Archive for December, 2005

Students Denounce Pentagon Surveillance of of Counter-Recruitment Activities

December 14, 2005

From the Campus Antiwar Network:

    SANTA CRUZ, CA – According to a document obtained by
    NBC News, the Pentagon has been spying on 1,500
    “suspicious incidents,” including anti-war and
    counter-recruitment meetings and actions
    throughout
    the nation over the past 10-month period. Among the
    first pages of more than 400 released, 10 college
    anti-war protests were listed, including UC Santa Cruz
    Students Against War (SAW)’s counter-recruitment
    protest of April 5, 2005, which was the only one to be
    labeled both credible and a “threat.”

    Despite having dealt with both undercover police and
    university agents involved in the acts of surveillance
    and repression, the news came as a little shock to
    many SAW members, reaffirming long-held beliefs about
    the nature of the U.S. military. 3rd year student Jen
    Low noted the hypocrisy of the government’s messaging,
    reminding us that, "the notion of the Pentagon spying
    on peaceful protesters is a major threat to the
    freedoms that they claim to protect."

    While the Department of Defense has not commented on
    the allegations, student activists assert that the
    rising unpopularity of the Iraq War and the inability
    of military recruiters to meet their quotas make the
    counter-recruitment movement a strong candidate for
    repression by a “homeland security” apparatus run
    amok.

    This repression does not end with the surveillance
    from the Federal government. In fact, local officials
    and college campuses have also been monitoring and
    repressing anti-war and counter-recruitment
    activities. In August, community members of the
    Pennsylvania Organizing Group (POG) peacefully
    protesting at a military recruiting center near the
    University of Pittsburg were violently attacked by
    police. Most recently, at Hampton University in
    Virginia, students disseminating information against
    military recruiters on campus were threatened with
    expulsion. Other schools that have witnessed incidents
    of extreme repression against student activists
    include the University of Wisconsin – Madison, Kent
    State, Harold Washington College, Holyoke Community
    College, George Mason University, San Francisco State
    University, City College of New York, and Seattle
    Central Community College.

    UC Santa Cruz is widely known to have one of the
    largest antiwar and counter-recruitment movements in
    the country. On April 5, 2005 over 300 students
    marched into a campus job fair, occupying the building
    and holding a teach-in until all military recruiters
    left. On October 18, 2005, over 200 students rallied
    outside of another job fair, while two dozen UCSC
    students blocked recruiters on the inside by engaging
    in a ‘Queer Kiss-In’ to protest discriminatory
    military recruitment.

Protests tied to Supreme Court case

December 5, 2005

December 6 is a national counter-recruitment day of action connected to the Supreme Court’s hearing of FAIR v Rumsfeld. The case will determine the constitutionality of the "Solomon Amendment" that allows the federal government to cut off funds to schools that bar military recruitment on their campuses.

CAN has gathered an impressive list of endorsers for its call to action, inlcuding Cindy Sheehan, Howard Zinn, Dahr Jamail, war resisters Pablo Paredes and Camilo Mejia, and the entire Berkeley, CA, city council. In New York, the plan is to protest at the military recruiting station next to the Borough of Manhattan Community College (199 Chamber St.) at noon.

“Bring in 10 people and you can earn $20,000″

December 2, 2005

From USA Today:

    The Army National Guard, battling a falloff in recruiting, is offering troops a finder’s fee for lining up new soldiers. The Guard Recruiter Assistant Program, launched this week in five states, offers National Guard members $1,000 for enlisting a recruit and another $1,000 when the prospect shows up for basic training. “Bring in 10 people and you can earn $20,000,” says Lt. Col. Mike Jones, deputy division chief for recruiting and retention at the National Guard Bureau.