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Crossposted from MY LEFT WING

This was previously posted by Damnit Janet -- reprinted with her permission.

I am full of awe and gratitude to Janet for her dedication and tenacity and compassion.

There is still time to get involved and sign the pledge.

Cindy Sheehan, Diane Wilson, Dick Gregory, and CODEPINK Co-Founders Medea Benjamin, Jodie Evans, and Gael Murphy are calling on people around the country to join the Troops Home Fast. This open-ended hunger strike aims to galvanize public attention, invigorate the peace movement, build pressure on elected officials, and get our troops back home FAST! The ongoing fast will generate a lot of attention in Washington, DC, but our fast will only be a success with your local participation. Through local legislative pressure, we hope that a major victory of this fast will be a significant increase in the number of Congresspeople who sign onto legislation calling for a troop withdrawal by the end of the year, and increased local visibility for the anti-war movement. Below are ideas and information to make your participation in the fast a success.

Please help us with publicity by adding a Troops Home Fast button to your local group website Click here to download the button.

Fast on the 4th of July

While many Americans will be expressing their patriotism via barbeques and fireworks, we'll be fasting in memory of the dead and wounded, and calling for the troops to come home from Iraq. If you are willing to commit to fasting for one day or more, please sign up by clicking here

Make your fast public by fasting with a group at a local Independence Day parade. Write on a t-shirt and/or make signs that say "I support the Troops Home Fast!"

Announce your group's fasting plans on July 3rd with a press event. Connect your local events with our fast launch in DC, where we'll march from the Gandhi statue to the White House and hold a "Fast Supper" press conference. We will have a sample press release for you to use soon.

Ignite the spark of peace! Take sparklers to the evening firework show and hand them out to people waiting to see the show. Give them a flyer with info about the ongoing war in Iraq and what they can do to make a difference and get involved in your local peace actions.

Support the Ongoing Fast

Solidarity Fasts and Sit-Ins at Congressional Offices

Historically, public fasts have taken place on the doorsteps of the person or institution that fasters are seeking to change. That's why Cindy Sheehan, Dick Gregory, and Diane Wilson are taking our fast to the White House gates. The Troops Home Fast aims to reach the doorsteps of elected officials around the country. In solidarity with the fasters in DC, you can organize your community to put pressure on your elected officials and demand an end to the war in Iraq.

Legislative Strategy

Our goal is to get Congresspeople to sign onto the most forward-thinking bill to bring our troops home, which has been introduced in both the Senate and the House: Senate Congressional Resolution 93 and House Congressional Resolution 348. These bills demand no permanent bases in Iraq, no US control of the flow of Iraqi oil, and the troops out of Iraq by the end of the year. To read the text of the bills click here

Here's how you can effectively lobby for your Congresspeople to sign onto this bill:

Contact your Congresspeople

Call your Senators and/or Representative and find out if s/he has signed onto this bill. Call Congress at (202) 224-3121 or toll-free at (888) 355-3588 Click here to find out who your Senators or Representative are, or to get local contact information. If your Congressperson has already signed onto the bill, you can thank her or him (and even give a pink badge of courage!). If not, tell the legislative aide that you'd like to urge your Congressperson to sign onto this legislation calling for troop withdrawal. Schedule a meeting to talk about this bill with an aide. Find out where your rep stands on this bill.  To find out if your Representative has supported any legislation to stop the war, and to learn more about legislative strategy from United for Peace and Justice, please click here. This site has talking points, tactics, and detailed info on lobbying elected officials.

(photo taken from CodePinkPortland actions)

Action Plan

Connect with other local peace groups, clergy members, and individuals who you think may be interested in doing a fast action with you. You can connect with other activists doing legislative work by clicking here to register with the United for Peace and Justice Legislative Action Network.When you register, United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ) will share your e-mail with other UFPJ activists in your legislative district and/or state so that you can begin to work together For more outreach ideas, click here.

Meet with your local group and decide on a strategy to get your Congressperson to sign onto the bill. We recommend that local groups fast to pressure Congresspeople to sign onto legislation calling for troop withdrawal from Iraq. You may also decide to do a sit-in or other civil disobedience. If you have questions about your legislative strategy, please contact Sue Udry, legislative campaign coordinator for UFPJ, at

Voters for Peace Pledge

In solidarity with the fasters, you can take action to build momentum for a powerful peace voting block in the upcoming midterm elections by signing onto the Voter's Pledge and collecting signatures for the pledge.

Groups that collect over 500 signatures will receive a special surprise from CODEPINK!

Click here to sign onto the Voter's Pledge.

Click here to download a sign-up sheet that you can print out and take to events.

Thank you! From CodePinkPortland

I am fasting today with Code Pink and everyone else who has signed on. Yeah, it's the 4th of July. Fuck the barbecues -- this is the VERY least I can do. I'm still determined to start a worldwide hunger strike, but until I figure out how to do that (and any advice is welcome), this will have to do.

A single day without food in solidarity with all those who struggle to end this madness.


I just posted this on another thread at MLW, and thought it might have some pertinence here:

I cannot join in the festivities today.

In a way, I'm very grateful to be about to spend some 8 hours on the highway headed back home; it spares me the discomfort of avoiding 4th of July celebrations.

I can't celebrate this country right now. It depresses me to no end to be stuck in this wretched era and feeling so powerless to turn us around from this vile direction in which we're headed. I cannot say, "Yay, America!" I feel like the parent of a murderer might feel; still love the child, but recoil in horror from that child's deeds -- and feel no small measure of guilt and self-recrimination, knowing full well at least SOME of my actions or lack thereof must have contributed, in however small a way, to the child's dissolution.

I am seeing a not-unexpected number of responses dismissing the idea that joining a hunger strike for one day can possibly do any good. I totally get that, I do.

But it still seems to me that if this universe isn't set up to receive any action, however small, taken in honour of the good and the decent, in protest of the evil and the cruel -- then this universe is probably a horrible joke. And that, I cannot accept.

So today, I fast for peace. And soon, I may come to you and ask you to join in a longer hunger strike -- perhaps we can build it into a movement that will not be ignored by the corporate mouthpieces of the Bush Regime and the pathetically weakened and muted remaining elements of the Fourth Estate.

