Tulsa Peace Fellowship

There never was a good war or a bad peace. ~Ben Franklin

City in Oregon Allows Anti-War Groups Equal Access to Schools | The Tulsa Peace Fellowship's Counter-Recruitment Update/Digest, for Nov 2011

Truth in Recruiting - "Don't Believe the Hype!"

Volunteer needed to keep this newsletter going. Contact armywrong@cox.net if interested.

Lead Story from the past month's news:

Oregon city’s schools to allow anti-war groups
— Portland school board adopted a policy that gives anti-war “counter-recruiters” the same access to high school students that the military gets.

“What we want is a balanced account of military service,” said school board member Matt Morton, one of at least four board members supporting the policy. The policy is like those already in place in Seattle, San Francisco and some other cities, the Oregonian newspaper reported.

related, college-campus editorial:
ROTC recruiters and ROTC students at any Christian school mock the God of Peace

"The whole point of St. Ignatius’ life was his renunciation of militarism."
~Fr. John Dear

page 1

featured op/ed
Honor, Sacrifice, and Other Civilian Delusions

"Honor? A soldier is just a nationally certified hit man, perfectly amoral."
~Fred Reed

file under: sadists in charge
Aristine Maharry, 29 years old, went AWOL and now lives in Freedom Plaza
--heartbreaking story of "basic training" including physical assault and rape by drill sergeants

file under: the growing gangster nation inside the U.S. military
The FBI Announces Gangs Have Infiltrated Every Branch Of The Military

facts & figures:
The FBI has released a new gang assessment announcing that there are 1.4 million gang members in the US, a 40 percent increase since 2009, and that many of these members are getting inside the military.

from the archives:
Post-World War II Servicemen’s Strike Wave (1945)
--America has its own domestic examples of military resistance, perhaps most notably the strike wave against redeployment following World War II.

page 2

War criminals at Hancock Airbase in upstate New York on trial
--38 pro se activists and former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark argue "military drones" (unarmed aerial vehicles, or UAVs) contravene Nuremberg principles of international law.

related story:
How do you console the kid at the computer console who killed U.S. soldiers playing with his joystick?
Multiple missteps led to drone killing U.S. troops in Afghanistan
file under:  unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs

file under: “friendly fire”

from the archives: featured song
The Draft Dodger Rag, on YouTube

Dave Rovics performs "Draft Dodger Rag," by Phil Ochs, an antiwar standard from the 60's


Last Nuclear ‘Monster Weapon’ Gets Dismantled
--B-53 nuke bomb, a relic of the Cold War, gets decommissioned

Quebec Bosnia veteran launches hunger strike
--Former soldier Pascal Lacoste : test shows a high level of depleted uranium in his system

Israeli Warships Intercept Gaza-Bound Aid Boats
--No deaths or injuries were reported and the boats and the activists aboard them were rerouted to an Israeli port

file under: no statute of limitations for war crimes
Argentine court sentences 'Angel of Death,' 11 other ex-officers to life for junta crimes

"Ole, ole, they will meet the fate of the Nazis. Wherever they go, we will find them," family members chanted.

file under: preventing blowback
New Kyrgyzstan President Wants US Military Base Closed
--The president-elect promised to let the lease on the base, which provides a supply route to troops in Afghanistan, expire in 2014

related event:

Tulsa Peace Fellowship

monthly roundable discussion, for grassroots members & steering committee

6:15 pm to 8:00 pm, THURSDAY evening, Nov 10th 2011

1314 N. Greenwood Ave., in Tulsa
 at UU Church of the Restoration / Peace House Tulsa

Located just north of downtown -- Come join like-minded Tulsans, including members from other local non-partisan groups such as the Tulsa University chapter of Amnesty International, Veterans for Peace, the Center for Racial Justice in Tulsa, the Tulsa Interfaith Allliance, Pax Christi, and the Quakers.

