MAPA Update March 16

Dear Friends,

While the St. Patrick’s Day Parade yesterday included two LGBT groups, who had been excluded previously, it continued to exclude Veterans for Peace.  Read the Boston Globe column by Kevin Cullen and the statement by Veterans for Peace.

Please consider attending these exciting events in the coming weeks!

Jeju Island: The Wind is Blowing – Film and Discussion

Korean peace, environmental and religious activists have built a major grassroots campaign and seek international support to stop the construction of the  huge new naval base in South Korea.  The base is key element of the “pivot” strategy to expand US military presence in Asia/Pacific.  Join us to hear touring activists Hee Eun and Paco Michelson speak on the matter and present a screening of the film Gureombi — The Wind is Blowing in opposition of this environmentally-corrosive instance of US militarism.  This event is cosponsored by the American Friends Service Committee and United for Justice with Peace. When: Wednesday, March 18th; 7-9:00 pm.  Where: Friends Meeting House; 5 Longfellow Park; Harvard T; Cambridge.

Fed Up with MBTA Budget & Service Cuts? There Is an Alternative!

PeoplesBudgetLogo.2015Congress has cut funds for MBTA operations and expansion, and is poised to cut transportation programs even more next week.  The Congressional Progressive Caucus’ People’s Budget would increase funding for the MBTA and other transportation needs, and for jobs, education, housing, and the environ­ment.  It would cut excessive military spending and close corporate tax loopholes, and it will be voted on the week of March 23.  Join Budget for All on Friday morning as we call on Congress to vote for the People’s Budget, leaflet commuters, and sing “The Trains That never Returned“!

Vincent Intondi: African Americans Against the Bomb

Vincent Intondi African Americans Against the BombAfrican Americans Against the Bomb tells the compelling story of those black activists who fought for nuclear disarmament by connecting the nuclear issue with the fight for racial equality.  From early on, blacks in America saw the use of atomic bombs as a racial issue, asking why such enormous resources were being spent building nuclear arms instead of being used to improve impoverished communities. Black activists’ fears that race played a role in the decision to deploy atomic bombs only increased when the U.S. threatened to use nuclear weapons in Korea in the 1950s and Vietnam a decade later.  

Vincent Intondi will speak at three events:

Saturday, March 21: Nuclear Weapons and the Black Freedom Movement. Public forum hosted by Cambridge City Councilors Denise Simmons, Dennis Carlone and Nadeem Mazen, sponsors of a nuclear disarmament resolution unanimously adopted by the nine members of the Cambridge City Council. Organized by Massachusetts Peace Action, cosponsored by the Cambridge Peace Commission. Event will be held in the Community Room, Cambridge Public Library, Community Room, 2pm.

Saturday, March 21: Eliminate Nuclear Weapons, Abolish War, Embrace Humanity. Welcome the Walk for a New Spring, Cambridge Friends Meeting, 5 Longfellow Park; potluck 6pm, program 7pm.

Sunday, March 22: From Vietnam to Dorchester to the United Nations: Responses to Violence & Oppression. Gathering and interfaith witness with Walk for a New Spring members, Tina Chery and Vincent Intondi. Old South Church, 645 Boylston St., Boston. 1pm.

Walk for a New Spring

Peace Walkers With the slogan “Eliminate Nuclear Weapons – Abolish War – Embrace Humanity”, the walkers of the Leverett Peace Pagoda will travel 44 days from Leverett, MA to Washington, DC and finally to New York City for the Peace & Planet mobilization on April 26.    

In Boston/Cambridge, the Walkers will join Vincent Intondi on Saturday, March 21 for Eliminate Nuclear Weapons, Abolish War, Embrace Humanity, at Cambridge Friends Meeting, 5 Longfellow Park; potluck 6pm, program 7pm; and on Sunday, March 22 for From Vietnam to Dorchester to the United Nations: Responses to Violence & Oppression, a gathering and interfaith witness with Walk for a New Spring, and Tina Chery. Old South Church, 645 Boylston St. 1pm.   On Monday morning they will lead a walk from Boston City Hall to the State House steps for a press conference; 10am.    See the complete schedule.

Facing the Ongoing Nakba

Join the Nakba Education Project for a discussion on the ongoing Nakba affecting Palestinians both in Palestine and in the diaspora. Speakers from Badil Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights will provide a historical overview of the Nakba and the Right of Return, the forcible displacement of Palestinians since before 1948 and continuing today, and the practicalities of return for refugees.  Jewish Voice for Peace Boston, American Jews For A Just Peace, First Baptist Church in Jamaica Plain. When: Sunday, March 22nd; 4-6:00 pm.  Where: First Baptist Church in Jamaica Plain; 633 Centre St; Jamaica Plain.

Elaine Scarry Discusses Thermonuclear Monarchy: Choosing Between Democracy and Doom

When: March 26th; 7:30 pm Where: Unitarian Universalists of Pittsfield (Mass.); 175 Wendell Ave, Pittsfield, MA 01201

Note: For those who may find it more convenient, Elaine Scarry will also give a similar presentation on the same day, Thursday, March 26, 2015, in the Susan B. Anthony Lounge at BCC at 12:15 p.m.

Berkshire Citizens for Peace and Justice presents Elaine Scarry, Walter M. Cabot Professor of Aesthetics and the General Theory of Value at Harvard College will discuss her new book, Thermonuclear Monarchy: Choosing Between Democracy and Doom.

Scarry is the author of eight books, most recently Thermonuclear Monarchy. In it, she contends that nuclear weapons eliminate the citizenry and the legislature from the sphere of decision-making about war. Scarry shows how elements of the US Constitution can be used as tools to abolish nuclear weapons.

