Veterans for Peace Milwaukee Chapter 102

Veterans for Peace Milwaukee Chapter 102 Veterans for Peace works to educate on the true costs of war & advocate for a more peaceful & just society.
Milwaukee chapter 102 is an affiliate of the national Veterans for Peace organization. VFP is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the abolishment of war. The national website is www.veteransforpeace.org
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This got buried in avalanche of other news, but he was out there first:June 2, 2020Hon. Mark T. EsperSecretary of Defens...
06/05/2020
Opinion | Secretary Esper, you violated your oath in aiding Trump’s photo op. That’s why I’m resigning.

This got buried in avalanche of other news, but he was out there first:

June 2, 2020

Hon. Mark T. Esper
Secretary of Defense
The Pentagon
Washington, D.C., 20301

Dear Secretary Esper,

I resign from the Defense Science Board, effective immediately.

When I joined the Board in early 2014, after leaving government service as Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, I again swore an oath of office, one familiar to you, that includes the commitment to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States . . . and to bear true faith and allegiance to the same.”

You recited that same oath on July 23, 2019, when you were sworn in as Secretary of Defense. On Monday, June 1, 2020, I believe that you violated that oath. Law-abiding protesters just outside the White House were dispersed using tear gas and rubber bullets — not for the sake of safety, but to clear a path for a presidential photo op. You then accompanied President Trump in walking from the White House to St. John’s Episcopal Church for that photo.

President Trump’s actions Monday night violated his oath to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed,” as well as the First Amendment “right of the people peaceably to assemble.” You may not have been able to stop President Trump from directing this appalling use of force, but you could have chosen to oppose it. Instead, you visibly supported it.

Anyone who takes the oath of office must decide where he or she will draw the line: What are the things that they will refuse to do? Secretary Esper, you have served honorably for many years, in active and reserve military duty, as Secretary of the Army, and now as Secretary of Defense. You must have thought long and hard about where that line should be drawn. I must now ask: If last night’s blatant violations do not cross the line for you, what will?

Unfortunately, it appears there may be few if any lines that President Trump is not willing to cross, so you will probably be faced with this terrible question again in the coming days. You may be asked to take, or to direct the men and women serving in the U.S. military to take, actions that further undermine the Constitution and harm Americans.

As a concerned citizen, and as a former senior defense official who cares deeply about the military, I urge you to consider closely both your future actions and your future words. For example, some could interpret literally your suggestion to the nation’s governors Monday that they need to “dominate the battlespace.” I cannot believe that you see the United States as a “battlespace,” or that you believe our citizens must be “dominated.” Such language sends an extremely dangerous signal.

You have made life-and-death decisions in combat overseas; soon you may be asked to make life-and-death decisions about using the military on American streets and against Americans. Where will you draw the line, and when will you draw it?

I hope this letter of resignation will encourage you to again contemplate the obligations you undertook in your oath of office, as well as your obligations to the men and women in our military and other Americans whose lives may be at stake. In the event that at least some other senior officials may be inclined to ask these questions after reading this letter, I am making it public.

I wish you the best, in very difficult times. The sanctity of the U.S. Constitution, and the lives of Americans, may depend on your choices.

Sincerely,

James N. Miller

James N. Miller served as under secretary of defense for policy from 2012 to 2014. He provided The Post with a copy of his resignation letter, which he submitted to Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper on Tuesday evening.

Where will you draw the line, and when will you draw it?

06/05/2020
HELL! By Founders Sing

For your viewing and listening pleasure, "Hell" by Founders Simg.

When confronted with the horrific death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police, and subsequent widespread protests, did Trump offer words of ...

With some of the restrictions on public gatherings being lifted, some Peace Action of Wisconsin Group members arecareful...
06/05/2020
Peace Action of Wisconsin

With some of the restrictions on public gatherings being lifted, some Peace Action of Wisconsin Group members are
carefully restarting the Stand for Peace with directives advised by the Milwaukee Health Commissioner. We will take all precautions and if any stay-at-home orders change, we will
suspend the Stand for Peace again.

