Posts Tagged ‘Cynthia McKinney’

Cynthia McKinney: Leaders’ lack of respect for rule of law makes us all victims of 9/11

March 15, 2010

Cynthia McKinney, The Independent/UK, March 15, 2010

The war on terror did not go away with George Bush. When President Barack Obama came to power there was so much hope, but as the US Green Party presidential candidate I did not share it.

I heard candidate Obama’s speeches and knew that he would be a War President. What I did not realise was the extent to which the policies of President Obama would mirror those of his predecessor, including the renewal of the Patriot Act and commission of war crimes. Sadly, President Obama’s Justice Department is now in US courts defending the criminal acts of the Bush administration.

In his State of the Union address to the nation, President Obama defended war, erosion of civil and human rights, creation of the police state, ignoring the US Constitution and the norms of international law, by invoking the tragedy of 11 September, 2001. Tony Blair also leaps to his own criminal defence by invoking 9/11.

All of us in the peace community, who stand for justice and human dignity, have become victims of 9/11. Those of us who expect our national leaders to promote respect for the environment are now victims of 9/11. Survivors of those who are now dead from the prosecution of these wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Yemen, and elsewhere around the world are now victims of 9/11. And the mothers and fathers, siblings and family of the too many dead soldiers are now counted among the victims of 9/11. And sadly, the entire global community that expects national leaders to respect the rule of law and tell them the truth are now victims of 9/11.

Everyone now knows that the Bush administration did not tell the truth about many things, including the Iraq war and 9/11. The leaders of the 9/11 Commission told us that. Why must the world continue to live inside a lie? I remain hopeful that we will learn the truth because more and more people around the world are demanding it.

Cynthia McKinney served in the US Congress for 12 years and was the 2008 Green Party nominee for President of the United States. She now serves as a juror on the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation’s Russell Tribunal on Palestine

www.allthingscynthiamckinney.com; more information on 9/11 at www.reinvestigate911.org

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Haiti 2010: An Unwelcome Katrina Redux

January 20, 2010

By McKinney, Cynthia, ZNet, January 20, 2010
Cynthia McKinney’s ZSpace Page


President Obama’s response to the tragedy in Haiti has been robust in military deployment and puny in what the Haitians need most:  food; first responders and their specialized equipment; doctors and medical facilities and equipment; and engineers, heavy equipment, and heavy movers.  Sadly, President Obama is dispatching Presidents Bush and Clinton, and thousands of Marines and U.S. soldiers.  By contrast, Cuba has over 400 doctors on the ground and is sending in more; Cubans, Argentineans, Icelanders, Nicaraguans, Venezuelans, and many others are already on the ground working–saving lives and treating the injured.  Senegal has offered land to Haitians willing to relocate to Africa.

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Peace activists tell Obama “No you can’t!”

December 21, 2009

By Jamilla El-Shafei, Socialist Worker,  December 18, 2009

WASHINGTON–Antiwar activists assembled in Lafayette Park, across from the White House, on December 12 to protest Barack Obama’s escalation of the war on Afghanistan and his Nobel Peace Prize speech in Oslo about waging a “just war.”

The call for the protest, which was put out by activists from Maine and Washington, demanded an end to the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, a complete withdrawal of U.S. troops, and an end to drone attacks and covert military operations in Pakistan. The End U.S Wars web site states, “If President Obama does not meet these demands, we promise intensified opposition with antiwar candidates prepared to defeat his war policy.”

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Cynthia McKinney to President Obama: Turn Away From War

November 16, 2009

Open Letter From the Peace Movement to President Obama on His Upcoming Decision Regarding the Afghan War

By Cynthia McKinney, Information Clearing House, Nov. 15, 2009

Dear Mr. President:

According to press reports, you intend to decide between November 7 and November 11 whether or not to send tens of thousands of American soldiers to Afghanistan. We are writing in advance of that decision to add our voice to those of Sen. Feingold, many House Democrats, and of a clear majority of Americans in urging you not to escalate this war, but rather to announce an immediate cease-fire followed by a withdrawal of all US troops in the fastest way consistent with the safety of our forces. We urge you to end the policy of using Predator drones to assassinate Pakistani civilians on the territory of their own country, in defiance of all concepts of international law. We also call upon you to cease all covert CIA and Pentagon operations in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran.

No vital American interest is at stake in Afghanistan. Former Marine and State Department official Matthew Hoh is right: the US and NATO forces in Afghanistan have come to be viewed as invaders and occupiers, and the resistance they encounter has nothing to do with international terrorism. This war is futile, and now doomed to failure. There is no military solution to the problems that beset Afghanistan. Afghanistan and the rest of this tragically war-torn region need a Marshall Plan of peaceful economic development, through which some of the 15 million unemployed workers in our own country could find productive jobs. We have no confidence in the advice being given to you by military leaders like Gen. McChrystal, who has been implicated in torture in Iraq.

