The hard path of resistance – conscientious objectors panel – Ep 35

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Conscientious objection is a time-honored part of military service.  After reading about its history a bit, I decided we needed a closer look from the only people who can tell it right from the horse’s mouth: objectors themselves.  Here, I chat with three of them, all with different backgrounds, but one overwhelming consensus among them: military service was unacceptable to their conscience. Here, we find out a few clues why.

Clifton Hicks enlisted in the U.S. Army at the age of seventeen and served as an M1 Abrams tank crewman with C Troop, 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, 1st Armored Division in Iraq 2003-2004. In 2005 he was honorably discharged as a conscientious objector. He went on to earn a degree in anthropology from Appalachian State University and currently works as a musician and music teacher.

Rosa del Duca is a writer and musician. She grew up a tomboy in rural Montana, where she joined the Army National Guard when she was seventeen. During her six-year contract, she became not only a conscientious objector, but a feminist and unlikely rebel.  That tumultuous time is the focus of her memoir, Breaking Cadence: One Woman’s War Against the War, forthcoming from Ooligan Press in May, 2019, and her companion podcast, Breaking Cadence: Insights From a Modern-Day Conscientious Objector.

Jorge Javier (JJ) Rodriguez is a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, where his time spent as a cadet solidified his stance as a conscientious objector.  He is now stationed at Fort Campbell, KY, where he is going through the process of the Army’s conscientious objector program. For his full bio and a better look at his situation, click here.

Ramon Mejia enlisted in the Marine Corps out of economic necessity. He served in Supply Ops. and participated in the initial invasion of and deployment to Dhi Qar Province, Iraq in 2003. As a result of his experience in Iraq, he converted to Islam in 2008. He has been an active organizer in countering local manifestations of hate and racism by neo-Nazis and paramilitary groups in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. Ramon is a Social Studies teacher and one of the founding organizers of #VetsVsHate, a national veteran grassroots initiative pushing back against racism and bigotry. He was recently recognized as part of the ‘MPower 100–Muslim Social Justice Leaders Building Power Across the United States.

RESOURCES

GI Rights Hotline – 18774474487

Quakers House of Fayetteville – 919-663-7122

Department of Defense Office of Inspector General800-424-9098

Center on Conscience and War – 1-800-379-2679

Code Pink – 202-248-2093

Vets For Peace – 314-725-6005

About Face (Veterans against the war) – 929-430-4988

Courage to Resist 510-488-3559

The Objector Church – 510-488-3559


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570. 

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A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, Fahim Shirazee, James Higgins, and James O’Barr.  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson, Danny Sjursen, and BT Hampton

Intro / outro music “Fortress on a hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

Don’t let hooligan Joe see you take that ice cream – Interview with Joe Kassabian – Ep 32

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Joe Kassabian, U.S. Army veteran of Afghanistan, author, and cohost of the Lions Led By Donkeys Podcast stops by to discuss his new book “The Hooligans of Kandahar”, a novel about Joe’s second tour in Afghanistan.  We discuss Afghanistan, the racism of Ty Cobb and the ‘good soldier’ doctrine, and whether news should get out of the opinion business.

Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, Fahim Shirazee, James Higgins, and James O’Barr.  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson, Danny Sjursen, and BT Hampton

Intro / outro music “Fortress on a hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Thanks to Nate Bethea from What A Hell of a Way to Die for editing and mixing this episode

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

Militarism after all – Season 1 finale – Ep 31

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Today is our final episode for the year.  We discuss the HUGE pile of recent military news that has occurred within the last week, to include Jim Mattis’ resignation, 4k troops departing Syria, half of the current deployment in Afghanistan redeploying, and so on.

For that who haven’t heard, Fortress On A Hill has a new cohost: BT Hampton.  He’s an OIF / OEF veteran like Danny and myself and we’re pumped to have him as part of our tiny circle of self destruction.  You can find his blog and personal podcast here.  

2:23– The death and crimes of George H.W. Bush

20:00– Niger investigation update

35:33– Syria redeployment \ cutting Afghanistan troops in half

38:40– Mattis resignation

1:08:20– Patron questions

1:45:08– An outrageous amount of militarism in a small package

An operation in Niger went fatally awry.  Who is the Army punishing? – Thomas Gibbons-Neff – NYT


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, Fahim Shirazee, and James Higgins!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Intro / outro music “Fortress on a hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

Danny roundup – November 2018

I’ve decided to start doing a monthly roundup of Danny’s writing pieces.  It will help give a better single spot to check for specific articles.

Start with Danny’s American History for TruthDiggers series, an ongoing project examining US history from a more detailed and history based perspective.  The most recent addition (part 21) discussed the lost history of World War I and how its peace didn’t last, despite the overwhelming horror of the conflict.  

