It’s a ripsnorting, ’60s style, “give me an F,” punks and folkies wailing, no-makeup-wearing Cindy Sheehan agitating, bring the troops home now, my mother-in-law and the other hippies will be there, good old anti-war rally and free concert as Operation Ceasefire seeks to rattle the windows of power tomorrow, Saturday, September 24, all afternoon and evening at the Washington Monument in DC.
Promoted as a “centerpiece of what is expected to be 4 days of enormous protests in nation’s capital in support of a full withdrawal of U.S. forces from the quagmire in Iraq,” the show, hosted by ex-Dead Kennedys frontman and inveterate iconoclast Jello Biafra, includes the following performers:
2:05 PM – Machetres
2:30 PM – Living Things
3:18 PM – Joan Baez
3:50 PM – Wayne Kramer & The Bellrays
4:41 PM – Steve Earle
5:31 PM- The Coup
6:23 PM – Sweet Honey in the Rock
7:09 PM – The Evens
7:54 PM – Ted Leo + Pharmacists
8:50 PM – Head Roc
9:37 PM – Thievery Corporation
10:59 PM – Pure Belly Dance
11:27 PM – Bouncing Souls
12:12 AM – Le Tigre
Speaking between musical acts will be Biafra, the “Rosa Parks of the anti-war movement” Cindy Sheehan, Representative Lynn Woolsey, Washington Wizard forward Etan Thomas, former State Department officer Ann Wright, national radio commentator Jim Hightower, Fernando Suarez del Solar of Gold Star Families, Reverend Graylan Hagler, Cindy Corrie (mother of Rachel Corrie, who was killed in the West Bank), Code Pink and Global Exchange co-founder Medea Benjamin, the DC Guerilla Poets, investigative journalist Greg Palast, Iraq Vets Against the War co-founder Michael Hoffman, and Anti-Flag drummer Pat Thetic.
Operation Ceasefire is sponsored by United for Peace & Justice, which has planned “three days of action” (Sept. 24-26) to stop the war in Iraq. The Operation Ceasefire concert will immediately follow a rally and march that begins at the Ellipse near the White House at 11:30 am and will at end at the Washington Monument.
United for Peace & Justice’s rather uncompromising mission statement trumpets, “Leave no military bases behind, End the looting of Iraq, Stop the torture, Stop bankrupting our communities, No military recruitment in our schools,” and veritably shreiks, “It’s time to hold all pro-war politicians accountable for the deaths, the destruction, the lies, and the toll on our communities! Join United for Peace and Justice in Washington, D.C. for three massive days of action against the war.”
Though the cause is deadly serious, the performers and intensity of rhetoric ensure a high entertainment value for the whole affair as well – will Forrest Gump make an appearance?
On the Cindy Sheehan front, Seven Stories is publishing 10,000 copies of Dear President Bush, a pamphlet interview of Sheehan with Open Media series co-founder Greg Ruggiero in time for tomorrow’s rally/concert. Sheehan’s Not One More Mother’s Child will be the launch title for Koa Books, which is planning a 25,000 first printing for its November 11 (Veteran’s Day) publication date, according to Publisher’s Weekly.
Ruggiero met Sheehan at LaGuardia airport on September 12 and interviewed her during the car ride to a press conference. Dear President Bush is in interview format. “This is the abbreviated version of a longer book to come later,” says Ruggiero. “The idea is to get something out fast and get it into people’s hands.”
Sell to the sold, I always say.