Monday, May 26, 2014



Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of PEACE, JUSTICE, AND ECOLOGY.  (#1 May 20, 2009; #2 May 31, 2010, #3 May 30, 2011; #4 May 28, 2012; #5 May 27, 2013).
 Alternative titles:  MOURNING FOR VICTIMS OF WARS DAY, IMMEMORIAL DAY.  (Veterans Day is Nov. 11, to be called ARMISTICE FOR ALL WARS DAY.)

Here is the link to all OMNI newsletters:   For a knowledge-based peace, justice, and ecology movement and an informed citizenry as the foundation for change.   SEEKING ALTERNATIVES TO MILITARISM, WARS, EMPIRE, FOR A CULTURE OF PEACE AND JUSTICE.   Here is the link to the Index: See: Veterans Day, Armed Forces Day, Imperialism, Individual Wars, Militarism, Torture, US Westward Expansion, Violence, War and Environment, War Resistance.

What is the mission of OMNI? 
With the Quakers (the AFSC, FCNL) we seek:
a world free of war and the threat of war,
a society with equity and justice for all,
a community where every person’s potential may be fulfilled,
and an earth restored.

Instead of Dead Warriors, let us celebrate those who tried and are trying to prevent the killing.   Link to Peace, Justice, Ecology Heroes:

Memorial Day, it seems to me, should also honor the Thoreaus, the conscientious objectors, the anti-war protesters, who attempted to forestall or shorten the more unjust or immoral of these wars. It isn’t only the fallen soldiers who served the nation, but also those who worked to ensure that no soldiers fell in unjust wars, in wars that after the UN Charter was passed in 1945, would be designated as ‘illegal.’ "  - Juan Cole, Informed Comment, May 27, 2013


Two kinds of violence disrupt the harmony of our world:  individual and structural.   This newsletter is part of OMNI’s NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL DAYS PROJECT, by which we counter the structural conditioning for violence and wars in such celebrations as Columbus Day, Armed Forces Day, and Memorial Day.    These national days of violence reinforce the national drive for hardness, punishment, wars, invasions and interventions—some fifty since WWII, amounting to permanent war, recounted by William Blum in Killing Hope and Rogue Nation and by Richard Rubenstein in his book Reasons to Kill: Why Americans Choose War (2010).   Rubenstein analyzes seven “key rationales for war” employed by successive US governments to gain public support for military action.

(The other half of the DAYS Project is the affirmation of nonviolent DAYS, such as United Nations DAY, Human Rights DAY, Conscientious Objectors’ DAY by which we strive for the goals of equity, health, protection of all species, and a world free of war and the threat of war.)

Victims Newsletter Numbers 1-5 are at the end. 

Contents of Mourning the Victims Day Newsletter #6
Decoration Day, Memorial Day, Honoring US Military
Critiques, Think About This Day
Commercialization of Memorial Day
The Weather Channel Celebrates Memorial Day
PBS Celebrates the Day
Marc Ash, MD Not to Glorify War
U.S. Peace Memorial Foundation, Remember All War Dead
Lisa Garrett, Wake Up to USA Transformed
Pierce, US at War with Itself for Money
Recent Related Newsletters
Earlier MD Newsletters

Memorial Day in United States

Memorial Day commemorates all Americans who have died in military service for the United States.

Memorial Day 2014

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formerly known as Decoration Day and commemorates all men and women, who have died in military service for the United States. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day and it is traditionally seen as the start of the summer season.
USA memorial day
Memorial Day remembers those who died serving the United States military.
© Alan Crosthwaite


  National Memorial Day Concert | PBS
Public Broadcasting Service
Watch the National Memorial Day Concert the Sunday before Memorial Day. Find out ... Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise co-host the 2014 concert. On the eve of ...

  Memorial Day 2014 parades and ceremonies in central ...
The Patriot‑News
1 day ago - Parade, memorial services and ceremonies for Memorial Day 2014 in central Pennsylvania.

COMMENT on the PBS Program, Sunday, May 25: 
     General Powell was a key speaker, despite his participation in the war crime of invading Iraq without cause and justified by falsehoods.  If his speech at the UN justifying the war arose from ignorance rather than from lying (a falsehood made with deliberate intent to deceive), why would anyone so stupid be invited to speak by PBS at its annual, three-hours long “National Memorial Day Concert”?  Many people in my home town of Fayetteville, AR, knew he was deluded or deluding as we heard the speech, for we had paid attention and done our homework.
     The General’s platitudes were followed by a recitation of the Lord’s Prayer.  Again, who arranged this program?  God is to be associated with people like Powell?  For shame PBS.

