Thursday, December 20, 2007

TORTURE IS A MORAL ISSUE!

To supporters of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture

Dear Friends,
Next month NRCAT will reach its second anniversary. In these two short years, we have been able to turn our individual, heartfelt convictions against torture into a meaningful national voice. While we have not been able to end U.S.-sponsored torture, we can feel deeply grateful for the significant witness of religious people across the nation calling for an end to torture and for our many accomplishments, including the following:

We have enabled almost 600 congregations to show the film "Ghosts of Abu Ghraib."
Thousands of people of faith -- at our request -- have written to their senators and representatives calling for an end to U.S.-sponsored torture.
140 religious organizations are now members of NRCAT and some 20,000 people of faith have endorsed the Statement of Conscience "Torture is a Moral issue."
Evangelicals for Human Rights, an anti-torture organization started by NRCAT, has received significant recognition and media coverage because of its outstanding statement "An Evangelical Declaration Against Torture."
We have been a presence in some of the key debates against torture in the House and the Senate including the vote today in the House of Representatives setting one standard for all U.S. interrogations of detainees - the U.S. Army Field Manual.
And we have many efforts underway for next year, including the following:

We are organizing a project in which hundreds of congregations across America will display an anti-torture banner in June (Torture Awareness Month) 2008.
We are planning to host regional and local workshops, speaking tours, and conferences across the nation in 2008 in preparation for a 2009 national conference against torture.
Our newly created NRCAT Action Fund (our 501 (c)(4) partner organization) will be sponsoring a full page advertisement against torture in the Des Moines Register on Sunday, December 16.
We will share our thoughts and suggestions on our work with you as we go through 2008, and we are eager to hear your good ideas.
NRCAT cannot do this work without support from people like you. As the year draws to a close and we approach our second anniversary, we ask that you please consider a financial gift to this vital effort of the religious community. You can contribute a tax deductible contribution to NRCAT online at https://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/2162/t/3805/shop/custom.jsp?donate_page_KEY=2604 or by sending a check directly to the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, 316 F St. NE, Suite 200, Washington, DC 20002.

We can dream of a world without torture, but we must work to make that dream a reality. Thank you for your consideration, and we wish you a warm and peaceful holiday.
Sincerely,
Linda Gustitus, President
Richard Killmer, Executive Director
Questions? Please email campaign@nrcat.org
National Religious Campaign Against Torture: www.tortureisamoralissue.org - New Web Address

Friday, December 7, 2007

Remember your local peace partners!

Remember your local peace partners


We’ve noticed that people are deciding what good causes they want
their money to go to as we come to the end of the year. We just want to
remind you that your local peace group is also a 501c3 tax-exempt
organization, and would appreciate your thoughtful consideration.

Here are just a few of the things that your contributions helped Omni
Center accomplish during 2007.

Black Tuesday Vigil, January 07, when the 3000th American soldier was killed
Hold an elegant Peace Gardens Tour
Sponsor Free Speech TV (FSTV) on CAT
Expand the Critical Thinking Awards Program for high school teachers
Set up an Earth Scouts kids club, ages 2-15
Send delegates to Arkansas Citizens First Congress
Help create the Arkansas Governors Commission on Global Warming
Establish the new and improved Carbon Caps Task Force for environmental issues
Join United for Peace and Justice as a member group
Table at the Fayetteville Farmers Market all summer – great fun!
Hold the annual Peace & Justice Heroes Awards Banquet
Do great music, and the Global Warming Maze, at Springfest
Print new Manuals for Members and Omni Membership Cards
Commemorate the annual Hiroshima Nagasaki day
Send Omni folks to some great and informative conferences to network
Support students and faculty at NWACC in creating an Omni student group
Continue to support our great students at Omni UA
Send reps to our regional state peace conference
Apply for a high power nonprofit radio station license (this was a biggie)

That’s not all. It doesn’t even count the forums, roundtables and speakers… let alone the marches and demonstrations that you’ve been part of.

If it sounds like it’s a lot of work creating a culture of peace, you’re right. Omni people are on the move. But it’s worth every minute. It means a better future for us, and all our children. You can help keep these great programs and activities going right where we live. You can help by becoming a paying Omni member. You can also donate by sending your check to Omni Center, 902 W. Maple, Fayetteville 72701, or donate online at our website, www.omnicenter.org. If you have any questions, please contact co-presidents Melanie Dietzel, 479-442-8600, melaniedietzel@cox.net; or Gladys at 479-973-9049, gladystiffany@yahoo.com . If you’d like to know more, check out these and other fun projects on the Omni website.

These are things you really want to go on in your name. Your contributions will be appreciated.

Thanks for everything you already do, Omni Folks,
Melanie and Gladys for Omni Center

Sunday, December 2, 2007

WAR with IRAN ???

WAR WITH IRAN?‏
From: Omnicenter Communications (omninews@listserv.uark.edu) on behalf of Dick Bennett (jbennet@uark.edu)
Sent: Sun 12/02/07 6:08 PM
OMNI NEWSLETTER, 6th SPECIAL NO. ON IRAN
DECEMBER 2, 2007. BUILDING A CULTURE OF PEACE BY PREVENTING WARS (No. 1 on Iran appeared Dec. 23, 2006; No. 2 March 15, 2007; No. 3 April 3, 2007; No. 4, Sept. 3, 2007; No. 5, October 1, 2007.)
Ed. Dick Bennett
Pictures of the PEOPLE of Iran
http://www.lucasgray.com/video/peacetrain.html
NOT ONLY PREEMPTIVE ATTACKS BUT THREATS OF ATTACK VIOLATE TREATIES, THE LAW OF OUR LAND
UN CHARTER (a Treaty initiated by US and signed into US law)
Article 2(4): All members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.
TAKE ACTION
Click here to urge your Senators to support S. Res. 356 to stop President Bush from using military action against Iran without congressional approval.
ATTACK IMMINENT?
Bush-Cheney has also written a new directive for the destabilization of Iran, which will be fully supported by the Democrats. An attack on Iran, delayed from the original spring date, is simply being pushed to the summer or fall of this year, when the destabilization program “bears fruit”. (from Sophia). http://aftermathnews.wordpress.com/2007/06/02/iraq-war-funding-bill-fiasco-masks-collusion-between-bush-and-democrats/
Russia Evacuates Entire Bushehr Staff: Iranian news outlet claims nuclear experts packed their bags Friday, increasing speculation of imminent U.S., Israeli attack
http://www.rense.com/general78/rep.htm
Shifting Targets: The Administration’s plan for Iran
http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/10/08/071008fa_fact_hersh
US Weighs Strikes Against Iran As Iraq Fears New Conflict
http://www.spacewar.com/reports/US_Weighs_Strikes_Against_Iran_As_Iraq_Fears_New_Conflict_999.html (from Edrene)
PROMOTING WAR
IRAN -- 'BOMB IRAN' PODHORETZ: The current issue of Commentary magazine -- "widely regarded as the leading outlet for neoconservative writing" -- features a controversial cover story by Norman Podhoretz titled "The Case For Bombing Iran." Podhoretz's article appeals to President Bush, "a man who knows evil when he sees it" and who has been "battered more mercilessly and with less justification than any other in living memory," to carry out military strikes on Iran's nuclear facilities. U.S. diplomats are now pointing to the essay to pressure foreign diplomats to increase pressure on Iran. In a new interview, Podhoretz was asked to comment on the possible fallout of the military strikes he advocates. "Well, if we were to bomb the Iranians as I hope and pray we will," Podhoretz says, "we'll unleash a wave of anti-Americanism all over the world that will make the anti-Americanism we've experienced so far look like a lovefest." Podhoretz qualified his statement about anti-Americanism, saying it was only a "worst case scenario." It's "entirely possible," he claimed, that "many countries, particularly in the Middle East" would "at least secretly applaud us." But even global anti-Americanism is worth it, he argues, to slow Iran's nuclear program "for five or 10 years or more." In fact, Center for American Progress senior fellow Joseph Cirincione has argued that such a strike "would not, as is often said, delay the Iranian program. It would almost certainly speed it up. That is what happened when the Israelis struck at the Iraq program in 1981." (From Center for American Progress Action Fund , “The Progress Report,” June 21, 2007)
WARMONGER REV. HAGEE URGING WAR AGAINST MUSLIMS
Here is the webpage for Moyers’ show about Christians United for Israel (CUFI)
http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/10052007/profile.html (Chris D) [Moyers gave a 2nd program 11-30 showing Hagee’s extreme fanaticism. D]
INCONSISTENCY OF US NUCLEAR POLICY IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Monbiot.com
Ban the Bomb - But Only in Iran
Posted: 20 Nov 2007 02:13 AM CST
When will Bush and Brown acknowledge that there is already a nuclear power in the Middle East?
PRESIDENTS OF COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY’S NATIONALISTIC DOUBLE STANDARD = EXHIBITS US IMPERIALISTIC HISTORY
{Z Magazine, November 2007
“More Nuggets from a Nut House:
Greeting the Shah, Musharraf, and Ahmandinejad”
Edward S. Herman
It is amusing to contrast the September 24, 2007 treatment of Iran President Mahmoud Ahmandinejad by Columbia University President Lee Bollinger with Bollinger’s September 16, 2005 treatment of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, and the treatment of the Shah of Iran back in 1955 by Columbia University President Grayson Kirk (and by the media). As we all know, after having invited Ahmandinejad to speak at Columbia, Bollinger proceeded to give the guest a nasty, pedantic and misinformed attack, calling him a “cruel dictator” with a “mind of evil.” But back in 2005, Bollinger welcomed Pakistan President Musharraf with a warm accolade, as “a leader of global importance …[whose] contribution to Pakistan’s economic turnaround and the international fight against terror remain remarkable - it is rare that we have a leader of his stature at campus.” (Columbia University has standing ovation for President," Press Release, General Pervez Musharraf, President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, September 16, 2005).
http://www.sipa.columbia.edu/institutes_centers/index.html
Back in February 1955, the Shah of Iran was a guest at Columbia receiving an honorary Doctor of Laws degree, and he, like Musharraf was greeted deferentially by Grayson Kirk, and gave a well-received speech featuring an accolade to the U.S. “policy of peace backed by strength.” The New York Times also noted that the Shah was “impressed by the desire of Americans for a secure and enduring peace.” (“Shah Praises U.S. For Peace Policy,” NYT, Feb. 5, 1955, p. 2). This was, of course, just a few months after the United States had overthrown the elected government of Guatemala via a proxy army and had installed a regime of permanent terror.
In the reality world, both Musharraf and the Shah of Iran fit comfortably the category of “cruel dictator,” whereas Ahmandinejad does not. Musharraf came to power in a coup and has ruled by decree ever since, in the interim carrying out quite a few massacres of his own people. The Shah was installed as ruler by the United States in a coup back in 1953 (only 18 months before his Doctor of Laws degree award—or reward—at Columbia University) and from the very beginning displayed his cruelty and intention to rule by dictatorial authority. Ahmandinejad won a contested election and has limited personal power.
The Shah’s torture chambers were famous, modernized with the help of his CIA and Israeli advisers, and probably topped anything the Iranian regime has engaged in since the Shah’s departure. The crucial difference between the winners of Columbia presidents’ accolades and denunciation is obviously that the one denounced is a declared U.S. enemy and target, whereas the good guys served U.S. interests. As in so many cases of leaders who serve, any little defects like torture or dictatorial rule somehow fail to get noticed by the Presidents of Columbia (or by the mainstream media), whereas the lesser defects of the leader of the target state arouses furious indignation as the Columbia President displays his deep concern for human rights and democracy.
It is a little awkward for Bollinger that since Musharraf’s 2005 visit to Columbia he has fallen out of complete favor and there is talk of ousting this “leader of stature” who has not shaped up adequately. But if Musharraf came to Columbia again, we can be sure that Bollinger would find the proper nuance for a leader who was of somewhat diminished stature but still a U.S. instrument.
The Shah was even encouraged to pursue nuclear energy, just as the target Iran of today is being threatened for trying to do what the Shah was allowed to do, by dictate of the ruler of the world. In short, the double standard is comprehensive and even funny in its crudity, but the United States and its propaganda system prevent large numbers from seeing this and laughing the responsible charlatans off the stage.

