The latest attack on the U.S. by its Fifth Column enemies is aimed at stopping the Armed Forces from enlisting new recruits. Faced with a flagging anti-war movement, leftist agitators have shifted gears and are now subverting the War on Islamist Terror by trying to destroy America’s ability to maintain a fighting force. Though so far limited in success, this counter-recruitment movement is growing quickly and threatens to wreck America’s ability to defend itself from its enemies.
Nation-wide there are hundreds of small organizations involved in this counter-recruitment movement. They formulate strategies based on those of prominent traditional pacifist groups. Almost all of them are directed by a handful of well established “social justice” and “peace” groups with long histories of anti-U.S., pro-communist and pro-totalitarian alignments and agendas. All the larger pacifist and radical groups work with each other, with the smaller groups and with the Legal Left to coordinate what amounts to a broad national movement.
At the movement’s forefront are the radical groups Code Pink for Peace, United for Peace and Justice, the Ruckus Society, the Campus Antiwar Network and the Society of American Law Teachers. These groups coordinate with four major pacifist organizations having long histories of anti-U.S. pro-communist activities- the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO), The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Veterans for Peace (VAP) and the War Resisters League (WRL)
Code Pink for Peace, headed by Castro-loving neo-communist and perennial anti-U.S. activist Medea Benjamin, orchestrates the direct-action segment of the counter recruitment movement with the Ruckus Society, an off-shoot of the eco-terrorism group Earth First!
Benjamin’s history with the Ruckus Society goes back to the late 1990s when she helped it plan and execute the violent riots that occurred during the 1999 World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting in Seattle, Washington. As part of Code Pink’s counter-recruitment drive Benjamin has enlisted the Ruckus Society to provide training camps for potential 18-22 year old counter-recruiters.
Ruckus Society training camps provide activists with the tools to organize street protests, shut down recruitment offices and avoid arrest. Those attending the camps are exposed to a constant barrage of anti- capitalist, anti-war, anti-U.S. propaganda. Ruckus also advertises its training camps through its front group, Not Your Soldier, a counter-recruitment organization whose website marquee features an angry looking young man reading a book titled, “History of U.S. Imperialism.”
Code Pink and Ruckus provide tips on organizing and executing counter-recruitment protests and give detailed instructions on how potential recruits can opt out of recruitment databases. In conjunction with Leave My Child Alone, a front for the leftist-funding Working Assets group, Code Pink provides a detailed guide to pressuring school boards to counter Section 9528 of the 2001 Now Child Left Behind Act. Section 9528 allows the U.S. Military access to high school students’ names, addresses and phone numbers and is an important tool in identifying and contacting potential new recruits.
Code Pink instructs its members on how to harass and shut down military recruitment offices. One of the tactics it prescribes involves having members schedule meetings with recruitment officers under the pretense of being potential recruits and then showing up for the meetings with groups of rowdy anti-military protesters. Protesters are urged to block doors, directly harass recruiters and stage “die ins” in front of recruitment centers. Code Pink’s website displays a deep animosity towards military recruiters, referring to them as “warmongers and liars.”
The radical-left United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ) is another group that shares the direct-action helm of the counter-recruitment movement. Formed in 2002 and led by communist Leslie Cagan, an anti-U.S.agitator with a 40 year history of shilling for totalitarian regimes including Castro’s, UFPJ acts as a contact point for over 800 smaller “peace and justice” groups involved in the anti-war and counter-recruitment movements. UFPJ pushes a counter-recruiting agenda similar to Code Pink’s and like Code Pink aims its counter-recruitment effort primarily at junior-high and high school students, concentrating on neutralizing the Section 9528 provision of the No Child Left Behind Act .While Code Pink organizes and directs counter-recruitment in urban areas on the West Coast and in the Midwest, UFPJ runs the counter-recruitment movement on the East coast, focusing its activities in New York City and in urban centers in New Jersey. UFPJ also helps coordinate counter-recruitment activities on college campuses in the U.S. and provides extensive grassroots training to college anti-war activists.
The Campus Antiwar Network (CAN) is at the forefront of the counter-recruiting movement on college campuses across America. CAN represents a new breed of anti-U.S., anti-Israel activist organizations since it operates independent of major anti-war groups like International ANSWER and UFPJ. CAN is run directly by college students and has organized a comprehensive counter-recruitment campaign that focuses on in-your-face tactics including threatening and verbally harassing recruiters and chasing them off campuses.
Another group essential to the movement is the Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors (CCCO). Co-founded in 1948 by Marxist-Leninist A.J. Muste, a man who spent most of his life agitating for pro-communist causes and who surrounded himself with radicals and agitators, CCCO is currently headed by former Black Panther Wendy Carson and neo-communist radical Teresa Panapinto. Its Sponsors include Castro-lover Ed Asner, Noam Chomsky, the radical leftist and former Democratic Congressman Ron Dellums, NAACP Executive Director Julian Bond and moonbat musician Jello Biafra, who in 2000 ran as a Green Party candidate for president with cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal as his running mate.
As part of what it calls its Military Out of Our Schools drive, CCCO enters inner city junior high and high schools, puts up anti-war, anti-military posters and holds pacifist seminars for students and their parents. It commonly employs the “race card” to put forth its anti-military message by implying that enlisting in the military is tantamount to doing white people’s dirty work. Its current counter-recruiting poster is an overtly racist piece of agitprop featuring a dark-skinned child flanked by a death's head and white soldier with an evil grin on his face with the words "War" and "Death" on the child's right side, and a happy dark-skinned family in a pastoral setting with the words "Life" and "Peace" on the child's left side.
