Debra Sweet

 Debra SweetDebra Sweet is the Director of World Can’t Wait, initiated in 2005 to “drive out the Bush regime” by repudiating its program, forcing it from office through a mass, independent movement and reversing the direction it had launched.  Based in New York City, she leads World Can’t Wait in its continuing efforts to stop the crimes of our government, including the unjust occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan and the torture and detention codes, as well as reversing the fascist direction of U.S. society, from the surveillance state to the criminalization of abortion and immigrants.  She has worked with abortion providers for twenty-five years, organizing community support and helping them withstand anti-abortion violence.  Since the age of 19, when she confronted Richard Nixon during a face-to-face meeting and told him to stop the war in Vietnam, she has been a leader in the opposition to U.S. wars and invasions.  Debra says, “Stop thinking like an American, and start thinking about humanity!”

She can be reached at debrasweet (at) worldcantwait.org. You can read her writings at debra.worldcantwait.net.

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Saying NO to Obama's War Moves in Afghanistan

Last week, thousands, -- but not tens or hundreds of thousands, or the millions needed to stop this war -- protested Obama's war surge in Afghanistan.  Across the country, groups of people from Honolulu to Maine to Florida, gathered, mostly on Wednesday, to respond with anger and outrage to 30,000 more troops from the US, and others from NATO, destroying one of the poorest countries in the world. 
 
About 300 people gathered outside the gate at West Point on December 1 to protest the escalation Obama announced, more than protested there during the Bush era. Over and over, people talked about having voted for Obama, but now being disillusioned, and really "heart broken" as Matthis Chiroux, the Iraq war resister put it. The protest was intense, as the group marched silently to the main gate of West Point. Once there, we chanted "STOP THIS WAR NOW!" and "30,000 More! What the hell FOR?"
 
18 people, including 4 high school students, sat in front of the gate, with 6 arrested for disorderly conduct.
 

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Support this Resistance Movement

By Debra Sweet

The need to continue to support this resistance movement is urgent and great.
 
With the help of many participants and donors, World Can't Wait has carried out protests across the country against what is presented as the "good war" in Afghanistan.
 
We do all this with your financial contributions, and I thank you for all that you've given. As the end of the year approaches, I'm asking you to remember this movement with a contribution (you can now use your credit card to make a tax-deductible donation).
 
Giving to this movement is one of the important political acts you can make right now. This is the time for moral clarity and resistance. The World Can't Wait!
 
Message from Cindy Sheehan in Oslo
 

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Guantanamo on the Mississippi in Thomson, Illinois

By Debra Sweet 

On Tuesday, December 15th, after many months of deliberation and searching the Obama administration announced its plan to transfer under 100 detainees currently held at Guantanamo detention center in Cuba to Thomson Correctional Facility in Thomson, IL.
 
Reports indicate that the detainees transferred will  be tried under military commissions (very similar to the Bush regime trials the world criticized) and 30 to 40 will be detained indefinitely.
 
This move on the part of the Obama administration is intended to be part of Obama's promise to close the US detention facility at Guantanamo, which symbolizes to the world a disgusting and flagrant disregard for human rights.

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Plans for Taking the Resistance into 2010

By Debra Sweet 

Last week the New York Times finally reported the story of Sami al-Hajj, who was held for seven years in Guantanamo, and then suddenly released.  He was a cameraman for Al Jazeera in December 2001, taken by US forces on the border of Pakistan & Afghanistan.
 
He was tortured at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan, and eventually moved to Guantanamo.  But the US never charged him with anything.

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Guantanamo Turns 8 While More Lives Slip Away

By Debra Sweet  

 
Monday January 11 is the 8th anniversary of the U.S. detention center in Guantanamo. The emblematic symbol of the Bush regime’s “war on terror,” in which men have been openly tortured, kept in isolation, force-fed, and for years deprived of any legal respresentation or contact with the outside world, is still open.
It’s being called “Obama’s prison” now.  On January 22, 2009, the new president announced that he would close Guantanamo in a year because it’s existence was a public relations nightmare for U.S. foreign policy makers.  As of this week, there’s no closing date, but a vague indication it could be closed in 2011.

