Will be a full-fledged essay, but this morning on Twitter I wrote it as a poem. you a Boomer or GenX?" the young veteran asked me, and refused to believe at first when I said "a late Boomer." I often say I'm a backwash Boomer, since I learned to read just as the 1960s were … Continue reading My thank-you note to Dr Howard Levy
The day before the Kent State anniversary, I heard NPR talking about that day. And I thought of some people they'd not interviewed: Vietnam veterans also seared by the shootings, and Phil Ochs singing "Who's the Criminal Here?"
In this Week Three of the U.S. coronavirus crisis, books seem more popular than ever -- though as its economic impact hits home, I do find myself wondering if anyone will be buying them in November, or burning them to keep warm. Still, Ain't Marching is in production now, and though its official publication date's … Continue reading Chapter titles: the best outtakes
I really tried to keep this one, perhaps because when I interviewed him in 1996, I didn't realize I was beginning my life's work. He's also someone I've seen repeatedly over the years since, not just when I interviewed him again in San Diego but at Occupy in 2011, and the Manning trial in 2013.But … Continue reading outtake: Capt. Rockwood, who took the Marine Corps Values too seriously.
Those of you who follow me on social media know that The Book is finally headed for bookshelves this fall, as I Ain't Marching Anymore: Dissenters, Deserters and Objectors in America's Wars. And the list of important people who didn't make it into the final draft is impossibly long--which could also be said for most … Continue reading Outtake: the first GI organizer I ever met.
Eight years ago this week, a NYPD riot at New York's Zuccotti Park evicted the last remaining Occupy Wall Street activists. That year had seen an incredible amount of movement-building, with organizing from coast to coast--including by dissenting veterans. Below, a vigil for Iraq vet Scott Olsen at Occupy Oakland. In 2011, Obama's Afghanistan “surge” … Continue reading Outtake: Scott Olsen, who almost died for Occupy
Late to this, but essential reading.
Note: The Washington Post refused to publish the following article to correct their records
“Chelsea Manning’s lawyer says the DOJ ‘bent over backwards’ to accommodate her medical needs.” I never expected to make headlines for the Washington Post, but I ought to have guessed that if I did, it would involve a misrepresentation in service of my frequent adversary, the United States government. As the lawyer referenced in Eugene Scott’s column, allow me to clarify: in his attempt to shed light on the Trump administration’s ban on trans people in the military, Mr. Scott has merely engaged in an exercise in extreme point-missing. After conceding that this administration’s policies on the rights of trans people are as hazy as they are hostile, Mr. Scott tries to find hope for trans soldiers in, of all places, the state’s successful bid to put my transgender client behind bars.
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Here's the current endnotes from the Vietnam chapter -- including interviews with folks who have since died. Wondering if they make a narrative of themselves. Alexa Gagosz, “MIT Professor Noam Chomsky, Vietnam resistors tell their stories.” Suffolk Journal, April 15, 2010. United States v. Seeger, 380 U.S. 163 (1965) Lawrence Baskir and William Strauss, Chance … Continue reading Working back from these notes, could you grok the story?
A piece I’m hoping to include in the summer issue of Democratic Left, whose working theme is “Building a Future Without the Gangsters of Capitalism.”
by Matt Meyer
[This article was originally published on ‘New Clear Vision‘ on February 15th, 2012.]
On the Nature of Violence and Nonviolence
Amidst a bombardment of Black Bloc commentary, questions about the militarized nature of tear-gas toting police, and the ever-frustrating all-too-abstract dialogues about the meanings of nonviolence, violence, strategy, tactics, and principles, comes a simple story (and a complicated book) straight out of Occu-politics. First, though, some defining of terms:
Nonviolence (a term some have called ‘a word seeking to describe something by saying what it is not’) is used in as wide a variety of ways as there are flavors of ice cream. For some, it is strategic and revolutionary, for others principled and philosophical; for some it is a way of life and for others a mere tactic. For most practitioners, it is an often-tantalizing combination of the above. Our story will…
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(Photo, via Library of Congress; Some is of the "newsies," the children peddling newspapers around city streets, when people still paid some money for words on paper.) Maybe both. As I write this I'm listening to Eyes Left, which explicitly IDs as a "Socialist Military Podcast." Last night, I was catching up with Lions Led by … Continue reading Are lefty milpods the next whistleblowers, or “fortresses on a hill?”