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All-Out War in Yemen

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The United States is now involved in two air wars in the Middle East, allying with Iran in Iraq, and Saudis in Yemen, not to mention more widespread drone actions.

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Airstrikes led by Saudi Arabia [King Salman pictured with Obama to right], and supported by other members of Gulf Cooperating Council and the U.S. government, continued to hit Yemen on Thursday as the situation in one of the world's most impoverished, yet strategically important countries continues to unravel amid what can only be described now as all-out war.

Reports indicate that a first wave of bombings overnight which resulted in a number of civilian deaths--including entire families trapped in flattened houses--have spurred widespread anger in Sanaa and other targeted cities, even among members of the population opposed to the Houthi rebels who have now wrested control of much of the country from President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, whose whereabouts remain hard to establish.

The White House, reports Reuters, has said it is actively supporting the operation and President Obama has authorized U.S. "logistical and intelligence support" for the bombing campaign. 

see Sorrow and Rage

"U.S. involvement has taken Afghanistan to the brink of utter devastation. We have ruined Afghanistan so that we can claim to save it from ruin." -- Sonali Kolhatkar, Afghan Women's Mission

Obama extends America's longest war

Sunset the Forever War

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ISIS is Bad

Too many people are accepting an expansion of the U.S. war machine on the basis that "something has to be done about ISIS."

The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham is a response to U.S. occupations, bombs, economic exploitation, and support of every reactionary regime in the Middle East. The wars on Afghanistan and Iraq have only strengthened the basis on which ISIS operates. But no party in the fight, not Islamic militias or the new Iraqi government paid for by the United States has "right" on its side. ISIS offers a disastrous future for the people, and is no damn good.

Pretense of "humanitarian aid" fails to disguise the true nature of U.S. imperialism. The invasion of Iraq in 2003 was conducted in a lawless way, destroying education, legal, medical, water, sewage, security and electrical systems. When Iraqis rebelled, Bush's "surge" in 2007 handed out arms to Sunni and Shia, supporting death squads on both sides to set them against each other.

U.S. intervention left what had been a relatively secular country split along sectarian lines, with a weak puppet government, and a huge opening for Islamic fundamentalists to push for religious rule.

AUMF is Worse

"The United States doesn't actually declare war anymore--the last time it did was World War II--but Congress still sanctions American combat through authorizations for the use of military force." -- Joshua Keating, Slate.com.

War on Iraq has never helped the Iraqi People. Bombings, economic strangulation through sanctions, and occupation of Iraq for 24 years are responsible for uncounted deaths - possibly over 1 million - leaving a third of the population displaced, in need of emergency aid or dead. The U.S. began bombing Iraq again this summer, and now Syria, based on the lie that Islamic fundamentalist groups represent an immediate threat to the U.S.

Bush's 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) set into motion the drone war, torture, and mass warrantless spying. Under Obama's proposed AUMF the government will be free to wage endless, expanding wars all over the world without geographic limits. All of this imperial military doctrine is absolutely illegal, whether Congress approves it or not.

Authorization for a "blank check" on the Use of Military Force is stumbling, as it should... activists fight to repudiate the illegal infrastructure for 13 years of war crimes. 

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RALLY AND MARCH 
Saturday, March 21
12 Noon
Powell & Market, San Francisco

Next weekend marks the 12th Anniversary of 
Shock and Awe, the U.S.-led invasion and 
occupation of Iraq.  

In solidarity with the "Spring Rising" protest at the White House, we say: 

NO MORE U.S. War on Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen
U.S. INTERVENTION Fuels the Islamic State
NO GOOD Can Come of Military Action in the Middle East

Close to 2,500 people have been killed by U.S. drone strikes outside declared war zones since Obama's inauguration in 2009, nearly six times more deaths than under the Bush Regime.  

The criminal war of aggression by the U.S. government and allies helped to create the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) says former UN secretary general Kofi Annan: 

"I was against this invasion and my fears have been founded. The break-up of the Iraqi forces poured hundreds if not thousands of disgruntled soldiers and police officers onto the streets... The aim of creating democracy without the existing institutions ushered in corrupt sectarian governments."  

Annan added that the country has been unstable ever since, providing a huge opening for Islamic fundamentalists to push for religious rule.

Drone Warfare spurs growth of sectarian violence. Since President Obama unleashed his "weapon of choice" drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia the growth of ISIS has skyrocketed. With his decision to sell military drones to allied countries, the Nobel Peace Prize winner opens the door to world drone warfare. Exports promise a windfall for the aerospace industry, and misery for anyone challenging U.S. hegemony.

The World Can't Wait - Ground Killer Drones - End the U.S. War of Terror.

