Sunday, May 4, 2008

Gandhi Peace Brigade /Reverend Cox Comes to DC

News Update! Desiree Fairooz was initially charged with two counts of assaulting a police officer and one count of disorderly conduct for telling Condoleezza Rice,"The blood of millions of Iraqis is on your hands!"
Judge Ringell honored her actions by referring to Thoreau, Gandhi, and Dr. Martin Luther King, all models of resistance, and explained how they understood they would eventually spend time in jail for their acts. He told Desiree," Some day you'll have to accept the consequences of your acts, but not in this forum [his court]." He found her guilty of "disorderly conduct" and could have given her 90 days in jail, but instead he sentenced her to 5 days suspended sentence, 3 months of unsupervised probation, and $50 for a mandatory victim's fund. Thank you Desiree ... and thank you Judge Ringell!

Dear Friends,

Leslie has known Reverend Ben Elton Cox, one of the last three remaining Freedom Riders, for forty-five years. She asked him to come to Washington DC to talk with Chairman John Conyers about starting impeachment hearings for Vice President Cheney. "Reverend Cox is an amazing mentor. Ben, Edward Blankenheim (my father) and John Lewis were Freedom Riders together during the Civil Rights Movement. If my father were here today, he would argue for impeachment as well." The Freedom Ride Story:

During his stay Reverend Cox met with Chairman John Conyers, Dean Pollard of Howard University's School of Divinity, Marcus Raskin of the Institute for Policy Studies, Reverend Yearwood of the Hip Hop Caucus and Gael Murphy of CodePink. He shared his stories of courage and commitment with the CodePink House during our weekly Wednesday pot luck dinner: "We [the Freedom Riders] drew up our last will and testament before we left because we thought we might be killed. I have been arrested 17 times for my civil rights work and I've spent 38 days in solitary confinement. I've been shot at trying to get people to register to vote and my life has been threatened 87 times in writing."
Freedom Rider Endured Jail, Shootings, Attacks To Get Out Black Vote

Photos of Reverend Cox Visit with Congressman Conyers and CodePink in DC:

Chairman Conyers was a gracious host, as usual. He said that there are situations when you're right [impeachment], but if the timing is wrong, the significance is diminished. Some in the administration have resigned, and we've let them go, but there are others that it doesn't matter if they leave office or not, they will still be held accountable and prosecuted. Some crimes are so unjust, so against any form of decency, that they must be investigated. Investigations are ongoing and they won't stop. There are international lawyers looking into this administration's war crimes and how they can be prosecuted by the Hague.

Leslie and I have met with Chairman Conyers on six occasions and he wants to continue the "National Conversation on Impeachment". Will these talks lead to impeachment hearings for Cheney or will they lead to more talks? Only the Chairman knows for sure. Since Fallon's "resignation", Chairman Conyers may now be the only person capable of standing between the Bush administration and a war with Iran. On one occasion he told us,"Why don't I advise the president if he goes into Iran without Congressional authority that he could be subject to removal immediately." Leslie's response:"Do it BEFORE they attack Iran!!"

Congressman Conyers doesn't want to jeopardize Obama's chances of being elected, but as we've suggested, impeachment hearings could only help Obama because the candidates would finally be forced to speak to the issues. McCain would be put on the defensive and have to distance himself from the Bush administration's polices. If impeachment hearings happen after the election, justice would be served, but it may be too late for Iran.

Peace and Freedom,

Jes & Leslie

"For Eli" by Andrea Gibson

"There's no doubt in my mind that the United States is planning right now, as we speak, a military strike against Iran." Scott Ritter on Democracy Now!:

"It is 1939 all over again. The world waits helplessly for the next act of naked aggression by rogue states. Only this time the rogue states are not the Third Reich and Fascist Italy. They are the United States and Israel."

"The Pentagon is considering 'potential military courses of action' against Iran, warns the nation's top military officer, Admiral Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff."

U.S. defense secretary Gates said the deployment of a second aircraft carrier to the Gulf could serve as a "reminder" to Iran of American resolve to defend its interest in the region:

Jes & Leslie ... A Journey for Peace and Freedom:

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