Saturday, December 29, 2012

From The Pen Of Joshua Lawrence Breslin-Our Homeland The Sea

Funny, he, call him old man of the sea, although that appellation has been done to death in about sixteen different ways not all of them apt as that fits as good as any, thought as he watched out over another endlessly enchanted seascape, this time god-brokered, maybe god-forsaken furious winds driving white-capped waves thundering to ill-prepared but eagerly waiting to be taken like some overripe maiden beaches already filled with flotsam and jetsam, nature’s jimson, from a million previous rages, nature rages now co-mingled with his own benighted rages, how much of his life had revolved around the sea, around trying to get a handles on the sea, trying to see, well, hell at this late date where he fit in, no, where he stood, okay. And then he thought this…
Maybe it was the sheer, hard fact, hard to get around fact anyway, of the transcontinental California night calling after too long an absence, the California be-bop, be-bop, be-bop, praise saint be-bop, our lord and king, late 1960s night, summer of love night and its aftermath when all things were possible and when old Wordsworth had it right, had it poem right, to be young was very heaven, the eternal California be-bop night after years of Maine solitude, of Maine grey-blue-white washed, white-crested, white-capped, foam-flecked Atlantic ocean-flotsam and jetsam strewn waters. After all not all oceans are created the same, just look at the fury-driven ocean in front of him, no friend to man, to beast, or to god, not all oceans speak to one in the same way, speak that siren song whisper, speak hushed tones that no man (and here man means man or woman, okay) dare speak above, nature’s arbitrary law, although they are all old Father (or is it Brother now) Neptune’s thoughtful playgrounds. (Thoughtful for ten thousand thoughtful walks, ten thousand un-thoughtful walks, and eight thousand more or less, indifferent walks, twenty-eight thousand, more or less, chances anyway.

California’s, yes, white-washed, yes, white-crested, yes, white-capped, yes, foam-flecked speak to gentle, warm lapis lazuli blue wealth dreams of the quest, the long buried life long quest for the great blue-pink great American West night, blue-pinked skies of course. Yes maybe it was just that sheer hard fact, hard to get around still, that pushed him, old man of the sea him, out of Eastern white, white to hate the sight of white, snowed-indoors, Eastern gale winds blowing a man against the sand-pebbled seas, and into the endless starless, better, sunless night. Yes, maybe just a change of color, or to color, from the white white whiteness of the sea stretched ,white-etched night. Right down to the shoreline white where the waves devoured night and left their mark, their graffiti mark.

Maybe too it was the sheer, hard fact, he would no longer speak of hard to get facts around since that was enameled into his psyche now, of preparing, against the timetable of that Eastern white night, timetable set and etched by that shoreline outline and that fugitive lover who ravished her shoreline sands and then fled, this and that for the winter California day, and night, the ocean California that set the thoughts of the be-bop night (hell, more than be-bop, be-bop to the nth power suddenly came brain-storming in waves like that turbulent sea over him not seen or heard from since those first summer of love days), and the quest for the blue-pink skies humming once again in the, admittedly, older-boned voyager, voyeur (some snicker dirty old man and save such words as voyeur for the professionals) of dreamed once sultry, steamy nights.

And vivid memories of golden Butterfly Swirl and her sex, her seventeen different little tricks, learned, learned from who knows where, maybe mother ocean but certainly not her former seeking the perfect wave boyfriend- where would that fit into his timetable? Such thoughts, such return thoughts a different proposition, a different proposition altogether, on most days, from preparing to face fierce Maine winter mornings, unaided by the graces, speak freely of the graces please, and forms nature provides its hardier creations. No thoughts today of heavy woolen coats, double-stitched, double-plied, doubled-vested, old nor’ easter worthy, or heavy woolen pants, same chino pants of youth, same black chino pants, no cuffs, except winter weight, not the always summer weight of no knowledge youth (inside sad joke), or heavy boots, heavy clunky rubbery boots mocking against the snow-felt, ocean-edged soft sand streets, or maybe, more in tune with aged-bone recipes heavy-soled, heavy-rubber soled (or was it rubber souled?) running shoes (also known in the wide world of youth as sneakers, better Chuck’s). Of scarves, and caps, full-bodied caps, better seaman’s caps, heavy, wool, dark blue, built to stand against the ocean-stormed waves crashing and thrashing against ships hulls, and gloves, gloves to keep your hands from frosty immobility I need not speak. Or will not speak. Of this I will speak…

A picture of Jimmy Leclerc, remember that name like you remember the seas, like you remember certain tales, like you remember, well, like you remember as best you can , that which somebody told you about but which you did not experience (although Jimmy experiences fill my soul, fill my sea-watching soul even today). Blessed, sainted, sanctified, cradled, born under a certain star, lucky maybe if you believe in making your own luck or having it thrust upon you ,Jimmy, young, maybe four or five, no, five, definitely five, school ready, school ready come fall, mucking around the summertime shoreline mucks, low tide, shoreline white- etched ravishes well up the beach, fetid smells from seven kinds of tanker-passing oil slicks, rancid chemicals from the cross-bay industrial plant, human mucks mixed in from ten thousand , ten thousand (thanks, Sam Coleridge) sources seeping back to shore and mephitic (thanks, Norman Mailer) seeps as well from the close by marshes that guard the approached to the sea. Jimmy, a tow-headed, tow-headed kid, five, portending Adonis and ladies, maybe some Butterfly Swirl and her seventeen little tricks when he gets old enough to know of such tricks, know of teaching such tricks just in case he lands a neophyte, knowing from some savior older brother himself sent to sea at fourteen, or some other worthy sea-mate, that day, that picture day, walking toward the ever-present amateur clam diggers(or maybe professional but it is hard to see how they, or anyone could make a living out of oil slicked, fetid, human mucked clams),high rubber boots, high almost to the crotch (although Jimmy would not have pointed that hard fact out), buckets, small buckets, portending small payloads, sea-rakes, sea-shovels, sea-backs and working against time before the relentless seas come back to cover their own.

