antiwar-protest

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The March on the Pentagon, 10/21/1967

Wolfe, Frank, White House photographerSeries: Johnson White House Photographs, 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969Collection: White House Photo Office Collection, 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969

On October 21, 1967, an estimated crowd of 70,000-100,000 demonstrators gathered by the Lincoln Memorial in Washington to protest the Vietnam War and march on the Pentagon in the first major national protest against the war.  In addition to the signs, chants, and other hallmarks of an anti-war demonstration, activists distributed daisies, and additionally planned to levitate the Pentagon off its foundation in an act of political theater.  By the end of the protest, the Pentagon remained in place and over 600 protesters had been jailed, and dozens hospitalized.  


Opening November 10 at the National Archives Museum:
Remembering Vietnam: Twelve Critical Episodes in the Vietnam War

This exhibition presents both iconic and recently discovered National Archives records related to 12 critical episodes in the Vietnam War. They trace the policies and decisions made by the architects of the conflict and help untangle why the United States became involved in Vietnam, why it went on so long, and why it was so divisive for American society.

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Philadelphia: U.S. out of Syria! Rally and march, April 7, 2017.

About a hundred demonstrators, mostly young, rallied and marched through Center City streets chanting against the bombing of Syria, Iraq, Libya and other targets of US imperialism. Handing out 1,100 fliers to bystanders and occasionally stopping for a street rally, speakers and marchers tried to undo weeks of intense lies and propaganda on mainstream news media. Response on the streets were friendly and receptive.

Photos and report by Joe Piette

so they’re really talking up this police chief about how he was One Of The Good Cops and was totally efficient and helped race relations, and then we get to this bit: “During the heated antiwar protests of the 1970s, Wilson…put his riot control teams in buses, then parked the buses close by, but out of sight of protesters. Appearances were important….”The use of violence,” he told Time in 1970, “is not the job of police officers.”

At the same time, when it was time to use force, Wilson put himself on the front lines. He made a point of being the first cop to confront protesters and, if it was necessary, to lob the first canister of tear gas.” oh wow give the guy a fuckin gold star, what a brave man throwing fuckin tear gas at freedom fighters. cop of the year, truly the #bluelivesmatter mascot

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New York City: Rally to Resist War and Racism, October 7, 2017.

On the 16th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, hundreds rallied at Herald Square to demand massive relief for Puerto Rico & the Caribbean – not wars from Afghanistan to Korea.

Video

Photos by redguard

Civil disobedience, as I put it to the audience, was not the problem, despite the warnings of some that it threatened social stability, that it led to anarchy. The greatest danger, I argued, was civil obedience, the submission of individual conscience to governmental authority. Such obedience led to the horrors we saw in totalitarian states, and in liberal states it led to the public’s acceptance of war whenever the so-called democratic government decided on it…

In such a world, the rule of law maintains things as they are. Therefore, to begin the process of change, to stop a war, to establish justice, it may be necessary to break the law, to commit acts of civil disobedience, as Southern black did, as antiwar protesters did.

—  Howard Zinn, You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train: A Personal History of Our Times

Draft Resistance Rally at the Department of Justice, 10/20/1967

File Unit: Photographs Taken by SA [Special Agent] Hilmer H. Krebs, 1928 - 1976Series: Precedent Case Files, 1928 - 1976Record Group 118: Records of U.S. Attorneys, 1821 - 1994


Opening November 10 at the National Archives Museum:

Remembering Vietnam: Twelve Critical Episodes in the Vietnam War

This exhibition presents both iconic and recently discovered National Archives records related to 12 critical episodes in the Vietnam War. They trace the policies and decisions made by the architects of the conflict and help untangle why the United States became involved in Vietnam, why it went on so long, and why it was so divisive for American society.

