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Trump Unveils ‘Vicious’ Women’s Health Restrictions During ‘Women’s Health Week’ May 21, 2017

Posted by rogerhollander in Health, Revolution, Right Wing, Trump, Uncategorized, Women.
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Roger’s note:

It is going to be a very very very bad 4 or 8 years.  Very bad.  Whether Trump hangs in or is replaced by Pence, the policies of this Republican Panzer Brigade are going to create death and suffering, not only in the United States, but around the globe.  The most immediate pain is being felt by Latin American refugees (many of whom have been in the States for decades), who are being rounded up and deported back to bloody homelands.  Health care for women, the elderly and others most vulnerable is in grave danger.  Environmental protections and public education are going down the drain.   The Southern bigot Attorney General is giving the prison industrial complex a shot in the arm and revving up the so-called War on Drugs, which is actually a war on the poor, Blacks and other minorities.  Workers will earn less as the rich pay fewer taxes and enjoy the fruits of deregulation.  I could go on.

All this while the political classes and the mainstream media obsess on Trumps ties to Russia.

As we will see from the article below. the mean-spirited neo-Fascist Republican Party, in control of all three branches of government, is not satisfied with attacking women’s access to safe abortions in the United States, is casting its deathly net in the four corners of the world.

TrumpGlobalGag-NoAbortionBan-©-Lauryn-Gutierrez-2017.3.8_3539-740x525“President Trump’s expansion of the Global Gag Rule is a major assault on those who serve the world’s poorest and most vulnerable women,” CRR President and CEO Nancy Northup said in a statement.
Lauryn Gutierrez / Rewire

“This policy does not protect life. It jeopardizes the lives of countless women by withholding critical information and access to the full range of reproductive health care,” said Nancy Northup, CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights.

May 18, 2017,  Christine Grimaldi, http://www.rewire.news

The newly released details of President Trump’s expanded “global gag rule” have lived up to advocates’ dire expectations.

Sec. Rex Tillerson’s U.S. Department of State on Monday approved the “Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance” plan, which prohibits all global health assistance, not just family planning funding, from organizations that provide abortion care abroad with their own funds. Under the new framework, the State Department, USAID, and the U.S. Department of Defense are subject to the restrictions with narrow exceptions for their humanitarian assistance efforts.

The guidelines effectively hamstring $8.8 billion—“nearly 15 times as large as the George W. Bush-era Global Gag Rule,” according to the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR).

“President Trump’s expansion of the Global Gag Rule is a major assault on those who serve the world’s poorest and most vulnerable women,” CRR President and CEO Nancy Northup said in a statement.

“This policy does not protect life. It jeopardizes the lives of countless women by withholding critical information and access to the full range of reproductive health care.”

Serra Sippel, president of the Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE), warned in January that a Trump gag rule has no place in 2017.

“Our worst fears came to light on Monday,” Sippel said in a phone interview.

“This is not based in evidence, it’s not based in global health.”

Historically, the global gag rule is associated with an increase in abortions. Stanford University researchers in 2011 found that abortion rates spiked in 20 sub-Saharan African countries under the George W. Bush version.

Trump initially signed the executive order reinstating and expanding the global gag rule in a photo op that featured only white men. That the administration gave an exclusive on the guidelines to a conservative Christian news site during Women’s Health Week only widened the gulf between words and actions in an administration that pays lip service to so-called women’s rights while actively undermining them.

The timing did not go unnoticed on Capitol Hill.

“The Trump Administration’s new, expanded global gag rule will undermine global health efforts and the reproductive freedom and economic security of women worldwide—and it makes President Trump’s blatantly false statement about concern for women’s health, issued just one day ago, all the more insulting and ridiculous,” Sen. Patty Murray (WA), the top Democrat on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, said in a statement.

The lead sponsors of the Global Health, Empowerment, and Rights (HER) Act in the U.S. House of Representatives called on Congress to pass the permanent repeal of the “vicious, anti-woman policy.”

“President Trump has shown he cannot be trusted to lead in the global fight for women’s human rights and dignity,” Reps. Nita Lowey, Eliot Engel, and Louise Slaughter—Democrats from New York—said in a statement with California Democrat Rep. Barbara Lee.

The full breadth of the consequences is still emerging.

