Monday, March 31, 2014




March 28, 2014

WASHINGTON -- Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) Co-Chairs Reps. Ral M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) released the following statement after a vote by the United Nations Human Rights Council on the use of drones:

“Today's vote at the United Nations reinforces the need for greater oversight of the U.S. drone program. Instead of working closely with the international community to help strengthen current international standards on the use of drones, the U.S. government decided to boycott a discussion of the draft resolution. We are troubled by the ease with which dialogue and diplomacy--values at the center of the president's foreign policy—were cast aside in this debate. Our national security would be stronger with international standards regarding the use of drones. No country has a monopoly on armed drone technology. As of 2011, 76 nations had drone technology of some kind. It is clearly in our interest to help establish the norms and rules that will govern the use of drones by all nations in the future.

Similarly, it's important to ensure that the American people and our allies understand the legal justification and on-the-ground impact of our drone policy. The current lack of transparency harms our relationships with other countries and erodes our ability to collaborate on key global security issues.

Today's vote highlights the need for Congress to play a larger role in overseeing and regulating the use of lethal force abroad. Requiring that our intelligence agencies provide an annual public accounting of the number of civilian casualties caused by drone strikes overseas - a measure included in the proposed Fiscal Year 2014 Intelligence Authorization Act - would be a good start. Members of the CPC are ready to work with our colleagues and the administration to ensure that our policies are transparent, compliant with existing international law, and beneficial to our long-term national security.”

The Congressional Progressive Caucus held a hearing on drones in May of last year, the first such hearing on the topic. You can learn more about it at

They thought they were free......

What no one seemed to notice. . . was the ever widening gap. . .between the government and the people. . . And it became always wider. . . the whole process of its coming into being, was above all diverting, it provided an excuse not to think for people who did not want to think anyway . . . (it) gave us some dreadful, fundamental things to think about . . .and kept us so busy with continuous changes and 'crises' and so fascinated . . . by the machinations of the 'national enemies,' without and within, that we had no time to think about these dreadful things that were growing, little by little, all around us. . .”
- Milton Mayer - They Thought They Were Free - The Germans, 1933-45

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Upcoming events in the Asheville area this week

This image came from a Move to Amend email.


NOW IS THE TIME TO REGISTER TO VOTE. There is no more ‘same-day registration’ at early voting, so please register now for the upcoming primary in May. Also be sure to update your registration if you have moved. Last day to register/update is April 11, 2014. Instructions at the bottom of this email on how to check your registration or help someone else register.

Join WNC Green Congregations for a Prayer Breakfast with Peter Illyn of Restoring Eden. Coffee & breakfast provided; event includes a Q&A panel with Peter, Dr. Mallory McDuff, author of Sacred Acts: How Churches are Working to Protect Earth’s Climate, and local clergy and lay leaders. Time is 9 AM to 10:30 AM and location is The Cathedral of All Souls in Biltmore Village. Free and open to the public. RSVP by Friday, March 28th by emailing Rebekah at or 828-258-8737 ext 206.

A Panel Discussion on Food Security, Access and Hunger in Western North Carolina will be from 6 to 8 PM at UNCA Highsmith Student Union. Asheville is home to a thriving local food movement AND yet still faces hunger issues and food insecurity. Hear from local food organizers about what's going on, what works and what doesn't in addressing food access in Asheville today! Speakers include: Olufemi Lewis- Ujamaa Freedom Market, Susan Sides- The Lord's Acre, Sir Charles Gardener- Gardens United, Randal Pfleger- Bountiful Cities, Brandee Boggs- Asheville Buncombe Food Policy Council, Allison Casparian- Bounty and Soul Black Mountain.

Monday is the ACA enrollment deadline and local MoveOn members and area residents will gather at Pritchard Park to attend "Health Care for All". They will gather with signs and flyers in a high-traffic area to remind people that NC politicians are responsible for blocking more than 5 million people nationwide from getting health coverage by refusing to accept federal money to expand Medicaid. In NC 318,000 are not able to receive health coverage! Attendees will be asking drivers to honk their horns for health care, and giving flyers to pedestrians with more details on how they can join the fight.  They are there to demand that Governor McCrory and the legislators agree to accept federal Medicaid funding. Location is Pritchard Park in downtown Asheville and time is 5 PM.

This will be the 2nd annual edition of the Bash which will serve as a kick-off for Greenfest 2014. The outdoor event will feature DJing by the Blue Echo and a live drumming performance. Delicious vegan snacks will be provided by Rosetta's. Attendees will be able to decorate their own reusable shopping bags and repurpose last year's Greenfest t-shirts into stylish new creations using nothing but a pair of scissors. Co-sponsors: Blue Echo, Eco-Reps, Free Store, African Drum Ensemble. Free and open to the public, but dinning hall charges apply. Time is 12 to 3 PM. Location is Overlook Hall – Backyard.

Poll Monitor Training by League of Women Voters of Asheville-Buncombe County on April 1 at 6 PM to 8 PM. Location is West Asheville Library. For questions or more information please contact: or

Our next general meeting of the Mountain People's Assembly will be focused on organizing a voter registration drive from April 2-April 11 in low-income and marginalized communities. Voters have to be registered by April 11th to participate in the primaries. Voter registration, voter education, and GOTV efforts have been identified as a primary focus for the Mountain People's Assembly and is in line with a major focus of HKonJ (our statewide affiliate that began the Moral Monday movement). We are working to combat the effects of the unjust voter suppression legislation that was passed in the NCGA in 2013. We will be in Lord Auditorium for this important meeting and organizing event. This is a Call to Action to join Mountain People’s Assembly on April 1, 2014 for Voter Registration training. This is a major push to get our volunteers ready to properly register voters to be eligible to participate in the Primary on May 6, 2014. The deadline to register is April 11. It is time to go to work. Come join us to make it happen! Please arrive promptly. We have a lot of work to do - the library closes at 8:00PM sharp. We will have to exit by 7:50 at the latest. Please arrive on time at 6 PM. Location is Lord Auditorium at Pack Library in downtown Asheville. Questions: Call 828.423.6476.

World Affairs Council of Western North Carolina Presents “Cuba in Reach? Travel, Trade and Transitions in Havana and Washington” by Jon Elliston -- writer and editor for Carolina Public Press and WNC Magazine. Ever since the Cuban Revolution and the resultant missile crisis that was a defining moment in diplomacy in the nuclear age, Cuba has had a strange relationship with the US. This is cosponsored by the Department of Political Science, and the Osher Life Long Learning Institute. Time is 7:30 PM and location is Manheimer Room at Reuter Center at UNCA. No admission charge to WAC members or UNC-A students. All others $10. For further information, email or call 828-242-6380.

