When all the CODEPINK folks
and associated friends stop fasting for peace on sep 21, the
baton's going to be passed to millions of people as the
world's muslims start the month-long fast for ramadan
on the morning of sep 24. this involves not eating between
the prayer that marks the break of day and the prayer marking
the end of the day. i did my first ramadan fast last year
and i'll be participating again this year. it is also
not acceptable to speak or even think badly of anyone during
the time of fasting. doing that last year was, in fact, the
most rewarding part of ramadan for me. i started a few days
early practising while driving. i was very surprised to see
what was coming out of my head and my mouth quite involuntarily
and quite uncensored. i had to find a different way to think
of and to voice my frustrations and concerns. it was quite
a reach for me and the most beautiful part of my fasting.
i'm a 63 year old american woman who lived in israel
for many years and started out in life jewish. i've also
been quite environmentally and politically active over the
years. and a bit less than a year ago i became a muslim as
a result of becoming part of a sufi community focused on opening
the heart to love.
i'm wishing us all realization of our deepest longings.
mine is for peace in the middle east. and as i write these
words, i am starting to cry, as i always do when i think or
say that my deepest longing is for peace in the middle east.
cherishing all you do,
Hello All you wonderful CODEPINK folks,
Just a note to let you know I'm still with you in spirit. I finished 24 days of fasting, the last 7 moving into diluted fruit/vegetable/almond/ricemilk. I've gone through 3 days of whole fruit meals and now am experiencing a level of health much better than when I started. Your inspiration has been fantastic. The work you're accomplishing now in the MidEast is so right on. I'll be fasting once a week from now on on Thursdays.
I head to Haiti for my real focus on human rights, anti-militarism work on Aug. 20. Please keep this devastated land in your spirits.
The US has wreaked havoc there for centuries. All the work you are doing will have benefits for Haiti as well.
Tom Luce, San Francisco, CA
Dear Troops Home Fasters,
This is to bring you greetings and warm good wishes from the people of Bhopal and the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal.
I am a writer, living in the UK, involved in the Bhopal cause for the last 13 years. We have had a lot of help from Diane Wilson and others involved in Codepink and wish to reciprocate. You should be hearing from the gas-victims' organisations soon.
Meanwhile I have joined the fast as an individual, and will fast on July 24 and every Monday thereafter until the fast ends.
love and hugs to all,
I thank God for raising people of faith like you , people who know what to, when to do it and to how to do it. The lord renew your strenght. Grant answers to all your supplications and grant your people peace.
Our fast and prayer of agreement is registered in heaven and shall be counted for you all as good work.
I am proud to join in this fast.
Environmental Rights Action/ friends of the Earth Nigeria
Dear Code Pink,
SFNOW wants to be ready for the sit in with members organized. Please advise us on how we can support you. We'll be coming out with a newsletter that we can time accordingly and could publish your call to action and report from Iraq and the fast. I can't tell you how much gratitude, respect and love I have for you and your sheroic efforts. In my 6th month of pregnancy now, I have had to stop listening to the news in the morning because the reports of innocent children and civilians dying by the hundreds is breaking my heart. It is utterly painful to think of my pregnant sisters out there, with explosions punctuating their every day, trying to maintain the maternal positivity it takes to do this right. Until you break your fast in Iraq, I hope you can be nourished by the love and gratitude of those of us who support you. Goddess bless and safe travels,
Dear Women of Codepink, Dear Peace Activists!
We greet you from the peace research village Tamera in the South of Portugal and want to inform you that we join your "Troops Home Fast" action. Until today* 40 co-workers,* students and guests of Tamera decided to follow your appeal, among them also the peace visionaries Sabine Lichtenfels (theologian) and Dieter Duhm (psycho analyst and sociologist), both co-founders of Tamera. *We will fast every Friday, full day - until September 21, International Peace Day. *
We use the time we would spent eating to think together about further steps and actions, and to study and spread peace information. We ask our friends all over the world to join this action.
