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August 23, 2006

2006.08.23: Up to 2,500 discharged Marines face recall to duty

Filed under: Antiwar,Uncategorized — nyclaw01 @ 12:21 pm
Tags:

From: Susan Morris
Sent: Wednesday, August 23, 2006 1:35 PM
To: Susan Morris
Subject: Up to 2,500 discharged Marines face recall to duty
http://www.boston.com/news/world/middleeast/articles/2006/08/23/up_to_2500_discharged_marines_face_recall_to_duty/
Up to 2,500 discharged Marines face recall to duty
Move is Corps’ first since Iraq invasion
By Bryan Bender, Globe Staff | August 23, 2006

WASHINGTON — Up to 2,500 Marines will be recalled to active duty to make up for a critical shortage of specialists to serve in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Marine Corps said yesterday, the first time since the invasion of Iraq three years ago that Marine commanders have taken the extraordinary step of drafting back into uniform those who have left the ranks.

The former Marines, who had been trained for positions ranging from military police to combat engineer, will be returned to service for up to 18 months and are expected to be deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan in 2007, officials said. They are among tens of thousands of former military personnel who have been discharged from the service and entered civilian life, but who may be required to return in an emergency for as long as eight years after leaving the service.

The announcement was made a day after President Bush vowed to keep US forces in Iraq for the remainder of his presidency, warning that withdrawing the estimated 138,000 American troops prematurely would be a “disaster.” Nevertheless, the involuntary call-up was unexpected and served as a reminder of the strain on US ground combat units, which have served multiple tours in both conflicts and have suffered the brunt of US casualties. There are 22,000 Marines in Iraq.

“This is an extraordinary series of events,” Senator Jack Reed , a Rhode Island Democrat and senior member of the Armed Services Committee, said in a telephone interview. “It is symptomatic of the very difficult burden the troops are bearing.”

The Army has already issued orders to recall about 10,000 discharged soldiers since the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, but many of them were granted exemptions. Of those, about 5,000 have been mobilized; about half of them are now serving overseas. Sixteen percent of them volunteered to return to service.

However, it is the first time the Marines have called back personnel who have left the service. The Corps has met its recruiting goals, has been able to retain a sufficient number of seasoned combat veterans, and has been authorized by Congress to increase its overall ranks, but says it is short about 1,200 specialists in engineering, military police work, communications, and intelligence operations.

There are about 59,000 former Marines in what’s known as the Individual Ready Reserve; President Bush has authorized the Corps to call up twice the number it needs as a hedge against service members who qualify for hardship exemptions or cannot serve for other reasons.

In 2003, the Marine Corps was authorized to call up as many as 7,500 Marines from the reserve pool in preparation for the invasion of Iraq. Only about 2,658 orders were issued, however, when the military stormed Baghdad within a few weeks. Approximately 2,000 retired Marines actually served.

“When Baghdad fell we thought that this was not going to be a prolonged battle,” said Major Steven O’Connor, Marine Corps spokesman .

Three years later, however, the Iraq war has spiraled into a bloody insurgency, and sectarian violence is on the rise. Some 7,000 US troops have been moved from posts across the country to beef up security in Baghdad. One Army unit already in the process of returning home — including 300 troops that had already reached the United States — got orders extending their tour in Iraq.

At the same time, the remnants of the radical Taliban regime in Afghanistan, weakened during the initial US invasion in late 2001, have gained new strength. This summer, an estimated 22,000 US troops have been involved in some of the most direct combat there since the conflict began after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Still, the Marines’ announcement raised eyebrows among some military specialists yesterday.

“The announcement surprised me,” said Charles Henning , a retired Army officer who specializes in military affairs at the Congressional Research Service, the research arm of the Library of Congress. “I see no indication that they are having trouble manning their units.”

Henning said the Marines’ seven-month combat tours have perhaps “placed enough strain on the system and they don’t want to be sending people back three or four times,” he said. But it also could be that the rising US casualties in Iraq — where more than 2,600 troops have died and tens of thousands have been injured since the invasion — may be taking a toll on heavily used units.

