United for Peace of Pierce County, WA - We nonviolently oppose the reliance on unilateral military actions rather than cooperative diplomacy.

NEWS: Airstrikes against Islamic State positions in Syria begin

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The U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State has made its first strikes inside Syria on Monday, Sept. 23.  --  The Pentagon announced late Monday that using "a mix of fighter, bomber, and Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles" the U.S. "and partner nation forces" had begun "military action against ISIS terrorists in Syria," in the words of Rear Admiral John Kirby, the press secretary for the Dept. of Defense, USA Today reported.[1]  --  An official speaking with authorization to speak publicly told Tom Vanden Brook that about twenty targets had been hit.  --  Another official, also unnamed, said that aircraft of Bahrain, Jordan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates had been involved in the attack.  --  "The stealth F-22 Raptor took part in the mission, a U.S. defense official said, marking the first time the pricey, controversial aircraft has been used in a combat operation," ABC News reported.[2]  --  COMMENT:  Mainstream media continued to ignore Robert Parry's Sept. 17 report that the U.S. has, through Russian intermediaries, worked out an arrangement with Syria to permit the strikes without provoking a reaction from Syrian forces, but this attack seems to corroborate Parry's reporting....

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BACKGROUND: FT says ISIS revenues depend on oil-smuggling network operating in cash

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The Financial Times of London, in a long article published Monday under its "Big Read" rubric and excerpted below, analyzed how ISIS is handling its finances.  --  Estimates of ISIS's daily revenues vary from $1 million and $5 million a day, Borzou Daragahi and Erika Solomon said.[1]  --  The bulk of the income comes from "a decades-old oil smuggling network, which is now being tapped by the group to finance its proto-state."  --  This vast unofficial trade network, which operates "almost exclusively in cash" and involves hundreds of entrepreneurs, "encompasses northern Iraq, northeastern Syria, southern Turkey, [and] parts of Iran."  --  "Maplecroft, the risk management firm, says in a recent report that ISIS now controls six out of 10 of Syria’s oilfields, including the big Omar facility, and at least four small fields in Iraq, including those at Ajeel and Hamreen."  --  "ISIS may be laundering up to 80,000 barrels of oil a day worth several million dollars through this shadow market.  --  The oil is smuggled through rugged mountain and desert routes or even legitimate crossings at Reyhanli, Zakho or Penjwan for consumption in Turkey, Iran, or Jordan."  --  Kurds and the Kurdish economy play a key role in the network, and bribery greases its wheels.  --  One expert says that ISIS has already amassed enough cash to keep going "for years." ...

Last Updated on Monday, 22 September 2014 05:03 Read more...
 

BACKGROUND: Moscow brokers US-Syria deal to allow anti-ISIS airstrikes inside Syria, Parry reports

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A U.S. arrangement with Syria has been worked out with Russian mediation to enable U.S. airstrikes against Islamic State targets without the risk of anti-aircraft fire from the Syrian military, Robert Parry reported Wednesday, citing an unnamed "source briefed on the secret arrangements."[1]  --  Parry also suggested that one of the motivating factors in the West's provocation of the Ukraine crisis was a desire among certain parties to subvert the emerging cooperation of Washington and Moscow in the Middle East.  --  Perhaps, Parry said, "despite the U.S.-Russian estrangement over the Ukraine crisis, the cooperation between President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin has not been extinguished; it has instead just gone further underground." ...

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UFPPC statement: Absurd and dangerous

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UNITED FOR PEACE OF PIERCE COUNTY

"We nonviolently oppose the reliance on unilateral military actions rather than cooperative diplomacy."

ABSURD AND DANGEROUS

September 18, 2014

The strategy that President Barack Obama has announced to address the challenge of the Islamic State is absurd and dangerous.

