America’s Secretary of Defense visited Afghanistan over the weekend. Chuck Hagel expressed confidence in the prospects of Afghanistan’s parliament signing an agreement with the Superpower to allow its troops stay in the country past the announced 2014 withdrawal. Current president, Hamid Karzai is less accommodating, and was himself last week busy shoring up a cooperation pact with neighbouring Iran. While Afghanistan’s ongoing geopolitical intrigues may make for interesting reading and lively conversation amongst international elites cocooned in their rarefied confines, how much difference these deals and rumours of deals will make to the precarious lives led by the country’s long-suffering citizens is where the real debate should be taking place.
Kathy Kelly is a long-time peace and social justice activist who has lived with and been a witness to the suffering and struggles of people brutalized by war and the business of greed from Afghanistan, Iraq, and Palestine, to Central America, Haiti and at home in the United States. She is the recipient of numerous awards for her peace service, including three nominations for the Nobel Peace prize, and has been convicted and spent time in prison for her refusal to allow America’s war-making go unchallenged.
Kelly is a co-founder of Voice in the Wilderness and Voices for Creative Nonviolences; has written too many essays and articles to relate, and is the author of the book, ‘Other Lands Have Dreams: from Baghdad to Pekin Prison.’ Kathy’s currently on the road again, at home in the USA this time, presenting the ‘Duvet Project,’ a local Afghani initiative supplying desperately needed winter comfort to the poorest there, while providing women a chance at a living wage.
Kathy Kelly in the first half.
And; this Friday, Victoria’s Norway House welcomes the seemingly constant-traveller and troubador, David Rovics. Victoria is just one stop on his swing through the Northwest, taking him from home-base Oregon to Seattle, up-island in Tofino, and across the water to Vancouver; this before a planned tour of Ireland in the New Year. Life on the road is nothing new to Rovics; from busking Boston’s subways to travelling the country and the world as a “professional flat-picking rabble-rouser”, David is the musical voice of his volatile times, and ours. In that time, he’s shared impromptu stages at the many Occupy Movement manifestations, and played with just about everyone on the left who can sing on key, (and more than a few who can’t). He’s also a prolific songwriter, publishing and offering up free his catalogue of more than 200 tunes from his website, DavidRovics.com, and is a regularly featured essayist for the premier progressive online publication, CounterPunch.org.
David Rovics, making revolution irresistible in the second half.
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher, and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft will join us at the bottom of the hour to bring us up to speed with some of what’s good to do in and around the city, and beyond too, in the coming week. But first, Kathy Kelly and the horizons and hopes for a change coming.
Chris Cook hosts Gorilla Radio, airing live every Monday, 5-6pm Pacific Time. In Victoria at 101.9FM, and on the internet at: http://cfuv.uvic.ca. He also serves as a contributing editor to the web news site, http://www.pacificfreepress.com. Check out the GR blog at: http://gorillaradioblog.blogspot.ca/