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Blood on the Tracks: The Life and Times of S. Brian Willson [NOOK Book]

Overview

After serving in the Vietnam War, S. Brian Willson became a radical, nonviolent peace protester and pacifist, and this memoir details the drastic governmental and social change he has spent his life fighting for. Chronicling his personal struggle with a government he believes to be unjust, Willson sheds light on the various incarnations of his protests of the U.S. government, including the refusal to pay taxes, public fasting, and, most famously, public obstruction. On September 1, 1987, Willson was run over by a...

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Blood on the Tracks: The Life and Times of S. Brian Willson

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Overview

After serving in the Vietnam War, S. Brian Willson became a radical, nonviolent peace protester and pacifist, and this memoir details the drastic governmental and social change he has spent his life fighting for. Chronicling his personal struggle with a government he believes to be unjust, Willson sheds light on the various incarnations of his protests of the U.S. government, including the refusal to pay taxes, public fasting, and, most famously, public obstruction. On September 1, 1987, Willson was run over by a U.S. government munitions train during a nonviolent blocking action in which he expected to be removed from the tracks. Providing a full look into the tragic event, Willson, who lost his legs in the incident, discusses how the subsequent publicity propelled his cause toward the national consciousness. Now, 23 years later, Willson tells his story of social injustice, nonviolent struggle, and the so-called American way of life.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This whopping epic (published by Oakland's feisty PM Press) tells the story of a Vietnam-era soldier who entered the war as a red-blooded small-town recruit and emerged as a die-hard dissident, driven to expose and oppose not only warfare in general but also the US' unique role in spreading military terror around the world." —Berkeley Daily Planet (July 12, 2011)

"Blood On the Tracks is the story of one man's attempt to change the direction of that machine (America) or, failing in that, preventing it from working at all." —www.counterpunch.org (July 18, 2011)

"[Willson's] 440-page book traces his journey from high school baseball star in Ashville, N.Y., to Air Force captain in Vietnam to antiwar figure - and on to today, when he says his most important message is that 'we have to all live more simply, because our lifestyle in America is totally unsustainable.'" —San Francisco Chronicle (July 18, 2011)

"One lesson (from the book) is the importance of  'finding your own tracks and taking a stand there.' . . . Brian did so by taking this action 'in person:' using the most powerful symbol at his disposal, his vulnerable, resilient, determined, and spirited body." —www.WagingNonviolence.org (September 2011)

"Blood on the Tracks reveals a thoughtful, reflective man who does not shy away from facing difficult truths about what we have made of our world." —Peace News, UK (November 25, 2011)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781604865929
  • Publisher: PM Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 500
  • Sales rank: 1,295,718
  • File size: 17 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

S. Brian Willson is a Vietnam veteran and nonviolent pacifist. He lives in Portland, Oregon. Daniel Ellsberg is a former U.S. military analyst who released the Pentagon Papers to the New York Times and other newspapers. He lives in San Francisco.

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Table of Contents

Special Author's Acknowledgment xii

Authors Conventions xvi

Introduction Daniel Ellsberg xvii

Foreword xxi

Part I All-American

1 July 4,1941 3

2 At Bat 12

3 Seeking a Calling 18

4 Enlisted 26

5 Us and Them 36

Part II Pax Americana

6 In Country: Viet Nam 55

7 Letters Home 62

8 Conduct Unbecoming 70

9 Sent Home 76

Part III The Criminal Injustice System

10 No, Justice 91

11 A Caged Society 102

12 Back to the Land 110

13 Flashback 124

Part IV The United States in America

14 Without Leave 135

15 Becoming a Vet 144

16 Dignity Trumps Longevity 153

17 Fasting for Life 166

18 In Country: Nicaragua 183

Part V She Is Me

19 Blood on the Tracks 205

20 "Here Comes the Train" 213

21 What Really Happened 218

22 S. Brian Willson, "Terrorist" 233

Part VI Third World Legs

23 Becoming a Hero 253

24 Fighting Empire in El Salvador 258

25 Coca-Cola Colombia 270

26 Assimilation or Elimination 283

Part VII Steady State

27 Cuba—A Special Case 305

28 Horizontalism 316

29 Arrowheads 333

30 Zapatistas! An Archetype 345

31 Conclusion 359

Notes 374

Recommended Reading List 411

Acknowledgments 419

Index 421

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