Transit Committee Meeting will be held from 3:30 to 5 PM. The location is the First Floor Conference Room at Asheville City Hall.

Time is 7 PM (program starts at 7:15) at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville (corner of Charlotte & Edwin). Sierra Club, Western North Carolina Alliance & Green Drinks will present on “Moving Beyond Coal & Coal Ash Spills.” Emma Greenbaum of Sierra Club's Beyond Coal campaign will discuss the current status with coal ash spills, regulations, law suits, and plans for moving beyond coal use. Free & open to the public. Contact:, or 828-683-2176 for more information.

ABFPC Meeting of the Whole will be from 6 to 8 PM at the Sherrill Center at UNCA. We got snowed out the first time, but Mother Nature can't keep us down! We are STILL excited to celebrate the progress made across the community over the past year in supporting healthy food access and food systems in Asheville and Buncombe County. Join us as we set our strategic priorities for the upcoming year. This meeting will be a great opportunity to learn more about our work, how we can support your efforts and priorities, and ways to get involved. Haven't participated in an ABFPC meeting before? Want to learn more about us? We'll be hosting a new member orientation at 4 PM prior to the start of the meeting. Please RSVP by emailing us at Location is 227 Campus Drive.

Local food-based businesses will be providing tasty samples at this environmental fair and music performance. The Campus Bike Shop will also be on hand showing off their latest rentals and helping with any spring tune ups your two-wheeled chariot may require. Enter a recycled art contest by creatively reassembling materials from the UNC Asheville waste stream, provided by the Student Environmental Center. We're ten days late but we didn't want to miss the chance to celebrate the coming of spring with a glorious bonfire! Come enjoy vegan s'mores and acoustic music with a gaggle of your Pagan friends. Kombucha will be served -- don't forget to take a portion of the 'mother' or scoby so that you can start your own batch at home. Instructions will be provided. Free and open to the public, but dining hall charges apply. Time is 8 to 10 PM, location is Outdoor MLPRK.

A four-week Dialogue on Race will be held every Thursday in April from 6:00 to 7:30 PM at the Carver Center, 101 Carver Avenue in Asheville. The four sessions lead up to the annual Stand Against Racism on the last weekend of April. Topics include: April 3 - Racism Hurts Everyone (definitions, film on white privilege, institutional racism); April 10 - Legacy of Slavery (presentation on slave records by Drew Reisinger, Buncombe County Register of Deeds); April 17 - Legacy of Civil Rights Pioneers (panel discussion); April 24 - We Shall Overcome (uplifting film about unlikely friendship between an embittered Ku Klux Klan leader and an outspoken black woman activist in Durham, NC). Small group discussions will follow each presentation. A potluck dinner will be held following the four sessions. Sponsors include the Chamber of Commerce, the local Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Corporation, Thomas Chapel AME Church, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley, and the YWCA of Asheville. To register or for more information, please email or call her at 419-0730.

Opening Night Film & Reception will be held at Blue Spiral 1 Gallery at 28 Biltmore Avenue in Asheville. All tickets $22. The movie will be “Dancing in Jaffa”. Renowned ballroom dancer, Pierre Dulaine takes his belief that dance can overcome political and cultural differences and puts it into action with one hundred and fifty 11 year old Jewish and Palestinian Israelis. What occurs is magical and transformative. Ticket price is for opening at Gallery and film. No ‘film only’ tickets available for opening night. Encore matinee on Friday April 4- see below. Movie will be shown at Fine Arts Theater in downtown Asheville.

Robin Morgan presents “Sisterhood Tweets and Blogs into the 21st Century”. Time is 7 PM in Humanities Lecture Hall at UNCA. Free. For more information, please contact Lori Horvitz, professor of literature and language, at (828) 251-6590.

The movie will be “Dancing in Jaffa”. Renowned ballroom dancer, Pierre Dulaine takes his belief that dance can overcome political and cultural differences and puts it into action with one hundred and fifty 11 year old Jewish and Palestinian Israelis. What occurs is magical and transformative. Ticket price is for opening at Gallery and film. No ‘film only’ tickets available for opening night. Encore matinee on Friday April 4 at 1 PM. Cost of ticket is $8.50. Movie will be shown at Fine Arts Theater in downtown Asheville.

Sponsors of this event are Quaker House and the National Association of Social Workers. This is a training program enabling participants to deal with potentially violent situations in new and creative ways. This is an experiential learning model that is valuable for Social Workers, Counselors, Psychologists, Clergy, Court Counselors, Teachers, School Counselors, Case Managers, Military Personnel, Law Enforcement, Substance Abuse Professionals, Physicians, Nurses and other members of the behavioral health and health care providers community. This will be held at First Christian Church in Fayetteville, NC. This is the basic workshop, and there will be further workshops for advanced training and for facilitators. Fees range from $30 to $80 for the full weekend. For more information, call Lynn at 910-323-3912.

On April 5th join us along with others from Western North Carolina to unite as a community and let the president know that we have had enough with his lack of action. Immigrant communities all over the country will lift up and let their voices be heard on this NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION, specifically toward one person that has the authority to stop deportations, our President. Every day 1,400 people are being deported in the United States and in April it’s estimated that that number will reach 2 million people, under President Obama. These are 2 million families that have been separated, 2 million children left without their parents, 2 million are 2 many immigrant hermanos that are being deported simply because they are working for a better future for their families. Join us with people from the Western North Carolina and others all over the country to let the President know that he has the authority and he has to act now!! Time is 11:30 AM to 3 PM and location is Basilica of Saint Lawrence in Asheville. For more information about the event call (828) 713-5124 or (828) 273-9000.

Join the 65 people who've already trained for this non-violent direct action! Time is 9 AM to 1 PM and the location is Asheville Friends Meeting House at 227 Edgewood Road. People can email to reserve a space at

Local food-based businesses will be providing tasty samples at this environmental fair and music performance. The Campus Bike Shop will also be on hand showing off their latest rentals and helping with any spring tune ups your two-wheeled chariot may require. Enter a recycled art contest by creatively reassembling materials from the UNC Asheville waste stream, provided by the Student Environmental Center. University staff, faculty, students and Montford neighbors are invited to roll up their sleeves to plant trees and shrubs and add mulch along Reed Creek, and create a pollinator/edible garden on the green space at street level. Please bring appropriate work clothes, boots, and if you have them, shovels and pitchforks. Work will be ongoing from 9 AM to 2 PM, and a noon lunch will be provided. The first 150 participants will receive a complimentary Greenfest 2014 t-shirt. Free shuttle service will be provided from Governors Hall to the work site through the day. Free and open to the pubic, dining hall charges may apply. Location is 525 Broadway in Asheville.