Outlets have reported that the new rule could jeopardize funding for groups working to combat the Zika virus. Trump didn’t even spare George W. Bush’s President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). Bush’s global gag rule had exempted PEPFAR, Slate’s Michelle Goldberg reported, “because it was widely understood that the program couldn’t meet its prevention and treatment targets otherwise … although applying the global gag rule to PEPFAR’s programs ill affects millions of men as well.”

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest LGBTQ civil rights organization, slammed “another reckless move by the Trump Administration designed to cynically please his extremist base without regard for consequences.”

“This egregious expansion puts millions more lives at risk, including those living with HIV and AIDS,” HRC Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs JoDee Winterhof said in a statement. “Withholding U.S. aid as a tool to limit anyone’s access to health is simply un-American and stands in direct opposition to our country’s role as a global leader for democracy and human rights.”

Sippel urged people to contact their lawmakers in support of the HER Act or comparable measures.

“We have data and evidence today that we did not have in 2001, the last time this came into place,” Sippel said. “I think we can get members of Congress to move on this if they’re presented with the evidence.”

Tell Congress: Repeal the blank check for perpetual war June 4, 2013

Posted by rogerhollander in 9/11, George W. Bush, War on Terror.
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The email below is from Congresswoman Barbara Lee, a fearless progressive with an unparallelled record of doing what is right under the toughest of circumstances. She was the ONLY member of Congress to vote against giving George W. Bush a blank check for war in the wake of 9/11. She started a petition on org.credoaction.com, where activists can launch their own campaigns for progressive change. We strongly urge you to sign Representative Lee’s petition to repeal the overly broad resolution Congress passed in 2001 that gave President George Bush a blank check to wage war anywhere at any time, and that is still in effect today
Dear roger,

I started my own campaign on CREDO’s new site that allows activists to start their own petitions.

My petition, which is to Congress, asks the following:

Support HR 198 – Repeal of the Authorization for Use of Military Force – legislation that will reexamine and ultimately repeal the flawed blank check authorization to the president to wage war, anywhere at any time.

Now is the time for the U.S. Congress to repeal the overly broad 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force.

On September 14, 2001, I was the sole member of either house of Congress to vote against the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force. That misguided resolution is a blank check for war. It has been used to justify activities, such as warrantless surveillance, indefinite detention and the lethal use of drones, that fly in the face of our constitutional values. I am convinced that military engagement with no end in sight actually undermines our long-term national security.

This is not who we Americans think we are or who we want to be. This is why I have introduced legislation – HR 198 – that will reexamine and ultimately repeal the flawed blank-check Congressional authorization for the president to wage war anywhere at any time.

My bill already has more than a dozen congressional co-sponsors. But a public show of support for this effort is critical now as Congress is getting ready to consider whether to continue the blank check for the executive branch to wage endless war. That’s why I’m asking you to sign on as a citizen co-sponsor.

Click here to learn more and add your name to my petition to Congress, to ask them to repeal the blank-check authorization of war by supporting HR 198.

Thank you for your support.

Rep. Barbara Lee

http://act.credoaction.com/go/782?t=6&akid=8062.1644223.Rya1yR

Liberal Democrats Take Aim at Funding for War December 5, 2009

Posted by rogerhollander in Barack Obama, Iraq and Afghanistan, War.
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Published on Friday, December 4, 2009 by The San Francisco Chronicleby Joe Garofoli

Liberal Democrats, led by heavy-hitting members of Congress from California, are taking on President Obama for the first time, aiming to block funding for his plans to send 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan.At the same time, voters who supported Obama’s candidacy last year are expressing their disappointment online and in street protests against his plan to increase American forces in the war-ravaged nation to nearly 100,000.

[Rep. Barbara Lee of Oakland has sponsored a bill to cut off war funding. (Photo: Alex Wong / Getty Images) ]Rep. Barbara Lee of Oakland has sponsored a bill to cut off war funding. (Photo: Alex Wong / Getty Images)

“This is not the hope you voted for,” read a sign at an anti-war protest in San Francisco this week. 

Congressional leaders predict that Obama will have to ask Congress for supplemental war funding in the next six months to pay for his plan, which his administration estimated would cost $30 billion. Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa., who chairs the subcommittee that oversees the Pentagon budget, predicts it could top $40 billion.

