Voices of a People's History of the United States, 10th Anniversary Edition
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Selected testimonies to living history—speeches, letters, poems, songs—offered by the people who make history happen, but are often left out of history books: women, workers, nonwhites. Featuring introductions to the original texts by Howard Zinn.
New voices featured in this 10th Anniversary Edition include Chelsea Manning, speaking after her 35-year prison sentence); Naomi Klein, speaking from the Occupy Wall Street encampment in Liberty Square; a member of Dream Defenders, a youth organization that confronts systemic racial inequality; members of the Undocumented Youth movement, who occupied, marched, and demonstrated in support of the DREAM Act; a member of the Day Laborers movement; Chicago Teachers Union strikers; and several critics of the Obama administration, including Glenn Greenwald, on governmental secrecy.
little after seven a.m. The only briefing I got was that they were going to put a company on the ground to sweep through this village. Normally we’d go in beforehand to see if we could find enemy positions or entice people to shoot at us. It was clear and warm and the fog was lifting off the rice paddies. On our first pass we saw a man in uniform carrying a carbine and a pack coming out of a tree line. Thompson said, “Who wants him?” I said, “I’ll take him.” So he aimed the aircraft at him and
right thing by our people out of political necessity and not out of charity or idealism. That day may not come this year. That day may not come during this decade. But it will come, someday! And when that day comes, we shall see the fulfillment of that passage from the Book of Matthew in the New Testament, “That the last shall be first and the first shall be last.” And on that day, our nation shall fulfill its creed—and that fulfillment shall enrich us all. • • • Since its takeover of
period of betrayals. I would like to remind us also that both in 1936–37 and in 1945–55, the betrayals … occurred—and a new order of violence and domination began—with the complicity of the media, of the Congress, and (forgive me for thinking) of the public also. For the media never asked what was behind the great crisis. It didn’t even feel to ask why its own men—like George Polk—were being murdered in Greece (and by whom). It never asked who started—and how the Korean War started. What were
live with the moral burden of these deaths? …. From a medical point of view, the public has been misled concerning the catastrophic nature of wounds and injuries that will befall combatants and civilians. Are we as Americans willing to live through the evening news tallies of dead and wounded Americans knowing in advance that this war is avoidable? As a mother I am keenly aware of the long-term medical and environmental consequences that may occur in the Middle East region and which may indeed
power-drunk chimpanzees, am I in danger of wrecking the morale of our soldiers fighting and dying in the Middle East? Their morale, like so many bodies, is already shot to pieces. They are being treated, as I never was, like toys a rich kid got for Christmas. When you get to my age, if you get to my age, which is 81, and if you have reproduced, you will find yourself asking your own children, who are themselves middle-aged, what life is all about. I have seven kids, four of them adopted. Many