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BACKGROUND: The post-1989 international order has come apart (Michael Ignatieff)

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Michael Ignatieff has donned the Cold War-liberal mantle of George Kennan and Isaiah Berlin and revised a July speech as an essay on the emerging world order in the latest number of the New York Review of Books.  --  "Crimea and MH17 marked the moment for the West when the post-1989 international order came apart," Ignatieff said.[1]  --  Ignatieff is bullish on the USA in the long term, but recognizes that the winds of history have been blowing in favor of countries practicing what he calls "authoritarian capitalism."  --   "The central questions now are whether the new authoritarians are stable and whether they are expansionist," he proposed, but did not attempt to answer those questions.  --  (In case you're wondering whether it isn't the West that is expansionist, Ignatieff thinks that's a moot point:  "It no longer matters whether the West brought this new Russia upon itself by expanding NATO aggressively to its borders.")  --  Ignatieff holds Russia's Vladimir Putin to be thoroughly malefic and denies that Putin has been acting rationally, but nevertheless holds out hope that the Ukrainian crisis can be settled:  "Western constitutional experts should help Ukraine to devolve power to the regions and guarantee Russian speakers a full place in the Ukrainian political future.  --  In the long term, Europe should give Ukraine a timetable toward accession into the E.U.  --  International financial institutions should use conditional loans to force a corrupt Ukrainian political elite to clean house."  --  "Neutrality for Ukraine" might have been considered, but that "isn’t a workable option as long as Crimea remains annexed."  --  Ignatieff hasn't much to say about the Islamic State; this revised text is dated Aug. 27, before Barack Obama's Sept. 10 declaration that "We will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL."  --  Ignatieff probably isn't holding his breath:  here, he judges it "likely" that the caliphate will "endure."  --  The best we can look forward in our lifetimes, according to Ignatieff, is a "pluralist" order that "accepts that there are open and closed societies, free and authoritarian ones."  --  Good-bye to "the illusion . . . that economics would prove stronger than politics and that global commerce would soften the rivalries of empire."  --  COMMENT:  The blind eye that Ignatieff turns to the many authoritarian elements of the societies he calls "free" and "open" makes clear that the Harvard professor is an apologist for Western élites who has set himself the task of rallying public opinion....

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NEWS: 'US at war with Islamic State' (Hagel); Dempsey to recommend use of US troops

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Despite President Obama's assurances that U.S. ground troops are not returning to Iraq, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told Congress on Tuesday "that U.S. commanders have already sought permission, on at least one occasion, to deploy small teams of U.S. advisers into battle with Iraqi troops," the Washington Post reported, adding that "while Obama has held firm, he might be persuaded to change his mind" about using U.S. troops.[1]  --  Rather than calling him insubordinate, the Post said that "Dempsey was walking a fine line between questioning the judgment of Obama, the commander in chief, and sharing his own professional military opinion with lawmakers and the public."  --  "[A] legislative debate about war powers . . . is expected to begin after the Nov. 4 elections," Craig Whitney said.  --  "Earlier in the hearing, Hagel told lawmakers that 'we are at war' with the Islamic State and warned that 'this will not be an easy or brief effort.'" ...

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ANALYSIS: Obama lacks legal justification to bomb Syria

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The Obama White House appears to be indifferent to the fact that "airstrikes in Syria would . . . be a direct violation of the international law of armed conflict and the United Nations charter," the Daily Beast said Monday.[1]  --  "Experts are upset the White House doesn’t seem to be upholding the United States’ long held support for the adherence to international law when dealing with war," Josh Rogin said.  --  The view expressed at the State Department is, as usual, one of pure cynicism:  "The President has the authority as Commander-in-Chief under the United States Constitution to take actions to protect our people.  --  And any action we take overseas, of course, we will have an international legal basis for doing so.  --  I don’t have predictions about what that is, given we haven’t announced additional actions yet."  --  Translation:  We'll make something up when the time comes....

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NEWS: NATO countries arming Ukraine

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Mirroring Russia's denial of military aid to separatists in the East, NATO countries denied on Sunday the claim of Ukraine's defense minister that they are delivering arms to Ukraine, the BBC reported.[1]  --  "I have no right to disclose any specific country we reached that agreement with.  But the fact is that those weapons are already on the way to us -- that's absolutely true, I can officially tell you," said Ukrainian Defense Minister Valery Heletey.  --  Reuters specified that the remark came in a "press conference."[2]  --  RIA Novosti reported that in additional remarks to Ukrainian Fifth channel, Heteley said:  "I also spoke [at the NATO summit in September] in private with the defense ministers of the leading countries of the world, those that can help us, and they heard us, we have the supply of arms underway."[3]  --  The Russian agency explained the sleight of hand.  --  "Earlier this week, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that he was able to negotiate with a number of NATO countries on direct deliveries of modern weapons to Ukraine.   --  According to the presidential adviser Yuri Lutsenko, an agreement was reached at the NATO summit in Wales on the supply of weapons from the United States, France, Poland, Norway, and Italy.   --  All these countries later denied this statement, but the Ukrainian president insisted that a number of NATO countries had agreed on direct supplies of such weapons.  --  NATO has repeatedly said that the organization itself cannot supply weapons and other military equipment to Ukraine.   --  However, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that NATO would not interfere in the decisions of individual member states regarding this kind of decision." ...