 Contact the TPF Steering Cttee beforehand to get on the "stack"


We're also on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/407574853451/


epitaph for this edition of "Truth in Recruiting"

Soldiers! Don't give yourselves to brutes, men who despise you, enslave you; who regiment your lives, tell you what to do, what to think and what to feel! Who drill you, diet you, treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don't give yourselves to these unnatural men - machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines, you are not cattle, you are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don't hate! Only the unloved hate; the unloved and the unnatural.
~Charlie Chaplin, at the end of the 1940 film "The Great Dictator"
See on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QcvjoWOwnn4


The Tulsa Peace Fellowship's Counter-Recruitment Update/Digest, for Nov 2011
lead story

Ore. city’s schools to allow anti-war groups

The Associated Press, Monday Oct 24, 2011

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland school board on Monday was set to adopt a policy that gives anti-war “counter-recruiters” the same access to high school students that the military gets.

The policy is like those already in place in Seattle, San Francisco and some other cities, the Oregonian newspaper reported.

“What we want is a balanced account of military service,” said school board member Matt Morton, one of at least four board members supporting the policy.

Beginning in 1995, the Portland school board banned military recruitment in schools, primarily because of the military’s discrimination against gays. But in 2001, the federal No Child Left Behind law required that military recruiters get the same access to public high school campuses and to students’ addresses and home phone numbers that college recruiters do.

“We have difficulty making inroads to even get into those Portland schools,” said Lt. Col. Cary Miller, chief operations officer for Oregon Army National Guard recruiting. “My recruiting force is a professional force. They’re not going to step out of line or lie to kids.”

He said his recruiters try to reach Portland teens less directly, through sponsoring basketball tournaments, staffing booths at festivals and putting a float in the city’s Rose Parade.

The War Resisters League, Veterans for Peace and other groups hold regular sidewalk protests outside Portland high schools, said John Grueschow, coordinator of the Resisters League’s military and draft counseling programs.

“We feel that, since the military is required to be let in there, there should be some response,” Grueschow said. “We should have the same opportunity they do to present students information.”

The board planned to ask district staffers to prepare an information packet for distribution at every high school to tell students about military recruiting tactics, their right to have their contact information withheld from the military and other post-high school options for students to serve their country, including AmeriCorps.


related op/ed from Father John Dear

ROTC recruiters and students at any Christian school mock the God of Peace
by John Dear
National Catholic Reporter
Oct-Nov 2011

I came across the latest issue of the alumni magazine of Loyola University in Baltimore, Maryland. On the cover we see the back of a young ROTC student cadet wearing her military fatigues, and the title, “‘Til the Battle’s Over.” The lead article features some of the many young Catholics that this Jesuit school trains for war. This issue of the magazine is a disgrace. But so is the presence of the U.S. military at any so-called Christian institution.

What else is new? Most Catholic, Jesuit, Christian universities in the U.S. take millions of dollars from the Pentagon to train students for war -- and then call ROTC a “student” organization. In doing so, they serve the U.S. war machine and betray the Gospel of peace. They present fine rationale about having intellectual soldiers who will wage “better” wars -- but they can never quite claim that they are doing God’s will, obeying the Gospel, or following the nonviolent Jesus.

What caught my particular attention this time was the news that each May at Loyola, the ROTC cadets profess their oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution (if necessary by killing all our enemies), not in an auditorium, but in the university’s Alumni Memorial Chapel in front of the Blessed Sacrament. I consider this plain, old fashioned blasphemy. Here’s an excerpt:

"It’s the day before commencement. Thirteen ROTC cadets march into Alumni Memorial Chapel as 'The Battle Hymn of the Republic' plays. Flanked by family and friends, each member of the ROTC reflects a deep pride. Standing on the altar, the newly commissioned officers take an oath to the Constitution of the United States. “This oath is an ideal and unlike any others,” Lieutenant Colonel Steven Carroll, chair of Loyola’s military science department, tells them.
With more than 90 cadets, ROTC is one of the largest student organizations on campus. On Tuesdays and Thursdays the students wear their uniforms as they go to classes and participate in daily student life. In recent years, at Commencement, the longest applause has been given when the newly commissioned ROTC cadets are introduced."
“St. Ignatius was a soldier,” one student, Christel Sacco, says, explaining why she joined ROTC at a Jesuit university. “A lot of people don’t put two and two together.” I thought the whole point of St. Ignatius’ life was his renunciation of militarism. He stayed up in prayer all night in a church, and placed his sword below a statue of Mary to begin his new life of Gospel nonviolence. It was precisely his conversion away from militarism that led to the Society of Jesus, his life of mystical prayer, and his call to service.
“If you think about it, the goal of war is peace,” Sacco continues. “I joined the military to bring peace to the nations we’re at war with, to bring justice and legitimacy to the people who are there now.” “It’s the soldier who above all desires peace,” Carroll explains. I disagree. As Gandhi taught the means are the ends; the only way to peace is through peaceful means, not warfare.

