[pjw] REPORT BACK: : Friday rally #130 since stay-at-home orders

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Sat Sep 17 13:12:39 EDT 2022

Hello again peaceful people

Telling you about the attendance at last night's Friday Rally for Peace 
and Justice is a little like one of those math problems about two trains 
leaving cities traveling different speeds. In short, we had a total of 12 
people at the rally. The longer story is that three people stayed behind 
during the march, but one caught up to us for the last two blocks; two 
other people hung back during the march to engage in conversation with 
someone and caught up after we disbanded but two of us were still chatting 
on the sidewalk. So, mostly we had nine people on the march (then 7, then 

We had a lot of supportive honks and passers-by, and were able to hand out 
over 30 pieces of literature-- mostly flyers for the October 7 
Afghanistan/Syria rally and the new PJW brochures.


Apparently, the person who stopped to talk during the march wanted to 
encourage us to change our signs to say "most wars are bad" or the like. I 
don't think that's an effective way to make a rhetorical point, and even 
people who have fought in wars of liberation will probably tell you they 
did not think having a war was a good thing. I don't think Mothers Against 
Drunk Driving would have fared so well saying "sometimes it's ok to drive 
drunk," for example.

ANYWAY, you probably want to know what we talked about this week in 
headlines, so let's go:

--The Senate is going to deliberate on whether to send $6.5 Billion in aid 
to Taiwan. China has warned of repercussions, but that's probably just 
making the warmongers in Congress smile.


--The US has agreed to release the $7 Billion in Afghan funds they've been 
holding (after being told by a judge and some 9/11 families they can't 
give it to 9/11 survivors here), but the catch is that it's going into an 
international bank in Switzerland for deliberations on distribution.


--A UN envoy to Iran has called for an end to the US' unilateral sanctions 
for the damage they are doing to ordinary Iranians.


--Probably to provoke Russia, the US and NATO have started up wargames in 
the Mediterranean.


--Iraq may be on the brink of a Shia civil war, not like the Sunni-Shia 
fighting or even Muslims vs. Kurds fighting, according to Foreign 
Policy. All of this, though, stems to the US invasion of 2003.


--In Syria, Israel bombed Damascus, killing five soldiers, and the 
international community sits silently.


In local news, Oregon-wise, police in Springfield shot and killed a man at 
a day care center, marking the 30th law enforcement shooting in the state 
this year. Before 2017, there had never been this many shootings in the 


Along the march route, I noted that two UN special envoys on Palestine 
called Israel's recent crackdown on non-governmental organizations 
"illegal and unacceptable."


Previously, the CIA stated that they could not find any evidence of these 
groups having ties to "terrorism." The C-I-A.


And as we got back toward the square, I referred to this recent article 
about the top five defense contractors receiving $200 Billion last year, a 
figure that could increase with the recent bumping up of the military 
budget. None of that money is going to house or feed people or make them 


Things were back to what's been mostly status quo as the Ann 
Huntwork Peace Memorial Sign turned off in front of the Gucci store. The 
sign made an appearance on Monday at the Keaton Otis vigil, which was a 
large celebration to unveil a permanent art installation at NE 6th and 
Halsey. Organizers of that event placed masks at information tables and 
reminded everyone to mask up for safety. I try not to be too harsh about 
the issue at our events but we do hope as a courtesy that everyone who 
attends will mask up and stay distanced. Distancing was a little rough at 
the start of the march as we had to pass by hundreds of people waiting to 
get into a concert at the Square.

Anyway, we're still there every week-- as I noted last night, we're less 
than two months away from 21 years of the Friday rally (and next week 
marks 2.5 years of PJW being the sponsor). Join us if you can/are able and 

--dan handelman
peace and justice works iraq affinity group

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