No fireworks or barbecues for me today. It would be like throwing a birthday party, complete with cake and ice cream and presents, for a child who has behaved very, very badly. And yes, it hurts me far more than it hurts the child -- hell, the recalcitrant child, as embodied by the Bush Regime and its remaining supporters, won't even notice I've denied them my participation in their vulgar celebration.

But I will.

Originally posted to My Left Wing on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 10:32 AM PDT.


Will you hunger strike today with us?

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| 98 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Believe me... (31+ / 0-)

    I've struggled with wondering if any action like this can possibly do any good...

    and when I feel the doubt filling me up, I remember that it was the cumulative effect of ALL the protests against Vietnam that ultimately helped end THAT particular wrongheaded war -- and I have to believe that every action taken against THIS nightmarish evil occupation will do the same, over time.

    •  I do think these have an effect (9+ / 0-)

      Even on the people who rail against them.  The Ganhdi quote was very appropriate -- it's only a "vigorous pacifism" that leads to victory.

      Theobromine -- does that come in chocolate?

      by Mark Sumner on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 10:34:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Let's add this Vonnegut piece to the mix: (14+ / 0-)

        From Cat's Cradle:

        "We are gathered here, friends," he said, "to honor lo Hoon-year Mora-toorz tut Zamoo-cratz-ya, children dead, all dead, all murdered in war. It is customary on days like this to call such lost children men. I am unable to call them men for this simple reason: that in the same war in which lo Hoon-year Mora-toorz tut Zamoo-cratz-ya died, my own son died.

        "My soul insists that I mourn not a man but a child.

        "I do not say that children at war do not die like men, if they have to die. To their everlasting honor and our everlasting shame, they do die like men, thus making possible the manly jubilation of patriotic holidays.

        "But they are murdered children all the same.

        "And I propose to you that if we are to pay our sincere respects to the hundred lost children of San Lorenzo, that we might best spend the day despising what killed them; which is to say, the stupidity and viciousness of all mankind.

        "Perhaps, when we remember wars, we should take off our clothes and paint ourselves blue and go on all fours all day long and grunt like pigs. That would surely be more appropriate than noble oratory and shows of flags and well-oiled guns.

        "I do not mean to be ungrateful for the fine, martial show we are about to see – and a thrilling show it really will be..."

        He looked each of us in the eye, and then he commented very softly, throwing it away, "And hooray I say for thrilling shows."

        We had to strain our ears to hear what Minton said next.

        "But if today is really in honor of a hundred children murdered in war," he said, "is today a day for a thrilling show?

        "The answer is yes, on one condition: that we, the celebrants are working consciously and tirelessly to reduce the stupidity and viciousness of ourselves and all mankind."

        Thanks to The Rude Pundit for reminding me of it today.

      •  Ghandi advocated hunger strikes (5+ / 0-)

        only when you want to persuade your political allies. He thought it was useless against political adversaries who prefer that you die, whether of starvation or bullets.

        •  It's not the adversaries who matter... (3+ / 0-)

          it's the vast undecided middle who want to think of themselves as decent people, people who tentatively would like to extend the caring they show for their own children and families to a larger world.

          That was the dream present at the founding of our nation, admittedly under some conditions (resources, isolation, weakened occupants) initially favorable.

          Now, under difficult conditions, is our intention truly tested.

          It is up to each individual to respond to the call of Conscience in the way he/she can best live with.

          "Must the citizen ever for a moment, or in the least degree, resign his conscience to the legislator? Why has every man a conscience, then? I think that we should be men first, and subjects afterward. It is not desirable to cultivate a respect for the law, so much as for the right. The only obligation which I have a right to assume is to do at any time what I think right."

          If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

          by HenryDavid on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:33:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Whether or not the effect is obvious (8+ / 0-)

      actions like this surely add to the collective good of the people - imagine an elaborate scorecard for humanity, this adds big pink points in the "we fucking tried" column. Thank you.

      •  'We tried' (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Yes, that counts for something.

        But, when it comes to stopping the rape and murder of children in our world by those claiming to wear the mantle of "Liberty", I'm from the Vince Lombardi school of international justice.

        We owe it to them to figure out how to win.

        Just as you would do for your own child, "winning is the only thing" that matters.

        If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

        by HenryDavid on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:37:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I completely agree. The (7+ / 0-)

      cumulative effect of the protests over Viet Nam gave meaning to the small single efforts.

    •  I don't think a fast today would work (4+ / 0-)

      Only because it wasn't a big campaign that started being pushed a month or so ago.  If you fast, who will know?  It won't make the news, it won't reach the offices of politicians, and it just becomes a thing you do for yourself.  That's fine if that's what you want to do, but it doesn't help end the war, in my opinion.  I support the spirit of the fast, but do not believe that it would accomplish anything.

    •  of course it does good (4+ / 0-)

      fasting cleans the system out and clears the head!  the we go forth and bring it on with the republicans!

      weather forecast

      The palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. - Paine

      by Cedwyn on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:21:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hey there Cedwin! :) (5+ / 0-)

        If you're in town today... some will be at the Salmon Street fountain fasting in public.

        "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

        by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:52:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  woweez! (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Damnit Janet, JPete

          mebbe i should get on down there.  what time?

          weather forecast

          The palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. - Paine

          by Cedwyn on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 01:10:59 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  CedwYn :) (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Cedwyn, Wbythebay

            From CodePink Portland

            TROOPS HOME FAST July 4th 11 am, Salmon Street Fountain
            In solidarity and in memory of the dead and wounded, CODEPINK Portland announces the Troops Home Fast kickoff!

            This will be on the last day of the Waterfront Blues Festival. We need volunteers to fast on this day at the festival. We'd like to stay as long as possible, so we can do this in shifts on the first day. We hope to have support from some of the performers on the stages.

            We are planning to have a presence at the Salmon Street Fountain for the remainder of that week, so if you can't do the 4th, consider one of the other days. Also consider being part of the support team - be available with water, juice, moral support. We'll have handouts and some signs for the fasting site.

            We're still working on the details for the remainder of the months.
            If you can do a day or a week or any time at all please contact us at For more information on the national campaign, check out

            "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

            by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 01:12:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Thank you for this diary... (0+ / 0-)
  •  Beautiful. I'm speechless (7+ / 0-)

    This needs to be seen by all. Thanks MSOC. Recommended!

  •  Well-intentioned, but... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Patriot for Al Gore, LibChicAZ

    ...I just can't imagine how fasting will change anything at all.  