“Britain to back U.S. in attack on Iran: Bush, Brown discuss bombing
strategies” TIM SHIPMAN
THE TELEGRAPH WASHINGTON British defence officials have held talks with their Pentagon counterparts about how they could help out if America chooses to bomb Iran.
Washington sources say the U.S. has shelved plans for an all-out assault, drawn up to destroy the Iranian nuclear facilities and take out the Islamist regime.
The Telegraph has learned that President George W. Bush s White House national security council is discussing instead a plan to launch pinpoint attacks on bases operated by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Quds force, blamed for training Iraqi militants.
Pentagon officials have revealed that Bush won an understanding with British Premier Gordon Brown in July that Britain could support air strikes if they could be justified as a counterterrorist operation. [I cut off the article here—D.]

DAVID HOROWITZ AND WINGERS LAUNCH ISLAMOFACIST WEEK TO STIR FEAR AND BUILD SUPPORT FOR WAR ON IRAN
Aaron Hess reports:"ISLAMOFASCISM Awareness Week" is designed, according to FrontPage, to "challenge most of what students are taught about the so-called War on Terror both in the classroom and on the quad."
In reality, Horowitz and friends (including Ann Coulter) rely on standard right-wing myths and stereotypes--echoed by mainstream politicians and the media on a regular basis--to demonize Arabs and Muslims, and justify U.S. war atrocities in the Middle East, including a future attack on Iran, which is at the top of the Horowitz wish list. A featured speaker on Horowitz's right-wing road show is the self-described "religious expert" Robert Spencer, author of the book Religion of Peace? Why Christianity Is and Islam Isn't. Spencer's book argues that the Koran is responsible for violence committed by Muslims against Western targets-but that "there is no justification for violent acts committed by Christians, either in the Christian Scriptures or the teaching of various Christian churches."Really? What about the Crusades in the Middle Ages? The Spanish Inquisition? The genocide of Native Americans? The ongoing U.S. war on Iraq? All of these crimes were justified in their time by Christians-the Popes of the Catholic Church, Christopher Columbus, George W. Bush-who claimed to be doing "God's work." CHECK THIS SITE OUT FOR THE TONE TAKEN BY THE PATRIOT POLICE:Here is a report from The Real News Network featuring an excellent reporter Pepe Escobar on the campaign against Iran


PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES ON IRAN
New Resource Outlining Presidential Candidate Positions on Iran Posted: 19 Nov 2007 02:50 PM CST
The New York Times has compiled the positions of all the presidential candidates on Iran in an easily accessible format. And speaking of candidates positions on Iran, here is an excellent article by John Isaacs on the subject..
Obama Introduces Iran Measure In Senate
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/11/02/4972/
SENATOR CLINTON TWISTS AND TURNS
Here is an interesting Iran war development. After Clinton voted for the Lieberman amendment (Iranian troops are terrorists) that escalated potential war with Iran, she cosponsored Jim Webb’s amendment that would require the president to first seek congressional approval and funding before attacking Iran. I think the outcome of this amendment will speak volumes about where this whole thing is going and where we should go. (from Abel)
http://news.yahoo.com/s/thenation/20071004/cm_thenation/1239880

WATCH THIS FILM ABOUT CLINTON AND IRAN
http://youtube.com/watch?v=0icVblxh2dI
Tom Najemy ACT! Certified Consultant 413-525-3115
tom@squad16.com www.squad16.com
WEAPONS INDUSTRY BIG SUPPORTER OF CLINTON
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/10/19/4672/
One of our responsibilities as citizens is to try to develop better candidates through information and argument. Contact the candidates.
AGAINST ATTACKING IRAN
CONSEQUENCES OF ATTACK: US TOTALITARIANISM WILL DEEPEN AND HARDEN
Senator Mark Pryor: (202) 224-2353
NAOMI WOLF: US FASCIST DRIFT
“In April, 2007 I was pleasantly surprised to find Naomi Wolf's article, "Fascist America, In 10 Easy Steps”….I had been looking for a list--or more specifically, an encyclopedia of the losses of civil liberties in the United States that might clarify for my history students the extent to which America has become a fascist empire. Wolf's "10 Easy Steps" was perfect, but her just-published book, The End Of America: Letter Of Warning To A Young Patriot, from which the 10 easy steps was compiled, offers an even fuller picture... of how our civil liberties have been hijacked in the past decade. It is the most poignant, powerful, genuinely patriotic piece of literature I have encountered since Thomas Paine's Common Sense. “ "Fascist America, In 10 Easy Steps" article at http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,2064157,00.html
[PANEL ON WOLF’S BOOK occurred 11-27 with a packed auditorium and energized panel and audience.]

“A Coup Has Occurred” By Daniel Ellsberg
September 26, 2007 (Text of a speech delivered
September 20, 2007)
http://www.consortiumnews.com/2007/092607a.html
Editor's Note: Daniel Ellsberg, the former Defense
Department analyst who leaked the secret Pentagon
Papers history of the Vietnam War, offered insights
into the looming war with Iran and the loss of liberty
in the United States at an American University
symposium on Sept. 20.
Below is an edited transcript of Ellsberg's remarkable
speech:
I think nothing has higher priority than averting an
attack on Iran, which I think will be accompanied by a
further change in our way of governing here that in
effect will convert us into what I would call a police
state.
If there's another 9/11 under this regime ... it means
that they switch on full extent all the apparatus of a
police state that has been patiently constructed,
largely secretly at first but eventually leaked out and
known and accepted by the Democratic people in
Congress, by the Republicans and so forth….
And I would say after the Iranian retaliation to an
American attack on Iran, you will then see an increased
attack on Iran -- an escalation -- which will be also
accompanied by a total suppression of dissent in this
country, including detention camps.
It's a little hard for me to distinguish the two
contingencies; they could come together. Another 9/11
or an Iranian attack in which Iran's reaction against
Israel, against our shipping, against our troops in
Iraq above all, possibly in this country, will justify
the full panoply of measures that have been prepared
now, legitimized, and to some extent written into law.
...

This is an unusual gang, even for Republicans. [But] I
think that the successors to this regime are not likely
to roll back the assault on the Constitution. They will
take advantage of it, they will exploit it….. >
The Next Coup
Let me simplify this and not just to be rhetorical: A
coup has occurred….. It's not just a question that a coup lies ahead with the next 9/11. That's the next coup, that completes the first.
The last five years have seen a steady assault on every
fundamental of our Constitution, ... what the rest of
the world looked at for the last 200 years as a model
and experiment to the rest of the world -- in checks
and balances, limited government, Bill of Rights,
individual rights protected from majority infringement
by the Congress, an independent judiciary, the
possibility of impeachment.
There have been violations of these principles by many
presidents before. Most of the specific things that
Bush has done in the way of illegal surveillance and
other matters were done under my boss Lyndon Johnson in
the Vietnam War: the use of CIA, FBI, NSA against
Americans.

I could go through a list going back before this
century to Lincoln's suspension of habeas corpus in the
Civil War, and before that the Alien and Sedition Acts
in the 18th century. I think that none of those
presidents were in fact what I would call quite
precisely the current administration: domestic enemies
of the Constitution….
It is increasingly clear with each new book and each
new leak that comes out, that Richard Cheney and his
now chief of staff David Addington have had precisely
that in mind [to change our form of government] since at least the early 70s. [This is only the beginning of a major essay—D.]
---------------
Daniel Ellsberg is author of Secrets: A Memoir of
Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers.
http://www.homestead.com/homefront/NethPhilAttack.html>
http://rizalarchive.blogspot.com>
http://www.countercurrents.org/juan150507.htm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRg2Z_uqDR4

PROTESTING AGAINST ATTACK ON IRAN

OMNI’S PROTESTS DURING 2007

~Five special newsletters, beginning December 23, 2006.

~Attention to Iran ongoing in OMNI’s bibliographies of books on peace, justice, and ecology (24 to date).

~Forum in the fall of 2007 to draw attention to the culture and humanity of the people of Iran:

Prof. Joel Gordon, history of Persia and Iran, Sept. 21

~Iranian film publicized, Siavash (plot includes a musician) (see: www.IRmovies.com)

~Letters to newspapers by Dick Bennett and Abel Tomlinson.

~Video Underground film, Why We Fight, Oct. 28

~Ann Wright’s talk in Bentonville vs. Bush admin. invasions, Oct. 29

~Ann Wright’s talk at UA on impeaching Bush, Oct. 30

~Supported "NO WAR ON IRAN" National Awareness Week.

~ Working with National Iranian American Council (NIAC)

~ Publicized FSTV film on Iran (Nov. 4).



LETTER BY CORALIE to ADG

Posted on Friday, November 30, 2007

Our leaders keep threatening to attack Iran. Here are some possible (or likely ) consequences if they do.

Sen. Chuck Hagel predicts a significant retaliation by Iran in many forms, including terrorism, reaching even the U. S. A top Iranian military commander announced that Iran is ready to retaliate within minutes of an attack with 11, 000 missiles. The U. S. has more than 300, 000 troops and support personnel at risk in the region. The Fifth Fleet could be destroyed by Iran's Silkworm missiles. Half of our Navy's warships are within striking distance; many are sitting ducks in the shallow Persian Gulf.

The bombing could set off a larger conflagration in the Middle East and involve Israel, which already has nuclear weapons. Any use of nuclear weapons, and even the bombing of nuclear facilities, would create radioactivity that threatens not only the region (and our own troops ) but areas beyond. Iran might block the Strait of Hormuz through which up to a quarter of the world's oil passes, causing oil prices to zoom and a global depression. China, Russia and Japan get most of their oil from the Middle East. China could stop buying U. S. bonds or start to sell their huge supply of U. S. dollars, causing the U. S. economy to collapse. If there was anti-Americanism before, it would be greatly increased by this unilateral action. Even our British allies think it is a crazy idea. The Iranian nuclear threat is a long-term, potential danger, not an immediate threat. Why are we set on this self-destructive course ? CORALIE KOONCE / Fayetteville

Mohamed El Baradei says war drums beating for Iran like they did in the run up to the Iraq war (Washington Times) Article published Sep 8, 2007
“Nuke watchdog defends Iran deal “
http://www.washingtontimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070908/FOREIGN/109080042/1001
September 8, 2007
By David R. Sands - The United Nations' top nuclear cop yesterday slammed critics of a new inspection deal with Iran as "back-seat drivers" trying to justify a war with Tehran in the same way they cleared a path for the 2003 invasion of Iraq. ….