Bay Area positions

That offers an opportunity for opponents, including Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, who has sponsored a bill that would cut off funding for the war, to leverage Congress’ power to challenge the war.

A week after saying there wasn’t Democratic support for an escalation, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – typically the president’s biggest backer on Capitol Hill – continued Thursday to offer neutral statements on Obama’s plan except for saying she opposes a proposed war surtax to fund it.

Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus’ Afghanistan Task Force, worries about the annual cost of $1 million per soldier on the ground in Afghanistan.

Rep. George Miller, D-Martinez, added: “I expect more casualties, and I don’t see any end to what has been going on unsuccessfully.”

At a Senate Foreign Relations hearing Thursday, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., said “the situation got worse” after she voted to fund Obama’s request to send 21,000 more troops to Afghanistan earlier this year.

“How can we now leap to the conclusion that more troops will mean less violence when the opposite seems to have occurred?” Boxer said.

Coalition abandoned

Obama is abandoning the coalition of liberals who helped elect him, analyst Phyllis Bennis of the liberal Institute for Policy Studies said, by relying on support from “the Pentagon, the Republicans and the right wing of the Democratic Party, who together will claim their due as an empowered pro-war coalition.”

That realignment, she said, could imperil Obama’s domestic agenda – including proposals to reform health care, establish climate change policy and fix the economy – by alienating liberals in his party and adding to the burgeoning federal debt.

“It ruins the potential for his domestic agenda,” Bennis said. “How is he supposed to do health care if he spends another $30 billion on Afghanistan? And if he doesn’t do health care or climate change or his jobs program, then he’s got a big problem politically.”

Grassroots dismay

Obama’s grassroots supporters are dismayed by his plan for a troop surge, even though he consistently called Afghanistan the “central front” in the battle against terrorism during his presidential campaign and has called for sending at least two more brigades, roughly 10,000 soldiers, there since 2007.

“I held out hope that he wouldn’t really do it,” Desiree Aubry, a San Francisco City College student, said at a San Francisco anti-war demonstration Wednesday night that drew 200 protesters.

The liberal organizing hub MoveOn.org wants supporters to lobby Congress to set a firm troop pullout date. And on the Web site of Organizing for America, an extension of Obama’s campaign effort, a poster identified as Jono Shaffer wrote: “This decision on Afghanistan is a slap in the face to those of us who supported you as a peace candidate.”

Still, Congress will give Obama the money needed to fund the expanded Afghanistan operation, said Lawrence Korb, a senior fellow at the liberal Center for American Progress who advised Obama on Afghanistan strategy during his presidential campaign. “And I don’t think it is going to have an impact on his domestic agenda.”
They’ll come around

Liberal congressional leaders like Pelosi will eventually support the plan out of political necessity, said Steven Hill, director of the Political Reform Program at the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan think tank.

While Obama’s Afghanistan plan may not be popular with the Democrats’ anti-war wing, it will play better with conservative Blue Dog Democrats. Obama needs those legislators to retain their seats next year to maintain a strong majority in the House, Hill said.

© 2009 The San Francisco Chronicle

Obama’s Military Is Spying on US Peace Groups July 29, 2009

Posted by rogerhollander in Barack Obama, Peace.
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Published on Wednesday, July 29, 2009 by TruthDig.com by Amy Goodman
Anti-war activists in Olympia, Wash., have exposed Army spying and infiltration of their groups, as well as intelligence gathering by the Air Force, the federal Capitol Police and the Coast Guard.The infiltration appears to be in direct violation of the Posse Comitatus Act preventing U.S. military deployment for domestic law enforcement and may strengthen congressional demands for a full-scale investigation of U.S. intelligence activities, like the Church Committee hearings of the 1970s.

Brendan Maslauskas Dunn asked the city of Olympia for documents or e-mails about communications between the Olympia police and the military relating to anarchists, Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) or the Industrial Workers of the World (Dunn’s union). Dunn received hundreds of documents. One e-mail contained reference to a “John J. Towery II,” who activists discovered was the same person as their fellow activist “John Jacob.”

Dunn told me: “John Jacob was actually a close friend of mine, so this week has been pretty difficult for me. He said he was an anarchist. He was really interested in SDS. He got involved with Port Militarization Resistance (PMR), with Iraq Vets Against the War. He was a kind person. He was a generous person. So it was really just a shock for me.”