We supported your candidacy because we viewed you as the best chance for ending the wars of the Bush era. We applauded your rejection of the rhetoric of fear and division that was the stock in trade of Bush and Cheney. We are alarmed by the way that rhetoric has crept into your public pronouncements since your August address in Phoenix. Your decision on Afghanistan will represent the decisive turning point of your presidency. If you turn away from war, you will provide a profile in courage that will solidify your support and open up a new perspective for progressive reforms in our country. You will honor the spirit of John F. Kennedy, who was searching for an exit strategy from the Vietnam war. If you opt for a wider war, the resulting heavy casualties will destroy confidence in your leadership among your own most devoted advocates. Hundreds of billions of dollars will be poured down a rat hole, and will no longer be available for any reform and renovation of American society, which will increasingly fall behind the economic strength of other countries. Your domestic agenda will be halted, in the same way your predecessor Lyndon B. Johnson was crippled by the Vietnam war. Escalation of the Afghan war, in short, would be an act of political suicide for you, and of national suicide for our country.

We are keenly aware of the difficulties and animosities you face, and we have long done everything possible to give your administration the benefit of the doubt, even in the face of repeated disappointments. But we now approach the moment of truth: will you be a great progressive president, or will you prove too weak to turn away from the bankrupt policies institutionalized and entrenched under Bush and Cheney. Therefore, we want you to know our attitude before you decide on the proposed Afghan escalation. If you choose to escalate, we will oppose this policy with all the energy we possess. We will act to mobilize the largest possible anti-war demonstration in Washington DC and other cities before the end of 2009, and continuously thereafter. We will support anti-war candidates of any party in the 2010 elections. If you are still waging the Afghan war in 2011, we will be forced to seriously consider backing an explicitly anti-war primary candidate to challenge you during the Democratic primaries.

We therefore respectfully urge you to act in the spirit of your 2008 campaign – the spirit of hope and change, neither of which can survive the continuation or expansion of the hopeless Afghan war.

Cynthia McKinney, DIGNITY

Nader Was Right: Liberals Are Going Nowhere With Obama

August 11, 2009

Truthdig.com, Aug 10, 2009

By Chris Hedges

The American empire has not altered under Barack Obama. It kills as brutally and indiscriminately in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan as it did under George W. Bush. It steals from the U.S. treasury to enrich the corporate elite as rapaciously. It will not give us universal health care, abolish the Bush secrecy laws, end torture or “extraordinary rendition,” restore habeas corpus or halt the warrantless wiretapping and monitoring of citizens. It will not push through significant environmental reform, regulate Wall Street or end our relationship with private contractors that provide mercenary armies to fight our imperial wars and produce useless and costly weapons systems.

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Israel deports Gaza campaigners

July 7, 2009

BBC News, July 7, 2009

Gaza activists boat, named Spirit of Humanity

The ship left the Cypriot port of Larnaca on Monday

Israel has deported eight pro-Palestinian activists detained at sea last week as they tried to ferry aid to Gaza in defiance of Israel’s blockade.

Nobel peace laureate Mairead Maguire and former US congresswoman Cynthia McKinney was among them.

They complain the Israeli navy seized them illegally in Palestinian waters.

Israel’s navy has blockaded Gaza since the election victory of Hamas militants in 2006. It said the Greek ship ignored orders to stop and was intercepted.

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Letter from an Israeli Jail, by Cynthia McKinney

July 5, 2009

Cynthia McKinney, Free Gaza Team

uruknet.info, Saturday, 04 July 2009 13:47

Original audio message available here:
http://freegaza.org/it/home/56-news/984-a-message-from-cynth
ia-from-a-cell-block-in-israel

This is Cynthia McKinney and I’m speaking from an Israeli prison cellblock in Ramle. [I am one of] the Free Gaza 21, human rights activists currently imprisoned for trying to take medical supplies to Gaza, building supplies – and even crayons for children, I had a suitcase full of crayons for children. While we were on our way to Gaza the Israelis threatened to fire on our boat, but we did not turn around. The Israelis high-jacked and arrested us because we wanted to give crayons to the children in Gaza. We have been detained, and we want the people of the world to see how we have been treated just because we wanted to deliver humanitarian assistance to the people of Gaza.

