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Peace & Nonviolence

Steve Breen | Afghani Progress After Nine Years / Slate.com

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National Guard advert on Metrodome, proposed site of 2012 DNC, depicts soldiers deployed against protesters during 2008 RNC

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  • Will someone like Jon Stewart see the dark humor in such a sick game pushing our macho buttons but frankly only hurting ourselves?
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  • Lake Woebegone didn’t know what hit it.
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flyingmonkeyairlines,  Twin Cities Indie Media

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Coleen Rowley

(L) Original caption: Minnesota National Guard Soldiers with the 1st Combined Arms Battalion, 194th Armor stand guard to assist police in maintaining order during an overly-aggressive demonstration Sept. 1, in St. Paul, Minn. The demonstrators were protesting during day one of the Republican National Convention. (Photo: Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo)

A National Guard advertisement currently hanging on the side of the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, MN, proposed site of the 2012 Democratic National Convention, depicts National Guard members being deployed against protesters during the 2008 Republican National Convention in Saint Paul, Minnesota (hi-res photos for media use at bottom of page).

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The multiple-panel advertisement, which stretches around the Metrodome, depicts various Viking players above the text, "First line of defense." Other panels depict members of the National Guard, above text that reads "Minnesota National Guard... Minnesota's first line of defense."

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The panel depicting National Guard members and a helicopter is a composite image derived in part from a September 1st, National Guard press image taken by Master Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo, and depicts some of the 150 National Guard members being deployed against protesters during Day One of the 2008 Republican National Convention in St. Paul, MN.

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Oh my gosh, can you believe the truth behind this National Guard ad at the Metrodome?, Coleen Rowley, Evergreene Digest
Thought you might be interested in reporting on and further exposing this remarkable catch made by someone who saw the National Guard photo recruitment ad interspersed as it is with the other same purple color Minnesota Vikings football “front line of defense” posters ringing the Metrodome.  It turns out that the same photo of the Minnesota Guard was taken when they were deployed at the Republican National Convention and were involved in a mass arrest of Minnesota citizens who were innocent of anything except listening to some music?!  Will someone like Jon Stewart see the dark humor in such a sick game pushing our macho buttons but frankly only hurting ourselves?  Lake Woebegone didn’t know what hit it.

If you liked reading this article, consider contributing a cuppa jove to Evergreene Digest--using the donation button in the above right-hand corner—so we can bring you more just like it.

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Upcoming Peace Events! October 13, 2010

Upcoming Peace Events! October 13, 2010

Bring the Troops Home Now!...Echoes of Peace Twin Cities Choir...Civil Rights and Effective Investigations...Armistice Day, 2010...Protest the School of the Americas!

Coleen Rowley, Evergreene Digest

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\r\nStarting up Echoes of Peace Twin Cities Choir, Created By Sara Thomsen

Thursday, October 21 · 7:00pm - 9:00pm, Richfield United Methodist Church, 5835 Lyndale Ave S., Minneapolis, MN

Meeting the third Thursdays of the month Oct-December. Anyone with a desire to sing is welcome to join this non-audition community choir. Our repertoire will include songs from around the world, songs of justice and peace, songs of hope and longing, and songs that are simply fun and full of celebration. No previous singing experience required, you don’t need to know how to read music, and you won’t have to sing all by yourself! ...

Singing in harmony with others is a means of personal, local and, yes, even global transformation. Singing opens the heart and re-enchants the spirit. It’s good for your brain, good for your body and great for your emotional health. Harmony brings harmony!

Sara Thomsen has been directing Echoes of Peace in the Twin Ports of Duluth/Superior (her home base) since March of 2002. She continues with the Duluth choir to this day, and is now beginning a new choir “branch” in the Twin Cities, starting with a monthly practice session. The first session is Thursday, Oct 21.

About the director: Sara Thomsen is a singer-songwriter, recording artist and producer, and a composer/arranger in addition to her role as director and community song leader. Sara is a founding member of the Ubuntu Choirs Network, a "growing community of choirs who believes that the joy of singing is a universal birthright, and that together, regardless of musical background, we can help improve the world by joining voices in song" (www.ubuntuchoirs.net). The network was founded by Shivon Robinsong and Denis Donnelly, co-directors of the Gettin' Higher Choir in Victoria, B.C. Canada. Sara is a graduate of their Community Choir Leadership Training.