And just that day, that low tide and mucks days, he learned a valuable lesson from those vagrant gypsy clam-diggers (literally gypsies, Roma, if you prefer, but just plain ordinary gypsies then, and called so, mostly seen with travelling carnivals and on city sidewalks selling cheap roses for the lady, and maybe their daughters too, selling that is, for they used the clams in some special olio broth magic that kept their race alive in hard times) about only believing half (or less, but that was another lesson another time).He had heard, heard from some older boys who lived up the street (the name of the street not important, not important to the lesson, but maybe, naming will act as an omen, name Taffrail Road evoking long ago wooden ships and sea-farers worthy of the name, sea-ward cousins of that day’s gypsies) and who were interested in girls, as girls, as opposed to boys, and not like Jimmy, Jimmy even then as foils for his child-like schemes, not all evil, not at all, but not in entangling, intertwining way like they spoke of. He asked one of the gypsy diggers if he had seen any submarines around while he was digging. The digger spoken to called to his gyspy partner repeating Jimmy’s question and they both let out with a low groan laugh, then a more hearty one. The first man laughed some more and then said to Jimmy that while there were not many around anymore since the war (World War II for those who are keeping counts on wars, or just trying to keep them straight) since the bloody Germans has been defeated and good riddance (reflecting the decimation of his kindred in Europe who took a serious beating from the bloody bastard Nazis) but he said on certain moonless nights you could see objects that certainly looked like submarines so be watchful, and be careful. So for a couple of months thereafter whenever the moon was low or it was cloudy Jimmy looked out fiercely at the open sea and then after a while went on to other things.
A moonless June night, circa 1961 Jimmy Leclerc is sitting in his brother borrowed 1957 two-toned Chevy (I know, I know said brother should be shot, or worst ,for letting anybody, even a brother, even a brother who spent the whole afternoon turtle-waxing the damn thing borrow his chariot) down at the far end of Seal Rock (name also not important except that Seal Rock says beach, says mystery and says, far end says, that this is the local lovers’ lane for the free-spirits who don’t mind the crowds of cars that dot this place on moonless June nights (and other times too) or mind being seen in a spot that means only one thing, that you will be anywhere from point one to point thirty Monday morning in Olde Saco High school before school “lav” talk, boys’ or girls’ lav accordingly. And this week coming Jimmy and Lorraine, Lorraine Dubois, will receive a number because Jimmy, who long since has learned to believe in making his own luck, has talked his ball and chain sweetie Lorraine into searching for submarines. And searching for them very closely, as it turned out in the back seat of that cherry ’57 Chevy.

Dear Friend,

Season's Greetings from Veterans For Peace!

As the year draws to a close, it is time to let you know how important your support is to our success. We know that at this time of year every non-profit organization is asking for your financial support, but Veterans For Peace is unique - we are the only veterans' organization that works for the abolishment of all war. We use our background as veterans to oppose war and militarism, and speak with an authority that only our experience can bring.

Our strength lies in our organizational structure - we are truly a grassroots organization.

Our members work at the chapter level in their local communities, and via working groups around specific issues like drones and Agent Orange. Our national office serves as a conduit to coordinate grassroots efforts, and to interact and collaborate with other peace and justice organizations nationally and internationally.

In 2012, VFP delegations traveled the world to oppose U.S. foreign policy and to build relationships in other countries. Members spent time in Viet Nam, Pakistan, Guatemala, South Korea, Haiti and all over Europe working with international groups. VFP chartered its first international chapter in London.

VFP has been on the front lines of activism against combat drones by organizing non-violent direct actions at drone bases and manufacturers. Our members were in full force in Chicago protesting the NATO summit, at Fort Benning with the School of the Americas Watch, and at Fort Meade to support whistleblower Bradley Manning.

We wish to thank all of our members and supporters who joined us in promoting peace and opposing war/militarism through email, letters to the editor, and phone campaigns.

Please continue assist us this Holiday Season by making a gift to Veterans For Peace.
Your gift of $40, $75, $100, $1000 or more will help us to continue our mission of promoting peace.

VFP continues to be a leader in the veterans' voice of peace, working to educate US citizens, members of Congress and the general public about the reality of wars and the importance of speedy withdrawals, and committing to provide humanitarian and economic aid.

Grassroots mobilization remains vital to our success, and we look forward to partnering with like-minded individuals/members like you who want to see a new U.S. foreign policy that embodies respect for human rights and promotes international cooperation and peace.

We wish you peace
Veterans For Peace

Veterans For Peace, 216 S. Meramec, St. Louis, MO 63105,

(please forward widely)
Hands off Syria and Iran! End the Drone Wars!
We Need Jobs, Education and Healthcare, Not Endless War!
The ominous signs of impending war with Syria escalate. NATO is massing troops and military equipment on Syria's borders, and preparing to install missiles aimed at Syria. U.S. warships are stationed off Syria’s coast. ‘Special operation’ units are readied. The U.S. government has been supplying arms and logistical support to a few selected Syrian paramilitary groups favored by the U.S. as “replacements” for Assad. The media bombards us with arguments that support foreign intervention, supposedly for “humanitarian reasons”. Like WMD’s in Iraq, alarms are sounded, with no credible evidence, that Assad may unleash chemical weapons, thus establishing a pretext for invasion.
These are the facts that impel us to oppose any military, economic, diplomatic, or covert intervention aimed at controlling the internal affairs of Syria or any other country:
· The Syrian people in their majority, regardless of their political positions re: the current government, have rejected calling for foreign intervention, such as occurred in Libya.
· Sanctions harm the people of Syria by causing food shortages, power outages, and blocking the distribution of goods.
· The U.S. is directly involved in arming and training a few selected Syrian militias favorable to the U.S., contributing to the escalation of violence, direct foreign military intervention, and total destabilization. The people who always suffer the most are the people not engaged in the armed struggle.
· We see the results of ‘humanitarian’ U.S. wars and occupations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya today, where the people, especially women and children, are worse off than before, with millions dead, injured, and/or displaced, an infrastructure and economy in shambles, and where there is no peace. A country that has a river of Iraqi, Afghan, and Libyan blood on its hands has no right to tell other countries what to do.
· The U.S. government’s goals in Syria are to gain dominance in a part of the world that holds the vast majority of the known oil reserves and to gain strategic advantage as it seeks to isolate and contain competitors like Russia and China. The U.S. has no interest in democracy or the humanitarian well-being of a country’s peoples anywhere in the world, especially in areas where the U.S. has economic or strategic interests.
· The U.S. has a long history of thwarting the emerging economies and progressive initiatives of the third world while supporting repressive regimes.
While activists may hold different views of Syria’s internal political system, we must all agree that the U.S. government has no right to impose its will on other countries, especially those formerly colonized and exploited by the West. In all cases, we must support the right of nations to self-determination – that is to be able to decide on and resolve internal conflicts free from any foreign intervention.
The United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) demands:
No U.S. or NATO intervention in the internal affairs of Syria!
No War! No Sanctions! No Intervention!
Self-determination for the Syrian people!
Please make an end of the year donation to UNAC to help our work continue during 2013. Please send a check made out to UNAC to UNAC, PO Box 123, Delmar, NY 12054 or click the link below to donate online.

