Category Archives: Militarism

22 US House Democrats Press Obama to Adopt ‘No-First-Use’ Nuclear Weapons Policy

Barbara Lee, PDA and the Congressional Progressive Caucus Took the Initiative

By: Joe Gould

Defense News

Oct 13, 2016 – WASHINGTON — Twenty-two more US House lawmakers are calling on President Barack Obama to adopt a policy of no-first-use of nuclear weapons, part of a tide of Democratic lawmakers pushing for restraint on atomic arms as the sun sets on the current administration.

With relations between Washington and Moscow historically tense and unpredictable this week, the lawmakers in a letter to Obama on Thursday expressed worry over the two nations’ launch-under-attack postures and “the risk of catastrophic miscalculation and full-scale nuclear war.”

“As you know, were the United States to exercise its contingency plans to use nuclear weapons first in a conflict against a nuclear-armed adversary, a full-scale nuclear exchange could ensue, killing thousands of civilians,” the letter reads. “For the security and safety of the world, military options that can spiral towards mutually assured destruction should not be on the table.”

Thursday’s letter was led by Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., the Peace and Security Task Force chair for the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Another signatory was Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn. Ellison is the caucus’ co-chair and his party’s chief deputy whip in the House.

A no-first-use policy would minimize the need for "first strike” weapons, they argue in the letter, including the next-generation nuclear-armed cruise missile and intercontinental ballistic missiles, "which could generate significant cost savings and lead other nuclear-armed states to make similar calculations."

Continue reading 22 US House Democrats Press Obama to Adopt ‘No-First-Use’ Nuclear Weapons Policy

Stop the Massacre on Gaza! Vigil at the Courthouse, Saturday, Aug.2, Noon

The Steering Committee of Beaver County Peace Links

has decided to again gather at the Courthouse for a public vigil

for Peace in the Occupied Territories and Israel.


SATURDAY, AUGUST 2
at 12 NOON
in FRONT of the BEAVER COUNTY COURTHOUSE

Please make signs:


“Stop Supporting Israel”

"FREE GAZA"


"Stop the Massacre on Gaza"

"Sovereignty for Palestine"


"Self-determination for Palestinians"


"Justice for Gaza"

"Cease Fire!"

"Stop the Violence"

"Peace is the only Solution"

Resources:
Rep Keith Ellison, End the Blockade of Gaza! http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/keith-ellison-end-the-gaza-blockade-to-achieve-peace/2014/07/29/e5e707c4-16a1-11e4-85b6-c1451e622637_story.html
Collective Punishment in Gaza 
http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/collective-punishment-gaza
http://www.endtheoccupation.org/
http://www.ifamericansknew.org/
http://www.bcpeacelinks.net/

Peace Rally in Pittsburgh

Rallying in suppport of Palestinians in Gaza Rallying in suppport of Palestinians in Gaza, protestors including Tavia LaFollette of Shadyside, left, and Susanne Slavick of Ross Township, right, cradling sheets wrapped to look like dead children

Rallying in suppport of Palestinians in Gaza, protestors including Tavia LaFollette of Shadyside, left, and Susanne Slavick of Ross Township, right, cradling sheets wrapped to look like dead children. Bill Wade/Post-Gazette

Oakland protesters rally for Palestinians against Israeli attacks in Gaza

By Amy McConnell Schaarsmith

Beaver County Blue via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

July 19, 2014 – Protesters cradling sheets wrapped to look like dead children rallied in Oakland on Friday to call on the United States to withdraw financial support for Israel over that country‘‍s military assault in the Gaza Strip.

The group of about 100 protesters waved signs and Palestinian flags, and chanted slogans such as, “Make a choice, Obama, human rights or apartheid!” in front of the University of Pittsburgh’‍s Hillman Library on Forbes Avenue as evening traffic rushed by, with some cars honking in support. Holding the sheet-wrapped figures — one of which included what looked like the dangling legs and shoes of a young girl — the group then marched along Forbes and Fifth avenues to draw attention to their cause.

“Residents of Gaza have been under siege for such a long time, they‘‍re barely living to begin with,” said 21-year-old Pitt senior Hadeed Salaameh, a native Palestinian who said she helped organize the protest. “We as humans, we have to speak out, it’‍s our responsibility, and as Americans have to speak out because our tax dollars are funding this.”