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BACKGROUND: Qatar playing both sides of nascent anti-ISIS war

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According to the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram, on the eve of an Arab League ministerial meeting "several Arab officials" said that Qatar is "expanding its support, 'both financial and in intelligence,' to I.S. [the Islamic State, a.k.a. ISIS or ISIL], 'essentially with the purpose of challenging Saudi Arabia.'"[1]  --  But Qatar also has close political, economic, and military relations with the U.S. (which sold it Apache helicopters, Patriot defense systems, and other arms worth $11 billion in 2014) and with the European Union (where it has invested more than $65 billion).  --  Qatar also shelters a radical Sunni cleric from Egypt and gives him air time on Al Jazeera, which has caused tensions between Doha and other Arab states.  --  That cleric, Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi, on Saturday criticized Arab states who are cooperating with U.S. plans to wage war on the Islamic State, Reuters reported.[2]  --  "I totally disagree with Da’ish [i.e. the Islamic State/ISIS/ISIL] in ideology and means, but I don’t at all accept that the one to fight it is America, which does not act in the name of Islam but rather in its own interests, even if blood is shed," he said.  --  The statement by the cleric, who this summer declared its caliphate to be "null and void," "may increase the fears of a backlash against Arab governments that publicly join the campaign" led by the United States, the New York Times reported Sunday.[3]  --  Michael Gordon illustrated the extreme nervousness of these governments when he reported the assertion of a U.S. official that while "several" Arab countries have offered to conduct airstrikes against the Islamic State, none of them could be named specifically....

Last Updated on Monday, 15 September 2014 00:53 Read more...
 

ANALYSIS: 'Obama’s presidency has come full circle by reinventing the neocon dogmas'

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In a commentary on the U.S. plan for a new war in the Middle East posted Friday by the Strategic Culture Foundation, Melkulangara Bhadrakumar called it a "repackaged version" of George W. Bush's "coalition of the willing."[1]  --  The retired Indian diplomat emphasized that in describing his plan Barack Obama "avoided holding out any categorical affirmation of the unity of Iraq."  --  Bhadrakumar noted that the U.S. is embarking once again on nation-building, an enterprise that has again and again produced colossal failures.  --  As for American tactics, "The U.S. has learned nothing and still hopes to use extremist elements as instruments of regional policies."  --  But the prospects for success are dim, and Bhadrakumar suggested that the White House has already resigned itself to failure:  "Iraq and Syria in their present form may well cease to exist at the end of it all.  --  Of course, the really intriguing part is that such a dénouement may well be the U.S.’s geopolitical objective.  In a recent interview with the New York Times, Obama himself put his finger on the unraveling of the Sykes-Picot agreement of 1916 as the core issue of the Middle Eastern politics."  --  "Obama’s strategy completely bypasses the U.N. and, in reality, undermines the U.N. Charter. . . . Obama’s presidency has come full circle by reinventing the neocon dogmas it once professed to reject.  On the pretext of fighting the I.S., which the U.S. and its allies created in the first instance, what is unfolding is a massive neocon project to remold the Muslim Middle East to suit the U.S.’ geopolitical objectives." ...

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NEWS: War? Not a war. Islamic State? Not a state. Not Islamic, either.

