Sep 222014

Film—Dirty Wars: The World is A Battlefield

Repeat showing of film Dirty Wars: The World is A Battlefield by Jeremy Scahill and Community Conversation: Nonviolence in an Aggressive Age of Dirty Wars
Time: Monday, Sept 29, 6:30pm
Location: Lewis and Clark Library, Helena, 6:30 pm

Jeremy Scahill’s film Dirty Wars — is an indictment of the “War on Terror” and war crimes in covert operations by JSOC (Joint Special Operations Command) and the CIA under Cheney/Bush and Obama.

Also see Jeremy Scahill’s book Dirty Wars available at the Helena library (355.0097 S) and revelations about JSOC by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh.

Film—A Force More Powerful, Part 1

Showing of Part 1 of Film A Force More Powerful: Nonviolent Power in Action and Celebration of Gandhi’s Birthday and International Nonviolence Day
Time: Thursday, Oct 2, 6:30pm
Location: At the Lewis and Clark Library in Helena, 6:30 pm

A Force More Powerful explores how popular movements battled entrenched regimes and military forces with unconventional weapons like boycotts, strikes, and demonstrations. Acts of civil resistance helped subvert the operations of government, and direct intervention in the form of sit-ins, nonviolent sabotage, and blockades frustrated many rulers’ efforts to suppress people.

The historical results were massive: tyrants toppled, governments overthrown, occupying armies impeded, and political systems shattered. Entire societies were transformed, suddenly or gradually, as nonviolent resistance destroyed the repressor’s ability to control events.

The story begins in 1907 with a young Mohandas Gandhi, the most influential leader in the history of civil resistance, as he rouses fellow Indians in South Africa to a nonviolent struggle against racial oppression. The series recounts Gandhi’s civil disobedience campaign against the British in India; the sit-ins and boycotts that desegregated downtown Nashville, Tennessee; the nonviolent campaign against apartheid in South Africa; Danish resistance to the Nazis in World War II; the rise of Solidarity in Poland; and the momentous victory for democracy in Chile.

The greatest misconception about conflict is that violence is the ultimate form of power; but in conflict after conflict throughout the 20th century, people have proven otherwise. At a time when violence is still too often deployed, A Force More Powerful dramatizes how ordinary people throughout the world, working against all kinds of opponents, have taken up nonviolent weapons and prevailed.

A Force More Powerful also introduces several extraordinary, but largely unknown, individuals who drove these great events forward.

More about Campaign Nonviolence and Pace e Bene.

Sep 102014

Campaign Nonviolence is a long-term movement to build a culture of peace by mainstreaming active nonviolence and by joining the enduring, nonviolent struggle to abolish war, end poverty, reverse climate change, and challenge all violence. Campaign Nonviolence invites you to practice nonviolence toward yourself, toward all others, and toward the world!

Sign the Campaign Nonviolence Pledge and join this new movement to mainstream active nonviolence and to foster a world free from war, poverty and the climate crisis.

Events are planned nationally September 21-27.

Great Falls Events

Showing of Part 1 of A Force More Powerful
Time: Tuesday, September 23, 6pm
Location: Great Falls Public Library, small meeting room in the basement
Showing of Part 2 of A Force More Powerful
Time: Wednesday, September 24, 6pm
Location: Great Falls Public Library, small meeting room in the basement
People in Blue on the sidewalk in front of the Great Falls Civic Center
Time: Saturday, September 27, 9-11am
Location: Intersection of Central Avenue and Park Drive

The People in Blue event is based on Women in Black. Participants can speak, and Hester Dillon will have information about Campaign Nonviolence to share with those who are interested. We’ll stay in on the sidewalk in front of the Civic Center; we will not be entering the Farmers’ Market.

Participants are urged to wear a blue scarf or bracelet to symbolize the blue sky that is above us all. You can make your own scarf or purchase one.

Bring a sign advocating nonviolence if you like.

