Going round in circles

While it is true that two paper manufacturers invented the first piloted ascent of a balloon, and that two bicycle retailers invented and flew the first successful airplane, and that a patent officer revolutionized physics, it is also true that these people did not put other people’s wellbeing at risk in doing so. Picking up a task that you have little or no previous knowledge about can be regarded as a noble thing. It may indicate that you are courageous and eager to learn something new, and your fresh mind may help improving established practices, but it comes with a responsibility for those affected by your actions.

A society which is protecting people from having to take the consequences of their actions is not only undermining the idea of responsibility, it keeps people from learning their skill, improving their level of consciousness, and/or to function as part of something larger. The history of educating children has many according examples for both responsible and irresponsible training.

There must be personal consequences for those failing to act in the best interest of everyone concerned, be it intentionally, carelessly, or just ignorantly so. Not as a punishment, not draconically imposed, but in order to deepen the experience of having found out about something that has not worked. Bygones must only become bygones once the lesson is learned; otherwise the wasted opportunity for understanding the causes of a problem tends to solidify the malpractice.

But in certain circles we just run away from responsibility. We fail, and then we cannot even apologize. Usually we deny the failure altogether, blame it on the affected person who must have attracted the mishap through „bad energy“ or „wrong behaviour“ somehow. Soon enough, we even must not talk about the incident at all, for it belongs to ancient history.

Because we deny ourselves to take a closer look at what exactly did not work out, we rarely find a constructive solution; because we shy away from having people get confronted personally with the results of their decisions or actions, we go through the same situation again and again and again, until one of the silly ideas we randomly use to replace other dysfunctional ideas with happens to work out.

Yes, we rant a lot, incessantly. There are grievances that want to make themselves get heard, and we’ll be incapable of growing out of this mood until the need for getting heard is being met.

The trouble with the global structure of society is not so much that outdated, dysfunctional patterns have been adopted and perpetuated; the trouble is, that the system is dysfunctional and there is nothing you can do about it – unless learning is encouraged to happen in a manner in which failure-induced grief is a part of the normal stages of fully comprehending the nature of an event rather than getting labelled as „egoistic“, „complaining“, „negative-minded“, or „backwards-oriented“.

This understanding happens inwardly, individually, before it can express itself collectively, and no system imposed from above, or from without, can make a difference. Systems cannot comprehend. Only humans can.

Truth doesn’t hide behind acronyms

I thought I had seen them all; all those groups which run by pompous names that they choose to disguise with funny acronyms like STOP and DENY and CASH. I have been lucky enough to not having been stopped by STOP, and not having been denied what I needed by DENY (though I couldn’t avoid getting mugged by CASH), but I have become aware of enough other cases to understand that this has actually been a matter of chance. This has become pretty clear while I was attending meetings of KING and BOSS, two institutions at the mentioning of which almost everyone is rolling their eyes. All of us have made our experiences with them, and all of us have been shaking heads over how these people operate affairs.

To begin with, it already makes you wonder how a seemingly decent person becomes a snooty ignorant bitch the very moment he or she joins one of these groups. It almost looks like, on entry, some part of their brains get lobotomized, making them completely incapable of rational thought, reasonable action, and feeling compassion for others.

E.g. the first person to file a complaint with them is regarded as “the victim”, per definition, the other, of course, must become ” the villain” who can expect to receive strong scolding including elements of intimidation. The basis of the groups’ decisions is hearsay, throughout, upon which opinions get built which have everything to do with personal preferences and nothing to do with facts.
In case a “villain” is unwillig to surrender another institution called COWDUNG comes into play which uses progressive methods of manipulation like ‘Neuro-Linguistic Progrmming’, Mediation, and ‘Non-Violent Communication’ to determine that “the villain” is actually the villain.
And so it goes on.
As I said, I thought I had seen them all. At least enough of them to have an educated guess at how all the others are operating.

I was wrong.

By the end of last week I have been attending a meeting of what could be regarded as the secret crown of all the other pseudo-governmental groups, and their acronym might as well have been HELL. If you have ever been walking in the hallways of power, if you have ever lingered among members of government or high finance, this is how you may imagine it felt to be there with HELL. Their field of activity is within the realm of financial assets and immovables, and immovable, indeed, were their. stonelike faces and the notions that guided their decisions. One of them impatiently twitching a finger was as much as they allowed themselves to give insight into their actual thoughts about some petty farmer explaining his being passionate about his work and being concerned over what happens to the land that is supposed to get sold to some mining company. HELL must have come to the conclusion that these peasants were suffering from an incurable delusion about the value of money — the stuff you can use to buy food from elsewhere — but as it was unlikely that these poor souls could be talked out of their misinformed condition the obvious answer was, Thanks so much for sharing with us; we assure you that your worries are baseless, and that we will Inform you in case the situation changes.
With that we have been dismissed.

