Category: Pacifism

World Peace NOW

Cape Town, once the home of the International Anti-Apartheid, Peace Movement has increasingly become commercial and conservative. Whatever happened to the peace pole in the city? Erected to mark peace during the eighties it appears to have been taken down during successive DA administrations.

It appears the Peace Pole was moved to Robben Island. Medialternatives would appreciate if readers could send us photo’s to confirm that it is still up and working. Has Peace run out of steam? Whatever happend to the peace movement? As South African’s mourn the loss of Helen Suzman, anti-apartheid stalwart, I call upon peace-loving citizens everywhere to remember peace the peace movement, restore the peace pole and to pray for World Peace Now. Reciting mantra World Peace Now, or May Peace Prevail on Earth has always proven effective in times of trouble.

Lets create a more peaceful World by remembering Helen Suzman’s peace legacy and by assisting peace ambassador Yoko Ono Lennon’s worldwide mission to erect IMAGINE PEACE poles. Or How about a united musician’s aid to the Middle East and Africa? Forget about the politicians, music can win the day and help us all to remember PEACE!

If we don’t do it, who will? If not now, then when?

Peaceful 2009

David Robert Lewis
World Peace Now

Peace Poles http://www.peacepoles.com/

Peace Poles: http://www.worldpeace.org/peacepoles.html

Imagine Peace: http://www.imaginepeace.com/

IRAQ: Hundreds of U.S. Soldiers Emerge as Conscientious Objectors; link to SA war resistance campaign

NEW YORK, Apr 15 (IPS) – Although only a handful of them have gone public, at least several hundred U.S. soldiers have applied for conscientious objector (CO) status since January, says a rights group.

The Center on Conscience and War (CCW), which advises military personnel on CO discharges, reports that since the start of 2003 – when many soldiers realised they might have to fight in the Iraq war – there has been a massive increase in the number of enlisted soldiers who have applied for CO status.

SEE REPORT BY Gabriel Packard from Interpress Service Agency

In 1987 following the lead taken by Dr Ivan Toms, David Bruce, Kevin Wilkinson, a group of 15 South African conscientious objectors refused to do military service in the Apartheid war machine. After the End Conscription Campaign was banned in 1988, hundreds of white South African war resistors refused the call-up, and conscription into the War in Angola and Civil War raging in South Africa’s Black Townships

HISTORY OF THE END CONSCRIPTION CAMPAIGN

WIKIPEDIA VERSION http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/End_Conscription_Campaign

Refusing to bear arms: a world survey of conscription and conscientious objection to military service

IRAQ: British Doctor, refuses military service, follows in footsteps of South Africa’s own Ivan Toms

On March 3, 1988 – Conscientious objector Dr Ivan Toms was sentenced to 640 days’ imprisonment for refusing to serve in the SADF. Yesterday, a Royal Air Force doctor was jailed for refusing to serve in Iraq. A case of history repeating itself?

SEE Full story by Hasan Suroor, THE HINDU

LONDON: A Royal Air Force doctor has become the first serving British military officer to be dismissed from service and jailed for refusing to serve in Iraq on grounds that he believed it was an illegal war.

But Flt Lt Malcolm Kendall-Smith (37), maintained that he was justified in refusing to participate in a military campaign which, he argued, fell into the “category of criminal acts”.

“I have been convicted and sentenced… .but I still believe I was right to make the stand that I did and refuse to follow orders to deploy to Iraq ‘” orders (that) I believe were illegal,” he said after a court martial sentenced him to eight months for disobeying orders to go to Basra last June.

Dr. Kendall-Smith said there were “many others” in the army who shared his view. Describing the Iraq invasion as a “campaign of imperial military conquest”, he said: “To comply with an order that I believe unlawful places me in breach of domestic and international law, something I am not prepared to do… .I would have had criminal responsibility vicariously if I had gone to Iraq.”

Dr. Kendall-Smith, who served in Iraq twice before, said he decided the war was illegal after reading books and articles on the subject. The court martial ruled that obeying orders was at the “heart” of any disciplined force and an officer could not “pick and choose” which orders to obey.

Dr. Kendall-Smith was praised by anti-war groups and rights campaigners for taking a “courageous stand”.

“Many people believe the war in Iraq was an illegal war and therefore we would consider he was quite within his rights and it was indeed commendable to stand up to what he considered to be an illegal instruction to engage in an illegal war,” said Kate Hudson, chairperson of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. Recently, an SAS soldier Ben Griffin resigned from the army protesting that the Iraq war was illegal.

From THE HINDU — Online edition of India’s National Newspaper