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The neo-Orwellian character of the 20th century deepened this week as President Barack Obama declared a war that is not a war against a state that is not a state.  --  However, Secretary of State John Kerry said on Thursday that we can "think about it as being a war" if we like.[1]  --  And if we can think about it as a war against al-Qaeda, he'll be especially pleased.  --  He told CNN on Thursday that "This group is and has been al Qaeda.  By trying to change its name, it doesn't change who it is."  --  Kerry claimed to know what ISIS "is," but his intelligence services don't seem so sure:  "The CIA estimates the Islamic States in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is made up of anywhere between 20,000 to 31,500 fighters, according to reports Thursday night," The Hill reported Thursday.[2]  --  As for the president's strategy for combating the Islamic State, many are criticizing the plan, the Wall Street Journal said.[3]  --  The principal problem, one unnamed U.S. official said, is that Obama's plan for a proxy war (or whatever it is) involves "relying on lots of different forces who are in some cases highly unreliable and highly divided."  --  Rand Paul called Obama's approach "unconstitutional," but also said, according to Politico:  "This is an intervention, and I don’t always support interventions but this is one I do support."[4] ...

Last Updated on Friday, 12 September 2014 06:36 Read more...
 

NEWS: WHO reports Ebola spreading 'exponentially' in Liberia

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All but one of Liberia's counties has reported confirmed cases of Ebola, and the World Health Organization reported Monday that "The number of new cases is moving far faster than the capacity to manage them in Ebola-specific treatment centers."[1]  --  "[T]he number of new cases is increasing exponentially," WHO said.  --  The organization said that Liberia's needs "have completely outstripped the government’s and partners’ capacity to respond," the Washington Post reported.[2]  --  "It remained unclear when and how more Ebola treatment facilities would be established and who might be willing to staff them," Brady Dennis said.  --  "The WHO said Monday that it would continue to push for more aid in Liberia and the other affected countries -- Guinea, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, and Senegal -- and that it would 'hold the world accountable for responding to this dire emergency with its unprecedented dimensions of human suffering.'" ...

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NEWS: Obama to declare war to 'destroy' ISIS in speech on Wednesday

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On Wednesday, in a speech to the nation, President Barack Obama will announce a war against the ISIS that U.S. officials say "may take three years to complete," the New York Times reported Sunday.[1]  --  It is to have three phases:  first, "an air campaign," second, "an intensified effort to train, advise, or equip the Iraqi military, Kurdish fighters, and possibly members of Sunni tribes," and third, "destroying the terrorist army in its sanctuary inside Syria."  --  "The military campaign Mr. Obama is preparing has no obvious precedent," Eric Schmitt, Michael Gordon, and Helene Cooper said.  --  The Obama administration "plans to play the central role in building a coalition to counter ISIS," but does not intend to use U.S. ground troops.  --  Instead, Obama intends to organize an international coalition whose make-up and roles are still uncertain will make various contributions....

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COMMENTARY: Chomsky thinks 'end of the era of civilization' likely

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Noam Chomsky has rarely been so pessimistic.  --  On Friday he cast his eyes over all of recorded history, and announced "[t]he likely end of the era of civilization."[1]  --  COMMENT: Chomsky's growing pessimism puts one in mind of the later development of H.G. Wells, who came to think that, as he put it in The Croquet Player (1936), "Civilization, progress, all that, we are discovering, was a delusion."  --  Will Chomsky ultimately reach a similar conclusion? ...

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NEWS: Ukraine cease-fire holding so far

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A cease-fire agreement reached in Minsk on Friday between Ukraine and pro-Russian rebels (with Russia and the OSCE as parties) "appears to be holding," with "[n]o fighting reported overnight," the BBC reported Saturday morning.[1]  --  The Washington Post called the agreement, which came as a result of a Russian initiative, "a first step toward the type of dormant conflict that Russia has exploited to exert control over former satellites in the decades since the Soviet Union’s collapse."[2]  --  Fear that Mariupol was about to fall to pro-Russian forces appears to have pushed Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to accept a cease-fire.  --  "The terms of the deal underscored Russia’s apparent willingness to commit far more resources than the West to achieve its aims in Ukraine," said Michael Birnbaum and Annie Gowen.  --  "Kiev has asked for Western military aid, but relatively little has been forthcoming, in part because of Western caution about getting pulled into a proxy military conflict with Russia inside a non-NATO-member nation."  --  Russia Today reported that Lugansk’s leader Igor Plotnitsky said:  "The cease-fire does not mean a shift from our course of breaking away from Ukraine."[3]  --  Because there is no agreement on the political questions that underlie the fighting, many doubt the cease-fire will last long....

Last Updated on Saturday, 06 September 2014 07:26 Read more...
 

