Elaine Brower

Wakeup Call: The Outrageous and Ominous Sentencing of Lynne Stewart

Lynne StewartEditor's Note – on July 15, radical lawyer and War Criminals Watch Advisory Board member Lynne Stewart was sentenced to 10 years in prison. In February 2005, Lynne had been convicted on 7 counts of “conspiracy, providing material support to terrorists, and defrauding the U.S. government”.

The government had alleged that Lynne had facilitated communication between a man she was defending in court, fundamentalist Islamic cleric Omar Abdel Rahman, and people in Egypt.

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Philly: Army Experience Center Protesters Acquitted

By Elaine Brower

On Monday, May 24th six co-defendants (Elaine Brower, Debra Sweet, Richie Marini, Joan Pleune, Beverly Rice and Sarah Wellington, appeared in a Philadelphia courtroom in front of Judge DeLeon to stand trial for arrests dating back to September 12, 2009.

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Charges against 7 Anti-Recruiting Protesters Dropped

By Elaine Brower 

On Monday, November 2nd, seven defendants, flanked by their eye-witnesses and friends, appeared at Philadelphia Municipal Court for trial based on arrests at the “Army Experience Center” on May 2nd of this year.
 
The charges against us stemmed from a protest which began at St. Stevens Church, and followed by a lively and raucous march to the Franklin Mills Mall where the “AEC” is housed. “Escorted” by Philly Civil Affairs police, and some local police, hundreds of people gathered outside the storefront violent video gaming center aimed at pre-teen military recruitment, and voiced their dissent.

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Why all the Shock over “Shock and Awe?”

By Elaine Brower

This week Wikileaks -  a website noted for releasing classified, hard to get and damning material about what the military and the Pentagon are up to - put up a video of an airstrike in Iraq in 2007 where people were gunned down from above. Two of those killed in the first round of the attack were Reuters journalists. As the strike continued, two children were gunned down from above.
On Democracy Now! a headline on the incident reads “Massacre caught on Tape: US Military Confirms Authenticity of Their Own Chilling Video Showing Killing of Journalists.” On the show was the co-founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, and Glenn Greenwald, Salon.com blogger and author. The release of this video has caused quite a stir on the internet blogs and left-wing websites.

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A CALL TO ALL ANTI-WAR ACTIVISTS

 

PROTEST IN THE STREETS THE DAY AFTER AN ANNOUNCEMENT IS MADE TO SEND MORE TROOPS INTO AFGHANISTAN
 
By Elaine Brower, member of World Can’t Wait Steering Committee
 
We in the anti-war movement have been tirelessly and endlessly calling upon the government to end the occupations. We want our troops out of the middle east, and an end to the drone bombings that are killing thousands of innocent civilians.

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Elaine Brower to Army Recruiters: “We Will be Your Worst Nightmare”

Elaine Brower

For the last year or so I have been watching the construction of a new "Army Career Center" located a block from my office in downtown Manhattan. Once a week I would pass it and it was always closed and covered with brown paper on the big plate glass windows.
 
It is located in an ideal spot, of course, because the military hires consultants to make sure they get prime real estate to suck up the youth.

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Kicking Some Serious Ass in the Nation's Capital