    •  Gandhi would also be (5+ / 0-)

      marching to the sea, to make the salt forbidden by the British occupiers.

      And distributing spinning wheels, to make the cloth whose manufacture was forbidden by the occupiers.

      Direct Action.

      Direct Action.

      Direct Action.

      Consequences not solely directed at oneself, even if in symbolic suffering in sympathy with those truly oppressed, but CONSEQUENCES AIMED AT THE OPPRESSORS, that remove the Power they use to do the Evil we lament.

      If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

      by HenryDavid on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:41:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well, to each their own... (5+ / 0-)

    Self-starvation doesn't exactly send a message of hope, but that's just my opinion.

    Does this signature make my ass look big?

    by Page van der Linden on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 10:49:06 AM PDT

  •  New Link (22+ / 0-)

    that wasn't available at the time of my initial action alert.

    Solidarity Actions on that same page is info on how to prepare for a fast. As well as the history of fasting.

    Howard Zinn is fasting with us today. Amongst many many others.

    Some of my friends are taking the day off and "doing some much needed shopping." Some of my friends are having bbqs today. Some have even invited me, thinking that I'll change my mind... as if  this day is just about eating... To me it's about Independence and this country is by no means free.

    I get flack for marching, protesting, attending vigils, speeches... Some say it's meaningless. Some say I'm just a silly woman with a neon pink shirt and handmade signs. Some say it won't make a difference. But me NOT doing anything surely won't make a difference. My activism affects me and my famimly. My not doing anything definitely would affect me and my kids. So I prefer to do something. It's not always rational, logical, and with CodePink, you can bet your ass it's always "way out there"... but it helps me feel like a free soul. It's gets me out of my cage of apathy and dispair.

    I am just one person. Doing what I can. What I do may not be best for others. They have their own talents and ways... and issues. We are complimenting what others are doing.

    But some of my friends... like BostonJoe are protesting at a 4th of July parade with others. Some are reading the Constitution to their children. Some are writing out angry LTE's.  It's not going to stop the killing in Iraq and all over the globe... but it will a START to a better path towards peace.

    I want this Regime to end and held up for war crimes. The best way for me, today, to try to reach that is to make critical choices in how I live and raise my family.  To be active in the anti-war movement and support the Peacemakers.

    I'm hungry for and end... as well as a start.

    "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

    by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 10:50:36 AM PDT

  •  4th of July (0+ / 0-)

    and no BBQ?  That IS one hell of a sacrifice.  

    Republican recruitment for the 82nd Chairborne at an all-time high...

    by topicalstorm on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 10:54:21 AM PDT

  •  Has to start somewhere (7+ / 0-)

    I remember seeing snips of the protest from Berkeley on the evening news.  What started there spread to other college campuses around the country.  Someone from one college would mail a newsletter to a person on another campus and we would follow their lead.  I remember the day we had our first sit-in.  We had threats of being expelled and all that crap.  When the professors joined us, the Dean gave up fighting it.  

    What people today don't realize, one day with thousands marching doesn't work.  You have to keep at it day in and day out.  I remember the people who were camped out across from the White House during Vietnam.  There were people and tents all around.  The movement may have started out with the hippie flower children, but the respectable people (priest, nuns, doctors, lawyers and everyday people) slowly joined with us.

    A protest is a commitment that takes more than a day or two.  You just have to keep on trying.

  •  How about about a Dirty Bomb in the Green Zone? (0+ / 0-)

    OK, here's a quiz. How soon will we leave Iraq if a Dirty Bomb is exploded in or near the Green Zone? I'll make it easy:
    a) Ten Days

    b) Ten Hours

    c) Ten minutes

    Not to give anybody any ideas, but in this 4th Generation War, all is fair. And, you all know it's coming, right?

    Iraq is Arabic for Viet Nam.

    by sen bob on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:02:48 AM PDT

    •  Um... (6+ / 0-)

      I'm for peace, not more death and destruction.

      I don't believe in violence as a solution to violence.

      I'm not a pacifist -- I WOULD resort to violence if there were no other imaginable or viable option... But I think people who blow other people up to make a point about how wrong it is to blow people up... are fucking stupid.

      I know he's a flawed guy, but in his book, Stupid White Men, Michael Moore had some REALLY thought-provoking suggestions for the Palestinians as to how they might affect the change they want -- and none of them included violence. Among them: a total strike -- every Palestinian should lie down in the middle of the Gaza Strip and refuse to move. Or stop going to work in Israel -- cut off their cheap labour. The suggestions were all terrific, but they require massive mobilisation -- the cooperation of EVERYONE.

      I'm trying to imagine how to get millions of people to do one thing at the same time for a long tie, all in protest of this fucjing war. Hunger strike? Work strike? I don't know yet -- but surely the people of this world who all want peace, who want the occupation of Iraq to end, the hideous killings and rapes in Sudan to end -- surely we would all agree to do one thing simultaneously, if only we could organise and publicise it properly?

      I don't know. I'm just spitballing, here...

      •  DEAR MARY (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Maryscott OConnor, Linda Milazzo


        Advocate the wearing of a black ARMBAND with a white tag attached to the armband with the number
        2,550 attached to the white tag. And change the number every month as the casualties mount.

        The proper place to start this movement would be by the Democrats in the Congress. Write to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid and see if they will go along by presenting the idea to the other Democrats.

  •  Fasters being arrested in DC (10+ / 0-)

    photos and updates

    They're arresting the fasters in DC. So far a 70 yr old Granny for Peace...

    "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

    by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:15:08 AM PDT

  •  Is a Beer Fast For Peace OK? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peace voter, BarbinMD

    Just this once?

  •  And what would be the FASTEST way to end the war? (4+ / 0-)

    End our daily co-operation with it.

    How many would it take?  How much?

    Do you feel helpless?

    Imagine how helpless Ameer Qasim Hamza felt when she heard her door being kicked down.

    If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

    by HenryDavid on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:24:58 AM PDT

  •  hypoglycemia prevents me from joining (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Maryscott OConnor, Wbythebay

    but i think it's a great idea

    i don't think it will accomplish anything in itself BUT i do think it sets the proper groundwork for actions which will accomplish a lot

    there's something about this i like quite a lot ...

  •  What Does It Take For Supporters Of This War... (7+ / 0-)

    To Admit Its Blood Flows Through THEIR Hands?

