Armistice Day is almost on us again, the 100th anniversary. I have attached the flyer which Sean Michael Dargan, one of the organizers, sent me. Please distribute it widely. Chapter 25 VFP is going to be involved in some way. I will keep you posted. Fran
On Thursday evening, August 2nd, professor Lisa Gilman of George Mason University was a special guest of Chapter 25 at the community meeting room of the Urban League, 2222 S. Park St. About 40 attended her hour-plus presentation on the unique subject of music played by troops in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars (My Music, My War). The contrast of this musical experience—from the sociology of the troops to the rapidly evolving technology that underpinned the music—was understandably different than that of the Vietnam War troop experience in the 1960’s—and earlier wars for that matter. Those who attended the presentation a few years ago by UW-Madison authors Craig Werner and Doug Bradley (We Gotta Get Out of this Place) no doubt appreciated the distinctly different war worlds. During her years of research for this book, Lisa also produced and directed Grounds for Resistance, a documentary film about the veteran-run anti-war coffee house, Coffee Strong.
We give credit to The University of Oregon for this very brief summary of her book:
In the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, technological developments in music listening enabled troops to carry vast amounts of music with them and easily acquire new music, for themselves and to share with their fellow troops as well as friends and loved ones far away. This ethnographic study examines U.S. troops’ musical-listening habits during and after war, and the accompanying fear, domination, violence, isolation, pain, and loss that troops experienced. My Music, My War is a moving ethnographic account of what war was like for those most intimately involved. It shows how individuals survive in the messy webs of conflicting thoughts and emotions that are intricately part of the moment-to-moment and day-to-day phenomenon of war, and the pervasive memories in its aftermath. It gives fresh insight into musical listening as it relates to social dynamics, gender, community formation, memory, trauma, and politics.
We were pleased to host this community presentation and grateful to Lisa Gilman for her visit. The Chapter intends to continue engaging both its members and the community with more special programs. Please join us if and when you can—mark your calendars! A coming announcement: A special musical program on Veterans Day-November 11-at the Barrymore Theater on Atwood Avenue. Stay tuned.
Fran introduces the evening’s subject and Professor Lisa Gilman (left)
Lisa Gilman responds to an audience question.
Gilman’s presentation drew approximately 40 members, Iraq-Afghanistan veterans and
members of the public.
Book signing and post-presentation conversation. Left to right: Lisa Gilman, Norm Stockwell of the Progressive Magazine, and VFP member Daryl Sherman.
Professor Lisa Gilman and Chapter Coordinator Fran Wiedenhoeft.
The Madison Veterans for Peace Chapter invite you to a Multimedia Event presented by Lisa Gilman – “My Music, My War: The Listening Habits of U.S. Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan”
To learn more, see http://madisonvfp.org or contact Fran Wiedenhoeft 608-576-7416 All welcome! Sliding scale donations welcomed, too.
In the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, recent technological developments in music listening enabled troops to carry with them vast amounts of music and easily acquire new music, for themselves and to share with their fellow troops as well as friends and loved ones far away.
This ethnographic study examines U.S. troops’ musical-listening habits during and after war, and the accompanying fear, domination, violence, isolation, pain, and loss that troops experienced. My Music, My War is a moving ethnographic account of what war was like for those most intimately involved.
It shows how individuals survive in the messy webs of conflicting thoughts and emotions that are intricately part of the moment-to-moment and day-to-day phenomenon of war, and the pervasive memories in its aftermath. It gives fresh insight into musical listening as it relates to social dynamics, gender, community formation, memory, trauma, and politics.
Here’s a PDF for flier to spread around…
More on the author…
By David Giffey
Alfred McCoy’s newest book concludes with five scenarios for the potential end of U.S. global hegemony. The book was McCoy’s topic as guest speaker at the annual Veterans for Peace May 28 afternoon rally at the Gates of Heaven.
