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Voices for Creative Nonviolence has deep, long-standing roots in active nonviolent resistance to U.S. war-making. Begun in the summer of 2005, Voices draws upon the experiences of those who challenged the brutal economic sanctions imposed by the U.S. and U.N. against the Iraqi people between 1990 and 2003. More about Voices

recent additions at a glance

Drones and Discrimination: Kick the HabitKathy Kelly sees opportunity on being sentenced to 3 months in prison
Missouri Judge Convicts and Sentences Two Peace Activists for Protesting Drone Warfareat Whiteman Air Force Base
Spending Time with People Trapped and Impoverished by Endless War Abroad and at HomeKathy Kelly Interviewed on NPR Worldview
Drones on Trialat Federal Court in Jefferson City Dec. 10
Hancock Drone Resister Jack Gilroy RELEASEDfrom Jamesville Correctional Facility
Climate Change ChallengesSupport the Environment or the U.S. Military?

Traveling Light

December 6, 2007

Traveling with as light a load as possible is something I long for during long stretches away from home. I routinely discard paperwork and periodicals, “recycle” gifts and give away clothing. But, here in Amman, Jordan, when a ten year-old Iraqi girl named Nauras gave me a camera, I quickly put it in the envelope where I keep my money, confident it would survive my next purge.

The camera consists of two pieces of drawing paper, cleverly folded so that the parts slide past each other, opening up a tiny square “shutter.” I think of Nauras peering through the shutter and pretending to snap my picture, then gleefully posing for imaginary snapshots as I take my turn as photographer. I remember her fetching her only other toy, a bedraggled baby doll with long white hair and eyes of aqua blue, and placing it in my arms.

Cathy Breen: "It's always too soon to go home."

Amman, Jordan
November 25, 2007

Recent media reports depict large numbers of Iraqis returning to their country. “Thousands of Iraqis living in Syria have headed back home in the past weeks.” (Jordan Times, Feb. 23,2007) Some reports attribute this to improved security in Iraq. While the death rate and incidence of suicide bombs has decreased in recent weeks and months—most welcomed news—it seems that necessity is what is driving Iraqis home. As has long been the case in Jordan, visas for Iraqis in Syria are not being renewed and their money has run out. Returning Iraqis have also said they would prefer to die with dignity in their own country, rather than face the contempt and humiliation they feel in Jordan and Syria.

Seasons of Discontent: A Presidential Occupation Project: December 29, 2007 to January 3, 2008

Des Moines, Iowa

Background Paper on Candidates
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Ring in the New Year with a New Commitment to nonviolent direct action to end the Iraq war and to prevent an extension of this war to Iran and other countries.

SODaPOP is the campaign of nonviolent civil resistance / civil disobedience which includes office occupations of presidential candidates who not commit to withdrawing all U.S. troops from Iraq within 100 days of assuming office and who do not commit to publicly opposing the use of military force against Iran and other countries. (see complete set of demands)

Cathy Breen: Political Cartoonist, Emad Hajjaj

Amman, Jordan
November 21, 2007

Kathy Kelly will be joining me for the last stretch of my stay in Jordan, and I have been puttering around trying to ready the apartment for her coming. This morning, in an attempt to straighten up the piles of papers and files which have accumulated over the last three months, I’ve been going through newspaper clippings. I am also awaiting a telephone call today to give an interview, so the task serves as a helpful review of events deemed newsworthy here in the Middle East. What are the recurring themes and opinions coming out in their news? What messages and words from the region would we do well to heed in the U.S.?

Cathy Breen: "I must tell you of the beautiful things that fill my days here"

Amman, Jordan
November 19, 2008

Iraqis teach me many things. One is to laugh in spite of myself. I chuckled the other day as I sent a newspaper clipping off to my dear friend Cynthia in Vernon, N.Y. I knew she would enjoy the story “Lonely in Baghdad? Chat up a Bird.” The article speaks of dozens of Baghdadis ignoring the threat to their lives as they flock on Fridays to the animal market Al Ghari. “I don’t go out of my home because of the danger” says one customer. “I decided to buy a parrot who can entertain me.” The son of a prominent seller of exotic animals at the market said “Our situation at the time of Saddam was much better.” He explained that during the former regime pet lovers from Iran and Russia used to regularly visit Al Ghari. “Today we have local customers who like to have birds in their homes, as these people do not step out. But times have changed” he says. As he points a finger to a group of animals, suddenly an African Grey parrot—a new arrival—shouts out: “Down with Bush!” (The Jordan Times, Nov. 15, 2007)

Slip Sliding Away: House Votes on Iraq War Funding Today, November 14

November 14, 2007

The Democratic Party’s Barbershop Quartet strikes again-caving in marvelous manner on the Iraq war. “You know the nearer your destination, the more you slip sliding away,” sang Simon and Garfunkel.

If ending the Iraq war is our destination, then Pelosi, Obey, Murtha and the Democrats are slip sliding us all further away.

Today, November 14, the House will vote on H.R. 4156-the newest Iraq - Afghanistan war supplemental spending bill. In the finest tradition of democracy, the text of the bill was not publicly available until last night.

An afternoon at Giuliani’s Campaign Headquarters and a night in the Polk County Jail

by Joy First
November 13, 2007

The Planning

I drove from my home in Madison to Des Moines Iowa on Wednesday November 7, 2007 to participate in the kickoff of Seasons of Discontent: a Presidential Occupation Project (SODaPOP), organized by Voices for Creative Nonviolence and the Catholic Worker Community in Des Moines. SODaPOP is a campaign to use civil resistance, occupying the campaign headquarters of presidential candidates who will not commit to concrete plans to bring an immediate end to the war and occupation of Iraq. SODaPOP started in Iowa because it is the first state to begin the process of determining who our presidential candidates will be during the January caucuses. All the candidates currently have active campaigns in Iowa, and the media is closely watching what is happening.

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