A lot of people don’t put two and two together. Despite the rhetoric, it appears to me that these students are not critical thinkers, that they’re very naïve, and that they have not been taught the Gospel.

Many people have written elsewhere far better than me about why ROTC does not belong on a Christian campus. I simply submit that Fr. Linnane and his military friends are misguided. The church, for example, was at one time all about unqualified pacifism -- in the first three centuries. Then Constantine and later Augustine led the formal rejection of the Sermon on the Mount and turned to the pagan Cicero to justify mass murder for one’s empire.

Gospel peacemaking, also, is not about passivity, but about actively confronting injustice everywhere through nonviolent means, and digging out the root causes of war. The tired argument of educating elite officers in the Jesuit tradition has been used for more than 60 years, and does not hold up. With the hundreds of thousands of Jesuit educated officers, we still wage war, kill people, and lead the world to the brink. We are not making the world better; we’re making it worse.

And if supporting “the right of Catholics to hold our beliefs dear” is the goal -- what about the Catholics of Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, and Libya? When we train our young for war, we send them off to kill our brother and sister Catholics. I remember when I met the Cardinal of Baghdad in 1999, how he broke down sobbing over how U.S. Catholics kill Iraqi Catholics. The universality of the church, the global Body of Christ, is reason enough to outlaw ROTC and the U.S. military from any Catholic campus. We do not want one of our students hurting any other Catholic or Christian (or anyone!) anywhere.

Millions of Christians reject the lies of war. They know that war and preparing for war do not make us safer or sow the seeds of peace. It can’t end terrorism because it is terrorism. War certainly, hasn’t helped our economy or the environment or our health. As the world is learning, there are many creative nonviolent ways to solve international conflict.

But I am scandalized that a supposedly Christian institution so blatantly rejects the teachings of the nonviolent Jesus -- “Love one another. Blessed are the peacemakers. Offer no violent resistance to one who does evil. Put down the sword. Love your enemies.” Loyola and other Christian universities can no longer claim to be teaching the Gospel of Jesus.

I consider the ROTC commissioning service held every year in the Alumni Memorial Chapel in front of the Blessed Sacrament to be blasphemous.

In particular, the oath which the cadets take is in direct violation of the Sermon on the Mount. It pledges that if necessary, they will kill any enemies of our nation.

The early church did not allow the profession of any such idolatrous oaths, especially to the Roman military. It taught that one’s baptism meant your faith and allegiance belonged solely to the nonviolent Jesus.

The ROTC oath is a pledge to kill the enemies of the United States; Jesus, on the other hand, commands us to love them. Only then, he announces, will we be “sons and daughters of our heavenly God who makes the sun shine on the good and the bad and the rain to fall on the just and the unjust.” The ROTC oath, professed in the Loyola chapel, mocks the God of peace.

I urge Loyola University to cancel those ceremonies, close its ROTC program, teach nonviolent conflict resolution and the nonviolence of Jesus, and “study war no more.” In the name of the nonviolent Jesus, I invite every Loyola student in ROTC, and every student in any U.S. ROTC program, to quit immediately and follow the nonviolent Jesus on the road to peace.

And I invite people from around the world to write nonviolent letters to Fr. Linnane, Loyola University and their Alumni magazine, to share thoughts about the way of peace and Loyola’s commissioning ceremony in the university chapel (Office of the President, Loyola University, 4501 North Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21212). If plans continue for the commissioning service to be held May 2012, in the chapel, I invite everyone to join me in a peaceful protest. Perhaps we can profess the Pax Christi vow of nonviolence as a witness. Or nonviolently disrupt their unholy ceremony.