McCoy’s sobering, realistic, and carefully researched presentation described historical evidence of empires built and undone. While identifying aspects of a declining “American Century” [of U.S. hegemony] as signaling an end to an American Empire, he also noted positive results of the “American Century” including formation of the United Nations and the World Health Organization, and global advances in human rights.
(Note to readers: “hegemony” may be defined as “domination” or “control.” In McCoy’s usage, “hegemony” may also be substituted for “empire” or “the American Century.”)
In the Shadows of the American Century: The Rise and Decline of U.S. Global Power, (Haymarket Books 2017) is McCoy’s newest book. He wrote to end the final chapter, “Now that the American Century is ending, we can only wonder what kind of shadow it will cast across the globe for future generations.” His presentation at the peace rally posed a similar question.
The American Century is described by McCoy as beginning around the time of WW II. Five scenarios detailed by the author as potentially ending the American Century by 2040 include an evolving world order, economic decline, military misadventure, World War III, and climate change. Climate change, McCoy writes, “…is on such a clear scientific trajectory that there is no need for speculation about its impact…world power would silently shift away from Washington by sheer force of geopolitics and ‘extreme weather’.”
Sharing the peace rally program was Progressive magazine publisher Norman Stockwell, who told the audience of more than 100 about his recent return trip to Vietnam and the ongoing efforts and successes of Madison Quakers Inc. (MQI) and director Mike Boehm. Micro-credit loans, compassion houses, primary schools, My Lai Peace Park, and drilling of water wells are among projects headed by Boehm and MQI over the past decades in Quang Ngai Province.
Father David Couper is an ordained Episcopal priest, author, former Madison police chief and member of Veterans for Peace. Couper spoke during the peace rally about his path to nonviolence, and ended his invocation with a poem.
During the program, seniors from six area high schools were honored as winners of 2018 cash scholarships in the Chapter 25 essay contest. Since the program began 11 years ago, close to 200 student essays have been submitted by scholarship applicants from high schools in Madison, Spring Green, Dodgeville, Muscoda, Richland Center, Baraboo and Boscobel. Student essays are written on topics of peace and nonviolence. Attending the peace rally and introduced by VFP member Paul McMahon was the 2018 winner from West High School, Diana Nava. She was accompanied by her mother, Julia, younger brother, Alex, and a friend. Scholarship recipients from other schools in 2018 are: Lily Scallon, Boscobel High School; Nichole Erdman, Dodgeville; Miles Statz, Baraboo; Garrett Prem, River Valley; and Cole Darling, Richland Center.
Members of Veterans for Peace who have died were named and remembered fondly, including: Clarence Kailin, Joey Camarrano, Jim Ellsworth, Sidney Podell, Dr. James Allen, Jeff Goldstein, Charles Sweet, Dr. Eugene Farley, Joel Gaalswyk, John Oliger, and Ed Garvey.
The rally began with a stirring set of music by the band Old Cool. Band members are Dan Hildebrand, Sandy Nowak, Arvid Berge and Lee Grady. Ending the event was Sean Michael Dargan’s bagpipe music while attendees placed red carnations at the nearby monument to Wisconsin Lincoln Brigade volunteers fighting Fascists in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. Clarence Kailin, namesake of Chapter 25 Veterans for Peace, was a member of the Lincoln Brigade. His name is listed on the marker. Clarence died in 2009 at age 93.
Al McCoy wrote of the May 28 Veterans for Peace Rally:
“Although I speak regularly at diverse locations in America, Asia, and Europe, I found myself unexpectedly moved by the esprit of the Veterans for Peace event that makes Madison such a special community. The pride of the student essay awardee, the eloquence of Rev. David Couper’s recollections of witnessing nuclear tests in the Pacific back in the 1950s, and Norm Stockwell’s description of contemporary peace-building at My Lai all came together to make the quest for peace seem not a Quixotic quest, but a matter of political necessity.”
News Coverage of Memorial Day Program
Channel 3000: Veterans for Peace host Memorial Day program at park