Memorial Service for Ahmad Amara will be on Sunday April 6 at 2 PM at the Reuter Center.

Join members and supporters on Sunday, April 6, 2 PM at Havanna's restaurant.
Asheville NOW is hatching big plans this spring, and we need your help to gather a quorum to approve a new board member, build a team of bold women leaders who are tired of waiting and ready to DO something, discuss new strategies for changing public opinion on key women's issues, change the conversation about women in North Carolina. To RSVP, please contact Debbie at

Please mark your calendars for the first Monday evening of every month through December 2014 for our Dinner with Progressives.  There is a lot of work to do to try and create positive change in Asheville, Buncombe County, NC and the US. The first Monday of each month at Green Sage Restaurant will be a place where we can be together to have hope for a brighter future as well as a place to commiserate along the way.  Time is 6 PM to 8 PM and location is the Green Sage Coffeehouse and Café at 1800 Hendersonville Road in south Asheville. Please contact Cheryl at 828-258-3327 for more information.

Time is 6:30 PM and location is VFP HQ at the Phil Mechanic Studios: 109 Roberts Street in Asheville. VFP Chapter 099:

“An Evening with Susan Reinhardt” will be held from 7 PM to 9 PM on April 9, 2014. Come spend an evening with columnist, author and radio personality Susan Reinhardt and enjoy her perspective of life as a "Cracked Southern Belle." This event will be at The Millroom at 66 Asheland Avenue in Asheville. Tickets are $20 each. Go to this link for tickets:

Time is 9:30 AM and location is Black Mountain Presbyterian Church library in Black Mountain. Contact Beth at for more information.

Join us Wednesday April 9th at 6 PM at the Lenoir Rhyne University Graduate Center at 36 Montford Avenue (second floor) in Asheville for a presentation on Faith-Based Perspectives on Climate Change. Join us for a discussion exploring various faith-based perspectives on climate change. Caring for Creation, WNC Green Congregations and other community groups will be sharing perspectives. Come out and join this conversation.  Socializing begins at 5:30 and the event runs from 6-7 PM. All are invited.

A four-week Dialogue on Race will be held every Thursday in April from 6:00 to 7:30 PM at the Carver Center, 101 Carver Avenue in Asheville. The four sessions lead up to the annual Stand Against Racism on the last weekend of April. Topics include: April 10 - Legacy of Slavery (presentation on slave records by Drew Reisinger, Buncombe County Register of Deeds); April 17 - Legacy of Civil Rights Pioneers (panel discussion); April 24 - We Shall Overcome (uplifting film about unlikely friendship between an embittered Ku Klux Klan leader and an outspoken black woman activist in Durham, NC). Small group discussions will follow each presentation. A potluck dinner will be held following the four sessions. Sponsors include the Chamber of Commerce, the local Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Corporation, Thomas Chapel AME Church, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley, and the YWCA of Asheville. To register or for more information, please email or call her at 419-0730.

Children First/Communities in Schools needs your help to improve the education of our children. At our “Are you Smarter than an Elementary School Student? Event” we are trying to raise $10,000 to support the programs of Children First/Communities In Schools. This includes support for our after school Learning Centers and our Advocacy work. The Learning Centers provide a safe haven afterschool program, offering academic assistance, healthy snacks, and enrichment activities for up to 60 at-risk children. They strengthen the connections among student, school, teacher, parent, and community, a key element in helping a child succeed in school and prepare for life. As you well know, our Advocacy focuses on improving public policy that benefits the children in our Learning Centers and countless others - as well as their families, communities, and schools. Together, our direct services and advocacy build a community where all children can thrive. We would love to see you at the “Are you Smarter than an Elementary School Student?” on Thursday, April 10, 6 to 8 PM, at the AB-Tech Ferguson Auditorium.  

Candidates for District Court Judge, District Attorney, and Clerk of Superior Court in the upcoming May primary will debate at the Buncombe County Judicial Complex on Friday, April 11 at 4 pm. There will be three separate debates, featuring candidates for District Court Judge, District Attorney, and Superior Court Clerk. Retired Judge Gary Cash will be the moderator, and the event will be open to the public. The debate is sponsored by the 28th Judicial District Bar, with the assistance of the Criminal Defense Bar. Time is 4 PM and location is Buncombe County Judicial Complex. Questions may be submitted by members of the Bar to the Bar Administrator, by email at Please note if your question is for the District Attorney’s race, the District Court Judge race, or the Superior Court Clerk’s race. The Bar Administrator will collect the questions, removing only the sender’s name, and send them on to Judge Cash. At the debate, candidates will be introduced by name only. Questions will be asked by the moderator, and responses limited to two minutes. A rebuttal to the original question may be offered by the opposing candidate, but this will be limited to one minute. The moderator may ask follow-up questions, and the audience may submit written follow-up questions to the moderator.

I'm Genevieve Gaea and everyone is welcome to attend this practice lecture regarding Service Dog Sensitivity and ADA Law. The lecture-- both knee slapping humourous and accurately informative-- will be given by me-- A Disabled Veteran and long time Service Dog Handler-- A1C Genevieve Gaea. It is sponsored by Vocational Rehabilitation Super Star and Job Fairy who never gives up on us handi-dandi's, Ms. Tonya Clark. It will be held at Vocational Rehabilitation office at 8 Barretta Drive, Asheville, NC. Time is 3 to 4 PM. Please keep in mind this is the free admission show and in the future you'll have to pay to enjoy the benefits of my experience and professional expertise. Miss Molly May (super service dog, heroic side-kick and loving companion who works far harder for doggy kibble and hugs than any human would) will be available for petting and kisses AFTER the lecture.  Please RSVP by calling 828-484-9389.

Please Join Us for a “DOWNTOWN DECO EVENT” from 5-7 PM at Kimmel & Associates, Art Deco 4th Floor, 25 Page Avenue, Asheville (entrance in ally between Grove Arcade and Civic Center). There will be wine, appetizers and valuable stories. RSVP to Betsy (828) 210-3444, Parking info will follow. Stand With Us Against Domestic Violence!


The MABCO Executive Committee Meeting is Monday, April 14 at 7 PM at the North Asheville, Library. Contact Ruth at for more information.