PS: For those, who do not know "Tamera" - it is a peace research village in the south of Portugal, founded in 1995. (www.tamera.org). The intention is to build a model for a non-violent culture. The work is based on the peace concepts of Dieter Duhm -- one of today's most radical peace philosophers -- and Sabine Lichtenfels.
In autumn the book "Zukunft ohne Krieg" (Future without War) will be published in Germany. It describes a realistic plan how a group of determined people despite of the seeming superiority of the industry of violence and war could make peace happen. The conception, which is presented in this book, must be made available and known to the peace movement worldwide!
At the same time the book "Grace. Meine Schritte gegen den Krieg" (Grace. My Steps against War) by Sabine Lichtenfels will be published. It describes a pilgrimage with 40 people through Israel and Palestine and her conclusion: "In the Middle East more than the destiny of two peoples is decided. If peace is achieved here something new will have been achieved amongst humankind." For both books we are looking for an US-American (English) editor! Please contact us. Help spreading these thoughts!
|Dear, Inspiring, Courageous Crusaders for Peace!
Fasting for Peace is such a simple, powerful action! Even if it is just one day a week, which is what my partner and I are doing here in SF every Wednesday: A small gesture, but it keeps the dreadful situation of this bloody, unlawful invasion and occupation that much more real and present for us --to suffer a little discomfort in solidarity with those suffering so much...
The Bring the Troops Home Fast launch at Di Fi's new digs last Wednesday, July 5th, was wonderful, and the Code Pink presence at her office is just great with shocking pink banners and tabling--I stopped by last Thursday and donned Jeff Grubler's Di-Fi mask and got one grateful constituent to call on the spot using my cell phone. In the brief time I was there, so many people honked their horns in solidarity and shouted their support for Peace and for Code Pink--and many, many pedestrians took the leaflets!
Thank you for your awesome vigil at the White House!
Stay strong! We shall overcome!
Mary Bull Greenwood Earth Alliance
Save the Redwoods - Boycott the Gap Campaign
Regarding Hunger strike day 3 in Cairo, it proved to be quite eventful though not exactly as planned. Over 10 people participated on the first day of the fast, a couple are continuing until now. On my (personal) 3rd day of (continuous) fasting I went to deliver the letter of protest to the embassies. (Recent brutal attacks, imprisonment and torture on Egyptian democracy demonstrators have intimidated people from actual street protests). I felt light and clear, and not at all as weak as I had expected.
Whilst walking past the US embassy there was a wire stretched all the way from the embassy across the road ( I assumed a security installation). Though i was aware of it I didnt notice the slight loop toward which I was walking.
Suddenly there was an excruciating pain in my knee, and everything started to go black.I had fallen and I was unable to get up despite the best efforts of security personell to lift me. Though I had felt fine before the fall, the combination of trauma and fasting proved too much for my body and I struggled to hold on to consciuousness for what could have been around 10 minutes while people surrounded me, brought water, tried to pull me up unsuccessfully, and, having read about the fast from the sign I was wearing, tried to convince me to break my fast. Meanwhile I felt that I was rising and sinking into a sea of blackness, without any control over my limbs or power of speech.
However according to a personality trait which is I like to think is determination but some label morbid stubbornness I clung, against all sane advice, to my decision to get to the embassy to deliver the message. Finally, unknown forces around me supporting the cause intervened and I was whisked in a car by toward the British Embassy. Unable to walk because of my knee, and still swinging wildly back and forth between consciousness and oblivion, I clung to the bars of the revolving gate and demanded with slurred speech to be allowed to see the ambassador.
The horrified security personell didnt know what to make of my rambling speech and disshevelled state. No doubt by this time convinced I was a case on a fast track to Abbaseya (a notorious mental asylum in Cairo), they finally "revolved me" through the revolving doors, peeled me off them and left me slumped precariously on a seat while they ran around trying to decide what to do.
To cut a long story short, although the ambassador "wasnt there" I did get an audinece with a fellow diplomat and a rather large "security chief" who was eyeing me very carefully, to whom I delivered the letter and as coherent a speech as I could manage about war crimes and illegal occupation of Gaza and Iraq.
