BOAVENTURA DE SOUSA SANTOS – More than 100 years after World War I, Europe’s leaders are sleepwalking toward a new all-out war. In 1914, the European governments believed that the war would last three weeks; it lasted four years and resulted in more than 20 million deaths. The same nonchalance is visible with the war in Ukraine.
PRABIR PURKAYASTHA – The possibility of theÂ Joint Comprehensive Plan of ActionÂ (JCPOA)â€”or the Iran nuclear dealâ€”being revived, though difficult,Â seems to have brightened in February 2022. The U.S. may now also believe that the potential loss of Russian natural gas and oil due to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war needs to be offset by Iran returning to the global oil market.
ERIN NIEMELA – Israeli, Palestinian and American citizens, between Israelis and Palestinians, we donâ€™t need a â€œhumanitarian pause.â€ We need actual humanitarians â€“ everyday citizens who work together, rise up and shout â€œEnough!â€ to the gunrunning, bloodshed, enmification and apathy. We can end the violence for good and build peace forever â€“ but we have to work together to control those fat, grey leathery legs of war.
DAVID SWANSON – Evidence of “weapons of mass destruction” is “no slam dunk,” U.S. officials are saying this time around, reversing the claim made about Iraq by then-CIA director George Tenet. Opposition to a U.S.-led attack on Syria is growing rapidly in Europe and the United States, drawing its strength from public awareness that the case made for attacking Iraq had holes in it.
WINSLOW MYERS – Albert Einstein, the full measure of whose prophetic stature still has not been taken, wrote in a telegram to President Roosevelt in 1946: â€œThe unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking, and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.â€
DAVID SWANSON – Three years later a Soviet Lieutenant Colonel acted out the same scene, with the computer glitch on his side this time. Then in 1984 another U.S. computer glitch led to the quick decision to park an armored car on top of a missile silo to prevent the start of the apocalypse. And again in 1995, the Soviet Union almost responded to a U.S. nuclear attack that proved to be a real missile, but one with a weather satellite rather than a nuke. One Pentagon report documents 563 nuclear mistakes, malfunctions, and false alarms over the years â€” so far.
EDITOR’S NOTE – This article adds to the peace movementâ€™s usual analysis, which views control of oil supplies as the driving force behind U.S. policy toward Iran, the notion that nuclear nonproliferation might actually be the prime objective. Whether or not you believe that nonproliferation is the most important aspect, it is reasonable to believe that it does play an important role, as author Jonathan Schell maintains.
WINSLOW MYERS – The biggest challenges we face all have their root cause in an artificial separationâ€”between nations, races, religions, classes, between political parties, between humans and the living ecosystem upon which we depend for lifeâ€”even between our heads and hearts. Such apparent separations represent a kind of global neurosis for which one antidote is what Buddhist philosopher Thich Nhat Hanh calls â€œinterbeingâ€â€”the recognition of our deep interdependence.
IAN HRRIS – When Alice went down the rabbit hole in Lewis Carolâ€™s novel, Alice and Wonderland, she experienced all kinds of unpleasant surprises. What kind of surprises will we Americans face if our government bombs Iran?
GLOBAL NETWORK – In one of the most blacked-out stories in America right now, the US military is preparing to send thousands of US troops, along with US Naval anti-missile ships and accompanying support personnel, to Israel. It took forever to find a second source for confirmation of this story and both relatively mainstream media outlets are in Israel.
ROBERT PARRY – With the typical backdrop of alarmist propaganda in place, the stage is now set for a new war, this time with Iran. The slightest miscalculation (or provocation) by the United States, Israel or Iran could touch off a violent scenario that will have devastating consequences.
URI AVNERY – The Palestinians are planning something thoroughly obnoxious: they intend to apply to the UN for statehood. Why obnoxious? Any Israeli spokesman (not to mention spokeswoman) will tell you readily: because it is a â€œunilateralâ€ move. How dare they proclaim a state unilaterally? How dare they do so without the consent of the other party to the conflict – us?
KATHY KELLY – Last week, newly-arrived in Athens as part of the U.S. Boat to Gaza project, our team of activists gathered for nonviolence training. We are here to sail to Gaza, in defiance of an Israeli naval blockade, in our ship, “The Audacity of Hope.”
WINSLOW MYERS – Our euphoric national mood in the wake of the assassination of Osama bin Laden may make for a reluctance to look once again, or perhaps for the first time, at his demands. There has been almost nothing in the mainstream press that examines his motivations for terrorism.
URI AVNERY – We are in the middle of a geological event. An earthquake of epoch-making dimensions is changing the landscape of our region. Mountains turn into valleys, islands emerge from the sea, volcanoes cover the land with lava.