The Marine Corps said yesterday that it was making every effort to soften the blow for the Marines returning to duty. For example, the call-up will spare Marines who are in their first year out of uniform, while those who haven’t seen as much combat will go to the top of the list.

“If we have two Marines with the same qualifications, we can choose the one with fewer combat tours or the less recent combat tour,” according to a five-page Marine Corps explanation drawn up for yesterday’s announcement.

Meanwhile, officials said that since the fall of Baghdad in April 2003, the Marine Corps said it has required all members of the Individual Ready Reserve to report in once a year to be reminded that they still must serve if called. They are also informed of training opportunities and encouraged to join their local Marine Corps Reserve unit to maintain their military skills. Each Marine is paid $165 for reporting.

Still, some of the Bush administration’s critics have labeled the practice of recalling discharged personnel a “back-door draft.” Some former troops have filed suit against the Defense Department, opposing their call-ups.

Some critics have said the practice is simply a quick fix for a long-term problem: filling the ranks with qualified volunteers.

“When most people make the decision to leave the active force they purse a whole new civilian life,” said Reed, a former Army Ranger. “It is not like they expected a call any minute. It is not like reservists that train every month. This places a huge burden on these young people.”

Representative Martin T. Meehan, a Lowell Democrat and member of the House Armed Services Committee, said the White House has resisted calls from Congress to increase the size of the Army and Marine Corps to help relieve some of the pressure.

“Filling holes in this fashion is bad for morale, unit cohesion, and retention,” Meehan said in a telephone interview yesterday. “It is a stop-gap measure, but I don’t think it can make up for our long-term policies that are breaking our military.”

Bryan Bender can be reached at bender@globe.com.

August 10, 2006

2006.08.10: Re: Antiwar Bulletin: Saturday — National Emergency March in D.C.

From: Lucy Herschel
Sent: Thursday, August 10, 2006 2:49 PM
To: Graciela M. Lopez; Frederic Pratt; Michael Letwin; Scott Rudnick; 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS; James A. Bernal
Subject: Re: Antiwar Bulletin: Saturday — National Emergency March in D.C.

we have World War III starting and people can’t deal with a little controversy on the e-mail?  I’m traumatized each day just looking at the pictures of blown up children and crushed babies in the NYTimes.  There’s a war going on – get used to a little unpleasantness.

If you support what Israel’s doing now, get used to being “offended” by people speaking out against it – just as those of us who don’t support it are offended by Fox News, CNN and just about all of our elected representatives every day.

And what exactly is so “offensive” about pro-Palestinian or pro-Lebanese e-mails?  If you think opposing Israel is anti-semetic, then your case doesn’t hold water, for reasons others have gone into.

If, rather, you are offended because people are speaking out against a war you support, then, I’m sorry, because we’re not going to stop.   No stretch of the imagination can call what Israel is doing a “defensive war”, just as the US war and occupation in Iraq is not defensive.  Israel first trapped people in Lebanon by bombing highways, bridges, and even buses of people trying to escape.  Now it blames civilians for not leaving as it bombs them en mass, as well as bombing trucks carrying food, taking out power plants, etc, and creating a general humanitarian disaster which will take hundreds more lives.  Maybe no more brutal than the occupation of Iraq, but that doesn’t exactly speak in it’s favor.

Beyond the moral argument, this is an issue all working people should be concerned about.  The US spends billions of dollars every year to arm Israel to the teeth for one reason and one reason only:  to help maintain US dominance over the most important oil-producing region in the world.  (It’s the same reason why the second biggest recipient of U.S. foriegn aid is Egypt, one of its other main Mid-East allies.)  As others have pointed out, that’s billions of dollars being taken out of social programs and out of our pockets.  Furthmore, rather than making us safer, it has made the world a much more dangerous place for everyone on all sides.

And that’s why people should go down to DC this weekend and join in the protests.

>>> Frederic Pratt 08/10 12:10 PM >>>
I have to disagree.  I know we’ve waded through this almost endlessly, even as recently as this morning, but you’re basically asking Michael to censor himself because his views are unpopular provoke anger –albeit not universally.  That anger, in turn, has led to the prospect of management censorship.

