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Voices for Peace
By Paul Richard Harris, Axis of Logic
Axis of Logic
Friday, Oct 27, 2017

Voices for Peace
War, Resistance and America’s Quest for Full Spectrum Dominance

T.J. Coles, editor, Clairview Books Ltd., 2017 ISBN 978-1-905570-89-8

Axis of Logic columnist T.J. Coles has done it again. We reviewed his three previous books (here, here, and here) but this one is a little different. Here, he has gathered together original works and words from some of today’s leading thinkers, activists, and journalists.

Coles opens the book with his own editorial comments noting that this publication is intended to bring together works by the various notables to focus on a common theme: Peace, and why we don’t have it.

His introduction (Bad News, Good News) notes that the publishing of the book at this time coincides with three historical commemorations – all of them unpleasant reminders of our failure as a species to live up to the star billing we give ourselves as the epitome of the evolutionary cycle. We are, we claim, the top of the food chain and the best that the world has to offer. It is, naturally, disappointing that our behaviour demonstrates over and again how easily we fool ourselves.

So the historical events that Coles mentions are:
  • The 50th anniversary of the Israeli conquest of the remaining Palestinian territories (West Bank and Gaza), that they grabbed in 1967, along with the Syrian Golan Heights and Egyptian Sinai (they abandoned Sinai in 1982)
  • The centenary of the Balfour Declaration, that odious document that promised a homeland for Jews [note this was not meant to be generous, it was meant to get the Jews the hell out of Britain – prh]
  • The 70th anniversary of the founding of the state of Israel that resulted in the expulsion of 700,000 Palestinians from their homes.
The various writers explore how the Middle East is used by other powers – most often Britain or the United States – to achieve short-term goals, often unrelated to the region at all.

Of course, no collection like this would be complete without reference to the current Commander-in-Chief of the US, Donald John Trump. As one would expect, the world became a much more complicated place with the arrival of Mr Trump. There are those who insist he is crazy – and perhaps he is – but crazy or not, he has a tremendous influence on what occurs in the world. And since this book deals with ‘voices for peace’, it would be hard to ignore this man and how much his presence makes the seeking of peace far more difficult than it was, perhaps more difficult than it ever has been.

Coles includes interviews he conducted himself – one with John Pilger, the renowned Australian filmmaker, and one with Noam Chomsky, Professor Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Pilger also contributes two essays – one deals directly with Donald Trump, the other concerns the terrorist attacks earlier this year in Manchester.

Also contributing a pair of essays each are Brian Terrell and Kathy Kelly. Terrell is a writer, activist, and researcher living in rural Iowa. He volunteers with Voices for Creative Non-Violence, which he also coordinates. Kelly has been a war-tax refuser since 1990 and has travelled the world as a peace activist, often finding herself in jail for her efforts. She also is a coordinator for Voices for Creative Non-Violence and the co-founder of Voices in the Wilderness – a campaign designed to eliminate brutal sanctions against Iraq imposed by Britain and the US.

Bruce K. Gagnon is the coordinator and co-founder of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Energy in Space. In this volume he writes about the weaponization of Space.

Dr Cynthia McKinney served in the state legislature of Georgia for 4 years before being elected to the United States Congress where she served for 12 years. In this book, she writes about the ‘Truth movement’ as related to John F Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr., but more recently what has arisen after the Charlie Hebdo killings in France. She writes that the official narrative of governments are often greatly at odds with what individual researchers discover – she calls this research ‘Making Sense of the Nonsensical.’

Robin Ramsay was a new name for me. He is the author of numerous books and pamphlets and is the co-founder of Lobster Magazine which focuses greatly on the ‘Deep State’. Some of Lobster’s articles and issues are available for free download.

Rounding out the line-up is Ilan Pappé, the well-known scholar who writes about modern Israel. Dr Pappé founded and directed the Academic Institute for Peace in Givat Haviva, Israel. He is a fierce critic of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.

Dr Coles has gathered together an excellent cast of contributors. While none of the entries in this book would give rise to elation, the message these writers bring does help give rise to hope. It is through the work of all these writers, including Coles himself, that there remains some chance for mankind to survive its own stupidity.

As ever, another T.J. Coles book that I don't hesitate to recommend highly.

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