The details and how to join:
Time: 7:00-8:45pm
Dates: Thursdays October 21, November 18, December 16 (Third Thursdays of the month)
Cost: $30 for the three sessions. Checks payable to: Echoes of Peace Choir
Location: Richfield United Methodist Church, 5835 Lyndale Ave S., Minneapolis, MN

If interested, send Sara an email or just show up the first night (Oct 21). You are welcome to “feel it out” on your first session before making the commitment plunge!
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“Civil Rights and Effective Investigations,” Coleen Rowley

Friday, October 22, 7:30 p.m. Twin Cities Friends Meeting House, 1725 Grand Avenue, St. Paul. Coleen Rowley exposed the FBI’s mishandling of information related to the 9/11 attacks and was named one of Time Magazine’s Persons of the Year in 2002. Coleen is a staunch member of Minnesota’s peace community. Endorsed by: WAMM. FFI: Call Don, 612-724-3061.
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Armistice Day 2010, Veterans for Peace

Come join the Veterans for Peace Chapter 27 in the ringing of bells November 11.  For 25 years we have celebrated the joy felt around the world when the World War I Armistice was signed the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, 1918, to honor the end of a war considered so horrendous it must never happen again.  Yet it continues.

As was done back then for many years, we ring the bell 11 times at 11 a.m., November 11, followed by a moment of silence for the many soldiers and civilians killed in warfare, and with a commitment to find our own ways to work for peace in our environment.

If your building houses a large bell that can ring out to the community at 11 a.m. on November 11, please consider doing that.  If not, please read the statement below and ring a handbell during your service the Saturday or Sunday before November 11.  If you'd like help with a longer program, we have speakers available who can do the ceremony and talk on the spiritual importance of peacemaking.

Whatever is done, please read this statement aloud and print it in your bulletin:

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The Armistice of 1918 ended the terrible slaughter of World War I.  The U.S. alone had experienced the death of over 116,000 soldiers, plus many more who were physically and mentally disabled.  For one moment, at the 11th hour of the llth day on the llth month, the world agreed that World War I must be the war to end all wars.  There was exuberant joy everywhere, and many churches rang their bells, some 11 times at 11 a.m. on November 11, as the Armistice was signed.

It went on for many years, and then it was forgotten, but now we do this again.  We ring the bells 11 times, with a moment of silence, to remember the many soldiers and civilians killed in warfare, and to make our own commitment to work for peace in our family, our community, our nation, and our world.

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FFI: Larry Johnson, President, VFP Chapter 27 <elent7@comcast.net > or 612-747-3904.
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Reserve Your Spot Today: Protest the School of the Americas, Veterans for Peace, Chapter 27.

November 19 through 22 Fort Benning, GA. Veterans for Peace, Chapter 27, has openings on their bus for the annual trip to close the School of the Americas (SOA). Bus Cost: $200.00. Room Cost: $50.00 per person. The chartered bus will leave St. Stephen's Church, 2201 Clinton Avenue South, Minneapolis on Friday, November 18, 8:00 a.m. and will return there the following Monday, November 22 at about 5:00 p.m. Space is limited. FFI and Reservations: Call Jim Steinhagen, 612-722-1112.

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Senate report: Mismanaged U.S. contractor money aids enemy in Afghanistan

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  • The Senate investigation documents a failure to properly vet, train and supervise Afghan security subcontractors, hired by U.S. and other international firms under multimillion-dollar military contracts, afailure has cost American lives, undermined the U.S. mission and the Afghan government, and "helped play into the hands of the enemy," said Sen. Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
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  • How the US Funds the Taliban
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  • The Best Allies Money Can Buy
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  • What You Didn't Know About The Afghan War
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Karen DeYoung, Washington Post | DC

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Ken Mitchell

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The U.S. military has only minimal knowledge of - and exercises virtually no control over - the thousands of Afghans it indirectly pays to guard its installations, including "warlords and strongmen linked to murder, kidnapping, bribery" and to the Taliban, Senate investigators said in a blistering report released Thursday (Oct 7).

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The bipartisan report, compiled after a year-long investigation, notes that the military has recently launched its own investigations of the situation and has taken some steps to address it. In one of the most significant steps, Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, has issued new contractor guidelines.

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How the US Funds the Taliban, Aram Roston, The Nation
In 'grotesque carnival,' contractors pay insurgents to protect supply lines.