The SF event has been called and endorsed by ANSWER Coalition, Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC), AYPAL - Building API Community Power, BAYAN-USA, Code Pink, Critical Resistance, International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, Middle East Children's Alliance, Mujeres Unidas Activas, Occupy Action Council San Francisco, Party for Socialism & Liberation, Cindy Sheehan, Socialist Viewpoint, Unitarian Universalists for Peace & Justice, WORD - Women Organized to Resist & Defend, and World Can't Wait.
A daily raise of about $50 is unlikely to slow the flight from desktop killing. The Air Force has had to press regular cargo and jet pilots into servicing the Pentagon's enormous demand for new techno-warriors.

One thing is clear: the pilots are not just killing "bad guys" and they know it because they see everything that happens before, during, and after a drone strike.
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Hundreds of high school and college students marched to the Wisconsin State Capitol today to protest yet another murder by police. 

Victim Tony Robinson, 19, was unarmed. His killer had used deadly force before, shooting and killing a man in 2007, for which he received a commendation. The officer has been placed on administrative leave with pay.

Robinson was a 2014 graduate of Sun Prairie High School.

End the American War OF Terror

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"..when my country wipes out wedding parties in other lands or organizes torture regimes and offshore prison systems where anything goes, or tries to jail yet another whistleblower, when it acts cruelly, arbitrarily, or barbarically, I feel shock and wonder why more Americans don't have the same reaction." 

-- Tom Engelhardt, TomDispatch.com

Ten Commandments for a better world


Photo: bodies of nine men killed in a U.S. drone strike on December 12, 2013 near the town of Radda, Yemen.  Nasser Al-Sane / Reprieve

Latest News From "Camp Justice"

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Metro police arrested Father Louis Vitale and 32 others early Friday for trespassing at Creech Air Force Base where 140 peace activists had gathered to protest U.S. drone operations in the Middle East and Afghanistan that are controlled remotely at the base, 45 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

The protesters blame operators of remotely piloted Predator and Reaper aircraft for killing innocent civilians with laser-guided Hellfire missiles and smart bombs.

"Shut down Creech!" the throng chanted after Las Vegas police gave a five-minute warning for the crowd to disperse as base personnel arrived...

Dozens arrested in three waves of civil disobedience

more photos here

International Women's Day, Sunday March 8, 10:00 am

Saint Mary's Cathedral, 1111 Geary, San Francisco

Salvatore Cordileone, long-time enemy of abortion rights and gay marriage, has imposed a "Morality Clause" on all the teachers in Catholic schools in San Francisco, which condemns the supposed "grave evils" of things like homosexuality, abortion & birth control, masturbation, and sex outside of marriage. San Francisco is home to over 90,000 LGBT people, and Cordileone and his dark ages politics are not welcome here. 

Come out and STAND UP! Love is NOT a sin, sex is NOT a sin, abortion is NOT a sin, and there is NOTHING SACRED or "moral" about keeping people down. 

REJECT Cordileone! REJECT patriarchy! REJECT a dark ages morality!

www.facebook.com/events/439899312831234

Exceptional Crimes

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Endless incarceration, extrajudicial killing, pervasive surveillance, drone strikes in defiance of national boundaries, torture on demand, and immunity for all of the above:

Washington, more than any other power, created the modern international community of laws and treaties, yet it now reserves the right to defy those same laws with impunity. A sovereign ruler should, said [Nazi Germany's chief jurist Carl] Schmitt, discard laws in times of national emergency. So the United States, as the planet's last superpower or, in Schmitt's terms, its global sovereign, has in these years repeatedly ignored international law, following instead its own unwritten rules of the road for the exercise of world power...

From Torture to Drones: U.S. Gave Itself a Global Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card

Stop Funding Israel's War Crimes

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Since the beginning of February the "ISRAEL'S WAR CRIMES: YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK" ad (left) has been appearing on the sides of buses along some of the popular bus routes in San Francisco. The photo is from the Israeli invasion of Gaza in 2014 that killed more than 2000 Palestinians, mostly noncombatants, and displaced nearly 10% of the population.

NoTaxDollarsToIsrael.com works to end the use of taxpayer funding to Israel, including tax exemption to projects in Israel that support the abuse of human rights.

photo by Phil Pasquini

Government leaders and corporations fiddle like Nero while the Earth burns, pointing the finger at each other and criminally condemning the planet to sure destruction... 

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This precious and indispensable planet is the ultimate commons. As the commons it suffers from the fact that no individual and private interests can cope with what the Earth needs to survive and be protected. Those who see things is terms of private interests cannot and will not rise to meet the terms of this crisis.

Only those who recognize the public interest and who will fight for the public interest can recognize the catastrophe underway and can save the Earth. Only a system that is based upon the public interest can rescue this planet from certain catastrophe, no longer something in the future but what's happening right now. 