    Over the past few weeks, five despicable war crimes are purported to have been committed by American troops. Each involves the deliberate brutal murder of innocent Iraqis. The latest, and perhaps most shocking, involves 21 year old former soldier, Steven E. Green, accused of the rape and murder of a young woman and the slaughter of her family, which included a five year old girl.

    Here are a few questions for YOU SUPPORTERS OF THE WAR ON IRAQ?

    If these allegations are true.... would 21 year old Steven Green have committed similar atrocities at home had he not gone to fight YOUR WAR? Had he demonstrated aberrant behavior prior to fighting YOUR WAR, or did YOUR WAR drive him so far afield that he lost any sense of humanity? Has YOUR WAR made him criminally insane?

    Did the neighbors and families of the Marines accused of killing 24 unarmed Iraqis fear these men prior to their deployment to Iraq? Or is YOUR WAR so horrific that formerly gentle and caring young men became killing machines who massacred innocent women and children? If these allegations are true... has YOUR WAR turned them all into psychopaths?

    Because of YOUR egos, YOUR greed and YOUR inhumanity, this genocide continues. EVERY ONE OF YOU HAS BLOOD ON YOUR HANDS and bears responsibility for the deaths of the innocent Iraqis, and the death of the innocence of the youths who fight YOUR WAR.


  •  I appreciate hunger strikers' enthusiasm (0+ / 0-)

    But Ghandi seemed willing to starve to death.  Go ahead. Enjoy some granola, all snark aside.

  •  Every little bit helps (6+ / 0-)

    Protest actions are cumulative. The more of them there are, the greater the movement becomes. Even a one-day fast makes a difference. I wish I could join you, but hypoglycemia suggests I don't. But I applaud you and everyone who is fasting for peace.

    This war has got to end. Now. Not tomorrow, not next month, not next year, but now.

    I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

    by eugene on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:39:23 AM PDT

  •  I might do it later, but not today (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BarbinMD, Patriot for Al Gore, lgmcp

    Today I celebrate.

    I celebrate our country's independence, in homage to those who risked, and often gave, their lives so that we can have the freedoms that we enjoy today.

    I'm a patriot.  I love this country dearly, and I'm proud to say it.

    It's because I'm a patriot that I want things to change. I want to preserve what we have and work towards a better expression of our ideals.

    I don't think it's wise to mix the hunger strike with the Fourth of July.

    Just my two cents. - a journal of music + the arts + writing

    by hrh on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:42:08 AM PDT

    •  I'd be able to celebrate open-heartedly ... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Damnit Janet, grayscale, Wbythebay if only the celebrations were less focused on the military aspect of America's history, a good portion of which was motivated by greed.

      I'd also like to see patriots like Frederick Douglass, Osceola, Susan B. Anthony, Bill Haywood, Gene McCarthy and a host of others get their due alongside the slave-owning, Indian-hating, war-mongers who absorb so much of our attention on this holiday.

      •  I think more of the Founding Fathers (0+ / 0-)

        on this day since it's the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

        As Jefferson wrote in 1826:

        May it be to the world what I believe it will be, (to some parts sooner, to others later, but finally to all), the Signal of arousing men to burst the chains, under which monkish ignorance and superstition had persuaded them to bind themselves, and to assume the blessings and security of self government. That form which we have substituted restores the free right to the unbounded exercise of reason and freedom of opinion. All eyes are opened, or opening to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately, by the grace of god. These are grounds of hope for others. For ourselves, let the annual return of this day forever refresh our recollections of these rights, and an undiminished devotion to them. ...

        Letter to Roger C. Weightman from Thomas Jefferson, June 24, 1826 - a journal of music + the arts + writing

        by hrh on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 08:39:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  If it brings a measure of peace... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Linda Milazzo

    ...satisfaction or hope to people, I say more power to them.  

    Personally?  It reminds me of when my mother used to tell me to "clean my plate because there are children starving in Asia."  I always asked how my eating would help them...and in this case, I don't believe not eating will accomplish anything.  Well, unless you make a donation of what you would have eaten or spent on food to a food bank, homeless shelter, etc.

    Arrogant lips are unsuited to a fool-- how much worse lying lips to a ruler - Proverbs 17:7

    by Barbara Morrill on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:47:20 AM PDT

    •  A donation's a good idea... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      peace voter, Damnit Janet

      particularly when paired with personal sacrifice to show your level of commitment.  

      Our military is dying and our military is killing.  When they die they sacrifice their lives.  When they kill they sacrifice their humanity.

      We should all make whatever sacrifice is needed to bring this war to an end.   My CodePINK Sisters are putting their freedom and their health on the line... not just today but for days to come.  

      For those of us who couldn't join them in DC, let's do all we can from wherever we are to support their commitment to our cause.

      Go Sisters!!  Go!!

  •  Immediate withdrawl of troops (0+ / 0-)

    would put the Middle East in great jeopardy of falling apart. Though I am totally opposed to the pretext for war, I think leaving would be worse betrayal of the Iraqi's.

    I would prefer a strategy that actually helps the people of Iraq. Like relieving Rummy of command, and putting some minds together on how to turn the page on Iraq, without blowing up the Middle East.

    I think the best idea is to start with Israel. They would not be the only country in the Middle East that has nuclear weapons. How about if they dispose of some as a gesture towards peace.

    Overthrow the Government ~Vote~

    by missliberties on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:52:57 AM PDT

    •  I think it's arrogant of our Govt to think (9+ / 0-)

      that the Iraqi's are incapable of rebuilding what we blow the shit out of.

      What betrayal?

      If you called for a plumber to repair a badly clogged toilet that making your life miserable... and after THREE YEARS the plumber made it worse, ruined your house and your lawn, and in frustration shot both your children in the head...

      Would you WANT that plumber to remain till he finished 'the job'?

      No, Saddam isn't a clogged toilet... but I find it arrogant of our govt and Americans to think that we need to stay the course and fix what we broke.

      Listen to the Iraqi people. They want us OUT.

      "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

      by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:58:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Then how many more troops (3+ / 0-)

      should be killed and how many more Iraqis should be killed before you believe it's a good time to leave?

      Rumsfeld should be removed.  Of course.  And Israel should relinquish OUR nuclear weapons that we've placed on their land.  Of course.