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Israel Abducts Nobel Laureate, Former U.S. Congresswoman

July 2, 2009
by Jeremy R. Hammond

The 'Spirit of Humanity' sets sail for Gaza (Free Gaza Movement)The ‘Spirit of Humanity’ sets sail for Gaza (Free Gaza Movement)

The Free Gaza Movement announced in a press release on Tuesday that its boat The Spirit of Humanity had been intercepted by the Israeli navy while en route from Cyprus to the Gaza Strip to deliver humanitarian supplies to the Palestinian people.

The people of Gaza have suffered under an Israeli siege and a three-week military assault code-named Operation Cast Lead that began on December 27 last year.

Israel has been heavily criticized by human rights groups for its actions during that campaign, which included indiscriminate bombing of civilian targets and the use of white phosphorus as a weapon, forbidden under international law.

The Israeli navy intercepted the boat, named the Arion but dubbed The Spirit of Humanity by its passengers, boarded it, and then forcibly directed it to Ashdod, Israel.

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Stars, Stripes, War and Shame

August 31, 2008

By MISSY COMLEY BEATTIE | Counterpunch, August 30 / 31, 2008

The Pentagon says “only” five civilians were killed Friday, a week ago, by US aerial bombardment. According to Afghan officials and a United Nations report, 90 Afghan civilians died, 60 of whom were children.

Just days after this carnage, the Democrats, so many dressed in red, white, and blue, opened their convention in Denver. In the wake of the barbarity in Afghanistan and the continued suicide bombings in Iraq, the revelry and flag waving in Colorado seemed inappropriate. Sure, I understand that hope was and is in the air, but I reached for the remote and powered off.

Thursday night, I tuned in to hear a sweet, young voice, pledging allegiance to the flag of the United States of American. “With freedom and justice for all.”

Freedom and justice are concepts we can no longer take for granted. They aren’t guaranteed by stars, stripes, and platitudes. The truth is that George and Dick have sucked the life out of our Constitution, aided by Congressional Republicans and Democrats as well as too many among the electorate who are guilty by reason of fear or complacency.

The events of 9/11 sent masses rushing to either purchase or dust off their Bibles and reference scripture for guidance and to to justify “an eye for an eye.” Never mind that we leveled a country with no link to those who used our commercial airplanes as weapons. The attack on our soil provided the neocons the excuse they needed to implement their plan for domination of Earth’s bounties. Add to this the groupies convinced that George Bush was chosen by God to be president at this particular time of crisis. That Bush himself believed this should have been a red-flag warming that the path he demanded we follow would lead us, not to an Eden of security and prosperity but, to a miasma of endless conflict and contempt from most of the world.

The warmongers forgot the song learned in childhood:

“Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world.”

The lyrics crawl through my consciousness as war rages on and candidates for the highest office in our land spar in their own war of words for the power prize, which is the authority to declare war. To John Bomb Bomb McCain, war is something about which to joke, promote, and accelerate. He reminds us repeatedly of his years as a tortured prisoner of war. Yet he never mentions the targets whose eyes he didn’t see–all those Vietnamese peasants, men, women, and children, whose bodies he melted. For Barack Obama who opposed the invasion of Iraq but, without fail, has voted to fund it, the prudent foreign policy strategy is to send more troops to the “right” hotspot, Afghanistan. Russia must love this.

Monday is the beginning of the Republican version of Denver. When McCain, who seems to have a “thing” for beauty queens, speaks, we’ll probably hear about that trip he’s going to take to the “gates of hell.” Also, he’ll offer the usual “we’re fighting them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here,” and “if we leave too soon, they’ll follow us home,” and that we “must achieve victory.”

But no one is defining victory, so allow me: Victory is pledging allegiance to peace.

Imagine if we had a candidate who said:

So much of the history of our country has been sanitized. The truth is that we have battled unnecessarily, illegally, immorally. We have sent our sons and daughters to die, to return maimed, to sustain traumatic brain injuries and post traumatic stress disorder while destroying the lives of those we call the enemy, the other. We have invaded for resources that we call our “interests” and for superior positioning. Just to show we can. Just to show our might. Not to defend ourselves. I say no more. Not on my watch. As your president, I pledge allegiance to the people. I pledge allegiance to peace.

Actually, we do have aspirants who have said as much. Ralph Nader and Cynthia McKinney certainly are transformational choices. Bob Barr, the Libertarian, gets it, too, when he says that war “should be the last rather than the first resort.” But our corporate media give them little credibility and even less airtime.

So, we wait. Some wave their flags and hope while others feel despair and shame at what continues to be done in our names.

Missy Beattie lives in New York City. She’s written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. An outspoken critic of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq, she’s a member of Gold Star Families for Peace. She completed a novel last year, but since the death of her nephew, Marine Lance Cpl. Chase J. Comley, in Iraq on August 6,’05, she has been writing political articles. She can be reached at: Missybeat@aol.com


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