The Best Allies Money Can Buy, Thomas L. Friedman,  New York Times | NY

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  • I prefer our public services to be provided as much as possible by public servants motivated by, and schooled in, the common good and simple patriotism — not profits or private ambitions.
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  • No precise number for contractors in Iraq, Afghanistan
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What You Didn't Know About The Afghan War, Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Gary Kohls
This is a video in support of  Matthew Hoh, ex-Marine and diplomat who resigned in protest over fraudulent war
"One of the most powerful and concise antiwar videos I've seen: It needs wide distribution." -- Antiwar Activist Gary Kohls

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'This' is the 'Real' Picture of Our War: Isn't it Time?

Today (October 7) is the 1st day of the tenth year of our occupation of Afganhistan.

Coleen Rowley, Evergreene Digest


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Please take a moment and look at these pictures. Really look at them. Not just a cursory glance or a rushed and distracted glance.

Isn’t it heartbreaking looking at them? Isn’t it revolting and outrageous?

Next, please read, process, and think about the following few lines. I mean, really take them in and truly process their meaning and implications.

The severely injured and crippled children in these pictures are innocent victims of ‘our’ bombings in Afghanistan.

We, you and I, paid for every miniscule molecule of the bombs that brought this horror upon these innocent children. We financed the entire assault with our tax money, so are rightfully considered the financiers of what fell upon these innocent children.

Our representatives, the ones we elected and gave power to, decided upon and sanctioned these atrocities on our behalf, and in our name. We, you and I, likewise sanctioned them, and consented to become the financiers of their implementation.

We, you and I, are directly responsible for what you see in these pictures, and much worse and more, and implicating many more.

We, you and I, did ‘this’, and we are still doing it.

Now please tell me, should it matter whether you are pro-choice or pro-life when it comes to ‘this’ and your reaction to ‘this’?

Because if you are prochoice I doubt you’d make ‘this’ a choice of yours; as a decent human being. Or, if you are prolife I seriously doubt you’d sanction and finance ‘this,’ – do ‘this’ to other fellow human beings. After all, isn’t ‘a life a life…’?

Please tell me, should it matter whether you are a conservative or a liberal when it comes to ‘this’ and your reaction to ‘this’?

Because if you are a true conservative I believe you would be pro-defense not pro-offense, and offenses such as ‘this’ would offend you a great deal. And if you consider yourself a liberal, then I assume you hold high a human’s right to live and exist with dignity, no matter who or where they are.

Please tell me, should it matter whether you are a Christian, Jew, Muslim, or Buddhist when it comes to ‘this’ and your reaction to ‘this’?

Because if you truly have faith in the teachings of either Jesus, Moses, Mohammad, or Buddha, you go by their universal teaching and common proclamation that ‘Thou Shall Not Kill,’ not ‘thou shall sanction and condone violence like ‘this’ on ‘innocent lives’ in the name of false security and under the excuse of terror.’

Should it matter whether the children above are Afghans, Mexicans, or Americans? Are these lives worth less than others; less than ours? Wouldn’t have we been livid, fuming with rage and determination to seek justice, even if only one of these innocent children was on our soil attacked by foreign mighty powers, intentionally or not?

So please tell me, why do we stand divided when it comes to ‘this’?

Why is it that we go on sanctioning and financing ‘this,’ these outrageous and revolting offenses that are being brought upon real lives; innocent human lives?

Why can’t we unite on ‘this,’ a truly significant issue that deals with life and death?

Why don’t we put aside other differences, and jointly take a stand, as pro-choice, pro-life, conservative, liberal, Christian, Jew, Muslim, and Buddhist, who should all consider ‘this’ a significant violation of what we believe in?

Isn’t it time? Looking at these pictures, I say it is way past time. Don’t you?

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If you liked reading this article, consider contributing a cuppa jove to Evergreene Digest--using the donation button above—so we can bring you more just like it.

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Give us a cuppa jove...and we'll keep telling you the truth.

Four times a year we launch brief fundraising drives which have provided us with most of our annual budget. Can you help now with a small contribution? For the cost of a cuppa jove a month, we'll keep telling you the truth. Is it a deal?