To add yourself to the UNAC listserv, please send an email to:

(please forward widely)
The second national UNAC conference in March, attended by close to 600 activists, set the agenda for our work for this election year. Our primary objective was to keep the antiwar movement visible and in the streets in a time of never-ending and expanding wars, austerity, and repression. Our program for action emphasized the connection between the racist, imperialist wars abroad and the assault on working people, especially people of color, at home, while building coalitions founded on the principle that an injury to one is an injury to all.
These are the highlights of our successful efforts:
· We kicked off the organizing and helped build a People’s Summit and a mass demonstration of 15,000 people to protest NATO and the G-8 in Chicago in May.
· We rallied for peace at the Republican and Democratic Conventions and on the 11th anniversary of the Afghanistan invasion.
· Three of our Administrative Committee members traveled to Pakistan on the anti-drone tour organized by Code Pink and then reported about our experiences at forums around the country.
· We participated in the rally in New York against the NYPD’s racist Stop and Frisk policy and continued to support our Muslim brothers and sisters who are under attack.
· We joined the emergency actions in defense of Gaza under brutal attack by the U.S.-backed Israeli forces.
· We welcomed and participated in the Occupy movement that swept the country following the inspiration of the Arab Spring.
· We organized demonstrations to demand U.S. non-intervention in Iran, Libya, and Syria.
· We campaigned against the assault on our civil liberties, including indefinite detention, targeted assassinations, and the mass incarceration of Black and Latino youth.
There are dangerous times ahead. U.S. and NATO forces mass on the Turkish border; Iran continues to be a target of the U.S., NATO and Israel; the U.S. backs Israel’s continued land theft and brutality against the Palestinians; and the U.S. has its sights set on China and North Korea in the Pacific.
On the home front, unions are threatened, there are draconian cuts to the social safety net, Islamophobia is heightened, immigrants are detained and deported, and mass incarceration is used as a means of social control.
Drones are the new weapons of choice for war and domination and increasingly the foundation of the expanding surveillance state. Opposing drones will be a focus of our work in the coming year.
A strong and growing opposition to the criminal actions of the U.S. government is even more vital today. We urge you to support the antiwar movement and give an end-of-the-year gift to UNAC. Please contribute by hitting this button ( ) or going to the UNAC web site at and making a contribution.
We wish you all peaceful and restful holidays as we gear up to face the challenges of the new year.
Marilyn Levin and Joe Lombardo
UNAC Co-Coordinators.

To add yourself to the UNAC listserv, please send an email to:

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This year marks the 223rd anniversary of the beginning of the Great French Revolution with storming of the Bastille on July 14th 1789. An old Chinese Communist leader, the late Zhou Enlai, was once asked by a reporter to sum up the important lessons of the French Revolution. In reply he answered that it was too early to tell what those lessons might be. Whether that particular story is true or not it does contain one important truth. Militants today at the beginning of the 21st century can still profit from an understanding of the history of the French Revolution.

There are many books that outline the history of that revolution. I have reviewed some of them in this space. Probably the most succinct overview, although it was written over one half century ago, is Professor Georges Lefebvre’s study. For those who want a more up-to-date overview of the main events and political disputes reflecting the tremendous increase in scholarship on the subject the book under review has a lot to recommend it. The author, a professor at the University of Portsmouth, England, covers all the main points from the pre-revolutionary problems confronting France at the time including, its terrible debt problems caused in the main by its support of the American Revolution to the political, social and, yes, sexual inadequacies of Louis XVI. As has been noted by many commentators on revolution, including the author and myself, one of the prerequisites for revolution is that the old regime can no longer govern in the same way. The personage of Louis XVI seemingly fits that proposition to a tee.

Professor Andress goes on to highlight the key events. Obviously, and most visibly the storming of the Bastille that opened up the cracks in the old monarchial regime. He details the struggle to create a constitutional monarchy through the various legislative assemblies that sought to carry out the reforms necessary to bring France into the modern age short of declaring a republic. And also the attempts, including by Louis himself, by forces of the old regime to return the old monarchy or stop the revolution in its tracks. When those efforts failed and the revolution began in earnest the Professor Andress goes into great detail analyzing the internal struggle by the revolutionaries, most notably the great fight between the Girondins and Jacobins for power, and the formation of the republic. After the defeat of the Girondins this led to the further fights to ‘purify’ the revolution among the Jacobin forces and the reign of the Robespierre-led Committee of Public Safety that consolidated the gains of the revolution through the ‘Reign of Terror’. Finally, the professor highlights the downfall and execution of Robespierre in 1794 represented the reaction that most revolutions exhibit when the political possibilities for further revolutionary moves is no longer tenable.

The author has done more than that though for those who are trying to understand the sometimes confusing political alignments in Paris and in the country. He discusses the voting patterns of the those in the various legislative assemblies; the role of the sans-culottes in pushing the revolution left; the falling out among the Jacobins; the international situation (meaning the immediate European one); and, most importantly, the reaction in non-Paris, the countryside that rebelled for various reasons against the central authority in the capital. Other subjects include the murder of Marat by Corday that set the revolution bloodily leftward, the Festival of the Supreme Being as an attempt to finally destroy the power of the Catholic Church and other reforms by the left-Jacobins to consolidate the revolution. The major negative of this work is political. As almost always in any discussion of the first five years of the French Revolution there is an almost fatalistic portrait of the emergence of Robespierre intertwined throughout all of the earlier events giving the impression that he was inevitably bound to take power. And, also inevitably, due to the excesses of the ‘Reign of Terror’ to lose it. This may be a good way to save one’s political soul but it is bad history. Revolutions, particularly great revolutions, are few and far between. They are messy affairs at the time and as seen through the historical lens. Nevertheless if the social tensions in society could always, or should always, be resolved in a nice non- violent parliamentary way there would be no revolutions. Damn, where would that leave us as the inheritors of the sans-culottes tradition?