Crime, race, hippies, antiwar protesters- Nixon strategists needed a way to draw all the concerns of his Silent Majority together. As Baum explains, they found their answer with drugs.
“Nixon looked at ‘his people’ and found them quaking with rage and fear: not at Vietnam, but at the…unholy amalgam of stoned hippies, braless women, homicidal Negroes, larcenous junkies, and treasonous priests. Nixon’s genius was in hammering these images together into a rhetorical sword. People steal, burn, and use drugs not because of 'root causes’…but because they are bad people. They should be punished, not coddled…
Another poll taken just weeks before the election showed the power of television: while a majority of Americans feared the country was headed toward 'anarchy’, just 28 percent felt that crime had gone up in their own communities. Most Americans felt perfectly safe walking in their own neighborhoods, but assumed most of their fellow citizens didn’t feel the same way. As he slogged through the primaries in early 1968, Nixon was well aware of this. People don’t have to experience crime firsthand to feel threatened by it, he wrote to his old friend and mentor, Dwight Eisenhower. "I have found great audience response to this (law-and-order) theme in all parts of the country, including areas like New Hampshire where there is virtually no race problem and relatively little crime.”“
Shortly before the 1968 election, Nixon called illicit drugs "the modern curse of youth, just like the plagues and epidemics of former years. And they are decimating a generation of Americans.” He wouldn’t explicitly “declare war” on drugs for another few years. But his rhetoric was already slipping into combat fatigues.
—  Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces by Radley Balko
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Oct. 20-21, 1967. The March on the Pentagon begins.

100,000 people arrive in Washington on Friday and convene Saturday morning at the Lincoln Memorial and Reflecting Pool on the Mall. The weather is sunny and pleasant, and so far the mood is calm. 

LBJ Library photo 7051-33, and 7051-35, public domain. 

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Την γνωρίζω καλά
Αυτή την ακριβή Κυρία
Πού από καιρό έχει πάψει
Να ομολογεί την ηλικία της.

Κάθεται, στον ίδιο
Με τον δικό μου δρόμο
Στη γωνιά ακριβώς.
Απ’ τα παράθυρα της
Μπορεί να δει κάθε πρωί
Τις παιδικές φυλακές των « Πέντε Αγίων»
Το νεκροταφείο
Και, την αστυνομία πόλεως.

Το εσωτερικό του σπιτιού της, λένε,
Είναι υπέροχο
Αν και φθαρμένο λίγο
Από το Χρόνο
Από τη σκόνη
Κι από την ίδια
Πού χρόνια τώρα κάθεται
Στις ίδιες καρέκλες.

Λένε πολλά γι’ αυτήν
Μα πιο πολύ μιλούν
Για τις πολλές ερωτικές της σχέσεις
Με Στρατηγούς
Με επαγγελματίες Πολιτικούς
Με Διανοούμενους
Άλλα και με Αστυνομικούς.

Δεν υπάρχει αμφιβολία γι’ αυτό
Το μαρτυρούν άλλωστε οί εκκλησίες
Τα πολυάριθμα σχολεία
Οί φυλακές και τ’ αναμορφωτήρια
Πού γενναιόδωρα έχει χαρίσει.
Εις το Κράτος.

Το σαλόνι της είναι ανοιχτό
Για όσους δεν έχουν ασχολία
Κι αργοπεθαίνουν από πλήξη.
Κι όσοι πηγαίνουν τ’ ομολογούν
Πώς όλα είναι υπέροχα
Στο σπίτι της καλής αυτής Κυρίας…

Ιδιαίτερα το δειλινό
Στην ώρα του δείπνου
Με την ακριβή ιεροτελεστία του φαγητού
Το σπίτι γίνεται χρυσό
Ένα μνημείο ιστορικό
Με τα πορτρέτα των προγόνων της
Αγωνιστών και δολοφόνων

Με τ’ ακριβά παράσημα των «εθνικών υπηρεσιών»
Με τις περγαμηνές και τα χρυσά μαχαίρια
Με τα κεριά και τα ψηφιδωτά…
Και μες σ’ αυτά
Νέοι
Αισθητικοί κι ευαίσθητοι
Προσφέρουνε στους καλεσμένους
Education
Poetry
And
Love


*Το ποίημα αυτό του Μάνου Χατζιδάκι είναι από το βιβλίο του «Μυθολογία και Μυθολογία Δεύτερη», Εκδόσεις Άγρα (σελ.105 – 107).