David Hartsough is a Co-Founder of World BEYOND War, a global movement to end war – making it as illegal to kill people outside countries as it is inside! He has been Waging Peace since meeting Martin Luther King at age 15 – from civil-rights sit-ins to blocking nuclear weapons plants at LIvermore Laboratory. He’s blocked trains carrying munitions to fuel Central American wars — enforcing international law as laid out at Nuremberg. He’s Waged Peace in some of the most dangerous and war-torn places on the planet — including the Philippines, Iran, Kosovo and even the Soviet Union. Arthur met him in the early 60’s when David, a fellow Quaker, led the San Francisco to Moscow peace march — to end the cold war before it ended all of us!
At a time when the US and the World are teetering on the bring of tyranny, ecocide and nuclear extinction, we’ll talk to David about how we can inspire the frustrated and angry to gain real power by renouncing violence and waging peace!
David recommended these books: “From Dictatorship to Democracy”, “Waging Nonviolent Struggle”, “Global Security System: An Alternative to War” Also the film “A Force More Powerful” and these websites: ChooseDemocracy.us, WorldBeyondWar.org, Nonviolentpeaceforce.org, ThePoorPeoplesCampaign.org and Divestfromwarmachine.org
David invites you to buy his book “Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activist”! You can read free chapters in PDF format here.
David Hartsough knows how to get in the way! He has used his body to block Navy ships headed for Vietnam and trains loaded with munitions on their way to El Salvador and Nicaragua. He has crossed borders to meet “the enemy” in East Berlin, Castro’s Cuba, and present-day Iran. He has marched with mothers confronting a violent regime in Guatemala and stood with refugees threatened by death squads in the Philippines. In this talk, David explores the power of nonviolence as he has witnessed it unfolding around the world.
Some thoughts about Gene Sharp from David Hartsough, Director of Peaceworkers January 31, 2018
What a mighty contribution Gene Sharp has made to humankind’s understanding of nonviolent struggle and the power of nonviolent action.
Through Gene’s work and writing people around the world have learned about the power and effectiveness of nonviolent struggle and have put that understanding into action and built powerful campaigns and movements to create positive change in their societies including building people power movements to overthrow many dictators and governments which were not listening to their people. We and all future generations are grateful for Gene’s life and all he has contributed. With deep appreciation for a LIFE WELL LIVED!!! Gene Sharp, PRESENTE!!
A couple memories of our work together.
Gene and I were in Moscow at the invitation of the Living Ring after the August attempted coup d’etat against Gorbachev in 1991. Boris Yeltsin and the others opposing the coup were hiding out in the Parliament building, while 10,000 people (the Living Ring) surrounded it for three days and nights nonviolently facing the tanks and soldiers who had order to attack. The Living Ring wanted training in how to nonviolently defeat future attempted coups against the government. Gene gave talks and we led workshops on nonviolent means to defeat further coup d’etats. It was a real privilege to work with Gene who selflessly shared the power of nonviolent struggle with people, groups and movements who wanted to use peaceful methods to challenge oppression and injustice. Continue reading →
If Ammon Hennacy were around to update his 1970 posthumously published The One-Man Revolution in America, he would likely add a chapter on David Hartsough (b. 1941). For nearly sixty years, this Quaker-inspired activist has resisted war, racism, and injustice at home and literally around the world. Hennacy’s book was a veritable Profiles inCourage for America’s unsung peacemakers and radicals. In Waging Peace, David Hartsough brings that tradition up-to-date by forty years, every year of which includes his actions of protest and courage.
This autobiographical record begins with David’s Ohio roots. His mother was a first-grade teacher and an activist, his father was a Congergational minister. At age seven, young Hartsough faced down a group of town bullies who had bloodied him. Later, he sought out—and became friends with—their jefe.
From there the story moves quickly to Pennsylvania, where the teenage David organizes his first peace protest (at a Nike missile site); then to Virginia, where the angered patron of a segregated lunch counter David and others were attempting to integrate threatens his life; and then on to the White House, Berlin, Red Square, and even the Holy Land, all places where he demonstrates nonviolently for reconciliation. The book concludes half a century later, with his arrest outside a U.S. drone base.