The very instant the door closed in our backs, the feeling of suffocation immediately stopped and fresh air filled my lungs again.
Dude, was I just thinking, Occupy Townhall?
If only that were the solution…

I. R. Rational

At the end of my last posting I asked the question, Leaving culture aside, not negating it, but looking beyond it — what do we see?
This sentence came as sort of a surprise to me. I have been playing with the eye sight metaphor, intending to point at a view that overcomes the separation at the core of our crises. Yet what popped up was a genuine question that went one step further and to which I did not have an answer myself: who are we?
I better go pondering the more personal version of it first… lol

On the blindness of scientism

One famous Indian once said that it was not a measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.
I would like to add that, in turn, it is not a sign of health in a society when it is unable to accept, and integrate itself into, the suchness of existence. If it has, at its basis, the idea of improving on nature it is well on its way to insanity.
For in that case it regards itself — culture — as external to, and separate from, nature, a category it introduces to name the thing it seeks to manipulate and control.
And the whole practice of substituting vitamin pills for fruits, plastic packaging for freshness, hydroponics for soil, legal bondage for empathic relationships, social insurance for compassion, money for trust, horsepower for horses, governance for personal responsibility, rational for reasonable, and all the rest of it, reeks of manipulation.

Science and technology, along with politics and religion, are fine as far as they go, but as solutions to our crisis they must fail, for they are expressions of the paradigm of separateness from, and control over, ‘nature’. They can reveal aspects of reality, yet in no way can they claim to be the only way, or source, of knowledge that there is. For their understanding of reality is limited while existence is infinitely larger and deeper than their rational scope.

We have observed what came from giving way to pure rationality. Just look at the world of today. If we are engulfed in conflict and misery it is because, among others, rationalism lacks an ethical dimension, a social dimension, a spiritual dimension, and an emotional dimension, all of which are defining us as human beings. That which is ‘irrational’ is part of reality — the totality of existence. The sense for it is not a glitch, a dysfunction, or a human disease, but exists for a reason. When we exclude it from our ‘calculation’ we are ignoring the deeper roots of the world’s condition, and therefore the way forward, both of which literally lie outside science’s view and technology’s grasp.

Our society may be profoundly sick (or maybe it is just a passing adolescent phase), but as a species, we are neither dysfunctional mutations nor diseased miscreations (born sinners, as the Bible goes); we are wearing cultural glasses that impair our sight. Leaving culture aside, not negating it, but looking beyond it — what do we see?

Poland caught the flu

From a recent newspaper article –

“We just want to heal our state from some sicknesses so that it may recover”, said the foreign minister. The previous government had been following a leftist policy, “as if the world, similar to the Marxist idea, had to automatically develop into just one direction, a new mix of cultures and races, a world of bicycle drivers and vegetarians who invest in renewable energies alone and fight against all forms of religion.” This had nothing to do with his country’s values.

If it is true that for every force there is a counter force the number of muesli eaters out there must equal the size of a country already. Congratulations, everybody. The second Green Revolution seems to be well on its way

Refoaming the system

“This issue [to reform Auroville’s entry process] – which should have been a normal phase of changing and renewal of a policy – has become a winning and losing situation […]
Yes, we could have insisted and we have no doubt this proposal would have gone through easily and if the present Entry Service did not accept it, the community could have asked them to step down and a new one formed to implement it  […] 
Or the community could have imposed the present Entry Service to implement it. These are both nightmare scenarios and we did not wish to create neither of them.” 
(Report of the Entry Task Force, a residents’ initiative)

Now imagine a similar situation in any of the Western democracies.
Would a citizens’ movement have the power to overthrow an administrative body just like this?
And if they had the power — or any political party had it – would they step back from their demands on encountering strong objections?
Would anybody in a position of strength try to make an attempt to come to a consensus with the opposing forces, with the help of a facilitator?

Auroville surely needs reforms, revolutionary changes even, on all levels of public life. But if you asked me what’s so special about this township, it is events like the above I would point at – people daring to live by a higher consciousness. Knowing that overpowering another will not create solutions, only conflict. Or, in more brash words, War doesn’t decide who is right, just who is left.

Am I out to saving the world?

