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Iraq war veterans speak out “Refuse to fight Wall Street’s wars!”

Sun, 08/14/2011 - 5:00pm

Sun. Aug. 14, 5pm
2969 Mission St. btwn 25th and 26th Sts.
near 24th St. BART, #14, 49 MUNI

Forum: Iraq war veterans speak out
“Refuse to fight Wall Street’s wars!”
March Forward! members speak in San Francisco

Iraq war veterans turned anti-war organizers will speak in San Francisco about their experiences in Washington’s wars, how it transformed them into anti-war activists, and how they are building a GI resistance movement within the U.S. military today.

The event is organized by March Forward!, an organization of veterans and active-duty troops opposed to the wars (click here to learn more about March Forward!), and will come on the heels of a major speak-out at Army base Fort Lewis, where they have been organizing among active-duty soldiers.

Afghan vet says 30 U.S. deaths in Afghanistan an "atrocity,' calls for end to war‏

Afghan vet says 30 U.S. deaths in Afghanistan an "atrocity,' calls for end to war‏

Sunday, August 7, 2011
Contact: Rick Reyes cell: 213-359-8631 twitter:@rick_reyes

Loss of life in Afghanistan an 'atrocity,' U.S. should end
operations now, says Marine veteran who chairs
California Democratic Party veterans caucus

LOS ANGELES, Ca. – Thirty U.S. American troops reported killed Saturday in an Afghanistan helicopter crash emphasizes the need for the U.S. to end operations sooner rather than later in that theatre of war, according to a Iraq/Afghanistan U.S. Marine veteran, who now is chair of the Veterans Caucus of the California Democratic Party.

New agencies reported and government officials confirmed Saturday that as many as 30 Americans – including at least 22 Navy SEALs – were confirmed dead in the crash of a troop-carrying Chinook helicopter, caused by enemy fire. It is the deadliest day for U.S. troops in Afghanistan since it began in 2001.

"These men and women have real families and friends who will never see them again. This is part of a continuing tragedy playing out in Afghanistan," said Rick Reyes, who did tours in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

Wellstone Progressives Monthly Meeting

Thu, 06/23/2011 - 7:00pm

Wellstone Progressive Democrats of Sacramento
Monthly Meeting

Thursday, June 23 · 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Colonial Heights library
4799 Stockton Blvd
Sacramento, CA (MAP)

This month, courtesy of Glenda Wertenberger we have a special guest Speaker Carolyn Fink from the Soldier's Project! (

The Soldiers Project was established to provide free psychological services to military personnel who have served during the conflicts in Iraq or Afghanistan and their loved ones. They also educate the community regarding the psychological effects of war. Carolyn Fink is one ...of the dedicated psychologists who donates her time to this worthy cause.

Agenda for Thursday June 23rd, 2011:

Welcome - Introductions

Special Presentation by Carolyn Fink - Soldier's Project
Introduction by Glenda Wertenberger

Citizens United Resolution - Chris Niehaus

Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op Resolution - Maggie Coulter

Discuss next officer nomination / election cycle

Wellstone Camping Retreat info update

The Covert Origins of the Af-Pak War

Keep this in mind the next time they say they need hundreds of billions of more dollars for the wars with no end

Guest Post: The Covert Origins of the Af-Pak War - The Road to World War III

Submitted by David DeGraw

This report is an excerpt from David DeGraw’s new book, “The Road Through 2012: Revolution or World War III.” It is a continuation from the previous section, “Inside the Global Banking Intelligence Complex, BCCI Operations.” This is the fourth installment to a new series. To be notified via email of new postings from this series, subscribe here.

The Covert Origins of the Af-Pak War - The Road to World War III

Now that we have an understanding of how the Global Banking Intelligence Complex ran operations through BCCI, let’s look at how some of BCCI’s key players kept operating after the bank was finally shut down. As discussed in the last chapter, during the 1980s and early ’90s, the CIA worked in partnership with BCCI in what was, at the time, the agency’s largest covert operation ever, pumping an estimated $10 billion into funding the Afghan Mujahideen. Through this operation, Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda network was formed. Bin Laden had accounts in BCCI and ran CIA/BCCI-funded camps.

In “ Modern Jihad:Tracing the Dollars Behind the Terror Networks,” investigative reporter Loretta Napoleoni described the origins of the al Qaeda network:

“[During the Afghan-Soviet war,] potential Arab warriors traveled to Pakistan where they resided in guesthouses. These hostels did not keep any records and not a single organization listed the names of the fighters, where they had gone to fight and if they had been injured or killed. The lack of vital information caused distress among relatives. At that time bin Laden was in charge of several guesthouses and was embarrassed by the hundreds of calls requesting information. Hence, he decided to keep track of whoever stayed at the hostels and that record came to be known as the Record of al-Qaeda. This is how al-Qaeda, which means the base or the scroll, was born.”

Sign reflects only a fraction of wars' cost

Sign reflects only a fraction of wars' cost

For eight years, Lorraine Krofchok has posted the number of soldiers killed in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In that time, three passers-by have erased the numbers. "Erasing the numbers doesn't mean it didn't happen," she says.

Nearly every day I walk my dog, Toby, past a neighbor's whiteboard sign.

Sometimes I stare at it and sometimes I'm repulsed by it.

The board changes every week, but for now it reads: War Dead:
Afghanistan 1248
Iraq 4417

Science Friday: The Cost of War - Traumatic Brain Injury

There's a video I wanted to include at the top of this post, but the screengrab they use is pretty shocking of one of the soldiers, so in order to not shock anyone without a warning, I embedded the video below

The war changed me: brain injury after combat

    The Washington Post has an amazing series of video reports on US soldiers who have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan with brain injury – often leading to a marked change in personality.