Many have told me that the disarmament of our universities is no longer possible, that the culture of war has infiltrated every aspect of civil society, that it’s not possible to have a Catholic campus for peace.

But I remember my experience in El Salvador in the 1980s at the Jesuit-run University of Central America. The Jesuits turned that campus into a training camp for justice and peace. Every class, every lecture, every program was aimed at ending the war and transforming El Salvador. The steadfast determination of the Jesuits made that university an unparalleled anti-war center. The entire university became such a threat to the culture of war that inevitably, U.S.-backed government death squads killed the president and five other Jesuits.

That university approached the Christian ideal. That’s what every Catholic and Christian university should become -- a school for peace, a training camp for Gospel nonviolence, where young people are taught how to love enemies, not how to kill them.


byline: John Dear is a Jesuit priest, peace activist and author of the recent book Lazarus Come Forth!: How Jesus Confronts the Culture of Death & Invites Us Into the New Life of Peace.

The Tulsa Peace Fellowship's Counter-Recruitment Update/Digest, for Nov 2011
page 1

featured op/ed
Honor, Sacrifice, and Other Civilian Delusions
by Fred Reed
November 02, 2011

I read frequently among the less neuronal of the supposed honor of soldiers, of the military virtues of courage, loyalty, and uprightness — that in an age of moral decomposition only the military adheres to principles, and that our troops in places like Afghanistan nobly make sacrifices to preserve our freedoms and democracy. Is not all of this nonsense?

Honor? A soldier is just a nationally certified hit man, perfectly amoral. When he joins the military, he agrees to kill anyone he is told to kill, regardless of whether he has previously heard of the country in which he will kill them or whether the residents pose any threat to him or his. How is this honorable? It is cause for lifelong shame.

It is curious that so many soldiers think that they are Christians. Christianity is incompatible with military service, if any Christianity is meant that Christ would have regarded with other than repugnance.

The explanation of course lies in the soldier’s moral compartmentalization.

In conflict with foreigners, he will burn, bomb, rape, and torture indiscriminately. His is the behavior of feral dogs, which humans closely resemble.

Sacrifice? GIs do not make sacrifices. They are sacrificed: sacrificed for big egos, big contracts, for the shareholders of military industries, for pasty patriots in salons who never wore boots. They fight not for love of country but to stay alive and from fear of the punishments meted out to deserters. If you doubt this, tell the men in Afghanistan that they may come home on the next plane without penalty, and see how many stay. Troops are as manipulated as roosters in a cockfight, forced to choose between combat and the pot.

Always, to understand the bloody absurdity of the military, bear in mind the primitive, overriding instinct of mankind to form packs and fight other packs. It is the only drive that can at times take precedence over sex. Thus we have tribes, football teams, Crips and Bloods, religious wars, rabid political parties, and patriotism, this latter being by far the worst.

Nowadays a high moral pretext for war will be contrived, embodying saccharine goodness and nauseous piety. We kill them to make them free, butcher their families because they must be democratic. The race has accumulated just enough fragile decency to want a noble pretext before burning children. Yet the pack’s hostility to outsiders remains the primary drive behind wars, with reasons hung on later like Christmas ornaments.

While soldiers quickly come to hate their assigned enemies, as do fighting cocks, they also know that what they are doing will not play well back home. The entrails-dripping gut shot, a woman leaning over a mound of red mush that is no longer precisely her child — these could interfere with the flow of contracts. Consequently, militaries try furiously to suppress photographs of those they torture and mutilate, to package routine atrocities as “isolated incidents,” to keep pictures of garishly altered soldiers off the pages of newspapers. The extreme sensitivity suggests moral uneasiness, oo-rah or not. During Vietnam, the damning photos poured out. The controlled press of today poses no similar problem.

If this is honor, I’ll pass. Oo-rah.

read the whole article: http://original.antiwar.com/reed/2011/11/01/honor-sacrifice-and-oth...

