to do list

envision : nap : whisper : laugh : caress : sing : love : consider : hug : create : wonder
but above all

Traveling Hopefully

"Not only is another world possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing."

-Arundhati Roy

Monday, January 24, 2011

Debra Sweet: Why I Oppose a Grand Jury Investigation of Anti-War Activists

Read Debra's excellent article here.

Three of the anti-war activists targeted by the FBI

Sarah Martin is a 71 year old mother of 3, grandmother of 5 and great-grandmother of 1. She was born and raised in Duluth and has lived in the Twin Cities for 40 years. She is a retired nurse who worked at Regions Hospital in St. Paul for 25 years. She said of herself, "I have been peace and justice activist since the '60s when my eyes began to open when I learned we'd been duped and lied to about the justifications for going to war against the people of Vietnam." Sarah joined WAMM (Women Against Military Madness) in the early 80s and has actively opposed every war the U.S. has waged. For the past 10 years she has been mainly focused on the middle east. A year ago she attempted to visit Palestine but was detained and deported by Israel when they learned she wanted to see the reality of Palestinian lives under Israeli occupation. She is currently on the WAMM board and an active member of the WAMM Mideast Committee.

Tracy Molm is 29 and was born and raised in MN. She grew up in Richfield and was a member of the her high school debate team. She went to the University of Minnesota for college with a major in women's studies and minor in political science. She has been active in the peace and justice movement since 2000 when she joined to protest the impending war on Iraq. Tracy works as a union organizer for AFSCME Local 3800, the clerical workers union at the University of Minnesota. She is an energetic and enthusiastic auntie to many of her friends children. It has been remarked many times that she is more of a kid than not.

Tracy joined the Anti War Committee through debate, where she learned to think critically about public policy and met others who were politically active. Her love for people motivated her to do more for the peace and justice movement including learning about Palestine and its over six decade long occupation. From there she had the opportunity to learn more and see for herself the reality that Palestinians in the West Bank live through every day on a delegation in August of 2004.

Anh Pham immigrated to the U.S. from Viet Nam with her family in 1975 after the end of the war. Her family raised her with a strong sense of community service and she taught Sunday school to toddlers at the first Vietnamese Buddhist temple in Minnesota. In high school she participated in Amnesty International where she attended a protest against the Persian Gulf War, conscious of the impact of war and separation on her own family. Upon entering the University of Minnesota, she was active in the local MPIRG (MN Public Interest Research Group) chapter and then worked with the YWCA, which included chaperoning a group of at-risk young girls to study border issues between the US-Mexico at El-Paso and Juarez, Mexico. That same summer she also became active in the Progressive Student Organization and went to Cuba to the World Youth and Student Festival. She was also active in student governance and served on the Student Services Fees Committee.

After leaving the University, she joined the Anti-War Committee (AWC). As a member of the AWC she helped organize local forums, pot-lucks and teach-ins as well as buses to Washington D.C.for protests. She traveled to El Salvador to attend an anti-globalization conference and then to Israel and the occupied territories of Palestine where she met with NGO workers and activist who shared their struggles. Upon returning she spoke out about what she saw to share stories that she didn't think were being communicated to the collective consciousness. She continues to believe to this day that the most important work for anti-war and solidarity activist to do is to speak to our own leaders about our military spending and foreign policy here in the U.S. Currently, she has returned to work that is close to home by advocating for the rights of all immigrants in this country.

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