    The reports cover veterans who have suffered numerous types of brain injury, from shrapnel-driven penetrating brain injuries to concussion-related mild-traumatic brain injury, and how they have adapted after returning home.

    The treatments range from brain surgery to psychological rehabilitation and the interviews cover the difficulties from all angles – including the patients’, families’ and medical professionals’ perspectives.

    It’s probably worth noting that this combat brain injury is not an area without controversy and the Washington Post piece follows the US military orthodoxy on mild traumatic brain injury – that all problems after blast concussion are due to brain damage.

    Owing to the widespread use of improvised explosive devices many soldiers get caught up in a blast without suffering any visible physical injury, although they may suffer concussion due to the shock waves.


Photo by Ellen Davidson

Submitted by davidswanson on Fri, 2010-10-01 14:05

Veterans' 25 x 17 banner tells it straight to Obama at 555 PA Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.

Today at 1:00pm eastern time, U.S. military veterans hung an enormous banner on the front of the Newseum, wrapping their message around the First Amendment chiseled in five stories of limestone.

Opposed to the wars and occupations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Palestine, the vets' message said loud and clear: "MR. OBAMA: END THESE FUCKING WARS! WAR IS THE OBSCENITY."

Several veterans dropped the banner down the front of the Newseum, while others distributed special edition copies of the War Crimes Times, explaining the action and what they considered obscene.

No, The Combat Troops Are Not All Leaving Iraq

I know, MSNBC is breathlessly implying that this is the end ... it's not.

There will still be 50,000 troops in Iraq, the only difference will be the name by which they are referred


    ... They are now termed "advise and assist brigades" by the administration, and the press dutifully reported this new term in their stories.

    No wonder the press missed it. They can’t be expected to take dictation and fact-check it too.

    Normally, misleading text and headlines are so commonplace they just don’t bother one like they used to. But this is Iraq. And I’m worried that the American public may be misled into thinking that all we’ll have over there a month from now are a few clerks and supply officers. The public might wrongly perceive from a false-fact like "all combat troops gone" that the light they’re seeing at the end of this horrific tunnel is fairly strong, when maybe it’s not that strong and it’s pretty far away.

    What the administration has done (and the press would know this if they’d simply do their collective job) is rebrand the Iraqi mission with an new tag-line (“New Dawn”), and re-label six fully-combat-capable brigades with new, kinder and gentler titles. That’s basically the story. Here’s the February memo from Gates to CENTCOM giving the go-ahead to roll-out the kinder/gentler new mission tag-line that we’ll all going to hear so much about.

    The New Dawn mission tagline and associated public relations effort doesn’t fit well with the word “combat”–and actually the American people have had their fill of the term too. So no accident that the administration has simply renamed six (or so) brigade combat teams as “advise and assist” brigades. The units may have received minor personnel changes, but otherwise are in no way different from existing combat brigades in Iraq. Indeed, some or maybe all of them are already deployed and functional under our current “Operation Iraqi Freedom” mission. The only thing that has changed is the name.

Second Saturday Peace Vigil

Sat, 08/14/2010 - 6:30pm

Please join Veterans for Peace and other Peace Activists this Saturday, 6:30 - 8 PM, at the corner of 20th and J streets for the monthly Peace Vigil.

This is a chance to demonstrate your continuing commitment to ending the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Dead soldiers, dead civilians, and foolishly spent money continue, even though the media acts like it's all over.
Casualties, military and civilian, increase each month, suicides increase, costs increase, lies increase - let's increase the peace pressure.

Come early, stay late, enjoy Second Saturday, but during the Peace Vigil we want you to help us remind Sacramento that the war/occupation continues.
Bring your own anti-war sign or use one of ours.

Dear Santa ...

Bring 'em home

'Daddy, please don't go'

Number Of Iraqis Slaughtered In US War And Occupation Of Iraq 1,339,771

Number of U.S. Military Personnel Sacrificed (Officially acknowledged) In U.S. War And Occupation Of Iraq 4,667

Number Of International Occupation Force Troops Slaughtered In Afghanistan 1446

Cost of U.S. War and Occupation of Iraq $689,451,723,581

Sources for the numbers

15 months after bloodbath in Iraq, Sacramento area veteran takes his life

For those who cheered this war on - is it worth it? Seriously?

15 months after bloodbath in Iraq, young veteran takes his life

By Cynthia Hubert

Published: Thursday, Jun. 11, 2009 - 12:00 am | Page 1A

Last Modified: Thursday, Jun. 11, 2009 - 12:19 pm

    On March 7, 2007, Army Spc. Trevor Hogue was inside his barracks in Baghdad, describing his morning on the battlefield.

    "I saw things today that I think will mess me up for life," Hogue typed to his mother, Donna, as she sat at her computer thousands of miles away from Iraq, in Granite Bay.

    That day the young soldier, whose assignment included driving a Humvee through perhaps the most dangerous ZIP code on the globe, saw his sergeant blown to pieces. He saw the bodies of half of the men in his platoon torn apart. Heads were cut off and limbs severed. It happened 30 yards in front of him, and he had never been so afraid, he told his mom.

    "My arms are around you," Donna Hogue wrote. "You'll be alright."

    But Hogue never really recovered. Last week, he committed suicide by hanging himself in the backyard of his childhood home. He was 24 years old.

    According to the Army, soldiers are killing themselves at the highest rate in nearly three decades, surpassing the civilian suicide rate for the first time since the Vietnam War.

    At least 128 U.S. soldiers killed themselves last year, a number that has risen four years in a row. The death toll could be even higher this year. Through April, 91 soldiers had committed suicide.

The Final Inspection