The first official meeting of the newly formed Water Cluster of the Asheville Buncombe Food Policy Council will be held at back room of Earth Fare at Westgate on Monday, April 14, from 3 to 5 PM. This will be after the ABFPC Meeting of the Whole, at which we hope to learn more about how Water fits in to the strategic priorities of the ABFPC as a whole and to start prioritizing our Aims into Key Action plans.  If you are interested in helping form policy that affects the food/water relationship, we welcome your input!

The evening will feature two presentations:  Tom Llewellyn of the REAL Cooperative has mapped Share Economy options in WNC, and Amy Hamilton helped found The Smokey Mountain Hollers Cooperative (, a trade network and fledgling local currency effort in Western North Carolina. Come to eat goodies, meet friends, and learn about these two exciting new ventures. Gather and share desserts and drinks between 6:00 and 6:30pm at the Community Action Opportunities Center lower level, 25 Gaston Street, Asheville. Gathering starts at 5:30, presentations to begin promptly at 6:30.  For more info, contact Ron at or 828-545-9114.

Anna Stearns and Roberta Madden will present a program on the current status of the Equal Rights Amendment on Tuesday, April 15 from 6:30 to 8:00 PM at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley. Their presentation is entitled "A Radical Idea: Equality for Women." All women and men are cordially invited. Anna and Robbie are leaders of RATIFY ERA-NC, a statewide organization dedicated to making the ERA part of the U.S. Constitution. Current focus is to pass pending legislation in Congress that will eliminate the 1982 deadline and require only three more of the necessary 38 (two-thirds) states to ratify the amendment. For more information contact

Join us as the largest environmental film festival in the United States comes to Western North Carolina! The Western North Carolina Alliance presents the Wild & Scenic Environmental Film Festival, on tour in Asheville during the week leading up to Earth Day! It is a festival by activists and for activists. For thirty years, WNCA has been a building a community to protect and restore the forests and rivers of our home. The Wild & Scenic Film Festival puts our work–and yours–into the broader environmental and social context, and serves to remind us that we’re participants in a global movement for a more wild and scenic world. Time is 6 PM to 9 PM and location is Asheville Community Theatre at 35 E. Walnut Street in Asheville. Buy tickets here:

As part of the YWCA Stand Against Racism, Mission Hospital and UNC Asheville will host Wise's talk. Tim Wise, whom scholar and philosopher Cornel West calls, "A vanilla brother in the tradition of (abolitionist) John Brown," is among the nation's most prominent antiracist essayists and educators. This will be at 6:30 PM at the Humanities Lecture Hall at UNCA.

Join us Wednesday April 16th at 6 PM at the Green Sage Coffeehouse and Café in downtown Asheville for a presentation on Al Gore’s famous multimedia Climate Slideshow. The presentation is a comprehensive overview and discussion of climate change around the globe with up-to-date photos and information. Socializing starts at 5:30 PM and the presentation starts at 6 PM.

The Key Center for Community Citizenship & Service-Learning and The Department of Foreign Languages will host the documentary about 1961 Cuba when 250,000 volunteers taught 700,000 people how to read and write. 100,000 of the teachers were under 18 years old. Over half were women. Guest Speaker Sila Reyna from La Vallita, Cuba, will share her personal experiences as a maestra following this 30 minute documentary called “Maestra”. Time is 6 PM and location is Highsmith Student Union, Room 104, at UNCA.

“A Bottle in the Gaza Sea” will be shown at the Fine Arts Theater in downtown Asheville. Tal is a 17-year-old French woman who has settled in Jerusalem with her family. She writes a letter expressing her refusal to accept that only hatred can reign between Israelis and Palestinians. She slips the letter into a bottle, and her brother throws it into the sea near Gaza, where he is carrying out his military service. A few weeks later, Tal receives an e-mail response from a mysterious “Gazaman,” a young Palestinian named Naïm. And thus begins a turbulent but tender long-distance friendship between two young people that are separated by a history they are trying both to understand and change. All tickets $8.50. Time is 7 PM.

“A Bottle in the Gaza Sea” will be shown at the Fine Arts Theater in downtown Asheville. Tal is a 17-year-old French woman who has settled in Jerusalem with her family. She writes a letter expressing her refusal to accept that only hatred can reign between Israelis and Palestinians. She slips the letter into a bottle, and her brother throws it into the sea near Gaza, where he is carrying out his military service. A few weeks later, Tal receives an e-mail response from a mysterious “Gazaman,” a young Palestinian named Naïm. And thus begins a turbulent but tender long-distance friendship between two young people that are separated by a history they are trying both to understand and change. All tickets $8.50. Time is 1 PM.

Noon to 10 PM - Downtown Asheville. Local Food, Music, Beer and environmental groups. Lots for kids to do!

The Global Climate Convergence: People Planet Peace Over Profit.

Time is 9:30 AM and location is Black Mountain Presbyterian Church library in Black Mountain. Contact Beth at for more information.

Join us Wednesday April 23rd at 6 PM at the Green Sage Coffeehouse and Café in Asheville for a celebration of our 500th edition of Asheville Green Drinks! Unlike 700 other cities that host green drinks, Asheville is proud to be the only weekly green drinks event in the world. Our event will honor the original Asheville founders and Partners in Education and other community members who have diligently produced 500 educational programs that have drawn crowds from far and wide. Join us for hor’s dourves and refreshments.

“Alhelm:  MLK Jr. in Palestine” film showing, with director present, organized by Western Carolinians for Peace and Justice in the Middle East. Location and time to be determined.

This year "The Stand" will take place on Friday, April 25 with many events happening around that time. This is a great way to host an event of any size either in your own individual office, school, house of worship, book group, or family. To learn more and to register visit:

This will be from 8 AM to 1 PM at the City Public Works Parking Lot at 161 Charlotte Street in Asheville.

This will be from 8 AM to 11 AM and will be held in the public parking lot between Sun Trust Bank (on Rt 9) and the RR tracks. This is sponsored by Black Mountain Recreation and Parks.

