Join the Resistance in October!


THE NATION--October, 2011, is shaping up to make history as the month with the most pervasive and simultaneous acts of resistance that the U.S. has ever seen.  Catholic Workers will be joining in acts of resistance in all four corners as well as the center of the United States.  

Actions that resist war and injustice are scheduled in Washington, DC. Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Miami, New York City, and Portland.  Plus, new resistance and occupation actions are springing up daily.  

Some the sustained actions have already begun.  Check the individual web sites for specific details.  

Below are links to some:

National Catholic Worker Gathering Resistance
Creech Air Force Base
Las Vegas

SOA Watch Resistance Action
US Southern Command Center
Miami Florida

October 2011!
A sustained occupation of Freedom Plaza in Washington, DC to resist war and economic injustice.

Occupy Wall Street!
A sustained, non-violent occupation of Liberty Park on Wall Street, New York City

Occupy Chicago
A sustained, non-violent picket in front of the Federal Reserve, Chicago

Occupy Portland
A sustained, non-violent occupation at Waterfront near SW Ankeny and Naito Parkway, Portland

Occupy Boston
Facebook Page only:

Los Angeles
A sustained, non-violent occupation at Pershing Square, Los Angeles

And every place else!

Taking the SOA to Trial: the SOA Watch 15

WASHINGTON, DC--Fifteen human rights advocates are scheduled to go on trial on Monday, September 12, 2011 for engaging in nonviolent direct action at the White House in Washington, DC. The “White House 27,” a group of human rights advocates who staged a die-in on the White House sidewalk on April 10, 2011, to call on President Obama to shut down the notorious School of the Americas (renamed the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation) and to put an end to the U.S. militarization of the Americas. The 15 defendants are facing the criminal charges of “failure to obey a lawful order” and “blocking and incommoding.” Despite facing a criminal trial, the human rights advocates are not intimidated.

The SOA Watch 15 are:
Alice Gerard, NY
Ann Tiffany, NY
Chris Gaunt, IA
David Barrows, DC
Ed Kinane, NY
Eve Tetaz, DC
Jack Gilroy, NY
Judith Kelly, VA
Maia Rodriguez, VA
Megan Felt, IA
Nico Udu-gama, DC
Paki Wieland, MA
Priscilla Treska, OH
Sarah Sommers, OH
Scott Wright, DC

The defendants plan to use their trial to shed light on the past and present history of US militarization and economic domination of Latin America, and to repeat the call to President Obama to shut down the School of the Americas by executive order.


Tar Sands! 1,252 Arrested during 2-Week Demonstration

Ozone Decision Spikes Arrest Numbers at White House Pipeline Protest

Photo by Shadia Fayne Wood

WASHINGTON– The largest environmental civil disobedience in decades concluded at the White House this morning, September 3, 2011, with organizers pledging to escalate a nationwide campaign to push President Obama to deny the permit for a new tar sands oil pipeline.

“Given yesterday’s baffling cave on ozone standards, the need for a fighting environmental movement has never been more clear,” said Bill McKibben, who spearheaded the protest. “That movement is being born right here in front of the White House and reverberating around the country.”

The proposed Keystone XL pipeline has become the most important environmental decision facing President Obama before the 2012 election and sparked nationwide opposition, from Nebraska ranchers to former Obama campaigners. A petition with 617,428 names opposing the pipeline will be delivered to the White House today.

Over the course of the two-week sit-in 1,252 Americans were arrested, including top climate scientists, landowners from Texas and Nebraska, former Obama for America staffers, First Nations leaders from Canada, and notable individuals including Bill McKibben, former White House official Gus Speth, NASA scientist Dr. James Hansen, actor Daryl Hannah, filmmaker Josh Fox, and author Naomi Klein.

“Back home we are fighting to protect our land and water. This week, we decided to bring that fight to the President’s doorstep,” said Jane Kleeb, Director of BOLD Nebraska, who led a delegation of Nebraskans who were arrested this morning. “We are acting on our values and expect our President to act as well.”

Last week, nearly every major environmental group in the country signed on to a letter demanding President Obama deny the pipeline permit. “There is not an inch of daylight between our policy position on the Keystone XL pipeline, and those of the protesters being arrested daily outside the White House,” wrote the groups in their letter.

Vice President Al Gore also added his support to the protest, writing, “the leaders of the top environmental groups in the country, the Republican Governor of Nebraska, and millions of people around the country—including hundreds of people who have bravely participated in civil disobedience at the White House—all agree on one thing: President Obama should block a planned pipeline from the tar sands of Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico. The tar sands are the dirtiest source of fuel on the planet.”

Many of the people arrested at the White House wore Obama 2008 buttons as they were taken away in handcuffs.

