Jeremy Scahill, award-winning author and journalist, spoke on America’s Covert Wars, the expansion of US covert actions from Bush to Obama, while making the case that, “we have an offensive war machine. We almost have never taken a defensive action. We are in now in the business of preemptive war,” Scahill thanked the hundreds of Brooklynites who were inside on such a beautiful Saturday and “…who are constantly representing Brooklyn in a very strong way and pushing a peace agenda. It’s very much an uphill battle, but if it’s to be won it’s in small communities across this country, in groups like this that gather together and refuse to be a part of a war machine that is increasingly being unleashed in countries away from media attention and anything even vaguely resembling effective congressional oversight.”
Captain Paul K. Chappell, Peace Leadership Director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and veteran of the Iraq War, spoke on Why Peace is Possible and How We Can Achieve It. Emphasizing what the peace movement can learn from the military, Capt. Chappell said, “We must wage peace with the same strategic thinks as we wage war. We must have sufficient imagination and courage to translate the universal wish for peace, which is rapidly becoming a universal necessity into actuality.”
Workshops at the Brooklyn Peace Fair covered a variety of topics, including discussions about the economy, budget cuts, the military, war, stop and frisk tactics, hip hop as a tool, conflict resolution, Palestine, building local peace and justice movements, climate change, Cuba, free trade agreements and poetry. Informational tables included peace, social justice, activist, wellness and community organizations. Check out the full offerings in the enclosed program.
The Brooklyn Peace Fair featured music and performances by SpiritChild, Dave Lippman, The Occuponics, Raging Grannies, Laugh John Laugh, Dennis Gronim, Anya Skidan, Lone Wolf Tribe, Occupy the Empire Tour, as well as other musicians and spoken word performances for all ages. There was music, exhibits, and activities for children throughout the day, including a performance of The Lorax, designing and pressing your own button and poster making and a Peace Tree forest.
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