[Google told a little about the patriotic Day but most of the entries in the 7 pages of Google Memorial Day 2014 I read advertised shopping and traveling.  The commodification of this solemn Day needs little comment. Instead of asking We, the People, to be informed and to reflect about the attacks on the World Trade Center buildings, Pres. Bush urged us to go shopping. Perhaps, he felt, we would be sufficiently distracted that we would not mind that the next day and afterward he turned the nation to invade and bomb and kill without congressional deliberation.   –Dick]

  Walmart Memorial Day 2014 -
Walmart Memorial Day 2014. Save big at the Walmart Memorial Day 2014 event. Save money. Live better.

  Memorial Day 2014 Travel Deals: Last-Minute Weekend ... › ... › Travel
International Business Times
2 days ago - Memorial Day Weekend 2014 Travel Deals

1.                             5 unforgettable Memorial Day weekend getaways | Fox News
Fox News Channel
19 hours ago - 5 unforgettable Memorial Day weekend getaways ... the summer season with a bi-coastal, all-night party for Memorial Day weekend 2014.

Today, May 26, TWC mirrored PBS.  Here’s a sample of about five minutes duration:  “Meteorologist” praising all US soldiers who have lost their lives in wars.  Praising particularly the “Grey Berets,” the military meteorologists, and mentioning that Mike Bettis, a star on TWC, was training with them for a future program.  Showing Arlington Cemetery, with the “meteorologist” of the moment, Reynolds Wolf, praising those who “gave their last full measure.”  Then another TWC star, Stephanie,  interviewed two Marines standing next to their Osprey aircraft.  One of the Marines, a Captain I recall, said something like this:  We are ready to meet anything that happens when our country needs us.  We’re out on missions all the time.  Stephanie (wearing a tight, red dress) replied she “has open arms” for such guys “for protecting us,” and Wolf concurred.  Cut to nine commercials.  Turn off TV, I’m not paid enough.

Marc Ash, “Arlington” 
Reader Supported News, May 25, 2014 
here is probably no greater insult to those who have served their country than to use public support for them as a validation of war itself.
Memorial Day is not about the glorification of war. It is about the sacrifice of human beings who believed and believe that their sacrifice will bring about good.
Arlington National Cemetery is not the only place where American veterans are laid to rest, but it is certainly the symbol of burial with honor for those who have served. It is, however, important to remember how Arlington came to be.
Arlington House at Arlington National Cemetery was the home of Confederate general Robert E. Lee prior to the Civil War. As an act of personal retaliation against Lee, the union buried war dead in front of his home. Lee never returned to the house. Years of legal wrangling over the house followed, but the message was clear: the Union blamed Lee for what they saw as an unnecessary war and the toll, in human terms, was his to bear.
Arlington House and the dead around it might well be the greatest anti-war statement ever made. Every war exacts a horrible price in human terms; unnecessary wars are a betrayal of the very nations they purport to serve. Arlington bears witness to it all.
Why wait for the terrible price of war to be exacted to deliver the next war’s plunder to Arlington? The war planning itself should be done at Arlington House. When the next decision to launch a war that will add to Arlington’s toll is made let the dead speak too.
Let the planners stand as Robert E. Lee did at Arlington House and make the next decision there. Maybe they will make a better decision than he did. They will certainly have more help.
The senators, the White House staff, the Joint Chiefs, put the war planning room there, at Arlington. Let them meet there. Maybe Arlington will serve the purpose Union Gen. Montgomery C. Meigs intended when he convinced Lincoln to turn Arlington into a war cemetery: Make those who plan war account to the dead.

READ MORE  [reader responses]

Marc Ash was formerly the founder and Executive Director of Truthout, and is now founder and Editor of Reader Supported News.
Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.

Memorial Day 2014  US Peace Memorial Foundation 

to James
While Memorial Day is a time to remember soldiers who have died in war, I ask you to consider all who have been lost.  The U.S. has invaded more than 25 countries since the end of World War II, killing millions of people.  [William Blum in Killing Hope and Rogue State recounts over 40 invasions and interventions since 1945.  --Dick]   So far in 2014, President Obama’s forces have killed and wounded people in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, and Yemen.  Many were children.

If you are upset with the current level of militarism, please take action today!  The endless wars will stop when the American people demand it.

