Dear Founding Members and Friends,
Thank you for your support and generosity this past year. 2023 was fraught with many continuing challenges to peace. The U.S. government spent well over $1 trillion related to war and preparation for war. The U.S. distributed weapons to countries worldwide, created new military bases near perceived enemies, continued to threaten China, Russia, Korea, Iran, and others, and deployed nuclear weapons so close to these countries that an “accidental” nuclear holocaust and World War III are more likely than ever. To add to the global tensions, the U.S. supplied Ukraine with cluster munitions banned in more than 100 countries because they kill children and other innocent people long after they’re dropped, and it provided weapons and logistical support used to murder thousands of innocent Palestinians.
Research published this year by US Peace Prize recipient Costs of War concluded that deaths related to our post-9/11 wars have risen to about 4.5-4.6 million and counting. In addition, about 38 million people have been displaced by these ongoing wars. Most Americans seem unaware that our wars in the Middle East and Africa continued throughout the year.
With U.S.-fueled wars raging, we must acknowledge, honor, and reinforce those working to end war and militarism. These are the true American heroes. The Foundation is the only organization whose sole mission is to celebrate role models who will inspire other Americans to speak out against war and work for peace. By advancing our knowledge about and showing appreciation for heroic U.S. peacemakers, new role models can shape public discourse and education.
· Publishing the US Peace Registry, which honors and documents the antiwar and peace activities of individuals and organizations.
· Awarding the annual US Peace Prize to an individual or organization that has made an exceptional effort to stop wars and work for peace.
· Raising funds to build the US Peace Memorial in Washington, DC.
Please work with us to end the U.S. war culture by honoring courageous Americans who stand for peace. Your contribution shows that you value and support our programs, demonstrating your commitment to building the US Peace Memorial.
If you are already a Founding Member, please make your 2024 contribution today. If not, please join us! Become a Founding member with a $100 donation. Your name will be included at www.uspeacememorial.org/Donors.htm; in any future editions of our book, ENDING U.S. WARS; and, eventually, at the National Monument we will build in Washington, DC.
We appreciate your generosity and support. I am inspired by all that you do for peace.
Michael Knox, Ph.D. Chair
BRIEF REVIEW OF THE YEAR
Early on, we set four benchmarks to achieve before announcing our national campaign to raise the millions of dollars needed to build the US Peace Memorial as a national monument. In the press release to announce the campaign, we want to be able to say that we have one thousand Founding Members representing all fifty states, have honored one thousand individuals and organizations in the US Peace Registry who are working for peace, and have already raised one million dollars in donations.
This chart shows how we are doing and where we need your help before we can move forward.
The Foundation has achieved 92 percent of its goal of having Founding Members from every state. We now have Founding Members from forty-six states (plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands). The five leading states in terms of membership are Florida (133), Minnesota (44), California (43), New York (21), and Massachusetts (20). Help us increase the number of supporters in your state. Please help us add Founding Members from the four remaining states that still need to be represented: Delaware, Mississippi, Nebraska, and South Dakota.
We have achieved 49 percent of our goal of one thousand Founding Members. We must have 512 more Founding Members from throughout the country. Our Founding Member list includes 444 individuals and 44 organizations/businesses, 12 of which are faith-based. If you are one of the nearly 6,000 people on our email list who have not yet joined, please take action today – become a Founding Member. By supporting the Foundation, you will be working for peace.
The US Peace Registry documents and honors the antiwar efforts of Americans. Anyone who has spoken out publicly against war can submit a description of their activities and apply for consideration. What better way to end current U.S. wars than to have more people speak out against them? There are many ways to make your voice heard. We recognize and honor the work of 209 individuals and 94 organizations that are role models for a broad range of peace and antiwar activities.
We have received donations totaling $221,843 toward the $1,000,000 benchmark we must reach before publicly announcing our major fundraising campaign to build the US Peace Memorial as a national monument. If you can make a charitable contribution, please consider the importance of supporting our goal of moving the U.S. toward a culture of peace.
US PEACE PRIZE
The 2023 US Peace Prize was awarded to the National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth (NNOMY) “For National Efforts to Stop U.S. Military Influence on Young People, Saving Lives Here and Abroad.”
Michael Knox, Chair of the US Peace Memorial Foundation, noted, “NNOMY shields young lives from some of the strongest influences of militarism. Your work not only saves U.S. lives by dissuading young people from joining the military - it also saves the lives of people in distant countries who they could harm once they were part of the U.S. war machine. NNOMY positively impacts countless young adults, and its nationwide efforts involve the contributions of many stellar antiwar figures and organizations. The US Peace Prize is a prestigious honor that will help call attention to and reinforce your important work for peace.”
Several network members, including Kendall Brown, Gary Ghirardi, Rick Jahnkow, and Cassy Hernandez, accepted the award. Rick Jahnkow, the organization’s Steering Committee Representative, responded, “NNOMY is grateful for receiving this award and the recognition it will, hopefully, bring to the urgent need to counter the militarization of young people. Protesting war once it begins is never enough; if we are ever going to have a truly effective peace movement, it must include proactively reaching out to and engaging with younger generations in order to groom them to become activists for peace, instead of war. It is this long-term vision that NNOMY brings to the peace movement.”