Iran Nuclear Watch

Amazing Slides of Iran

Posted: 19 Nov 2007 04:29 PM CST
With all of the spin in the mainstream media about Iran, it can become so easy to buy into the demonization of the entire country. A colleague forwarded me a link to Jadid Online. It has some amazing slide shows of life in Iran and it covers a wide range of issues from the Iranian perspective. My favorite so far is "The Heart and Soul of Isfahan." These slide shows really put a human face on what we, by and large, do not see here in the mainstream media - a complex and nuanced picture of a 7,000-year civilization.
Will Sanctions on Iran Work?

Posted: 19 Nov 2007 12:01 PM CST

Professor emeritus of government and foreign affairs at the University of Virginia Ruhi Ramazani published a new opinion editorial yesterday entitled "Sanctions on Iran: Will They Work?" It is one of the few articles in the media that addresses why, in fact, U.S. unilateral sanctions are likely to fail.

The Bush administration is couching unilateral sanctions as part of the its diplomatic efforts. Because of the intensified rhetoric against Iran emanating from the administration, sanctions are more palatable to Congress and the public when they are faced with the false choice of war or capitulation. To make matters more complicated, unfortunately, many foreign policy heavy weights are lining up behind the sanctions option because they do not understand Iranian behavior and they believe this is somehow the best approach. Professor Ramazani argues that while much of U.S. policy has focused on economic considerations, it has failed to take into account the psychological and political factors inside Iran, factors that are far more important.

Ramazani writes: "Historically, Iranian national sentiment soars in the face of foreign pressure. Like the leaders of the past, the current regime can benefit internally from resisting coercion by foreign powers such as the United States." He then succinctly articulates the history of interventions in Iran's political structure from the 19th century to present that have contributed to the "profound Iranian cultural, psychological and political realities" of today that make "America's newly expanded unilateral sanctions likely to fail, as have all previous sanctions since the United States broke diplomatic relations with Iran in 1980."
Ramazani concludes:
"Diplomacy, rather than pressure or military action, remains the most realistic option. American and Iranian ambassadors in Baghdad will soon renew discussions on Iraqi security. Yet to resolve the nuclear standoff between the US and Iran, unconditional and direct negotiations at higher levels are essential to avoid a military collision."
[Special thanks to Scott Harrop for sending along the article.]

SENATOR BLANCHE LINCOLN (202) 224-4843

TAKE ACTION: PETITIONS
No War in Iran Petition
No War in Iran Petition, hosted at PetitionOnline.com.
www.petitiononline.com/NWinIran/ - 7k - Cached - Similar pages
Peace Action
Resistance to a Bush planned military strike on Iran is growing in Congress, but it needs your help! Sign the petition to Congress below - No War with Iran! ...
www.peace-action.org/Iranpetition.html - 31k - Cached - Similar pages
StopWarOnIran.org -- Stop the War on Iran Before it Starts!
of people who are taking a stand against another illegal war. — Sign the Online Petition Tell Bush and Congress: No War against Iran! Resources: ...
www.stopwaroniran.org/ - 16k - Cached - Similar pages
ALTERNATIVES TO VIOLENCE

Stopping War On Iran: Talking Points by Geov Parrish
http://eatthestate.org/12-02/StoppingWarOn.htm

In recent weeks, as hostile Bush administration rhetoric toward Iran has ramped up, numerous press reports (particularly from the British press) have suggested that Bush has decided to launch a massive military strike against Iran.

Such a strike would have disastrous consequences, from the loss of life, to a probable regional war throughout the Middle East, to the economic impact of the cost and the threat to oil supplies, to the impact on an already-reeling American military itself. It's an eerie replay of the run-up to the Iraq war--full of lies and distortions and insincere diplomatic posturing--only with bigger stakes. But there are two crucial differences: the American public has seen what has happened with Iraq (and how we were lied to), and Congress is no longer controlled by Republican sycophants.

True, there are plenty of Democratic sycophants as well. But Congress is still our best hope of preventing this catastrophe. And it will only act if the public is informed and outraged.

To this end, here are some talking points on why a military strike against Iran is such a bad idea. Use them in communications with Congressional offices, in letters to the editor and talk shows, in conversations with your friends, relatives, neighbors, co-workers. Do what you can to stop what would be the crowning blow to our country from the most criminal administration in history.

1. THE FALSE RATIONALES FOR ATTACK: The Bush administration has three major arguments for war with Iran: Its nuclear program, alleged support for Iraqi insurgents, and its fundamentalism and support of allied terrorist groups.

* Iran is five to ten years away from having usable nuclear weapons.

* Iran is cooperating with the IAEA (the U.N.'s nuclear materials control agency). Its nuclear program is so far completely legal.

* The three countries known to have nuclear weapons in defiance of international law--Israel, India, and Pakistan--are all now receiving military aid from the US.

* The US has been claiming that Iran is arming Iraqi insurgents, but the majority of attacks against US forces are from Sunni militias that are also opposed to Shiite Iran.

* There is an enormous black market in weapons in Iraq, mostly American ones. There has been no evidence the Iranian government is connected to the presence or use of Iranian weapons in Iraq.

* The Iraqi militia most closely aligned with Iran is sponsored by the largest faction in Prime Minister al-Maliki's Iraqi government.

* Any number of countries sponsor or "harbor" terror groups, including almost every US ally in the Middle East. We don't attack them to solve the problem.

* US hawkishness has undermined Iranian reform efforts and strengthened the hardliners.

* Iran has never attacked the United States (or any other country), and poses no threat to it.

* How can we trust any intelligence, prediction, or analysis from this administration after Iraq?

2. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC CONSIDERATIONS: An attack against Iran would be unpopular, immoral, illegal, and would have enormous ramifications within and beyond the Middle East.

* The doctrine of "preemptive attack" against a country that has not attacked the US and is not in imminent danger of doing so is by definition illegal under international law, as well as deeply immoral.

* Congress has never authorized war with Iran; an attack on Bush's sole authority would be unconstitutional. Even if Congress did authorize it, such a war would be an illegal war of aggression under international law.

* The war with Iraq is already widely opposed by the American public. An attack on Iran would also be broadly unpopular in the US and throughout the world.

* As with Iraq, most of the casualties from an attack on Iran and the resulting regional war would be civilian. The loss of life would likely be massive.

* Attacking Iran without provocation would further damage US moral, political, and economic standing around the world.

* An attack on Iran and the resulting war would be staggeringly expensive.

* If Iran's chief export were salt, we wouldn't be having this conversation.

* The threat to the Middle East's oil supply could make oil and gas much more expensive throughout the world, triggering a global economic crisis.

3. MILITARY AND NATIONAL SECURITY CONSIDERATIONS: An attack against Iran is likely to be militarily disastrous.

* Iran is a much larger and more populous country than Iraq, with a stronger economy and a large military. Iran could and would retaliate, and the Iranian public would likely rally around its government. Once begun, war could end only with US retreat or the nuclear annihilation of Iran.

* The possible use of nuclear weapons against Iran would lead to a global nuclear arms race that would be exponentially worse for long-term US national security.

* The US military is already exhausted and stretched thin, and cannot sustain an additional war against Iran. An attack and the inevitable war that would follow would leave it unable to respond to any emerging threats elsewhere in the world.

* The only way the US military can muster the manpower needed to fight the war that would result from an attack on Iran is through resumption of a draft.

* Iran can retaliate in numerous ways: directly against US planes, directly or through sympathetic Iraqi militias against US forces in Iraq; against US tankers and warships in the Persian Gulf or by blocking oil traffic in the Strait of Hormuz; by launching strikes against Saudi or Gulf State oil facilities or Israel; or through terror attacks by allied groups such as Hezbollah.

* Attacking Iran would put US soldiers in Iraq in even greater danger, and destroy any remaining credibility with the Iraqi people or its leaders.

* Iran and Syria have a mutual defense pact. War with one means war with both. An attack on Iran almost certainly would lead to a wider conflagration.

* Attacking Iran would enflame and embolden anti-American Islamism throughout the Islamic world. The results could well additionally imperil US-allied governments in Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, and nuclear-equipped Pakistan. Islamist control of Pakistan is a much more imminent threat to US security than Iran's fledgling nuclear program.

* As with Iraq, an attack on Iran would be a boon to recruiting and funding efforts by Islamic terrorist groups.

4. ALTERNATIVES TO AN ATTACK: There are better ways to deal with US concerns regarding Iran.

* Iran has repeatedly stated its willingness to engage in direct talks with the United States. The Bush administration has consistently rejected direct diplomacy and undermined European attempts at diplomacy.

* The Bush administration is treating war as a first, rather than a last, resort.

* War is in and of itself immoral, and a flawed way to resolve conflict.

* Negotiation, diplomacy, and goodwill work.



JIMMIE CARTER LIVE ON IRAN VS GIULIANI

Carter thinks and talks.



SENATOR PRYOR (202) 224-2353



APPEAL TO PSYCHOLOGISTS

Dear Friends & Colleagues:

Floyd Rudmin is one of PsySR's most distinguished scholarly members. In this article, he captures the insanity of constant escalation of rhetoric and action and the cycle this breeds for war and destruction. We can only ask why psychologists skilled in conflict resolution and peace strategies have not been part of the US administration's consultants and advisers, and why virtually all known advisers have advocated war, bombing, & escalation (e.g, Bernard Lewis). Is it time for a Department of Peace? Would anyone listen to it? Are any national presidential candidates calling for it? Hmmmm! The plot thickens . . . and the death and destruction continues.



“Preparing for National Suicide:

What ‘All Options are on the Table’ Really Means By FLOYD RUDMIN http://www.counterpunch.org/rudmin10302007.html COUNTERPUNCH -OCTOBER 31,2007

"Conscious or not conscious of your own bad intentions, you suspect theirs to be still worse. Their notion of your intentions is the same. Measures of mere self-defense are naturally taken for acts of aggression. The same causes produce, on both sides, the same effects; each makes haste to begin for fear of being forestalled. In this state of things, if on either side there happen to be a Minister [of War], or a would-be Minister, who has a fancy for war, the stroke is struck, and the tinder catches fire." Jeremy Bentham, 1789, "Plan for an Universal and Perpetual Peace."

For more than a year, the USA has been openly threatening to bomb Iran. Some scenarios see the use of nuclear bombs. "All options are on the table" says Bush, Cheney, Rice, and most of the candidates in the 2008 Presidential race.

The reason? They say they feel threatened by Iran's pursuit of nuclear power technology, although they formally granted Iran that right when they ratified the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1968. The IAEA has found no evidence of a nuclear weapons program. They say they feel threatened by Iran's support of the Shia militia, especially those in Iraq and Lebanon. Iran has traditionally played the role of defending Shia communities, even in the Ottoman era. They say they feel threatened by Iran's opposition to Israel's expansion and Israel's oppression of Palestinians, which is against international law and many UN resolutions. The say they feel threatened by Iran's energy exports and its ability to influence world prices. In general, they feel threatened by an independent nation in an oil-rich region they wish to dominate. Therefore, they threaten to bomb Iran. "All options are on the table."