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8 Years of Torture – Shut Down Guantanamo, Now!

By Debra Sweet 

 
Eight years ago today the Bush regime opened their detention center at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. It went on to become a notorious symbol of the torture and racism that people the world over associated with the U.S. "war on terror."
 
As we mark this anniversary, many people hoped Barack Obama's promise to close Guantánamo by Jan 22, 2010 would close that chapter. But there are 2 things in the way of that... (more on this and coverage on Guantánamo all week at debra.worldcantwait.net).
 
This week:
 
Protests of John Yoo on both ends of the country Tuesday, Jan. 12th! Fire, Disbar, and Prosecute War Criminal John Yoo!
 
John Yoo, principal author of the "torture memos" justifying the Bush torture enterprise, is on a book tour, appearing on John Stewart's show (!) Monday night.
 

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Challenging Bush Torture Architect John Yoo

 By Debra Sweet  

 
Last night, on both coasts, World Can’t Wait, Code Pink and other people of conscience demanded the prosecution of John Yoo, the principal legal architect of the justification of torture by the United States.
 
In Berkeley, where Yoo’s 2010 class schedule called for the first class of the semester, UC officials made the location secret, they said, because of “concerns for students’ safety.”  
 
One might note that it would be more dangerous for a law student to be taught Constitutional law by someone who opposed international law on the subject of torture (not to mention U.S. law) than for those students to encounter advocates against torture.

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Close Guantanamo, Celebrate Roe

 By Debra Sweet 

I am hearing from around the world, and especially Pakistan, that our protest against U.S. drone bombings was much appreciated. We got as close to CIA headquarters as we could, then marched to Dick Cheney's new house.

Drones and artificial intelligence are the weapons of choice for US investment in expanding empire and occupation. We should and will be doing a lot more visible protest of the military and CIA drone programs... (read more at debra.worldcantwait.net)

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U.S. Offensive in Afghanistan: A Brutal Occupation Intensifies

By Debra Sweet 

 
If you can find news of the largest U.S./NATO offensive of the past 8 years in Afghanistan last week, it's likely to be profiles of the soldiers and Marines who are up against tough odds, but "sure to prevail."
 
Those odds described by the US command, and repeated endlessly on FOX News, are that the "Taliban uses civilians as cover" and that the Afghan military and police really aren't ready to "step up" and run their own country.
 
This offensive on Marjah in southern Afghanistan is led by General Stanley McChrystal, the counter insurgency expert brought into Afghanistan by Obama last year to reverse the U.S. military debacle there, and who led widespread secret operations, reported by Esquire last year to include torture, under General Petreaus in Iraq.

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Marines & NATO: Spreading Death and Destruction in Afghanistan

 By Debra Sweet  

 
From today’s Washington Post: “U.S. air strikes targeting a convoy of buses traveling in southern Afghanistan killed at least 25 civilians and wounded a dozen more in a bombing that could fuel a political backlash against the ongoing military offensive in Afghanistan.”
 
Does anyone think we’re getting a true picture of what’s happening in Helmand Province during the US/NATO offensive in Marjah?
 
General David Petraeus, who runs the whole Euro/Asian military occupation “overseas contingency operation” as head of CENTCOM, says this battle is an “initial salvo” in a military campaign of 12 – 18 months.  So much for U.S. forces leaving Afghanistan in mid-2011.  This is just a start of the U.S. offensive.

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Mikael Rudolph, Activist & Mime, RIP

By Debra Sweet  

 
Mikael Rudolph died at home in Minneapolis on Friday, after struggling with cancer for several years.  He was a well-known mime, traveling nationally to perform. He was a principal organizer of protests in Minneapolis to Drive Out the Bush Regime 2006 – 2008.  He posted many articles during that time on OpEd News.
 
I initially met Mikael the Mime in the Minneapolis airport when he was returning from a show, and I was changing planes. We were on cell phones, trying to find each other in the crowds.  He said, “I’m a mime.  I won’t be hard to find.”  And he was not hard to find.  He stood out as a unique, energetic, passionate human being.

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About

World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.