      But show some respect for people whose culture is centuries older than ours.  Don't fall prey to American exceptionalism.  We've destroyed their nation and we're destroying our own.  

      Why would our continued presence provide a solution to a problem we caused?

  •  The root of the problem (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ". . . all through history the way of truth and love have always won"

    how many people really believe that today?

    But if you don't, what are you celebrating today anyway?  Isn't that in large part the dream this country was made of?

    If we are to celebrate today, it is that which we celebrate.

  •  Vietnam anti-war pressure accelerated (10+ / 0-)

    when we adopted a monthly schedule of Moratorium actions, commencing with October 15, 1969.

    It was known from that day onward that we would assemble, march, teach-in, skip classes, hold meetings at work: same day, each month.

    THIS IS THE MINIMUM that we must do.

    July 15th.  

    August 15th.  

    September 15th.  

    October 15th

    November 15th

    December 15th...

    The same drumbeat of dates that began to drive Nixon mad in 1969, and drove him to Watergate and Impeachment.

    Every campus, every workplace, every home.

    Teach-ins, sit-ins, discussion groups, voter registration parties.  Whatever your creative imagination can offer.  

    "End the War.  Stop the Coup."

    A peaceful re-birth for our national spirit out of a miasma of shame.

    One consistent day per month, never too far ahead in time, nor too far behind in memory.  Not organized by any feuding committee of national groups and tendencies, but every local group doing its part.

    No gigantic airfare bills flying to DC or NYC or LA, no searching desperately for hotels, etc etc.  No worrying about the logistics, or the press' headcount.  Just showing up in your hometown, your county, your Congressional District (or the swing District nextdoor ;) ).  

    Same day each month, same idea, until it's over.

    DAMMIT!  We are ALREADY A MAJORITY!  How much easier could this be made for us????????

    The key thing being the knowing that, all across the land, people just like you are doing the same.

    And they will next month, and the month after.

    Create ANTICIPATION.  Build MOMENTUM.  Keep it SIMPLE.

    Until everyone knows the upcoming date -- the 15th -- and expects the action.  Only question becoming "What will they do this month?!?"

    There you have your Velvet Revolution.

    Until one day, the President's (and vice-President's) announcements of their resignations seem almost an afterthought on the news broadcasts.

    We are so over them, aren't we.

    If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

    by HenryDavid on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 11:57:29 AM PDT

    •  well put, and now you are talking.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades

      with that sort of mobilization and organization, I would be much more inclined to participate--and I would also be much more hopeful about the cumulative effect.

      I am against the war and wish we'd never gone in there--but incidentally, i also have two people I very much respect who would agree with the poster above that "total pull-out now would be bad for the iraqis/the middle east, etc." just as an aside....I think some more info about how to talk to the above people is helpful.....cause if me, a left wing liberal wonk, have two other (relatively) left wing liberals who have the opinion above--then LOTS of other people are in the same boat. and exploring that meme is I think an important part of the needed work to end this war, IMHO.

      back to the topic, why not ask people, if they can't do anything else to fast on every 15th of every month....

      and Henry David I'll be looking for more comments/more info from you.... in general! <grin>


      To be, rather than to seem.--NC State Motto

      by make a difference on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 12:24:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thanks for the reminder. It's ... (5+ / 0-)

      ...worth remembering, as you point out, that the antiwar movement of the '60s - which, by the way, started well before 1969 - wasn't just about demonstrations and vigils. We did anti-draft work, we worked with veterans to get them jobs and counseling, we campaigned for antiwar politicians, we constantly constantly constantly engaged in one-on-one conversations to convince people the war was wrong and that they should join in opposing it.

      The luxury now is that we can look back on the mistakes we made and correct some of them. One of those was not speaking up more loudly than we did against those who wanted the antiwar movement to become violent (many of those who did so were agents provocateurs eager to bring the antiwar movement into disrepute.

      •  'DECLARE the DATE': Strengths and Corrections (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        What I'm going for here is my memory of the strength of the expectation -- the sense of inevitability -- that came with adopting that regularity of actions, in October and November of 1969.

        There were national actions (November, May?), but it was mainly the local focus that allowed the creativity of millions to leap out at the warmakers.

        We are older -- much older -- and way more dispersed, and harder to herd (than cats, even) these days.

        That is why I suspect that the most we are going to be able to "organize" is to "Declare the Date,"  and then let people take it from there.

        It's sort of like the sense of possibility we have here on the Web, with the sub-community of DailyKos, but then every good thing is created by the people who actually show up each day.

        Trying to structure much more, from any central source, is asking for dispersion to prevail.  I hate to admit it, but a lot of us are possessed strongly by the "Not Invented Here" ego.  Aren't we?

        The closer to home each idea is fomented ;) the better it will come off.  Agree?

        Mistakes & Corrections:

        We had only lost King in the year before 1969 -- most of us were still angry, and many were unbalanced, lives were in chaos.

        There were, as I call them, on each campus, the "Junior Commissars".  The guys who'd read Lenin and Trotsky and Mao and wanted the romance of becoming the next revolutionary heroes.

        Their average age was, I suspect, 22.

        Now, with the benefit of hindsight, you and I know how incredibly powerful the nonviolent legacy of King (and Gandhi) is.  His voice still brings tears, big choking spasm type reaction at my/our loss.

        The sheer efficiency of mobilizing millions in the safe numbers of nonviolent action is our best hope for self-rescue today.

        The speaking against violence was not our priority then except as comparing it symptomatically to the violence being brought home from Vietnam.  Same violence, different battlefield.

        (And allowing the administration to divert us, by defining an overarching agenda of self-policing, when we had enough to deal with in thwarting America's violent nature and acts -- remember, Goodman, Schwerner, and Chaney were still fresh in mind -- seemed to me worth trying to avoid.)

        As a C.O., I knew where I stood, on both fields.  My consistent position allowed me to speak to everyone involved.  I attempted to draw as many fellow revolutionaries in that direction as possible.

        Several times, I had transcendant experiences of the power of nonviolence -- satyagraha -- reaching into the hearts of "adversaries", and promising a world truly worth living in after the abandonment of war as a supposed means to "good" ends...

        If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

        by HenryDavid on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 03:04:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Fasting can mean a lot of things... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Maryscott OConnor, grayscale

    to different people. I know some folks joining this fast who have been active with Cindy at various events and are planning to have a diet of juice or something akin to maple syrup and water.