Definitely not.
What do you mean by ‘world’ anyway?
The Universe? – It doesn’t need to be saved.
The Planet? – So far we cannot destroy it.
The Biosphere? – Well, one could say that man, being the most powerful species on Earth, has some responsibility for his fellow creatures. But that derives from a human understanding of ‘morality’, ‘rights’, and ‘justice’ or, on the material level, of ‘resources’ and ‘life stock’. It has nothing to do with laws of nature – if they even exist outside our intellectual concepts of the fabric of reality.
So maybe saving the world is about saving our species, our civilization, the status quo. And I am not even trying to help that. It would mean that I’d impose my idea of what the world should look like on others. It would mean that they’d have to live under conditions that I find to be useful, regardless of their needs, and I think that is a fascist way of handling the situation we’re in.

I mean, it’s alright to find likeminded folks to join forces. But there’s a limit to how many allies you can bind. Have you ever explained your world view to another person, or have you ever tried to help them, and then noticed how many reject your view or your way of helping? Even if you had the power to force ‘their advantage’ onto them, the only thing you can achieve by that is turning an advantage into misery for them.
So what can we do at all?

As far as I’m concerned the only thing we can actually change is ourselves: our way of looking at the world, our emotional, rational and behavioural reactions, and our expectations. Altering ourselves can be learned easily and it doesn’t require the smallest piece of technology. Not even a pencil.
That sounds revolutionary but it is knowledge having stood the test of time for thousands of years.
That sounds selfish but the result of changing yourself into someone content is a human being able to relate peacefully to others.
That sounds destructive, and in fact it is. It destroys the notion of being a separate self and creates a feeling of oneness that comes from deep within. It destroys my ability to act loyal towards faceless institutions and replaces it with loyalty towards all forms of life. It destroys consumerism and progress-ism and gigant-ism in favour of sustainable living. It destroys the belief into atomistic models of reality so I am able to mentally return to where I am never able to quit physically – interdependency.

If you are content with what you have – what you ARE – then there is no need to argue with others over world views and resources and saving the world. There is no need for a common system of governance, trade, administration, farming. There is also no need for an objective language (which is physically impossible to have anyway). And most important: there is no need for waiting for the right moment, a trustworthy politician, or a ‘necessary’ invention to actually make the world a better place.

You can argue that backing down from the world’s affairs doesn’t solve anything. But the same goes for forceful intervention which we have tried over and over again, this situation being a result of it. Top-down doesn’t work. It never did.
After all, what does a group, organisation, institution, society, or even mankind consist of? It is persons, isn’t it? You and me. What each of us believes, thinks, says, decides, does, sums up to the thing we call society. It makes a difference, however small you may think it is.
So, whether I try to change society or myself, it is a systems approach because I face the situation at its very root: human behaviour, and at the root of that: human thought.
Only that, starting out small, I am not dependent on others.
When I decide not to take a gun then war stops right where I am.
When I buy less stuff then consumerism ends at my door.
When I step back for the benefit of another person then greed gets extinct before my eyes.
When I share my surplus with others then poverty ends where I live.
When I neither demand / expect nor obey the culture of dominance collapses.
When I see similarities instead of differences human unity becomes real.
Trying to change the world without having to change oneself right now is an attempt to have the cake and eat it, too.

Why I had to leave the movement to actually join the movement

Recently, I read a blog that really impressed me with its reasonable criticizm of The Zeitgeist Movement (TZM). Although Jacque Fresco’s vision of a resource-based economy (RBE) is one of the most desirable to me, Fresco and TZM are missing one thing that is absolutely necessary for bringing about fundamental change: The values on which an RBE is based have to be part of people’s world view FIRST, before they are going to actually work towards a transition. Otherwise people will just perpetuate their previous ways until someone does the revolution for them.
The real revolution takes place in people’s individual heads, just like Jiddu Krishnamurti said, or it will stay “a theoretical fantasy that will appease those who still want both their gadgets along with their clean air”. As a matter of fact, many TZM members are in for saving their asses from the grip of impending poverty.

The new society cannot work if the paradigm it is based upon remains a mere intellectual knowledge instead of becoming a fact of (everyday) life.
Why?
“My argument is”, says Mark Boyle, “that under the vision that Peter [Joseph] and Jacque have, people will be so far disconnected from the things they consume to have (or maintain) any respect for them now or continuously. I also believe they will have no understanding as to why we need to change so drastically to begin with.”