“Jacob” told the activists he was a civilian employed at Fort Lewis Army Base and would share information about base activities that could help the PMR organize rallies and protests against public ports being used for troop and Stryker military vehicle deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. Since 2006, PMR activists have occasionally engaged in civil disobedience, blocking access to the port.

Larry Hildes, an attorney representing Washington activists, says the U.S. attorney prosecuting the cases against them, Brian Kipnis, specifically instructed the Army not to hand over any information about its intelligence-gathering activities, despite a court order to do so.

Which is why Dunn’s request to Olympia and the documents he obtained are so important.

The military is supposed to be barred from deploying on U.S. soil, or from spying on citizens. Christopher Pyle, now a professor of politics at Mount Holyoke College, was a military intelligence officer. He recalled: “In the 1960s, Army intelligence had 1,500 plainclothes agents [and some would watch] every demonstration of 20 people or more. They had a giant warehouse in Baltimore full of information on the law-abiding activities of American citizens, mainly protest politics.” Pyle later investigated the spying for two congressional committees: “As a result of those investigations, the entire U.S. Army Intelligence Command was abolished, and all of its files were burned. Then the Senate Intelligence Committee wrote the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 to stop the warrantless surveillance of electronic communications.”

Reps. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., Rush Holt, D-N.J., and others are pushing for a new, comprehensive investigation of all U.S. intelligence activities, of the scale of the Church Committee hearings, which exposed widespread spying on and disruption of legal domestic groups, attempts at assassination of foreign heads of state, and more.

Demands mount for information on and accountability for Vice President Dick Cheney’s alleged secret assassination squad, President George W. Bush’s warrantless wiretapping program, and the CIA’s alleged misleading of Congress. But the spying in Olympia occurred well into the Obama administration (and may continue today). President Barack Obama supports retroactive immunity for telecom companies involved in the wiretapping, and has maintained Bush-era reliance on the state secrets privilege. Lee and Holt should take the information uncovered by Brendan Dunn and the Olympia activists and get the investigations started now.

Denis Moynihan contributed research to this column.

© 2009 Amy Goodman

Amy Goodman is the host of “Democracy Now!,” a daily international TV/radio news hour airing on 700 stations in North America. She was awarded the 2008 Right Livelihood Award, dubbed the “Alternative Nobel” prize, and received the award in the Swedish Parliament in December.

IWD 2009: Gallery of Honor March 8, 2009

Posted by rogerhollander in Women.
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betty-friedan

Betty Friedan: Modern Day Pioneer

aung-san-suu-kyi1

Aung San Suu Kyi: Burmese Resistance Leader

cathy-crowe

Cathy Crowe: Canadian Anti-poverty Activist

fannie_lou_hamer

Fannie Lou Hamer: Civil Rights Leader

henriksen-visite

Anne Korabiak Hollander: Humanitarian (my mother)

73634103AW013_House_Foreign

Barbara Lee: Only Vote in House of Representatives Against Iraq Invasion

luxemburg_rosa

Rosa Luxemburg: Revolutionary Philosopher, Activist and Martyr

rigoberta_menchu

Rigoberta Menchu: Guatemalan Community Organizer

m_makeba

Miriam Makeba: Mama Africa

louise_michel

Louise Michel: Paris Commune Revolutionary Leader

109-cindy-sheehan

Cindy Sheehan: Mother, Tireless Peace Activist

s-truth

Soujourner Truth: Ain”t I a Woman

carmen

Carmen Váscones: Ecuadorian Poet (and Inspiration)

The Silent Winter of Escalation December 9, 2008

Posted by rogerhollander in Iraq and Afghanistan.
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soldiers-2

Soldiers rush for supplies in eastern Afghanistan. (Photo: John Moore / Getty Images)

Sunday morning, before dawn, I read in The New York Times that “the Pentagon is planning to add more than 20,000 troops to Afghanistan” within the next 18 months – “raising American force levels to about 58,000” in that country. Then, I scraped ice off a windshield and drove to the C-SPAN studios, where a picture window showed a serene daybreak over the Capitol dome.

