ACTION ALERT: Words and Deeds: Challenging War -- on Billboards and in Baltimore
January 10, 2018 World Beyond War & The Coalition Against US Foreign Military Bases
The US maintains a costly global empire of military bases outside its territory, estimated at almost 1000 (95% of all foreign military bases in the world. The annual cost of these bases to the American taxpayers is approximately $156 billion. The support of US foreign military bases drains funds that can be used to fund human needs and enable our cities and States to provide necessary services for the people. Devoting just 3% of US military spending could put an end to starvation everywhere on Earth.
ACTION ALERT: World Beyond War -- Billboards Around the World World Beyond War
(January 9, 2018) -- World Beyond War has put up a billboard in Baltimore stating that "3% of US military spending could end starvation on earth," and has made the point to the media that a much smaller percentage could heat Baltimore schools, where students are studying without heat. (Read the explanation of the 3% calculation below.)
See more billboards-for-peace pictures here.
Find out where we've put up other billboards here.
Learn about World Beyond War at WorldBeyondWar.org
How Ending War Can End Hunger
In 2008, the United Nations said that $30 billion per year could end hunger on earth, as reported in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and many other outlets.
The Food and Agriculture Organization has not updated that figure since 2008, and has recently told us that such figures do not require much updating.
In a separate report, most recently published in 2015, the same organization provides a figure of $265 billion as the cost per year for 15 years to permanently eliminate extreme poverty, which would eliminate starvation and malnutrition -- a broader project than just preventing starvation one year at a time.
The FAO's spokesperson informed us in an email: "I think it would be incorrect to compare the two figures as the $265 billion has been calculated taking into consideration a number of initiatives including social protection cash transfers aimed at extracting people from extreme poverty and not just hunger."
In 2017, the annual Pentagon base budget, plus war budget, plus nuclear weapons in the Department of Energy, plus Homeland Security and other military spending totaled well over $1 trillion.
This was prior to Congress boosting Pentagon spending by $80 billion in the 2018 budget and passing major increases in nuclear weapons spending, Homeland Security, etc.
3% of $1 trillion = $30 billion.
So, 3% of US military spending could end starvation on earth.
22% of $1.2 trillion = $265 billion.
So, 22 percent of US military spending for 15 years could permanently end extreme poverty globally.
A Conference to Close All US Foreign Military Bases Coalition Against US Foreign Military Bases & World Beyond War & Many Others
BALTIMORE (January 9, 2018) -- World Beyond War and several other organizations are planning a rally on January 12 and a conference January 12 to 14 in Baltimore on the subject of closing US foreign military bases, a move that would save enough money to end starvation on earth and take on several other major projects as well, not to mention benefitting public safety and the natural environment.
Learn more at: http://noforeignbases.org Watch the livestream at: http://worldbeyondwar.org/bases
or at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4yR96dWiTw Times: Jan 12, 2018, 7-10 p.m. ET
Jan 13, 2018, 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. ET
Jan 14, 2018, 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. ET
Coalition Against US Foreign Military Bases Unity Statement
(More than 200 organizations and 1,700 individuals
have signed our Unity Statement)
We, the undersigned peace, justice and environmental organizations, and individuals, endorse the following Points of Unity and commit ourselves to working together by forming a Coalition Against US Foreign Military Bases, with the goal of raising public awareness and organizing non-violent mass resistance against US foreign military bases.
While we may have our differences on other issues, we all agree that US foreign military bases are the principal instruments of imperial global domination and environmental damage through wars of aggression and occupation, and that the closure of US foreign military bases is one of the first necessary steps toward a just, peaceful and sustainable world.
Our belief in the urgency of this necessary step is based on the following facts:
1. While we are opposed to all foreign military bases, we do recognize that the United States maintains the highest number of military bases outside its territory, estimated at almost 1000 (95% of all foreign military bases in the world). Presently, there are US military bases in every Persian Gulf country except Iran.
2. In addition, United States has 19 Naval air carriers (and 15 more planned), each as part of a Carrier Strike Group, composed of roughly 7,500 personnel, and a carrier air wing of 65 to 70 aircraft -- each of which can be considered a floating military base.
3. These bases are centers of aggressive military actions, threats of political and economic expansion, sabotage and espionage, and crimes against local populations. In addition, these military bases are the largest users of fossil fuel in the world, heavily contributing to environmental degradation.
4. The annual cost of these bases to the American taxpayers is approximately $156 billion. The support of US foreign military bases drains funds that can be used to fund human needs and enable our cities and States to provide necessary services for the people.
5. This has made the US a more militarized society and has led to increased tensions between the US and the rest of the world. Stationed throughout the world, almost 1000 in number, US foreign military bases are symbols of the ability of the United States to intrude in the lives of sovereign nations and peoples.
6. Many individual national coalitions -- for example, Okinawa, Italy, Jeju Island Korea, Diego Garcia, Cyprus, Greece, and Germany -- are demanding closure of bases on their territory. The base that the US has illegally occupied the longest, for over a century, is Guantanamo Bay, whose existence constitutes an imposition of the empire and a violation of International Law. Since 1959 the government and people of Cuba have demanded that the government of the US return the Guantanamo territory to Cuba.
US foreign military bases are NOT in defense of US national, or global security. They are the military expression of US intrusion in the lives of sovereign countries on behalf of the dominant financial, political, and military interests of the ruling elite. Whether invited in or not by domestic interests that have agreed to be junior partners, no country, no peoples, no government, can claim to be able to make decisions totally in the interest of their people, with foreign troops on their soil representing interests antagonistic to the national purpose.
We must all unite to actively oppose the existence of US foreign military bases and call for their immediate closure. We invite all forces of peace, social and environmental justice to join us in our renewed effort to achieve this shared goal.
Signed (in alphabetical order):
Bahman Azad, US Peace Council
Ajamu Baraka, Black Alliance for Peace
Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK
Leah Bolger, World Beyond War
Sara Flounders, International Action Center
Bruce Gagnon, Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space
Tarak Kauff, Veterans For Peace
Joe Lombardo, United National Antiwar Coalition
Alfred L. Marder, US Peace Council
George Paz Martin, MLK Justice Coalition; Liberty Tree Foundation*
Nancy Price, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom
Alice Slater, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
David Swanson, World Beyond War
Ann Wright, CODEPINK
Kevin Zeese, Popular Resistance * For identification purposes only.
Conference on US Foreign Military Bases
January 12 - 14, 2018
Learning Commons Town Hall, University of Baltimore
1415 Maryland Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland Organized by the Coalition Against US Foreign Military Bases
Alliance for Democracy
Alliance for Global Justice
Baltimore Nonviolence Center
Bangladesh Bar Council
Black Alliance for Peace
Canadian Peace Congress
Environmentalists Against War
Gaza Freedom Flotilla Coalition
Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space
Granny Peace Brigade -- NYC
Greater Brunswick PeaceWorks
Greater Boston Chapter of the Green-Rainbow Party of Massachusetts
Green Party of the United States
Hands Off Syria Coalition
International Action Center
Labor Fightback Network
Liberty Tree Foundation
MLK Justice Coalition
Mt. Toby Peace & Social concerns
New York Solidarity with Vieques
Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
Pax Christi Baltimore
Peace and Solidarity Organization Srilanka (PASOS)
Roots Of Conflict
Syria Solidarity Movement
Traprock Center for Peace and Justice
United For Peace and Justice (UFPJ)
United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC)
Upstate (NY) Drone Action
US Peace Council
Veterans For Peace
War Resisters League
Women's International League for Peace and Freedom -- US Section
World Beyond War
World Peace Council