VFP Gainesville Chapter 14

Veterans For Peace

The Pentagon promised citizenship to immigrants who served. Now it might help deport them. – The Washington Post

The “enhanced screening” being implemented for delayed entry foreign nationals with needed skills has no exceptions and is not applied to US born troops even though they may also have a relative who worked for a foreign government or is foreign born. Since all their personal data is on file with the Pentagon these volunteers who hoped for citizenship through military service will be vulnerable to ICE.

The Pentagon is considering a plan to cancel enlistment contracts for 1,000 foreign-born recruits without legal immigration status, knowingly exposing them to deportation, a Defense Department memo shows.The undated action memo, prepared for Defense Secretary Jim Mattis by personnel and intelligence officials at the Pentagon and obtained by The Washington Post, describes potential security threats of immigrants recruited in a program designed to award fast-tracked citizenship in exchange for urgently need

Source: The Pentagon promised citizenship to immigrants who served. Now it might help deport them. – The Washington Post

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Pentagon promised citizenship to immigrants who served. Now it might help deport them. – The Washington Post

Shocking! Federal Prosecutors Apparently Lied About Wikileaks and Chelsea Manning | Law News

Now that the documents unavailable to defense lawyers during her trial have been obtained by the fOIA, it seems all those claims by the Feds about Manning endangering US war games were lies. The U.S. government repeatedly lied about the contents of a classified report about the impact of Chelsea Manning’s leak of U.S. diplomatic cables, that report now shows.

Source: Shocking! Federal Prosecutors Apparently Lied About Wikileaks and Chelsea Manning | Law News

Posted in Empire Watch, Peace | Comments Off on Shocking! Federal Prosecutors Apparently Lied About Wikileaks and Chelsea Manning | Law News

Cartoon: Life during (endless) wartime

This cartoon addresses many issues of endless war as it applies to the chemical weapons attack in Syria. But it misses the major point that no one seems to think it is important to find out exactly who is responsible for the chemical weapons. Even the Mainstream media is asking this question. see the link and comments after the cartoon.

Follow me on Twitter: @tomtomorrow. And please consider joining Sparky’s List!

Source: Cartoon: Life during (endless) wartime

Is this our Gulf of Tonkin for another war in the Middle east? An article in the Chicago Tribune examines the present day evidence about the chemicals used in the Syrian strike. Many questions remain and an investigation needs to be done before proceeding (too late for that!). Check out  the article below.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-syria-chemical-weapons-20170408-story.html

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cartoon: Life during (endless) wartime

Syria’s humanitarian crisis: three ways Trump could help | World news | The Guardian

The Guardian outlines how the US could help Syrians and it starts with welcoming refugees and ends with more foreign humanitarian Aid.

In the wake of Donald Trump’s harsh condemnation of the chemical attack in Syria this week, some of the world’s largest humanitarian groups outlined steps the White House could take to alleviate suffering in the region.

Source: Syria’s humanitarian crisis: three ways Trump could help | World news | The Guardian

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Syria’s humanitarian crisis: three ways Trump could help | World news | The Guardian

Washington’s Supreme Hypocrisy on Chemical Weapons and Civilian Deaths

Professor Juan Cole gives a history of US involvement in chemical weapons in the middle East. Although he includes the use of nucelar weapons in Japan, he omits mention of the largely classified use of chemical weapons “tested” in the Far East and the network of chemical weapons labs located in the US.

The use of chemical weapons by the Syrian Army in Idlib is an atrocity and the pictures of dead children tug at the heart. But the outrage of American politicians inside the beltway about it draws on the myths of American exceptionalism and Alzheimer’s of the political memory. It is also very suspicious in that the loudest voices of sympathy are the ones closest to the US military industrial complex, which has been regretting the missed opportunity of a Syria War.

for a history of US involvement in chemical weapons read on at the link below.

Source: Washington’s Supreme Hypocrisy on Chemical Weapons and Civilian Deaths

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Washington’s Supreme Hypocrisy on Chemical Weapons and Civilian Deaths

Demobilizing America: A Nation Made by War and a Citizenry Unmade By It

Tom Englehardts’ tale of the entanglement of America’s history with war and the question of whether we as a democracy can survive the next one.

In many ways, from its founding the United States has been a nation made by wars. The question in this century is: Will its citizenry and its form of government be unmade by them?

Much of VFP’s understanding of war comes from Vietnam. Englehardt decribes that experience as a launching point for the present day “American Foreign Legion” with approximately 800 bases around the World.

The Age of Demobilization

In the case of America’s wars, there’s a history that helps explain how we ended up in such a situation. It would undoubtedly begin with an American high command facing a military in near revolt in the later Vietnam years and deciding that the draft should be tossed out the window. What was needed, they came to believe, was an “all-volunteer” force (which, to them, meant a no-protest one).