American History for Truthdiggers: A Savage ‘War to End All Wars,’ and a Failed Peace

“America Is Headed For Military Defeat in Afghanistan” at the American Conservative

“What if Osama bin Laden Had Legitimate Grievances?” at TruthDig

“Three Thanksgivings – Snapshots From a Career of Failure” at Antiwar.com

“Global War to Infinity and Beyond” at TomDispatch.com

“Nexus of Evil: The Cynical Saudi-Israeli Alliance and the Reshaping of the Middle East” at Antiwar.com

“The Reclamation of George W. Bush Is an American Tragedy” at Antiwar.com

“One Veteran’s Plea – Get Informed or Ditch the Holiday” at Antiwar.com

“Has Iraq Become Another ‘Lesson Lost’ Like Vietnam?” at The American Conservative

“Not on the Agenda – America’s Wars Are a Non-Factor in Today’s Midterm Elections” at Antiwar.com

From Afghanistan with sorrowful results – Ep 29

It’s been WAY too long since we’ve done headlines, so we do our best to catch you up.  I break down the current situation in Yemen and discuss some updates, including the American contractors working as mercenaries there while Danny takes us back to the seventeen year old war in Afghanistan, showing the headlines missed during the week while the media was focused on a photo of the senior commander in Afghanistan carrying his rifle.


America Is Headed For Military Defeat in Afghanistan – Danny Sjursen – The American Conservative

Tank plant in Ohio that Trump “saved” – nothing in piece suggested he actually “saved” it.

1.3 million Iraqi children displaced by war with Islamic State

Al Qaeda commander gets numerous emergency surgeries while held at GITMO.

US exempts Iran’s Chabahar Port from sanctions – helpful to Afghanistan’s economy.

Iraq asks US to consider how sanctions will affect Iraq’s economy / etc.

Marine veteran protests Leupold at Blazers game

Think Progress on Leupold protest

Second Saudi journalist tortured and murdered by Saudi authorities

The Ministry of Defense in the UK is being petitioned to stop recruiting 16 and 17 year olds.

Low IQ draftees were chosen after Vietnam leaders couldn’t make numbers.

Rust costs 21 billion per year

Statistical connections between veterans and mass shooters

Army secretary says NCOs should visit barracks on weekends to prevent suicide

Hypertension linked to Agent Orange exposure

VA moving hundreds of docs from union admin spots back to providing care for veterans

1 in 5 generals couldn’t deploy for medical reasons in 2016

There’s a strong possibility that several of the northern Marianas Islands will become bombing ranges for the US Navy – ep from Chapo Traphouse

The Trump administration is demanding the Supreme Court immediately rule on the ban on transgender people serving in the military.

VA isn’t providing benefits correctly to veterans with ALS

85k children under believed to have died in the war in Yemen – CNN

Trump may declare the Houthis a terrorist organization

Finland and Denmark have joined Germany in ceasing all weapons sales to Saudi Arabia over their war crimes in Yemen, along with the continuing fallout from the assassination of Washington Post writer Jamal Khashoggi

Yemenis killed in assassination by American contractors


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, and Fahim Shirazee!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Intro / outro music “Fortress on a hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Thanks to Nate Bethea from What A Hell of a Way to Die for editing and mixing this episode

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

How to go for broke as an anti-war advocate – Scott Horton interview Part 2 – Ep 28

Today, Danny and I present part 2 of our sitdown with Scott Horton, host of Anti-War Radio on KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles, which is also known by its podcast name, the Scott Horton Show.  Scott has hosted Anti-War Radio since 2003 and has done several thousand interviews with war correspondents of all stripes.  His book, “Fool’s Errand: Time to end the war in Afghanistan” is an amazing collection on the history of war in Afghanistan, how presidential decisions from Carter to Trump have destroyed the greater Middle East, and how the American people were deceived by the leaders about both the premise of the war and the history of it, now just past its 17th anniversary.  Scott is also managing director of the Libertarian Institute at  LibertarianInstitute.org and editorial director of Anti-war.com, where both Danny and myself, but mostly Danny, have published pieces on the American war state.  The man has an amazing mind and recalls even the tiniest of details about his research and reporting on Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, and so forth.  Please do listen to his show on 90.7 if you’re in the Los Angeles area. If not, grab your podcatcher app and add the Scott Horton show to your podcasts.


