Left in the Dark: $2 Trillion and Counting…

In the early hours of Friday morning, US troops departed Bagram Air Force base in Afghanistan. They turned off the electricity and lights before leaving; it appears as though members of the Afghan government were left in the dark about the departure of US troops. Biden has been clear about a formal departure on September 11th of this year but with the definitive closure of the airbase last week, the US has completed 90% of the troop withdrawal.  In the New York Times article The Salvaged Relics of a Very Long War: Shops Near Vacated Afghanistan Base Sell Vestiges of US Presence describes how Bagram, surrounded by grape vineyards, has an economy based on the refuse of two superpowers over […]

Two Sides of the Coin

light pink background with 6 darker pink horizontal lines with a blue image of a bomb in background with a quote of Albert Camus

The Costs of War Project with the Watson Institute at Brown University recently published a report on the high suicide rates of military members and veterans of the post 9/11 wars. Their study repeated what has been known for some time, that members of the military are 4 times more likely to die by suicide than in combat. While suicide in the military had been lower than the general population in the past, the trend has reversed over the past 20 years and parallels the longest running foreign war in U.S. history in Afghanistan.   While advances in medical technology has led to less people being killed on the battlefield it has also created a situation of more military members living […]

Report from NWTRCC’s Third Online Conference

NWTRCC held its third online conference the weekend of April 30 – May 2, 2021. More than 40 people attended some portion of the conference, which began the evening of Friday April 30 with a social hour. For the social hour, we broke out twice into random groups of six for 30 minutes. It was chance for old friends to chat, but also to meet new friends. Saturday featured two panels. The first was a “Panel on the New Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons & Paths Forward for Resistance,” featuring Mari Inoue (attorney and cofounder of the Manhattan Project for a Nuclear-Free World), Dr. Linda Richards (historian of science and a grassroots activist since the 1986 Great Peace […]

“Watch Your Taxes”

Watch your taxes Don’t kill the kids Don’t participate in this So said a Palestinian lawyer in Gaza City as he gently shook his finger at the group of Americans on a human rights witness tour of the West Bank, Gaza and Israel. That was back in 1988, on a trip I took with the Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee, who continue demands to cut U.S. aid to Israel and protect Palestinians. I’ve written about that trip and that lawyer before, because I came home and changed my income tax resistance and redirection from some partial amount to 100% of what was due to the government. This tax day — many “peace processes” later — that trip was much on my mind […]

Redirection and Keeping Track of the People We Owe

Ammon Hennesy

April 15th saw Tax Day actions not seen in years. Well at least in 2 years. After Tax Day spread into 3 months in 2020 to finally conclude on July 15th last year, people were eager to come out on April 15th in order to join in a long tradition of holding that day as a stand out day to raise the issue of military spending in the US. War Tax Resisters and those concerned about militarism organize actions in their communities to educate that nearly half of the federal income taxes are devoted to war. April 15th also serves as a day of action to build upon community by investing our energy and resources towards human needs through individual […]

Funding A Livable Future

Man standing with had upon large tree in middle of photo surrounded by other large trees

We woke up to black smoky air the day after Labor Day 2020.  It was challenging to breathe outside, even with a N95 mask. We could not see the sun. The air quality index was over 500, in the extremely hazardous range. Our beautiful Oregon was burning up. The trails we love hiking and the places we love camping in and many families’ homes were burning. All over the state fires were burning out of control, including along a major highway following the McKenzie River, only 10 miles from Eugene, Oregon, where I live. In some cases folks had less than a 15-minute warning to abandon their homes. Up until the wildfires happened, though we were in the COVID shutdown, […]

Tax Day Press Release – April 2021

NWTRCC friends and supporters, Below is our press release for Tax Day 2021. We now that Tax Day has been officially delayed until May 17, but many groups are still hosting actions or Zoom events around the original April 15 day. Feel free to adjust the press release below for your own use. If you are having a tax day action, but have not alerted the NWTRCC office, please email the details to nwtrcc@nwtrcc.org, or use the online form. As stated in the press release, we are asking war tax resisters to make their presence felt on the streets (if possible) and online. Please take pictures and video of your tax day actions and send us a copy. When posting […]

Questioning Death and Taxes

woman holding pink sign with black text: "Taxes For Healthcare NOT Warfare"

While there has been some comparison of military spending versus medical costs, it seems as though many are less willing to address the issue of societal sickness caused by military spending. It needs to be named, identified, and articulated. And even fewer people refuse to stop paying for death and destruction. At a recent webinar with U.N. officials, the Vatican called for disarmament in light of the health crisis experienced as a result of the coronavirus from a humanizing perspective: “The pandemic offers us a precious opportunity… prompts us to question how much the huge military expenditures are really able to guarantee the security of individual populations, of how much these resources could and should be allocated to investments to […]

Military Budget of Little Comfort to Healthcare Workers

The most visible role of the U.S. military in the past year has been the fly overs of extremely expensive military bombers to express appreciation to healthcare workers beginning in May of 2020 and showing up at the Superbowl, typically a big advertising opportunity for the military. Even the sportscaster Joe Buck pointing out the obvious of “That’s your hard earned money and tax dollars at work!” and  questioned the amount of jet fuel used for the flyover. Health care workers sat in place of the cardboard cutouts at the Superbowl in an attempt to alleviate or distract from the tremendous toll taken on health care workers including  93% of health care workers were experiencing stress, 86% reported experiencing anxiety, […]

Can the IRS

“Can the IRS” was one of my favorite actions at the IRS. It was organized by John-Ed Croft, a homeless artist with a creative, activist mindset. This was the fall of 1987, and John-Ed was living in a squat at the time, but had also spent many a night in an unused building in Central Park and a lot of time in what he called a “cardboard condominium” in midtown Manhattan. John-Ed came by the War Resisters League office where I was working to ask for support for his latest campaign. The IRS was after him for more than $11,000 in back taxes, and he had decided to pay them “in the currency of the homeless.” He was organizing the […]

The Graveyards of Empire

Addicted to War book cover with cartoon image of man holding missiles and tanks in his arms

Later this year the U.S. will enter into its 3rd decade of war in Afghanistan. It has been the longest ongoing foreign war in US history with some of those fighting in the war not even born when the US began bombing on October 7th, 2001. In the early years Afghanistan was referred to as “the good war” to distinguish it from the war in Iraq, the “dumb war.” In more recent years both are referenced by their country name with less emphasis on the war and all of the destruction the U.S. has caused. These countries seem to hold a higher concentration of U.S. military bases among the 800 worldwide with the wars serving as justification for more bases […]

A ‘War Story’ and a ‘New Start’: How I learned to Oppose War and Stop Paying for the Bomb

We each come into this work in our own ways. The first war I was aware of was the amorphous Cold War. I did not know much about it other than it was between the U.S. and USSR. I was oblivious of nuclear weapons and the oblivion they could cause to the Earth. How we frame war and the stories we tell greatly impact people’s ability to relate to the stories.   I was reminded that with the 30th anniversary of the U.S. bombing of Iraq recently. The anniversary did not register for me at the time of the bombing. I was still in elementary school and my exposure to the war was having a classmate’s sister who was in the […]