Author Archives: Brian Terrell

‘We are killing terrorists’ and ‘attack we will’—Trump’s most vicious racist rant

On Monday, August 21, President Donald Trump delivered a prime-time speech almost shocking in its ordinariness. It was such an address as either of his immediate predecessors, George W. Bush or Barack Obama, could easily have given over the previous decade and a half. While hinting at nebulous new strategies and ill-defined new metrics to measure success, President Trump announced that the 16-year-old war in Afghanistan will go on pretty much as it has. And the establishment breathed a sigh of relief. Continue reading

What makes a hate group?

“As a matter of fact, you have had a person attend your protests in Camp Douglas who has threatened to kill our Deputies.” This piece of startling news was revealed to me in a letter from Juneau County, Wisconsin, Undersheriff Craig Stuchlik, dated July 25. Continue reading

My visit to a Las Vegas jail

“The degree of civilization in a society,” wrote the Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky, “can be judged by entering its prisons.” As a frequent visitor to Nevada in recent years, I have often been surprised by the cultural diversity and spiritual richness that can be found in Las Vegas. Still, I think that Dostoyevsky was right. A more accurate assessment of the degree of civilization in Las Vegas and for the broader society that the city claims to be “The Entertainment Capital” of can be made by entering the cells of the Clark County Correctional Center than by going to the top of the Stratosphere, cruising the Strip or even by taking in a Cirque du Soleil show. Continue reading

A plea to Pope Francis: Name United States’ foreign policy genocide

In recent weeks, I have been part of a haphazard and ad hoc process to compose an open Letter to Pope Francis in advance of his September 2015 visit to the United States. The promotion of this letter has been taken up by Friends of Franz Jagerstatter, a community of peacemakers inspired by the Austrian Catholic farmer who was martyred for his refusal to fight in the German Army during World War II. Continue reading

Redefining ‘imminent’

How the U.S. Dept. of Justice makes murder respectable, kills the innocent & jails their defenders

Political language can be used, George Orwell said in 1946, “to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” Continue reading

Making Iowa into a war zone

National Guard poised to attack from Des Moines airport

The F-16 jets of the Iowa Air National Guard that formerly buzzed the city of Des Moines have disappeared and we are told that their base at the Des Moines International Airport is in the process of refitting into a command center for unmanned aerial vehicles, UAVs, commonly called drones. Continue reading

Drones and gadflies—framing the debate on war by remote control

On May 23, President Obama gave a major address, from the National Defense University, On the Future of Our Fight Against Terrorism, in which he acknowledged for the first time the US government’s still officially secret program of assassination by remotely controlled drones. Continue reading

Drones, sanctions and the prison industrial complex

In the final weeks of a six-month prison sentence for protesting remote control murder by drones, specifically from Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri, I can only reflect on my time of captivity in light of the crimes that brought me here. In these ominous times, it is America’s officials and judges and not the anarchists who exhibit the most flagrant contempt for the rule of law and it is due to the malfeasance of these that I owe the distinction of this sabbatical. Continue reading