In the News

Is the Capitol crackdown fading?

"Capitol Police appear to have scaled back their crackdown on the Solidarity Singers, the group of lunchtime protesters who gather four times a week in the Capitol rotunda (and one day outside) to lampoon Republicans through song," wrote reporter Steve Elbow in the Capital Times.

Since its humble beginnings in March 2011, the Solidarity Sing-along has maintained a daily presence in the People's House, in support of labor and civil rights.  Initially launched by WNPJ, the Sing-along is now a member group.

Wisconsinites report on visit to Gaza

"Picture this normal scene: Teenage boys are playing soccer in front of their house on a sunny day in November. Just one problem: These boys live in the Gaza Strip. Suddenly a 13-year-old drops bleeding to the ground, shot by an Israeli soldier in a helicopter," write Michele Bahl and Tsela Barr, members of the Madison-Rafah Sister City Project, a WNPJ member group.

They were in the Gaza Strip as part of an Interfaith Peace Builders' delegation as Israel was building up to "Operation Pillar of Cloud," which left 160 Palestinians dead and over 1000 injured.  Bahl and Barr urged "Republicans and Democrats alike to stop pouring billions of our tax money into the Israeli military machine which clearly has committed human rights abuses with U.S.-supplied weapons. The U.S. and Israel must stop trying to solve a political problem through military force, end the siege of Gaza, and stop sabotaging all efforts to negotiate a just solution in accordance with international law."

The struggle for land rights near the Gaza border

Yesterday in al-Faraheen, Gaza, Israeli Occupation Forces shot and wounded an unarmed 22 year old farmer, Mohammed Qdeih, from behind. Mohamed and nine others went out to their fields in the early afternoon, walking approximately 250 meters from the Israeli border.  Within minutes, two heavily armed Israeli military jeeps rushed to the security fence.  They issued a warning for the farmers and residents to leave the area and shortly thereafter the Palestinians, intimidated by the heavy military presence, began to head back to the village of Abasan.  The soldiers were not satisfied and opened fire, piercing Mohamed’s right arm from the backside. Israeli forces continued to shoot rounds of live ammunition while Mohamed and the others frantically evacuated and waited for an ambulance. (Photo of Ahmed and Mohammed Qdeih) To learn more about this event, written by Josh Brollier of www.vcnv.org, click on 'read more'...

WNPJ member group WAVE works to end gun violence

End gun violence. No one should ever have to fear for their safety when they go to temple, church, school, catch a movie, or visit their member of Congress.

The time to act is now. Sign up to find out what you can do.

Ashland forum condemns mountaintop removal in Appalachia and Wisconsin

On December 6, the Mining Impact Coalition hosted a forum at the Northland College Alvord Theater with Appalachian mining activist Bob Kincaid, Bad River Tribal Chair Mike Wiggins, and Jessica Koski from the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community in Michigan. All three speakers gave powerful testimony about how damaging metallic mining is to the health, economy, and water of the communities that are impacted. Kincaid pointed out that 4,000 people a year die from causes related to mining in Appalachia, and iron mining in Wisconsin would have similar effects here.

Refusing to acquiesce in Gaza

Gaza City-The past few days have been harrowing, yet still deeply inspiring in Gaza as people in the strip must carry on with their lives after the Israeli army’s deadly 8 day offensive operation “Pillar of Cloud” which killed at least 160 Palestinians and left over 1000 wounded, many of them severely. To “carry on” in Gaza does not mean returning to predictable routines or a reasonable set of expectations of calmness in what amounts to everyday life in most parts of the world. This is exceptionally true for Palestinian fishermen who return to the daily struggle with the Israeli Navy to fish in waters that are rightfully theirs.  This story was submitted 11/30 by Joshua Brollier, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence (vcnv.org). The photo is of Ahmed Suleman Ateya standing next to his destroyed home in Gaza [Photo-Johnny Barber]. Read more below......

Give thanks for cranberries - stop frac sand mining!

As Wisconsin families plan for Thanksgiving dinners, they don't know the boom in silica sand mining here for hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") elsewhere threatens our cranberry bogs, writes dairy farmer and vice-president of Family Farm Defenders Joel Greeno in the Capital Times.

"In addition to the loss of productive farmland, fracking uses huge amounts of water. Cranberry bogs are meticulously designed to take advantage of the water stored in the marshes, which is necessary for harvesting, and growers generally set aside seven acres of land for every acre planted to store this water. Marshes surrounded by sand pits will eventually lose water as it seeps into the pits, leaving berry growers high and dry."

Kewaunee reactor's toxic legacy

By mid-2013, the Kewaunee nuclear reactor near Green Bay will be shuttered by its owner, Virginia-based Dominion Resources.  But its toxic legacy will be far from over.

"Initial shutdown expenses for the creaking, leaking 39-year-old monster — waste management and reactor dismantling, containerizing and transporting to dump sites — are roughly predictable," John LaForge of Nukewatch, a WNPJ member group, writes in the Capital Times.

"Dominion, which bought Kewaunee in 2005 for $220 million, will 'record a $281 million charge in (2013’s) third quarter related to the closing and decommissioning.' But that’s just the earnest money. Literally endless expenditures will be required to keep Kewaunee’s radioactive wastes contained, monitored and out of drinking water for the length of time the federal appeals courts have declared is the required minimum — 300,000 years."

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