The lack of understanding within the front rows of TZM has shown blatantly since late 2009. In fact, the request for a practice-what-you-preach approach has been regarded as a threat to the integrity of a movement that is, in contrast to its vision, busy with aggressively self-protecting its hierarchical chain of command and telling their members to proceed with supporting the monetary system til doomsday.

“The low-tech but completely organic society I am proposing, whilst not as attractive to the addicted masses, I believe is actually possible and not just a fantasy that looks great and will appeal to people who want to continue with their fantasies and addictions. – Walden versus TVP, I guess, as a solution”, states Boyle, author of “The Moneyless Man”. And I agree, because I see the need to first reconnect people to the foundations of their lives before enabling them to toy around with nanotech and other stuff from which we would really benefit… provided we became wise enough to avoid self-destruct.

Given a real shift in how we look at the world, a low-tech resource-based approach will offer at least as much contentment in life as Fresco’s technical wonderland. The change we need, no matter if we go for huts or skyscrapers, is a progress in our social abilities which are horribly retarded compared to our scientific achievements. It can only result from inner observation and understanding the processes of the mind. Such an understanding will manifest, without effort, in behaviours much more sane. And no matter what type of society structure we erect then (likely some sort of RBE anyway), it is going to be a highly desirable one.

The one-straw revolution

Do-nothing farming, also known as natural farming, Fukuoka farming, and The Fukuoka method, is an alternative permaculture farming method to chemical or traditional farming. It reduces human intervention to an absolute minimum, allowing nature to do the work. As odd as it may seem, do-nothing farming is able to produce at least as much food per acre as any other method, without tilling, nursing, pruning, planting in tidy rows, or using machinery, fertilizers, compost and pesticides.

The One-Straw Revolution

The method became widely known through the book The One-Straw Revolution, originally published in 1975, by Masanobu Fukuoka (1913-2008), a Japanese microbiologist who tested spiritual insights on his father’s farm.

He began his career as a soil scientist specializing in plant pathology. In 1938, he began to doubt the wisdom of modern agricultural science. He eventually quit his job as a research scientist, and returned to his family’s farm on the island of Shikoku in Southern Japan to grow organic fruits, vegetables and grain. From that point on he devoted his life to developing a unique small scale organic farming system that does not require weeding, pesticides, fertilizers, or tilling.

The One Straw Revolution has been translated into many languages and usually sold for the net cost price. Fukuoka shared his knowledge with everyone interested and allowed people to volunteer on his farm for days, months or even years.

Idea

Origins

Going through a crisis at the age of 25, Fukuoka had a revelation: “In this world there is nothing at all.” There was no reason to worry about life because he suddenly realized that “all the concepts to which he had been clinging were empty fabrications. All his agonies disappeared like dreams and illusions, a something one might call ‘true nature’ stood revealed.”[1]

This insight, and the observation of a rice plant growing wildly on an uncultivated piece of land lead him to the notion of do-nothing. But having ruined his father’s tangerine garden that way, his first important lesson in natural farming was that one can’t change agricultural techniques abruptly. Trees that have been cultivated cannot adapt to neglect. Newly-planted untouched plants can, he found out. They seem to somehow remember their natural offspring which required no cultivation whatsoever. Human intervention weakens plants, so they get addicted to pruning, fertilizing, plowing, additional watering and pesticides.

During the following years, Masanobu Fukuoka developed, by observing nature and trial, simple methods for a natural way of doing agriculture.

A Way of Life

Fukuoka insisted that natural farming was not just a method but a way of life based on simplicity and oneness with the Earth. Ideally, all people would become farmers. He predicted that a large-scale change in consciousness would lead to the fall of governments and whole economies, for a human being, independent of external food supply, would be no more prey to manipulation, power games and consumerism. He wanted man to reexamine his relationship with nature in its entirety. That would be a revolution triggered by straw. But it requires that people shift to seasonal, regional and vegetarian diet rather than consume exotic and/or protein-rich food.

Fukuoka saw an opportunity that people could live in harmony with each other and with nature: “Natural farming is not simply a way of growing crops; it is the cultivation and perfection of human beings”[2], he said. “Most people do not yet understand the distinction between organic gardening and natural farming. Both scientific agriculture and organic farming are basically scientific in their approach. The boundary between the two is not clear.”[3]

While nature is the real expert in growing stuff, Fukuoka says, man’s intellect has distorted this wisdom. Modern science, along with industry and government, is leading man ever further away from the community of life. We seem to be “so steeped in science that a method of farming which discards science altogether will not be digested.”[4]

Method

Despite the catching phrase “do-nothing” there still is some work to do, of course. But it points out that many agricultural practices, which generally are regarded as essential and indispensable, can be left out, which results in a significant reduction of effort, money and time to be invested.