Unlike the debates which tend to follow Michael’s emails, Michael’s emails themselves tend to be concise and to the point, whether one agrees with them or not: they inform of an event and give a brief description of what the event is about.  When I see the words “Antiwar Bulletin,”  I know full what what the email is going to about and can delete it without reading if I chose.  The prospect of censorship has risen more from the angry responses to Michael’s emails than from the emails themselves.

>>> Michael Letwin 08/09 3:44 PM >>>

NATIONAL EMERGENCY MARCH
WASHINGTON D.C.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 12
Assemble 12 Noon at the White House

Support the People of Palestine and Lebanon!
Stop the U.S.-Israeli War!
Support the Palestinian Peoples Right to Return!
From Iraq to Lebanon to Palestine: OCCUPATION IS A CRIME!

The National Council of Arab Americans (NCA) with the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation and the ANSWER Coalition is organizing a National March on Washington August 12 in Washington DC to protest the Israeli assaults on Lebanon and Palestine.

Protest US-Israeli Assaults!
We call on our community and the movement at large to join the NCA, MAS Freedom Foundation and the ANSWER Coalition this Saturday!

In addition to the national demonstration in Washington, DC, NCA, MAS and ANSWER are organizing demonstrations across the US in New Hampshire, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle. To learn more about the National March on Washington and about regional demonstrations, please go here.

Despite all, the sun continues to rise from the South – from the camps of the Gaza Strip to the villages of South Lebanon.

More on Lebanon…
NCA National Office
National Council of Arab Americans (NCA)
email: nationaloffice@arab-american.net
phone: 530.756.5548
web: http://www.arab-american.net

Buses from NYC leave 6 A.M., return same day; Advance purchase required

**
42nd St. and Broadway (by Times Square), East side of the street corner $30
E-mail: adhocaugust12@yahoo.com

**
55 W. 17th St.
$35 ($25 for fixed income/students).
http://www.IACenter.org
212-633-6646

**
Bus tickets for the following locations are available for $35 at: https://secure2.convio.net/pep/site/Ecommerce?store_id=1861&JServSessionIdr005=87f3x6ge22.app6a
(or call 212-694-8720):

Harlem
125 & Lenox Ave
2/3 trains

Astoria
Astoria Blvd. and 31st St.
N/W trains

Bay Ridge
Bay Ridge Ave. and 4th Ave.
Bay Ridge stop on the R train

Union Square
Union Square South (14th St.)
L,N,Q,R,W,4,5,6 trains

2006.08.10: Re: Antiwar Bulletin: Saturday — National Emergency March in D.C.

From: Lisa R. Edwards
Sent: Thursday, August 10, 2006 12:53 PM
To: 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Re: Antiwar Bulletin: Saturday — National Emergency March in D.C.

Shame on those calling for censorship.  Who defines what is purely a political discussion and what is worthy of dissimination through the entire list serve.  That is censorship.  We start regulating one type of speech we open the door to the regulation of other types that you who complain may want to read.   I do not want to take additional time out of my day to log into a chat room.  Just hit the freaking delete button already and stop trying to deny me my right to free speech  Darn, it’s like a freaking witch hunt.  I am prepared to fight management on any effort to censor our e-mails.  I remember sending an e-mail to solicit employment opportunities for a client and having the management police e-mail me  back to say that I was violating their e-mail policy and will lose my e-mail priviledges if I incurr another infraction.  Is that what you all  want to happen again.  Open access!! Free speech!! and NO Censorship!!  (sorry Jason for the bold type,  caps and exclamation points  but I guess I’m upset!!!)  Lisa

>>> Patrick Langhenry 08/10 12:25 PM >>>
As do I.

>>> Noha Arafa 08/10 12:04 PM >>>

I am very happy that Michael is sending out these e-mails.  So not everyone is pissed off. Please do not speak for the masses.  Is this an issue that concerns an organization that represents poor people?  Yes it is.  The money that is being used by our administration to fund the turmoil in the Middle East is money that can be used to put food in our clients’ mouths, clothes on our clients backs, a roof over their head, healthcare, which is not a privilege but a right, and education.

