SOURCE: Center of Cultures

June 19, 2008 08:10 ET

Center of Cultures Announces a Worldwide One-Day Hunger Strike to Protest Installation of U.S. "Star Wars" Radar Base

Hunger for Peace: June 22nd

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - June 19, 2008) - The Center of Cultures, a non-profit organization focusing on advancing the values of New Humanism, announces that on June 22nd, thousands worldwide will join a one-day hunger strike to protest the proposed installation of a U.S. "Star Wars" radar base in the Czech Republic. Despite public polls showing 70% of the Czech citizens are against the base, the Government is ignoring the will of the majority and moving ahead with the plan. Noam Chomsky has warned that "The installation of a missile defense system in Eastern Europe is, virtually, a declaration of war."

In North America, events will be held on June 22nd in solidarity with the Czech people opposing the base. In New York, an "Empty Plate Picnic" is being organized at Bryant Park. According to Chris Wells, spokesperson for New Humanism, "We propose that everyone who opposes this absurd and immoral escalation of 'Star Wars' join us in a simple but meaningful act: not to eat for one day. We need to stop feeding the war machine, and start feeding people." The event is co-sponsored by The Center of Cultures, the Humanist Movement, the Campaign for Peace and Democracy, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, CodePink NYC, Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space, and Fellowship of Reconciliation. For information: www.humanism.org.

The worldwide fast grew out of the hunger strike that two Czech Humanists, Jan Tamas and Jan Bednar, began on May 13th after Tamas realized "We tried almost everything, but our government has failed to listen." Their actions drew the attention of media, politicians and personalities and inspired others to follow suit. They ended the strike after 21 days when others kept it alive in a "chain hunger strike" which is continuing in various countries.

Opposition to the U.S. base is mounting and the press is finally beginning to take notice. Noam Chomsky, Christopher Hedges, Dennis Kucinich and other notables have lent their support. The European Parliament has invited Tamas to address a special session on July 9th in Strasbourg.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is scheduled to sign the radar base treaty between the U.S. and the Czech Republic in Prague on July 10. Czech opponents of the base are collecting online signatures (www.nonviolence.cz) to build pressure in advance of Rice's trip.

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