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The power to stop illegal U.S. actions in Yemen war


There is an important resolution in the Senate that is expected to be voted on in the coming days. This resolution, S.J. Res. 54, directs the removal of U.S. Armed Forces from hostilities in the Republic of Yemen that have not been authorized by Congress. Introduced by Sen. Bernie Sanders and bipartisan co-sponsors, this resolution is forcing a conversation on the legality of declaring war.

The resolution invokes the War Powers Resolution, the 1973 law that checks the president's power to take the U.S. to war without Congressional approval. 

Congress never approved the U.S. going to war in Yemen. Yet for three years, the U.S. has supported one side of this war with weapons, military intelligence, and midair refueling for jets, which go on to drop bombs on civilians in Yemen, destroying hospitals, schools, and farms.

You have no doubt read about or seen the devastation this violence is wreaking on Yemen. The largest, fastest growing cholera crisis ever documented. The nearly eight million people facing starvation. The more than 10,000 Yemenis killed. (Watch this video for a personal story.)

In Bellingham, we often read about overseas crises and express hopelessness that there's nothing we can do. But we are the ones funding this human rights crisis. And neither of our senators have co-sponsored this resolution. Have they heard from you yet?

As residents of Washington state, we need to call them about this now. Reach their local offices at these phone numbers, and demand their support for S.J. Res. 54:

Sen. Patty Murray: (425) 259-6515
Sen. Maria Cantwell: (425) 303-0114 

Use your voice! 

With respect,

Civic Engagement & Letter-Writing Workshop

Part of WWU's Alternative Spring Break; Open to the public

During this workshop on Tuesday, March 27, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., we will discuss participating in local democracy, including how to reach elected representatives and the news media, and why it’s important to be civically engaged where you live.

You will have the chance to check on your voter registration, find out who represents you at every level of government, research and track current legislation, and write a letter about a current issue that matters to you.

Some computers will be available, but please bring a laptop if you have one.

Volunteer training

We will hold the next volunteer orientation for Alternatives to Military Service in April. Email if you want to take part, and we will keep you in the loop. Thank you!
6-7:30 p.m., March 15
"5 Broken Cameras" screening with WWU SUPER
Miller Hall room 231 at WWU

4-5 p.m., March 16
Peace Vigil
Corner of Magnolia and Cornwall

6 p.m., March 16
Veterans for Peace Monthly Chapter Meeting
Co-op Connections Building (405 E. Holly Street, Room 103)

5:30 p.m., March 18
Middle East Prayer Vigil
First Christian Church/Disciples of Christ (495 East Bakerview Road)

11:30 a.m-1:30 p.m.., March 19
Dignity Vigil
City Hall (210 Lottie Street)

6-8 p.m., March 21
What's Up Doc? We're Dying to Talk
St. Luke’s Health Education Center (3333 Squalicum Parkway)

7-8:30 p.m., March 21
Black Lives Matter Monthly Meeting
First Congregational Church (2401 Cornwall Avenue)

10 a.m., March 24
March for Our Lives
City Hall (210 Lottie Street)

11 a.m.-1 p.m., March 27
Civic Engagement & Letter-Writing Workshop
WPJC (1220 Bay Street)

4-7 p.m., April 17
Global Day of Action on Military Spending
WPJC (1220 Bay Street)

5:30-7 p.m., April 19
Workshop: Working Toward Racial Equity
WPJC (1220 Bay Street)
March for Our Lives in Bellingham on March 24th, 10 a.m., City Hall in Bellingham at 210 Lottie Street.
Nuclear Weapons, Race, and Justice in the Trump Era

The threat of nuclear catastrophe has grown under the current Administration, and we're now on a path to spend $1.7 trillion over the next 30 years rebuilding our entire nuclear weapons arsenal. At the same time, desperately needed social programs are being cut, and communities of color and low-income communities are hurt the most. Racial justice and nuclear weapons issues have been closely tied since the beginning of the nuclear era, but their connections are often lost.
Join us for an important discussion with Dr. Vincent Intondi, author of "African Americans Against the Bomb," on the intersection of U.S. nuclear weapons policy and the fight for racial equity.

Nuclear Weapons, Race, and Justice in the Trump Era
Monday, April 2, 6-7:30 p.m., Doors at 5:45 p.m.
University of Washington, Bagley hall, Room 131, Seattle, WA 98195
This discussion will explore how African American activists have been involved in the fight against nuclear weapons, how racism, colonialism, and inequity have shaped our nuclear policy, and how this is playing out under our current Administration. You will also learn what's happening locally, and how you can take action.
This event is sponsored by WPSR, Health Alliance International, Ploughshares Fund, the University of Washington Global Health Department, and Town Hall is a promotional partner.
image created by Monica Trinidad

From the American Friends Service Committee:

Webinar: Who's watching? Resisting surveillance

TODAY from 5:30-7 p.m. Pacific
Online webinar

Learn how communities are being watched by the government in the name of national security. Learn about the history of surveillance, what surveillance programs the government is currently using, ways that targeted communities are resisting, and how you can help. 

Since 9/11, the framework of the "war on terror" has been used as a justification for widespread surveillance of the Muslim community, which is profiled for everyday activities such as going to the mosque, political activity, or even mundane things like having a beard. The Black Lives Matter movement is vigorously surveilled, and have been described by the FBI as "Black Identity Extremists," and surveillance in the name of national security has been used systemically to target and oppress people of color and activists.

From the incantation of "See something, say something" in airports and other public spaces to the FBI's video games aimed at young people, there has been an ever deeper penetration of surveillance practices in every day life.

Learning how the government is surveilling targeted communities and how to resist is critical to working for justice in these times.  As AFSC staff member Dina El-Rifai observes, "This allows the government to target anyone working toward racial and religious justice and equality and to employ violent tactics against them. That reality should alarm all of us, not just Muslims."

Register here:

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