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Anti-war GIs relive their resistance at Midwest conference

From left: Dr. Tran Xuan Thao, Susan Schnall, Jon Hutto, Nathan Smith, David Cortright at Voices of Conscience conference, University of Notre Dame, May 22.A three-day conference celebrating the history of the movement of active-duty U.S. Armed Forces members who opposed U.S. wars against Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan ended May 24 at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind.While the Kroc Institute for Peace Studies provided an academic setting, the nearly 100 participants went beyond scholarly discussion. Many were themselves veterans from the front lines of the struggle, and plenty served time in stockades, brigs and military prisons for their resistance to war, racism and officers’ bullying. Civilian supporters also took their share of arrests. The racist cops in base towns of the rural South who served the interests of the Pentagon were able to arrest without regard for the law or the rights of the people involved.Along with civilian supporters, the military veterans produced dozens of memoirs, histories and novels and at least three documentary films, including one opera, chronicling these struggles. These focused on the period beginning in 1965, when the U.S. began to send as many as 543,000 troops to occupy Vietnam, to 1975, when the last U.S. officials were driven out by the victorious Vietnamese liberation fighters.That so many veteran political activists are still committed to preserving the history of their struggles and battling future wars can be credited to the historic struggle of the Vietnamese people. The liberation struggle’s presence permeated the mood of the conference. Talks by Dr. Tran Xuan Thao, director of the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) and Madame Ton-Nu-Thi Ninh, president of the Ho Chi Minh City Peace and Development Foundation and former vice chair of Vietnam’s National Assembly Foreign Affairs Committee, reminded the participants of the patient diplomacy of the Vietnamese as they worked with all political currents to help win their independence.Learning from the VietnameseRobert Chenoweth, a helicopter mechanic and sergeant captured during the 1968 Tet Offensive, talked about being held for five years; during that time he helped form a “peace committee” among the prisoners of war who taped anti-war statements. Chenoweth described how the Vietnamese treated them with more than humanity. “Indoctrination? They simply taught us  thousands of years of Vietnamese history as a nation.” Then, barely able to speak through his tears, he said, “What they gave us to eat was more than twice as much as what the Vietnamese guards ate.” At that point Chenoweth wasn’t the only one in the room crying.Film presentations featured Connie Field and her new film, “The Whistleblower of My Lai,” the story of Sgt. Hugh Thompson and his helicopter crew who stopped at least some of the killing when they turned their guns around (workers.org/2016/12/20/war-hero-dies); Academy Award winner Barbara Kopple and her films,“Winter Soldier” and “Shelter”; and David Zeiger and his film, “Sir! No Sir!”Zeiger and Josh Gould, organizers at the Oleo Strut coffee house near Fort Hood, Texas, told their stories at the conference. (The “coffee-house movement” gave dissident or just unhappy GIs a place to meet near military bases.) Skip Delano, who returned from a tour in Vietnam, told of publishing the dissident newspaper, Left Face.American Servicemen’s Union key organizer Johnnie Lewis, now transgender (male to female), told of publishing anti-war and anti-racist GI newspapers in and out of the Fort Dix and other stockades, where she organized mess-hall actions and refusals of service, along with Black GI Henry Mills during much of 1969.