NEWS & COMMENTARY: NATO v. Russia is all about energy & pipeline geopolitics

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Readers of USA Today are supposed to sympathize with frustrated Western leaders who have supposedly been trying to find a peaceful way of helping democratic Ukraine by using economic sanctions to discourage  "Russia's aggressive moves to bolster separatists' hold on eastern Ukraine."[1]  --  This narrative sees "sovereign" Ukraine as standing up to separatists who have been spurning "democracy," expressed in February's Maidan Revolution.  --  Now, just when Ukraine's staunch new president, Petro Poroshenko, was about to wrap up a military offensive against those traitorous rebels,  an infusion of Russian support has turned the tide, one that is about to give Russia (if a cease-fire is imminent) "a victory," and leaving NATO no choice but to "counter Russian aggression in Ukraine."  --  "One idea [NATO leaders] are considering is a quick-reaction force of a few thousand troops that would defend NATO countries from Russian aggression," Oren Dorell said.  --  COMMENTARY:  What this narrative misses is that the supposed democratic triumph of the Maidan Revolution was in large part a Western-backed coup d'état motivated by economic interests.  --  Russian "aggression" has really been a series of hastily improvised actions that from a geopolitical point of view are chiefly a defensive response to aggressive Western moves.  --  This has rarely been recognized in Western media, but back in March Nafeez Ahmed, writing in the London Guardian, did note the neglect in media reports of "the role of the United States in interfering in Ukrainian politics and civil society."[2]  --  It is simply not the case the U.S. and NATO are on the side of the angels and the Russians are evil aggressors.  --  "Both powers are motivated by the desire to ensure that a geostrategically pivotal country with respect to control of critical energy pipeline routes remains in their own sphere of influence."  --  That major media in the West are unwilling to discuss these obvious facts corroborates the Chomskyan view that their reporting is for the most part more interested in serving state interests by manufacturing consent than in accurately analyzing events....

Last Updated on Tuesday, 09 September 2014 05:34 Read more...
 

COMMENTARY: European officials fear deflation is imminent

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As though Europe did not have enough problems, the economies of the Eurozone are on the brink of a deflationary spiral.  --  On Sunday, Bloomberg Businessweek editorialized on the subject, saying that "the recovery has stopped" and that "Outright deflation, with all the perils that brings, is an imminent threat."[1]  --  Economic and sociopolitical stars are moving in a disastrous way, and "[c]onditions are increasingly aligned for deflation."  --  On Monday, French President Francois Hollande and European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi met and agreed "that deflation and weak growth were threatening the European Union's economy, an official in the president's office said," Reuters reported Tuesday.[2]  --  BACKGROUND:  Also on Tuesday, a somewhat technical Investor's Chonicle reviewed the reasons for the particularly parlous nature of deflation.[3]  --  As this graph demonstrates, World War II was preceded by an extended period of deflation....

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DOCUMENT: 'Acts of inhumanity on an unimaginable scale'

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The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on Sept. 1 published the text of a lengthy address delivered by the deputy high commissioner summarizing in bone-chilling fashion the extent of human rights violations being systematically carried out in Iraq by the forces of the Islamic State (a.k.a. ISIS or ISIL).[1]  --  This catalog of horrors is far from complete, since the Islamic State also controls large parts of Syria.  --  After hearing the report at an emergency session, the U.N. Human Rights Council decided to send an 11-person team to investigate abuses, the New York Times reported.[2]  --  "Russia already demonstrated support for Iraq by delivering advanced attack fighter aircraft, its ambassador, Alexey Borodavkin, said," according to the Times.  --  "In a criticism of American and Arab support for antigovernment armed groups in Syria, [Borodavkin] asserted that 'all this could have been avoided' if states had cooperated with President Bashar al-Assad’s armed forces in Syria." ...

Last Updated on Tuesday, 02 September 2014 20:09 Read more...
 

