Interview with Nicholas DeGraff of Peace Fresno

[ Aaron Kilner, known by Peace Fresno activists as Aaron Stokes ]

Nicholas DeGraff of Peace Fresno and I spoke on the evening of April 16, 2004. He was in Santa Cruz for the Northern California Peace Centers Conference, and was a presenter at the conference.

The Fresno-based activist group Peace Fresno was infiltrated by an agent working for the Fresno Sheriff’s Department. Aaron Kilner, known by Peace Fresno activists as Aaron Stokes, died in a motorcycle accident on August 30, 2003. Kilner’s obituary in The Fresno Bee identified him as a member of the Fresno County Sheriff’s department and went on to say that he was “assigned to the anti-terrorist team.” Fresno activists believe that this “anti-terrorist team” is the recently formed Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF).

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Transnational Corporations Cut, Kill, and Export in Olancho, Honduras

Honduran community activist Gilberto Flores and Jenni Petullo of Rights Action spoke about the history and current political situation in Honduras on April 13 at the Resource Center for Nonviolence in Santa Cruz.

Privatization of public services, the building of mega-dams, deforestation, and harmful mining practices, as well as human rights abuses are among the challenges facing Honduran communities. Flores and Petullo discussed how these problems fit within the context of corporate globalization, international financial institutions, and multilateral trade agreements.

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Critical Resistance; Breaking it Down

Critical Resistance’s ‘National Field Organizer’ spoke with people in Santa Cruz that are working to start a local chapter.

Critical Resistance seeks to build an international movement to end the Prison Industrial Complex by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes us safe. We believe that basic necessities such as food, shelter, and freedom are what really make our communities secure. As such, our work is part of global struggles against inequality and powerlessness. The success of the movement requires that it reflect communities most affected by the PIC. Because we seek to abolish the PIC, we cannot support any work that extends its life or scope.

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