The UN Charter, Article 2, section 4 states that



"All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations."

America is a founding member of the UN and has thus made that provision a part of its own national law. According to the US Constitution, treaties constitute the highest law of the land. It is thus illegal under US law to threaten to bomb Iran. Nevertheless, they threaten war. They move excessive numbers of warships into seas surrounding Iran. They cultivate client states, build bases and deploy troops on all sides of Iran.

One consequence of these threats is that Iran must prepare to defend itself. On Oct. 20, a top Iranian military commander announced that Iran is ready to retaliate with 11,000 missiles in the first few minutes after an American surprise attack. The missiles are aimed at the military bases, ships at sea, and economic assets of the threatening nations. To launch that many missiles AFTER a shock-and-awe surprise attack means that Iran must have distributed the ability to launch missiles. There is not one launch button and one commanding finger on the button.

There are many buttons and many different fingers on them. War is now on a hair trigger, and the risk of accidental war is now very, very, very high. War might be started by an Iranian religious fundamentalist eager to go to heaven, or patriot eager to defend Iran, or a traitor eager to destroy Iran, or someone depressed or bored or simply misreading a radar screen and thinking a flock of birds are an incoming attack.

The USA has over 300,000 military and support personnel in the region around Iran, all of them now the target of 11,000 missiles on hair-trigger. That is what repeated threats of war have achieved.

The epilogue by Jeremy Bentham, written more than 200 years ago, aptly describes what is happening now. War seems inevitable. With war will come thousands of deaths, maybe millions, and whole economies will collapse, the first being that of the USA since it is most dependent on imported oil.

The epilogue quote comes from Bentham's book, "Plan for an Universal and Perpetual Peace." He coined the concept of "international law" and first conceived of the idea of a united nations. In the 18th century, those were merely ideas. Now, in the 21st century, they are reality. We have international law and a United Nations. But the USA and other belligerent nations have decided to act contrary to international law and in violation of the United Nations, with the consequence that their military forces and economies are now in jeopardy.

Among all of the options on the table, the most likely are self-destruction and national suicide.

Floyd Rudmin is Professor of Social & Community Psychology at the University of Tromsø. He can be reached at frudmin@psyk.uit.no



Anthony J. Marsella, Ph.D.

President, Psychologists for Social Responsibility 2007-2008. www.psysr.org PsySR is an independent organization of psychologists and others committed to promoting peace and social justice

Show, by your actions, that you choose peace over war, freedom over oppression, voice over silence, service over self-interest, honor over advantage, cooperation over competition, action over passivity, diversity over uniformity, and justice over all.



FOR IRAN A HOPEFUL PROSPECT IN CONGRESS: WAR POWERS ACT CHALLENGED

And reported from an unexpected source: George Will in TMN (11-4-07), "Congress AWOL on Powers." Will argues that our system of checks and balances is broken as result of the collapse of Congress, but he reports some good news. Rep. Walter Jones (R, NC) and Rep. Ron Paul have put forward the Constitutional War Powers Resolution to correct the War Powers Resolution passed in 1973. Jones' measure prohibits presidents from initiating military actions except when US attacked. The Res. derives from the War Powers Initiative of the Constitution Project of 2005 which recommended Congress stop the use of force by presidents by cutting off funding. That check is augmented by the Anti-Deficiency Act, which prohibits any expenditure by the Pres. not approp. by Congress. Will's column is packed with history we need to know. I urge you all to read it.

War Powers Clause - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In 1973, Congress passed the War Powers Resolution, which requires the president to ... Ryan C. The Clinton Wars: Congress, the Constitution and War Powers. ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_Powers_Clause - 32k - Cached - Similar pages
[ More results from en.wikipedia.org ]

The War Powers Resolution: After Thirty Years

From its inception, the War Powers Resolution was controversial because it operated on the national war powers, powers divided by the Constitution in no ...
www.fas.org/man/crs/RL32267.html - 278k - Cached - Similar pages

War Powers Resolution: Presidential Compliance

The purpose of the War Powers Resolution (P.L. 93-148, ... Under the Constitution, war powers are divided. Congress has the power to declare war and raise ...
www.fas.org/man/crs/IB81050.html - 57k - Cached - Similar pages
[ More results from www.fas.org ]

Constitution Project: War Powers Initiative

The Constitution provides for war powers to be divided between the ... The 1973 congressional War Powers Resolution was intended to clarify matters and ...
www.constitutionproject.org/warpowers/index.cfm?categoryId=1 - 20k - Cached - Similar pages

Ron Paul co-sponsoring Constitutional War Powers Resolution | KCRG ...

He has publicly stated his dislike of the 1973 War Powers Resolution, believing it to be in conflict with the Consitiution. While the Constitution provides ...
www.kcrg.com/explorepolitics/?feed=bim&id=10908046 - 43k - Cached - Similar pages

War Powers Act - Congresspedia

The problem of how a constitutional democracy reacts to great crises, however, ... Kevin J. Hale (Colonel), The War Powers Resolution: Intent, Implication, ...
www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=War_Powers_Act - 30k - Cached - Similar pages



SENATOR PRYOR (202) 224-2353



BOOKS ON IRAN

From Prof. Joel Gordon, also in OMNI’s website. http://omnicenter.org/

Books to Read on Iran



A. General History/Society



Gene Garthwaite, The Persians (Blackwell 2005). A good general survey from antiquity to the present.



Nikki R Keddie, Modern Iran: Roots and Results of Revolution (Yale U Press 2003). The best accessible, yet sophisticated survey of modern Iran.



B. US-Iran Relations



James A Bill, The Eagle and the Lion: The Tragedy of American-Iranian Relations (Yale U Press 1989). Still the best account of how/why the US “lost” Iran.



William O Beeman, The ‘Great Satan’ vs ‘Mad Mullahs’: How the United States and Iran Demonize Each Other (Praeger 2006). Political rhetoric vs. reality on both sides.



C. Religion and Politics



Roy P Mottahedeh, The Mantle of the Prophet: Religion and Politics in Iran (Oneworld 2000). Highly readable intellectual biography of a quasi-fictional ayatollah against a panorama of 20th Century political/cultural upheavals.



Asef Bayat, Making Islam Democratic: Social Movements and the Post-Islamist Turn (Stanford U Press 2007). A comparative study of Iran/Egypt as alternate routes to creating new polities, since the 1970s.



Kamran Aghaie, The Martyrs of Kerbala: Shi`i Symbols and Rituals in Modern Iran (U Washington Press, 2004). Analysis of the power/meaning of Shi`i religious expression in Iranian culture/history.



D. Literature/Arts/Culture/Gender



Fatemeh Keshavarz, Jasmine and Stars: Reading More than Lolita in Tehran (UNC Press 2007). Tackling Western presumptions regarding gender and politics in Iran, Keshavarz celebrates Iranian literary culture and intellectual vibrancy.



Shiva Balaghi and Lynn Gumpert (eds.), Picturing Iran: Art, Society, and Revolution (IB Taurus 2003). Amply illustrated essays examine visual culture and politics in Iran in the 1960s and 70s.



Marjane Satrapi, Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood; Persepolis; The Story of a Return (Pantheon 2004/2005). The “graphic” story of a young girl caught up in the turmoil of the Iranian revolution and the Iran-Iraq War. In Embroideries (Pantheon 2006) a group of Iranian women tell bittersweet, bawdy stories of sex and sisterhood.



More (Dick):

--Dabashi, Hamid. Iran: A People Interrrupted. New Press, 2007. Rev. Win Magazine (WRL)(Fall 2007). Encyclopedic survey of Persian and Iranian history over the last 2 centuries: poets, writers, filmmakers, artists, architects, cleric, et al. Focuses on struggle between 2 types of modernity, one colonial/Western and the other anticolonial/indigenous. Ends with this admonition to the U.S.: “the only way that [the U.S.] can help promote democracy in Iran or anywhere else in the world is by first and foremost restoring and safeguarding it in their own country.”



A brief protest by Chris Heddges, author of American Fascists: The Bush admin. has usurped the Constitution and “is guilty of what the Nuremberg tribunal defined as a criminal war of aggression.” The Nation (Dec. 10, 2007).





CONTACT YOUR CONGRESSIONAL REPRESENTATIVES

Meredith Oakley in ADG (8-26-07) writes encouragingly of citizen engagement, “Government: What We Make It.” She quotes Ben Franklin among others on our system of government: Asked what kind of government we had, he replied: “A republic, if you can keep it.” We, the People!



--Senator Blanche Lincoln: Web Site (they have contact links): www.lincoln.senate.gov; http://www.lincoln.senate.gov/index.cfm; http://www.lincoln.senate.gov/webform.html

Washington Office: 355 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, D.C. 20510-0404

Phone: (202) 224-4843 Fax: (202) 228-1371.

Fayetteville office: 251-1380. Lincoln’s staff is better informed than Boozman’s (see below), but obviously (her vote to join Bush in appropriating $95 billion more to keep the occupation going and her vote to further extend warrantless phone taps)) they need a lot of education. Call her and her staff.

Getting to her office:

Northwestern Regional Office
4 South College Avenue, Suite 205, Google Maps puts the marker 308 feet south of Meadow Street.
Fayetteville, AR 72701
(479) 251-1224; FAX (479) 251-1410






--Senator Mark Pryor: Web Site (see contact link): www.pryor.senate.gov ; http://pryor.senate.gov/contact/ Pryor has no office in NWA, so call or write him and his staff in DC: Washington Office: 217 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C. 20510-0403. Phone: (202) 224-2353 Fax: (202) 228-0908

Main District Office: 500 Pres. Clinton Ave., Suite 401, Little Rock, AR 72201.

Phone: (501) 324-6336 Fax: (501) 324-5320.



Boozman’s Staff:

Matt Sagely, Chief of Staff. 202-225-4301; matt.sagely@mail.house.gov

1519 Longworth Building

Washington, DC 20515

http://boozman.house.gov



Stacey McClure, Deputy Chief of Staff

Puppy Creek Place

213 W. Monroe, Suite K

Lowell, AR 72745

479.725.0400

Fax: 479.725.0408

STACEY.McCLURE@MAIL.HOUSE.GOV


Dick Bennett
jbennet@uark.edu
(479) 442-4600
2582 Jimmie Ave.
Fayetteville, AR 72703

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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Will Homegrown Terrorrism Prevention Act intimidate activists?

The Violent Radicalization Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007
By Matt Renner
t r u t h o u t | Report

Thursday 29 November 2007

A month ago, the House of Representatives passed legislation that targets Americans with radical ideologies for research. The bill has received little media attention and has almost unanimous support in the House. However, civil liberties groups see the bill as a threat to the constitutionally protected freedoms of expression, privacy and protest.

HR 1955, "The Violent Radicalization Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007", apparently intended to assess "homegrown" terrorism threats and causes is on a fast-track through Congress. Proponents claim the bill would centralize information about the formation of domestic terrorists and would not impinge on constitutional rights.

On October 23, the bill passed the House of Representatives by a 404-6 margin with 23 members not voting. If passed in the Senate and signed into law by George W. Bush, the act would establish a ten-member National Commission on the Prevention of Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism, to study and propose legislation to address the threat of possible "radicalization" of people legally residing in the US.