What truly pisses me off is that we as attorneys are calling for CENSORSHIP!  What is cacophony to one man’s ears is music to another’s.  If you don’t like it, delete it, but please do not deny me of choices because you are offended.

>>> Michael Letwin 08/09 3:44 PM >>>
NATIONAL EMERGENCY MARCH
WASHINGTON D.C.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 12
Assemble 12 Noon at the White House

Support the People of Palestine and Lebanon!
Stop the U.S.-Israeli War!
Support the Palestinian Peoples Right to Return!
From Iraq to Lebanon to Palestine: OCCUPATION IS A CRIME!

The National Council of Arab Americans (NCA) with the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation and the ANSWER Coalition is organizing a National March on Washington August 12 in Washington DC to protest the Israeli assaults on Lebanon and Palestine.

Protest US-Israeli Assaults!
We call on our community and the movement at large to join the NCA, MAS Freedom Foundation and the ANSWER Coalition this Saturday!

In addition to the national demonstration in Washington, DC, NCA, MAS and ANSWER are organizing demonstrations across the US in New Hampshire, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle. To learn more about the National March on Washington and about regional demonstrations, please go here.

Despite all, the sun continues to rise from the South – from the camps of the Gaza Strip to the villages of South Lebanon.

More on Lebanon…
NCA National Office
National Council of Arab Americans (NCA)
email: nationaloffice@arab-american.net
phone: 530.756.5548
web: http://www.arab-american.net

Buses from NYC leave 6 A.M., return same day; Advance purchase required

**
42nd St. and Broadway (by Times Square), East side of the street corner $30
E-mail: adhocaugust12@yahoo.com

**
55 W. 17th St.
$35 ($25 for fixed income/students).
http://www.IACenter.org
212-633-6646

**
Bus tickets for the following locations are available for $35 at: https://secure2.convio.net/pep/site/Ecommerce?store_id=1861&JServSessionIdr005=87f3x6ge22.app6a
(or call 212-694-8720):

Harlem
125 & Lenox Ave
2/3 trains

Astoria
Astoria Blvd. and 31st St.
N/W trains

Bay Ridge
Bay Ridge Ave. and 4th Ave.
Bay Ridge stop on the R train

Union Square
Union Square South (14th St.)
L,N,Q,R,W,4,5,6 trains

August 9, 2006

2006.08.09: Antiwar Bulletin: Saturday — National Emergency March in D.C.

Filed under: Antiwar,Palestine,Uncategorized — nyclaw01 @ 11:55 am
Tags:

From: Michael Letwin
Sent: Wednesday, August 09, 2006 3:44 PM
To: G1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS
Subject: Antiwar Bulletin: Saturday — National Emergency March in D.C.

NATIONAL EMERGENCY MARCH
WASHINGTON D.C.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 12
Assemble 12 Noon at the White House

Support the People of Palestine and Lebanon!
Stop the U.S.-Israeli War!
Support the Palestinian Peoples Right to Return!
From Iraq to Lebanon to Palestine: OCCUPATION IS A CRIME!

The National Council of Arab Americans (NCA) with the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation and the ANSWER Coalition is organizing a National March on Washington August 12 in Washington DC to protest the Israeli assaults on Lebanon and Palestine.

Protest US-Israeli Assaults!
We call on our community and the movement at large to join the NCA, MAS Freedom Foundation and the ANSWER Coalition this Saturday!

In addition to the national demonstration in Washington, DC, NCA, MAS and ANSWER are organizing demonstrations across the US in New Hampshire, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle. To learn more about the National March on Washington and about regional demonstrations, please go here.

Despite all, the sun continues to rise from the South – from the camps of the Gaza Strip to the villages of South Lebanon.