From The Pen Of Joshua Lawrence Breslin- When Girls Doo-Wopped In The Be-Bop 1960s Night, Take Two

I have, of late, been running back over some rock material that formed my coming of age listening music (on that ubiquitous, and very personal, iPod, oops, battery-driven transistor radio that kept those snooping parents out in the dark, clueless, and just fine, agreed), and that of my generation, the generation of ’68. Naturally one had to pay homage to the blues influences from the likes of Muddy Waters, Big Mama Thornton, and Big Joe Turner. And, of course, the rockabilly influences from Elvis, Carl Perkins, Wanda Jackson, and Jerry Lee Lewis on. Additionally, I have spent some time on the male side of the doo wop be-bop Saturday night led by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers on Why Do Fools Fall In Love? (good question, right). I note that I have not done much with the female side of the doo wop night, the great ‘girl groups’ that had their heyday in the late 1950s and early 1960s before the British invasion, among other things, changed our tastes in popular music. I make some amends for that omission here.

One problem with the girl groups for a guy, me, a serious rock guy, me, is that the lyrics for many of the girl group songs, frankly, did not “speak to me.” After all how much empathy could a young ragamuffin of boy brought up on the wrong side of the tracks like this writer have for a girl who breaks a guy's heart after leading him on, yes, leading him on, just because her big bruiser of a boyfriend is coming back and she needs some excuse to brush the heartbroken lad off in the Angels' My Boyfriend’s Back. Or some lucky guy, some lucky Sunday guy, who breathlessly catches the eye of the singer in the Shirelles' Met Him On Sunday from a guy who, dateless Saturday night, was hunched over some misbegotten book, some study book, on Sunday feeling all dejected. And how about this, some two, or maybe, three-timing gal who berated her ever-loving boyfriend because she needs a good talking to, or worst, a politically incorrect "beating" in Joanie Sommers’ Johnny Get Angry.

So you get the idea, this stuff could not “speak to me.” Now you understand, right? Except, surprise, surprise foolish, behind the eight- ball, know-nothing youthful guy had it all wrong and should have been listening, and listening like crazy, to these lyrics because, brothers and sisters, they held the key to what was what about what was on girls’ minds back in the day, and maybe now a little too, and if I could have decoded this I would have had, well, the beginning of knowledge, girl knowledge. Damn. But that is one of the virtues, and maybe the only virtue of age. Yah, and also get this- you had better get your do-lang, do-lang, your shoop, shoop, and your best be-bop, be-bop into that good night voice out and sing along to the lyrics here. This, fellow baby-boomers, was our teen angst, teen alienation, teen love youth and now this stuff sounds great.

From The Pen Of Joshua Lawrence Breslin-Those Old John Garfield Blues- “Force Of Evil”- A Film Review

Click on the headline to link to a Wikipedia entry for John Garfield's Force Of Evil.

DVD Review

Force Of Evil, starring John Garfield, Thomas Gomez, Marie Windsor, MGM, 1948

… and they went east of Eden. Yah, the fall was tough, tough all the way around, no question. Especially for Cain and Abel who duked it out, no holds barred, for bragging rights about who was who in the new world order. That premise is the mist of time myth behind the film under review John Garfield’s classic film noir Force Of Evil. Here’s the skinny on this version of that old-time story and you can figure out who did right, who tried to do right ,and who got it completely wrong in this wicked old world.

Like I said things since the fall have been kind of tough, tough for most people, most people including a guy named Joe (played by Mister Garfield). Joe, like a fair number of guys was from hunger, 1930s Great Depression hunger, 1930s New York City hunger which might have been the worst kind, especially with the parents gone and an older brother taking care of you. A good, or trying to be good, older brother, Leo (played by Thomas Gomez), who denied his own worth and put Joe through law school which resulted in a big time job with a cushy law office on Wall Street for his wise guy younger brother . But see guys from hunger, unlike the Mayfair swells with the silver spoons who only scratch a little , are always scratching like crazy to get a little more ahead of that next guy. So Joe took the fall, took the fall as the legal eagle front guy for a New York City numbers crime syndicate. And as with all such syndicates economy of scale is important (in short, all the dough from their patch of earth in one pot, theirs) so Joe and his Mister work out a scheme to corner the then fairly democratic, if illegal, small time numbers market.

The problem is that old Leo is knee deep in the small time numbers racket and if he doesn’t play ball he will take a fall as the organization flexes it muscle, a fatal fall maybe. Joe tries to reason Leo to become an organization man, and he finally succumbs. Unfortunately, although there is a tendency for all capitalist enterprises to become monopolies, there is still competition out there from another syndicate who wants in on the lucrative numbers dream hit the big one market. And Leo is, in the end, the pigeon, the fall guy of fall guys. He wind up dead, very dead, under a bridge (come on you know what bridge) in the East River. That sparks a revival or moral courage in Joe who realizes that he, one way or the other, is responsible for Leo’s death. Of course a dame, a from hunger dame, Doris (played by Beatrice Pearson), a dame who he had big eyes for, who knows, knows almost Catholic good girl institutively that you can’t succumb to evil without becoming evil helps him along in his moral recovery. Still it was close thing, and a handy revolver and some cute tricks helped out. Like I say working your life out here east of Eden is a tough dollar, a tough dollar indeed.

Pardon Bradley Manning

Friday, December 28, 2012

Año First Night Boston Copley Square-Nuevo Manning Eva Perdón privado stand-out

Año First Night Boston Copley Square-Nuevo Manning Eva Perdón privado stand-out

En solidaridad con Manning privada Copley Square Al celebrar el Año Nuevo, el Año de la Libertad de Bradley. (Este lugar es ahora el lugar tradicional First Night para todos aquellos que quieren estar en contra de las guerras, las guerras actuales que impiden, por la liberación nacional y las luchas por lo que será uno de almas gemelas como las personas se reúnen para ver el desfile primera noche que comienza en la zona tarde en la noche.)