Stand for Peace participants will obey social distancing guidelines, and we will wear masks. We have chosen corners that have little pedestrian traffic. We are limited to 10 people
gathered. If we have reached that limit, some of us will move down to the next corner. Shared signs and flags will be sanitized after each Stand. Coffee following the stand will resume only after Covid-19 is no longer a threat. We will obey any orders that change the requirements of
gathering.

Please check our website/page for updates. If you have any concerns or immunity issues, please stay at home. Your health is important, and your voice will be needed
after this crisis passes.

Stand for Peace
Saturdays, 12 noon - 1pm
June 6: Layton/Howell
June 13: Capitol/Humboldt
June 20: 43rd/Forest Home
June 27: Layton/76th

Peace, Justice and the Environment

Happy to say Tammy Baldwin was one of the prime movers on this. "In short, we oppose in the strongest terms the use of t...
06/05/2020
Senators warn Pentagon brass against 'inappropriate' use of military

Happy to say Tammy Baldwin was one of the prime movers on this.

"In short, we oppose in the strongest terms the use of the U.S. military to impede the First Amendment rights of Americans," the senators wrote. "In cases where there is a need for additional security, state and local law enforcement, with support from the state National Guard, who live with and within the communities they serve, under the control of each state, are fully capable of responding."

"In short, we oppose in the strongest terms the use of the U.S. military to impede the First Amendment rights of Americans," the senators wrote.

Kathy Kelly, who often puts herself in harm's way in the cause of peace, on the current protests::"Some observers have r...
06/05/2020
Of Plowshares and Protests: The Moral Obligation to Resist

Kathy Kelly, who often puts herself in harm's way in the cause of peace, on the current protests::

"Some observers have rushed to judge the protesters, highlighting the irrationality of looting and burning buildings in their own neighborhoods, ruining places that might even provide them services or jobs.

"Yet what could be more self-defeating and irrational than spending more money on nuclear weapons and possibly conducting nuclear bomb tests. Why squander resources on military capacity to burn other people’s homes and cities?

"The prophet Isaiah’s vision arouses action on the part of people longing to build a better world. Nix’s questions should be ours today: What’s our excuse not to do more? What will rise us?"

Kathy is a Chicago-based activist, nominated repeatedly for the Nobel Peace Prize, and spoke at our annual Armistice Day program several years ago.

On nuclear weapons and police brutality, what’s our excuse not to do more?

Two and a half years ago, top officials from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs rang the closing bell of the New Yo...
06/04/2020
Trump’s Mar-a-Lago buddy used his 'shadow' sway over the VA to promote his comic book empire

Two and a half years ago, top officials from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs rang the closing bell of the New York Stock Exchange. Standing on the podium with them was a cheering, flexing Captain America. Spider-Man waved from the trading floor below.

The event had been billed as a suicide prevention awareness campaign. No one could figure out what the Marvel characters were doing there. David Shulkin, the VA secretary at the time, said in a memoir about his tenure that he was as surprised as anyone.

The answer, it turns out, lies with the sweeping influence over the VA that President Donald Trump gave to one of his biggest donors, Marvel Entertainment chairman Ike Perlmutter.

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox. Two and a half years ago, top officials from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs rang the closing bell of the New York Stock Exchange. Standing o

Two days late, but saying what needs to be said.  There is no room for that in the Trump administration, so kiss him goo...
06/03/2020
Pentagon chief on shaky ground with White House after breaking with Trump over protest response

Two days late, but saying what needs to be said. There is no room for that in the Trump administration, so kiss him goodbye.

Secretary of Defense Mark Esper is on shaky ground with the White House after saying Wednesday that he does not support using active duty troops to quell the large-scale protests across the United States triggered by the death of George Floyd and those forces should only be used in a law enforcement...

Mike Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff:" I am deeply worried that as they execute their orders, the m...
06/03/2020
I Cannot Remain Silent

Mike Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff:
" I am deeply worried that as they execute their orders, the members of our military will be co-opted for political purposes.