The method, originally developed for Japanese conditions, got successfully adapted to other places around the world. In India, for example, natural farming is often referred to as Rishi Kheshi.

Green Manure only

Fukuoka mixed seeds of white clover with rice or winter grain. A ground cover of white clover will grow under the grain plants to provide nitrogen and keep weed plants from overpowering the crop. Weeds are also considered part of the ecosystem, periodically cut and allowed to rot on the surface so the nutrients they contain are returned to the soil.

Ducks are let into the grain plot, to eat slugs and other pests. They leave just a little bit of manure.

No prepared compost or chemical fertilizer must be applied.

Seed Balls

In order to protect seeds from being eaten by birds, they have to be dampened a bit, then wrapped in a layer of clay powder, compost, and sometimes manure. The seeds necessary for 1/4 acre can be prepared within a few hours. The result is a denser crop of smaller but highly productive and stronger plants.

Little or no Tillage

The seeds get brought out on the surface of the untilled earth to grow. Tillage is usually unnecessary if the ground is not too hard. Plowing severely disturbs insects and worms which keep the earth fertile.

Mulching

The ground has to stay covered all the time. The clover does that during the growing season.

Shortly after the harvest, the complete straw is scattered loosely (not straight!) in thick layers as mulch. The straw decomposts until the next harvest time, giving back all the taken-out nutrients from the previous crop.

Fukuoka used short-stemmed grains which had a spike to halm weight ratio of 1:1

Crop Rotation

By observation of natural processes, Fukuoka learned about the optimal moment for seeding, and also which plants best complement with each other. He only intervened when necessary.

Regarding grain, he brought out rice and winter grain in rotation. Each grain crop is sown two weeks before the previous one is harvested. This is done by broadcasting the seed among the standing crop(!) During the harvest, the new shoots get trampled down, of course, but they recover quickly and begin to sprout.

This sort of double crop rotation can be done over and over on the exact same spot, without ever depleting the soil. Mulching by clover and straw even enriched its fertility over the years.

Minimal Irrigation

Fukuoka seeded rice directly on the spot where it finally got harvested, without transplanting from a nursery field and without the use of paddy fields. With very little irrigation and just one week of water standing in the field, the do-nothing method saves enormeous amounts of water and labour (i.e. transplanting, min. four times of weeding a year, flooding) and thereby avoids overly methane production.

Natural Pests Regulation

Instead of trying to root out pests, natural farming lets nature have its way. The insect population in and above the ground is much higher than in plowed and sprayed fields. Predators like mice, birds and spiders are allowed to roam. The species control each other and keep balanced. Plagues appear rarely and never mean the loss of whole crops.

No Pruning

Trees and bushes never get pruned. Branches and twigs arrange themselves so they each get the optimum of sunlight. An already pruned tree has to be withdrawn carefully over at least two years before it adapts to do-nothing farming. A wide range of grass species on the ground and mixing various tree species keeps the orchard healthy.

Scattering and Mixing

Vegetables can be grown wherever there is a small unused piece of land, preferrably among fruit trees to enrich the soil. Varieties should be brought out mixed with each other on the already existing vegetation cover.

Results

Fukuoka’s labor resulted in an equal or higher amount in crops than traditional and chemical farming in the same area, while the fertility of the soil constantly increased over the years and natural balance was kept. This balance self-regulated pests so there have been little to no losses in crops. With an average of about one hour of work per day, Fukuoka was able to get as much grain from a quarter acre of land as needed to feed a family of five. Costs reduced to almost zero, as no fertilizer, pesticides, seeds, heavy machines or food had to be bought to run the farm.

Literature

* Masanobu Fukuoka: The One Straw Revolution – The Natural Way of Farming.
* Masanobu Fukuoka: The Road Back to Nature
* Masanobu Fukuoka: The Natural Way of Farming – The Theory and Practice of Green Philosophy

References

1. ↑ http://www.onestrawrevolution.net/MasanobuFukuoka.htm
2. ↑ http://www.onestrawrevolution.net
3. ↑ Masanobu Fukuoka: The Road Back to Nature p.363
4. ↑ http://www.rmaf.org.ph/Awardees/Biography/BiographyFukuokaMas.htm

Zeitzeuge

Heute vor 40 Jahren fanden in den USA die letzten groß angelegten Friedensmärsche gegen den Vietnamkrieg statt, das sogenannte Moratorium. Dabei kam es u.a. vor dem Weißen Haus zu einer Massendemonstration, die beinahe ein weltweites Desaster ausgelöst hätte. Durch Courage in den Reihen der Sicherheitskräfte konnte dies verhindert werden. Neulich hatte ich das Vergnügen, einen Zeitzeugen kennenzulernen und veröffentliche dessen Erinnerungen mit seiner ausdrücklicher Genehmigung, auch der zur Nennung aller Namen.