Despite being written by a Democrat, the current version of the act would probably set up a Commission dominated by Republicans. By allowing Bush and Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff to each appoint one member of the Commission, and splitting the appointment of the other eight positions equally between Congressional Democrats and Republicans, the Commission would consist of six Republican appointees and four Democrat ones.

The Commission would be tasked with collecting information on domestically spawned terrorism from a variety of sources, including foreign governments and previous domestic studies. The Commission would then report to Congress and recommend policy changes to address the threat. There is no opposition to this consolidation or research. However, the Commission would be given broad authority to hold hearings and collect evidence, powers that raise red flags for civil liberties groups.

Civil liberties activists have criticized the bill, some comparing the Commission it would establish to the McCarthy Commission that investigated Americans for possible associations with Communist groups, casting suspicion on law-abiding citizens and ruining their reputations. The Commission would be empowered to "hold hearings and sit and act at such times and places, take such testimony, receive such evidence, and administer such oaths as the Commission considers advisable to carry out its duties."

Odette Wilkens, the executive director of the Equal Justice Alliance, a constitutional watchdog group, compared the legislation to the McCarthy Commission and to the FBI's Counter Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO), which infiltrated, undermined and spied on civil rights and antiwar groups during the 1950s and 60s.

"The commission would have very broad powers. It could investigate anyone. It would create a public perception that whoever is being investigated by the Commission must be involved in subversive or illegal activities. It would give the appearance that whoever they are investigating is potentially a traitor or disloyal or a terrorist, even if all they were doing was advocating lawful views," Wilkens said.

In a speech on the floor of the House before the vote, Congresswoman Jane Harman (D-California), the chair of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Intelligence and author of the bill said, "Free speech, espousing even very radical beliefs, is protected by our Constitution - but violent behavior is not. Our plan must be to intervene before a person crosses that line separating radical views from violent behavior, to understand the forces at work on the individual and the community, to create an environment that discourages disillusionment and alienation, that instills in young people a sense of belonging and faith in the future."

In the same speech, Harman explained why "homegrown" terrorists are a threat to the US. She offered the explanation that adolescents who might be susceptible to recruitment by gangs might also be potential terrorists.

"Combine that personal adolescent upheaval with the explosion of information technologies and communications tools - tools which American kids are using to broadcast messages from al-Qaeda - and there is a road map to terror, a 'retail outlet' for anger and warped aspirations. Link that intent with a trained terrorist operative who has actual capability, and a 'Made in the USA' suicide bomber is born," Harman said.

The bill specifically identifies the Internet as a tool of radicalization. "The Internet has aided in facilitating violent radicalization, ideologically based violence, and the homegrown terrorism process in the United States by providing access to broad and constant streams of terrorist-related propaganda to United States citizens."

In a press release, Caroline Fredrickson, director of the Washington American Civil Liberties Union legislative office, took issue with this characterization. "If Congress finds the Internet is dangerous, then the ACLU will have to worry about censorship and limitations on First Amendment activities. Why go down that road?" Fredrickson asked in a press release.

The ALCU has "serious concerns" about the bill. Fredrickson said, "Law enforcement should focus on action, not thought. We need to worry about the people who are committing crimes rather than those who harbor beliefs that the government may consider to be extreme."

According to Wilkens, the bill, in its current form, lacks specific definitions. which would give the Commission expansive and possibly dangerous powers. The Committee would be set up to address the process of "violent radicalization," which the bill defines as "the process of adopting or promoting an extremist belief system for the purpose of facilitating ideologically based violence to advance political, religious, or social change." According to Wilkens, the bill does not adequately define "an extremist belief system," opening the door for abuse.

"An 'extremist belief system' can be whatever anyone on the commission says it is. Back in the 60s, civil rights leaders and Vietnam War protesters were considered radicals. They weren't committing violence but they were considered radicals because of their belief system," Wilkens said.

The bill would also create a "Center of Excellence for the Study of Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism in the United States," on an unspecified University campus. Unlike other Centers of Excellence university-based government research centers created by the Department of Homeland Security, the Center established by this bill could have a chilling effect on political activity on campus because of its specific mission to "assist Federal, State, local and tribal homeland security officials through training, education, and research in preventing violent radicalization and homegrown terrorism," according to Wilkens.

"If you are on campus and the thought police are on campus are you going to want to join a political group?" Wilkens asked.

Congressman and presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) was one of three Democrats who voted against the bill, but he has given no public explanation for his opposition and his office did not respond to a call for comment as of this writing.

Neither the Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-California) nor Congressman John Conyers (D-Michigan), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, voted on the bill.

The bill has been referred to the Senate Homeland Security Committee, chaired by Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Connecticut). With overwhelming support from the House, it is likely to pass quickly through the Senate.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Forum on American freedom at 7 p.m. Tuesday (TONIGHT) at OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology

Contact Gladys Tiffany 973-9049, Melanie Dietzel 442-8600, Dick Bennett 442-4600
SPONSORED BY OMNI: CENTER FOR PEACE, JUSTICE, AND ECOLOGY
FORUM
Five citizens in the humanities will discuss the new book by Naomi Wolf, The End of America: A Citizen’s Call to Action. Wolf describes ten steps dictators have taken to shut down a democratic, open society—from Mussolini, Hitler, and Stalin to Pinochet. Each of those ten steps is now under way in the United States today. The book is an impassioned call to return to the aspirations and beliefs of the Founding Fathers for a nation of, by, and for the people.

WHEN: TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 7 PM

WHERE: UNITED CAMPUS MINISTRY/OMNI, 902 W. MAPLE, FAYETTEVILLE,
Corner of Maple and Storer, north of UA’s Old Main, adjacent east to Tri-Delta Sorority. Parking on Maple, Storer, campus parking lot a block north, and behind OMNI.
PANELISTS: Adelaide Adamson, Claire Detels, Tom Kennedy, Leonard Schulte, Doug Thompson. Dick Bennett, Moderator.

NAOMI WOLF

Wolf’s international bestseller, The Beauty Myth, questioned the unrealistic standards of beauty of the cosmetics industry. She has also written Fire with Fire: The New Female Power and Promiscuities: The Secret Struggle for Womanhood. She co-founded The Woodhull Institute for Ethical Leadership, an organization that teaches young women how to become leaders and agents of change. A graduate of Yale and a former Rhodes Scholar, Wolf has written essays for The New Republic, The Wall Street Journal, Glamour, The New York Times, and other magazines and newspapers.

PANELISTS:
Addie Adamson, Ed.D. professor of English for 40+ years, taught the last seven as a teacher of English as A Second Language at the U of A, Fayetteville. I was a product of the 1960s, politically. I was teaching at San Antonio College from 1966 to 1975 (when I moved to the Mulberry River Valley, as a "drop-out" from the Nixon culture). I taught many wounded Vietnam Veterans and swore that I could never support any war again. Today, I feel that the U.S. government is making even more disastrous mistakes than did Nixon and cohorts. I fear greatly for our country. That is why I am glad to be on a panel to discuss this issue.

Claire Detels is UA Professor in Music History and Humanities active in arts education reform and feminist theory; keyboard performer and director of the Butcher-Detels Four-Hand Duo; author of Music in the Western Tradition and Soft Boundaries: Re-Visioning the Arts and Aesthetics in American Education.

Thomas C. Kennedy is UA Prof. Emer. of History Emeritus) & former Chair. He was President & Program Chair (three times) of Western Conference on British Studies, President of the Friends Historical Society (Great Britain, 1995), and Distinguished Alumnus, University of Dayton (1989). His publications include: British Quakerism, 1860-1920 and A History of the No-Conscription Fellowship, 1914-1919.

Leonard Schulte was raised Catholic in a small town in southwestern Missouri, attended seminary for six years, and became highly skeptical of his religious belief. He then studied philosophy at three different universities, most recently at the University of Arkansas from 1989 to 1993, where he completed all degree requirements for a Doctorate except for the dissertation. He has since taught philosophy courses, including Intro. to Phil, and Intro. to Ethics and Logic, at North West Arkansas Community College.

Doug Thompson is a news reporter and columnist for The Morning News of Northwest Arkansas and for the Arkansas News Bureau. The bureau provides state government news for newspapers in Fort Smith, Jonesboro, Conway, Pine Bluff and other regions of the state. He is a resident of Fayetteville, where he contributes a column to the Fayetteville Free Weekly. He's a long-standing critic of the current administration's policies on domestic spying and use of torture, among its other intelligence-gathering failures.

Dick Bennett is UA Prof. Emeritus in English, founder of OMNI, and compiler of Peace Movement Directory.

THE AMERICAN FREEDOM CAMPAIGN AGENDA, A CALL TO ACTION

(Appended at the end of Wolf’s book.)

At critical moments in our history, Americans have been called upon to protect our Constitutional guarantees of liberty and justice. We face such a moment today. The American Freedom Campaign is a non-partisan citizens' alliance formed to reverse the abuse of executive power and restore our system of checks and balances with these ten goals:

Fully restore the right to challenge the legality of one's detention, or habeas corpus, and the right of detained suspects to be charged and brought to trial.

Prohibit torture and all cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment.

Prohibit the use of secret evidence.

Prohibit the detention of anyone, including U.S. citizens, as an "enemy combatant" outside the battlefield, and on the President's say-so alone.

Prohibit the government from secretly breaking and entering our homes, tapping our phones or email, or seizing our computers without a court order, on the President's say-so alone.

Prohibit the President from "disappearing" anyone and holding them in secret detention.

Prohibit the executive from claiming "state secrets" to deny justice to victims of government misdeeds, and from claiming "executive privilege" to obstruct Congressional oversight and an open government.

Prohibit the abuse of signing statements, where the President seeks to disregard duly enacted provisions of bills.

Use the federal courts, or courts-martial, to charge and prosecute terrorism suspects, and close Guantanamo down.

Reaffirm that the Espionage Act does not prohibit journalists from reporting on classified national security matters without fear of prosecution.

Dick Bennett
jbennet@uark.edu

Monday, November 26, 2007

Dick Bennett's presentation at Shiloh Museum on podcast

Please click on the link below and go down to episode 14 on the page.

