National Peace Conference
The National Peace Conference, took place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in downtown Albany New York, July 2010. Many workshops are scheduled and many leaders of the peace and progressive movements will be there: Cindy Sheehan, Kathy Kelly, Medea Benjamin, Ann Wright, Dahlia Wasfi, Leila Zand, Michael McPhearson, Kevin Martin, David Swanson, Glen Ford, and many others.
LaVena Johnson of Florissant, Mo., was only 19 years old when she died in Iraq in 2005. The Army said Private Johnson committed suicide, but her family has objected to that ruling. They believe that LaVena was raped and murdered.
LaVena Johnson: The Silent Truth, a documentary that tells the story of the Johnson family’s struggle to find the truth about their daughter’s death, premiered Nov. 10, 2010, in Moore Auditorium, Webster University, to a full house. A question and answer session with Dr. John Johnson, LaVena’s father; Joan Brooker-Marks, the film’s director; and Col. (Ret.) Ann Wright, co-author of Dissent: Voices of Conscience, followed the screening.
Co-sponsors of the premiere were the Year of International Human Rights 2010-11: Women’s Rights, Veterans for Peace, The Organization for Black Struggle, and the Office of Congressman William Lacy Clay. Dennis Lane, executive director of Veterans for Peace, introduced the film.
Bradley Manning Support Network Advisory Board
- Medea Benjamin, Code Pink: Women for Peace
- Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, board member for the National Whistleblower Center
- Daniel Ellsberg, Pentagon Papers whistleblower
- Kathleen Gilberd, Co-Chair of the Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild
- Mike Gravel, former United States Senator (D-AK)
- Kimber Heinz, War Resisters League
- Birgitta Jónsdóttir, Member of the Icelandic Parliament
- Ray McGovern, former CIA analyst and activist
- Michael Moore, documentary filmmaker, author and activist
- Jose Vasquez, Iraq Veterans Against the War
- Ann Wright, US Army Colonel (retired)
Against NATO Summit
According to an April 2012 press release from Lauren Love, Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, and Eric Ruder, Coalition Against NATO/G8, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and other community and labor leaders will gather on Thursday, April 19, at 11:15 am on the 2nd floor of City Hall to announce their plans to march in opposition to NATO. The march will take place on Sunday, May 20, which is the first day of the NATO summit, and is being organized by the Coalition Against NATO/G8 War and Poverty Agenda (CANG8).
Standing with Rev. Jackson to announce their support for the march and People’s Summit will be Occupy Chicago; the Chicago Teachers Union; the National Nurses United; and members of the Service Employees International Union.
“Our world has become jilted by war and weapons,” said Rev. Jackson. “There is simply too much violence, too much concentrated wealth and too much poverty. I hope on May 20 there will be a large demonstration with global participation. It’s time we go in a different direction. I am urging us to shift our priorities. This demonstration is designed to appeal to the leaders of the world to choose to depend less on military intervention and more on negotiations to try to heal these societies ravished by poverty and internal strife.”
CANG8 organizers are pleased to be joined in their efforts by many other community and labor leaders in addition to Rev. Jackson. “ “This march will take place at a crucial moment in NATO’s war on Afghanistan as a majority of Americans have now turned against further U.S. involvement there,” said Joe Iosbaker, a CANG8 organizer.
Many nurses from the Chicago area and beyond have been active in the Occupy movement and in challenging budgets that prioritize war spending over public health. “As an ER nurse, I see the suffering of the 99 percent firsthand,” said Dennis Kosuth, a registered nurse at Stroger Cook County Hospital. “The global 1 percent and the G8 are calling for austerity cuts to vital social services while draining trillions of our tax dollars into the NATO war machine. Our tax dollars should be going into our public schools, healthcare services, libraries, public transportation—back to the people of Main Street. Registered Nurses of the National Nurses United will be marching alongside CANG8 this May to protest NATO and to call for a Robin Hood Tax on the G8 global 1 percent.”
Christine Boardman is the president of Service Employees International Union Local 73, which represents 25,000 public employees in Illinois and Indiana, and she is urging union members and working people to attend the protest in large numbers. “G8 policies have supported so-called ‘free trade agreements,’ which have caused the loss of millions of jobs,” said Boardman. “Instead of funding for war and supporting ‘free trade’ for corporations, which means ‘slave trade’ for workers, it must become our national priority to keep good jobs here and to fund services for our communities.”
Other noted speakers at the May 20 march and the People’s Summit include Malalai Joya, former Afghan member of Parliament and internationally renowned opponent of NATO’s occupation of Afghanistan; Reiner Braun, International Coordinating Committee of the European No to NATO network; Kathy Kelly, Voices for Creative Nonviolence; Malik Mujahid, Muslim Peace Coalition; Medea Benjamin, Code Pink; and Col. Ann Wright (ret.), antiwar activist.
