Peace & Justice

Submitted by tnjp on December 11, 2007 - 9:30pm.

CodePINK Protest Torture at the White House on International Human Rights Day.

bonus video below the fold, Col. Ann Wright interview...

Submitted by tnjp on December 9, 2007 - 10:23pm.

How to Vote in Primaries and Not Be an Idiot - A Short Instructions Manual
By David Swanson

1. Virtually nobody votes in primaries (or caucuses) compared to general elections. Therefore, each individual primary vote is worth many times what it is in the general election. And, it's more likely to be counted, since there's typically less fraud and abuse of the system in primaries. So, if you vote in general elections, you pretty much have to vote in primaries in order to not be an idiot. Bring a few friends to vote too, and you're practically a genius.

2. If you have to join a party that you don't support in order to vote in a primary, you can always unjoin again immediately after the primary. In the meantime, maybe you'll have helped to create a party you can support. You can even vote in a primary without planning to vote in the general election. If the 50% of Americans who don't vote at all (or even a small fraction of them) voted in primaries, they would determine the candidates in the general elections, in which they might then choose to vote as well...

Submitted by Lydia Vickers on December 9, 2007 - 7:02pm.

Ya'll, check out for a great idea for Christmas (or anytime). The e-cards are the cutest - we will do both.

Dave and I are doing this for our grands, Tatler and Mac. Tatler just started knitting so she will get the "knitting basket" of course. You can buy all or part of different animals and baskets for families all over the world.

Submitted by tnjp on December 9, 2007 - 9:47am.

Deported at Gunpoint by Pakistani Government
By Medea Benjamin
December 7, 2007

On our tenth day in Pakistan, my colleague Tighe Barry and I, both human rights activists with CODEPINK and Global Exchange, were arrested at gunpoint by agents of the Pakistani government. We had just left a student rally and were driving down the streets of Lahore with a car full of Pakistani journalists and lawyers. Two cars and six motorbikes came screeching up, blocked our car, piled out with guns drawn, dragged the journalists and lawyers out of the car, beat the bystanders, and hijacked the car. With the two of us huddled in the back surrounded by shouting police, our captors raced at breakneck speed through the crowded streets of Lahore. We had no idea why we were being abducted or where we were headed...

Submitted by tnjp on December 9, 2007 - 8:44am.

Art meets protest at the Peace Crane installation that Tallahasseeans Who Believe It’s Time to Come Home have set up at Tallahassee's Railroad Square. Nearly 4200 origami peace cranes have been displayed and strung up lining the street and winding through the trees. On Friday evening Dec. 7th hundreds and hundreds of folks passed through the display during visits to the local arts enclave.

The local CBS affiliate graced the event with a 22 second report on Friday...

more pics below the fold...

Submitted by Lydia Vickers on December 7, 2007 - 8:03pm.

Dear All,
Col. Ann Wright is out of jail - they gave her credit for her 1st court date and for yesterday and today was 3 days - we all cried (seriously).

Medea is on the way to the house and we are all going to the Pakistan hearing - NO MONEY FOR PAKISTAN (just in case you want something to call about :-D)

Lastly, check out Democracy NOW today - Sally Newman, our new CP law student was interviewed and she was eloquent. I'm in the black hood (too funny, we're alllll in black hoods) but I have a sign that says Adel Hamad. His lawyer sent me a thank you note today...

Submitted by Lydia Vickers on December 7, 2007 - 8:02pm.

Dear All,
What an amazing day. Got settled in last night and up and at 'em at 6:15 am.

One bummmmmmmmmer! Col. Ann Wright was sentenced to 6 months probation (the strictest kind you've ever heard of - she can't even raise her voice near the Hill) - it was a jury trial and just blew everyone's' mind in the room. Check out the video interview with Bill O'Reilly that Deidra posted for the group not too long ago.

When Gen Petraeus spoke in the Senate in September (not the House where I stood on a chair), Ann said "I am a diplomat for peace". She knows Crocker, didn't interrupt anyone..... it was profiling for sure.