Dick Bennett podcast Shiloh Museum


or paste this link into browser address bar:
http://www.springdaleark.org/shiloh/podcasts/podcast_info.htm#episode14

Be patient while it loads.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Presidential candidates on global warming


Candidates speak

This Saturday, November 17, presidential candidates will gather in Los Angeles for the first ever Presidential Forum on Global Warming and America's Energy Future. The event will be a critical opportunity to hear from the candidates on their positions and to spotlight the climate crisis as one of the most important leadership challenges facing the next president.
> Thanks to you and thousands of other activists, energy and global warming are taking center stage in the 2008 campaign. This forum is an opportunity for you to hear from the candidates directly about where they stand on these issues you care so much about.
> More than a thousand people will fill the theater to watch the event, and due to overwhelming interest, we are giving everyone the chance to tune in!
> You can watch the live webcast at www.grist.org/webcast.
> The event, which is sponsored by Grist and Living on Earth, will start this Saturday at 5:10 EST (2:10 PST) with remarks from Laurie David and a welcome address from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Each of the candidates will then get 30 minutes on stage to talk about their vision for solving our energy problems and answer questions on their policies.
> Here's the schedule on Saturday, November 17:
Congressman Dennis Kucinich
Senator Hillary Clinton
Senator John Edwards
> League of Conservation Voters' Education Fund has been a key partner in helping pull this important event together and we wanted to make sure that all of you had the opportunity to tune in!
> Be sure to visit www.grist.org/webcast this Saturday to watch the presidential forum on energy and global warming, and please forward this to your friends and family so they can see where the candidates stand on the most critical challenges facing our nation and the world today.
> Sincerely,
> Gene Karpinski
> President
> League of Conservation Voters Education Fund

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A melting Alaska draws visitors

By Yereth Rosen
The Christian Science Monitor
November 14, 2007
"Tourists still flock to Alaska to see Mount McKinley and ice caves, but a small and steady stream of visitors now head to the last frontier to see thawing tundra, crumbling glaciers, and ailing forests. Take Shishmaref, an Inupiat Eskimo village on the state's remote northwest coast. Known for exquisite ivory carvings and high-quality seal oil, it lures travelers these days because of its precarious perch on melting land.
When a team of scientists and religious leaders arrived in August, a highlight of the tour was viewing a house that had tumbled over the edge of the beach bluff; A storm had cut 20 feet from the shoreline previously held fast by frozen permafrost and sea-ice buildup.
"To many of us, Alaska is the distant early-warming system for the future of climate change," says Eric Chivian of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School, which organized the trip. Because Alaska is heating up more than five times faster than the world as a whole, scientists, congressmen, foreign dignitaries, and the curious are coming to see the effects of global warming firsthand...,
"There is that sense that Alaska's going to change because [change] is inevitable, so let's see it before it changes," says Kirk Hoessle, owner of Alaska Wildland Adventures. Clients become more aware of the warming impacts in Alaska when they see the vast stretches of beetle-killed trees on the Kenai Peninsula or learn about the recent spate of lightning-strike fires that are uncharacteristic for the region, he says."

Veterans Day: A Day for Peace or for War?

By Ann Wright
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Truthout

Tuesday 13 November 2007

Could you ever imagine that Veterans Day was originally enacted as a day for world peace? Not by the way veterans who stand for peace are treated in Veterans Day ceremonies! Yet, according to the Veterans Affairs web site, Veterans Day, formerly known as Armistice Day, was originally a US legal holiday to honor the end of World War I and to honor the need for world peace.

When it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, to honor the end of World War I, the US Congress stated: Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations. In 1938, the US Congress codified its earlier resolution by legislation naming November 11 as Armistice Day and dedicating the day "to the cause of world peace." In 1954, after World War II and the Korean Conflict, Congress - at the urging of the veterans service organizations - amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word "Armistice" and inserting the word "Veterans." With the approval of this legislation on June 1, 1954, November 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars and a national holiday still dedicated to "the cause of world peace."
Yet, now we have many Veterans Day organizers who want to silence "peace" on Veterans Day. This past weekend we "celebrated" Veterans Day, a day for all veterans and a day for "world peace", or so I thought, until I went to Long Beach, California. Like so many aspects of our military, events surrounding Veterans Day have been privatized. The City of Long Beach has given Veterans Day to a private group, a group that decides which veterans can participate in a Veterans Day parade.
The private organizers in Long Beach said veterans groups that are against the war and for peace were not allowed to march in the parade, as they did not have the proper "spirit."
Yet, the legislation enacting Veterans Day states that "the cause of world peace" is the goal of Veterans Day.
Private citizens who have never served in the military are authorized by the City of Long Beach to decide what Veterans Day stands for and which veterans are the "real" veterans - the veterans who meet their agenda.
In another strange anomaly about Veterans Day, in Santa Barbara, California, members of the Veterans for Peace chapter have had to carry their discharge papers in order to march in the city's Veterans Day parade. The same requirement was not made for Veterans of Foreign Wars or American Legion or any other veterans group participating in the parade. This year the Boston police arrested eighteen members of Veterans for Peace when they refused to move from the front of the podium at City Hall Plaza when parade officials wouldn't allow them to carry signs opposing the war in Iraq while marching in Boston's Veterans Day parade. Some of the protesters wore gags over their mouths, which they said symbolized the fact that they were permitted to march in the parade but not exercise their right to free speech. According to the Boston Globe, Nate Goldschlag, a veteran standing in front of the podium, said: "Our free speech and civil rights are being abridged here. We should be allowed to express our opposition to this war."

In Atlanta, the Veterans for Peace Chapter and the American Veterans for Equal Rights Georgia (AVER), a gay and lesbian veterans group, had their applications to participate in the Parade initially denied with this comment from the parade organizers: "Application denied. Failure to follow guidelines in previous year." Last year the VFP Atlanta chapter had a truck with a banner that said, "BRING THEM HOME ... NOW!" The truck also had a banner with a picture of First Lt. Ehren Watada, the first commissioned officer to refuse to deploy to Iraq because he believed the invasion of Iraq was illegal. After first denying their applications, the association in charge of the Atlanta Veterans Day parade later said the groups could march but could not display any messages of peace, in the case of VFP, or show any "public displays of affection," in the case of AVER. "This is not a political parade. We don't allow anyone out there to promote ideas. There is no agenda allowed," Melvin Myers, president of the Parade Association, told Atlanta Progressive News.

In the Denver parade this year, the local Veterans for Peace chapter that had walked in the parade last year was told it was not invited back because its members were against the war. The day before the parade, a representative of the Denver United Veterans Council, the group organizing the city of Denver Veterans Day parade said there had been a misunderstanding and issued a late invitation to the VFP chapter. Frank Bessinger, a member of the Veterans for Peace group, said, "We didn't want to have to fight to get into the parade, we didn't want to have to protest. We're a veterans group and we just wanted to be in the Veterans Day Parade."

We veterans know that veterans have always had a variety of opinions on policies of every administration. During the Vietnam War, many, if not most, of those who served in Vietnam disagreed with the United States invasion and occupation of Vietnam. Today, many who have served in Iraq disagree with the invasion and occupation of Iraq, but despite their disagreement they served. Over 70 percent of the American people disagree with the war in Iraq, so why should veterans who also disagree with the war not be allowed to march in a Veterans Day parade?

City leaders should not give private organizations the right to deny veterans who believe in peace a place in a parade on a national veterans holiday created for peace!

Next year, we should put pressure on our city councils early to ensure the right of all veterans organizations to march in Veterans Day parades on a day dedicated to peace.

Ann Wright served 29 years in the US military (13 years on active duty and 16 years in the US Army Reserves. She also was a US diplomat for 16 years and served in Nicaragua, Grenada, Somalia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Sierra Leone, Micronesia and Mongolia. She helped reopen the US Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, in December, 2001. She resigned from the US diplomatic corps in March 2003 in opposition to the war in Iraq. She is the co-author of "Dissent: Voices of Conscience" that will be available in January 2008.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Reuters reports that Chrisian Aid says rich nations must pay carbon debt

Rich must bear climate change costs - report
(Release at 0001 GMT, Monday Nov 12)
By Jeremy Lovell
LONDON, Nov 12 (Reuters) — The rich caused the problem and must therefore pay the price of fixing the global climate change crisis, a new report said on Monday.
Christian Aid, an agency of British and Irish churches, said industrialised nations were historically responsible and therefore morally liable to foot the multi-billion dollar cost of tackling the problem of man-made emissions of carbon gases.
"Nations that have grown rich in part by polluting without facing the costs of doing so must now repay their carbon debt to the developing world," said Andrew Pendleton, author of "Truly Inconvenient - tackling poverty and climate change at once".
It is an argument that will appeal to the developing nations which have used it regularly, but will probably meet diplomatic foot-dragging in the industrialised world whose economies are being threatened by surging oil prices.
Based on the Greenhouse Development Rights framework -- an equation allocating responsibility for emissions of greenhouse gases -- the United States should shoulder 34.3 percent of the annual bill, with the European Union on 26.6 percent.
India and China, both rapidly industrialising but still way behind their developed world counterparts, should bear 0.3 percent and 7.0 percent of the bill respectively.
Based on the calculation a year ago by British economist Nicholas Stern that acting now would cost one percent of gross world product a year, Washington's bill would be $212 billion a year while Brussels' would be $164 billion, the report said.
The report is aimed directly at a meeting next month of United Nations' environment ministers on the Indonesian island of Bali which environmentalists want to agree to open urgent talks on a new global climate protocol.
The Kyoto Protocol requires industrialised nations to cut carbon gases by five percent on average below 1990 levels in the period 2008-2012 when it expires, with as yet nothing in prospect to replace it.
But the United States rejected it in 2002 as being economic suicide and it is not binding on developing countries such as China which is building a coal-fired power station a week to feed its booming economy.
(Reporting by Jeremy Lovell; Editing by Giles Elgood)
^REUTERS@ Reut06:29 11-11-07

UN environmental office

Jim Sniffen
Information Officer
UN Environment Programme
New York
tel: +1-212-963-8094/8210
info@nyo.unep.org
www.nyo.unep.org

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sustainability means keeping soil on hills and prairies and everywhere in between


John Rule, poet and English professor and outdoorsman, tends his garden on a sunny hillside north of Township Street in Fayetteville, Arkansas, on Nov. 11, 2007.

The fight to slow climate change must take account of the quality of air, water and soil if it is to succeed in preventing the earth from becoming uninhabitable for human beings and other living things.

OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology's carbon caps task force supports state climate-change commission


Carbon Caps Task Force met Sunday on Dick Bennett's back deck



Sunday, November 4, 2007

Fayetteville participates in nationwide sustainability rally


Matthew Petty leads
Sustainability
Center's rally Nov. 3, 2007, on Fayetteville, Arkansas, square.

PLEASE CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
Please click on link to read story in Northwest Arkansas Times.

Matthew Petty of Fayetteville dismantles booth after successful rally on Fayetteville square Nov. 3, 2007.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Step up against climate change today

Dear fellow Americans,

Tomorrow--this Saturday, November 3--we Americans have an extraordinary opportunity to contribute to the international fight against global warming, by pressing our own government to take action. On Saturday, a wave of rallies across the U.S. will pressure leaders to confront the climate crisis, and on Monday, thousands of U.S. young people will flood the halls of Congress for personal lobbying visits.

Most Avaaz members live outside the U.S., and tens of thousands of them have sent in messages urging Congress to act on climate change. But here in the U.S., we can get involved more directly. Avaaz's friend Al Gore has written a quick message explaining more--see below, or just click here to get involved:

http://events.stepitup2007.org/partners/avaaz

As the only American on the Avaaz staff, I know how frustrating it is to watch our own government, acting in our name, block global progress on this issue. But change is possible--and tomorrow, we can help make it real.

- Ben Wikler, Avaaz.org

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Al Gore

Dear friends,

The power of a single individual to create change has always inspired me. Earlier this year, my friend Bill McKibben decided he was going to establish a day of action to fight the climate crisis.

Out of his idea, "Step It Up 2007" was born, and on April 14th tens of thousands of Americans joined together at 1,400 rallies to raise their voices and demand that Congress cut carbon 80% by 2050.