U.S. Army Assaults One of Its Own
by David Swanson
Oct 2011

Aristine Maharry is 29 years old and now lives in Freedom Plaza.

Maharry's family did not encourage her to aspire to a military career.

She graduated from high school at 18 in the year 2000. ...

She arranged to train at Fort Leonardwood in Missouri. She headed there in December 2004, leaving behind a husband and two little boys for the holidays. Aristine says it was a very sad time for her, very difficult, and also very cold in Missouri. She signed up to become a combat medic, hoping to care for injured soldiers.

Aristine was doing pushups along with the other privates. It was dark. Fontana, one of her drill sergeants, came up behind her and kicked her hard repeatedly in the pelvis. The next morning, with her 50-pound rucksack, Aristine was not able to keep up on the run in her usual way. One of the drill sergeants, Harris, told her she would have to report to "sick call."

That night, Private Barr came and got Maharry. The two of them went to the military police (MP) and told their stories of abuse. The MPs sent them right back without indicating that they would not do anything at all. The reports that the MPs took down may or may not still exist among their records.

The next morning Aristine reported to sick call. An X-ray showed a fractured pelvis. Aristine was put in the Army hospital on the base from January 8, 2005 to February 1st or 2nd, immobilized in bed with a morphine drug for pain. She was then sent on 30-day convalescent leave with heavy pain killers. If she did not return after the 30 days, she was told, the Army would come and find her. Through the course of her initial processing and training, she had already been advised repeatedly that going AWOL (absent without official leave) was punishable by anything up to death.

Aristine says she was "terrified" and "scared to death." She didn't tell her husband what had happened, as she was afraid that if he raised the issue she would be punished when she returned to the Army. When she did return, she pleaded with a physical therapist not to send her back to the same unit. It turned out that it was standard practice not to do that. Aristine worked hard, she says, to recover fast in the Physical Therapy Rehabilitation Program (PTRP) because those who did not, the "hold-overs," would be kept in separate rooms in barracks with their units' drill sergeants and would often be raped. Aristine did not use the word "rape" but indicated sex that was unwanted. "Rape" or "command rape" is an accurate term.

Unfortunately, the First Sergeant for the same Company she had been in before came and requested that Aristine return to the same unit. She passed a test and was returned. Once back, she was kept in a separate room, but resisted the drill sergeants' attempts at sex, she says. A couple of female holdovers, she says, were also kept in private rooms. They would be taken out at night, and would cry endlessly when they were returned.

Aristine was now in the fourth week of training, with the same company, platoon, and drill sergeants. Aristine was miserable, terrified, and "crying, crying, crying." "How," she asked herself, "could they send me back here?" The First Sergeant told her: "You'd better not open your mouth about what happened last time." Maharry was still on lots of pain medicine and suffering mental pain as well.

Drill Sergeant Davis said to whole platoon, as Aristine recalls: "It does not matter what happens in a room as long as two or more of you have the same story. That's the party line."

Aristine, like every private, slept with her weapon, knew its parts and how to assemble it, and gave it a name. Her gun was called "Blue."

Aristine was treated to particular abuse through these weeks. She was frequently awakened during the night and deprived of sleep. For weeks, she resisted the advances of the First Sergeant, Drill Sergeant Davis, and Drill Sergeant Kitchen. Aristine learned to sleep sitting straight up in the daytime.

During the final week, the First Sergeant called for her at night and said "We know what you did with your battle buddy" and "We know you're selling pain killers." She had no use for money in basic training, she desperately needed the pain killers, and the accusation named no party she'd sold to or any other details. There were no witnesses, and the accusation was false. There was never any trial or finding, just an accusation. The Army threatened to bring Aristine up on charges under Article 15 of the Universal Code of Military Justice. She refused to sign their forms, and they dropped the matter.

Aristine says that frequently she would cry as her Army superiors threatened her, repeatedly, for weeks. They would point out that she never received any letters in the mail. They claimed that nobody would know if they "took care of her." Remarks included "We know how to make people shut up" and "We can make you be quiet forever." Aristine says she took these as clear threats to kill her or imprison her, and that these threats were offered on multiple occasions.