Vamos a redoblar nuestros esfuerzos para liberar privado Bradley Manning-Presidente Perdón Obama Bradley Manning-Hacer todo Plaza de la Ciudad en América (y el mundo) A Bradley Manning Square De Copley de Boston Square a Berkeley para nosotros Berlin-Join In Copley Square (en la Biblioteca Pública de Boston Biblioteca, esquina de las calles Boylston y Dartmouth), Boston, MA. Para un stand-out Por Bradley-First Night, lunes 31 de diciembre de 3:00-5:00 pm
The Private Bradley Manning caso se dirige hacia una tarde - juicio programado para el invierno ahora marzo de 2013. Las recientes noticias sobre su caso se ha centrado en los muchos (desde el pasado mes de abril) mociones previas al juicio audiencias, incluyendo peticiones de la defensa para desestimar por falta de juicio rápido (Private Manning prisión preventiva está ahora a 900 más días), el despido como una cuestión de la libertad de expresión y un efecto mínimo sobre presuntos problemas de seguridad nacionales (cuestiones para nosotros saber qué demonios está haciendo el gobierno, ya sea en frente de nosotros, o detrás de la espalda) y el despido basado en las graves denuncias de comportamiento tortuoso por las autoridades militares se extienden lejos de la cadena de mando mientras soldado Manning fue detenido en Kuwait y en el bergantín Quantico Marine alrededor de un año que terminó en abril de 2011. En diciembre del mismo Manning privado, así como de otras personas, incluyendo altos militares de los trabajadores de salud mental, subió al estrado al detalle esos abusos.

Algunas noticias recientes más importantes de los 11 2012 preventiva de sesiones es el ofrecimiento de la defensa de declararse culpable de cargos menores (uso indebido, no autorizado de Internet, etc) con el fin de limpiar la cubierta y tiene la mayor (con un posibilidad de una sentencia de cadena perpetua) espionaje / ayudar al enemigo cuestión únicamente ante el juez de la corte marcial (un solo juez militar, el que ha estado escuchando las mociones previas al juicio, no un grupo condenado a cadena perpetua en fichas). Otras noticias incluye la mayor atención de los medios por los medios de la corriente principal en torno al caso, así como una declaración importante por tres Premios Nobel de la Paz (incluido el obispo Tutu de Sudáfrica) pidiendo a su laureado compañero, el presidente estadounidense Barack Obama, al soldado Manning libre de sus cárceles.

Desde septiembre de 2011, a fin de dar a conocer el caso Manning privada ', ha habido semanal stand-outs (así como otro anuncio más hoc y eventos esporádicos) en varios lugares en el área metropolitana de Boston a partir de Somerville al otro lado de la Davis Square Redline MBTA detener (rebautizada Perdón Bradley Manning Square durante la duración del stand-out 's) en Somerville viernes por la tarde y más tarde de los miércoles. Últimamente esta posición de salida ha tenido lugar en cada semana los miércoles 5:00-18:00 con el fin de seguir ampliando nuestro alcance en Central Square, Cambridge, MA. (Pequeño parque en la esquina de Massachusetts Avenue y Prospect Street justo fuera de la parada de Redline MBTA, también cambia el nombre de Plaza de Manning para el resto.) Únase a nosotros. Presidente Obama Manning Perdón PRIVADAS ahora mismo!


Boston First Night- Copley Square New Year’s Eve Pardon Private Manning Stand-Out

Stand In Solidarity With Private Manning In Copley Square As We Celebrate The New Year, The Year Of Bradley’s Freedom. (This spot is now the traditional First Night spot for all those who want to stand against current wars, impeding wars, and for national liberation struggles so we will be among kindred spirits as people gather to watch the First Night parade that starts in the area later in the evening.)

Let’s Redouble Our Efforts To Free Private Bradley Manning-President Obama Pardon Bradley Manning -Make Every Town Square In America (And The World) A Bradley Manning Square From Boston’s Copley Square To Berkeley to Berlin-Join Us In Copley Square (at the Boston Public Library, corner of Dartmouth and Boylston Streets ), Boston , Ma. For A Stand-Out For Bradley- First Night, Monday December 31st From 3:00-5:00 PM


The Private Bradley Manning case is headed toward a late - winter trial now scheduled for March 2013. The recent news on his case has centered on the many (since last April) pre-trial motions hearings including defense motions to dismiss for lack of speedy trial (Private Manning’s pre-trial confinement is now at 900 plus days), dismissal as a matter of freedom of speech and minimal effect on alleged national security issues (issues for us to know what the hell the government is doing either in front of us, or behind our backs) and dismissal based on serious allegations of torturous behavior by the military authorities extending far up the chain of command while Private Manning was detained in Kuwait and at the Quantico Marine brig for about a year ending in April 2011. In December Private Manning himself, as well as others including senior military mental health workers, took the stand to detail those abuses.

Some more important recent news from the November 2012 pre-trail sessions is the offer by the defense to plead guilty to lesser charges (wrongful, unauthorized use of the Internet, etc.) in order to clear the deck and have the major (with a possibility of a life sentence) espionage /aiding the enemy issue solely before the court-martial judge (a single military judge, the one who has been hearing the pre-trial motions, not a lifer-stacked panel). Other news includes the increased media attention by mainstream outlets around the case, as well as an important statement by three Nobel Peace Laureates (including Bishop Tutu from South Africa) calling on their fellow laureate, United States President Barack Obama, to free Private Manning from his jails.

Since September 2011, in order to publicize Private Manning’ case, there have been weekly stand-outs (as well as other more ad hoc and sporadic events) in various locations in the Greater Boston area starting in Somerville across from the Davis Square Redline MBTA stop (renamed Pardon Bradley Manning Square for the stand-out’s duration) in Somerville on Friday afternoons and later on Wednesdays. Lately this stand-out has been held on each week on Wednesdays from 5:00 to 6:00 PM in order to continue to broaden our outreach at Central Square, Cambridge, Ma. (Small Park at the corner of Massachusetts Avenue and Prospect Street just outside the Redline MBTA stop, also rename Manning Square for the duration.) Join us. President Obama Pardon Private Manning Now!