"Even in the midst of the carnage we are witnessing, we must endeavor to see American cities and towns as our homes and our neighborhoods. They are not “battle spaces” to be dominated, and must never become so"

Our fellow citizens are not the enemy, and must never become so.

From our friends at Boswell Book Company, an antiracist checklist:As you've seen in newsletters and on your social media...
06/02/2020

From our friends at Boswell Book Company, an antiracist checklist:

As you've seen in newsletters and on your social media feeds, several bookstores, individuals, and organizations have published excellent lists of literary resources in the wake of nationwide protests of the police killing of George Floyd. Some of these books have flown off our shelves, and indeed many are currently backordered as publishers reprint to meet the demand. We want to share information about these titles with you.

One of two of the most requested titles is Ibram X Kendi's How to Be an Antiracist, which has appeared on several recent reading lists. This New York Times bestseller, from the National Book Award-winning author of Stamped from the Beginning (another great choice, also backordered), offers a groundbreaking approach to understanding and uprooting racism and inequality in our society-and in ourselves.

Currently tied with Antiracist in sales at Boswell is White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism, by Robin DiAngelo. In a book that Michael Eric Dyson, author of Tears We Cannot Stop, calls "vital, necessary, and beautiful," DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.

I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness, by Austin Channing Brown is an eye-opening account of growing up Black, Christian, and female in middle-class white America. It looks at how white, middle-class Evangelicalism has participated in an era of rising racial hostility and invites the reader to confront apathy, recognize God's ongoing work in the world, and discover how blackness - if we let it - can save us all.

So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. A hard-hitting but user-friendly examination of race in America. How do you explain white privilege to your white, privileged friend? Oluo guides readers of all races through subjects ranging from intersectionality and affirmative action to "model minorities" in an attempt to make the seemingly impossible possible: honest conversations about race and racism.

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander. From Bruce Smith of the Colorado State University Bookstore, as quoted in the Indie Next list: "Michelle Alexander tirelessly researches both the legal history of America's Jim Crow past and the current legal policies that contribute to the mass incarceration of black people. The text adds significantly to scholarship that contextualizes rates of incarceration among blacks and critiques of social and economic inequality."

Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World, and Become a Good Ancestor by Layla Saad is another New York Times bestselling book about which Robin DiAngelo, author of White Fragility, says, "Saad moves her readers from their heads into their hearts, and ultimately, into their practice. We won't end white supremacy through an intellectual understanding alone; we must put that understanding into action."

More books for which we've seen increased demand include Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson, Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Fire Next Time, by James Baldwin, The Color of Law, A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America, by Richard Rothstein, Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race, by Reni Eddo-Lodge, and How to Be Less Stupid About Race: On Racism, White Supremacy, and the Racial Divide by Crystal M Fleming.

June 2. On this day in 1939 a German ship full of desperate Jewish refugees sailed close enough to see the lights of Mia...
06/02/2020

June 2. On this day in 1939 a German ship full of desperate Jewish refugees sailed close enough to see the lights of Miami, Florida, but was turned away, as President Franklin Roosevelt had blocked all efforts in Congress to admit Jewish refugees. This is a good day on which to remember that justifications for wars are sometimes concocted only after the wars are over. On May 13, 1939, nine hundred Jewish refugees boarded the S.S. St. Louis of the Hamburg-America Line headed for Cuba to escape concentration camps in Germany. They had little money by the time they were forced to leave, yet outrageous fees imposed for the trip made plans for starting over in a new country even more intimidating. Once they arrived in Cuba, they believed they would eventually be welcomed into the United States. Still, tension aboard the ship led to a few suicides before entering Cuba’s harbor where they were not allowed to disembark. The captain set up a suicide patrol to keep watch on passengers during the nights they spent in the harbor, struggling to understand the reason. Then, they were ordered to leave. The captain sailed along the coast of Florida hoping to see welcome signs, but U.S. planes and Coast Guard ships arrived only to steer them away. By June 7, there was little food left when the captain announced they would have to head back to Europe. As their story spread, Holland, France, Great Britain, and Belgium offered to accept some refugees. By June 13-16, the St. Louis met up with ships heading for these countries, arriving just as WWII began.