VIDEO: Donetsk Republic leaders say they want independence from Ukraine

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Below is a link to an under-reported 30-minute press conference given to announce the formation of "the armed forces of the Donetsk National Republic," which are now fighting Ukrainian forces with some success in eastern Ukraine, as well as an introduction by a sympathizer who arranged for its translation into several languages.[1,2]  --  The press conference was held on Aug. 24 (the anniversary of Ukraine's independence from the Soviet Union, in 1991).  --  The goal is no longer an autonomous status within a federal Ukraine, but independence from Ukraine.  --  Federalization through referendum would have been possible three months ago but "[n]o federalization can be possible today" because "too much blood has been spilled" and the Ukrainian campaign against them represents "a nationalistic ideology that has no respect for human life."  -- Besides, "Ukraine of the East and the West is an artificially created conglomerate," they said.  --  "Unfortunately, dear journalists, the West tries to invade us with a regularity of 30-50 years," said 38-year-old Alexander V. Zakharchenko, chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Donetsk National Republic.  --  "The First World War [1914-1918], the Great Patriotic War [eastern campaign of World War II, 1941-1945, which they accuse the West of failing to report], the Crimean war [1853-1856] before that and so on well into the depths of history."  --  He spoke approvingly, however, of the "European ideals of equality, fraternity, and the French revolution."  --  The rebels said they are getting help from "volunteers," but made light of the charge that Russia has sent units to fight.  --  If that were the case, Zakharchenko said, "[w]e'd be talking about a battle of Kiev or a possible capture of Lvov."  --  "Of course, the Russian help would be very desirable, but from a political point of view it is impossible and unrealistic."  --  They refuted the charge that they are "terrorists."  --  The real goal of Kiev in the present campaign, they said, is the resources of the region, such as shale gas.  --  "Kiev and the West made a big mistake by awaking us."  --  They said that Kiev has concealed the number of casualties inflicted on Ukrainian forces.  --  "Let everybody know if you received a 'missing in action' letter, then most likely, your husband, brother, or son got killed." ...

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NEWS & VIDEO: Poroshenko appeals for help to West; Putin calls conflict 'immense tragedy'

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In reporting on Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's urgent appeal to E.U. leaders for help against what he called a Russian campaign of "military aggression and terror," the New York Times failed to remind Poroshenko that it was he himself who, on the night of June 30-July 1, unleashed the campaign of military aggression and terror to which Russia is responding.  --  From the Ukrainian point of view, this is on Ukrainian territory, so by definition Ukraine is within its rights.  --  But this neglects the fact that Poroshenko's presidency is the culmination of a series of events that are difficult to justify and that weaken the legitimacy of his decision to wage a civil war against the Russian-speaking population of eastern Ukraine.  --  The fact is that each side is clinging to a historical account it holds dear, that each side is invoking the dangerous passions of nationalism, and that it is hard to find any commentators who are not committed to one side or the other.  --  Russian President Vladimir Putin's latest comments on the situation, made at two-and-one-half-hour Q&A session at a summer camp of hundreds of young academics, can be viewed at the site below.[2]  --  Putin's remarks are dismissed as propaganda in Western media, but they deserve more attention than they are getting.  --  Putin told his listeners that "our Western partners with the support of fairly radically inclined and nationalist-leaning groups carried out a coup d'état [in Ukraine].  --  No matter what anyone says, we all understand what happened.  --  There are no fools among us. . . . This was a case of the United States and European countries getting fully involved in a change of power, an anti-constitutional change of power carried out by force, and the part of the country that does not accept this change is being suppressed with brute military force and the use of planes, artillery, multiple-launch rocket systems, and tanks.  --  If this is what today's European values are about, then I am more than disappointed." ...

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NEWS: As Ukrainian forces fall back, NATO says it may consider Ukraine's application to join

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The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine were "gaining ground after weeks of losses."[1]  --  What the Wall Street Journal described as "a volunteer unit fighting for Kiev" was "forced to abandon two key villages on a road linking Luhansk to Russia," Gregory L. White said.  --  The Journal used the euphemism "Kiev's forces" to disguise the fact that Ukraine's military strategy has involved bombardment by regular army forces followed by urban fighting by supposedly patriotic but often neo-fascist militias.  --  The Journal used the passive voice in order not to identify who is doing the targeting and killing, but did not that "[c]ivilians trying to flee the conflict have been targeted and killed."  --  Also on Friday, NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen "indicated NATO could consider Ukraine's application to join the alliance, shortly after Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk announced he was putting Ukraine on course for NATO membership," BBC reported.[2] ...

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Meeting schedule

United for Peace of Pierce County meets 7:00-8:30 p.m. on the first and third Thursdays of every month at First United Methodist Church in Tacoma (621 Tacoma Avenue South).

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