    While I was on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” for a live interview, the program aired some rarely seen footage with the voices of two courageous politicians who challenged the warfare state.

    So, on Sunday morning, viewers across the country saw Barbara Lee speaking on the House floor three days after 9/11 – just before she became the only member of Congress to vote against the president’s green-light resolution to begin the US military attack on Afghanistan.

    “However difficult this vote may be, some of us must urge the use of restraint,” she said. The date was September 14, 2001. Congresswoman Lee continued, “Our country is in a state of mourning. Some of us must say, Let’s step back for a moment, let’s just pause just for a minute, and think through the implications of our actions today so that this does not spiral out of control.”

    And she said, “As we act, let us not become the evil that we deplore.”

    The footage of Barbara Lee was an excerpt from the “War Made Easy” documentary film (based on my book of the same name). As she appeared on a TV monitor, I glanced out the picture window. The glowing blue sky and streaky clouds above the Hill looked postcard-serene.

    But the silence now enveloping the political nonresponse to plans for the Afghanistan war is a message of acquiescence that echoes what happened when the escalation of the Vietnam War gathered momentum.

    During the mid-1960s, the conventional wisdom was what everyone with a modicum of smarts kept saying: Higher US troop levels in Vietnam were absolutely necessary. Today, the conventional wisdom is that higher US troop levels in Afghanistan are absolutely necessary.

    Many people who think otherwise – including, I’d guess, quite a few members of Congress – are keeping their thoughts to themselves, heads down and mouths shut, for roughly the same reasons that so many remained quiet as the deployment numbers rolled upward like an odometer of political mileage on the road to death in Vietnam.

    Right now, the basic ingredients of further Afghan disasters are in place – including, pivotally, a dire lack of wide-ranging debate over Washington’s options. In an atmosphere reminiscent of 1965, when almost all of the esteemed public voices concurred with the decision by newly elected President Lyndon Johnson to deploy more troops to Vietnam, the tenet that the United States must send additional troops to Afghanistan is axiomatic in US news media, on Capitol Hill and – as far as can be discerned – at the top of the incoming administration.

    But the problem with such a foreign-policy “no brainer” is that the parameters of thinking have already been put in the rough equivalent of a lockbox. Dean Rusk, Robert McNamara and Lyndon Johnson approached Vietnam policy options no more rigidly than Hillary Clinton, Robert Gates and Barack Obama appear poised to pursue Afghanistan policy options.

    I was thinking about this when I left the C-SPAN building in the full light of day. The morning glow made the Capitol look majestic. Yet, it was almost possible to see, streaked across the dome, an invisible new stain of blood and shattered bones.

    Along with the grim patterns, there’s a tradition of brave dissent on Capitol Hill. It’s epitomized by Barbara Lee’s prophetic statement just after 9/11 – and by an earlier kindred spirit, the fierce Vietnam War opponent Sen. Wayne Morse. If you’d like to see historic footage of them, retrieved from the nation’s Orwellian memory hole, watch the “Washington Journal” segment by clicking here.

    On Monday, USA Today reported that the top US commander in Afghanistan “has asked the Pentagon for more than 20,000 soldiers, Marines and airmen” to raise the US troop level in Afghanistan to 55,000 or 60,000. Gen. David McKiernan says that is “needed until we get to this tipping point where the Afghan army and the Afghan police have both the capacity and capability to provide security for their people.” Such a tipping point “is at least three or four more years away,” the general explained. So, “if we put these additional forces in here, it’s going to be for the next few years. It’s not a temporary increase of combat strength.”

    Is Afghanistan the same as Vietnam? Of course, competent geographers would say no. But the United States is the United States – with domestic continuity between two eras of military intervention, spanning five decades, much more significant than we might think.

    Bedrock faith in the Pentagon’s massive capacity for inflicting violence is implicit in the nostrums from anointed foreign-policy experts. The echo chamber is echoing: The Afghanistan war is worth the cost that others will pay.

    Norman Solomon is executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. Information about the documentary film “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death” is posted at www.WarMadeEasyTheMovie.org. To view the C-SPAN “Washington Journal” interview that included excerpts from the film, go to: http://www.cspan.org/Watch/watch.aspx?MediaId=HP-A-13214

by: Norman Solomon, t r u t h o u t | Perspective