’s Video Contest: Playback for Peace

During our next pledge drive, we would like to feature videos made by our readers on what ten years of war means to them. For more information, please contact Angela Keaton at or call 1-323-512-7095. The top 10 videos will be selected by our staff. Deadline is Tuesday November 1.

To kick off the contest, James Cox of Peace, Freedom and Prosperity created and narrated AntiWar: 10 Years In The Middle East.

9 thoughts on “’s Video Contest: Playback for Peace”

  1. I do not advocate violence, killing, or war. I do not claim that war may be a solution to any problem. I admit that I am not well enough informed about the current wars in the middle-east to make an argument for or against them. I do, however, disagree with some of he statements in this video. I am inclined to question how war is the "suppression of free speech." If war did suppress free speech, how could anyone create an anti war video, and post it online for the public to view? I can see how one might view the war as the "imposition of slavery." The definition that I found for the word slave is "A person who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them." I'm not sure If signing up for military service makes the volunteer legal property of anyone, but I would argue that the act of volunteering makes the entire process of military service voluntary. I do not associate slave labor with voluntary action. I also disagree to some extent that "war is goading the public to hate foreign people, and races." I would sooner assume that hate of foreign people and races comes from misinformation, stereotypes, and ignorance, before it comes from war itself. However, misinformation and stereotypes usually come with war. Also, I have not done any research on the causes of hatred for foreign people and races. without research I have no evidence. Once again I do not advocate war or violence, I just question the validity of some of the statements in this video. I am a student, and I am open to new perspectives. If evidence is provided to support any of the claims in question I would happily change my stance.

  2. I was once asked why I don't participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I'll be there.
    Mother Teresa

  3. Sorry, but that was really tacky and it will only serve to antagonize people rather than win them to our side.

  4. I haven't time for a full reply to all your points, but here are a few impromptu thoughts:

    1.) Conscription, which is indeed a species of slavery, is not *currently* used by the US to raise and augment military forces, but it has been used extensively in the past, and as recently as the Vietnam War. Moreover, the Selective Service Act remains on the books—and so still remains an option. If you're a male US resident over eighteen years of age, you've already discovered this. And it's hardly something you should feel complacent about.

    2.) Conscription is not the only species of slavery associated with war. Slavery—as Americans of the Revolutionary generation understood the term when they pointed to "slavery" as the inevitable outcome of British imperial policy in the colonies—is the denial of freedom; it is the erosion or outright destruction of one's natural or traditional rights. And states always use war—and the vast mobilization of resources, consolidation of public opinion and squelching of dissent it requires—as an excuse to crack down on the liberties of their citizens. The "War on Terror" has been no exception. In the name of fighting this open-ended conflict against an ill-defined enemy, the Federal government has attacked the liberties of its citizens in dramatic, and perhaps irreversible, ways. Rights once considered inviolable—due process, habeas corpus, security against unreasonable searches and seizures—have given way to warrantless surveillance, indefinite detention, TSA manhandling and even the Obama administration's recent claim that it has the right to kill anyone without trial, US citizens included. You may not *feel* like human chattel at the moment, but these developments are ominous signposts on the road to abject servitude; for anyone who may be freely spied upon, humiliatingly frisked and/or irradiated before being permitted to travel, indefinitely detained and even sentenced to death by secret executive fiat is not in any meaningful sense free. (NB: Another open-ended war—the "War on Drugs"—has also played an important role in this process. See, for instance, what may amount to the last nail in the coffin of the Fourth Amendment:… ).

    3. Further, the fruits of your labor are pillaged to pay for wars (and other things) you may not agree with—and may even find abhorrent. This is accomplished both by direct taxation and by such indirect taxes as purposeful monetary inflation. Unless you have an in with the Military-Industrial Complex, this can only make you poorer. And there is certainly nothing "VOLUNTARY" about this impoverishment.

    4.) Home-front censorship is a perennial feature of warfare. A careful survey of world—and, of course, US—history on this point will disabuse you of any notion that it has ever been otherwise. Because of the ongoing revolution in mass telecommunications, however, censorship has become a somewhat more politically and technically complex matter; it now requires a subtler touch. On the whole, the current goal of the US regime is to marginalize—not quash—dissent. And this is largely accomplished by a pro-establishment mainstream media and a predominately pro-establishment academy, both made possible by the deep penetration of civil society by the state. These "kept" institutions seek to exclude or minimize the exposure time of dissenting viewpoints, even as they give free airing to establishment doctrines and positions.

    I think that this system is probably doomed by the Internet and the unprecedented flow of information it facilitates. Ultimately, this might mean a return to more traditionally repressive means of censorship. In any case, we have already seen disturbing indications of the enduring presence of a "traditionalist" mindset in the US government's handling of Bradley Manning, in recent official claims that the Internet is a "national security" concern in dire need of a presidential "kill switch," and in episodes like the following:

  5. 5.) There was no sharia law hysteria prior to the current crop of wars; there were no King Hearings; and your average American had no contact with the work of such hate-peddlers as Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer. Islamophobia and prejudice against near eastern peoples are certainly on the rise in the US—and if this is largely an outcome of "misinformation," then that misinformation and its dissemination are products and functions of war and the warfare state. You seem to be trying to make neat distinctions between the wars "over there" and American society—and American minds—at home, when, in reality, no such neat distinctions exist.

    6.) It's time to become better informed. The first step is to start hanging around here (at ), keeping abreast of headlines and reading (and thinking about) columns. The next step is to start seeking historical context—-and especially an understanding of the ways in which war and state power intersect. An excellent starting point for such study is the following bibliographical essay, by libertarian historian Joseph Stromberg:….

    (The readings recommended in sections XVI and XVII may be of immediate interest to you.)

    If you decide to pursue study on this front, I wish you the best of luck. Your worldview will never be the same.

  6. I toattly the way come check out my face book at peece mayker, it is talking about war mybe you could comment and tell me what you think and maybe even add me as a friend

  7. I was once asked why I don't participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I'll be there.

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