1.  Look at the bolded examples of antiwar action listed in the US Peace Registry.  Choose one that you could accomplish today.

2.  Tell us and your friends/family what you are doing for peace.  Encourage others to join you.

Our Foundation’s mission is focused solely on increasing the number of Americans who speak out against war(s).  Please make a donation today commensurate with your commitment to peace.

Since 2005, the US Peace Memorial Foundation has directed a nationwide effort to 
recognize peace leadership by publishing the US Peace Registry, awarding an annual Peace Prize, and planning for the US Peace Memorial in Washington, D.C.  These projects help move the United States toward a culture of peace, as we honor the millions of thoughtful and courageous Americans who have taken a public stand against one or more U.S. wars or who have devoted their time, energy, and other resources to finding peaceful solutions to international conflicts.  We celebrate these role models in hopes of inspiring other Americans to speak out against war and for peace.

Email me if you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions.  Thank you very much for your ongoing support.

Michael D. Knox, PhD, Chair
US Peace Memorial Foundation, Inc.
The IRS has determined that US Peace Memorial Foundation, Inc. is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) public charity.
Donations are tax deductible to the extent provided by U.S. law.  A receipt will be provided.
Copyright 2014, US Peace Memorial Foundation, Inc.





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THIS CRITIQUE ARRIVED AFTER I HAD POSTED THE 2013 NEWSLETTER:  We long to wake up on Mourning the Victims Day. . . .

Mon May 27, 2013 8:20 am (PDT) . Posted by:
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: <>
Date: Mon, May 27, 2013 at 8:07 AM

OPENING; DOTS , Memorial Day May 27th 2013

Host: Lila Garrett
Guests: Farah Almousani of Courage to Resist
David Swanson (
Tim Carpenter (PDA)
Good Monday morning. Welcome to *Connect the Dots*. I’m your host Lila
Garrett and, as always, I long to wake up on Memorial Day to find our
country at peace with the world. Instead of mourning the young men and
women who think they died fighting to protect their country, let us mourn
the truth. Let us mourn the fact that most of the time our beautiful youth
died to keep our permanent war economy alive.
They died for what
Eisenhower referred to as the military-industrial complex. They died for
the power and profit of strangers. Had they thought of the expression “die
for your country” as a public relations con job would they have risked
their lives in such massive numbers? Of course not. But profiteers &
presidents are so good at selling war…and most of us are so bad at knowing
when we’re being manipulated, it hurts us to recognize that practically
since its inception our country has been in a state of perpetual war. This
is a cause not for celebration, but for shame.
You feel I’m being disrespectful of our fallen perhaps? I am not taking
into consideration the sacrifice and “glory” of Memorial Day? You feel
perhaps this should be a day of prayer and other religious rituals? Very
well….How about this?
What if God actually was an old guy with a white beard, rather than an
abstraction. And he stood on top a mountain holding out his arms and
roared to the millions of armed service people below him, about to be
shipped off to war. What would he say??? I don’t know about your God, but
my god would cry out…..
“Stop! *You think you’re going off to save democracy, to protect your
country, to create freedom and equality*? Know that you are fighting to
maintain not your country but your country’s permanent war economy. Know
that you are about to kill strangers and very possibly get killed
yourselves for the power and profit of Lockhead Martin, Boeing,
Northrup-Grummon. Are you ready to die for General Dynamics, Chevron,
British Petroleum, and the drone makers? Are you willing to lose a leg or
an arm or your mind for Raytheon, BAE and the Koch Brothers? Are you
prepared to spend the rest of your life in a wheel chair for Bechtel SAIC,
General Electric…and rest corporate America including the military.
*Perhaps you don’t think in those terms. Perhaps you think you’re going to
protect the helpless, feed the hungry?* Know that what you are going to
create is more helpless, and you will primarily feed the fat-cats that
profit by these war.
Y*ou’re prepared to go to war to protect your country from attack you
say? * *Know that your country is in less danger of attack from the
outside than the outside that is from your country*.
*“But there are terrorist”, you say. They do have to be stopped. Yes
they do and the first place to stop them is right here. At home. * The
most lethal terrorist technology ever invented is the drone. The
instigator and the leader of Drone development is the United States.
Drones that kill recklessly, randomly, turning everything and everyone in
their path to rubble. Unmanned murderers capable of wiping out hundreds,
thousands, potentially millions in a plane without a pilot that looks like
a toy….or even a bug. Drones that create instant enemies for the US…..that
cause not fewer terrorists around the world, but more. After all, what
have potential victims of drones got to lose?. They see the collateral
damage drones cause. They know there’s no place to hide. We’re going to
get killed anyway, they think. It’s all done by remote control from some
safe office building cozily tucked away in American towns by military
people who play the drone like a video game. Fun for the sender; death for
the unsuspecting receiver. Drones are an exciting new game for the Masters
of War.

