitations on Bush-Cheney crimes. Help make this happen.


Contact the State Department's Office of War Crimes Issues and urge them to ask Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute any and all government officials who have participated in war crimes.


Here are tips and info. on contacting Congress.


State and Local:
Bush and others can be indicted at the state or district level for murder. Please take these steps. They have also violated state laws against warrantless spying and various other crimes. Persuade or elect a decent prosecutor!

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