Aristine injured her arm, and a doctor agreed not to treat her so that she could ship out, which was what she wanted: to escape Missouri.

When I spoke with Aristine this week she said that she was still scared to be speaking about it. This is even more understandable considering the rest of the story.

After graduating, and being denied permission to walk in the graduation ceremony as punishment for the baseless accusation of selling drugs, Aristine shipped out to Fort Sam Houston near San Antonio, Texas. She was treated for her arm injury. She could not be sent on convalescent leave again so soon. Instead, she was sent to wait for a review by a medical board.

She tried to quit the Army with no benefits. Aristine went to a psychiatric clinic and said she was considering suicide. She really was. The clinic made her sign a statement that she would not kill herself. Then they sent her right back to hurry up and wait for the medical board.

Aristine left most of her possessions behind and went AWOL.

Before joining up, Aristine had contacted both of her parents. Her father had never spoken about Vietnam. He now said "I saw things in the Army that no one should ever be exposed to." He told her not to do it. She took that as fatherly protection and thought to herself "I'm stronger than he thinks." He had received medals in Vietnam, she points out, but he'd also returned with "shell shock" or PTSD. Loud sounds would cause him to throw something or hit someone. He suffered tunnel vision in crowded places, and Aristine says she had the same symptom for a while.

Aristine went AWOL on July 5th ("my independence day"). She went to Florida and picked up three jobs, and then a job in New York. But in New York in November 2006, she had a checkbook stolen and reported it to the police. She did not face prosecution for going AWOL. But she was required to report to Fort Knox in Kentucky and sign out, along with many others in her same position -- many women and men too, all suffering injuries, many from training and some from combat. They were made to put on Army uniforms and ordered about. She had to write out her story for a judge. She was told she could not speak with a judge. She was not told she could hire a lawyer. The Army may still have the report she wrote out. She was given a less than honorable discharge.

Aristine tried to reconcile with her husband. They tried counseling. She did not believe she could become pregnant anymore. But she did, and the pregnancy was very hard on her, her third son being born a month early. Doctors told her insurance would not cover problems related to military injuries. So Aristine went to the Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA) and asked to change her discharge to honorable and to obtain health coverage. She again had to write down her whole story, and this time she left a copy with her birth mother. She was now advised that she could have had a lawyer at Fort Knox.

Aristine is now on her own, but has joined together with a growing crowd of activists opposing the entire direction in which our war economy is dragging our nation and the world. Many people are finding the strength to tell their stories, and finding power in joining them together with others'.


The FBI Announces Gangs Have Infiltrated Every Branch Of The Military
Robert Johnson | Oct. 22, 2011
[Business Insider]

The FBI has released a new gang assessment announcing that there are 1.4 million gang members in the US, a 40 percent increase since 2009, and that many of these members are getting inside the military (via Stars and Stripes).

The report says the military has seen members from 53 gangs and 100 regions in the U.S. enlist in every branch of the armed forces. Members of every major street gang, some prison gangs, and outlaw motorcycle gangs (OMGs) have been reported on both U.S. and international military installations.

>From the report:

Through transfers and deployments, military-affiliated gang members expand their culture and operations to new regions nationwide and worldwide, undermining security and law enforcement efforts to combat crime. Gang members with military training pose a unique threat to law enforcement personnel because of their distinctive weapons and combat training skills and their ability to transfer these skills to fellow gang members.

The report notes that while gang members have been reported in every branch of service, they are concentrated in the U.S. Army, Army Reserves, and the Army National Guard.

Many street gang members join the military to escape the gang lifestyle or as an alternative to incarceration, but often revert back to their gang associations once they encounter other gang members in the military. Other gangs target the U.S. military and defense systems to expand their territory, facilitate criminal activity such as weapons and drug trafficking, or to receive weapons and combat training that they may transfer back to their gang. Incidents of weapons theft and trafficking may have a negative impact on public safety or pose a threat to law enforcement officials.

The FBI points out that many gangs, especially the bikers, actively recruit members with military training and advise young members with no criminal record to join the service for weapon access and combat experience.