From The Pen Of Joshua Lawrence Breslin-When Girls Doo-Wopped In The Be-Bop 1960s Night

Jess Barker, Jess Barker, Junior to separate out the generations correctly, very correctly when talking about musical tastes, a subject over which more wars that international ones have been fought, mostly bloodless, but sometimes a close thing, mainly around that classic battle between sober, sane, and profound parent music and wild, pagan, decadent children music, name the generational conflict, but the present one is centered on the staid 1950s Perry Como, Patti Page, Frank Sinatra, and their gang versus sexy, silky, make the women wet Elvis, riffing Chuck Berry, manic Jerry Lee Lewis, and their progeny, specifically those doo wop singers who filled the gap after Elvis died (or might as well have fleeing in the night to the U.S. Army), Chuck got caught with one of Mister’s woman, also in the night, and Jerry Lee got caught playing kissing cousin games, maybe day and night. Jess had of late, after dusting off some attic boxes filled with 45 RPM records and LPs and his old teenage days record player in preparation for readying his father’s house, his late father’s house, for sale, been running back over some material that formed his coming of age listening music (on that ubiquitous, and very personal battery-driven transistor radio that kept those snooping parents out in the dark, clueless, and just fine, all agreed), and that of his generation, the generation of ’68.

Naturally back in those days, especially on the days, nights, late Sunday nights really, when he was able through some inexplicable airwave magic to receive Mr. Lee’s Midnight Blues Show from the wilds of Chicago, one had to pay homage to the blues influences on rock and roll from the likes of Muddy Waters (think Mannish Child), Big Mama Thornton(think the original fired-up Hound Dog not Elvis’ misspent version), and Big Joe Turner (think, accept no imitation, Shake, Rattle and Roll) And, of course, also the rockabilly influences on rock from Elvis (think Good Rock’ Tonight), Carl Perkins (think Blue Suede Shoes), Wanda Jackson (think Let’s Have A Party), Jerry Lee Lewis (think Breathless along with about twelve other classics of the genre), and perhaps the most influential of all, of Warren Smith’s Rock and Roll Ruby.

He had as well spent some time on the male side of the doo wop be-bop Saturday night led by Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers on Why Do Fools Fall In Love? (a good question, he chuckled to himself as he fell into memory working through the lyrics of that one) backed up by The Falcons’ You’re So Fine. After taking stock of his old time tastes he noted that he had not done much with the female side of the doo wop night, the great girl doo wop groups that had their heyday in the late 1950s and early 1960s before the British invasion, among other things, changed his generation’s tastes in popular music. He had meant to make some amends for that omission but found a certain stumbling block in the way, the “speak to” issue, then and now.

One problem with the doo wop girl groups for a guy, as Jess thought to himself on that question, a serious rock guy was that the lyrics for many of the girl group songs, frankly, did not “speak” to him. After all how much empathy could a young ragamuffin of a boy brought up on the wrong side of the tracks (in the very small too cramped for five people faded house that held that treasure trove of memories) like Jess for a girl who broke up with her boyfriend, a motorcycle guy, a sensitive motorcycle guy, on her parents’ demand because of his lower class upbringing as the lyrics in the Shangri-Las’ Leader of the Pack attest to. He remembered that he blushed every time it was played on the jukebox over at Doc’s Drugstore, the local hang-out for after school be-boppers, or those like him who wanted to be-bop. Except, see, she should have stuck with her guy through thick and thin, and maybe, just maybe, he would not have skidded off that rainy road and gone to Harley heaven so young. And, maybe, just maybe, they could be in that little white house with the picket fence, Harley out in the garage needing little work, a little washing too, hosting angelic grandkids today.

Try this one, as added ammunition for Jess’s plea, the lyrics about some guy, some sensitive, shy, good-looking guy, a guy with wavy hair who all the girls were going crazy over but who the singer was going make her very own in the boy and girl love battle in the Cliffons’ He’s So Fine when Jess was nothing but a girl reject, mainly. He blushed again as he remembered back to the time when he asked Laura, school fox Laura, out on a date based on some common discussion of the lyrics at Doc’s and in a moment of bravado blurted out his request. She just smirked, and said her boyfriend, her football- playing boyfriend, would frown on that request. He immediately backed off and returned to his wanna-be be-bop shell once he heard that bad news.

Or how about this one, the one where the love bugs were going to be married and really get that white house picket fence thing in the Dixie Cups’ Chapel Of Love for a guy who, more often than not, didn’t even have steady girlfriend. Jess, a kiss-less youth, would never even get into, would not even make the cut, on the part of the anatomy that Betty Everett harped on in Its In His Kiss. Or, finally, how could Jess possibly relate to the teen girl angst problem, the very real “what if I get pregnant if I do it” in the barely “the pill” knowledge night posed in the Shirelles’ Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? Yah, how would Jess know if it was the real thing, or just a moment’s pleasure, and what that dreaded tomorrow they sing about would bring.

So you get the idea of Jess’ problem, this stuff, this girl chatter in the Monday morning before school girls’ “lav” what did, and did not happen on Friday and Saturday with Jimmy down at the seashore, over at the back seat drive-in theater, or the payback after a big splurge at Mel’s Drive-In restaurant could not “speak” to him. Now you understand, right? Yah, but also get, and get this is straight, straight from Jess Barker, Junior, you had better get your do-lang, do-lang, your shoop, shoop, shoop and your best be-bop bopped into that good night voice out and listen to, and sing along with, the lyrics to those great girl doo wop girl groups. This, fellow baby-boomers, was about our teen angst, our teen alienation, our teen love youth traumas and now, a distant now, this stuff sounds great.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

From The Partisan Defense Committee

Workers Vanguard No. 1012
9 November 2012

Free the Class-War Prisoners!

27th Annual PDC Holiday Appeal

(Class-Struggle Defense Notes)

This year marks the 27th Holiday Appeal for class-war prisoners, those thrown behind bars for their opposition to racist capitalist oppression. The Partisan Defense Committee provides monthly stipends to 16 of these prisoners as well as holiday gifts for them and their families. This is a revival of the tradition of the early International Labor Defense (ILD) under its secretary and founder James P. Cannon. The stipends are a necessary expression of solidarity with the prisoners—a message that they are not forgotten.