  •  it is effective if it steels your will (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Maryscott OConnor, stevej

    if it builds some bonds, or if it wakes even one onlooker up to rethinking this whole mess. i personally think that protest will not be effective until it becomes a serious nuisance to the functioning of the system as a whole. not in terms of public exposure, mind you, but really inconveniencing the machine itself. the trick, however, is doing that in a way that does not bother bystanders to the point where they side with the machine itself.

    i do not think that a hunger strike, even to death, will stop this war, but it is a damn sight better than doing nothing at all, maryscott, and it may yet have consequences unforseen down the road, in renewed personal committment or in some person that gets inspired by it. remember that cindy sheehan was just some grieving mother posting at 3am here on dKos the weekend before she decided to camp out in crawford. in that evening of conversation with her, alone here one sleepless night, i watched her steel her will for the road ahead, and was not surprised to see what she managed to accomplish short of that goal.

    she has not accomplished her ultimate goal, but she has made some ripples. while i voted no in your poll, i think it is good that you are willing to make some ripples, maryscott. i don't know what will end this thing, in the end (i do not believe, for the record, that the vietnam protests were close to the deciding factor in vietnam, so much as desertion, the threat of violent resistance, and a military that had decided that it wasn't a war worth continuing), but i know that refusing to do anything won't help either.

    you must do what you feel is right. in the end, that's all we've got.

    crimson gates reek with meat and wine/while on the streets, bones of the frozen dead -du fu (712-770)

    by wu ming on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 12:05:21 PM PDT

  •  Jeez (0+ / 0-)

    look at all the fat people who said "No" in the poll! Damn it, you can eat double tomorrow!! Not sure if that's how Gandhi did it, but you can try...

  •  I think what some fail to realize (4+ / 0-)

    is that this will be followed up with action.

    There will be a week of civil disobedience if the fasters' demands are not met.

       * The withdrawal of all U.S. from Iraq;
       * No permanent bases in Iraq;
       * A commitment to fund a massive reconstruction effort but with funds going to Iraqi, not U.S., contractors.

    For some this time of fasting will be empowering to them to continue to do what needs to be done daily to end this illegal occupation in Iraq and the illegal occupation of our White House.

    "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

    by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 12:43:02 PM PDT

    •  civil disobedience (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Linda Milazzo

      i'm way more interested in participating in civil disobedience than I am in fasting (not because I'm fat or not willing to give up food--more because I think civil disobedience is far more effective.)

      so, can you tell us more without giving away the farm? or what you'd like people do do besides fast?

      I will also check out the war resistance link henry david posted above...


      To be, rather than to seem.--NC State Motto

      by make a difference on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 12:55:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    Recommended by:
    grayscale, Linda Milazzo

    Start wearing a black armband with a white tag attached on which to stamp 2,550 on it, and as the casualties mount change the number accordingly.

    The proper place to start this movement would be with the Democrats in Congress and therefore let's start the ball rolling by writing to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid and asking them to present the idea to their colleagues.


  •  MMmm mmmm... (1+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Hidden by:

    These BBQ burgers sure are going well with my cold beer.

    Kos: "I was for Hackett before I was against him."

    by Irrelevant Prolixity on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 01:19:30 PM PDT

    •  to troll rate or not troll rate... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Linda Milazzo

      that is the question. Is it better to just troll rate you away or take up arms and argue with you and you tell us we have no sense of humor? Fuck it, here is a troll rating, enjoy your burger.

      absolute freedom for one individual undoubtedly limits the freedom of another.

      by jbou on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 01:28:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Time to close camp people (0+ / 0-)

    I just heard that some lady at is fasting for one day until we agree to let Lieberman stay in the Senate.

    And well, we really have no choice, do we?

    Damn that crafty woman and her not-pointless not-attention seeking stunts!

    Kos: "I was for Hackett before I was against him."

    by Irrelevant Prolixity on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 01:26:42 PM PDT

  •  UPDATE FROM CODEPINK (4:20 DC time) (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Damnit Janet, Wbythebay

    as told by Tiffany Burns... our Los Angeles CodePINK coordinator who works closely with Cindy...

    So far two Grannys have been arrested for trying to walk in the parade.  No one else has been arrested... not Cindy or any other PINKS.

    CodePINK was permitted to march at the back of the parade.

    The weather's been beautiful and the crowd has been appreciative.  Our CodePINK Sisters have been fasting and singing in spite of the heat.


  •  North Korea fired three missiles (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peace voter

    this afternoon.  Hang on to our planet, my friends.  Bush is as crazy as Kim Jong il (spelling?).

    Why is everyone in power so freaking insane!!??

  •  Hunger strikes and fasting (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Maryscott OConnor

    I'm not sure I am fond of moving from the one to the other as if they were the same sort of thing. They're fundamentally different.

    A fast is when you go without food for a certain period of time to make a symbolic protest against something or other. It starts, probably not much happens, and then it stops, and you've made your point. Well and good. Hopefully, if you do it well, it is one small step in a greater movement that achieves a good deal.

    A hunger strike is when you go without food so that you may die, unless something or other is done. A hunger strike is not primarily symbolic - it is about presenting the state with the realisation that the costs to them of your death outweigh the costs to them of backing down. You do not engage in a hunger strike unless you are actually prepared to die, because it's usually unlikely that your death really will appear all that costly to them. I'm quite sure that Gandhi was prepared to die. I know that Bobby Sands was prepared to die. I have my doubts about the CodePink people.  You simply do not start a hunger strike unless you have written your will and said goodbye to the world and those you love. Otherwise, you fail.

    On a similar note, there is no such thing as a worldwide hunger strike, because it is next to impossible to organise and mobilise a significant mass of people who would be willing to die. Even if you were to start it, after a few deaths here and there, if it got to that, the effort would collapse, and you are left with two things: a couple of corpses and a massive dispiriting failure, neither of which are particularly attractive. Moreover, in the context of a mass hunger strike, the costs to the state of a few anonymous deaths are really quite minimal.