Is it just me, or did we just get a foreshadowing of martial law?Worse question: Who will stop it? Certainly not the att...
06/02/2020

Is it just me, or did we just get a foreshadowing of martial law?

Worse question: Who will stop it? Certainly not the attorney general, Wm Barr, who participated in the use of hundreds of police and federal troops to break up a totally peaceful demonstration for a POTUS photo op. Trump is going to stay in power by any means necessary. I believe in civilian control of the military -- but there may come a time between now and Nov. 3 when the Joint Chiefs are going to resist the President and refuse an unlawful order. If that happens, I hope they have the courage to stand up for the people -- the civilians they actually work for.

Is it just me, or did we just get a foreshadowing of martial law?

Worse question: Who will stop it? Certainly not the attorney general, Wm Barr, who participated in the use of hundreds of police and federal troops to break up a totally peaceful demonstration for a POTUS photo op. Trump is going to stay in power by any means necessary. I believe in civilian control of the military -- but there may come a time between now and Nov. 3 when the Joint Chiefs are going to resist the President and refuse an unlawful order. If that happens, I hope they have the courage to stand up for the people -- the civilians they actually work for.

June 1. On this date in 1990, U.S. President George Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signed a historic agreement...
06/02/2020

June 1. On this date in 1990, U.S. President George Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signed a historic agreement to end the production of chemical weapons and begin the destruction of both nations’ stockpiled reserves.

The accord called for an eventual 80-percent reduction of the two nations’ chemical weapons arsenals, a process begun in 1992 under monitoring conducted by inspectors sent by each country to the other. By the 1990s, most nations had the technology needed to build chemical weapons, and Iraq, for one, had already used them in its war against Iran.

Consequently, a further purpose of the Bush/Gorbachev agreement was to create a new international climate that would discourage smaller countries from stockpiling chemical weapons for potential use in war. That aim succeeded. In 1993, more than 150 nations signed on to the Chemical Weapons Convention, a treaty banning chemical weapons worldwide that was ratified by the U.S. Senate in 1997. That same year, an intergovernmental organization based in The Hague, Netherlands, known as the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, was founded to oversee implementation of the weapons ban. Its duties included the inspection of chemical weapons production and destruction sites, as well as the investigation of cases where chemical weapons were alleged to have been used

. As of October 2015, about 90 percent of the world’s stockpile of chemical weapons had been destroyed. This represents an historic achievement, suggesting that similar programs for worldwide banning and destruction of nuclear weapons, and ultimately global disarmament and the abolition of war, are not beyond the reach of human aspiration and political determination.

Address

C/o Paul Moriarity, 3449 N Newhall St
Milwaukee, WI
53211

General information

The members of our chapter are comprised of veterans who served in the Vietnam era through to the present day wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. All veterans are eligible to join whether they served in peace time or combat. Associate members who are not veterans are also welcomed to join in our work to promote peace.

