Progressive Calendar 03.05.12 /2
From: David Shove (
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2012 11:20:37 -0800 (PST)
P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R   03.05.12

1. Vs Israel bonds 3.05 2:30pm
2. Bike summit     3.05
3. Ford site          3.05 6:30pm

4. Dave Lindorff - Our gang of war criminals

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From: Ahmed Tharwat ahmediatv [at]
Vs Israel bonds 3.05 2:30pm

On March 5 th at 2:30 pm
pack the Ramsey County Courthouse to
tell Judge Marrinan “No Material Support for Oppression”!

In an attempt to dodge our arguments that Minnesota’s investments in Israel
Bonds violate state and international law, the State Board of Investment
(SBI) filed a motion to dismiss our complaint based on an alleged lack of
jurisdiction and failure to state a claim. This motion will be heard on
March 5, 2012 at 2:30 p.m. at the Ramsey County Courthouse (Click here for directions). We need to pack the courtroom so that
Judge Marrinan can see the level of support we have in stoppingMinnesota
from continuing to fund apartheid!

At the hearing, the judge will listen to the SBI’s Motion to Dismiss in
favor of dismissing the case from the Minnesota Attorney General’s (AG)
Office which is representing the SBI. Lawyers representing the Plaintiff
(MN BBC and all of the co-plaintiffs) who are asking the court to order the
SBI to divest from Israel Bonds will also present our Opposition to the
SBI’s Motion to Dismiss. In addition, the judge will listen to the
Plaintiff’s lawyers argue a “Summary Judgment Motion” regarding why she can
and should rule in our favor immediately on Count One of our Complaint.
Count One states that Minnesota’s investments in Israel Bonds are illegal
under current Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 11A and Chapter 356A. The AG’s
Office will then provide their counter-arguments to our Summary Judgment
Motion (SBI’s Response to Summary Judgment Motion Part 1 and Part 2. The
audience can of course be present in the courtroom during the duration of
the whole hearing, but please note that proper court decorum is in order.
This is not a rally.

Once the arguments are completed the court will decide whether to permit
the case to go forward (i.e. not side with the SBI that the case ought to
be dismissed), and the judge has ninety days to issue a ruling. If she
chooses to also rule on our Summary Judgment Motion, which she does not
have to, she could decide Israel Bonds are in fact an illegal investment
and demand that the state divest immediately! However, given that the case
involves a public official making a decision regarding Israel/Palestine, it
is highly likely that the case will ultimately be decided in the appellate
court. Throughout this process we invite you join us in recalling this wise
observation from Nelson Mandela:“It always seems impossible – until it’s

Note: All of the linked legal documents can be read before the hearing to
give you a greater understanding of the oral arguments that will be
presented in the courtroom
Opposition to the SBI’s Motion to Dismiss
SBI’s response to MN BBC’s Opposition to its Motion to Dismiss
SBI’s Response to Summary Judgement Motion Part 1 and Part 2
MN BBC’s Response to SBI’s Opposition to our Summary Judgment Motion

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From: Ed Davis ed [at]
Bike summit 3.05

The 2012 Minnesota Bike Summit on Capitol Hill
Monday, March 5, 2012.

What is the Bike Summit?
A way to meet with cycling advocates from all over the state and to
discuss bike-related legislative issues, bike facilities, and state
agencies that impact bicycle programs throughout Minnesota.
More info:

Summit Schedule
   9:30 a.m. - Registration, Networking, Continental Breakfast
   10:00 a.m. - Morning sessions will begin at Christ Lutheran Church,
directly across the street from the Capitol building.
   11:45 a.m. - Lunch
   12:30 p.m. - Meet in small groups to discuss legislative meetings.
   1:45 p.m. - Rally for our cause in the Capitol rotunda.
   9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Meet with legislators to discuss the impact of
bicycling on the health of individuals, communities, the environment and the

BikeMN's 2012 Legislative Agenda:

- Support for the authorization of Minnesota's first state bikeway
- Create the first state funded Safe Routes to School grant program in the
- Pass important bike safety improvements.

Register here:
or e-mail for questions: info[at]bikemn[dot]org

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From: Andy Hamerlinck
Ford site 3.05 6:30pm

Ford Site Task Force. Public meet scheduled for Monday, March 5, 6:30 -
8:30 at the Ford Site
Training Center (which is at the Ford Plant itself). It will likely be a
chance to catch up on
the issues surrounding the site.

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March 01, 2012
Threatening Iran
Our Gang of War Criminals by DAVE LINDORFF

If a bunch of street toughs decided to gang up and beat the crap out of
some guy in the neighborhood because they feared he might be planning to
buy a gun to protect his family, I think we’d all agree that the police
would be right to bust that crew and charge them with conspiracy to commit
the crime of assault and battery. If they went forward with their plan and
actually did attack the guy, injuring or killing him in the process, we’d
also all agree they should all be charged with assault and battery,
attempted murder, or even first-degree murder if he died.

In international relations and international law, the same applies. Under
the Nuremberg Principles, later incorporated into the United Nations
Charter, to which the United States is a signatory, the planning,
preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression, which is defined
as a war started against another nation that does not pose an imminent
threat of attack on the aggressor nation or nations, is the highest of war
crimes, for which the perpetrators are liable for the death penalty.
Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any
of those above acts is an equally serious capital crime.

How then to explain the casual way that civilian and military leaders of
the US and Israel are talking openly about plans and threats to attack Iran?

The supposed casus belli or justification for such an attack is that Iran,
which has a uranium enrichment program underway which it claims is to
produce nuclear fuel for its new nuclear reactor  (a completely legal
activity for any nation under international law), secretly plans to further
enrich uranium to make an atomic bomb. Yet that is a
process which, even if it were to be implemented, would not lead to an
actual bomb suitable for testing for at least a year, and which would not
give Iran a functioning, useable weapon for even longer. (US intelligence
sources say that Iran at this point is not even trying to make a bomb!).