Aug 212014
Helena Community Dialogues: Gaza Attacks, Justice for Palestine, Israel’s Ongoing Military Occupation of Palestine

Monday, August 25

Thursday, August 28

More . . .

Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, August 25 at 7pm, Helena Library

Talk by Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb: A Rabbi Speaks Out Against Israel’s Attacks on Gaza and Against the Israeli Occupation of Palestinian Territory (speaking via Skype) Lynn Gottlieb is founder and coordinator of Shomer Shalom Network for Jewish Nonviolence. Author of She Who Dwells Within: A Feminist Vision of Renewed Judaism, Lynn Gottlieb celebrates her 42th year in rabbinic service in 2014. Gottlieb lives in Berkeley, California, and is a storyteller, author, and peace activist who has received several human rights awards. Her writing appears in more than 40 publications, and she has performed her work throughout the world. She is cofounder of the Muslim-Jewish Peacewalk and was a founding elder of The Community of Living Traditions. According to her website:
Rabbi Gottlieb currently works with the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR, of which Helena SERPAJ has been a local chapter since 1994) as coordinator of the Interfaith Peacewalks project, a co-leader of Artist Delegations to Palestine, and as a contributing editor to Fellowship magazine. Lynn’s newest book is Trail Guide to the Torah of Nonviolence (2013, in French and English). Lynn Gottlieb’s Facebook page:
From Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb’s website:
Gottlieb is a pioneer feminist rabbi, storyteller, percussionist, peace educator, writer, ceremonialist, community activist and clown. She is deeply committed to a life grounded in the creativity, joy and wisdom of the Torah (teachings) of Nonviolence. Her journey includes life long activism with The Fellowship of Reconciliation and ongoing pursuit of Israeli Palestinian conflict transformation based on principles of active nonviolence. Lynn served as a pulpit rabbi from 1973 to 1980 with Temple Beth Or of the Deaf and Mishkan, An Experimental Shul in NY and from 1981 to 2005 with Congregation Nahalat Shalom in Albuquerque, NM which she co-founded. Since 1964, Lynn has engaged in multifaith, intergenerational and multicultural organizing around issues of economic and racial justice, gender justice and ‘the demilitarization of land and life’. Lynn’s love of Jewish cultural and spiritual arts embodies her way of being Jewish in the world. The most common request Lynn hears? “Tell me a story!”
See Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb’s prayer for Gaza and Israel, a prayer that speaks the hearts of many who care about Gaza, Palestine and Israel.

Journalist Alison Weir, August 28 at 7pm, Helena Library

Journalist Alison Weir leads a Dialogue on the Gaza Attacks by Israel and war and media coverage. Alison Weir is founder of If Americans Knew and president of Council for the National Interest. If Americans Knew is an independent research and information-dissemination institute, with particular focus on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Dec 102013

“The Culture of Life”
By Nelsa Curbelo, General Coordinator for SERPAJ (Servicio Paz y Justicia) in Latin America (after whom Helena SERPAJ is named)

The possibility of peace and justice is linked to our ability to educate not just the thoughts but also the heart and the feelings; and in our ability to believe in the poor as capable of creating a different world. That is where history will be played out.

The culture of death takes the point of view of the military, the powerful, the triumphant.

The culture of life, it seems to me, takes the point of view of the defeated ones. It lives, it is nourished by their blood, but also by their willingness to live and to make change…

The path lies before us. Non-violence means living right now the vision of what we want in the end… Non-violence is a relentless persistence to hear the immense cry of the people and not close ourselves off to that. From inside; from our guts; from our womb, as a mother who is carrying a child. And to respond with all the compassion, creativity and the love of which we’re capable. The problem is that we aren’t aware of all this life that is pushing to break out… Seek the strength that will enable us to move forward to make the personal changes that will in turn allow us to make the global changes. In this way we will build a society based on justice, fraternity, and solidarity among all people.