The final outcome, after being kindly escorted home by an embassy security officer in a taxi, is that after a trip to hospital, I was dicovered to have a rather large crack which almost split my kneecap into two, and am currently immobilised awaiting an MRI for final diagnosis and decision on treatment. A little souvenir from the "empire" perhaps!
Anyway, in the final analysis, if any of what we have collectively embarked on has helped to break the deafening silence of the international community on the brutal and illegal occupations, I shall have no regrets.
Unfortunately, circumstances described caused me to break the fast on the 3rd evening, we are still with you in spirit and eagerly await your news. We will not remain silent. In solidarity and gratitude to to all fasters, everywhere,
Lesley WHiting (Cairo, Egypt)
Dear Medea and other Troops Home Fasters,
After hearing about Chloe and Geoffrey's arrest on the 4th of July, I wrote this song (see below) as an anthem for the Troops Home Fast. Please feel free to sing it whenever you need a boost, and post it to your web site, if you like. I wish I could be there to sing it with you in person! Am hoping to come down with some other Raging Grannies on Grandparents' Day (September 10th). Until then, stay in trouble!
Peace with Granny love,
Troops Home Fast (July 4, 2006)
Lyrics © by Vicki Ryder
(Tune: "Battle Hymn of the Republic")
Chloe was a grandma and as sweet as sweet can be,
But she thought that war was wrong and so she went down to DC,
And she joined the Code Pink Troops Home Fast for peace and liberty,
But she ended up in jail.
'Cause freedom isn't freedom if you're on the other side
Of Bush and Cheney's insane war and bloody genocide.
Too many folks have suffered and too many folks have died,
But justice will prevail!
Geoffrey was a soldier who was wounded in Iraq,
And he knows this war is senseless and that thousands won't come back,
So he traveled down to Washington and joined the Code Pink pack.
But he ended up in jail!
They were strangers to each other on that sunny July 4th,
When they saw the marching bands and heard the drumbeats sound for war.
So they held their signs for peace and then they bravely ventured forth,
And they ended up in jail.
The cops moved in and Geoffrey's hands were handcuffed strong and true,
But Chloe knew her Bill of Rights, knew what to say and do:
"If you want to jail the soldier then you'll have to jail me, too!"
So she ended up in jail!
Now, Geoffrey and our Chloe, they are truly patriotic
For standing up against a war that's simply idiotic.
So let's all join together so our troops can come home fast!
Even IF we have to go to jail!
'Cause freedom isn't freedom if you're on the other side
Of Bush and Cheney's insane war and bloody genocide.
So join with Geoffrey and with Chloe in the Troops Home Fast,
And justice will prevail!
|Dear Code Pink,
I joined your fast on July 4, and plan to do it for a month (or until the troops come home, whichever comes first). At the end of one month, I will see how I feel about extending it if necessary.
As a Green Party official in California and as the party's candidate for state Insurance Commissioner in 2006, please feel free to use my name on the list of long-term fasters as you may see fit.
Liaison to the Secretary of State's office
Green Party of California
Portland OR fast went well, with a crowd of thousands (well, we tagged onto the Blues Fest). I think a dozen fasters took turns passing out pink cards about the fast. My favorite moment was when a group of young women, well dressed, looked at us askance. Rachel Joy asked if they would like a flyer. One sniffed, "No. We support our troops." Literally about a minute later a lanky active duty soldier came by and I outreached and he gave a big smile, thumbs up, and took a CodePink handout. The girls were still standing there, jaws dropped. One eventually came over for her flyer. One other self-identified "Just got back" kid said "I just got back and you are doing a good thing."
yours for a nonviolent future,
Tom H. Hastings
Director, Peace & Nonviolence Studies track, Conflict Resolution MA/MS
Portland State University
Whatever the conflict, nonviolence is the solution.
Author: Nonviolent Response to Terrorism
DEAR BRAVE FRIENDS!
This is just amazing! At this very moment when I received the latest newsletter for Troops Home Fast - I had just mailed a quick translation of Diane Wilson's heart strong article in the Houston Chronicle, 3 July, to a Swedish 'audience'!