“Within the concertina wire of the Fort Dix Stockade,” Lewis told one workshop, “the ASU, in alliance with GI members of the Black Panther Party, the Young Lords, and others, organized among the more than 2,000 prisoners, distributing copies of The Bond [ASU newpaper] and other anti-war/anti-racism literature, organizing mess hall strikes, speaking out in pro-imperialist indoctrination sessions, taking actions against cruel guards — dropping heavy footlockers on them from second-story stairwells — and organizing a prisoner-based justice system to take care of snitches. ASU member Terry Klug organized and led a rebellion of 200 prisoners in June 1969, burning down half the stockade.”The ASU, said Lewis, showed clearly that the single most important focus of its organizing work among working-class GIs and rank-and-file GIs of color was where the GIs worked, were imprisoned, and fought and died.Other heroes and sheroes of the Vietnam GI movement were present, including Pfc. J.J. Johnson, one of the Fort Hood 3 — the first publicized GIs who refused to fight in Vietnam in 1966 — who were sentenced to three years in prison. Also present was Lt. Susan Schnall, a Navy nurse who hired a small plane in 1969 and dropped anti-war leaflets on ships and military bases in California. Schnall currently organizes for Veterans For Peace and works to relieve Agent Orange poisoning in Vietnam and among U.S. veterans.Resisting the war on IraqMembers of the subsequent generation of anti-war GIs from the new professional U.S. military were also present. While GI resistance during the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan never reached the breadth it did in the conscript military of the Vietnam period, individual troops voiced their moral outrage and noted that at moments their organizing created problems for the Pentagon.Army enlistee Camilo Mejia, author of “Road from Ar Ramadi,” whose family was from Nicaragua, was stationed in Iraq in 2003 following the U.S.-British invasion. He refused to return to the war after a furlough, was charged with desertion and was sentenced to a year in prison. Working in the Miami area,Mejia fights against new imperialist wars and for the rights of immigrants in the U.S.Jonathan Hutto, author of “Antiwar Soldier: How to Dissent Within the Ranks of the Military,” was a communications specialist in the Navy aboard the USS Roosevelt in the Persian Gulf in 2006. Hutto co-founded the Appeal for Redress, a statement against the Iraq War signed eventually by 2,000 service members. Hutto works against war and for African-American rights in Maryland.Angie Hines was stationed on the guided missile USS Cowpens, which fired the first ordinance that opened the Iraq War. She speaks of harassment of women in the Armed Forces as she counters military recruiters in the Portland, Ore., area.The three Iraq War veterans — who were themselves caught up in what could be called the economic draft — showed that the class struggle still exists in the professional military and that veterans can continue to play an important role in the struggle against imperialist war. Many do so today as part of Veterans For Peace or similar organizations.Dozens of others contributed to the discussion, including Professor David Cortright, author of “Soldiers in Revolt” and, the organizer, with his Kroc Institute staff, of this effective conference; Harry Haines, one of the few out gay anti-war draftees; and James Lewes, creator of the GI Press Project that contains images and searchable text from thousands of documents (tinyurl.com/ycgjcqwe). For more information on the conference, see tinyurl.com/y9ftga4g.Catalinotto is author of “Turn the Guns Around: Mutinies, Soldier Revolts and Revolutions.” He spoke at a conference workshop on “Issues of class, race and gender in resistance movements.”FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this read more

