It’s been a tumultuous few weeks. It seems like every day has brought a new scandal, crisis, or breaking news story. That’s why, once again as we look forward to a long weekend, we wanted provide you with some articles and analysis on issues we know you care about. We hope that these articles give you a chance to step back and look at the bigger picture of some of humanity’s most pressing challenges and get some analysis on what we can all do to help build a more peaceful world.
Of course, this weekend we will also be observing Memorial Day, a day to remember those who lost their life while serving our nation in uniform. History is filled with the stories of brave men and women making the ultimate sacrifice, and so even as we recommit ourselves to working for peace, our thoughts are with those who war has taken from us and the families and friends they left behind.
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Trump’s Starvation Budget
ThinkProgress: Trump’s budget sacrifices diplomacy for bigger guns
“The State Department would see massive cuts, while the Defense Department would get its budget padded further.”
U.S. News & World Report: Trump’s Budget Puts Lives at Risk
“The president’s budget calls for sharp reductions in anti-poverty programs and agency budgets that undermine our nation’s basic security.”
VOX: Trump’s budget eliminates US funding for global family planning and famine relief
“America First’ is bad news for starving children, women who want to control their reproductive rights, and the world’s sick and most desperate.”
Refugees and human rights
Exploring five of the most common search queries that people around the world are asking about Syria and the Syrian refugee crisis.
The Guardian: The ungrateful refugee: ‘We have no debt to repay’
“Dina Nayeri was just a child when she fled Iran as an asylum seeker. But as she settled into life in the US and then Europe, she became suspicious of the idea that refugees should shed their old identities and be eternally thankful.”
The New York Times: Don’t Profit From Abuses by Bahrain
“Bahraini citizens recognize that the United States is a superpower, but that status should not depend solely on its military capacity. American power should also be built on respect for justice, equality and human rights — the core principles upon which the United States was founded.”
The New York Times: They are Slaughtering Us Like Animals – Pulitzer-Prize Winning article on Duterte’s War on Drugs
“Inside President Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal anti-drug campaign in the Philippines, our photojournalist documented 57 homicide victims over 35 days.”
Over-militarization of U.S. Foreign Policy
The Hill: Why is Trump rewarding Saudi war crimes with more weapons?
“Yemeni civilians suffering from unlawful airstrikes know the US supports the coalition and that U.S. weapons have been used against them. This is the national security problem the administration should be paying more attention to.”
Bangor Daily News: No president — especially Trump — should have sole the authority to use nuclear weapons
“Trump’s sole control of the United States nuclear arsenal is worse than any nightmare King could turn into a novel. But the real danger lies in the fact he can launch thousands of our nuclear weapons within the time it takes to order a cup of coffee — and there are no checks and balances in place stop him.”
Huffington Post: Just What The Middle East Needs — $110 Billion More In Weapons
“It appears the Trump administration is counting on the country with the worst human rights record in the region to enforce peace and security in the Middle East.”
The Guardian: View on Trumpian diplomacy: not up to much
“The US president’s foreign tour has underlined how inadequate his art of the deal is when handling relations between states.”
Activism and Resistance
Waging Nonviolence: Syrians roll back extremism in Idlib without military intervention
“In a country exhausted by armed struggle and the presence of extremist groups, local civil initiatives have proven to be more effective at building peace than increased military involvement.”
The Nation: Pramila Jayapal Wants Democrats to Know That Resistance Is Not Enough
The freshman congresswoman from Washington thinks that this is the time when progressive ideas can go mainstream.
The New York Times: From Protests Past, Lessons in What Works
Workable approaches: diversify your tactics, plan, focus, get off-line and show up, create an inclusive brand, promote hope not fear, delegitimize with facts, build on small concrete actions