Saturday, September 11, 2010

No Iraq news?

I'm going through the e-mails while I work on two entries. In one I've just done a transcription of a news report (TV), in the other an excerpt of a radio broadcast. I'm flipping screens for articles and to check the e-mails and I come across an e-mail to the public account from a man with the initials of "BM." BM comes across jubilant in his e-mail as he's convinced that there is no news from Iraq and that the war is over

The war's not over. There is plenty of news from Iraq. While it is true that US outlets are continuing to walk away from Iraq and while it's true that today has seen no major daily publish an article on Iraq, there's plenty of news elsewhere. We're resourceful, we didn't have any problems continuing to cover Iraq when so many of the US news 'soldiers' marched on out of Iraq in January 2009. We won't have a problem now.

E-mails fearful (not gloating) that Iraq will fall off the radar come in regularly from visitors and community members. Again, they're afraid Iraq will vanish completely, they're not gloating that it's going ot happen like BM did. But we'll continue on and it won't be a problem, it hasn't thus far.

And if you're afraid of Iraq dropping off the radar, one thing you can do is support events in your area that continue to explain the Iraq War and the Afghanistan War haven't ended. One example would be to check out former State Dept official and retired Lt Col Ann Wright's upcoming tour if she's in your area. From Military Families Speak Out:

Colonel Ann Wright (Ret.) is one of the highest ranking officers and diplomats to have resigned from government service in protest of the Iraq war.

The Voices of Conscience Upstate NY Tour is sponsored by Military Families Speak Out; Iraq Veterans Against the War, Veterans For Peace and other groups in each community.

For more information, please contact Marilyn Lambert-Fisher,, (585) 749-7121

Colonel Ann Wright (Ret.)
Voices of Conscience Tour Upstate NY
September 2010

Monday, September 20
7:00 PM First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany
405 Washington, Ave., Albany, NY
"The struggle for Peace from Afghanistan to Gaza"

Wednesday, September 22
7:00 PM First Unitarian Society of Ithaca 306 North Aurora Street, Ithaca, NY
"Warrior for Peace and Justice at Home, in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Gaza"

Thursday, September 23
12:00 PM Interview (live) with Bob Smith on WXXI 1370 AM Connection
Rochester, NY

2:00 PM Interfaith Center, 11 Franklin Street (adjacent to the SUNY Geneseo campus), Geneseo, NY
"What are we doing in Iraq and Afghanistan? How does it affect Iraqi, Afghan, and U.S. women?"

7:00 PM Campus Center Bamboo Room, Rochester Institute of Technology, 1 Lomb Memorial Drive, Rochester, NY
"Gaza Flotilla Survivor Tells Her Story"

Friday, September 24
12:30-1:20 PM Medaille Hall, Nazareth College, 4245 East Ave., Rochester, NY
"Costs of War"

7:00 PM First Unitarian Church, 220 Winton Rd. S., Rochester, NY
"Afghanistan: The Need to Dissent"

Saturday, September 25
Syracuse Peace Council Birthday Dinner
St. Lucy's Auditorium, 425 Gifford Street, Syracuse, NY -across from the Church
6:00 PM - doors open
6:30 PM - Dinner is served (featuring vegetarian cuisine and local foods, see for cost)
7:30 PM - Program featuring Ann Wright, "Rejecting the War Machine: From Afghanistan to Activist"

Sunday, September 26
2:00 PM ArtRage Gallery, 505 Hawley Avenue, Syracuse, NY
Book signing and talk at Robert Shetterly's "Americans Who Tell the Truth" Exhibit

The talks are free and open to the public. Donations will be gratefully accepted.

Each talk will be followed by a book sale and signing: Dissent: Voices of Conscience, Government Insiders Speak Out Against the War in Iraq.
Colonel Ann Wright (Ret.)

Ann Wright grew up in Bentonville, Arkansas, and attended the University of Arkansas, where she received a master's and a law degree. She also has a master's degree in national security affairs from the U.S. Naval War College. After college, she spent thirteen years in the U.S. Army and sixteen additional years in the Army Reserves, retiring as a Colonel. She is airborne-qualified.

In 1987, Col. Wright joined the Foreign Service and served as U.S. Deputy Ambassador in Sierra Leone, Micronesia, Afghanistan, and Mongolia. She received the State Department's Award for Heroism for her actions during the evacuation of 2,500 people from the civil war in Sierra Leone, the largest evacuation since Saigon. She was on the first State Department team to go to Afghanistan and helped reopen the Embassy there in December 2001. Her other overseas assignments include Somalia, Kyrgyzstan, Grenada, Micronesia, and Nicaragua. On March 19, 2003, the eve of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Ann Wright cabled a letter of resignation to Secretary of State Colin Powell, stating that without the authorization of the UN Security Council, the invasion and occupation of a Muslim, Arab, oil-rich country would be a disaster. Since then, she has been writing and speaking out for peace. She fasted for a month, picketed at Guantánamo, served as a juror in impeachment hearings, traveled to Iran as a citizen diplomat, and has been arrested numerous times for peaceful, nonviolent protest of Bush's policies, particularly the war on Iraq. In the last year, she has been on delegations to Iran and Gaza. She lives in Honolulu.

Here is a link to her book websites that have materials (photos and bio)

The e-mail address for this site is