Launching the ILD’s appeal for the prisoners, Cannon wrote, “The men in prison are still part of the living class movement” (“A Christmas Fund of our Own,” Daily Worker, 17 October 1927). Cannon noted that the stipends program “is a means of informing them that the workers of America have not forgotten their duty toward the men to whom we are all linked by bonds of solidarity.” This motivation inspires our program today. The PDC also continues to publicize the causes of the prisoners in the pages of Workers Vanguard, the PDC newsletter, Class-Struggle Defense Notes, and our Web site We provide subscriptions to WV and accompany the stipends with reports on the PDC’s work. In a recent letter, MOVE prisoner Eddie Africa wrote, “I received the letters and the money, thank you for both, it’s a good feeling to have friends remembering you with affection!”

The Holiday Appeal raises the funds for this vital program. The PDC provides $25 per month to the prisoners, and extra for their birthdays and during the holiday season. We would like to provide more. The prisoners generally use the funds for basic necessities: supplementing the inadequate prison diet, purchasing stamps and writing materials needed to maintain contact with family and comrades, and pursuing literary, artistic, musical and other pursuits to mollify a bit the living hell of prison. The costs of these have obviously grown, including the exponential growth in prison phone charges.

The capitalist rulers have made clear their continuing determination to slam the prison doors on those who stand in the way of brutal exploitation, imperialist depredations and racist oppression. We encourage WV readers, trade-union activists and fighters against racist oppression to dig deep for the class-war prisoners. The 16 class-war prisoners receiving stipends from the PDC are listed below:

*   *   *

Mumia Abu-Jamal is a former Black Panther Party spokesman, a well-known supporter of the MOVE organization and an award-winning journalist known as “the voice of the voiceless.” Last December the Philadelphia district attorney’s office announced it was dropping its longstanding efforts to execute America’s foremost class-war prisoner. While this brings to an end the legal lynching campaign, Mumia remains condemned to spend the rest of his life in prison with no chance of parole, despite overwhelming evidence of his innocence.

Mumia was framed up for the 1981 killing of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner and was initially sentenced to death explicitly for his political views. Mountains of documentation proving his innocence, including the sworn confession of Arnold Beverly that he, not Mumia, shot and killed Faulkner, have been submitted to the courts. But from top to bottom, the courts have repeatedly refused to hear the exculpatory evidence.

The state authorities hope that with the transfer of Mumia from death row his cause will be forgotten and that he will rot in prison until he dies. This must not be Mumia’s fate. Fighters for Mumia’s freedom must link his cause to the class struggles of the multiracial proletariat. Trade unionists, opponents of the racist death penalty and fighters for black rights must continue the fight to free Mumia from “slow death” row in the racist dungeons of Pennsylvania.

Leonard Peltier is an internationally renowned class-war prisoner. Peltier’s incarceration for his activism in the American Indian Movement has come to symbolize this country’s racist repression of its native peoples, the survivors of centuries of genocidal oppression. Peltier’s frame-up for the 1975 deaths of two marauding FBI agents in what had become a war zone on the South Dakota Pine Ridge Reservation, shows what capitalist “justice” is all about. Although the lead government attorney has admitted, “We can’t prove who shot those agents,” and the courts have acknowledged blatant prosecutorial misconduct, the 68-year-old Peltier is still locked away. Peltier suffers from multiple serious medical conditions and is incarcerated far from his people and family. He is not scheduled to be reconsidered for parole for another 12 years!

Eight MOVE members—Chuck Africa, Michael Africa, Debbie Africa, Janet Africa, Janine Africa, Delbert Africa, Eddie Africa and Phil Africa—are in their 35th year of prison. They were sentenced to 30-100 years after the 8 August 1978 siege of their Philadelphia home by over 600 heavily armed cops, having been falsely convicted of killing a police officer who died in the cops’ own cross fire. In 1985, eleven of their MOVE family members, including five children, were massacred by Philly cops when a bomb was dropped on their living quarters. After more than three decades of unjust incarceration, these innocent prisoners are routinely turned down at parole hearings. None have been released.

Lynne Stewart is a radical lawyer sentenced to ten years for defending her client, a blind Egyptian cleric imprisoned for an alleged plot to blow up New York City landmarks in the early 1990s. For this advocate known for defense of Black Panthers, radical leftists and others reviled by the capitalist state, her sentence may well amount to a death sentence as she is 73 years old and suffers from breast cancer. Originally sentenced to 28 months, her resentencing more than quadrupled her prison time in a loud affirmation by the Obama administration that there will be no letup in the massive attack on democratic rights under the “war on terror.” This year her appeal of the onerous sentence was turned down.

Jaan Laaman and Thomas Manning are the two remaining anti-imperialist activists known as the Ohio 7 still in prison, convicted for their roles in a radical group that took credit for bank “expropriations” and bombings of symbols of U.S. imperialism, such as military and corporate offices, in the late 1970s and ’80s. Before their arrests in 1984 and 1985, the Ohio 7 were targets of massive manhunts. Their children were kidnapped at gunpoint by the Feds.

The Ohio 7’s politics were once shared by thousands of radicals during the Vietnam antiwar movement and by New Leftists who wrote off the possibility of winning the working class to a revolutionary program and saw themselves as an auxiliary of Third World liberation movements. But, like the Weathermen before them, the Ohio 7 were spurned by the “respectable” left. From a proletarian standpoint, the actions of these leftist activists against imperialism and racist injustice are not a crime. They should not have served a day in prison.

Ed Poindexter and Wopashitwe Mondo Eyen we Langa are former Black Panther supporters and leaders of the Omaha, Nebraska, National Committee to Combat Fascism. They were victims of the FBI’s deadly COINTELPRO operation under which 38 Black Panther Party members were killed and hundreds more imprisoned on frame-up charges. Poindexter and Mondo were railroaded to prison and sentenced to life for a 1970 explosion that killed a cop, and they have now spent more than 40 years behind bars. Nebraska courts have repeatedly denied Poindexter and Mondo new trials despite the fact that a crucial piece of evidence excluded from the original trial, a 911 audio tape long-suppressed by the FBI, proved that testimony of the state’s key witness was perjured.

Hugo Pinell, the last of the San Quentin 6 still in prison, has been in solitary isolation for more than four decades. He was a militant anti-racist leader of prison rights organizing along with George Jackson, his comrade and mentor, who was gunned down by prison guards in 1971. Despite numerous letters of support and no disciplinary write-ups for over 28 years, Pinell was again denied parole in 2009. Now in his 60s, Pinell continues to serve a life sentence at the notorious torture chamber, Pelican Bay Security Housing Unit in California, a focal point for hunger strikes against grotesquely inhuman conditions.