Truth-Teller Released From Prison

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John Kiriakou is the only CIA employee to go to prison in connection with the agency's torture program. Not because he tortured anyone, but because he revealed information on torture to a reporter.

In a wide-ranging phone interview with The Intercept, Kiriakou, 50, shared his thoughts on the Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA interrogation techniques, on his incarceration, and on his future after prison.

Kiriakou began his final 'Letter from Loretto' by expressing gratitude to all the people who supported him throughout his time in prison. He mentions a few of the friends he made while imprisoned. He then declares, "By the time you read this, I'll be home. Now the real work can begin--the struggle for human rights, civil liberties and prison reform. I can guarantee you that I am unbowed, unbroken, uninstitutionalized and ready to fight."

painting by Robert Shetterley

8 Activists Block Drone Base

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Code Pink's Toby Blome reports:

On Tuesday during early morning commute, 8 Anti-Drone activists blockaded Wheatland road into Beale Air Force Base for 1 hour and 20 minutes, during the morning commute. The majority of military personnel and non-military personnel enter through this gate each morning, totaling hundreds of vehicles. In a continuing 4 year long monthly resistance to illegal drone assassinations and perpetual war, these activists refused to get out of the road when a very polite highway patrol officer arrived after the first half hour of blockade.

After much initial discussion between the officer and the activists, the officer radioed in to his supervisor, who gave him the order not to arrest. Within 10 minutes another officer arrived on the scene, and the two officers proceeded to use their patrol cars to create a barrier between the peace activists and the commute cars, creating a second layer of blockade. All drivers trying to get into the base that morning were forced to take a long detour to other gates, significantly delaying their arrival to the base. 

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Occupy Beale Air Force Base activists were motivated by the recent continued escalation of illegal drone attacks by the Obama Administration in Pakistan and Yemen, as well as in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, and elsewhere. Just on Monday a 12 year old boy, Mohammed Saleh Qayed Taeiman, was killed by a U.S. drone attack in Yemen, along with 2 adults, while driving on a roadway. 
Mohammed had lost his father and 17 year old brother by a U.S. drone attack in 2011.

Photo via National Organization for Drone Victims

March 4-6: SHUT DOWN CREECH!  

Creech AFB, the heart of U.S. drone warfare in southern Nevada, will see the largest ever drone protest in the country. Bring Affinity groups, invite friends and help us Shut Down the very base where CIA drone killing is executed!


Connecting the dots to the rampant police violence against black and brown people of color, activists brought the "Black Lives Matter" theme to Beale this month. "From Ferguson to Pakistan, Oakland to Afghanistan, STOP THE RACIST KILLING." A flyer distributed to Beale personnel explained the extreme racism that exists both in U.S. global warfare, drone killing and in law enforcement practices, where lives of people of color and people of other cultures are so easily expendable. Occupy Beale activists refuse to be complicit in the dehumanization of other peoples' lives. The one hour-plus blockade was very successful in stopping "business as usual" at Beale Air Force Base and demanding that these policies change.

Observers of Martin Luther King Jr. Day have this year linked the federal holiday to a rallying cry in recent months during demonstrations over police brutality: "Black lives matter." Reuters 


"The problem of police brutality is real; it's going on in every major city." - Gabriel Baez, nephew of Eric Garner


..organizers said they "demand the leadership of the state take immediate action to institute meaningful, systemic policy solutions to address the worst racial disparities in the country." AP report from St. Paul, Minnesota


In year that saw renewed calls for racial justice, over 50 nationwide demonstrations held to 'desanitize' the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King. - Lauren McCauley, Common Dreams

Booting Up

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NOTE: Report on January 13 action here

Press Conference followed by March to Office of the Dean 

West Terrace of Boalt Hall, UC Berkeley

"Why is one of the central perpetrators of a systematic torture regime teaching at Berkeley law school and welcomed in our most respectable opinion venues?" 

Boalt Hall administrators have been dodging that question for nearly a decade. Remedy for crimes against humanity has no expiration date; apologists for the repudiated opinions of John Yoo have no legal standing, and people of conscience refuse to accept brutality carried out in their name. Release of the Senate Intelligence Committee Report on Torture has strengthened resolve of justice advocates from the legal, religious, medical and campus communities around the U.S. for immediate closure of the Guantanamo Torture Camp.

Fire, Disbar, PROSECUTE John Yoo!

Prosecutions are the very best way to ensure that officials don't torture again. The freedom afforded Bush administration officials today threatens to normalize criminal behavior by "do it again" Cheney and company. The Center for Constitutional Rights' Michael Ratner applauds investigation by a German human rights group, but as Curt Goering at The Center for Victims of Torture reminds us, "It is about us. And it is up to all of us to act."

From Ferguson to Guantanamo, masses of people are challenging the legitimacy of policies that contribute to state sanctioned terror. 

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