In 1973, President Nixon obliged and ended the draft, the first step in bringing a rebellious citizen’s army and a rebellious populace back under control.  In the decades to come, the military would be transformed — though few here would say such a thing — into something closer to an American foreign legion.  In addition, in the post-9/11 years, that all-volunteer force came to shelter within it a second, far more secretive military, 70,000 strong: the Special Operations Command.  Members of that elite crew, which might be thought of as the president’s private army, are now regularly dispatched around the globe to train literal foreign legions and to commit deeds that are, at best, only half-known to the American people.

These activities have lead to the colonization of America by our own government. With fear and secrecy used to control the populace which once ended the war in Vietnam.

In these years, Americans have largely been convinced that secrecy is the single most crucial factor in national security; that what we do know will hurt us; and that ignorance of the workings of our own government, now enswathed in a penumbra of secrecy, will help keep us safe from “terror.”  In other words, knowledge is danger and ignorance, safety.  However Orwellian that may sound, it has become the norm of twenty-first-century America.

read the article at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2017/04/04/demobilizing-america-nation-made-war-and-citizenry-unmade-it

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Demobilizing America: A Nation Made by War and a Citizenry Unmade By It

Empire Watch: CENTCOM’s AOR

US empire as masterfully described by Andrew Bacevich
http://www.salon.com/2017/03/26/prepare-pursue-prevail-onward-and-upward-with-u-s-central-command_partner/

US Marines shown in Nasariyah in Iraq March 24, 2003. the Marines are back this week fighting to retake control of the city

General Joseph Votel, current commander of CENTCOM decribes his command area or AOR as:

consisting of 20 nations, among them Iran, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan. As the CENTCOM website puts it, without batting a digital eyelash, that AOR “spans more than 4 million square miles and is populated by more than 550 million people from 22 ethnic groups, speaking 18 languages with hundreds of dialects and confessing multiple religions which transect national borders.”

Bacevich helps us interpret this “imperial speak”:

One imagines that there must be another “Department of Defense Dictionary,” kept under lock-and-key in the Pentagon, that dispenses with the bland language and penchant for deceptive euphemisms. That dictionary would define an AOR as “a vast expanse within which the United States seeks to impose order without exercising sovereignty.” An AOR combines aspects of colony, protectorate and contested imperial frontier. In that sense, the term represents the latest incarnation of the informal empire that American elites have pursued in various forms ever since U.S. forces “liberated” Cuba in 1898.

He goes on to imagine the Vietnam conflict in VOR speak:

(Give the Vietnam War the CENTCOM treatment and you would end up with something like this: “Responding to unprovoked North Vietnamese attacks and acting at the behest of the international community, a U.S.-led coalition arrived to provide security to the freely-elected South Vietnamese government, conducting counterinsurgency operations and assisting host nation security forces to provide for their own defense.”

Sound familiar?

Posted in Empire Watch | Tagged , | Comments Off on Empire Watch: CENTCOM’s AOR

US retires Predator drones after 15 years that changed the ‘war on terror’ | World news | The Guardian

The idea that  the US might Build a pipeline through Arlington or use a drone strike in Central Park brings home to the colonial nature of these devices.

The retirement of the antiquated Predator drone MQ-1, which is to be withdrawn from service in July and replaced by the more capable MQ-9 Reaper, is giving military analysts an opportunity to review the mixed history of a weapon that has long been associated with low-cost war, a sense of disembodiment from conflict, and for inflicting a high number of civilian casualties.

Source: US retires Predator drones after 15 years that changed the ‘war on terror’ | World news | The Guardian

Posted in Drones, Empire Watch | Comments Off on US retires Predator drones after 15 years that changed the ‘war on terror’ | World news | The Guardian

‘Worst view in the world’: Banksy opens hotel overlooking Bethlehem wall | World news | The Guardian

As we have often heard that one solution to problems in the middle East hinge on Israel and the West’s relationship with its genocidal policies with the Wet Bank and Gaza. Banksey, stree artist and activist has long been painting his brilliant antiwar comments on that wall. Now her has ramped up his stand by opening a hotel/musem right accross the street from the wall where it divides Bethlehem.

Exclusive: British artist launches Walled Off hotel in hope of bringing Israeli tourists – and dialogue – to West Bank city

Source: ‘Worst view in the world’: Banksy opens hotel overlooking Bethlehem wall | World news | The Guardian

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on ‘Worst view in the world’: Banksy opens hotel overlooking Bethlehem wall | World news | The Guardian

Chelsea Manning: majority of prison sentence commuted by Barack Obama | US news | The Guardian

The whistleblower, who has been imprisoned for six years for leaking state secrets, is now set to go free on 17 May

Source: Chelsea Manning: majority of prison sentence commuted by Barack Obama | US news | The Guardian

We are celebrating!!!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Chelsea Manning: majority of prison sentence commuted by Barack Obama | US news | The Guardian