"Step It Up 2: Who's A Leader" will take place this Saturday. You can find a rally in your area by visiting:

http://events.stepitup2007.org/partners/avaaz

"Step It Up 2" is going to be an incredible event. Already, 59 Members of Congress and 7 Presidential candidates have signed up to attend rallies around the country. Participating is so easy: just click the link above and find a Step It Up event in your area. With hundreds scheduled in all 50 states, there is probably a rally near your home.

After you RSVP, use Step It Up's online tool to invite your member of Congress, both your Senators, and all of the presidential candidates. We need to convince as many of our elected leaders as possible to attend these events so they can witness first-hand the huge movement demanding action to solve the climate crisis.

Just the act of inviting your member of Congress will help demonstrate the incredible support for our cause.

Sign up to attend a Step It Up Rally by visiting:

http://events.stepitup2007.org/partners/avaaz

People like Bill McKibben and events like Step It Up are helping us build the political will necessary to end the climate crisis. It is vital you participate in any way you can -- November 3rd is going to be an incredible day.

Thank you,

Al Gore

-------- End forwarded message --------
PS: At the same time as these events take place across the country, over 5,000 students from around the nation will be making history in Washington, D.C. at a conference called Power Shift. On Monday, where thousands of students will storm Capitol Hill, armed with photographs of Step It Up events as well as messages from Avaaz members around the world. When they meet with Congress, students won't just be speaking for themselves--they'll be representing the people around the country and the world who have joined the call for real action on climate change. If you're anywhere close to DC, it's not too late to get involved--just click here: http://powershift07.org.

ABOUT AVAAZ

Avaaz.org is an independent, not-for-profit global campaigning organization that works to ensure that the views and values of the world's people inform global decision-making. (Avaaz means "voice" in many languages.) Avaaz receives no money from governments or corporations, and is staffed by a global team based in London, New York, Paris, Washington DC, Geneva, and Rio de Janeiro.

Write to info@avaaz.org. You can also send postal mail to our New York office: 260 Fifth Avenue, 9th floor, New York, NY 10001 U.S.A.

If you have technical problems, please go to http://www.avaaz.org.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Video Underground schedules November series

Schedule for Video Underground


November 11: Ghosts of Abu Ghraib

November 25: The Corporation

December 9: Who Shot My Brother? (about Colombia)

December 23: Joyeux Noel (the WWI battlefield Christmas truce among French, German, and British troops)

Newsletter on nuclear weapons

OMNI NEWSLETTER ON NUCLEAR WEAPONS‏
From: Omnicenter Communications (omninews@listserv.uark.edu) on behalf of Dick Bennett (jbennet@uark.edu)
Sent:Wed 10/31/07 9:18 AM
Reply-to:Dick Bennett (jbennet@uark.edu)
To: OMNINEWS@LISTSERV.UARK.EDU

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OMNI NEWSLETTER: 2nd SPECIAL NUMBER ON NUCLEAR WAR GENOCIDE , OCTOBER 31, 2007, OMNI Building a Culture of PEACE, Seeking Truth and Taking Action

Dick Bennett, Editor for Special Issues

US THREATENING TO ATTACK IRAN FOR SEEKING NUCLEAR POWER BECAUSE IT COULD LEAD TO NUCLEAR WEAPONS, BUT US IS NOT WORKING TO ELIMINATING US NUCLEAR WEAPONS OR THE WEAPONS IN OTHER NUCLEAR NATIONS, BUT IN FACT RECENTLY ENABLED INDIA TO ENHANCE ITS NUCLEAR ARSENAL.

NUCLEAR WAR (first Nuclear GENOCIDE Newsletter June 14, 2007)
We cannot refer to nuclear bombs as weapons, as though their destructiveness is only one of degree with conventional bombs. A one megaton nuclear bomb is about 50 times more powerful than the bomb that produced more than 100,000 deaths in Hiroshima. A one megaton bomb would vaporize 6,000,000 New Yorkers if dropped over Times Square. It’s a genocide bomb. But these realities should not cause despair. We can ban these bombs. We have the intelligence and the knowledge. We only lack the will. What could cause us to feel despair is the silence of the public. Let each of us be leaders to end this danger. Let each of us give up one meaningless activity in our life, and focus that energy on changing our country’s nuclear derangement .

UN CHARTER (a Treaty initiated by US and signed into US law)
Article 2(4): All members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

WHAT THE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES SAY

FROM THE NUCLEAR AGE PEACE FOUNDATION Below is an overview of an important new feature on the Foundation’s website (www.wagingpeace.org), which provides information on the views of US Presidential candidates on issues of US nuclear policy. I hope that you will use this resource and let your friends know about it. US nuclear policy should be one of the most important issues, if not THE most important issue, in this campaign. US voters should not let another election go by without thoroughly understanding the positions of candidates on this critical issue for our common future.
David Krieger President Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
PMB 121, 1187 Coast Village Road, Suite 1, Santa Barbara, CA 93108
www.wagingpeace.org www.nuclearfiles.org
Click here to add your voice to a growing movement for peace and a nuclear weapons-free world

US Presidential Candidates
Positions on US Nuclear Weapons Policy
One of the most important issues of the 2008 US Presidential election is US nuclear weapons policy. We believe it should be a priority issue when Americans go to the voting booth next year in primary and general elections. It's not our purpose to suggest how people should vote, but rather to educate and inform the public on where candidates stand.

To this end, the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation is pleased to announce the latest addition to our website. We feature key quotes made by the major Republican and Democratic candidates on five issues relating to US nuclear weapons policy:

? Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty

? Disarmament

? Missile Defense

? New Nuclear Weapons / Reliable Replacement Warhead

? Use of Nuclear Weapons

Click here to view the Presidential Candidate quotes page.

Additionally, Foundation President David Krieger sent all candidates a survey asking their positions on several important points. Results of the survey are coming in. Click here to read what we have received so far.

These pages will be updated often over the next 13 months as nuclear weapons issues continue to gain prominence in the presidential campaign. Please check in with us frequently at www.wagingpeace.org to see what else the candidates are saying.
We encourage you to forward this message to at least 5 friends so they too can discover where the candidates stand on an issue that affects each of us so deeply.
If you know of a quote that does not appear in our report that you think should be included, please contact us.

Read what the candidates have to say about US nuclear
weapons policy

Nuclear Weapons: Candidates Debate Nuclear Policy
The Democratic candidates for president clashed over whether or not they would use nuclear weapons against other countries in last Sunday’s Democratic Party debate. Read what the candidates had to say. FCNL is currently compiling the major candidates’ statements on the issues of Iraq, Iran, and nuclear weapons.

Debates on nuclear weapons ignore one critical point: they must never be used again!

Hello Dick,
As the presidential candidates strive to stake out their positions on national security, one thing must be crystal clear: The willingness to use nuclear weapons is not a measure of toughness or pragmatism; it’s immoral and reckless.
Tell the 2008 presidential candidates we need a plan for a nuclear weapon-free world >>
Using or threatening to use such weapons would only erode our security, not enhance it.
Debates between the candidates about when and under what circumstances they would consider using nuclear weapons ignore the critical reality of the twenty-first century: Nuclear weapons must never be used again.
We need a President who will make a nuclear weapon-free world a top priority of the next administration. Sign today >>
Thank you for your help in making peace and security a priority!
Sincerely,
Breeana L.
Care2 Campaign Team

P.S. If you cannot see the links in this message, please go to: http://go.care2.com/e/tBRA/NnCA/oKXw

Thank you for signing up to receive Action Alerts via ThePetitionSite or Care2 website. Your email address has not been bought from other sources. If you learned something interesting from this newsletter, please forward it to your friends, family and colleagues.

Care2.com, Inc. 275 Shoreline Drive, Suite 150 Redwood City, CA 94065
http://www.care2.com

NUCLEAR BOMB PLANS, CIA, AND IRAN

James Risen, State of War. Free Press, 2006. See The Guardian Jan. 5, 2006 for extract on CIA giving Iran bomb plans.

YOUTUBE FILM ON NUCLEAR AGE

Below is a link for a short film by Foundation member Mary Becker on the News and Politics page of YouTube. The film, which won first prize at the 2006 Cannes online competition, provides a short history of the Nuclear Age and is well worth viewing. Mary would love to see interested people add informed comments to the conversation on YouTube about the film.

http://www.youtube.com/categories_portal?c=25&e=1

David Krieger President, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

PMB 121, 1187 Coast Village Road, Suite 1 Santa Barbara, CA 93108 www.wagingpeace.org www.nuclearfiles.org

MIDWEST CONFERENCE ON NUCLEAR THREATS

“Is Iran the Real Nuclear Threat?” Marquette Univ., Milwaukee. peace@peaceactionwi.org

GEORGE ON IRAN AND NUCLEAR WAR
I have no idea if you have given this any thought but it is a serious concern of mine.
Ever since dropping a nuclear weapon on Japan this weapon has been put away in the arsenal of many countries including many of our allies. To date these weapons have been used as a deterrent to aggressor nations who realize that we could easily wipe out any nation that attacked us. This defensive strategy was what kept us free from wars against our homeland.

G.W. Bush's switch to a offensive as a defense has surely made our allies as well as our enemies look toward us and wonder just what this country is doing. They could easily get the idea that our government is looking for world domination rather than peace. If these allies start siding with Russia, China, and India, we could see those countries build a war machine capable of overwhelming power to initiate a nuclear strike against us because they fear that we are preparing to move from the Middle East into their countries.

We could find ourselves being attacked with no alternative than to send every nuclear missile we have into the middle of Europe and the Far East.

George Bush would then feel complete because he would believe that Armageddon has arrived and he will be taken into heaven to spend eternity with Jesus Christ.

No, I am not crazy.... I am putting a huge puzzle together and I do not like what I see for this planet.

I feel like a lucky one... I have lived a long life and never had to live in a war torn country. I believe this could happen right here in the Good ole USA unless someone quickly finds a way to get Bush back to his Ranch with only animals to care for.