I was a Sp4 in the 1/17th Airborne Cavalry of the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, NC in 1969… I was in the Army from 1967 to 1970.
During the weekend of the Moratorium, the 82nd Airborne Division was put on alert to go to Washington, DC, to ‘police’ the protest. Leaves and passes were canceled and the Division was ‘briefed’. We were told that the Moratorium was a cover for a violent government takeover by communists that was to be suppressed by any means necessary. We were told we were to go to the Moratorium with loaded weapons and if we felt it necessary to open fire, we would not be held responsible.

To the soldiers, after years of lies about the Viet Nam War, this meant a bloodbath against the protesters was the intended result of the action. At first, one soldier refused to accept a weapon, then more, and after a few hours, it was apparent that the soldiers, many of them Viet Nam Veterans, would not go and obey orders.

Personally, I refused the order at the door to the armory room and was told to go up to my platoon bay and wait. I did so, expecting to be alone in the bay and ultimately be either jailed for life or be killed for refusing orders. At the time, I had decided I would die for my country, if necessary, so I would as easily die when refusing an illegal order. As I sat there, more and more soldiers came up, without weapons, and we sat and played cards, not talking about it, all of us afraid but apparently resolute. I had decided I would rather go to prison than obey an order I consider against the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, which I had taken a vow to uphold. I was ordered to go down to see the Captain, and upon entering the office, I was confronted by a room lined with angry NCOs [Unteroffiziere] and Officers, with my Commanding Officer sitting at a desk.

He asked me if I had refused to take a weapon. I responded by reciting the Constitution that says that people have the right to assemble for regress of grievances, word for word, surprisingly doing it from memory, an astounding act I didn’t know I could do. My CO then told me I had to obey orders and THEN protest those orders. I responded by saying that ultimately it was every individuals responsibility to decide what they will do, regardless of other people’s orders, that I would not go to Washington and kill Americans exercising their rights regardless of orders.

We argued awhile, my demeanor exactly as expected by a soldier talking to his commanding officer, but making clear to him that my decision, regardless of what is done to me as a result, was not going to change under any intimidation. Finally he ordered me up to my bay, saying as I left that he was sorry that the Viet Nam war was not a ‘declared war’ so he could take me out and shoot me. At that point, I was willing to die for the People of the USA if it was decided to kill me, even if carried out by my own Army. I also decided I would be a pacifist from then on, a decision I have upheld since that day. War, regardless of reason, is obviously social insanity committed by an insane institution.

More soldiers were called down and returned. I have no idea what was said to them, because nobody talked about it. There was no ‘conspiracy’, no ‘subversion’, no agenda… it was completely spontaneous and unplanned, before, during, and after. I expected the news to carry the story, but apparently nobody spoke to the press about it. I am not, nor have ever been, a believer or member of any communist or any other ‘ism’. I consider them all equally stupid.

After hours of waiting, play cards and not talking about anything but cards, our NCO came up all smiles and we were given our leaves and passes back, and it was as if the incident never happened. Years later, I heard that the USSR had warned Nixon that if he dropped a nuke on Hanoi, the USSR would consider it a ‘first strike’ and retaliate massively. The Generals told Nixon it was a bluff, so Nixon ordered a nuclear bomb dropped anyway. Apparently the 82nd had to then tell Nixon that the soldiers would not come to Washington, where he was planning to announce the strike from the Oval office, -to be seen as ‘Presidential’-. Knowing that such an announcement might well cause the protesters to come through the fence of the White House like a Tsunami, Nixon recalled the B-52 and the bomb was not dropped. Under the Freedom of Information Act, I heard that the USSR considered the incident as important to them as the Cuban Missile Crisis was to Kennedy and was planning to retaliate just as they had warned. I believe that the world exists now because of the soldiers of the 82nd refusing, en mass, an illegal order by the President of the United States.

– (William Alan Fangohr aka Roan Carratu aka Worldmind,
mit der Nummer RA16961035 im Juni 1967 in die Armee aufgenommen und ehrenvoll entlassen im Juni 1970)