Please join us and other practitioners, researchers, and staff from local, state, and federal agencies to share information about climate-related tools, resources, experiences, and activities in the Carolinas. This will be a very interactive conference geared towards networking and exchange among stakeholders and decision makers throughout the region. This will be at the Hilton Charlotte University Place at 8629 JM Keynes Drive in Charlotte.  More information at

The annual Child Watch Tour will be Tuesday, May 13th, 8:00 AM - 1:00 PM and we will once again offer a "lunch-only" option for those unable to join us for the half day. We hope you'll join us to explore why Transportation Matters for Kids. Did you know that a majority of Asheville's bus riders are non-elective - meaning the bus is their primary source of transportation? That Asheville's busses don't run on Sundays? What does that mean for the many families that rely on public transportation to visit the grocery store, take a child to a doctor, or get to work or school? Child Watch Tour participants will better understand the transportation challenges faced by many low-wage working parents as they try to meet their families' basic needs. We will explore the individual stories and the policy decisions that define our public transportation systems in Buncombe County. Full tour is $15 and lunch only is $10. Some scholarships are available. Go here to register:

Hours are 2 PM to 8 PM and location is Cleveland Park (East Washington Street & Cleveland Park Drive) in Greenville SC.

This will be held at UNCA. More information to follow.


Veterans for Peace have a weekly vigil at 5 PM at Pack Square, Vance Monument

Haywood Peace Vigilers have a weekly vigil at 4 PM at Haywood County Courthouse in Waynesville

Asheville Homeless Network meeting at 2 PM at Firestorm Cafe
Youth Outright Poetry Night at United Church of Christ in Asheville at 5 PM

Women in Black have a weekly vigil at noon at the City Hall in Hendersonville
Women in Black have a monthly vigil at 5 PM at Vance Monument in Asheville (first Friday only)

Transylvanians for Peace and WNC Physicians for Social Responsibility have a weekly vigil at noon in front of the courthouse in Brevard
Third Saturdays – Asheville’s Green Grannies invites the public to “sing for the climate” at Vance Monument at 5 PM.



The last chapter in the fight over the Keystone XL pipeline is about to be written. On April 27th we will march with tens of thousands of others from around our two nations (US and Canada) to demand that President Obama reject this pipeline once and for all. Locally, our own Elly Richards is one of several who have stepped forward to organize buses from our area up to DC and back. The following is from Elly:

“I am putting out the word to collect the names of folks who want to go up to D.C. in a bus for the April 27th rally. One person suggested that maybe it could be done without an overnight in D.C. instead of the night before. Please indicate if you would prefer going up Saturday spending the night or very early Sunday morning. When I have a general count of how many people are interested in busing up to D.C., I'll contact the bus companies and check on prices.”

So if you're interested, let Elly know at And spread the word! It takes more than just a few days to get stuff set up with a bus company, so in order to make this happen we have to get folks signed up soon. I hope you can make it. It's difficult to block out the time for these kind of events, but they do make a difference. We've come a long way on the KXL and now it's time to shut it down once and for all. Other battles over fossil fuels await and need our attention.

April 11 is the last day to register to vote in the May 6, 2014 Primary Election in North Carolina!
Do two things:

1) follow this link to ensure that your voter registration details are correct.
1a) Use this form to correct any errors before April 11th.

2) Use this form to register someone else to vote:



It's been said that there are three kinds of people in the world:

Those who make things happen.
Those who watch things happen.
Those who wonder what happened.

If you're planning on attending the annual convention this July 23 - 27 you certainly won't be among those who wondered what happened. The question is, will you be among those who helped make it happen?

We're seeking volunteers to help out in roles such as transportation, hospitality, administration and logistics to help make this the best convention possible. The more volunteers we have, the less each of us will need to do and the more flexible we'll be able to be in matching each volunteer with the kind of work they're most interested in doing. Once assigned, each volunteer will be provided with an orientation sheet in advance of the convention explaining the nature and schedule of their assignment. Volunteers will be asked to attend an orientation session the Tuesday afternoon/evening before the convention begins on Wednesday.

If interested, please email me, Gerry Werhan (, Host Chapter Volunteer Coordinator. Please put "VFP CONVENTION VOLUNTEER" in the subject line, and provide your name, mobile phone number, group affiliation and assignment preference, if any. Feel free to ask any questions or raise any concerns you may have.

I'll add you to our roster and you will be contacted as our plans for the convention and volunteer assignments firm up in the months ahead.


Thanks... and Peace



Three years ago, on March 17th, 2011, a U.S. drone strike hit the small town of Datta Khel in Pakistan killing a large number of tribal elders devastating the people of Datta Khel, as well as the surrounding communities.

Since this strike, one of the largest in history, the American government has yet to even acknowledge that the strike even occurred, or provide any other details on the incident.

When civilian deaths have been alleged, as they have been in Datta Khel, the public has a right to understand the merit of these allegations, and the government has a responsibility to tell us the truth.

That's why I signed a petition to President Barack Obama, which says:

"Investigate and release information regarding the March 17, 2011 Datta Khel drone strike that killed more than 40 people."

Will you sign the petition too? Click here to add your name:


Saturday, March 29, 2014

35 Countries Where the U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists

26. Nicaragua
Anastasio Somosa ruled Nicaragua as his personal fiefdom for 43 years with unconditional U.S. support, as his National Guard committed every crime imaginable from massacres and torture to extortion and rape with complete impunity. After he was finally overthrown by the Sandinista Revolution in 1979, the CIA recruited, trained and supported "contra" mercenaries to invade Nicaragua and conduct terrorism to destabilize the country. In 1986, the International Court of Justice found the United States guilty of aggression against Nicaragua for deploying the contras and mining Nicaraguan ports. The court ordered the U.S. to cease its aggression and pay war reparations to Nicaragua, but they have never been paid. The U.S. response was to declare that it would no longer recognize the binding jurisdiction of the ICJ, effectively setting itself beyond the rule of international law.

27.Pakistan; 28.Saudi Arabia; 29. Turkey
After reading my last AlterNet piece on the failed war on terror, former CIA and State Department terrorism expert Larry Johnson told me, "The main problem with respect to assessing the terrorist threat is to accurately define the state sponsorship. The biggest culprits today, in contrast to 20 years ago, are Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. Iran, despite the right-wing/neocon ravings, is not that active in encouraging and/or facilitating terrorism." In the past 12 years, U.S. military aid to Pakistan has totaled $18.6 billion. The U.S. has just negotiated the largest arms deal in history with Saudi Arabia. And Turkey is a long-standing member of NATO. All three major state sponsors of terrorism in the world today are U.S. allies.       