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New book relates ‘global adventures of lifelong activist’
by the Rev. Sharon Delgado on January 26, 2015
Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activistby veteran activist David Hartsough is part autobiography, part recent history, and part call to action. This new book shows how a commitment to active nonviolence can plant the seeds and provide the impetus for significant social transformation.
In 2012 I was arrested with David and Jan Hartsough, Shirley Osgood and Janie Kesselman at a demonstration at Beale Air Force Base, near my home in Northern California. We were the first of many to be arrested at anti-drone protests at Beale, home of the Global Hawk, a surveillance drone that helps identify targets for armed Predator and Reaper drones.
Our arrests resulted in a trial that generated significant publicity. Our case and others like it at bases around the country got people discussing and questioning the morality of killing people by remote control.
Throughout the trial, David urged our lawyers to focus on the Nuremburg Principles and International Law, even though the judge refused to consider these factors as a defense. We were found “guilty” of trespassing onto base property.
Before being sentenced we each gave a statement to the court. David’s complete sentencing statementis an addendum toWaging Peace..
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By Winslow Myers
There were giants on the earth in those days . . . (Genesis 6:4)
The fear that we citizens of the United States have been seduced into since 9/11 spreads across our benighted nation like a fog, inhibiting all policy alternatives not based in blind vengefulness. Special are those who have the spiritual clear-sightedness and persistence to make people-oriented global connections that pierce the fog of fear with the light of visionary possibility.
One such giant is David Hartsough, whose vivid, even hair-raising, memoir of a lifetime of peace activism, Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activist, has just been published by PM press. It ought to be required reading for every U.S. citizen befogged by the crude polarization between Islamic extremism and the equally violent, ineffective, but seemingly endless Western military reaction it has elicited.
It hardly seems possible that Hartsough has been able to crowd into one lifetime all his deeds of creative nonviolence. He was there with Martin Luther King in the late fifties in the South. He was there when a train loaded with bullets and bombs on their way to arm right-wing death squads in Central America severed the leg of his friend Brian Willson in California. His initiatives of support for nonviolent resistance movements span both decades and continents, from efforts to get medical supplies to the North Vietnamese, to reconciliation among Israelis and Palestinians, to support for Russian dissidents as the Soviet Union was breaking up, to the resistance to Marcos in the Philippines, and on and on. Hartsough’s book thus becomes a remarkably comprehensive alternative history to set against “the official story” of America’s—and many other nations’—often brutal and misguided reliance upon military intervention.
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The ordinary, extraordinary life of David Hartsough Book Review by Ken Butigan — November 12, 2014
Years ago, my friend Anne Symens-Bucher would regularly punctuate our organizing meetings with a wistful cry, “I just want to live an ordinary life!” Anne ate, drank and slept activism over the decade she headed up the Nevada Desert Experience, a long-term campaign to end nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site. After a grueling conference call, a mountainous fundraising mailing, or days spent at the edge of the sprawling test site in 100-degree weather, she and I would take a deep breath and wonder aloud how we could live the ordinary, nonviolent life without running ourselves into the ground.
What we didn’t mean was: “How do we hold on to our radical ideals but also retreat into a middle-class cocoon?” No, it was something like: “How can we stay the course but not give up doing all the ordinary things that everyone else usually does in this one-and-only life?” Somewhere in this question was the desire to not let who we are — in our plain old, down-to-earth ordinariness — get swallowed up by the blurring glare of the 24/7 activist fast lane.
These ruminations came back to me as I plunged into the pages of David Hartsough’s new memoir, “Waging Peace: Global Adventures of a Lifelong Activist.” David has been a friend for 30 years, and over that time I’ve rarely seen him pass up a chance to jump into the latest fray with both feet — something he’d been doing long before we met, as his book attests. For nearly six decades he’s been organizing for nonviolent change — with virtually every campaign, eventually getting tangled up with one risky nonviolent action after another. Therefore one might be tempted to surmise that David is yet another frantic activist on the perennial edge of burnout. Just reading his book, with its relentless kaleidoscope of civil resistance on many continents, can be dizzying — what must it have been like to live it? If anyone would qualify for not living the ordinary life, it would seem to be David Hartsough.
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