[pjw] REPORT BACK: More international shenanigans: Friday rally #69 since stay-at-home orders

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Sat Jul 17 14:52:44 EDT 2021

Hello again supporters of peace and justice

Last night at the Friday Rally for Peace and Justice, six of us 
demonstrated, masked up and distanced, and so far as I know we had zero 
hecklers/detractors. A nice change of pace! We had many supporters 
including at least four who took literature from the wagon of peace, one 
of whom even donated money and thanked us for our work.

I briefly announced our plans to have a special event three weeks from now 
on August 6 to mark Hiroshima/Nagasaki memorial day. "76 Years Later, 
We're Still Building Nukes" will be the theme of the Friday rally that 

We handed out this first version of a flyer for that event:
but need to add info that we'll march over to Waterfront Park near the 
Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility limited in-person 
commemoration. PSR is asking for people to RSVP to attend their event.


Some of the headlines we talked about this week:

--In Haiti, the Prime Minister asked for US and UN troops to "restore 
order," and the US says they might prosecute some of the suspects in the 
President's assassination in US courts. So while Haiti is not a US 
territory, both governments seem to act like it is.


--In Cuba, the US says they want to support the people protesting the 
government there, talking about how they tanked their own economy-- but 
not mentioning the decades-long US sanctions.


--Everyone was just waiting to hear George W Bush's opinion about the 
withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. He doesn't like it! As this article 
points out, Bush started war with Iraq for no reason and diverting 
attention from Afghanistan, not that the US should have been there at all.


--Those of you who've followed PJW for a long time know that in 2008-09 we 
campaigned to get the Oregon legislature to keep the National Guard from 
being deployed to undeclared war zones. A national organization run by 
veterans has introduced similar bills in either 17 or 31 states (this 
article says 31, their website says 17):


--In Iraq, US diplomats visiting denied the Iraqi government's claim that 
they discussed withdrawing US troops to fulfill the Parliaments mandate 
after the assassination of General Soleimani last year.


In local news, the US DOJ, which has a settlement agreement with Portland 
to get the police to stop using so much force, is talking about requiring 
the city to get body cameras as a solution to their noncompliance with 
that agreement. Portland Copwatch is very concerned this will lead to an 
uptick in prosecutions of and spying on community members rather than 
holding more police accountable as the authorities claim.


When we got to the corner where we talk Israel/Palestine, I noted that the 
San Francisco AFL-CIO is considering a resolution that both affirms their 
opposition to antisemitism and Islamophobia and calls for Boycott, 
Divestment and Sanctions on Israel. This is significant after Oakland 
dockworkers refused to unload an Israeli ship in June because of an 
activist picket line.


In the last block as we wrapped up the march, talking about money for 
human needs, I quoted an article sent here by a rally regular about how 
billionaires are getting tax breaks and then fly to outer space instead of 
helping build housing, support education or fix the environment.


Really, really warped country we live in.

In a new experiment with the Ann Huntwork Peace Memorial Sign, we put a 
Universal Power Supply (surge protector with battery backup) between the 
generator and the sign. Unfortunately the sign turned off one block away 
from the Square, but we will continue. (We may "smudge" the sign with 
burning sage at some point too.)

It seems our caution to keep masking up until masks aren't required on 
Trimet is a good gauge, as there's talk of returning to more restrictions 
as the Delta variant takes hold and a new wave of infections is on the 
rise after July 4. That said, if you are feeling comfortable we do welcome 
more folks at the rally.


dan handelman
peace and justice works iraq affinity group

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