30. Panama
U.S. drug enforcement officials wanted to arrest Manuel Noriega in 1971, when he was the chief of military intelligence in Panama. They had enough evidence to convict him of drug trafficking, but he was also a long-time agent and informer for the CIA, so like other drug-dealing CIA agents from Marseille to Macao, he was untouchable. He was temporarily cut loose during the Carter administration but otherwise kept collecting at least $100,000 per year from the U.S. Treasury. As he rose to be the de facto ruler of Panama, he became even more valuable to the CIA, reporting on meetings with Fidel Castro and Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua and supporting U.S. covert wars in Central America. Noriega probably quit drug trafficking in about 1985, well before the U.S. indicted him for it in 1988. The indictment was a pretext for the U.S. invasion of Panama in 1989, whose main purpose was to give the U.S. greater control over Panama, at the expense of at least 2,000 lives.

31. The Philippines
Since the U.S. launched its so-called war on terror in 2001, a task force of 500 US JSOC forces has conducted covert operations in the southern Philippines. Now, under Obama's "pivot to Asia," U.S. military aid to the Philippines is increasing, from $12 million in 2011 to $50 million this year. But Filippino human rights activists report that the increased aid coincides with increased military death squad operations against civilians. The past three years have seen at least 158 people killed by death squads.

32. Syria
When President Obama approved flying weapons and militiamen from Libya to the "Free Syrian Army" base in Turkey in unmarked NATO planes in late 2011, he was calculating that the U.S. and its allies could replicate the "successful" overthrow of the Libyan government. Everyone involved understood that Syria would be a longer and bloodier conflict, but they gambled that the end result would be the same, even though 55% of Syrians told pollsters they still supported Assad. A few months later, Western leaders undermined Kofi Annan's peace plan with their "Plan B," "Friends of Syria." This was not an alternative peace plan, but a commitment to escalation, offering guaranteed support, money and weapons to the jihadis in Syria to make sure they ignored the Annan peace plan and kept fighting. That move sealed the fate of millions of Syrians. Over the past two years Qatar has spent $3 billion and flown in planeloads of weapons, Saudi Arabia has shipped weapons from Croatia, and Western and Arab royalist special forces have trained thousands of increasingly radicalized fundamentalist jihadis, now allied with al-Qaeda. The Geneva II talks were a half-hearted effort to revive the 2012 Annan peace plan, but Western insistence that a "political transition" means the immediate resignation of Assad reveals that Western leaders still value regime change more than peace. To paraphrase Phyllis Bennis, the U.S. and its allies are still willing to fight to the last Syrian.

The full story is at this website.

Friday, March 28, 2014

35 Countries Where the U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists

21. Korea
When U.S. forces arrived in Korea in 1945, they were greeted by officials of the Korean People's Republic (KPR), formed by resistance groups which had disarmed surrendering Japanese forces and begun to establish law and order throughout Korea. General Hodge had them thrown out of his office and placed the southern half of Korea under U.S. military occupation. By contrast, Russian forces in the North recognized the KPR, leading to the long-term division of Korea. The U.S. flew in Syngman Rhee, a conservative Korean exile, and installed him as President of South Korea in 1948. Rhee became a dictator on an anti-communist crusade, arresting and torturing suspected communists, brutally putting down rebellions, killing 100,000 people and vowing to take over North Korea. He was at least partly responsible for the outbreak of the Korean War and for the allied decision to invade North Korea once South Korea had been recaptured. He was finally forced to resign by mass student protests in 1960.

22. Laos
The CIA began providing air support to French forces in Laos in 1950, and remained involved there for 25 years. The CIA engineered at least three coups between 1958 and 1960 to keep the growing leftist Pathet Lao out of government. It worked with right-wing Laotian drug lords like General Phoumi Nosavan, transporting opium between Burma, Laos and Vietnam and protecting his monopoly on the opium trade in Laos. In 1962, the CIA recruited a clandestine mercenary army of 30,000 veterans of previous guerrilla wars from Thailand, Korea, Vietnam and the Philippines to fight the Pathet Lao. As large numbers of American GIs in Vietnam got hooked on heroin, the CIA's Air America transported opium from Hmong territory in the Plain of Jars to General Vang Pao's heroin labs in Long Tieng and Vientiane for shipment to Vietnam. When the CIA failed to defeat the Pathet Lao, the U.S. bombed Laos almost as heavily as Cambodia, with 2 million tons of bombs.

23. Libya
NATO's war on Libya epitomized President Obama's "disguised, quiet, media-free" approach to war. NATO's bombing campaign was fraudulently justified to the UN Security Council as an effort to protect civilians, and the instrumental role of Western and other foreign special forces on the ground was well-disguised, even when Qatari special forces (including ex-ISI Pakistani mercenaries) led the final assault on the Bab Al-Aziziya HQ in Tripoli. NATO conducted 7,700 air strikes, 30,000 -100,000 people were killed, loyalist towns were bombed to rubble and ethnically cleansed, and the country is in chaos as Western-trained and -armed Islamist militias seize territory and oil facilities and vie for power. The Misrata militia, trained and armed by Western special forces, is one of the most violent and powerful. As I write this, protesters have just stormed the Congress building in Tripoli for the fourth or fifth time in recent months, and two elected Representatives have been shot and wounded as they fled.
24. Mexico
The death toll in Mexico's drug wars recently passed 100,000. The most violent of the drug cartels is Los Zetas.  U.S. officials call the Zetas "the most technologically advanced, sophisticated and dangerous drug cartel operating in Mexico." The Zetas cartel was formed by Mexican security forces trained by U.S. special forces at the School of the Americas in Fort Benning, Georgia, and at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

25. Myanmar
After the Chinese Revolution, Kuomintang generals moved into northern Burma and became powerful drug lords, with Thai military protection, financing from Taiwan and air transport and logistical support from the CIA. Burma's opium production grew from 18 tons in 1958 to 600 tons in 1970. The CIA maintained these forces as a bulwark against communist China but they transformed the "golden triangle" into the world's largest opium producer. Most of the opium was shipped by mule trains into Thailand where other CIA allies shipped it to heroin labs in Hong Kong and Malaysia. The trade shifted around 1970 as CIA partner General Vang Pao set up new labs in Laos to provide heroin to GIs in Vietnam.

The full story is at this website.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

35 Countries Where the U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists

16. Honduras
The 2009 coup in Honduras has led to severe repression and death squad murders of political opponents, union organizers and journalists. At the time of the coup, U.S. officials denied any role in the coup and used semantics to avoid cutting off U.S. military aid as required under U.S. law. But two Wikileaks cables revealed that the U.S. Embassy was the main power broker in managing the aftermath of the coup and forming a government that is now repressing and murdering its people.