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Bill To Give Attorney General Power To Prosecute Local Cases Advances In Senate

first_imgTheStateHouseFile.comINDIANAPOLIS—County prosecutors and defense attorneys were united Tuesday in opposition to legislation that would allow the attorney general’s office to pursue criminal cases that locals decline.In spite of overwhelming testimony against Senate Bill 436, the proposed legislation passed the Senate Corrections and Criminal Code Committee by a 6-3 vote. It now heads to the full Senate for action.Sen. Michael Young, R-Indianapolis, right, chairs the Corrections and Criminal Code Committee and authored the bill allowing the attorney general’s office to assume jurisdiction over local prosecutors in some cases. Photo by Victoria Ratliff, TheStatehouseFile.com.The amended version of the bill, authored by Sen. Michael Young, R-Indianapolis, would allow the state’s attorney general to name a special prosecutor to pursue criminal cases when local prosecutors decide against filing charges.David Powell, a senior council of Prosecuting Attorney’s Council, was adamant in his opposition to the bill.“The one thing I can say without hesitation, having been involved for almost four decades in this business, is prosecutorial discussion is the holy grail,” Powell said, adding that it should be up to the local prosecutor to decide what to charge or not charge.Much of the discussion about the bill focused on the decision last year by Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears to not prosecute people arrested with small amounts of marijuana in their possession.David Powell of the Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council opposed legislation that would usurp the authority of local prosecutors. Photo by Victoria Ratliff, TheStatehouseFile.com.Michael Moore of Indiana Public Defender Council said that SB 436 overrides the voices of local voters who might have selected a prosecutor because he or she declined to prosecute certain low-level crimes. He noted that many times people of color or living in poverty are disproportionately affected by the prosecution of low-level crimes.Young said he began working on the bill after learning some prosecutors are failing to pursue some crimes.“What gives me concern is this growing trend throughout the country where prosecutors aren’t simply prosecuting crimes as a whole, as a policy,” Young said. Some examples he gave were damage to one’s property by rioting and stealing less than $900 from a business or person among other crimes.During the hearing, 15 people testified and only Parvonay Stover of the attorney general’s office wasn’t opposed to it. She said the attorney general is neutral on it.“That being said, if the General Assembly decides to move ahead with this concept, then we are ready and willing to help in whatever way we can,” Stover said. “But we think it’s merely a band aid to the underlying problem.” She did not elaborate.Katie Blair, director of Advocacy and Public Policy for the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana, said the legislation would undermine the power of voters to hold local prosecutors accountable for their actions.Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes, said that she found the bill to be “amazingly wrong” and unconstitutional. She is a member of the committee and voted against the bill.“It’s going to be incredibly hard to determine what is an announced categorical refusal versus a practice that may be done quietly, and not be announced,” she said. “I think one of the things this bill will do is to encourage prosecutors to do something and not make it transparent.”FOOTNOTE: Lacey Watt is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students. By Lacey Watt FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

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Soft robots go for color, camouflage

first_imgLast year, a team of researchers led by George Whitesides, the Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers University Professor, broke new engineering ground when they developed soft, silicone-based robots inspired by creatures like starfish and squid.Now, they’re working to give those robots the ability to disguise themselves.As demonstrated in an Aug. 16 paper published in Science, researchers have developed a system — again, inspired by nature — that allows the soft robots to either camouflage themselves against a background, or to make bold color displays. Such a “dynamic coloration” system could one day have a host of uses, ranging from helping doctors plan complex surgeries to acting as a visual marker to help search crews following a disaster, said Stephen Morin, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology and first author of the paper.“When we began working on soft robots, we were inspired by soft organisms, including octopi and squid,” Morin said. “One of the fascinating characteristics of these animals is their ability to control their appearance, and that inspired us to take this idea further and explore dynamic coloration. I think the important thing we’ve shown in this paper is that even when using simple systems — in this case we have simple, open-ended micro-channels — you can achieve a great deal in terms of your ability to camouflage an object, or to display where an object is.”“One of the most interesting questions in science is, ‘Why do animals have the shape and color and capabilities that they do?’ ” said Whitesides. “Evolution might lead to a particular form, but why? One function of our work on robotics is to give us, and others interested in this kind of question, systems that we can use to test ideas. Here the question might be: ‘How does a small crawling organism most efficiently disguise (or advertise) itself in leaves?’ These robots are test-beds for ideas about form and color and movement.”Just as with the soft robots, the “color layers” used in the camouflage start as molds created using 3-D printers. Silicone is then poured into the molds to create micro-channels, which are topped with another layer of silicone. The layers can be created as a separate sheet that sits atop the soft robots, or incorporated directly into their structure. Once created, researchers can pump colored liquids into the channels, causing the robot to mimic the colors and patterns of its environment.The system’s camouflage capabilities aren’t limited to visible colors though.By pumping heated or cooled liquids into the channels, researchers can camouflage the robots thermally (infrared color). Other tests described in the Science paper used fluorescent liquids that allowed the color layers to literally glow in the dark.“There is an enormous amount of spectral control we can exert with this system,” Morin said. “We can design color layers with multiple channels, which can be activated independently. We’ve only begun to scratch the surface, I think, of what’s possible.”The uses for the color-layer technology, however, don’t end at camouflage.Just as animals use color change to communicate, Morin envisions robots using the system as a way to signal their position, both to other robots, and to the public. As an example, he cited the possible use of the soft machines during search and rescue operations following a disaster. In dimly lit conditions, he said, a robot that stands out from its surroundings (or even glows in the dark) could be useful in leading rescue crews trying to locate survivors.Going forward, Morin said, he hopes to explore more complex systems that use multiple color layers to achieve finer control over camouflage and display colors, as well as ways to create systems — using valves and other controls — that would allow the robots to operate autonomously.“There are a number of directions this technology could go in,” he said. “Some of them are similar to the course we have taken thus far, but I think there are other aspects to explore – such as how the robots interact with their environment — that are related to what soft robots may be doing in the future.“What we hope is that this work can inspire other researchers to think about these problems and approach them from different angles,” he continued. “There are many biologists who are studying animal behavior as it relates to camouflage, and they use different models to do that. We think something like this might enable them to explore new questions, and that will be valuable.”last_img read more

