News and Media

For interviews and all other media inquiries, please call our office at 212.228.0450, or contact us by email at wrl [at] warresisters.org or via our Contact page.

On MLK Day: A Special Message from Arun Kundnani

Arun Kundnani

On this MLK day, let us recall Dr. Martin Luther King's deepest legacy. He understood that denouncing the violent extremism of young, angry men in the ghettos could not be done without hypocrisy unless one also condemned the far greater violence of the U.S. war machine in Vietnam. When governments decide political problems can be solved through violence, it is no surprise their citizens reach the same conclusion.

Massive Protest Wave in Iraq Challenges Sectarianism

WRL's Ali Issa on the protest upsurge in Iraq: "Since a new wave of protest in Iraq — the largest in decades — has forced the Iraqi government to finally begin acknowledging the fundamental problems with the now 12-year-old quota system, Iraqis across sectors and at the grassroots are striving to chart a new political course. It’s also time for the world at large to see Iraqis in a new way. Not as simply Sunni, Shi’ite or Kurd, Gulf-backed or Iran-backed, terrorist or victim. Iraqis are asking us to do much better than that."

Stop Urban Shield 2015!

WHAT IS THE STOP URBAN SHIELD COALITION?

Stop Urban Shield is a broad coalition of grassroots community and social justice organizations primarily based in the Bay Area but with partnering community groups across the nation who have come together united against Urban Shield. Urban Shield, a SWAT team training and weapons expo that brings together local, regional, and international police-military units to collaborate on and profit from new forms of surveillance, state repression, and state violence.

Tear Gas - What You Need To Know

From 2012 to 2014, War Resisters League ran the Facing Tear Gas campaign aimed at exposing the tear gas industry: who's making it, who's buying it, and where it's used. Tear Gas, unsurprisingly, was found to be a common tool for state oppression from the United States to Bahrain, Egypt, Israel, and elsewhere.

Now in 2020, the use of tear gas is back on the forefront of people's minds for its use against Black Lives Matter protestors across the United States. Not only are police using a chemical weapon on protestors, but they are also using it during the context of the COVID-19 pandemic - compounding the danger to people's lives.

While some cities across the United States have implemented a 30-day ban, War Resisters League continues to push for a total ban of tear gas.

For more information on tear gas, including domestic and international testimonials, research behind companies, and a workshop you can use to educate others, visit our website here. We've pulled some key information below:

Militarized Response Tracker #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd

We’re heartbroken and outraged and like so many of you, refuse to allow the systematic killing of Black people in the United States to continue without a fight for justice. There is a lot to be outraged about: from how the politics of COVID-19 pandemic put the lives of Black and indigenous folks at risk, to how calls for release of prisoners still haven’t been met, to the fact that police brutality has taken the lives of Ahmaud Arbury, Dreasjon Reed, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Taylor McDade, and far too many others. 

What We’re Tracking: Militarized Responses to #Justice4GeorgeFloyd

When we talk about police militarization, there is still belief in the notion that if police weren’t militarized, then we wouldn’t have a problem - even within the antimilitarist community. That's not true. We need to push back on this idea and the myth of “a few bad apples in the police force.” The truth is: “regular policing” has always and continues to harass, detain, brutalize, and terrorize Black people. It’s why there are virtually never repercussions for police officers who commit murder. And the militarization of domestic policing isn’t entirely new either - in fact, the history goes back decades.

TAKE ACTION: STOP U.S. ARMS TRADE

Over the last month, under the cover of COVID, a new series of Arms Sales were proposed by the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the section of the Pentagon responsible for handling major arms sales. According to US law, there is a 30 day period to mount a legislative challenge to these sales before they are put into the pipeline for the arms industry to move forward.

WRL, along with International Coalition for Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP) and the Malaya Movement, met with Ilhan Omar's office, who sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the oversight body for this type of sale, who has agreed to mount a challenge.

Back to basics: solidaridad | تضامن | solidariteit | solidarity | એકતા | 연대 | mshikamano

We knew this was going to be a tough and pivotal year politically, but few predicted the extent to which it would be so. Constant updates from the COVID-19 pandemic to the Democratic Primaries to chaos from within the Trump administration are alarming and hyperstimulating. For many young people, this will be the second economic collapse that we’ve lived through in our lives— not to mention the third “conceptual” war (the “war” on the coronavirus follows the War on Drugs and War on Terror).

Our deepest hope for our members is that you are able to take care of yourselves and others right now. Remember to practice asking for help, as well as offering help.

Join us and Register for an Online Town Hall on 4/6: Racial Justice Has No Borders, Militarization in the time of Pandemic

Racial Justice Has No Borders Town Hall - April 6, 3 pm

Racial Justice Has No Borders is a new, broad anti-war coalition that seeks to recenter the conversation about U.S. wars and militarization on the needs and leadership of those most impacted.

This coalition puts a focus on diaspora, refugee, veteran, Black, Brown and Indigenous communities who bear the brunt of this country’s militarism to challenge the myth that more police, wars and weapons have made any of us more safe or secure. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is imperative that we forge new avenues for global solidarity that can lead to real and lasting peace and security. On April 6th at 3 pm EDT, 2 pm CDT, 1 pm MDT, 12 pm PDT the eve of the Wisconsin Democratic Primary, the coalition will host a virtual Town Hall examining where the presidential candidates and their parties currently stand on US military policy, Defense spending, the ongoing 'War on Terror,’ and militarization at home. Register for this town hall today and help us build a movement.

Important Message Regarding WRL’s store + Mutual Aid resources

We’re writing to touch base during this time of crisis and uncertainty, to offer an update on WRL’s operations and to share a few resources on what we can be doing to love and protect each other in these strange and difficult times. Like many of our peer organizations, War Resisters League has moved to working remotely, and because we ship directly out of our office and don’t use third-party logistics to ship orders, we’ve temporarily paused shipping from our online store. Here is what you need to know about our current operations:

Welcome News: NYC set to divest city pension funds from Nuclear Weapons

Every move towards a world free of warfare is a move worth taking.

That’s why I spoke on behalf of War Resisters League at New York City Council on Tuesday - to voice our support for Resolution 0976 and Introduction 1621. These proposals reaffirm New York City as a nuclear-free zone, and instruct the pension funds of all NYC public employees to divest from the companies that profit from nuclear weapons.

Throughout the day, we heard the testimonies of A-bomb survivors from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Kings Bay Plowshare activists, and lifelong New Yorkers who recalled memories of working and playing on radioactive sites in Manhattan and Staten Island. Bayard Rustin, who previously worked at WRL, was present in the room in spirit through comments sent in their memory by Walter Naegle, their partner. It was moving to be in a room full of people echoing the call for unilateral nuclear disarmament. 

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