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Comments

A good time to grow a peace movement and cut the military spending. #VeteransForPeace #AboutFaceVeterans "A bloc of progressive House lawmakers wants to slash the Pentagon's budget in defense policy legislation, arguing extra money that would go toward military hardware would be better spent fighting the coronavirus. Twenty nine House Democrats insisted in a letter to leaders of the House Armed Services Committee that the National Defense Authorization Act should outline a budget that is "below last year's authorized level...."
“What is the point of assessing environmental impacts if those impacts are found to be severe and then they go ignored? ...The formidable opposition to siting the F-35s in Dane County is justified. Construction to prepare for the war planes, as well as their flights, would poison our water and soil, hurt our economy, and cause disproportionate harm to low-income families, children and people of color who live and go to school in the neighborhoods nearest the airport. The damage would be paid for by local government and homeowners."
"...the council adopted an advisory resolution that opposes the fighter jets and calls on the secretary of the Air Force to station them elsewhere. The measure was approved just after 2:30 a.m. on a 13-5 vote, with two absences. [Alder Rebecca] "...Kemble said the final study confirms “significant environmental impacts,” including heightened noise, adverse effects on children, PFAS contamination of ground and surface water PFAS, decreased property values, and disproportionate impacts on communities of color and low-income residents. Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce President Zach Brandon in a statement called the council’s decision “tone deaf.” [in his snooty snoot manner] ...The resolution has no binding effect on the Air Force’s decision, but council members have been told that the Air Force takes people’s feedback into account." [All along the Air Force has pretended to care what people think and has said they would go elsewhere if Madison and those around the base didn't want the jets.]
I believe the root problem with the VA is the management, high up and those who support their game. The problem is the people who seek to privatize the VA. They undermine and under staff. They have instituted bogus whistle-blower protections but have a system where the rank and file workers live in constant fear of losing their jobs if they don't tow the line or report problems. In the meantime, their is little to no accountability for those high up who undermine the VA. * https://saveourva.org/ * https://www.veteransforpeace.org/take-action/stop-privatization-veterans-health-administration
This is the level of intelligence of the average blind militarists that promote F-35's over human need. We've been dealing with hundreds of these people in the past weeks. If you'd like to add some valid logic to the mix,like us on the Facebook... https://www.facebook.com/nof35sinMadison/
They hid the effects, as did the manufacturers. https://www.militarypoisons.org/ The Pentagon: Exposing The Hidden Polluter of Water - A Project of the WILPF US Disarm/End War and Earth Democracy Committees ~ Womens International League for Peace and Freedom ~ Military PFAS Contamination Has Become a National Crisis What's in your water?
For vets/families (Let's end "22" a day)
Patrick Ryan from USA today wrote this article on "Dark Water," the movie that describes how DuPont poisoned West Virginia with chemicals by pouring the toxic substances into the water for years. I read this nonsense in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel today, Dec 8, 2019. This guy is a stooge trying to shelter the chemical companies and Dupont. It's not that the farmer believed that Dupont killed his cows. They killed his frickin' cows. They paid the farmer to dispose of "nonhazardous" waste on his property. His entire herd of cows was dead in a year, and you could see the evidence of chemical poisoning. The author says: "Rob's work eventually leads to a study that finds roughly 70,000 people were drinking tainted water with traces of PFOA, a toxic chemical used in the production of Teflon products such as non-stick pans until 2013." Such B.S. Per and Poly Fluoroalkyl Substances: PFOS and PFAS are used to this day. They pretend like they have switched to some safe alternative. The alternatives are almost the same chemicals, and they have not been tested thoroughly, definitely not long term much less short term. Dupont was not "allegedly" aware of how hazardous these chemicals were. There is documentation showing the testing and research that showed exactly how seriously hazardous these chemicals are. There is nothing alleged about it. We need local newspapers to covers these sorts of topics. USA Today is like the McDonald's of newspapers: a bunch of corrupt, corporate sleazebags. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that PFAS chemicals are in the blood of at least 98% of the US population. Human beings need to start defending themselves against greedy business owners and the corrupt politicians they own. In Milwaukee and Madison our water is being similarly poised, except by the US military and others using poisonous firefighting foam. In other places, like Marinette, facilities that manufacture the chemicals are allowing them to get into the water and into our soil. Here's the USA Today author was serving chemical corporations and hiding truth... Patrick Ryan https://www.usatoday.com/staff/paryan/patrick-ryan/
I am a 94 year old veteran of WW 2. I lost my lower left leg to a German mine and much of my hearing to lying beside a 30 caliber machine gun in action. The current VA Hospitals, including the one I usually attend in Seattle have excellent teams of doctors who serve me and others well. Privatization would break up these teams and diminish te quality of services we receive. NO TO PRIVATIZAION. Ed Daniel
Have the monthly meetings been changed to Tuesdays? From Mondays? Permanently?