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AP1 lifts first half return to 5.2% after busy property phase

first_imgSwedish pension buffer fund AP1 recorded a 5.2% investment return for the first half of 2017, up from the 3.5% generated in the same period in 2016, according to interim data.The fund’s assets swelled to SEK322.9bn (€33.2bn) by the end of June, from SEK310.5bn at the end of December. It passed SEK3.7bn on to the Swedish pension system in the six-month period for the payment of state benefits.Johan Magnusson, AP1’s chief executive, said: “Naturally we are delighted to have helped strengthen the Swedish pension system for so many years, but the outlook for being able to [continue] delivering a high real return is more demanding. “The market conditions with long-term low interest rates are the primary factor that has increased returns and asset prices in such a way that it is realistic to expect a period of lower returns than normal for most classes of assets.” The pension fund said that it had been particularly active in its real estate investment activity in the reporting period, making several direct investments.These included increasing its holding of retail properties in Secore Fastigheter, the continued expansion of its investment in real estate company Willhem, as well as a new joint venture with Finnish pensions insurance company Elo.The Swedish fund said its return outperformed its strategic benchmark by 1.2 percentage points in the January-to-June period, which equated to SEK3.6bn.Magnusson said that as one of the referral bodies, AP1 would be familiarising itself with the details of the proposal for revised investment rules for the AP funds that the government recently presented.“Generally speaking, however, we welcome the proposal as it brings our current investment rules up to date,” he said.More modern, flexible rules could give AP1 a better foundation to achieve its return target in the long term, Magnusson said.last_img read more

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Pairing suits with sneakers to raise awareness

first_imgStatehouse—This year alone, more than 37,000 Hoosiers will be diagnosed with cancer, with over 13,000 dying from the disease. Many of us are personally impacted by cancer and are all too familiar with the devastation it causes. Thankfully, the American Cancer Society is reporting a steady decline in the cancer death rate. By educating ourselves about cancer prevention, screening, and early detection, more lives can be saved.To help kick off National Cancer Prevention Month in February, Both Representatives Randy Frye and Randy Lyness along with many others participated in the Suits and Sneakers Challenge at the Statehouse and paired their favorite tennis shoes with their suits during the legislative session. This year, the nationwide initiative centers on childhood cancer research, services, and awareness.  The American Cancer Society provides many ways to get involved in the fight against cancer. Whether it’s volunteering, making a donation or participating in a fundraising event, there are ways we can all help. To learn more about cancer prevention, recommended screenings and support after diagnosis, visit cancer.org today.last_img read more