That alleged threat, even if it were real, doesn’t even come close to
constituting an “imminent” threat of attack of the kind which might justify
a pre-emptive strike on Iran, as is being publicly contemplated and
threatened by the US and Israel.

The simple fact is that the president of the United States, Barack Obama,
and his top generals and cabinet officers, are committing a war crime every
time they threaten Iran with attack.  The president is also committing a
crime of conspiracy when he sends his generals to Israel, which is also
committing the crime of threatening to attack Iran and planning to attack
Iran. This is because by discussing options for an attack, or by providing
Israel with the weapons and delivery systems it would need for such an
attack, as the US is doing by sending Israel super large bunker-buster
bombs and bomb-capable aircraft, they are furthering that conspiracy.

What is absolutely stunning is that this massive criminality at the highest
levels of the US government is going on totally unchallenged by the US
mainstream media. In an editorial on Feb. 3, the New York Times
acknowledged that there was “no proof” that Iran has “made the decision to
move from producing fuel to building a bomb.” Yet even so, the paper went
on to warn against an Israeli and/or US attack on Iran, saying only that,
“The costs of an Israeli military strike — with or without American support
— would be huge,” and that it could “backfire.”

There is not one word in the Times or anywhere else in the corporate media
about the reality that such an attack would constitute the commission of a
supreme war crime.

President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton and the White House Press Secretary Jay Carney have all publicly
warned that “all options” are “on the table” in dealing with Iran’s
supposed threat to construct a nuclear weapon — a clear reference to their
being ready to attack Iran if necessary.  Both the president and Defense
(sic) Secretary Leon E. Panetta have vowed that the US “will not allow”
Iran to develop a nuclear bomb,” which comes almost as close in threatening
war, since Commander in Chief Obama and Defense Secretary Panetta have
already stationed the requisite three Navy aircraft carriers in the Persian
Gulf and the Gulf of Arabia which military experts say would be necessary
for any attack on Iran.

But despite all the war talk and saber rattling, the only debate in the US
media seems to be over whether the US is really planning to attack Iran, or
whether it would join in attacking Iran if Israel were to launch an attack,
not on whether such an attack by either nation on Iran would constitute a
horrific war crime.

There are polls, some of which show a majority of Americans to favor an
attack on Iran by the US, but again, there are no pollsters asking
Americans whether they think such an attack would be a crime against

I suppose we should not be surprised at this sorry state of affairs. After
all, the most brutal war that the US engaged in since World War II, when it
became the only nation to ever use atomic weapons, incinerating two large
cities in Japan in the waning days of that conflict, was the Indochina War,
and North Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia never posed the slightest threat to
the United States. Nobody was tried , much less hung for that atrocity,
though a string of American civilian and military leaders should have been.
 The 2003 invasion of Iraq, which also posed no conceivable threat to the
US, was also clearly a war crime which should have sent President Bush and
his grim-visaged regent, Vice President Dick Cheney, to the gallows, but
they were never even indicted.

Never have the US media suggested that these past horrors were war crimes
deserving prosecution (though at least the House Impeachment Committee did
consider charging President Richard Nixon with a war crime for invading

So why should we expect things to be any different now?

Well, perhaps because the consequences of this latest war crime in the
making could have far more serious consequences, even, than the Vietnam War
and the Iraq War, not just for American military personnel, and not even
just for America, but for the entire world.

Iran is decidedly not Iraq. It is a country of 74 million, not 24 million.
It is a country with a long history and a strong national identity, not a
group of disparate, feuding tribes and regions cobbled together by a
departing colonial power as was Iraq. It also has strong backers — both
Russia and China, as well as neighboring Turkey and Pakistan–all of whom
could and probably would rally to its aid in the event of an attack. The
whole Islamic world would also likely rise up in support of Iran if it were
attacked by Israel and the US.  The likelihood of such a war remaining
confined to Iran is almost nil.

As well, an attack on Iran would shut down oil shipments not just from Iran
but from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states of Kuwait and the UAE, all of
which have to ship out their oil through the narrow Strait of Hormuz. Even
if that strait were not successfully closed by Iran, which owns half the
width of the waterway, no insurance company would cover the tankers that
would have to traverse it under threat of Iranian attack, so shipments
would simply cease, causing a huge spike in oil prices and a collapse of
the global economy. That alone could be enough to lead China, heavily
dependent upon Iranian oil, to act in Iran’s defense — something it could
do by simply ratcheting up the tension level in its standing conflict with
the “renegade island province” of Taiwan, which country the US is bound by
law to defend.

One would think that the magnitude of the unknown and dangerous potential
consequences of a criminal attack on Iran by the US and its client state
Israel would lead at least some news organizations to look into the very
legality of such an attack.

But no. Apparently calling the leaders of this nation criminals is beyond
the imagining of the so-called chattering class and its paymasters.

I’ll do it here though:

President Obama and his key advisors, as well as Vice President Biden,
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Defense Secretary Panetta, are all
currently war criminals for threatening Iran with attack.  And if the US
does attack Iran, either on its own or in support of an Israeli attack,
they will be even worse war criminals, and will be deserving of the same
fate met by Japan’s Imperial Army General and Prime Minister Hideki Tojo,
and by Nazi Germany’s Foreign Minister Joachim Von Ribbentrop and Field
Marshall Wilhelm Keitel, who all hanged for their crimes.

Dave Lindorff is a founder of This Can’t Be Happening and a contributor to
Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion, forthcoming from AK
Press. He lives in Philadelphia.


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