Monday, August 04, 2008

Party hats and party favors for the little prince

Starting with war resistance.  26-year-old Darrell Anderson, of Lexinton, Kenutcky, is an Iraq War veteran -- and a decorated one with a Purple Heart. Serving in the Iraq War drove hom that it was an illegal war, he decided to self-checkout. He went to Canada. He married in Canada. He went through the process of attempting to receive refugee status as so many have.  Then he decided to return to the US and turn himself in at Fort Knox. He stated that his work opposing the illegal war was a way to "make up for things I did in Iraq; I feel I made up for the sins I committed in this war." Due to the fact that the process largely followed what had been outlined ahead of time, other war resisters in Canada were considering it until Kyle Snyder attempted to return shortly after and found out he was yet again lied to. After being discharged, Anderson has continued to speak out and is a member of Iraq Veterans Against the War. (He was present to show support for Lt. Ehren Watada in the court-martial that wasn't. Watada, all this time later, has still not been released from the service even though his service contract expired in December 2006, two months prior to his court-martial.) Anita Anderson, his mother, has also remained active and, most recently, was giving support to Helen Burmeister, mother of US war resister James Burmeister who exposed the kill-teams in IraqAs noted in the Julsy 17th snapshot, Darrell Anderson continues speaking up and supporting other war resisers:

Chris Kenning (Courier-Journal) reported on Helen Burmeister's efforts and spoke with US war resister Darrell Anderson who also went to Canada. Anderson returned September 30, 2006 to turn himself in October 3rd. Like Burmeister, he suffers from PTSD and he also lost his benefits. He told Kenning, "It wasn't the easy choice, it was the hard choice. I lost my GI Bill, my veteran's benefits . . . but I did what's right, and I've still got my pride."
Anderson has gone through it all and continues to give and share with other war resisters.  The illegal war hasn't ended and Darrell hasn't stopped fighting it.  His story would not have ended in 2006 even if he had decided to pretend the illegal war wasn't taking place.  He was already a part of history -- a high point of history -- and he's taken his experiences and his knowledge to share with others in the need.  On Saturday Freeople noted a speech he gave last year:
I joined in '03," 'cause I was broke, I needed money, but I was a young American kid, I wanted to fight in a war. I joined up. [A] month out of training I arrived in Baghdad, Iraq, January '04. Saddam's been captured. And I get there and the guys I'm serving with have been there for six months already; they were there in '03. And I go, "Well, you know what, I think it's come out that, you know, these people had nothing to do with 9/11, there was no Iraqi on those planes. We can see around here there's no Al Qaida, there's no terrorist syndicates in Baghdad, or Iraq. Saddam had stamped 'em out." And I asked my buddies, "Well, you know, we're here to find 'weapons of mass destruction'." And they laughed at me. And I said, "Well, you know, we're here to 'help the people.'" And they laughed at me. And I said, "What's our mission? What's our goal?"...They're like, "All we're trying to do is make it home alive..." [. . .]  In April, they told us, "In a crowded area, if one person shoots at you, kill everybody." [. . .] They [members of the crowd of people] are letting them [the person or persons firing at the U.S. military] attack you. They're no longer innocent if they're there at the time of the crime . . .
War resisters are doing their part to end the illegal war and war resisters in Canada need your help. To pressure the Stephen Harper government to honor the House of Commons vote, Gerry Condon, War Resisters Support Campaign and Courage to Resist all encourage contacting the Diane Finley (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration -- 613.996.4974, phone; 613.996.9749, fax; e-mail -- that's "finley.d" at "") and Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, 613.992.4211, phone; 613.941.6900, fax; e-mail -- that's "pm" at ""). Courage to Resist collected more than 10,000 letters to send before the vote. Now they've started a new letter you can use online here. The War Resisters Support Campaign's petition can be found here. Long expulsion does not change the need for action and the War Resisters Support Campaign explains: "The War Resisters Support Campaign is calling on supporters across Canada to urgently continue to put pressure on the minority conservative government to immediately cease deportation proceedings against other US war resisters and to respect the will of Canadians and their elected representatives by implementing the motion adopted by Parliament on June 3rd. Please see the take action page for what you can do."
There is a growing movement of resistance within the US military which includes Yovany Rivero, William Shearer, Michael Thurman, Andrei Hurancyk, Megan Bean, Chris Bean, Matthis Chiroux, Richard Droste, Michael Barnes, Matt Mishler, Josh Randall, Robby Keller, Justiniano Rodrigues, Chuck Wiley, James Stepp, Rodney Watson, Michael Espinal, Matthew Lowell, Derek Hess, Diedra Cobb, Brad McCall, Justin Cliburn, Timothy Richard, Robert Weiss, Phil McDowell, Steve Yoczik, Ross Spears, Peter Brown, Bethany "Skylar" James, Zamesha Dominique, Chrisopther Scott Magaoay, Jared Hood, James Burmeister, Jose Vasquez, Eli Israel, Joshua Key, Ehren Watada, Terri Johnson, Clara 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, Blake LeMoine, Clifton Hicks, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Logan Laituri, Jason Marek, 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, Wilfredo Torres, Michael Sudbury, Ghanim Khalil, Vincent La Volpa, DeShawn Reed and Kevin Benderman. In total, at least fifty 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. In addition, VETWOW is an organization that assists those suffering from MST (Military Sexual Trauma).
[. . .]
Turning to the US presidential race.  Barack Obama, presumed Democratic presidential nominee, has caved againNow he likes off-shore drilling and sings the joys of compromise.  His latest cave made it a busy day for Amy Goodman who returned to her duties as Chief Cover-Up Artist For Barack. Remember she only plays like she's a journalist.  Ralph Nader is the independent presidential candidate and he is now on the California ballot.  Sharat G. Lin (Bay Area Indymedia) reports he won the Peace and Freedom Party's nomination on Saturday by "a majority of the delegate votes on the first ballot in a four-way contest . . .  Nader and Gonzalez promised at the convention to use their national campaign to boost the Peace and Freedom Party in qualifying for ballots in many other states.  Nader is already said to be polling the support of 6 per cent of the nationwide electorate." Peter Hecht (The Sacramento Bee) reports that the nomination took place "in a packed, sweaty room at the Hawthorn Suites" and that Nader's speech included criticism of the "Democrats and Republicans alike for condoning sustained war, abusing workers and neglecting families. . . .  He prevailed after firing up the crowd with an indictment of the Democratic and Republican parties for supporting 'a state of perpetual war.'  He vowed to fight for a workers' bill of rights and stand up against 'systems of cruel and brutal globalization'."  John Lyon's "Nader Campaign Submits Signatures For Ballot Spot" (Arkansas' Times Record) reports that 2,000 signatures were turned into the Arkansas Secretary of State's office Friday which should get Ralph Nader's name on the ballot and quotes the Nader Team's "regional coordinator for the South," David Peyton declaring, "The people of Arkansas were exceptionally willing to participate in the Democratic process and welcomed our petitioners into their communities from Little Rock to Fayetteville."
This is a biggest ballot access week of the campaign to date for Nader/Gonzalez.
With the addition of California on Saturday, we're currently at 23 states with seven to go to meet our goal of 30 states by the end of the week -- on our way to 45 states by September 20.
This is what we need today:
We need more roadtrippers to collect signatures to put Nader/Gonzalez on the ballot.
Optimum profile for a Roadtripper for Ralph -- energetic, youthful spirit, personable, fun loving, adventure seeking, democracy warrior.
If you can commit a week or more to get Ralph on the ballot in the Mountain West, the South, the Midwest, and the East Coast, contact
This week, we'll be turning in signatures in Maryland, Kansas, South Dakota, Alaska, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Iowa -- to put us at 30 by the end of the week.
We're halfway to our goal of $100,000 by August 10 to fund this 30 state drive.
So, please, donate now whatever you can afford $20, $50, $100 -- let's get it done this week.
Finally, two more installments to the Obama Flip Flop Watch:
Number one:
On May 4, Obama told Tim Russert on Meet the Press that he was willing to debate with "any of my opponents about what this country means, what makes it great."
But on Saturday, Obama campaign manager David Plouffe backed off, saying that Obama would debate only Senator McCain and only in the three rigged debates sponsored by the two parties and paid for by major corporations.
Number two:
Prior to last week, Obama said he was opposed to offshore oil drilling.
Last week, he said he was okay with it.
As we move toward November, and as Obama reveals himself to be the corporate candidate that he is, a significant portion of the American electorate will demand an alternative.
That's why it is so important to put Nader/Gonzalez on the ballot in as many states as possible.
And that is the important ground work we are completing now.
Come September, we will be in a position to demand open debates.
And present the American people with a viable candidacy that will shift the power from the corporations back into the hands of the American people.
If we meet our goal.
So, please, donate now, whatever you can.
And help push us toward our goal of $100,000 by the end of the week.
Together, we will make a difference.
Onward to November.

Truest statement of the week Truest statement of the week II A note to our readers Editorial: Open Up The Debates TV: Reality, Power and 'Reality' Nader '08: Health care and dining The Death of Panhandle Media Captain Caveman Barack Workin' it for Sister Baracka Roundtable Highlights
"Barack's dramatic readings"

1 comment:

Alice said...

Hi Cedric -

More info about P&F and Ralph. Hope it's ok to post it here.

All Good Things,
Ralph Nader Acceptance Speech at Peace and Freedom Convention
Pictures and Video of Event

Live Blog from Event