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Mikel brands Hazard laziest player

first_imgRelatedPosts Lampard: I still have confidence in Tomori Stoke City manager salutes Mikel Lampard: Tomori won’t leave Chelsea Eden Hazard has been brandished the “laziest player I have played with” by former Chelsea teammate, John Obi Mikel, while also insisting Hazard remained an “incredible talent”. Mikel, now playing in Turkey, spent 11 seasons at Chelsea, five of them alongside Hazard, but was far from complimentary of the Real Madrid forward’s work ethic, while insisting Chelsea boss Frank Lampard was the hardest working. Hazard’s start to life in Spain has not gone to plan, with injuries hampering his progress. Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has questioned the fitness work Hazard has put in earlier this month, with former teammate Mikel the latest to question Hazard’s methods. “The laziest player I have played alongside is Eden Hazard,” Mikel told beIN Sports in Turkey. “Hazard has an incredible talent, maybe not as good as [Lionel] Messi, but he can do whatever he wants with the ball at his feet. “He didn’t like to train hard. While we were working he was waiting for us to finish training just standing there. But on Sundays he was always man of the match, it was unbelievable.” When asked who the hardest working player he’s played alongside was he said “Frank Lampard,” with no hesitation whatsoever.Tags: Arsene WengerChelsea FCEden HazardFrank LampardJohn Obi Mikellast_img read more

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Viz books ticket for Ascot

first_imgViztoria returned to winning ways with an impressive success in the Go Racing In Kildare Waterford Testimonial Stakes at the Curragh. Eddie Lynam’s classy four-year-old remains lightly raced and was having her first run since finishing down the field in the Prix Maurice de Gheest at Deauville in August. Dropping markedly in class to Listed level, the 15-8 favourite arrived on the scene full of running under Pat Smullen two out and quickly accounted for An Saighdiur, who had cut out the pace in company with Tylery Wonder. Press Association McCreery said: “She had to do the donkey work at Roscommon, but Leigh was able to sit in today and she did it well. The bit of experience helped her. I don’t know if she will run again this year. She had a mid-season break which helped her, and we’ll have to see if there is anything for her.” Fastnet Mist rewarded favourite-backers in the Irish Field EBF Fillies Maiden. The David Wachman-trained three-year-old was breaking her duck at the sixth attempt as she stayed on well to hold the determined challenge of Diylawa by a neck. Winning rider Wayne Lordan said of the 11-8 winner: “She was entitled to win that. The filly that beat her in Killarney has been Listed-placed twice since. The nine furlongs suited her, but she has the pace for a mile. I’d be very hopeful that she can pick up some black type next year.” She soon put the race to bed when asked, going three lengths clear of stablemate Gathering Power, who ran a good race in second. Lynam said: “It’s great to have a good horse, but even better to have a good owner. They have been very patient, and that’s the first time in a long time that she’s had her ground. There has been no problem, we have just been waiting on the ground. “She ran on very bad ground in France and ran poorly. We never found a reason for it, but that’s the only blip on her CV. “She will go for the Champion Sprint (at Ascot) next Saturday, and is entitled to take her chance.” Devonshire, sporting the famous maroon and white silks of Sheikh Mohammed, came with a strong late run to open her account at the fifth time of asking in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden. The Fast Company youngster was produced from off the pace to challenge deep inside the final furlong. Private Paradise and Corail were involved in a battle for the lead, but neither had an answer to Leigh Roche on the Willie McCreery-trained filly, who pulled half a length clear of Corail. Often, a half-sister to Giant’s Causeway, made a pleasing debut just behind the placed horses, but favourite New Alliance sadly broke down. last_img read more

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National Lottery launches £45m Community Fund network