Scarry’s presentation could not be more timely. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and on April 24-26 the U.N. will host a nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference. At this time, many NGOs and peace movement activists are calling on nuclear weapon states to fulfill the obligation of nuclear disarmament under Article 6 of the Nonproliferation Treaty and implement the agreements of the 2010 NPT Review Conference in order to open up the way leading to a total ban and the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Scarry’s highly informed remarks offer a first class preparation for understanding the gravity of the issues to be dealt with at the coming Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference where so much hangs in the balance in a world with an abundance of planet- threatening nuclear weapons.


Resistance to the Vietnam War – The History the Pentagon Does Not Want You to Know or Remember

End the month by joining us for an action-packed, day-long conference about the people’s history of the Vietnam War on the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Teach-Ins.  Explore diverse perspectives and forms of resistance both during and since this time through a variety of panels and discussions, including distinguished speakers such as Noam Chomsky, Louise Bruyn, and Carl Davidson.  Registration is $5 in advance, $10 at the door.  Register ahead of time here.  When: Saturday, March 28th; 10:00 am – 4:30 pm. Where: MIT Stata Center; 32 Vassar St; Cambridge.

Vocal Chamber Music in Times of War and Peace

Music for Peace presents Vocal Chamber Music in Times of War and Peace, a unique collection of pieces assembled especially for Peace Action by noted mezzo-soprano D’Anna Fortunato. When: Saturday, April 11th; 7:30 pm Cost: $10 to $35


D’Anna Fortunato, Mezzo-soprano, featured artist
Mana Tokuno, Piano
Ina Zdorovetchi, Harp
Linda Toote, Flute
Michelle La Course, Viola

The concert will include:

  • Earl Kim, Now and Then in 5 Movements for Voice, Flute, Viola and Harp
  • Mohammed Fairouz, Refugee Blues (Boston Premiere) for Voice and Piano
  • Benjamin Britten, 4 Songs for Voice and Piano
  • Reynaldo Hahn, Romanesque Trio for Flute, Viola and Harp
  • Claude Debussy, 3 songs including the haunting Nous n’avons plus de Maison, for Voice and Piano 
  • Maurice Ravel, 5 Greek Folksongs for Voice and Harp

Benefits Massachusetts Peace Action Education Fund; part of the Music for Peace Series. Tickets $25 in advance for Mass. Peace Action members, $35 for non-members, $10 for students, $35 at the door. Series of 3 concerts: member $65, non-member $80, student $25.  Supporters donate $250 and receive two tickets and priority seating.

Write check to “Massachusetts Peace Action Education Fund” and mail to 11 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 or purchase online.

The audience is invited to join the musicians and Peace Action members at a reception after the concert.


Tax Day: A Time to Speak up for our Tax and Budget Priorities

When: April 11; 12:30 pm – 4:00 pm

Where: Old South Church; 645 Boylston Street,  Boston MA 02116

Save the Date!

Whether we are working for decent jobs, affordable housing, racial justice, labor rights, sanity on climate change, protecting social security, education, health care, criminal justice reform, economic rights, fair taxes, an end to poverty and hunger, abolishing nuclear weapons, stopping the drone wars, or getting all U.S. troops home from Afghanistan – we all have a stake in the budget debates now going on in Washington.

This year, the prognosis in Washington is especially dire given that Republicans control both houses of Congress and are sharpening their knives to cut vital programs the country needs. At the same time both Congress and the President are calling for increasing the Pentagon budget, going to war and spending billions to upgrade our vast nuclear weapons capability. Meanwhile the highest income groups and corporate tax cheats merrily go their way instead of paying their fair share.

But there are voices everywhere in the country speaking up for common sense, peace, public programs that our families need, and a country we can be proud of. On Tax Day we will join our voices to theirs and insist on budget priorities and tax policies that match our values.

Join a protest rally at a corporate tax cheat at 12:30, followed by an indoor forum and speak out at 2:00 which will be addressed by citizen groups, ordinary people, and elected officials in support of a Budget for All!

Sponsored by the Budget for All! Coalition


Peace and Planet: Mobilizing for a Nuclear Free, Just, and Sustainable World – April 24-26, New York City

The International Peace & Planet Conference, to be held on the eve of the NPT Review Conference, is being organized on the basis of five themes: nuclear weapons abolition, Move the Money (cutting military spending to prevent wars and fund essential human needs), climate change and environmental justice, the new era of global military tensions and wars, and racism and militarism.  Through plenaries and workshops, the Conference Program will serve to share information and analyses, build and further integrate our movements for the longer term, and increase our impact on the NPT Review Conference. In addition to the five themes, a youth track is being organized. Register here.  When: April 24-25.  Where: Cooper Union, New York City.

After the two-day conference, the day before the 2015 NPT Review Conference begins, we will gather by the thousands in the streets of New York City for an international rally and march to the United Nations. On the streets and in front of the U.N., activists from around the world – with 2,000 from Japan, including Hibakusha (survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki) – will make our demands for a nuclear-free world, for racial, economic, social, and environmental justice, and for an end to military crises and wars.  With our numbers, speeches, signs, costumes, chants, songs, hope, creativity, and humor we’ll impact the diplomats and political leaders in New York for the NPT Review Conference and build and reinforce our movements.  The march will end with the presentation of millions of nuclear weapons abolition petition signatures to U.N. officials. Reserve your bus ticket now; departures from Alewife or Riverside MBTA stations.  Interfaith convocation 11:30 am; rally 12 noon; march 1pm; peace festival, Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, 3pm.

More information:


Can’t make it to New York?  Organize a group to participate in the Global Peace Wave!

A Video & Poster contest with cash prizes is open to students and youth under 24 years.  

Deadline: April 1 

Don’t miss out on any of these unique and informative opportunities for activism, learning, and change.  We hope to see you at one or, hopefully, many of these events!