    An intermittent mass fast, on the other hand, could be something, particularly if it were an ongoing event, such as HenryDavid suggested - every 15th of the month -- or rather every 20th, to mark the start of the invasion in March 2003.  This is something that could very well be sustainable, because it does not require extraordinary sacrifice on the part of its participants, and because it is something that a mass of people could be expected to join over time. But organisation is absolutely key here - the point of such a fast is not that a few people go without food and make a point. The point of such a fast is to create momentum in an ongoing campaign - in which case you advertise it well beforehand and make sure you have the cooperation of a variety of groups across civil society - and moreover, link it to a number of activities that people drawn into the movement can take up at the same time. Otherwise it is a well-meaning waste of time that will serve to dispirit rather than galvanise.

    Gandhi is better to read on this point than someone like Thoreau (sorry HenryDavid - but perhaps you can correct me) because Gandhi was fully aware that his pacifism and other actions were never simply about his own purity or integrity - it being the least he could do, so to speak - but were always part of a broader form of collective action. Gandhi didn't want to be pure, or be able to say on his death bed that he had done all he could in all good conscience. He wanted to get the British out of India, and on that score he was a bloody good political strategist. The doctrine of the sword that Gandhi opposed was not that might makes right; where non-violence could be presented as morally superior. Of course it is that, but the deeper point is that violence does not amount to might in the first place. Will is stronger, politically stronger, than violence. Or at least it can be, and the trick is not simply to express it, but to express it in a manner that manifests that might. Satyagraha is a doctrine for hard-core realists, not purists, ascetics, or those concerned about the state of their consciences.

    Always subordinate the symbolic to the pragmatic.

    •  Not certain I understand... (0+ / 0-)

      your point.  I don't believe anyone has used the words hunger strike.  Although it's possible someone did and I overlooked it.

      If you're making a point solely for semantic intent... then I have to disagree with your singular definition of "fast"... which is not necessarily a form of protest, but often a method of purification, cleansing, renewal and revelation.

      Thank you for your well stated observation of Gandhi's intent and the fact that there exists a philosophical and literary difference between Gandhi and Thoreaux.

      But pertaining to the efforts of those who are fasting for peace today and beyond...  

      You are correct...  To my knowledge no people fasting today and beyond are willing to give up their lives in this process... and for good reason:  Those who are fasting do much good while alive... and energetically plan to continue.

      •  Fasting (0+ / 0-)

        ... oh sure, it can be done for other reasons too, but I meant in a political context.

        The term "hunger strike" is used a couple of time in the original diary. In one sense, I am making a semantic point, that we should be clear in the concepts we use. But semantic points are not always trivial, as we can sometimes avoid making substantive mistakes if we keep things conceptually clear. For instance, the idea of an open-ended hunger-strike makes sense if what you are talking about is indeed a hunger strike that could end either way, but makes little sense if what you are talking about is a fast that you know must be limited in duration. And these people are fasting, albeit perhaps some for longer than others.

        •  I didn't see the reference to hunger strike... (0+ / 0-)

          and agree with the need for clarity.  Absolutely.  But this is definitely a fast.  

          I appreciate your observations.

          •  Hunger strike: (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Damnit Janet

            In the first paragraph after the fold:

            "Cindy Sheehan, Diane Wilson, Dick Gregory, and CODEPINK Co-Founders Medea Benjamin, Jodie Evans, and Gael Murphy are calling on people around the country to join the Troops Home Fast. This open-ended hunger strike aims to galvanize public attention, invigorate the peace movement, build pressure on elected officials, and get our troops back home FAST!"

            and also MSOC says:

            "I am fasting today with Code Pink and everyone else who has signed on. Yeah, it's the 4th of July. Fuck the barbecues -- this is the VERY least I can do. I'm still determined to start a worldwide hunger strike, but until I figure out how to do that (and any advice is welcome), this will have to do."

            and then again in the update.

            The point about making the correction, even if it is essentially semantic, is that the terms you use to get people on board a movement are important. Given what it means, and what it connotes, "hunger strike" is not going to do that, but "fast" has a much better chance.

            •  Some are going on a hunger strike (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              peace voter

              a few have said they will won't eat till the demands are met.  Diane Wilson for one.

              The reason it's open ended it give others a chance to prepare, begin with they can.  

              Some will only be fasting in public for a few days.

              Others will step in to fast in public near the end.

              "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

              by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 04:44:14 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Didn't know that.... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                peace voter

                Everyone I know has a targeted end date.  I didn't know Diane's was open-ended.  

                She's unbelievable!!

              •  If Diane Wilson (0+ / 0-)

                ... has said goodbye to the world and is quite prepared to die, then she is on a hunger strike. I have my doubts, however, whether that is quite the case, no matter what she may say now. I also have doubts, great ones, whether anyone in power is going to take this seriously as a real hunger strike.

                I would also not support it if it were the case that this was a real hunger strike since I do not think her dying would be a particularly productive thing to occur. Frankly, not very many people would notice, or care, and it would not help build any type of anti-war movement.

                A hunger strike is a weapon of last resort for individuals in absolutely urgent circumstances. You do not do it unless you mean to go through with it, otherwise it utterly undermines the credibility of what you are attempting to do.

                •  I think people would notice and care (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  peace voter, Damnit Janet

                  but I do agree it would be hard to reconcile such a great loss to those who know her and love her.  She's the mother of five.

                  •  Mother of five (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Damnit Janet

                    ... then that would be especially difficult.

                    It would be a terrible waste, and it would do no more good than any one of the deaths in Iraq.

                    Personally, it is not so much dying that particularly scares me, but dying without the hope that one's death makes a difference.

                •  Diane (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Linda Milazzo

                  not too long ago was released from a texas jail for holding a sign in front of Dick Cheney. She was there for months.  

                  She's an incredible, "Unreasonable" woman.

                  She said she'd do it, I have no reason to think she won't.

                  She has more credibility with me than ANYONE in office. Ack, however that's not saying much... let me rephrase it.. I have no reason to doubt her. I will not judge her, only try to support her and others.  

                  "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

                  by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 05:30:19 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That's brilliant, Damnit!! (0+ / 0-)
                  •  Credibility (0+ / 0-)

                    I'm sure she has more credibility than any Republican I'm ever likely to meet.

                    Moreover, I'm very much in favour of people being unreasonable, since the reasonable never did much to shift history forward.