first_img National Lottery Community Fund issues £14m in Climate Action grants August 24, 2020 The National Lottery has pledged to provide a further £45 million in funding for the UK’s ‘most vulnerable communities’ to help them recover from COVID-19 impacts.Through its ‘Community Fund’, the National Lottery has established a new network which will help it distribute central funds to five partners supporting organisations that work within communities that have been disproportionately impacted by pandemic circumstances. The network will be led by the ‘COVID-19 Social Enterprise Support Fund Partnership’, which will tasked with distributing  £20 million to social enterprises best-placed to support local, vulnerable communities in response to the COVID-19 crisis.Supporting charities that will receive £5 million include refugee support charity the Barrow Cadbury Trust, homelessness support organisation Homeless Link.The Community Fund’s new network will be further supported by social enterprise support foundations Access to Justice and UnLtd.The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK, has given out more than £200 million since the start of lockdown to help communities cope with unprecedented impacts. Dawn Austwick, Chief Executive of The National Lottery Community Fund, said: “These partnerships will extend the reach of National Lottery funding at a time when communities need it most. They are each experts in their field, which is why we’re delighted to be working alongside them.“Their local knowledge, dedication and network of contacts will be critical in supporting the distribution of much-needed funding at a critical time for communities. We’re grateful to them for working with us so closely and of course to National Lottery players for making this emergency response possible.” Camelot aims for ‘Big September’ supporting a high street recovery August 26, 2020 Share Share UKGC launches fourth National Lottery licence competition August 28, 2020 StumbleUpon Related Articles Submitlast_img read more

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NBA players show support for Trail Blazers’ Jusuf Nurkic following gruesome leg injury

first_imgThe Trail Blazers ultimately won a double-overtime thriller Monday night at the Moda Center, but they lost one of their most important players to a devastating injury.Portland center Jusuf Nurkic collapsed to the floor during the second overtime period against the Nets with what appeared to be a significant leg injury. Trail Blazers fans chanted Nurkic’s name as he was taken off the floor on a stretcher. (UPDATE: The Trail Blazers announced Nurkic suffered compound fractures to his left tibia and fibula. There is currently no timetable for his return.)Nurkic left the game with 32 points, 16 rebounds and five assists, and the Trail Blazers defeated the Nets by a final score of 148-144. The win secured a playoff berth for Portland, but the Blazers were understandably focused on Nurkic’s status after the game.Terry Stotts says Nurkic is at a local area hospital and doesn’t have much to say from there. Calls it “devastating” and described the locker room at “quiet.” Blazers clinched a playoff spot tonight by the way.— Royce Young (@royceyoung) March 26, 2019Players around the league quickly posted messages of support for Nurkic on Twitter, including fellow Blazers big man Enes Kanter.Prayers up for my brother @bosnianbeast27 🙏😔 pic.twitter.com/Xa6XtUIr0X— Enes Kanter (@Enes_Kanter) March 26, 2019Prayers to go out to @bosnianbeast27!!!! You hate to see injuries like that.. Health is bigger then basketball.. I know hell make a speedy recovery and come back better! 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽— Jared Dudley (@JaredDudley619) March 26, 2019🙏🏾 https://t.co/0lwJ46GS9l— Spencer Dinwiddie (@SDinwiddie_25) March 26, 2019get well soon big fella @bosnianbeast27— Blake Griffin (@blakegriffin23) March 26, 2019Prayers up for @bosnianbeast27 🙏🏽— Karl-Anthony Towns (@KarlTowns) March 26, 2019Nurkic🙏🏿— DeMarcus Cousins (@boogiecousins) March 26, 2019Damn… hate to see this. Get well soon big guy. #nurkic— Rudy Gobert (@rudygobert27) March 26, 2019Prayers up for Nurkic!!! 🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) March 26, 2019Man!! Prayers to Nurkic…🙏🏾— DeMar DeRozan (@DeMar_DeRozan) March 26, 2019Nurkic 🙏🏽— Bradley Beal (@RealDealBeal23) March 26, 2019Hate this part of the game. Prayers up for Nurkic!— DWade (@DwyaneWade) March 26, 2019🙏🙏 nurkic!!— Luka Doncic (@luka7doncic) March 26, 2019Sending Prayers Nurkić…🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽— Trae Young (@TheTraeYoung) March 26, 2019Damn man! Many Prayers up for Nurkic! 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽— Danny Green (@DGreen_14) March 26, 2019Prayers for Nurkic 🙏🏾🙏🏾— Buddy Love !!!! (@buddyhield) March 26, 2019last_img read more

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