The War Resisters League (WRL) also plays a significant role in the counter-recruitment movement. Formed in 1923 from groups that had been opposed to World War I, WRL consistently trumpets an anti-U.S. pro-socialist quasi-communist agenda. WRL, in conjunction with CCCO, runs a race-baiting inner-city counter-recruitment organization called “Revolution Out of Truth and Struggle” or ROOTS. The ROOTS website features semi-literate racist and anti-military cant and informs its readers that the goal of the military’s JROTC program is to “brainwash us into believing the rich white man’s version of history.” WRL also sponsors the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee(NWTRCC). A 2003 essay by NWTRCC member Aaron Falbel published on the NWTRCC website expresses hatred of the U.S. Falbel says, “The true source of war in our time, as I see it, is none other than the American Way of Life - a way of life founded on and maintained by taking through things that do not rightly belong to us, whether that be Native American land, or the labor of people of color, or 50 percent of the world's resources, or access to the markets, and thus the money of other nations worldwide."
Rounding out the major pacifist groups involved in counter-recruiting are the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) and Veterans for Peace(VFP).
The largest of the major pacifist groups, AFSC touts itself as a natural extension of the traditional Quaker movement. It is anything but. AFSC has defended the Viet Cong and the PLO. It took the position that reports of Pol Pot’s genocide were of part of an American “misinformation campaign” and described Pot’s regime as an “example of an alternative model of development and social organization.” AFSC printed and distributed a defense of the Khmer Rouge well after news of its killing fields had become known. Though technically not a communist front organization, AFSC has a long history of communist-filled ranks and maintains close working relationships with communist groups including the Workers World Party, the International Socialist Organization and the Communist Party USA. Not once during the Cold War did AFSC call for the Soviet Union to scrap its military but it has never ceased working towards the complete disarming of the U.S. in the face of its enemies. True to its radical-left bent, AFSC also assists cop-killer and leftist icon Mumia Abu Jamal.
Besides its well-established high-profile commitment to U.S. pacifism AFSC’s main contribution to the current counter-recruitment movement is its front organization, National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth (NNOMY). As its name indicates, NNOMY seeks to build a national network of anti-U.S.-military organizations. NNOMY works closely with CCCO. Their missions and methods are almost identical and their leadership overlaps. NNOMY is somewhat unique among the major players in the counter-recruitment movement in that its emerging leadership structure indicates AFSC’s acknowledgement of its 60s-era leadership’s growing irrelevance to young people. As a result, AFSC has transformed its NNOMY arm into a primarily youth-led organization. AFSC has taken a typically Marxist approach in this endeavor by organizing NNOMY’s power structure and assembling its young leadership based on strict gender, race and sexual orientation percentages. Like Code Pink for Peace, NNOMY trains anti-military activists at primarily the high school level.
A key player in aiding NNOMY’s young foot soldiers is the anti-war, anti-U.S. pro-totalitarian outfit Veterans for Peace (VFP). Comprised of disgruntled and disillusioned veterans, VFP makes its membership available to help all counter-recruitment groups strengthen their anti-military message. In that capacity, VFP members give anti-military testimonials at high schools and colleges across the country and try to persuade students to not join the military. Like all major players in the movement, VFP has a solid history of sympathizing with America’s enemies including the Marxist Sandinistas and Fidel Castro.
Every major leftist initiative of the past 40 years has been facilitated by lawyers sympathetic to radical causes. In this regard, the counter-recruitment movement is no different. The members of the Legal Left most responsible for clearing a path for the movement are the Society of American Law Teachers(SALT), the National Lawyers Guild (NLG), which defends students arrested during anti-Solomon anti-recruitment activities and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which provides detailed advice to schools and student organizations regarding the legalities of instituting counter-recruitment policies and whose front organization, CampusActivism.org , features a counter-recruitment campaign. Though all three organizations assist the counter-recruitment movement in legal matters, SALT’s efforts far outweigh the others’.
Comprised of leftist, anti-Iraq War and anti-Bush law professors, SALT has led the legal charge against the Solomon Amendment, which stipulates that schools receiving federal funding must allow Armed Forces recruiters access to their campuses or risk the loss of that funding. SALT has vigorously challenged the Solomon Amendment on the basis that the U.S. Military discriminates against homosexuals through its “don’t ask don’t tell policy.” SALT argues that forcing schools with anti-discrimination policies to abide by the Solomon Amendment is a direct violation of First Amendment rights. SALT won a major victory against the amendment in November 2004 when the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals issued an injunction against its enforcement. Though the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to make a final ruling on the amendment in October, as it stands now, schools no longer have to abide by its provisions.
This has greatly emboldened the counter-recruitment movement. But the movement’s overall effectiveness against the Armed Forces will ultimately depend on a favorable Supreme Court Ruling in the fall. Should that Court strike down the Solomon Amendment, the counter-recruitment forces will mount an all-out charge- one that will attempt to plunge a stake into the heart of America’s military might.
Rocco DiPippo, a free lance political writer, publishes The Autonomist blog and contributes to David Horowitz’s Moonbat Central group blog.