Eco-Publishing: Indie Presses Saving the Planet, One Book at a Time

PUBLISHERS FOR PEACE COALITION - Group seeks to publish and distribute 50,000 copies of Iraq photo essay.
A letter to publishers and interested parties from Chelsea Greenís Margo Baldwin:

Dear Fellow Independent Publisher,

As a spontaneous effort to stop our country's mad rush to war, I'm inviting you to raise your independent publishing voice and join our newly created PUBLISHERS FOR PEACE COALITION. Our first job is to cooperatively publish and distribute a minimum of 50,000 copies of IRAQ ON THE EDGE, a brand new photo-essay by American photojournalist Thorne Anderson. We're hoping to make this powerful antiwar pamphlet available in every bookstore in the US for free distribution to the American people within the next few weeks.

Thorne Anderson is an independent photojournalist currently working in Iraq. His work emphasizes the impact of conflict on civilian populations. For the past seven years he has been based in the Balkans covering conflicts and culture in Yugoslavia, Bosnia, Macedonia, Albania and Bulgaria. His work has also taken him to Tunisia, Tajikistan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Israel and the Palestinian Territories. As an assignment photographer, Anderson's photographs have been published in a wide range of international book, newspaper and magazine publications including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Toronto Globe and Mail, The Guardian (London), and Time, Newsweek, and Stern magazines among others.

Thorne has produced IRAQ ON THE EDGE with Voices in the Wilderness(www.vitw.org), a US/UK nonprofit group working to end the economic sanctions against the people of Iraq. Voices coordinates the Iraq Peace Team (www.iraqpeaceteam.org), a constant presence of volunteers in Iraq working in solidarity with the people of Iraq and with the millions of people around the world who are now speaking out against the use of war, deprivation, starvation, and disease for political or material gain.

Preliminary estimates indicate that we can print this 4-color booklet for less than $.50/copy, and maybe much less if we can identify the right printer. We're intending to add another 4 pages of text on the inside front and back covers to describe our Publishers for Peace Coalition and to let people know how they can support Voices in the Wilderness and the Iraq Peace Team.

Are you willing to pay for the printing of 1000 copies? 2,000? 5,000? Chelsea Green is committed to organizing the coalition effort and to paying for at least 2,000 copies. As a publisher of books on the environment and sustainable living, we feel very strongly that we must act now to stop such an impending environmental and social catastrophe. If twenty of us feel similarly, we could easily print 50,000 to 100,000 copies and maybe more, which would then be distributed centrally by one publisher or distributor to bookstores nationwide.

Let me know how you can help. We need to create a media campaign that will publicize our effort. We also need to find the most efficient and effective ways to distribute IRAQ ON THE EDGE to all bookstores and book outlets with as little direct cost as possible.

Please pass along to your own network of independent publishing colleagues and ask them to join us. Together we can raise our independent publishing voice to WAGE PEACE, not war! My contact information is below.

Thank you!

Margo

Margo Baldwin, Publisher
Chelsea Green Publishing Company
205 Gates-Briggs Building, P.O. Box 428
White River Junction, VT 05001
802-295-6300 ext.102 (fax) 802.295.6444
mbaldwin@chelseagreen.com
www.chelseagreen.com

If you want to download the IRAQ ON THE EDGE pdf, you can now go to the Voices web site at: www.nonviolence.org/vitw/pages/lib_multimedia.html

Thanks and keep up the effort! A letter from Thorne Anderson:

Dear Margo and others,

I'm very impressed with the momentum the Iraq on the Edge booklet project is picking up. I wanted to let you all know that this has been a big boost to the morale of many people -- to me, the Iraq Peace Team and others -- who are working inside Iraq to continue to find ways to reach people in the United States with a broader picture of Iraq than they can typically find in mainstream media. Thank you Margo, especially for your spark in this synergy.

This has been a difficult week here in Iraq.İ Most of us here see very plainly that the Feb 15 global day of protest was by no means a grand finale in the effort to halt this war. The pace of war preparations has rapidly accelerated. Plans for invasion, occupation and post-war administration of Iraq are now leaked all over the place. An Iranian militia, Turkish soldiers, and U.S. Special Forces are already deploying in northern Iraq. Iraqi forces are moving to more defensive locations. Civil militias (filled with reluctant and poorly trained men and boys who quite plainly would take a devastating blow from an invasion) have been mobilized for marches and emergency training all throughout the country. The U.S. troop buildup in Kuwait and on ships in the Gulf has now reached near maximum deployment level. A few families with the resources are leaving Baghdad and other cities for Jordan or Syria or wherever they can go.

The U.S. has achieved agreement from Turkey for deployment of around 40,000 troops for the northern front (this agreement at a reported cost of $10 billion(!) in outright grants and $20 billion in loan guarantees and a deal to allow Turkey to participate in the invasion of northern Iraq and the control of Kurdish interests there). The UN has pulled out half of its remaining staff from Iraq in the past two weeks in preparation for a possible complete evacuation.İ Bush and Blair have each conducted damage-control publicity campaigns diminishing the import of the Feb. 15 protests and have floated draft copies of a war resolution in the UN.İ And there is rapid-fire talk on both sides of the Atlantic of foregoing UN approval and launching the attack without any debate in the Security Council if the US and Britain suspect that they won't be able to get a majority or cannot avoid a veto from France or Russia.

It appears that those leading the war effort are taking advantage of post-Feb. 15 complacency to accelerate war activities.İ I am hoping that Feb 15 will not be remembered as the finale of the anti-war movement, but rather as the beginning.İ The Iraq Peace Team is moving down to a tent in the DMZ on the border with Kuwait this week.İ From there you can actually see the U.S. tanks moving in the Kuwaiti desert and the dust kicked up by the camps of the 90,000 American troops on the other side. The IPT will sit for four days in the path of what would be a U.S. invasion through the south and hold a water-only fast in hopes of reminding the world that the danger of war is as great or greater than ever and to urge the anti-war movement in the states not to rest but to similarly accelerate actions for peace.

Perhaps you can see how a morale booster like the one you are providing is sorely needed and much appreciated.

With respect and thanks,
İİİİİİİİİİİİİ Thorne Anderson


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