17. Indonesia
In 1965, General Suharto seized effective power from President Sukarno on the pretext of combating a failed coup and unleashed an orgy of mass murder that killed at least half a million people. U.S. diplomats later admitted providing lists of 5,000 Communist Party members to be killed. Political officer Robert Martens said, "It really was a big help to the army. They probably killed a lot of people, and I probably have a lot of blood on my hands, but that's not all bad. There's a time when you have to strike hard at a decisive moment."

18. Iran
Iran may be the most instructive case of a CIA coup that caused endless long-term problems for the United States. In 1953, the CIA and the U.K.'s MI6 overthrew the popular, elected government of Mohammed Mossadegh. Iran had nationalized its oil industry by a unanimous vote of parliament, ending a BP monopoly that only paid Iran a 16% royalty on its oil. For two years, Iran resisted a British naval blockade and international economic sanctions. After President Eisenhower took office in 1953, the CIA agreed to a British request to intervene. After the initial coup failed and the Shah and his family fled to Italy, the CIA paid millions of dollars to bribe military officers and pay gangsters to unleash violence in the streets of Tehran. Mossadegh was finally removed and the Shah returned to rule as a brutal Western puppet until the Iranian Revolution in 1979.

19. Israel
Just as the U.S. uses its economic and military power, its sophisticated propaganda system and its position as a Permanent Member of the UN Security Council to violate international law with impunity, it also uses the same tools to shield its ally Israel from accountability for international crimes.  Since 1966, the U.S. has used its Security Council veto 83 times, more than the other four Permanent Members combined, and 42 of those vetoes have been on resolutions related to Israel and/or Palestine. Just last week, Amnesty International published a report that, "Israeli forces have displayed a callous disregard for human life by killing dozens of Palestinian civilians, including children, in the occupied West Bank over the past three years with near total impunity." Richard Falk, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Occupied Territories condemned the 2008 assault on Gaza as a "massive violation of international law," adding that nations like the U.S. "that have supplied weapons and supported the siege are complicit in the crimes." The Leahy Law requires the U.S. to cut off military aid to forces that violate human rights, but it has never been enforced against Israel. Israel continues to build settlements in occupied territory in violation of the 4th Geneva Convention, making it harder to comply with Security Council resolutions that require it to withdraw from occupied territory. But Israel remains beyond the rule of law, shielded from accountability by its powerful patron, the United States.   

20. Iraq
In 1958, after the British-backed monarchy was overthrown by General Abdul Qasim, the CIA hired a 22-year-old Iraqi named Saddam Hussein to assassinate the new president. Hussein and his gang botched the job and he fled to Lebanon, wounded in the leg by one of his companions. The CIA rented him an apartment in Beirut and then moved him to Cairo, where he was paid as an agent of Egyptian intelligence and was a frequent visitor at the U.S. Embassy. Qasim was killed in a CIA-backed Baathist coup in 1963, and as in Guatemala and Indonesia, the CIA gave the new government a list of at least 4,000 communists to be killed. But, once in power, the Baathist revolutionary government was no Western puppet, and it nationalized Iraq's oil industry, adopted an Arab nationalist foreign policy and built the best education and health systems in the Arab world. In 1979, Saddam Hussein became president, conducted purges of political opponents and launched a disastrous war against Iran. The U.S. DIA provided satellite intelligence to target chemical weapons that the West helped him to produce, and Donald Rumsfeld and other U.S. officials welcomed him as an ally against Iran. Only after Iraq invaded Kuwait and Hussein became more useful as an enemy did U.S. propaganda brand him as "a new Hitler." After the U.S. invaded Iraq on false pretenses in 2003, the CIA recruited 27 brigades of "Special Police," merging the most brutal of Saddam Hussein's security forces with the Iranian-trained Badr militia to form death squads that murdered tens of thousands of mostly Sunni Arab men and boys in Baghdad and elsewhere in a reign of terror that continues to this day. 

The full story is at this website.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

35 Countries Where the U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists

11. France
In France, Italy, Greece, Indochina, Indonesia, Korea and the Philippines at the end of World War II, advancing allied forces found that communist resistance forces had gained effective control of large areas or even entire countries as German and Japanese forces withdrew or surrendered.  In Marseille, the CGT communist trade union controlled the docks that were critical to trade with the U.S. and the Marshall plan. The OSS had worked with the U.S.-Sicilian mafia and Corsican gangsters during the war. So after the OSS merged into the new CIA after the war, it used its contacts to restore Corsican gangsters to power in Marseille, to break dock strikes and CGT control of the docks. It protected the Corsicans as they set up heroin labs and began shipping heroin to New York, where the American-Sicilian mafia also flourished under CIA protection. Ironically, supply disruptions due to the war and the Chinese Revolution had reduced the number of heroin addicts in the U.S. to 20,000 by 1945 and heroin addiction could have been virtually eliminated, but the CIA's infamous French Connection instead brought a new wave of heroin addiction, organized crime and drug-related violence to New York and other American cities.

12. Ghana
There seem to be no inspiring national leaders in Africa these days. But that may be America's fault. In the 1950s and 1960s, there was a rising star in Ghana: Kwame Nkrumah. He was Prime Minister under British rule from 1952 to 1960, when Ghana became independent and he became president. He was a socialist, a pan-African and an anti-imperialist, and, in 1965, he wrote a book called Neo-Colonialism: The Last Stage of Imperialism. Nkrumah was overthrown in a CIA coup in 1966. The CIA denied involvement at the time, but the British press later reported that 40 CIA officers operated out of the U.S. Embassy "distributing largesse among President Nkrumah's secret adversaries," and that their work "was fully rewarded." Former CIA officer John Stockwell revealed more about the CIA's decisive role in the coup in his book In Search of Enemies.

13. Greece
When British forces landed in Greece in October 1944, they found the country under the effective control of ELAS-EAM, the leftist partisan group formed by the Greek Communist Party in 1941 after the Italian and German invasion. ELAS-EAM welcomed the British forces, but the British refused any accommodation with them and installed a government that included royalists and Nazi collaborators. When ELAS-EAM held a huge demonstration in Athens, police opened fire and killed 28 people. The British recruited members of the Nazi-trained Security Battalions to hunt down and arrest ELAS members, who once again took up arms as a resistance movement.  In 1947, with a civil war raging, the bankrupt British asked the U.S. to take over their role in occupied Greece. The U.S. role in supporting an incompetent fascist government in Greece was enshrined in the "Truman Doctrine," seen by many historians as the beginning of the Cold War. ELAS-EAM fighters laid down their arms in 1949 after Yugoslavia withdrew its support, and 100,000 were either executed, exiled or jailed. The liberal Prime Minister Georgios Papandreou was overthrown in a CIA-backed coup in 1967, leading to seven more years of military rule. His son Andreas was elected as Greece's first "socialist" president in 1981, but many ELAS-EAM members jailed in the 1940s were never freed and died in prison.