More on Lebanon…
NCA National Office
National Council of Arab Americans (NCA)
email: nationaloffice@arab-american.net
phone: 530.756.5548
web: http://www.arab-american.net

Buses from NYC leave 6 A.M., return same day; Advance purchase required

**
42nd St. and Broadway (by Times Square), East side of the street corner $30
E-mail: adhocaugust12@yahoo.com

**
55 W. 17th St.
$35 ($25 for fixed income/students).
http://www.IACenter.org
212-633-6646

**
Bus tickets for the following locations are available for $35 at: https://secure2.convio.net/pep/site/Ecommerce?store_id=1861&JServSessionIdr005=87f3x6ge22.app6a
(or call 212-694-8720):

Harlem
125 & Lenox Ave
2/3 trains

Astoria
Astoria Blvd. and 31st St.
N/W trains

Bay Ridge
Bay Ridge Ave. and 4th Ave.
Bay Ridge stop on the R train

Union Square
Union Square South (14th St.)
L,N,Q,R,W,4,5,6 trains

August 4, 2006

2006.08.04: Antiwar Bulletin: Tomorrow — U.S. Out of the Middle East

Filed under: Antiwar,Palestine,Uncategorized — nyclaw01 @ 11:55 am
Tags:

From: Michael Letwin
Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 8:36 AM
To: Graciela Lopez; 1199 Members; ALAA MEMBERS; James Bernal
Subject: Antiwar Bulletin: Tomorrow — U.S. Out of the Middle East

Sat., Aug. 5
4:00 pm: Rally at Times Square
5:30 pm: March to Exxon Mobile

No Justice – No Peace
U.S. Out of the Middle East!

*Support the Palestinian and Lebanese Peoples’ Right to Resist!
*End the Occupation of IRAQ, PALESTINE and LEBANON *Support the Palestinian People’s Right to Return *U.S./Israeli Troops Out Now *No More Fighting and Dying for Oil Profits *STOP U.S. Aid to Israel

——————
In the past few days, the horrific crimes committed against the people of Lebanon and Palestine by the U.S.-backed Israeli regime have inspired outrage and protest across the globe.  What has become clear to many watching the criminal invasion of Lebanon and the ongoing brutality against the people of Palestine is the role of the U.S. as the initiator, supplier, and funder of Israel’s crimes.

The Qana Massacre: Made in the U.S.

Ever since Israel launched its criminal attack against the people of Lebanon, the U.S. government has been rushing shipments of precision missiles to Israel–the same sort of weapons that were used against Qana.

*-From 2001-2005, Israel received $10.5 billion in Foreign Military Financing — the Pentagon’s biggest military aid program — and $6.3 billion in U.S. arms deliveries

*-The U.S. has resisted and blocked every call for a ceasefire in order to allow the Israeli Defense Forces time to complete its campaign of terror against the people of Lebanon.

There would be no occupation, no bombs dropping on Lebanese and Palestinian children, no tanks destroying homes, no artillery to rain destruction on hospitals without billions of dollars each year that the U.S. government gives to the Israeli government.  Since 1949 the U.S.
has given Israel a total of $84,854,827,200. We must expose, challenge, and struggle to end the U.S. support for Israel’s crimes.

Immediately after the criminal invasion of Lebanon, the International Action Center issued a call to action for August 5, under the slogan,
“No justice, no peace–U.S. Out of the Middle East!”   Across the U.S.,
activists are organizing pickets, protests, teach-ins, informational leafleting, and public forums, all directed against the U.S. role in the crimes of war and occupation.  Now, more than 200 organizations worldwide have signed on to the call, and protests will take place across the globe, from London to Cairo to Tel Aviv and throughout Latin America.

It is not enough to just say “Bring the troops home from Iraq.”  We must challenge the Empire everywhere that it is attempting to carve up and recolonize the area, from Afghanistan to Iran to the West Bank.  We can no longer look at these struggles as isolated crises–we must unite on the streets to say “U.S. Out of the Middle East!”

Next Step: August 12, Washington DC

Join us this weekend on the streets for emergency international protests.  Then, join us for the next step, the August 12th National March on Washington, called by the National Council of Arab Americans, the Answer Coalition, and the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation.  Contact us at 212-633-6646 for buses from New York to Washington.

Read Call <http://iacenter.org/aug5call.htm&gt;
Endorse <http://iacenter.org/aug5endorse.shtml&gt;
List Activity <http://iacenter.org/aug5endorse.shtml&gt;
Download Flyer <http://iacenter.org/aug5flyer.pdf&gt;
Donate <http://www.troopsoutnow.org/donate.html&gt;

Contact the IAC at 212-633-6646 for more info

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