[pjw] REPORT BACK: War as Diplomacy: Friday rally #121 since stay-at-home orders

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Sat Jul 16 17:25:26 EDT 2022

Hello again Iraq Affinity Group supporters

At last night's Friday Rally for Peace and Justice, six of us stood, 
masked up and distanced, then marched around downtown. It was pretty hot 
and humid, but not unbearable. We had a decent number of people giving us 
positive feedback and even a few who took literature from the wagon. One 
veteran spent time talking to several attendees, saying he no longer 
believes in war, but not joining our march. Interesting how many 
ex-military we've been running into of late.

I forgot the "bullhorn" (traffic cone mounted on an oil filter wrench) in 
the car so shouted this month's announcements through my hands, including 
a reminder to watch the recording of our event with former Col Ann Wright 
(it's been holding steady at just 28 total views for a while now).


The news headlines we talked about included:

--Biden is in the middle east, where he co-signed an agreement with Israel 
not to let Iran get a nuclear weapon, essentially saying by any means 
necessary. Threatening force as a last option, Biden says he wants 
diplomacy, but that seems a strange way to be diplomatic.


---Back in the US, a number of conservative lawmakers want to bolster the 
mid-east anti Iran alliance, listing specific countries including Iraq. 
Given the current symbiotic relationship between Iraq and Iran, this makes 
little sense.


--The UN released a report saying that both Russia and Ukraine have used
civilians as human shields in the war that's gone on since the end of 


--The US is boosting funding to train resistance fighters in Syria. 
Imagine if Syria were funding anti-government militias in the US, what the 
reaction would be.


---Also in Syria, the US claims they killed an ISIS leader using a drone 
strike. This is just a few weeks after the claimed they killed and Al 
Qaeda leader there. And nearly 8 years since the US started engaging 
militarily in Syria with no Congressional or UN mandate.


--Former National Security Advisor John Bolton seemed to be bragging about 
having planned coups in various countries including Venezuela, trying to 
minimize what Trump and his cronies did her on Jan 6 2021. People in 
Venezuela are not amused.


--More movement on the War Powers resolution meant to end US support for 
the war in Yemen: Senators Warren and Sanders introduced a Senate 
complement to the House bill we talked about a while ago (which itself was 
created by Reps. Defazio and Jayapal).


--And supporters in Australia are pushing their government to intervene to 
prevent Julian Assange from being extradited to the US. In the big picture 
of ensuring free press and letting the facts about US war crimes get out, 
we are keeping an eye on these developments.


In local news, an officer who joined the Oath Keepers-- one of the groups 
responsible for the attack on the Capitol-- was not disciplined. 
Investigators believed his story that he paid money to be a member but 
did not know what their politics were.


Along the march route I added that while in Israel, Biden met with Mahmoud 
Abbas, who raised the idea of recognizing East Jerusalem as Palestine's 
capitol. After all, the US recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital 
against international norms (where Tel Aviv is recognized). Biden said no.


And as we got back toward the Square, I noted that the House, which could 
have trimmed the defense budget or at least keep it at the ridiculous $833 
billion asked for by the President, passed a package for $850.3 billion, 
just $8.2 billion less than the Senate. Now, they must reconcile. Yawn.


I forgot to mention that Oregon did very well on this bill-- Blumenauer, 
Bonamici, Defazio and even Schrader voted against it... what's up with the 
rest of the USA?

This week the Ann Huntwork Peace Memorial Sign turned off right by the 
Gucci store again, no extended trip or even freezing first. During the 
week an anonymous person sent an article about how underground power 
stations can cause electromagnetic fields that exceed government 
standards. Hmm.


They're expecting COVID to spike here in Multnomah County over the next 
two weeks. Then I guess we go back to more ups and downs of infections. So 
stay safe but do join us any Friday at 5 PM if you're so inclined.

--dan handelman
peace and justice works iraq affinity group

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