The Old AUMF and the New: Peace Activists Still Protesting Endless, Pointless Wars

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The Old AUMF and the New: Peace Activists Still Protesting Endless, Pointless Wars

Peace activists in Boston protest the US bombing of Syria and Iraq on February 21, 2015. (Photo: ProtestPhotos1/flickr)

Just in case anyone out there reads this, I want you all to know that there are still people standing out for peace.

We protested in Boston in the frigid cold on a recent Saturday that recalled the equally frigid Saturday on February 15 in 2003 when we traveled to New York, joining the millions around the world to protest the coming U.S. invasion of Iraq.

There is a weekly protest every Saturday at 1 pm in Boston, at Park Street, near the T station and has been since 1998, when the Committee on Peace and Human Rights began standing out to protest the sanctions on Iraq that killed half a million children and the sporadic bombing that followed upon the Bush attack of 1991.

I don't go all the time, but I did this time. It's a fun protest even in the freezing cold, soap-box style, everyone who attends is invited to say a few words about why they are there, what they are thinking.

Here is some of my speech:

The global situation is careening out of control.

Every country the U.S. and/or NATO have bombed is in a state of chaos: Libya, Iraq, Yemen, Syria, Somalia, and Afghanistan. US warmongers are not satisfied with all that chaos, they are sparring with Russia over the Ukraine – playing a very dangerous game with a nuclear armed power.

People are dislocated, refugees from war or persecution exceed 50 million for the first time since World War II.

Governments, particularly ours, like to think they can create chaos and manage it and hang onto their power.

But there is an imperial overreach at work—the Pentagon, the US government and multinational corporations are not only misusing power but are mad with power—deluded—and are hoodlums; the politicians, corporations and military are a cabal of global gangsters. There is no accountability.

The madness of these entities knows no boundaries—not borders of nations and no psychological restraint or boundary which is why I fear we are swiftly moving into a situation where nuclear weapons may be used.

The only thing that has ever put the brakes on such an out of control situation is people in the streets and we need tens of millions of people in the streets around the world demanding an end to insanity.

People are moving—there is an enormous amount of global dissent but it's not enough—yet.

I hope that soon we will see millions in the streets day after day and week after week, so spread the word.

I can only speak for myself but I have to say that standing with you for peace and justice out of a great love of humanity with all our imperfections and for love of our planet earth—Mother Earth—is the only answer I know of.

Once more, I am grateful that you are here, and it is a joy of my life to be able to get downtown—despite problems with the T and the challenge of the weather—and stand with you here at Park Street as we set our good words into the wind against the mad policies of destructive disaster…

Thea Paneth

Thea Paneth

Thea Paneth is a coordinating committee member of United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ), a national peace coalition founded in 2003. UFPJ is currently working on a "Peace Pledge" campaign, details of which can be found here.

 

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