Post-World War II Servicemen’s Strike Wave (1945)

When thinking of uprisings, rarely do military men come to mind. Internationally, rebel servicemen have been indispensible to any successful revolution. America has its own domestic examples of military resistance, perhaps most notably the strike wave against redeployment following World War II.

While primarily centered around the British Empire’s servicemen, American servicemen also demonstrated and struck in favor of repatriation and against redeployment to fight Chinese Communist forces at the end of World War II. In occupied Germany and the Philippines, American soldiers, sailors and marines went on strike and held mass parades asserting that their fight was over and demanding repatriation.

The strikes show the power of the military for progressive social change. This lesson would prove incredibly powerful for the next generation of American servicemen.

Serviceman Resistance to the Vietnam War

While American popular memory enshrines the student protestors as the cause of the Vietnam War’s end, the movement really played a tertiary role in ending the war. Far more important was the defeat of the American military on the battlefield. This would have been impossible without a massive assist from American servicemen.

According to military figures, over half a million soldiers deserted or defected during the Vietnam War. Protest newspapers sprung up like mushrooms after rain and “FTA” (fuck the army) became an unofficial slogan. Short stints in military prison became a badge of honor. The military definitely noticed the movement. Editors and organizers or protest newspapers received stiff prison sentences. The movement’s crowning moment was arguably the 1968 Long Bihn Jail (“LBJ Ranch”). The number of refused orders, either because soldiers felt imperiled or because the orders given were illegal, would be impossible to count. By the Nixon era, company after company refused to fight. The aircraft carrier Constellation cast a ballot refusing deployment to Vietnam.

The movement made continued involvement in the Vietnam War literally impossible. The resistance movement further acted as an inspiration to current-day servicemen organizations like Iraq Veterans Against the War.


The Tulsa Peace Fellowship's Counter-Recruitment Update/Digest, for Nov 2011
page 2

Drones on Trial: 38 Protesters Face Charges For Disrupting Syracuse Base Used in Overseas Attacks

War criminals at Hancock Airbase in upstate New York on trial, as pro se activists and former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark argue "military drones" (unarmed aerial vehicles, or UAVs) contravene Nuremberg principles of international law.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting the CIA has made a series of secret concessions in its drone campaign after military and diplomatic officials complained large strikes were damaging the fragile U.S. relationship with Pakistan. Meanwhile, a trial is underway in Syracuse, New York, of 38 protesters arrested in April at the New York Air National Guard base at Hancock Field. The defendants were protesting the MQ-9 Reaper drones, which the 174th Fighter Wing of the Guard has remotely flown over Afghanistan from Syracuse since late 2009. "Citizens have a responsibility to take action when they see crimes being committed," said retired Col. Ann Wright, one of the 38 on trial. "And this goes back to World War II, when German government officials knew what other parts of the German government were doing in executing six million Jews in Germany and other places. That they took no action, and yet they were held responsible later through the Nuremberg trials. And that is the theory on which we are acting: That we see that our government is committing crimes by the use of these drones and that we, as citizens, have the responsibility to act."


Col. Ann Wright (Ret.), one of the "Hancock 38 Drone Resisters" who protested the use of MQ-9 Reaper drones at the Air National Guard base at Hancock Field in Syracuse, New York, last April. Wright is a retired U.S. Army colonel and former U.S. diplomat who spent 29 years in the military and later served as a high-ranking diplomat in the State Department. In 2001, she helped oversee the reopening of the U.S. mission in Afghanistan. In 2003, she resigned her State Department post to protest the war in Iraq.

Ed Kinane, one of the "Hancock 38 Drone Resisters" who protested the use of MQ-9 Reaper drones at the Air National Guard base at Hancock Field in Syracuse, New York, last April. He is a member of the Syracuse Peace Council.

To watch the interview online or for a trancript, go to:





file under : "friendly fire"
Multiple missteps led to drone killing U.S. troops in Afghanistan

6 Nov 2011

Thirty-one seconds after the pilot reported muzzle flashes, the Marines at Alcatraz ordered that the Predator be prepared to strike if the shooters could be confirmed as hostile. At 8:49 a.m., 29 minutes after the ambush began, they authorized the pilot to fire.