                    But dying, at this point, would not be a worthwhile sacrifice. As such, she should not go through with a hunger strike. A fast maybe, even a long one, but not a hunger strike. Not unless very serious deliberations have been undertaken about the likely consequences of her death, in particular whether that would undermine the adminstration or, more likely as I fear, the anti-war movement, such as it is. Is it more likely that the public would come to see this as the death of a crazy old person from Texas, or the inexorable outcome of the Bush Administration's warmongering? Would it turn people against the war, or discredit the left and make the task of controlling mainstream opinion even more difficult?

                    It's very brave, and I think people are a little in awe of that bravery. But that's precisely the reason why she should be challenged on this. Of course, you don't judge her, in the sense of thinking worse of her at all. But one cannot let the decisions of a movement be dictated by a sense of moral valour. Bravery is a necessary condition for the success of any movement, but it is not sufficient. You cannot make these decisions with your heart, no matter how much that heart hurts.

                    A hunger strike is a weapon that is potentially very powerful. But it is also incredibly risky because it can kill, and kill for no gain. As such, it should not be used simply because someone is willing to use it, and be the person who dies, which, in this particular case, I still doubt.

                    •  I value your posts, thank you (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      mapantsula, Linda Milazzo

                      I don't think anyone in the anti-war movement is going to watch Diane Wilson waste away.

                      People of peace want life. Not death.

                      However, I know that there are people on this earth who do feel so passionately about matters.

                      Someone once said to me, actually there quoted someone to me, but the gist was... dying for a cause is easy, living for one is hard. So, no, I personally would not starve to death... not yet.

                      However, I have put myself in danger though. A few times. We all must do what we feel we must.

                      I've had enough of this administraion and it's fascist ways. It's about time people started protesting, standing up, sittind down... in any capacity they can.

                      One thing won't stop this insanity. But MANY people don't MANY things can and will.

                      "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

                      by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 05:57:29 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  That's a great quote (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Damnit Janet, Linda Milazzo

                        ... and is sort of similar to what I say below.

                        I'm very glad people are not willing to let her die right now. It is up to the anti-war movement to therefore ensure that her not dying is not her backing down from a confrontation with the administration.

                        We need crafty little victories, one by one, not noble defeats.

                •  quote (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  mapantsula, Linda Milazzo

                  "We haven't shown the Iraqi people that we are truly against the war, and it's time we did that. Their bodies are on the line every day. And so are the bodies of the US soldiers. So shouldn't we be putting our bodies on the line? Shouldn't we be as serious about making peace as some people are about making war?" – Diane Wilson, author and activist.

                  "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

                  by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 05:37:53 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Being prepared to die (0+ / 0-)

                    OK, this is me being a boring South African, but listen to the following statement from the dock from the 1964 Rivonia Trial, where the accused were facing probable death sentences for plotting to overthrow the government, etc. This is a very famous speech in South Africa:


                    It's about four or five minutes or so long. The last two minutes are the most important. There are the last words, but more important than that, there is the reaction you can hear, and imagine more vividly, afterwards. Keep that reaction in mind, because it is the sort of reaction you need to elicit whenever you put your life on the line, and it is the sort of reaction you only get when the audience are faced with the absolutely certain realisation that you mean what you say. There cannot be any room for doubt. And there will be doubt if a willingness to die is bandied about left, right, centre, so that it becomes a cheap piece of rhetoric, no matter how sincere some of those people may happen to be. This is one of those occasions when it is, after all, necessary to keep the powder dry.

                    We all want to be as brave as those who have died for freedom and justice, and, truth is, some of us are. But that's not enough. When people are dying in vast numbers, we should also be willing to take risk upon ourselves. But again, that's not enough. A willingness to do something does not mean it is the smart thing to do, or even the smart thing to risk.

                    In my organisation, many years ago, back in the dark ages, if you weren't willing to get arrested and be taken in to indefinite detention, then you were not properly committed. But if I had ever been arrested, I would have had my butt kicked by the organisation for putting myself in such a stupid position, assuming there were any way I could have got out of it. There are some occasions when it makes sense to get arrested in a public manner. But more often than not, it just undermines the proper functioning of the organisation. I would have been rightly criticised as hotheaded if I had simply done what I was willing to do without very careful decision-making by the entire organisation.

                    Again, this is not about the victory of valour and sincerity over apathy and hypocrisy. It's about selecting the most effective and least costly means to the end of the bloodshed in Iraq. What we should be willing to do must be surbordinated to what we should do.

                    •  recently (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      mapantsula, Linda Milazzo

                      I was about to engage in something that surely was futile and would have gotten' me arrested. My loved ones were in a panic. My Pink Sisters called and gave me new marching orders.  

                      They get arrested alot, yet. But we watch out for each other, too.

                      "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

                      by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 06:33:43 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

          •  Just read the CodePINK blog (0+ / 0-)

            and read the letters from Cindy, Medea and Jodie.  Damnit Janet is spot on in her description of the hunger strike and fast.  Both will happen.   Read the letters.  They're great!!:


  •  That's why I appreciate your powers... (0+ / 0-)

    of observation because I obviously have none.  You read what you comment on.  I read the comments then comment on them.  

    Your way is much more enlightened.  


  •  Geoff Millard arrested/Troops Home Fast (4+ / 0-)

    Thank you for joining with the TROOP HOME FAST!!! and spreading the word.
    There were hundreds this morning outside the White House, people who wanted something to do today that represented how they really felt about July 4th in 2006.  It was a beautiful 2 hours of sharing and celebrating.  We carried our banners through the crowds watching the DC parade, we were surrounded by 20 cops at all times (how scary can a few hundred people in pink be?).  At one point Geoff Millard, an injured Iraqi Vet, a member of IVAW, had enough, he had fought for his country, he moved to the center of the parade and began limping down the center of the road with the help of his cane.  They immediately jumped on him, he asked why he couldn't  march in the parade and was arrested with one of the Grannies for Peace who is 71.  As they were being put into the Paddy Wagon a huge truck in the parade was the longest truck I have ever seen, black, the logo near the cab was Cox Media followed by America in huge letters, below was Supports our Troops, followed by the icon from McDonalds.
    The irony caught everyone.  We stood in disbelief as the truck passed and Geoff was wisked away.  He and the Grannie are out now.  Geoff was already committed to the long term fast, but his resolve is now on fire.

  •  CodePink Photos of the fast and two arrests (3+ / 0-)

    "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." ~Jimi Hendrix

    by Damnit Janet on Tue Jul 04, 2006 at 05:27:07 PM PDT

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