“We are not going to do President Obama the favor of attacking him,” said McKibben. “We are going to hold the Obama campaign to the standard it set in 2008. Denying this pipeline would send a jolt of electricity through the people that elected this president.”

Executive director of the 1.4 million-member Sierra Club, Michael Brune, warned of the consequences if President Obama approved Keystone XL: “We will see an enthusiasm deficit. We won’t see our members volunteering 20 or 25 or 30 hours a week. We won’t see the same passion and intensity.”

Courtney Hight, a former Youth Vote Director in Florida and White House Council on Environmental Quality staffer, now co-director of the Energy Action Coalition, said, “Young people mobilized in record numbers in 2008 to elect a leader they believed would fulfill his promise. Yesterday, I was arrested with other young voters to call on President Obama to fulfill his promise and stand up to Big Oil.”

The White House is receiving pressure from citizens north of the border, as well. Activists in Ottawa are planning a civil-disobedience protest on Parliament Hill this September 26.

“The Canadian government is acting as the global advertising agency of the tar sands oil industry,” said author and activist Naomi Klein, who was arrested Friday. “Canadians have come to appeal directly to President Obama, to demand that he stop this pipeline and make good on his 2008 election promises.”

The proposed 1,700 mile Keystone XL pipeline would carry dirty, tar sands oil from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. A rupture in the pipeline could cause a BP style oil spill in America’s heartland, over the source of fresh drinking water for 20 million people. NASA’s top climate scientist says that fully developing the tar sands in Canada would mean “essentially game over” for the climate.

For more information, please visit

Arrests in Washington, DC Top 700!

WASHINGTON, DC — More than 700 people from across the country have people been at the White House for taking part in a sit-in to pressure President Obama to deny the permit for a massive new oil pipeline.

Those arrested included leading environmentalist Bill McKibben, former White House official and Yale dean Gus Speth, and gay rights activist Lt. Dan Choi. More than 2,000 more people are expected to take part in sit-ins at the White House every day through September 2.  The action began August 20.  

In what has quickly emerged as President’s biggest environmental test before the 2012 election, the Obama Administration must decide if it will grant a permit to a Canadian company, TransCanada, to allow it to build the Keystone XL, a 1,700 mile long pipeline that would carry tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada, down along the spine of the U.S. to the Gulf Coast.

“It’s not the easiest thing on earth for law-abiding folk to come risk arrest. But this pipeline has emerged as the single clear test of the president’s willingness to fight for the environment,” said environmentalist and author Bill McKibben, who is spearheading the protests and was arrested this morning. “So I wore my Obama ’08 button, and I carry a great deal of hope in my heart that we will see that old Obama emerge.”

If built, the pipeline could bring as much as 900,000 barrels per day through the U.S., and put fresh water, clean air and the climate at risk. The world’s most famous climatologist, NASA’s Dr. James Hansen, wrote that if the pipeline is built and the tar sands are fully developed, it is essentially “game over” for the climate.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT-I) and celebrities Mark Ruffalo, Thom Yorke, Danny Glover, and Josh Fox and have endorsed the protest. Twenty of the nation’s top scientists also wrote a letter urging President Obama to stop the pipeline.

Over the next two weeks the sit-ins will feature a diverse coalition of Americans, including a large contingent of landowners and ranchers along the pipeline route.

More information at

BART Protests Continue into Fourth Week

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A scuffle broke out at a BART station, but after the third week of BART protests all stations remained open with far fewer arrests. This BART protest was noticeably different from the last two. There were no station shut downs and no delays.

Organizers knew they were losing the support of the public. As a result, this Monday's demonstration was a lot less disruptive. The group took a different approach this time around, knowing full well that commuters were growing weary of their weekly protests. They stayed off the BART platform, and instead, started their demonstration outside the Civic Center station.
Related Photos

"Since the BART Police have blamed us for shutting stations, we've decided not to give them a reason to do that again," said a protester who did not want to be identified.

Two people were arrested at the Embarcadero BART station after protesters began to chant "You can't shoot us all."

Police were worried about emotions running high and have said they are not going to be as lenient as they have been during past demonstrations. So far this summer, there have been three protests at the Civic Center BART station. The activist group 'Anonymous' promises there will be a protest every week until their demands are met.

The reasons that brought the protesters together remained the same. They're upset about the shooting death of a homeless man by BART police and BART's decision to shut down cellphone service during a planned protest.

As was the case last week, dozens marched down Market Street, but this time, protesters did not disrupt traffic as they, for the most part, stayed on the sidewalk. Officers with SFPD made sure of that. Last week, the chief warned their response was going to be much quicker this time.

The only time things got intense was when protesters entered the Powell, Montgomery and Embarcadero stations. Everyone obeyed police orders and stayed behind the fare gates except for one of the leaders of the demonstration, Krystof. He shouted, "No Justice, No Peace. Disband the BART Police!" Officers arrested him and another man for interfering with BART operations.

