From left, Sarah Wesley, Frank Dorrel, Robert Scheer and Eric Ortiz.

Since the tragedy of Sept. 11, 2001, the United States has been caught in a cycle of endless war. In this critical election season, many wonder whether American foreign policy will ever lead to peace. How do we break the cycle of bloated military spending, and can American militarism be stopped or reimagined?

Over the weekend, Americans witnessed the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. While it may seem as if politicians on both sides of the aisle are caught up in the pro-military, nationalistic rhetoric currently dominating our foreign policy, there are still pro-peace politicians fighting for a change.

One example is Rep. Barbara Lee, the California Democrat who cast the single dissenting vote in Congress when the Authorization for Use of Military Force was passed three days after 9/11. Fifteen years later, she still is fighting to repeal the legislation. “It’s time that we repeal that blank check,” she said in a recent interview. “Otherwise, we’re going to continue in this state of endless war.”

At 1 p.m. PDT (4 p.m. EDT) on Thursday, Truthdig Editor in Chief Robert Scheer and his team sat down with special guest Frank Dorrel for a live conversation streamed directly to our Facebook page. We discussed how we can make more people aware of U.S. militarism and how we can strengthen the peace movement.

Dorrel, a longtime peace activist, publisher and filmmaker, just released a new film, “Paying the Price for Peace.” This documentary highlights the story of S. Brian Willson, a Vietnam veteran who became an anti-war activist and lost both his legs in 1987 while protesting at the Concord Naval Weapons Station, which supplied arms to the Contras.

Dorrel, an Air Force veteran and current member of Veterans for Peace, also helped start the Arlington West Memorial project in Santa Monica, Calif. Since 2004, this temporary memorial has been erected every Sunday to honor fallen Americans and acknowledge the human cost of war.

Check out past editions of “Live at Truthdig” on our YouTube channel.

—Posted by Emma Niles


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