The jury was selected in the morning. They found her guilty! (the judge was the same one who recently let Midge off with a $500 fine - Midge was back on the Hill the next day and the judge (a woman) mentioned that when sentencing Ann. "I gave your friend some leniency and she was back here the next day" (Midge didn't do anything but go up there, don't even know how the judge knew that????)

WORST OF ALL, she also got 3 days in jail and they took her away, right there. She looked freaked out, had tears in her eyes. Her sciatic nerve has been so painful it's hard to walk at times. I wasn't there but the group that was came home bummed, bummed, bummed...

Submitted by tnjp on December 4, 2007 - 7:17am.

Williston, VT: High School Students Shut Down Military Recruitment Offices
06:00 PM Nov 30, 2007
In collaboration with Iraq Veterans Against the War, students from Mount Mansfield Union High School shut down 2 military recruitment offices, encompassing all 5 branches of the military, on Friday. Approximately 75 people united under the banner, “Out of Our Schools – Out of Iraq." ...

Submitted by tnjp on December 1, 2007 - 10:14pm.

More videos below the fold....

Submitted by tnjp on November 28, 2007 - 10:05pm.

Report to UFPJ Member Groups on the 10/27 Regional Demonstrations - Nov. 28, 2007 - Below is a summary report on the October 27th regional mobilization effort.

At the end, you'll see brief reports from each of the 11 regional sites, which come from a wrap-up conference call held about 10 days after 10/27. Many of the regional coalitions have by now had de-briefing sessions -- either in-person meetings and/or conference calls -- and have posted more in-depth reports on their regional page within, or linked to that site. To find those reports, please visit

The first part of this report is based on discussions within the national staff, the administrative committee and the national steering committee of UFPJ, as well as with many of the local/regional organizers. Hopefully, it is a pretty accurate reflection of what happened and some of the challenges that were dealt with. The report also tries to raise some of the issues and concerns that came out of this experience -- things we need to think about as we move ahead...

Submitted by tnjp on November 26, 2007 - 10:27pm.

Ah yes, the plans for permanent occupation of Iraq are finally revealed...
White House Releases "Principles" for Permanent Iraqi Presence
By Spencer Ackerman - November 26, 2007, 11:12AM
So it begins. After years of obfuscation and denial on the length of the U.S.'s stay in Iraq, the White House and the Maliki government have released a joint declaration of "principles" for "friendship and cooperation." Apparently President Bush and Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki signed the declaration during a morning teleconference.

Naturally, the declaration is euphemistic, and doesn't refer explicitly to any U.S. military presence...

Submitted by tnjp on November 25, 2007 - 7:45pm.

Protest activities announced By Paul Flemming November 24, 2007
Here are some of the events of the week announced by organizers on Friday:

  • 6 p.m., Sunday at Free Spirit Community Church in Springfield for a mass meeting.

  • 7 p.m., Monday at Providence FGME Church in Springfield for a political forum.

  • 7 p.m., Wednesday at Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Panama City for a prayer meeting.

  • 7 p.m., Friday, at the Glenwood Community Center in Panama City for a youth rally.

  • 9 a.m., Dec. 1, beginning at Redwood Cemetery for a march to the Bay County Juvenile Courthouse, with a rally set for 11 a.m. at the courthouse.

PANAMA CITY — Six weeks after the verdict in the Martin Lee Anderson case, ministers and activists announced a week of events to mark their outrage at the outcome.

Seven former drill instructors and a camp nurse were cleared of all charges in the death of Anderson, a Panama City teen who died Jan. 6, 2006, after he was struck, kneed and forced to breathe ammonia capsules at a Bay County juvenile boot camp...

Submitted by tnjp on November 23, 2007 - 8:47pm.

War-making is a socialist government program, hobgoblin of the right
posted on November 19th, 2007 by Don Williams
I’m amused when far right ideologues denounce equitable health care, affordable housing and other safety net features of liberal democracies as “socialized medicine” or other derisive labels. Such offenders of language are insulted when I fire back: “There’s nothing more socialized than the U.S. military.” It’s true. Every soldier gets government housing, price-fixed salaries, government education (indoctrination into killing), health care, clothing and much more. And with an annual budget that threatens decades or centuries more of national debt to finance war in the name of “spreading democracy,” children not yet born will pay for our socialized army should civilization last long enough...

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