*Insert: Keaton Simons sings Bob Dillons Masters of War. *
What happens when sweet, well meaning young people equate patriotism with
blindly obeying their country’s orders them to kill strangers? What
happens when public relations campaigns convince young people that their
slogans are real….*“mess with the best, die like the rest*,” the Marines
tell us. “*cocked locked* *ready to rock*” they brag. They make you feel
good when they call themselves…..the *Marines. the few, .the proud*. It
makes you want to be one of them.
One the young people who confused that public relations slogan with the
truth was Bradley Manning. When he was 18 he joined the Army to fight for
his country in Iraq. What he discovered was the reality of war.
Destabilization, confusion, the anonymity of the killers and their
victims. Killing for its own sake, killing for kicks, the obsessive,
compulsive need to kill that takes over what once were decent, sane young
One day Bradley Manning witnessed one of these mass killings for sport by
American marines in Iraq. They wouldn’t stop. Horrified, Manning reported
this to his superior officer. He was told to keep his mouth shut. He
didn’t. He gave the video of the killings to Wikileaks so the world would
know the truth about war. And now, 3 years later a military court is about
to decide if he will pay for his honesty with his life. After 3 years of
confinement and torture in military prison, he’s finally getting a trial,
and that’s because a million protesting Americans refused to allow him to
be hidden away any longer. Is justice possible for Bradley Manning? So far
he has been refused the right to speak publicly about what he saw or what
he has suffered. In other words he is not allowed to speak in his own
defense. How’s that for honoring our first amendment?
*Farah Almousani,* Campaign organizer for the great organization Courage
to Resist, was present at his last hearing. What is in store for this
genuine hero for peace and sanity? What’s in store for the rest of us who
believe in his cause?

(to listen to this interview and the other interviews with David Swanson
and Tim Carpenter, follow the instructions below.)
*Lila Garrett (Host of CONNECT THE DOTS)*
KPFK 90.7 FM in LA; 98.7 Santa Barbara; 93.7 San Diego;
99.5 China Lake
Airs Mondays from 7AM to 8AM.
To pod cast or download the broadcast use this link:
Each show is on line for three months.
Shelly Rockett
Veterans for Peace
Communications & Outreach Coordinator

See previous numbers of this newsletters and Google Cindy Sheehan Memorial Day.

Charles Pierce.   “It's Memorial Day and the Country Is at War With Itself.”  Esquire, Reader Supported News, May 26, 2014 
Pierce writes: "This is a country now at war with itself. This is a phrase that is generally tossed about when political debate gets too heated. It was popular to say it back in the 1960s, when it seemed quite possibly to be true, with leaders bleeding out on balconies in Memphis or kitchen floors in Los Angeles, and students bleeding out from gunfire on college campuses, and half-baked revolutionary idiots blowing themselves up in Greenwich Village. But this is not the same thing. This is a country at war with itself for profit." 

5-25  Lawlessness, War Crimes
5-25  Nuclear Weapons
5-25  Snowden
5-23  Grassroots Militarism
5-16  Russia/Ukraine
5-15  Conscientious Objection

Please forward my newsletters on your Facebook as an Event.


Contents Memorial Day/Victims of War Newsletter #4 2012
Memorial Day Perversions
Engelhardt, Remembering Memorial Day
Film, Sir, No Sir
Amy Goodman, Stop the Wars
AFSC, No to NATO and War
How Should We Spend Our Money?
IVAW: Fort Hood Standdown
Dudziak, War-Time, Permanent War
From 2011: Veterans for Peace

Contents #5 2013
Gersmehl, Honoring the Killed
David Swanson, Memorial Day
Juan Cole, Thoreau
Cindy Sheehan
Ash, Any Good Wars?
Warren, Remembering Women Vets
Cindy Sheehan, “FreeDumb” 2012
Quigley, Immemorial Day 2012
IVAW 2012
“Remember” Film 2012
Maguire, Just-War Theory
Boggs, Crimes of US Empire
Shaffer’s More Great Antiwar Films


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