14. Guatemala
After its first operation to overthrow a foreign government in Iran in 1953, the CIA launched a more elaborate operation to remove the elected liberal government of Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala in 1954. The CIA recruited and trained a small army of mercenaries under Guatemalan exile Castillo Armas to invade Guatemala, with 30 unmarked U.S. planes providing air support. U.S. Ambassador Peurifoy prepared a list of Guatemalans to be executed, and Armas was installed as president. The reign of terror that followed led to 40 years of civil war, in which at least 200,000 were killed, most of them indigenous people. The climax of the war was the campaign of genocide in Ixil by President Rios Montt, for which he was sentenced to life in prison in 2013, until Guatemala's Supreme Court rescued him on a technicality. A new trial is scheduled for 2015. Declassified CIA documents reveal that the Reagan administration was well aware of the indiscriminate and genocidal nature of Guatemalan military operations when it approved new military aid in 1981, including military vehicles, spare parts for helicopters and U.S. military advisers. The CIA documents detail the massacre and destruction of entire villages, and conclude, "The well documented belief by the army that the entire Ixil Indian population is pro-EGP (Guerrilla Army of the Poor) has created a situation in which the army can be expected to give no quarter to combatants and non-combatants alike."

15. Haiti
Almost 200 years after the slave rebellion that created the nation of Haiti and defeated Napoleon's armies, the long-suffering people of Haiti finally elected a truly democratic government led by Father Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 1991. But President Aristide was overthrown in a U.S.-backed military coup after eight months in office, and the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) recruited a paramilitary force called FRAPH to target and destroy Aristide's Lavalas movement in Haiti. The CIA put FRAPH's leader Emmanuel "Toto" Constant on its payroll and shipped in weapons from Florida. When President Clinton sent a U.S. occupation force to restore Aristide to office in 1994, FRAPH members detained by U.S. forces were freed on orders from Washington, and the CIA maintained FRAPH as a criminal gang to undermine Aristide and Lavalas. After Aristide was elected president a second time in 2000, a force of 200 U.S. special forces trained 600 former FRAPH members and others in the Dominican Republic to prepare for a second coup. In 2004, they launched a campaign of violence to destabilize Haiti, which provided the pretext for U.S. forces to land in Haiti and remove Aristide from office.

The full story is at this website.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

35 Countries Where the U.S. Has Supported Fascists, Drug Lords and Terrorists

6. Chile
When Salvador Allende became President in 1970, President Nixon promised to"make the economy scream" in Chile. The U.S., Chile's largest trading partner, cut off trade to cause shortages and economic chaos. The CIA and State Department had conducted sophisticated propaganda operations in Chile for a decade, funding conservative politicians, parties, unions, student groups and all forms of media, while expanding ties with the military. After General Pinochet seized power, the CIA kept Chilean officials on its payroll and worked closely with Chile's DINA intelligence agency as the military government killed thousands of people and jailed and tortured tens of thousands more. Meanwhile, the "Chicago Boys," over 100 Chilean students sent by a State Department program to study under Milton Friedman at the University of Chicago, launched a radical program of privatization, deregulation and neoliberal policies that kept the economy screaming for most Chileans throughout Pinochet's 16-year military dictatorship.
7. China
By the end of 1945, 100,000 U.S. troops were fighting alongside Chinese Kuomintang (and Japanese) forces in Communist-held areas of northern China. Chiang Kai-Shek and the Kuomintang may have been the most corrupt of all U.S. allies. A steady stream of U.S. advisers in China warned that U.S. aid was being stolen by Chiang and his cronies, some of it even sold to the Japanese, but the U.S. commitment to Chiang continued throughout the war, his defeat by the Communists and his rule of Taiwan. Secretary of State Dulles' brinksmanship on behalf of Chiang twice led the U.S. to the brink of nuclear war with China on his behalf in 1955 and 1958 over Matsu and Qemoy, two small islands off the coast of China.

8. Colombia
When U.S. special forces and the Drug Enforcement Administration aided Colombian forces to track down and kill drug lord Pablo Escobar, they worked with a vigilante group called Los Pepes. In 1997, Diego Murillo-Bejarano and other Los Pepes' leaders co-founded the AUC (United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia) which was responsible for 75% of violent civilian deaths in Colombia over the next 10 years.

9. Cuba
The United States supported the Batista dictatorship as it created the repressive conditions that led to the Cuban Revolution, killing up to 20,000 of its own people. Former U.S. Ambassador Earl Smith testified to Congress that, "the U.S. was so overwhelmingly influential in Cuba that the American Ambassador was the second most important man, sometimes even more important than the Cuban president." After the revolution, the CIA launched a long campaign of terrorism against Cuba, training Cuban exiles in Florida, Central America and the Dominican Republic to commit assassinations and sabotage in Cuba.  CIA-backed operations against Cuba included the attempted invasion at the Bay of Pigs, in which 100 Cuban exiles and four Americans were killed; several attempted assassinations of Fidel Castro and successful assassinations of other officials; several bombing raids in 1960 (three Americans killed and two captured) and terrorist bombings targeting tourists as recently as 1997; the apparent bombing of a French ship in Havana harbor (at least 75 killed); a biological swine flu attack that killed half a million pigs; and the terrorist bombing of a Cuban airliner (78 killed) planned by Luis Posada Carriles and Orlando Bosch, who remain free in America despite the U.S. pretense of waging a war against terrorism. Bosch was granted a presidential pardon by the first President Bush.

10. El Salvador
The civil war that swept El Salvador in the 1980s was a popular uprising against a government that ruled with the utmost brutality.  At least 70,000 people were killed and thousands more were disappeared. The UN Truth Commission set up after the war found that 95% of the dead were killed by government forces and death squads, and only 5% by FLMN guerrillas. The government forces responsible for this one-sided slaughter were almost entirely established, trained, armed and supervised by the CIA, U.S. special forces and the U.S. School of the Americas. The UN Truth Commission found that the units guilty of the worst atrocities, like the Atlacatl Battalion which conducted the infamous El Mozote massacre, were precisely the ones most closely supervised by American advisers. The American role in this campaign of state terrorism is now hailed by senior U.S. military officers as a model for "counter-insurgency" in Colombia and elsewhere as the U.S. war on terror spreads its violence and chaos across the world.

The full story is at this website.