In addition to specifying Jesse Jackson, , speakers will now include, along with those announced earlier: Leah Bolger, head of Veterans for Peace, who was recently tried for “disrupting” the so-called SuperCommittee in Congress; Carlos Montes, who was targeted by an FBI raid in Los Angeles; Kari Fulton, of the Environmental Justice movement; and Larry Holmes, of International Action Center.
Peace Action Advisory Board
Peace Action Advisory Board as of 2014;
- Christine Ahn, Korea Policy Institute
- Medea Benjamin, Code Pink
- Phyllis Bennis, Institute for Policy Studies
- Julian Bond, Chairman Emeritus of the NAACP
- Blanche Weisen Cook, Distinguished Professor of History, John Jay College
- David Cortright, Fourth Freedom Forum
- Daniel Ellsberg, Activist
- Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, Retired Auxiliary Bishop of Detroit
- Bob King, President, United Auto Workers International
- The Rev. Michael A. Kinnamon, School of Theology and Ministry Seattle University
- Fred Mason, Maryland State & DC AFL-CIO
- Frances Fox Piven, Educator
- Pete Seeger, Songwriter and Folk Singer
- Cornel West, Center for African American Studies Princeton University
- Ann Wright, Former U.S. Army Colonel
Rally Against Israeli Violence in Gaza
August 2, 2014 Rally Against Israeli Violence in Gaza, organised by ANSWER Lafayette Park. Speakers included; Osamah Abuirshaid National Coordinator American Muslims for Palestine, Salim Adofo Vice Chair National Black United Front, Lydia Catina Amaya Community Organizer Damayan Migrant Workers Associatio, Mohsin Ansari Chair ICNA Relief USA, Nihad Awad Co-Founder and Exec. Dir. Council on American Islamic Relations, Brian Becker National Director Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER), Mahdi Bray National Director AMERICAN MUSLIM ALLIANCE POLITICAL ACTION, Karina Garcia Organizer Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER), Carol Gay President New Jersey Industrial Union Council, Abbas Falasteen Hamideh Member Cleveland, Tarak Kauff Board Member Veterans for Peace, Alli McCracken National Coordinator CodePink: Women for Peace, Ray McGovern Analyst (Former) Central Intelligence Agency, Carl Messineo, Co-Founder Partnership for Civil Justice, Akbar Muhammad Representative, Nation of Islam, Lucy Murphy Singer, Mike Prysner Veteran Iraq War, Eugene Puryear Member Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER), Tareq Radi Founder George Mason University->Students Against Israeli Apartheid, Khalilah Sabra Executive Director MAS Immigrant Justice Center, Cornel West Professor Emeritus Princeton University->Center for African American Studies, Ann Wright Activist, Fadi Zanayed Attorney Palestinian American Council.
Attempt to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza
The Australian captain of a women-crewed boat, which tried to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza, September 2016, firmly believes the mission was worthwhile.
“It is so easy for the plight of Palestinians to be forgotten in the face of the war in Syria. But the truth is that there is more than one way to wage a war,” Habib said of the giant and illegal concentration camp into which Israel has turned Gaza.
Among the 13 women on the Zaytouna-Olive were Irish Nobel Peace Prize recipient Mairead Maguire, New Zealand Greens parliamentarian Marama Davidson, Algerian MP Samira Douaifia and former US Army Colonel Ann Wright.
The boat was 35 nautical miles from the coast of Gaza when Israeli naval gunships intercepted it on October 5. It was towed to the port of Ashdod, and the women jailed and then deported.
Wendy Goldsmith, a Canadian living in London and one of the coordinators and spokespersons for the Women’s Boat to Gaza, agreed the effort was “very worthwhile”.
“While our goal is always to break the illegal blockade of Gaza, we know that a substantial part of our work is before and after the boat sails — promoting the project and building connections with like-minded individuals and groups internationally and in particular in Gaza,” Goldsmith said.
- Global Thinking ‘LaVena Johnson: The Silent Truth’ Premiere Stirs Discussion
- Bradley Manning Support Network, accessed January 4, 2012
- Rev. Jesse Jackson Announces His Support for anti-NATO Protest in Chicago
- Peace Action Advisory Board
- CSPAN AUGUST 2, 2014 Rally Against Israeli Violence in Gaza
- GLW ‘Proud to have shone the spotlight on Gaza’, says solidarity boat captain Pip Hinman October 20, 2016]