People are afraid of change. When it happens, they tend to deny, ignore, pretend that nothing really important is happening.
PAM RASMUSSEN BAILEY – I am living right now in northern Gaza. Israeli F-16s struck early this morning (1 a.m. Feb. 9). These were the closest I have ever been and the blasts were so loud and close I felt them in my bones. The child who was killed lived just a couple of streets over. The revolt in Egypt is crucial, but the world must not forget Gaza.
ALON BEN-MEIR – Despite efforts to internationally isolate Syria, especially during the Bush era, Syria has reasserted itself as a central player in the Middle East. Following the assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in 2005, the United States withdrew its ambassador to Beirut, intensified sanctions against Damascus and sought to deepen Syria’s isolation from the international community. The recent array of high-level visitors to Damascus-including United States officials-demonstrates that President Bashar al-Assad has weathered the storm of isolation and has emerged as an essential actor in resolving regional disputes, including the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel should now respond favorably to Damascus’ call for renewed peace talks, and in so doing utilize Syria’s influence to advance peace, rather than thwart it.
JACK KIRKWOOD — American leaders and commentators often refer to Israel as our ally. Yet despite six decades of relationship, this term gained wide usage only after President Bush declared alliance with Israel against the terrorists after 9/11/01. American forces have never joined Israel in any military campaign.
WINSLOW MYERS — Two strategic goals of the U.S. are an apparent desire to control Middle East oil and the expressed commitment to help keep Israel safe. This requires the U.S. to refuse the laudable vision of the Middle East as a nuclear weapons-free zone, which would demand that Israel dismantle its nuclear arsenal. Instead, news reports indicate that Israel may be gearing up for a pre-emptive attack on Iranâ€™s nuclear facilities.
IPPNW — The following is a joint statement from the Palestinian and Israeli affiliates of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) on the recent violence at sea. This statement is the product of unique and powerful collaboration, with physicians transcending political and ideological divisions to speak out with a common voice for peace and humanity.
NORMAN SOLOMON — When Israel attacked the Gaza aid flotilla, Congresswoman Jane Harman was engaged in a parallel assault. Israelâ€™s government relied on the efficacy of violence; Harmanâ€™s campaign was counting on the power of paid media. In both cases, the targets were advocates of human rights for Palestinian people.
DAVID HARTSOUGH: When people think of Palestine and Israel, they often picture Palestinians as suicide bombers and terrorists while the Israeli military are seen as bombing whole neighborhoods in Palestine. The violence and counter-violence and endless war has created a hopelessness about any peaceful future for the Holy Land.
VALERIE SATUREN: With the rising power of Hamas and a rightward shift in Israeli politics, a peace deal between Israelis and Palestinians appears farther out of reach than it has in decades. Meanwhile, the window of opportunity is closing on a two-state solution to the conflict.
COMING TO EUGENE OREGON: J Street, the political arm of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement, is setting up shop in Eugene. Its official opening will be celebrated Thursday, February 4th at 7 p.m. at Temple Beth Israel, 1175 E. 29th Ave.
NANCY HEDRICK: Recent activism and awareness-building events around the Israel-Palestine issue and the ongoing siege in Gaza are in contrast with an unfortunate vote in Congress to support belligerent actions by Israel once again.
PETER BERGEL: On November 9, a delegation organized by Oregon PeaceWorks met with Oregonâ€™s 5th District congressional representative Kurt Schrader. On the agenda were the wars in the Middle East, global warming and health care. The meeting included representatives from OPW, Veterans for Peace, 1000 Friends of Oregon, Fellowship of Reconciliation and Physicians for Social Responsibility.
PETER MILLER: I don’t subscribe to the notion that “Zionism doesn’t announce itself. It’s a stealth war, on our minds.” I don’t subscribe to conspiracy theory. The opponents of Palestinian rights are well established and out in the open. I don’t want to become like AIPAC [American Israel Public Affairs Committee] and folks on the right who demonize “Islamo-fascists” and look for closet Muslims and anti-Semitism to explain people’s opposition to Israel’s policies. I also don’t want to take the “either you’re with us or you’re against us” approach of the last 8 years. I find that many people respond positively when presented with the human rights argument and information about Israel’s behavior. I want to expose as many people as possible to this discussion without introducing conspiratorial thinking that is a turn off for most people.
MARIAH LEUNG: Regarding the Israel/Palestine conflict, we often hear the well-worn statement: “We can’t, and shouldn’t, dictate the terms of peace we don’t live there.” I challenge this assumption.