Dear readers of Evergreene Digest,

When we launched Evergreene Digest 5  years ago our goal was ambitious for 2005:  to be the preferred one-stop on-line source for women, communities of color, working people, people with disabilities, veterans, youth, pacifists, GLBT, activists, spiritual seekers, progressives, environmentalists, youth, veterans, and other groups ignored by the mainstream media as legitimate audiences, sources, and subjects for the news.

We knew we wanted it to be free for our readers. And, we knew it would take a small staff of professionals to continually provide high-quality information 365-days a year.

Our bottom line dilemma: How would we fund it?

We could sell advertising. We could rely on big foundation grants. We could have corporate "co-sponsors". We could find a rich "sugar-mama or daddy." We could build a big email list and rent it to the highest bidders.

That would have been the easy, and inappropriate,  way.

But we decided to fund Evergreene Digest differently. Believing small is beautiful,  we seek thousands of small contributors, provide them with a high-quality product, and trust that the progressive community has our back as we moved forward.

No catering to advertisers because we don't have any. No need to avoid controversial issues that could upset a few wealthy donors because we don't have any. No steering of our agenda to fit a foundation's funding priority because we don't have any.

And it's working! We've managed to build a small but very dedicated group of readers and supporters who have pitched in over the years in many ways to keep us afloat and support our work. Relying on small contributions from our readers not only guarantees us the independence to speak truth to power - but it helps keep us in touch - and on our toes - with our growing community of supporters.

Four times a year we launch brief fundraising drives which have provided us with most of our annual budget. Can you help now with a small contribution? For the cost of a cuppa jove a month, we'll keep telling you the truth. Is it a deal?

To make a secure, online donation with your  PayPal account, click on the 'Donation' button in the upper right-hand corner, and follow the instructions.  Or, send a check through the mail, payable to “Evergreene Digest” c/o  David Culver, 460 5th Avenue North, #428, Hopkins, MN, 55343-7260.

Carl Sandburg once said: "Nothing happens unless first a dream." We know you share our dream of a more open, peaceful, just and progressive society. Of course it won't be easy but we believe we can make it happen - because we must!  And because 'necessity is the mother of invention', we believe that if we continue to work together, we will make our dreams a reality.

Please donate today and help bring the progressive dream to life. If you can't help financially, help by spreading the word about Evergreene Digest and/or contributing material for publication.

We can't do it without you. With a big thanks to small contributors,

Sincerely,

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US troops are still dying in two Mission Impossibles

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  • In Iraq, Obama says it's over but it's not
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  • In Afghanistan, who wants to die for Karzai?
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Jim Hightower, Hightower Lowdown

At long last, it's over. In the pre-dawn hours of August 18--seven years, two months, and 18 days after George W strapped on a flight suit to peacock around at a photo-op that declared "Mission Accomplished"--the Army's 4th Stryker Brigade crossed the border into Kuwait. Stryker was the last US combat unit in Iraq, and its border cross-ing marked the official end of Bush's god-awful war.

The American combat mission in Iraq has ended," President Obama solemnly announced to the nation a few days later. "We have met our responsibility. Now, it is time to turn the page."

No doubt Sgt. Brandon E. Maggart would love to do just that, but he can't. He's dead. The 24-year-old Sgt. Maggart, from Kirksville, Missouri, was killed in action in southern Iraq on August 22--giving him the unfortunate distinction of being the first US soldier to die in Iraq after the war "ended." Sadly, he won't be the last.

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How propaganda is used in the U.S. to control it citizens

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  • This video can provide a one and one-half hour of a Marketing 101 class on how rulers govern.
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  • The End of America? Naomi Wolf Thinks It Could Happen
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Jack Finley, Veterans for Peace

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Bob Heberle

I'm Jack Finley, 76 years old, President of VFP 067 in the Los Angeles-Long Beach, CA, Harbor area. I was drafted between Korea and Vietnam. Four months ago on three occasions I came close to dying and this has prompted me to write my memoir to try and explain to anyone who is interested in finding out those few things that I have learned so far.

One of the most important things that I have learned was just this last week in a video that explains how come we are in such a mess and I recommend that everyone watch it and pass it on to their friends.

Here is the address.

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The End of America? Naomi Wolf Thinks It Could Happen, Don Hazen, AlterNet
An interview with author Naomi Wolf, whose new book, "The End of America: Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot," may confirm your worries about democracy in America.
If we want an open society, she warns, we must pay attention and we must fight to protect democracy.

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