By Elaine Brower

It has been eight long years since the invasion of Afghanistan, which was somewhat ignored by protesters over the Bush years, since the attack on Iraq took center stage. Obama rode into the presidency on the wave of high anti-war sentiment and promises of healthcare for all.
The democrats took of the Congress control in 2006 because people were fed up with the war in Iraq. During Obama's candidacy, youth were mobilized into action and the entire democratic base congealed to take over the White House, and further their gains in the Congress. People in this Country expressed their dissatisfaction not only with the wars, but the overall pillaging of the middle and working class people by the republican party. Obama's “political base” had certain expectations of his presidency, which at this point have been dashed against the proverbial wall. His approval ratings are plummeting, and that's not a coincidence.
This past weekend anti-war actions in Washington, D.C. began with the “Eyes Wide Open Afghanistan,” exhibit, hosted by Military Families Speak Out, American Friends Service Committee and Veterans for Peace.
On Saturday, October 3rd and Sunday, October 4th on display for a continuous 36 hours at the “Ellipse” in Washington, directly in front of the White House front lawn, volunteers arranged 859 pairs of combat boots representing the fallen soldiers and marines from Afghanistan. Since the weekend, the death toll has risen to 869. In the grass alongside the combat boots over 100 pairs of civilian shoes, only a representation of the deaths inflicted by the invasion which began in 2001. For the entire weekend, hundreds of people, if not thousands, passed by and witnessed the human cost of war. The message is one of sobering and grim reality, which was not lost on anyone who witnessed the display.
By Monday morning, activists were ready to conduct a more vociferous action, calling attention to the continuation of both the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, US torture and lack of prosecutions thereof, and the absence of any viable healthcare plan for the millions of people who need it. Hundreds gathered at McPherson Sqare Park, where a rally kicked off at 10 AM and by 11:30, people stepped off to head to the White House.
The coalition for October 5th planned diverse actions throughout the day, and something new and different was happening. It was not only planned for a weekday, but once again committed; determined and serious activists emerged from the ashes of the anti-war movement. Those protesting came from all over the country. They came with many issues that they wanted addressed by the president who campaigned on the slogan of “change”, and which had gone unheeded and unimplemented.
At the White House
At 10:45 am, a small contingent of “torture victims” broke off from the main rally to head over and with plans to stand at the White House press gate where the press secretary, Robert Gibbs, was starting the daily press briefing. Directly in front of the gate, about 25 people started chanting “Healthcare not Warfare” and “Bring the troops home now!” with 3 megaphones blaring into the garden. Press was delayed from entering the area, and had to go around the building in order to get inside.
One of the first questions asked at the briefing was about the protesters outside the gates. Gibbs responded nonchalantly by saying the White House was unaware of any protests, and that this type of thing represented the “greatness of our country.” However, the press corps went on asking questions concerning the Afghanistan war policy. Gibbs then responded by saying that there is “no doubt that we will hear in tomorrow's meetings, from members on Capitol Hill, ranges of and very diverse opinions on going forward.” When questioned further, he stated that President Obama has “no plans to walk away from the war in Afghanistan.”
Outside, however, there was a different scene, one in which clearly marked a turning point in the anti-war movement. The gathering was diffuse in its messages but cohesive in presentation. There were those wearing “orange jumpsuits” in solidarity with the detainees held in Guantanamo and Bagram, Afghanistan who protested the decision to stall on prosecuting war criminals and not shutting down “Gitmo”, which Obama had promised to do. Set up directly in front of the gate was a “detention cage”, and a “waterboarding demonstration” took place to show the media exactly what it meant to be tortured.
Anti-war protesters demanding an end to the occupation of Afghanistan and who represented over 57% of the Country, took to the street and sidewalk in front of the White House. Ending the continuing war in Iraq, healthcare for all, and prosecuting Bush era war criminals were the main messages.
Others held coffins and spoke the names of those killed in Afghanistan, while some with white “death masks” wearing the names of those killed around their neck, collapsed to the ground as if dead. On the other side, again by the press gate, activists tried to deliver a letter to Obama, only to be pushed and shoved off the sidewalk by overly-agitated secret service.
The protest was colorful, purposeful and shook the rafters of the White House itself. There was no way anyone could not know the intentions of those protesting outside the building, especiallythose sitting inside who planned to make the decisions effecting millions of people around the world.
The overwhelming peaceful nature of the protest brought a sense of calm assertive energy to the day. Even the Parks Police, generally easily agitated themselves, were patrolling the area by giving enough space for the actions happening. However, after a few hours, the mounted police pushed back the crowd, leaving those who decided to stay behind on the sidewalk.
Chained to the white house fence were “torture victims”, next to them were the Veterans for Peace who carried coffins and read the names of the dead and “Mourn the dead, Heal the Wounded, End the Wars,” wearing white “bibs” encircling their necks emblazoned with photos of those severely wounded Afghan civilians, and the “March of the Dead” white death masks, and all, laying “dead” next to them. It was a spectacular visual, and onlookers were quietly watching and chanting at the same time.
When all was said and done, 61 people remained to be arrested by the Parks Police. They were removed from the side walk in an orderly manner, some being carried, and some walking with their captors to the air-conditioned bus labeled “SPECIAL.”
And special it was. Out of the ashes of the old anti-war movement, arose a day of reconciliation, a moment in time when the forces of the people took to the streets and threatened the power that so threatens the world. Those present acted in unison, although apart. They felt each other's movements, and on a higher plane, connected, finally.
Obama and the Democrats should heed this warning. At the end of the day, Gibbs made a statement that there was no intention to “pull out of Afghanistan.” If I were them, I would rethink that decision! The people have spoken, and will speak again, soon enough.
 

 

At West Point, Anti-War Protesters Voice Their Dissent

by Elaine Brower

So President Obama did what he said he was going to do, escalate the war in Afghanistan. Not only last March, when he sent 24,000 troops, but yesterday when he made his slick announcement at West Point Military Academy in New York to send another 30,000 more starting immediately. This month, 9,000 marines are set to deploy to Helmund Province to "root out" the drug lords stronghold, and fight the Taliban "insurgents." Huh? Is this a "War on Terror" or a "War on Drugs" or are we nation building?

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It’s Not OK!

By Elaine Brower

As I sit here tonight listening to the crap about extending troop withdrawal 19 months, instead of 16 months, and keeping 50,000 troops in Iraq as so called “advisers” or “trainers” or whatever they want to nickname them, I am outraged!  I expected this, but did you?
 
Two BoysThis is wrong.  The occupation is wrong, and those of us in the anti-war movement have been screaming this at the top of our lungs for the last 6 years, even before the first boots were on the ground in Iraq.  Even before the campaign of “shock and awe” even lit up the skies above innocent people.  What the hell are we thinking? 
 
Because it isn’t Bush and Cheney, those loathsome characters we so love to hate that isn’t doing this, it’s Ok?  That because it isn’t Don Rumsfeld, that warmongering war criminal of a pig, it’s Ok?  Because the face of the occupation is now Barack Obama it’s Ok? 

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About

World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.