Send your contributions to: PDC, P.O. Box 99, Canal Street Station, New York, NY 10013; (212) 406-4252.

Monday, December 24, 2012

The World Can't Wait
Stop the Crimes of Your Government
Donate | Local Chapters | Store | Previous Newsletters

Friday Jan. 11

PROTEST 12 noon at US Supreme Court
Washington DC

Guantanamo Protest
Photo from Jan. 11, 2011 by Andy Worthington

Monday Jan. 21

Inauguration Day. World Can't Wait is helping to plan a day of dramatic protest against U.S. drone war and indefinite detention on the day Obama is inaugurated. Plan on being in DC 10-4 near the White House, details to come.
Drone protest

We are hearing good things from many of you as you contribute to the year-end goal of $27,000 to fund the World Can't Wait national office, 4 websites, phones, mailings, and stipend for our director. We're at 30% of our goal, with 3+ weeks to go. Please be a part of this collective conscience in action!


Tuesday, we gave you a sense of how much World Can't Wait is appreciated for our role in sticking to principle, and supporting others who do. Today, I want to shout-out to some of the many who show courage and fortitude in the effort to show the rest of the world that there are people living in this country who don't go along with the program of war and repression. I'm concentrating today on people who expose and resist U.S. wars, drone strikes, and indefinite detention.

Bradley ManningFirst, and in a class by himself, is Bradley Manning:

Brad Manning finally got to speak publicly last week in military court, which significantly enhanced our knowledge of the motivation for leaking information to the public on U.S. wars, torture, and bullying of other nations. Now that he is claiming responsibility, we can say, with no restraint, that Bradley is a hero, and should be freed and given a medal for his courageous whistle blowing. I urge you to watch and read the following:

Video from supporters on

C-Span Video: Presentation by Bradley’s attorney David Coombs

Bradley Manning: a Tale of Liberty Lost in America

Glenn Greenwald writes: “...Whatever one thinks of Manning's alleged acts, he appears the classic whistleblower. This information could have been sold for substantial sums to a foreign government or a terror group. Instead he apparently knowingly risked his liberty to show them to the world because – he said when he believed he was speaking in private – he wanted to trigger "worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms".

Compare this aggressive prosecution of Manning to the Obama administration's vigorous efforts to shield Bush-era war crimes and massive Wall Street fraud from all forms of legal accountability. Not a single perpetrator of those genuine crimes has faced court under Obama, a comparison that reflects the priorities and values of US justice.”

Bradley Manning Testifies on His Torture and Abuse by U.S. Military

From Revolution newspaper:
“Julian Assange, the founder of Wiki-Leaks, told Democracy Now! (November 29), “What is happening this week is not the trial of Bradley Manning. What is happening this week is the trial of the U.S. military. This is Bradley Manning’s abuse case . . . [he’s been] subject to conditions that the U.N. special rapporteur, Juan Méndez, special rapporteur for torture, formally found amounted to torture.

“Why was that treatment placed on him for so long, when so many people—independent psychiatrists, military psychiatrists—complained about what was going on in extremely strong terms? His lawyer and support team say that he was being treated in that manner, in part, in order to coerce some kind of statement or false confession from him that would implicate WikiLeaks as an organization and me personally . . . this young man’s treatment . . . is directly as a result of an attempt to attack this organization by the United States military, to coerce this young man into providing evidence that could be used to more effectively attack us, and also serve as some kind of terrible disincentive for other potential whistleblowers from stepping forward.””
Shaker Aamer
Shaker Aamer is the last British subject held at Guantanamo. He was singled out for the most brutal treatment because he has continually spoken up for the prisoners. He was set to be released many years ago, having been held now for almost 11 years with no evidence that he did anything to warrant imprisonment. Reports from recent years have made us very concerned for his life, especially after "suicides" of other prisoners. We are very glad to see this recent photo, and urge you to sign the petition to get him out NOW.

Andy Worthington has spent many years now documenting U.S. abuse of prisoners at Guantanamo, even as the Obama administration moved "forward" past its promise to close Guantanamo. His work is unique and invaluable. We hope we can get him to the U.S. again next month for the 11th anniversary of Guantanamo. See
The Long Pursuit of Accountability for the Bush Administration’s Torture Program.

Nancy Talanian created the Bill of Rights Defense Committee after the NancyBush regime went crazy with the USA PATRIOT Act. She went on to form the No Guantanamos Project, bringing the challenge directly to U.S. communities to take released prisoners from the prison, if they could not be released to their home countries. Without her weekly newsletter, (
subscribe here) I would not have known that Ryan Townsend, a student at USC, thinks Congress must close Guantanamo.
Protesting drones
Upstate NY Coalition to Ground the Drones. These friends live in upstate New York, folks! Where, even with climate change, it snows a lot. Still, they protest at the gate of Hancock Air Force Base with astounding regularity and commitment. This kind of action should spread to every base and every university where the U.S. Defense Department is handing out billions for drone research and development.

Brian Terrell of
Voices for Creative Non-Violence is in prison for six months, the maximum sentence for trespassing on a US base near Kansas City for protesting U.S. drone wars last spring. View his story. His colleague Kathy Kelly travels constantly to the sites of U.S. occupations, identifying with the victims and bringing their stories to us. Read her message from Gaza in We Want It to Stop.
Kathy Kelly
Photo by Voices for Creative Non-Violence
Brian Terrell
Bill Maher??? Sometimes people you don't agree with on much, say things that are strikingly prescient and true. See for yourself:
“We can now visit death upon our enemies without having to show up in person, look them in the eye and have an actual fight. It just feels wrong -- like breaking up with a girl via text message. If you're going to vanquish your enemy, shouldn't you have to confront them? How does a warrior willing to die for his cause in the Takhar Province fight a guy operating a joystick in Tallahassee?...We utilize the best means at our disposal to go into foreign lands and blow up the people we consider the bad guys even if that means collateral damage in the form of civilian casualties. When someone does that exact same thing to us, don’t we call it "terrorism"?”

Send me your nominations. Anytime people do and say things that are right on the mission of stopping the crimes of our government, please share.
Debra Sweet, Director, The World Can't Wait
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