Good evening. Let's go to two things from Democracy Now!
More Than 1,500 Antiwar Vigils Held Across the US
Last night, people across the United States participated in more than 1,500 candlelight vigils calling for an end to the occupation of Iraq. The vigils were called by Cindy Sheehan who is continuing her antiwar protest outside of President Bush's property near Crawford, Texas. Here is the mother of a soldier who was wounded in Iraq, speaking at a vigil in Washington DC.
Gilda, mother of soldier wounded in Iraq:"What is unforgivable is that you betrayed our idealistic American sons and daughters who trustingly placed their lives in your hands. we, their mothers, will not let you move on with your life."
One mother of a soldier who served in Iraq, speaking in Washington DC. Meanwhile, in Crawford Cindy Sheehan has been joined by a growing number of people at her protest and has now begun setting up camp on the property of one of President Bush's neighbors who offered his land to Sheehan. Among the people joining her are several parents of soldiers killed in Iraq, as well as Minnesota State Senator Becky Lourey, whose son died in Iraq, as well as FBI whistleblower Colleen Rowley--who is running for Congress in Minnesota. Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern is also in Crawford and many more people are expected to pour in for a rally planned for Thursday evening.
Cindy Sheehan:"Our spirits are always good here at Camp Casey 'cause we feel the support of everybody around the world."
So do you think it's having an effect? I do. I think people are paying attention and that's what I hear on campus. People call her brave and say that they're tired of no one talking about the war.
Here's the second thing from Democracy Now!
Court Hears Details of Killing of Afghan Prisoner by US Soldier
Now to the ongoing prisoner abuse scandal. An Afghan detainee who died in US military custody in 2002 was injured so severely that his leg muscles were split apart. This according to an Air Force medical examiner's testimony this week in the trial of a soldier accused in the beating. The examiner who performed the autopsy on the prisoner said his muscles were "crumbling and falling apart." She testified that the injuries could have been caused by repeated knee strikes or by a fist. Army Private Willie Brand is accused of abusing the two prisoners in Afghanistan in 2002. Both later died.
C.I. had a great thing last night and I was thinking about it when I heard the second headline on Democracy Now! The thing was called "Scattered Thoughts" and C.I. was talking about national hysteria and how the press helped whip it up.
Let me go to the e-mail. Sarita e-mailed wondering if it's normal to worry before your first semester in college. She's worried about making good enough grades and about making friends.
I think that those are pretty normal worries. It's a new situation and I think it's pretty common to worry. Sarita's going to one college and all her friends are going somewhere else. So that probably is a normal fear after you've spent four years of high school with the same people (unless you've moved or something). It probably will be nerve wracking the way anything is but it will probably be exciting too. I talked about Sarita's e-mail with my friend Tony and he said when he was starting high school he was nervous and to psyche himself up he pretended that he was an undercover spy and that got him through the first classes until lunch by which time he was okay with high school. So maybe a game like that would help?
Another thing that was suggested was treating yourself in a little way. Like if you like Ruffles or Gardettos, grab a little bag that first day. Tell yourself, "I'll eat some of this after my first class." Or maybe you like the park or movies. Tell yourself, "After I get through my first day, I'm going to go there." Just so you have something to look forward to when you start the day. But I think you'll end up enjoying it.
It's okay to be nervous when you're doing something new. So remind yourself of that and just go through the day knowing that there are other people nervous in class with you.
If anyone has any other tips, e-mail and we'll put them up here.
Now we'll close with something C.I. passed on to me because it's about recruiting. It's from Euguene Weekly and it's called "Break From Recruiting:"
How will the teens and young adults in our community deal effectively with ubiquitous military recruiters in schools and on the phone? Eugene peace activists are doing some recruiting of their own for a regional counter-recruitment camp to be held Aug. 29 to Sept. 1 near Goldendale, Wash.
PeaceWorks and CALC's Committee for Countering Military Recruitment are promoting the Northwest "Not Your Soldier" student activist training camp for youth age 13 to 22. The cost of the camp is $25-$250 sliding scale, with scholarships available.
Registration includes meals, housing, transportation, activities and workshops. "The focus of this event is to empower young people to return to high school and college campuses ready to oppose military recruitment and work to demilitarize their schools," says Phil Weaver of PeaceWorks.
Sessions will include training in nonviolent direct action, basic rights, issues of race in military recruitment, guerilla theater, public speaking, working with adult allies, alternatives to the military, student privacy, conscientious objection and the draft .
The camps are a joint project of the Ruckus Society, Code Pink, War Resisters League, Teen Peace and the Committee for Countering Military Recruitment. For more information or to register, visit www.notyoursoldier.orgor e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 343-8548 ext. 1.