I was very happy to hear John Edwards speech today whereby he talked about the fact that this country Is NOT SAFER TODAY than 6 Years ago. This is 180 degrees form Hillary Clinton's claim that we are Safer today.

http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2007/09/07/350273.aspx

Did We Miss the Lesson of Nagasaki?
Date: Tue, 14 Aug 2007 >Did We Miss the Lesson of Nagasaki? >By William D. Hartung
>8-13-07
>
>
>Mr. Hartung is the director of the Arms and Security
>Initiative at the New America Foundation. He writes
>frequently on nuclear non-proliferation and U.S.
>nuclear policy.
>
>It has been 62 years since the atomic bombings of
>Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but the moral and strategic
>lessons of those devastating acts have still not been
>fully learned.
>
>Despite the efforts of scientists like Leo Szilard and
>diplomats like John McCloy to promote alternative means
>for ending the war, the bombings went forward. There
>are still debates among historians and the public at
>large about the primary rationale for the use of the
>weapons. Some interpretations accept the official claim
>that it was done as a way of ending the war as soon as
>possible, on allied terms. Others note that the
>intention of the Roosevelt administration had always
>been to use the atom bomb once it had been developed,
>and that in this sense President Truman inherited a
>policy that already had considerable momentum behind
>it. Other historians suggest that the bombings were
>aimed at preventing the Soviet Union from entering the
>war in the Pacific theater.
>
>It is possible that all of these factors were at work
>to some degree, and they may constitute an explanation
>- though not a moral justification - for the attack on
>Hiroshima. But even if one accepts the rationales put
>forward for the Hiroshima bombing, the use of a second
>atomic weapon against Nagasaki just three days later
>seems like an act of gratuitous cruelty on a monumental
>scale.
>
>We now know that Japanese leaders were still reeling
>from the impact of the first bombing when the second
>bomb struck. Debates over terms of surrender were
>deadlocked, but a few more days' time - especially in
>light of the Soviet Union's imminent entry into the war
>- may well have produced an agreement acceptable to the
>United States without the need to destroy Nagasaki. In
>addition, the sheer destructive power of the Hiroshima
>bombing -- killing tens of thousands of people
>immediately while turning the city into a pile of
>radioactive rubble -- should have raised qualms about
>launching another strike in such short order.
>
>The Nagasaki bombing went forward in any case and
>subsequent efforts to curb the use of atomic energy for
>military purposes failed. President Truman apparently
>believed that the U.S. nuclear monopoly would last
>indefinitely, telling Robert Oppenheimer that he
>believed that the Soviets would "never" get the bomb.
>Just a few years later he was proven wrong, and the
>nuclear arms race was off and running. With so many
>factors at play, it is by no means certain that U.S.
>forbearance over Nagasaki would have changed this
>tragic outcome, but it might have at least opened the
>door to other possibilities.
>
>Six decades later the United States remains the only
>nation to have used nuclear arms as a weapon of war.
>The absence of additional attacks has been driven in
>part by the moral opprobrium attached to the use of
>these weapons of mass terror, and in part by the fear
>of devastating retaliation by another nuclear power --
>particularly on the U.S.-Soviet front. But despite this
>record, the foundations of U.S. nuclear policy remain
>morally suspect. There has not been another Nagasaki,
>but it is U.S. policy to engage in veiled threats to
>launch just such an attack, even if the target nation
>does not possess nuclear weapons.
>
>The immorality of U.S. declaratory nuclear policy was
>made evident recently when Barack Obama asserted that
>"it would be a profound mistake to use nuclear weapons
>under any circumstance . . . involving civilians." This
>seemingly common sense statement was roundly criticized
>by rival presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and
>Christopher Dodd, who essentially argued that the
>nuclear option should never publicly be "taken off the
>table."
>
>Not only is the prospect of using nuclear weapons in
>circumstances in which civilians will be killed
>immoral, but the threat of doing so violates
>international law, as expressed in an historic 1995
>advisory opinion by the World Court.
>
>This policy is also counterproductive at the strategic
>level. The threat to use nuclear weapons against non-
>nuclear states is only liable to spur them to seek
>their own. Taking this stance toward Iran -- even if
>the actual use of the weapons is extremely unlikely --
>will undermine prospects for negotiations to curb
>Teheran's program while giving leverage to officials
>within Iran who want to go from nuclear enrichment to
>nuclear weapons.
>
>Short of getting a global agreement to abolish nuclear
>weapons -- a goal worth striving for no matter how
>difficult it may be to achieve in practice -- one of
>the most important steps the U.S. could take would be
>to adopt a policy of "no first use" of nuclear weapons
>against any nation that is not literally poised to
>launch a nuclear attack on the United States. This
>shift in U.S. policy would suggest that it is possible
>to reverse the mentality that led to the bombing of
>Nagasaki, even at this late date.

Nuclears weapons must never be used again !
Hello Dick,
We each have a responsibility to our children, grandchildren and future generations to end the threat that nuclear weapons pose. And, to carry out this responsibility, we need a leader who agrees nuclear weapons must never be used again!

We need a President who will make a nuclear weapon-free world a top priority of the next administration.

Keeping nuclear weapons out of the hands of those who would use them, whether terrorist groups or governments, and working to eliminate the world’s nuclear arsenals are not challenges we can afford to put off.

The next presidential candidate should have a strong plan to:

Stop the development and production of new nuclear weapons around the world.
Lock up and safeguard bomb-making materials.
Promote peaceful, non-nuclear resolutions to the nuclear crises in North Korea and Iran.
This issue must be put on the forefront to make sure nuclear weapons are never used again. Tell the 2008 presidential candidates we need a plan for a nuclear weapon-free world >>

Thank you for your help in making peace and security a priority!
Sincerely,
Breeana L.
Care2 Campaign Team

P.S. If you cannot see the links in this message, please go to: http://go.care2.com/e/u6Aw/pihD/oKXw



Thank you for signing up to receive Action Alerts via ThePetitionSite or Care2 website. Your email address has not been bought from other sources. If you learned something interesting from this newsletter, please forward it to your friends, family and colleagues.


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Success: Congress Stops New Bomb Plant
Four separate committees in two chambers of Congress have now zeroed out funding for the Bush administration's proposal to build a new nuclear weapons facility to be located in one of six states. FCNL worked with people like you around the country to oppose this new facility. But the administration remains committed to its plan to develop and build new nuclear weapons. Read more.

U. S. ANTI-NUCLEAR ORGANIZATIONS

Council for a Livable World (DC)

Global Network Against Weapons in Space (Maine) Bruce Gagnon’s org.

Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action (Poulsbo, WA)(year around year after year protests against the Trident submarines)

Nevada Desert Experience (Las Vegas), annual protest

Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) (Takoma Park, MD)

The Nuclear Resister

Magazine, keeps up with political prisoners also

Nukewatch (Wisconsin), edited for many years by a noble couple

Nukewatch Quarterly

I am on the mailing list of all except CLW. We need more people in NWA to connect with these indispensable groups, to help them struggle against nuclear holocaust and to raise awareness and resistance here.



AFSC’s work in North Korea: Read and listen to an interview with Randy Ireson who recently completed 9 years as the development assistance coordinator of AFSC’s North Korea program.

NDE Newsletter, Divine Strake Hearing, & more

August Desert Witness at Los Alamos
August 3-4

NDE will join Pax Christi New Mexico to vigil, pray and Witness For Peace in Los Alamos, New Mexico on the 62nd Anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, Japan.

~ Friday, August 3rd ~
Santa Fe, New Mexico

Taking a Stand for Peace
Catholic Mass at Santa Maria de la Paz Church, 4:00 p.m.
...an evening with Fr. Roy Bourgeois, founder of School of the Americas Watch,
7:30 p.m. at El Museo Cultural

~ Saturday, August 4th ~
Nonviolence Training will be offered in Santa Fe
Santa Maria de la Paz Church, 9:00 a.m. - noon.

Walk, Pray & Vigil For Peace at Los Alamos, 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
BRING PEACE & NUCLEAR ABOLITION BANNERS

Download the PDF flyer
Visit the Pax Christi New Mexico website for more information

Reliable Replacement Warhead Funding

Congress is now deciding whether to fund the Reliable Replacement Warhead or not. This would arguably be a re-launch the U.S. Nuclear Weapons program, creating 125 new nuclear weapons a year. The House has cut funding in the spending bill for this, but the U.S. Senate has yet to create a bill in Energy and Water Appropriations that will cut all spending for new nuclear weapons. Speak out and ask your senators to create and support such a bill. Below are links to two organizations that have online campaigns for contacting your senators:

True Majority / Peace Action


Fort Huachuca Torture Protest Trial Update

Fr. Louis Vitale, OFM, NDE co-founder, is currently awaiting trial
for nonviolent prayer protest action at Fort Huachuca denouncing torture training and the Military Commisions Act of 2006.
Read the latest update

NDE's Desert Voices July 2007 Newsletter
Now Available Online in Color

Featuring:
“We Won’t be Fooled” April 1st rally at NTS Raises Diverse Voices for Peace
Sacred Peace Walk Reflections
Divine Strake Called Off - Where are We Now?
Spring Events: Poetry and Photos

Click to view the July 2007 issue of Desert Voices (804kb PDF)
(Right-click and choose Save Target/Link As... to save the newsletter on your computer)
Click to Download Acrobat Reader

NDE T-shirts
Now available online

Click to get your T-shirt

Jesse Manibusan's
Walking the Ways of Peace CD

Click to get your CD Now

Intern for NDE
Berkeley Internships Available

Upcoming Event

Hiroshima & Nagasaki Commemoration
August 3-4
with Pax Christi New Mexico
Los Alamos, New Mexico


NDE relies upon donations to continue its work. Your generous support is appreciated.



Nevada Desert Experience
1420 W. Barlett Avenue
Las Vegas, Nevada 89106
(702) 646-4814
www.nevadadesertexperience.org

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CONTACT YOUR CONGRESSIONAL REPRESENTATIVES

--Senator Blanche Lincoln: Web Site (they have contact links): www.lincoln.senate.gov; http://www.lincoln.senate.gov/index.cfm; http://www.lincoln.senate.gov/webform.html

Washington Office: 355 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, D.C. 20510-0404

Phone: (202) 224-4843 Fax: (202) 228-1371.

Fayetteville office: 251-1380. Lincoln’s staff is better informed than Boozman’s (see below), but obviously (her vote to join Bush in appropriating $95 billion more to keep the occupation going) they need a lot of education. (Send Dick, Melanie, Gladys, Kelly and Donna corrections and additions.)

Northwestern Regional Office
4 South College Avenue, Suite 205,
Fayetteville, AR 72701 (479) 251-1224; FAX (479) 251-1410
Community Affairs Specialist: John Hicks
State Central Office
912 West Fourth Street
Little Rock, AR 72201
TEL: (501) 375-2993
FAX: (501) 375-7064


--Senator Mark Pryor: Web Site (see contact link): www.pryor.senate.gov ; http://pryor.senate.gov/contact/ Pryor has no office in NWA, so call or write him and his staff in DC: Washington Office: 217 Russell Senate Office Building Washington, D.C. 20510-0403. Phone: (202) 224-2353 Fax: (202) 228-0908

Main District Office: 500 Pres. Clinton Ave., Suite 401, Little Rock, AR 72201.

Phone: (501) 324-6336 Fax: (501) 324-5320.

(Send Dick up to date details.)



--Congressman John Boozman, District 3, 12 counties from Benton to Washington

Lowell office: 479-725-0400. 213 W. Monroe, Suite K, 72745. ASK BOOZMAN WHO ON HIS STAFF IS KNOWLEDGEABLE ABOUT NUCLEAR WEAPONS. Boozman's new office in Lowell is located at 213 West Monroe in Lowell between I 540 and Business 71. Go there, talk to Boozman’s staff members. They are all polite young people, but now, made blind and deaf by the US Corporate/War complex, they need your peaceful explanation of reality and values. To reach that office take Exit 78 off I - 540 and go east. You will be on Hwy 264 which is also West Monroe. The office is in the Puppy Creek Plaza, past the McDonald's on the right. His suite is in the back of the complex to the left. Or write or call. Ms. McClure is Assistant Chief of Staff for the Lowell office, Ms. Breazeal focuses on gangs, and Ms. Stacy Davis is constituent staff member.

Ft. Smith office: 479-782-7787; 30 South 6th St. Rm 240, Ft. Smith 72901.

Harrison office: 870-741-6900; 402 N. Walnut, Suite 210, Harrison 72601.

DC address: 1708 Longworth House Office Bldng., Washington, DC 20515; 202-225-4301. Leslie Parker, appointments secretary: 202-225-4301. (Or she was, let me know if it’s now someone else.)