Other US Peace Prize nominees in 2023 were Gerry Condon, Francesco Da Vinci, Daniel Ellsberg, Friends Committee on National Legislation, Abby Martin, and Jill Stein. Read about the antiwar/peace activities of all recipients and nominees in the US Peace Registry.
National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth joins previous US Peace Prize recipients Costs of War, World BEYOND War, Christine Ahn, Ajamu Baraka, David Swanson, Ann Wright, Veterans For Peace, Kathy Kelly, CODEPINK Women for Peace, Chelsea Manning, Medea Benjamin, Noam Chomsky, Dennis Kucinich, and Cindy Sheehan.
HONORED INDIVIDUALS and ORGANIZATIONS
This year, the US Peace Registry recognized and documented the antiwar work of the following Americans and U.S. organizations. You can read about their specific contributions and activities at www.uspeacememorial.org/Registry.htm.
COMMUNITY PEACEMAKER TEAMS
FRANCESCO DA VINCI
GERALD R. GIOGLIO
ROGER D. HARRIS
INTERNATIONAL PHYSICIANS for the PREVENTION of NUCLEAR WAR
DR. JILL STEIN
Our Founding Members are helping us find and choose the best antiwar and pro-peace statements by well-known Americans. Eventually, the selected quotes will be chiseled on the US Peace Memorial we will build in Washington, DC.
Here are two quotations under consideration:
Founding Members are encouraged to help choose quotes. We seek well-referenced statements to inspire Americans to speak out against war and work for peace. As new quotations are vetted, they are posted on FFacebook, TTwitter, and IInstagram for review. We invite you to post any new quotations you may find and your comments on these social media sites. See www.uspeacememorial.org/Quotes.htm for more details about the quotation vetting and selection process. Let us know your favorites – and share any great quotes we may have overlooked.
Through the generosity of Founding Members, and at no cost to the Foundation, ads were placed in the Veterans For Peace annual convention program, at the NoWar2023 Conference: Nonviolent Resistance to Militarism, and on social media, including:
We continue to be available for presentations, including this one in October with Chris Nelson of KZFR Community Radio for the Peace and Social Justice Program in Chico, CA. Listen to this 20-minute interview about the need for the US Peace Memorial at https://www.youtube.com.
Until it is built, this book is the US Peace Memorial.
To increase the number of people who will read the book, we reduced the price of the E-book from $9.99 to $2.99, the lowest price Amazon would allow. Order at Kindle All proceeds from the sale of ENDING U.S. WARS go directly to the US Peace Memorial Foundation, a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization.
Order and wear our t-shirt to show your support for the Foundation and the antiwar/pro-peace message: www.cafepress.com/uspeacememorial.
You can purchase other items with our logo, including buttons, yard signs, tote bags, baby shirts, and even a shirt for Fido. Please encourage your friends and everyone you meet to think about peace and join us. It’s always time to get the conversation started!
Thank you to our Board of Directors: Medea Benjamin, Dr. Lucy Bradley-Springer, Margaret Kimberley, Jolyon Sasse, and Dr. Charles F. Clark (emeritus), editors Tracy Blalock and Beverly Lowenstein, and volunteers including Phil Anderson, Dr. Deborah D. Buffton, Sue Chen, Dr. David Chiriboga, Tom Cloud, Michael Dwyer, Dr. Martha Friedrich, Roger Harris, Paula Heitzman, James Knox, John Knox, Donald Martin, Dr. Lynette J. Menezes, Lou Pumphrey, and Dr. Art Ulene. Very little would have been accomplished during the year without these incredible and dedicated supporters. We greatly appreciate their contributions.
We need your help, too. Without your ongoing generosity and commitment, the US Peace Memorial will never become a National Monument that can help move the United States toward a culture of peace.
Those of us who work for peace are pulled in many directions. Antiwar resources have been stretched thin, and consensus seems elusive as the country’s militarism maintains a fixed hold on our culture. The endless wars will stop only when the American people demand it, and the more people who speak, the louder our voices will be. We need your help, now more than ever, to make our voices heard.
o Become a Founding Member to add your name to our growing list of nearly 488 visionary leaders and be permanently associated with the US Peace Memorial.
o Mail a check to: US Peace Memorial Foundation • 334 East Lake Road #136 • Palm Harbor, FL 34685.
· Already a Founding Member? Please make your 2024 contribution.
· Move to the next donor level? Credit for your contributions is cumulative. Six donor levels are included at www.uspeacememorial.org/Donors.htm, from $100 to over $10,000. Hundreds of donors have moved to higher levels by making annual contributions.
Please volunteer. Our volunteers are the backbone of the foundation. Even if it’s only a few hours a month, your help is greatly appreciated. As a nationwide grassroots organization with annual expenses of less than $18,000, we are especially in need of:
· marketing specialists
Choose any or all of these options – you can inspire other Americans to speak out against war and to work for peace.
US Peace Memorial Foundation, Inc. is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) public charity, EIN: 20-3915218.
Donations to the Foundation are tax-deductible to the extent provided by U.S. law.
Florida registration #: CH20094. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE FLORIDA DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800-435-7352) WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.
Copyright 2024, US Peace Memorial Foundation, Inc.