Continue reading Peace Rally in Pittsburgh

Obama Plan to Bomb Syria Protested in Pittsburgh

Robin Rombach/Post-Gazette: Protesters gather Friday on the corner of Bigelow Boulevard and Forbes Avenue in Oakland in disapproval of possible U.S. military action against Syria.

By Amy McConnell Schaarsmith

Beaver County Peace Links via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Sept 7, 2013 – Weary of nearly two decades of intermittent wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan, protesters met in Oakland on Friday to tell the Obama administration not to bomb Syria in retaliation for its apparent use of chemical weapons in a Damascus suburb last month.

Chanting slogans such as "more money for jobs, not for war!" and waving signs with slogans such as "Obushma" and "These Colors Don’t Run the World," the group of approximately 100 demonstrators organized by the Thomas Merton Center Antiwar Committee clogged the intersection of Forbes Avenue and Bigelow Boulevard and repeatedly crossed the streets in front of stopped vehicles.

Among them, Syrian native Elaine Khalil, 47, said the United States — and all the other countries trying to influence the outcome of the conflict between Syrian President Bashir Assad and the rebels trying to oust him — should stop meddling and let the Syrian people make their own peace.

"With [President Barack] Obama supporting this war, our fear is it would actually explode into World War III," Ms. Khalil said, citing the possibility that military strikes might incite retribution by other countries in the region. "If they would pull their hands out of it, the Syrian people would resolve their own problems."

Continue reading Obama Plan to Bomb Syria Protested in Pittsburgh

Will Congress Represent the Antiwar Majority and Block an Attack on Syria?

 

PDA urging Congressional Progressive Caucus to oppose US military attack on Syria, after Barbara Lee wins on debating the war policy.

By Cole Stangler

Beaver County Blue via In These Times

August 29, 2013 – Advocates of using U.S. military force against forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have long made their case without success. But following a chemical weapons attack on civilians allegedly committed by Assad’s forces last week, the United States inched closer to military intervention.

On Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry called the attack that left hundreds dead a “moral obscenity” and gave the strongest indication to date that the United States could be intervening militarily. As United Nations inspectors continue their investigations into last week’s attacks, President Obama says the United States has already “concluded” that the Assad regime is responsible.

Reports indicated that a U.S. attack on specific targets in Syria could take as place as soon as Thursday. But on Wednesday night, hours after delivering a speech to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, President Obama said in an interview that he had not yet come to a decision.

As the Obama administration mulls its course of action, opposition is slowly emerging in Congress, which is scheduled to be on summer recess until September 9. So far, nearly all of that opposition has focused not on the intervention itself, but on the executive branch’s lack of consultation with Congress.

Continue reading Will Congress Represent the Antiwar Majority and Block an Attack on Syria?

Military spending is not right way to boost America’s economic security

By Michael Shank& Elizabeth Kucinich

Beaver County Blue via Fox News Opinion

May 15, 2013 – That Washington is holding defense cuts responsible for slow economic growth is a specious argument at best. War spending is unproductive and inflationary. Modern defense costs are capital intensive, not labor intensive, making the industry inefficient as a job creator.

The defense industry has a presence in congressional districts across this country, so cuts affect every member. But every district in the U.S. has pressing infrastructure, education, health and environmental needs, and the return on the taxpayer’s dollar is much higher when invested on these areas.
Instead of concentrating money on capital intensive, military hardware purposed for destruction, and causing long term economic drain, our very limited and valuable economic resources should be invested in building the true strength and capacity of our economy, our nation, and her people.

During the heightened banking crisis in 2009, Rep. James Oberstar, then Chair of House Transportation Committee, called for a massive Eisenhower-level of investment in transportation infrastructure. He was right.

The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates that the U.S. requires $3.6 trillion in infrastructure investment by 2020 to bring our grade D+ standards to safe standards.

This is exactly what we need: to put bridge-builders to work rather than funding technology and personnel to destroy bridges, and to take tank-making factories and repurpose them to build high-speed trains.
In prioritizing military spending, Congress is cutting the very programs that can actually strengthen our economy: Cutting federal assistance to the states, forcing them to lay off teachers, firefighters, and social workers; cutting opportunities for job creation, training, and placement programs; and eviscerating funding for children’s programs and assistance for seniors.

These actions make no economic sense.

Continue reading Military spending is not right way to boost America’s economic security