BULLY BOY PRESS & CEDRIC'S BIX MIX -- DC.
FLORIDA SAYS "WE MATTER" AND ADAM C. SMITH PLAYS DUMB. NOT THAT THERE IS ANYTHING DIFFERENT ABOUT EITHER.
SUCK-ASS SMITH DEFENDS THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE IN THEIR DISCRIMINATION OF 46 STATES BY ALWAYS ALLOWING IOWA, NEW HAMPSHIRE, NEVADA AND SOUTH CAROLINA TO HOLD PRIMARIES 1ST -- OR AS THE 4 ARE MORE POPULARLLY KNOWN "THE ITTY BITTY STATES."
THE FLORIDA DEMOCRATIC PARTY REALIZED WHAT THE NATIONAL ORGANIZATION DIDN'T, THEY CAN'T AFFORD TO ANGER FLORIDA RESIDENTS. SO THEY STUCK WITH THE PLAN FOR AN EARLY PRIMARY AND WILL HOLD IT JANUARY 29, 2008.
THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE IS THREATENING TO STRIP FLORIDA OF THEIR DELAGATES. YEAH, GO FOR THAT DUMB ASS D.N.C. KEEP FLOATING THAT THREAT AND SEE HOW MANY DEMOCRATS IN FLORIA BOTHER TO TURN OUT AND VOTE DEMOCRATIC ON ELECTION DAY 2008.
U.S. SENATOR BARACK OBAMA -- STILL BONING UP ON HIS ROLE AS THE COWARDLY LION IN THE DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL RACE -- DID HIS USUAL SPINELESS MOVE AND HAD HIS CAMPAIGN DECLARE THEY "WOULD HAVE NO COMMENT." AND PEOPLE WONDER WHAT HAPPENED TO HIS SURE THING STATUS.
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
Starting with war resistance. The new chair of IVAW Camilo Mejia told his story in Road from Ar Ramadi: The Private Rebellion of Staff Sergeant Mejia, tracing his awakening to the illegal war as he served in it. Elizabeth Wrigley-Field reviews it in the September-October issue of ISR (the review is not currently available online, pages 73-74) noting, "Most of the book recounts Mejia's five months as a staff sergeant and leader of a nine-person squad in Iraq. This account is invaluable not only because it presents a picture of the reality of the occupation -- infused, from the very beginning, with racism, brutality, and incompetence -- but also because it helps us understand the process through which soldiers can become resisters." In Road from Ar Ramadi: The Private Rebellion of Staff Sergeant Mejia, Mejia concludes his story with the kangaroo court-martial and notes what he told the court:
We're all on trial. Not just me, sitting here, but everybody here in uniform, everybody in this country. . . . War crimes? Abuse of prisoners? The U.S. Army? No. A few privates, perhaps, one sergeant; they did that. They did that because they didn't have the courage to do what I did, because they were lost in a situation where it's hard to tell the difference between right and wrong. Perhaps they were afraid not to do what they were told by people who are higher ranking. Perhaps they decided that it was easier to do what everybody else was doing. So now it's easier to judge these people and put them on trial and blame it on them. . . . I'm not saying they're not responsible. They have some responsibility, just like I have some responsibility for the things I did in Iraq. Of course I do. But if we really want to look at ourselves as military and we really want to keep our pride and honor as a military, then we have to start from the top.
At which point the 'judge' interrupts. The same 'judge' that refused to let arguments of the legalities of the illegal war be raised and felt that -- pay attention -- the judiciary had no oversight over the military -- that was something to be left to the Executive and Legislative branches. That's real cute and I'm sure there are other matters that the two branches wish the judiciary would sit out. Wrigley-Field concludes of the book, "Mejia was the first. But he wasn't the last and there are many more to come. We have much to learn from his story."
A Matter Of Conscience is a new documentary about the illegal war and Kevin and Monica Benderman's strength when Kevin realized he was a conscientious objector. Like Mejia, Kevin Benderman is among the early war resisters. A preview of the documentary is available at YouTube. More information on the film can be found at Kevin Benderman's website. A Matter of Conscience: GI Resistance During the Vietnam War is a project by William Short and Willa Seidenberg (an incredible project) and, to be clear, that's not this documentary. (There are other items with that title, I believe Kevin Benderman also wrote a column with that title.) If you're interested in purchasing a copy of the documentary, e-mail Earl Brackett (Minehead Productions) at email@example.com
War resister and Iraq veteran James Burmeister, his wife Angelique and their son Cornell went to Canada. Burmeister has repeatedly spoken about his job in Iraq, the US military assigned him the duty of setting "traps" -- equipment left laying out so that any Iraqi who touched it could be shot for touching US property. Burmeister is far from the only veteran of the illegal worker to speak of this. Today the topic makes the mainstream. Josh White and Joshua Partlow (Washington Post) report that "military court documents" reveal this was being done to provide Iraq targets for "U.S. military snipers" and they note: "'Baiting is putting an object out there that we know they will use, with the intention of destroying the enemy,' Capt. Matthew P. Didier, the leader of an elite sniper scout platoon attached to the 1st Battalion of the 501st Infantry Regiment, said in a sworn statement. 'Basically, we would put an item out there and watch it. If someone found the item, picked it up and attempted to leave with the item, we would engage the individual as I saw this as a sign they would use the item against U.S. Forces.' In documents obtained by The Washington Post from family members of the accused soldiers, Didier said members of the U.S. military's Asymmetric Warfare Group visited his unit in January and later passed along ammunition boxes filled with the 'drop items' to be used 'to disrupt the AIF [Anti-Iraq Forces] attempts at harming Coalition Forces and give us the upper hand in a fight'."
There is a growing movement of resistance within the US military which includes Derek Hess, Brad McCall, Justin Cliburn, Timothy Richard, Robert Weiss, Phil McDowell, Steve Yoczik, Ross Spears, Zamesha Dominique, Jared Hood, James Burmeister, Eli Israel, Joshua Key, Ehren Watada, Terri Johnson, Carla Gomez, Luke Kamunen, Leif Kamunen, Leo Kamunen, Camilo Mejia, Kimberly Rivera, Dean Walcott, Linjamin Mull, Agustin Aguayo, Justin Colby, Marc Train, Abdullah Webster, Robert Zabala, Darrell Anderson, Kyle Snyder, Corey Glass, Jeremy Hinzman, Kevin Lee, Mark Wilkerson, Patrick Hart, Ricky Clousing, Ivan Brobeck, Aidan Delgado, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Stephen Funk, Clifton Hicks, David Sanders, Dan Felushko,Brandon Hughey, Clifford Cornell, Joshua Despain, Joshua Casteel, Katherine Jashinski, Dale Bartell, Chris Teske, Matt Lowell, Jimmy Massey, Chris Capps, Tim Richard, Hart Viges, Michael Blake, Christopher Mogwai, Christian Kjar, Kyle Huwer, Vincent La Volpa, DeShawn Reed and Kevin Benderman. In total, forty-one US war resisters in Canada have applied for asylum.
Information on war resistance within the military can be found at The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline [(877) 447-4487], Iraq Veterans Against the War and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters. Tom Joad maintains a list of known war resisters.
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