[pjw] REPORT BACK: 21 years, 8 years: Friday rally #133 since stay-at-home orders

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Sat Oct 8 16:46:55 EDT 2022

Iraq Affinity Group supporters

Last night's special event at the Friday Rally for Peace and Justice 
coincided exactly with the 21 year anniversary of the war on Afghanistan, 
and came just under two weeks after the 8th anniversary of the US' war on 
Syria. We had eight people at the rally, including one PJW member who 
hadn't attended since before the pandemic! Seven of us went on the march. 
We had a lot of honking horns and other words and gestures of support. One 
person seeing my sign, asked whether there is still a war in Afghanistan. 
I wish they'd stayed around to hear the rally talk.

The first chunk of the talk were highlights of our new fact sheet, which 
is posted online and I will send out as text tomorrow.


We were able to pass out all of the flyers that I brought with me-- 
unfortunately, I left more than half of the ones I made at the office. But 
still, roughly 30 people now have info they probably haven't seen anywhere 
else. Here are the main points I conveyed from the leaflet:

--The US continues its war on Afghanistan militarily, as in the 
knife-laden drone missile that was used to kill an Al Qaeda leader in 
July, diplomatically, in not recognizing the Taliban leadership, and 
economically, as the US took $7 billion of Afghan money and hid it away in 
a Swiss bank.

---One of the main interests in Afghanistan is the $1 trillion in minerals 
that are buried beneath its soil, resources the US wants to get to before 
China or Russia.

---A legacy of the war is th 36 people still in Guantanamo prison, which 
President Biden says he wants to shut down but may be prevented by 
existing Congressional limitations.

--In Syria, the US has set up three military bases without any 
authorization from Congress, the UN, or, of course, Syria itself.

---The people the US is working with are opponents of the Syrian 
government, but are also people that Turkey considers to be "terrorists," 
just proving that one person's terrorist is another person's freedom 
fighter, so we should stop using that word.

--Both countries need aid, not bombs.

Three other related headlines that came in after the fact sheet was 

--A US diplomat says America won't attack Afghanistan militarily; we'll 
have to see how good their word is after the July drone strike and the 
current rhetoric about terrorists taking hold in the country.


--Ukrainian President Vlodimir Zelenskyy is shocked that Israel is not 
supplying them arms; it is stated in this article that's likely due to 
Israel's agreement with Russia which allows it to strike Syria with 
impunity. I think it also could be because Ukraine is rife with Nazis...


--The US raided a town in NE Syria to kill alleged members of the Islamic 
State; since I have not seen any articles in which Syria condemned this 
raid, maybe it is something they both agreed was ok. Good to have 
frenemies to do your dirty work for you.


Meanwhile, in other news:

--The Intercept reports that there are covert US special ops forces on the 
ground in Ukraine, meaning the US is likely directly involved in the war:


--There was yet another US airstrike in Somalia, at least the fourth time 
since early August.


In local news, a Multnomah Sheriff's Deputy was trying to arrest a man 
when a woman entered the fray; the Deputy shot and wounded her; the two 
civilians drove off and crashed their car. Nobody died. This is the most 
recent update, but the above info was known last night:


Along the march route, I relayed the story that the Israeli Defense Forces 
killed a man and shot two journalists from a Palestinian TV outlet, in the 
West Bank. The war on journalists there continues.


And, one more bit from the fact sheet came up as we returned to the 
Square: The US spends more on its military than the next nine countries 
combined. Why not work to fix the environment, house and feed people? 
Thanks to the National Priorities Project for the infographic.


For the second week in a row, the Ann Huntwork Peace Memorial Sign made 
it past the Gucci store and around the corner; this time it froze up but 
made it all the way to the corner of Yamhill and 5th, when someone then 
said out loud "hey the sign froze up but didn't go out." Jinx!

If you are ready to mask up, stay distanced, and join us some Friday, 
we're still there every week at SW Yamhill and Broadway at 5 PM each time.

--dan handelman
peace and justice works iraq affinity group

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