In minutes, two Americans would be dead.

The decision to fire a missile from one of the growing fleet of U.S. unmanned aircraft is the result of work by ground commanders, pilots and analysts at far-flung military installations.

The video feed used can also prompt commanders to make decisions before they fully understand what they're seeing.

In February 2009, a crew operating a drone over Afghanistan misidentified a civilian convoy as an enemy force. The Predator pilot and the Army captain who called in the airstrike disregarded warnings from Air Force analysts who had observed children in the convoy. At least 15 people were killed.

The Pentagon investigation into the deaths of Smith and Rast, the first friendly-fire deaths known to have been caused by a drone attack, was led by Marine Col. Randy Newman, a former regimental commander in Afghanistan.

The commander of the 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion, Lt. Col. L.K. Hussey, declined to be interviewed.

Newman's report said the analysts should have been more aggressive in raising their concerns in the minutes before the missile attack. But the analysts said they were trained not to intercede when U.S. troops were in danger unless they saw women and children present, or evidence of a possible war crime.

At the Pentagon, a senior Marine officer described the decision to launch the missile as "a rush to judgment."

After the Predator pilot learned of the fatal mistake, he asked to be relieved at the controls. "The gravity of the matter overcame my ability to continue focusing on the task at hand," he explained.

Replaying the video and voice communications, he was stunned to see that the muzzle flashes were aimed away from the road. He was "completely confused as to how I saw exactly the opposite sitting in the seat."

He asked for the video to be stopped and left the building. An Air Force chaplain was waiting outside.


The Tulsa Peace Fellowship's Counter-Recruitment Update/Digest, for Nov 2011

who we are:

The Tulsa Peace Fellowship is the activist wing of the peace movement in Eastern Oklahoma.  TPF offers citizens and community groups tools and resources to participate personally in our democracy, to help shape federal budget and policy priorities, and to promote peace, social and economic justice, and human rights.   TPF is a registered non-profit organization and a non-partisan civic-sector organization, loosely affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Restoration, north side of Tulsa.

"Waging Peace One Person at a Time (& Leaving War to the Ants)".

Through its counter-recruitment task force, TPF is a member of the National Network in Opposition to the Militarization of Youth (NNOMY) representing some 188 counter-recruitment groups in cities and towns across the country. On the web

You can check out our main social media tool here: http://tulsapeacefellowship.ning.com/ (since 2009) 

Also still going strong:  our announcement list on yahoo!  tulsapeace@yahoogroups.com (since 2002)  Go to: http://groups.yahoo.com/ and search for "tulsapeace"

TPF needs your support.

You can donate online via PINC (pull down menu for US$ donations)

Or, please mail a check or money order made out to the"Tulsa Peace Fellowship" to :

The Tulsa Peace Fellowship
c/o UU Church of the Restoration,
1314 N. Greenwood Ave, Tulsa Oklahoma. 74106-4854
Find on a map: Google Maps link

Contributions to TPF are not tax deductible at the present time. Details on tax status available.

The next monthly anti-war demo in Tulsa
is scheduled for
Saturday Dec 3rd, 2011, 12noon to 2pm, with the theme: "U.S. Out of Afghanistan Now!"
Details online:

Come join us!  

The information provided in this digest/update herein is for non-profit use only, according to "fair use" doctrine.  Copyright and all commercial exploitation rights remain with the various authors/publishers cited above. The Tulsa Peace Fellowship does not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the articles appearing herein.

further information



Ten excellent reasons not to join the military:
a. You May Be Killed, Even By Mistake
b. You May Kill Others Who Do Not Deserve to Die
c. You May Be Injured
d. You May Not Receive Proper Medical Care
e. You May Suffer Long-term Health Problems
f. You May Be Lied To
g. You May Face Discrimination
h. You May Be Asked to Do Things Against Your Beliefs
i. You May Find It Difficult to Leave the Military
j. You Have Other Choices, including the Choice to Learn a Marketable Skill

for more info:

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