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, and Fahim Shirazee!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Intro / outro music “Fortress on a hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

How to go for broke as an anti-war advocate – Scott Horton interview Part 1 – Ep 27

Today, Danny and I present part 1 of our sitdown with Scott Horton, host of Anti-War Radio on KPFK 90.7 FM in Los Angeles, which is also known by its podcast name, the Scott Horton Show.  Scott has hosted Anti-War Radio since 2003 and has done several thousand interviews with war correspondents of all stripes.  His book, “Fool’s Errand: Time to end the war in Afghanistan” is an amazing collection on the history of war in Afghanistan, how presidential decisions from Carter to Trump have destroyed the greater Middle East, and how the American people were deceived by the leaders about both the premise of the war and the history of it, now just past its 17th anniversary.  Scott is also managing director of the Libertarian Institute at  LibertarianInstitute.org and editorial director of Anti-war.com, where both Danny and myself, but mostly Danny, have published pieces on the American war state.  The man has an amazing mind and recalls even the tiniest of details about his research and reporting on Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, and so forth.  Please do listen to his show on 90.7 if you’re in the Los Angeles area. If not, grab your podcatcher app and add the Scott Horton show to your podcasts.

2:59– Scott discusses how he got started on being an anti-war advocate

10:22– Scott discusses writing “Fool’s Errand”

17:14– Scott discusses the impact of high ranking US government officials, even cabinet members, keeping certain information away from the president to demonstrate a specific narrative on foreign policy

27:36– Scott on the current horrifying situation in Afghanistan

36:02– Scott on future predictions for Afghanistan    


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, and Fahim Shirazee!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Intro / outro music “Fortress on a hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

If I had a nickel for every insider attack – the writing on the wall in Afghanistan – Ep 25

It’s been a few weeks since we’ve done a headlines episode, so we pack this one to the gills for you.  We catch up on damage caused by Hurricane Michael to DOD bases and our government’s current climate change denying views, discuss the horrific conditions in Yemen and the U.S.’ choice to ignore the catastrophe there, and Danny takes us through the recent insider attack in Afghanistan and the spotlight it places on the continuing American occupation there.   

1:02– Intro

4:05– President Trump’s remarks on Brett Kavanaugh

5:25– President Bush receiving the Freedom Medal from the National Constitution Center

11:35– Hurricane damage to DOD facilities / use of west coast federal facilities to ship coal

19:00Code Pink military industrial complex report

24:02– Wired article discussing how hackable modern military technology has become

24:53CIA Democrats at the World Socialist Website

30:39Saudi Arabia and the assassination of Jamal Khoshoggi

38:35Humanitarian crisis in Yemen

49:34Insider attack targets senior US commander in Afghanistan


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, Gage Counts, and Fahim Shirazee!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Intro / outro music “Fortress On A Hill” written and performed by Clifton Hicks.  Clifton’s Bandcamp pageClifton’s Patreon page

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

Beware the Muslim dislike oversell – Dr. Rachel Gillum – Ep 23

Can anyone tell ‘ol Henri what a Muslim living in America looks like?  Anybody?!

See, that’s the whole problem.  Being a Muslim means a specific type of religious practice, but which sect?  Which tribe?  Which country or region do they hail from?  Are they practicing the religion presently?  If not, are they simply trying to survive in their culture, albeit one that’s hard and severe for apostates?!  Is it the white guy in a beige track suit with a gold chain around his neck?  Maybe, but nothing says he’s less a Muslim than the former Arab Iraqi translator working at the front desk at State Farm.  It’s a hatred with much history in the US, both socially and politically, used to further foreign policy interests for those vested in its loathsome logic.

And with that loathsome logic in mind, Danny and I present our sit down with Dr. Rachel Gillum, Muslim-American integration expert and author of Muslims in a Post-9/11 America: A Survey of Attitudes and Beliefs and Their Implications for U.S. National Security Policy”


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, and Gage Counts!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Not up for something recurring like Patreon, but want to give a couple bucks?!  Visit Paypal.me/fortressonahill to contribute!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Music provided royalty free by Bensound.com

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.

Danny’s spot on the Zero Hour


Enjoy the show?!  Please leave us a review right here.

Got news to share about our military or veterans?! Or just need to cuss at us for a bit?! Contact us direct by email at fortressonahill@gmail.com

Leave us a voicemail at 860-598-0570.  We might even play it on the podcast!!!

Not a contributor on Patreon? You’re missing out on amazing bonus content! Sign up to be one of our contributors today! – www.patreon.com/fortressonahill

A special thanks to our honorary producers Matthew Hoh, Will Ahrens, and Gage Counts!!  Without you guys, we couldn’t continue our work.  Thank you so much!!!

Facebook – Fortress On A Hill

Twitter – Fortress On A Hill

Soundcloud – Fortress On A Hill

FOH is hosted, written, and produced by Chris ‘Henri’ Henrikson and Danny Sjursen

Cover and website art designed by Brian K. Wyatt Jr. of B-EZ Graphix Multimedia Marketing Agency in Tallehassee, FL

Music provided royalty free by Bensound.com

Note: The views expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts alone, expressed in an unofficial capacity, and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, Department of Defense, or the U.S. government.