Evidently, this must be seen as a High Reminder, I should have briefed you much earlier.
On July 4th, I fasted outside the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm, with a sign, flyers, candle and a newly printed t-shirt. There was another rally taking place, but against Gitmo prison camp. Summer in Sweden make this country's peace movement even more lazy...;-) And - as a few American tourists put it: Our country has not yet seen our sons and daughters coming home in a coffin.
I shall send you more materials/photos soon. In the meantime, take a look at the intro-flash at
A one-day Fast on July 4th has now become my fourth day of fasting. And I will continue.
You have certainly put me on the right track! Let's get some more folks on the line - even the Swedes!
in Peace and Solidarity, take care
This is from another person who is soooooo inspired to join you even if O cannot be in WA, DC... or CRawford, TX... yet!... I am a Code Pink member who is united with you here in CA and is already fasting . I send you great love and respect and want you to know what great inspiration you offer the world...LOVE YOU... BE OF GOOD COURAGE MY HEART AND SOUL AND MIND ARE WITH YOU FOREVER AND ALWAYS... how can we join you in Crawford, TX... how many folks can show up there?
Meaghan Simpson Mending
Wheel--Healthy Community Builders
Dear Fasters and other Code Pinkettes,
Just to let you know I was fasting with you in solidarity on July 4th from my home in Massachusetts. It felt so right to be celebrating our nation's birthday in that way. Lots of people I know felt very sad and chastened on that day. Not a day for fun and fireworks, considering what we are doing in Iraq.
MUCH SUPPORT FOR YOU ALL AS YOU CONTINUE YOUR FASTING!!!!
On the 4th, I also observed a gas fast -- didn't drive anywhere in my car or run any gas powered motors. Since using gas is an integral part of our participation in the terrible situation in the Middle East, I am wondering if Code Pink would want to promote a "Less Gas Fast" along with the "Troops Home Fast". Maybe everyone could commit to a "gas fast" for one day a week. If we all did it on the same day, it might feel a bit quieter and cleaner in our towns and cities? Just a thought if you are interested.
Anyway, sending you courage and support!!!!
in lafayette park
under some trees
in front of the white house
l0 - 15 brave men and women
have been fasting
(since july 3rd)
to bring the troops home
this senseless war
some are engaged in a water only fast
others a fruit juice fast
does take a toll
on their health and energy
as the fast grows longer
the heat of the summer saps their strength
your kind words of encouragement and support
will be all they have
as they challenge themselves
the powers that be
to end this war
the fasters are in front of the white house
10 am - 7 pm everyday
visit them during your lunch hour
(there are several thousand fasting around the
they need your support
in stopping this war
the next one
Three of us "fasters" drove from Milwaukee to North Chicago to join up with the end of the Voices for Creative Nonviolence's walk in Illinois. We had a vigil across from the North Chicago VA, followed by a short walk to the Great Lakes Intake Center. Three of the group went onto the property and were arrested. The rest of us held a sidewalk vigil at which names of Iraqi and American soldiers names were read followed by the invocation "Presente". What a great way to spend the third day of our solidarity fast with all of you!
EarthLink Revolves Around You.
Dear Cindy Sheehan,
A few years ago I was in an accident, and my face was disfigured as a result. The only reason I mention this is that I avoid public appearances because of this. For this reason my form of activism has been private and I have not started a public fasting group in support of Troops Home Fast. Instead I privately fasted on July 4 in support of what you are doing. I think my fast was as much a spiritual support for you and Casey than a political one. You remind me so much of my mother and grandmothers. You believe in love, truth and calm and all the things that Casey stands for instead of the lies, greed and hate of the people who are frightened of Casey's memory.
As much as one day of fasting has proven to be difficult for me, I have decided to go beyond the July 4 fast I originally promised and I will fast one day a week until the war is over. At the same time I have to admit that I'm worried. I hope you understand that you don't have to go through a prolonged hunger strike to get people to listen to you. There are millions of people like me, who listen to you. You didn't start the war; you're not responsible for ending it. You are only responsible for speaking your mind. Please remember to be patient and happy and remember that we do listen.