Dozens have been arrested in the ongoing protests.
"They can't arrest me for having a T-shirt they don't like. They can't arrest me for saying something they don't like. They can't. They are, but that's the problem with the BART Police is that they're out of control," said Krystof.

In the end, there were no station closures, and no mass arrests like there were last week, which was a big relief to commuters who were tired of the delays.

"Bus or BART last Monday was a mess. So yeah, I'm glad to hear that it's not closed today," said BART rider Shannon Valenti.

"Maybe things are going to de-escalate a little bit and that would be good for dialogue between the two sides," said BART rider Frank Tse.

BART police estimates that about 40 people took part in Monday's demonstration.

Also, several public interest groups asked the Federal Communications Commission to declare that BART broke telecom laws when it cut off cellphone service earlier this month. The groups, including the San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation say BART's actions set a dangerous example. BART says it was intended to keep passengers safe. The FCC is now reviewing the petition.

Earlier in the day, it was reported that the BART protests have had an impact on Muni. When BART stations are shut down, access to Muni Metro is also cut off. Muni officials say the last protest cost about $70,000 is shuttles and extra staff. And that does not count lost revenue, said Muni spokesperson Paul Rose.

"We're urging the protesters to let service continue, let our passengers get from Point A to Point B," said Rose.

Protesters have been upset that commuters and city officials have been blaming them for service disruptions.
"It's a sad day for our democracy when protesters are vilified in the name of a comfortable commute. BPD needs reform," said blogger Alex Emslie (@SFNewsReporter) via Twitter.

But riders question whether the majority of people who show up to protest even truly know what they are protesting about.

"Half of them probably couldn't even tell you what the actual protest is going to be about today," BART rider Mariano Flores said.

BART Board of Directors member Lynette Sweet says she has been trying to negotiate with some of the protesters, some of whom, she says, seem willing to talk, but she was unable to convince them to cancel Monday's protest.

Protesters vow the demonstrations will continue.


Army Widow Dragged Out of Rumfeld Book Signing

This photo of Ashley Joppa-Haggeman was taken right before she was thrown out.

The widow of a U.S. Army Ranger was ejected from a book signing event after confronting former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

Ashley Joppa-Haggeman’s husband Staff Sgt. Jared Hagemann took his own life after struggling with another upcoming deployment to Afghanistan following multiple previous deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.

Rumsfeld was at Joint Base Lewis-McChord on Friday, August 26th for a book signing event to promote his new book “Knowns and Unknowns.”

According to The News Tribune Joppa-Hagemann, who was accompanied by Jorge Gonzalez, executive director of Coffee Strong, a local veterans support organization, “introduced herself [to Rumsfeld] by handing a copy of her husband’s funeral program to Rumsfeld, telling him that her husband joined the military because he believed the lies told by Rumsfeld during his tenure with the Bush Administration.”

Rumsfeld is reported to have responded, “Oh yeah, I heard about that.” 

Security agents and military police officers forcibly removed (“dragged”) Joppa-Hagemann and Gonzalez from the Post Exchange, the venue for the book signing event.

Joppa-Hagemann spoke just three days earlier at the State of the Soldier forum in Tacoma where she told the story of her husband’s struggle. 

Besides the event at the military base, Rumsfeld made no public appearances.  According to the book’s publisher, The Penguin Group, “The Known and Unknown tour will stop in Chicago, D.C., The Gerald Ford Museum, Fullerton, CA, The Nixon Library, The Reagan Library and the David Horowitz Freedom Center. There are two stops in Chicago and the DC event is at the Heritage Foundation.”  


Ranger’s widow ejected from book signing, posted by Matt Misterek on August 27, 2011 in The News Tribune: 

Video of Ashley Joppa-Hagemann’s testimony at the State of the Soldier forum in Tacoma on August 23, 2011, taken by Todd Boyle:

Video by Todd Boyle of news story on Joppa-Hagemann:

Contact:  Leonard Eiger
                Coordinator – Puget Sound Nuclear Weapon Free Zone

Remembering George Lester Jackson

August 21st marked the 40th anniversary of the execution of George Lester Jackson. The Chicago- born Jackson would have celebrated his 70th birthday on September 23rd.

Jackson was a prisoner who became an author, a member of the Black Panther Party, and co-founder of the Black Guerrilla Family prison organization. He achieved global fame as one of the Soledad Brothers before being executed by prison guards in San Quentin Prison.

Freedom Archives has produced a video based on an edited portion of Prisons on Fire (2001) with video editing by Oriana Bolden.

George Jackson - 40 year commemoration from Freedom Archives on Vimeo.