make moussaka, not war: zucchinis for peace

Stolen heartlessly from Waiterforum:

Afghanistan Needs Food, Not Bombs:
Send Zucchinis to War Minister Gordon O’Connor Today!

Please forward far and wide

Afghanistan Needs Food, not Bombs: Send a Zucchini today to Canada’s War Minister
(no postage required–details below, including sample letter and address)

This message includes:



4. FEED THE AFGHAN PEOPLE, STOP SQUASHING THEIR HOPES FOR PEACE (includes address of War Minister Gordon O’Connor and sample letter)


Lotsa zucchini here!

This week, in a much under-reported story, the European-based Senlis Council released a report that stated children are starving in Afghanistan.

Foreign military expenditures in that country outpace development and reconstruction spending by 900% (much as the Canadian military budget outpaces the housing budget by over 900%!)

Indeed, $82.5 billion (U.S. funds) have been spent on military operations in Afghanistan since 2002 compared with just $7.3 billion on development.

The report states that “five years after the 2001 US-led invasion, a humanitarian crisis of starvation and poverty has gripped the south of the country and the US- and UK-led failed counter-narcotics and military policies are responsible…makeshift, unregistered refugee camps of starving children, civilians displaced by counter-narcotics eradication and bombing campaigns can be found on the doorstep of new US and UK multi-million dollar military camps.” (see full Senlis press release below)

The United Nations World Food Programme has been forced to cancel plans to provide more than 2.5 million Afghans with urgent food aid. Unless these needs are met, this will have dire consequences for millions of Afghans.


We are most often told that the main reason the Canadian military is in Afghanistan is to help the Afghan people. Many Afghan people are starving. It is time to send massive amounts of food aid, not massive amounts of bullets and bombs.

The Power of A Symbol

Politicians are often unable to grasp the meaning of words, more than a vegetable, a symbol!and require symbols to help them out. We have seen in the past few years stunning examples of Homes not Bombs campaigns that have succeeded in employing the noble zucchini in the cause of peace. We have argued that successive war ministers’ confused sexual desires to launch phallic-shaped missiles would be more safely directed if phallic-shaped zucchinis were sent instead.

Surely it can be no coincidence that:

1. Homes not Bombs repeatedly presented Peace Zucchinis to then War Minister Art Eggleton in an effort to get Canada out of star wars; his government rejected overt participation in the Bush space warfare scheme.

2. Homes not Bombs presented Peace Zucchinis to then War Minister John McCallum in late January, 2003, with the demand that Canada not join the war against Iraq. His government did not formally join that invasion, and McCallum enjoyed a good stir-fry.

3. Homes not Bombs spearheaded the campaign to send empty pens to then “Public Safety” Minister Anne McLellan, the idea being her desk would fill up with so many ink-less pens that when CSIS came knocking for her to sign a secret trial security certificate, she wouldn’t be able to find a pen that actually worked. Needless to say, McLellan never signed a security certificate!

4. Homes not Bombs precursor Banana Republics United, a 1980s open conspiracy, played a major role in a campaign to send bananas to then-U.S. Ambassador Paul Robinson, who treated Canada much like said banana republic. Needless to say, he eventually split.

There is clearly a pattern here that cannot be ignored.

Perhaps the most famous example of a culinary symbol in the cause of peace is described by David Albert in People Power: Applying Non-violence Theory:

“In the mid 1950s, the pacifist Fellowship of Reconciliation, learning of famine in the Chinese mainland, launched a “Feed Thine Enemy” campaign.

Members and friends mailed thousands of little bags of rice to the White House with a tag quoting the Bible, “If thine enemy hunger, feed him.” As far as anyone knew for more than ten years, the campaign was an abject failure. The President did not acknowledge receipt of the bags publicly; certainly no rice was ever sent to China.

“What non-violent activists only learned a decade later was that the campaign played a significant, perhaps even determining role in preventing nuclear war. Twice while the campaign was on, President Eisenhower met with the Joint Chiefs of Staff to consider US options in the conflict with China over two islands, Quemoy and Matsu. The generals twice recommended the use of nuclear weapons. President Eisenhower each time turned to his aide and asked how many little bags of rice had come in. When told they numbered in the tens of thousands, Eisenhower told the generals that as long as so many Americans were expressing active interest in having the US feed the Chinese, he certainly wasn’t going to consider using nuclear weapons against them.

So now it is time to make sure War Minister Gordon O’Connor gets the picture. Postage free, you can mail a zucchini and a note urging that O’Connor feed, not bomb, the people of Afghanistan (sample letter follows). Can you imagine the War Minister’s office deluged with zucchinis? He can’t help but charter a plane and start loading them personally!)

We would like to keep a running tally, so please email when you have lovingly wrapped your zucchini in an envelope and sent it postage-free to the following address:

Gordon O’Connor, MP, War Minister
157 East Block
House of Commons
Ottawa ON K1A 0A6

Dear Mr. O’Connor,

Please forward the enclosed zucchini to the people of Afghanistan with the next plane headed that way. It would be far better to send this phallic symbol than the phallic symbols – missiles and mortar rounds – that you are currently sending.

As you must be aware, there is a humanitarian crisis, especially in the southern region of Afghanistan, where thousands of Canadian troops are deployed. That crisis is one of extreme poverty and hunger, and cannot be alleviated with guns, aerial bombardment, house raids, arbitrary detention, and mistreatment of detainees.

The respected Senlis Council recently noted that 900% more has been spent on the military build-up than on development in Afghanistan.

The United Nations World Food Programme has been forced to cancel plans to provide more than 2.5 million Afghans with urgent food aid. Unless these needs are met, this will have dire consequences for millions of Afghans.

I urge you to bring Canada’s troops home and to seek dialogue and peaceful solutions to the crisis in Afghanistan. The billions you are spending to fight there would be far better spent on peaceful conflict resolution and meeting the pressing social needs of the Afghan people.

You often refer to those you are fighting as your enemy. While “enemy thinking” is an unacceptable world view that inevitably leads to violence, I remind you of the Biblical reference in Romans 12:20, “If thine enemy hunger, feed him.”

The Afghan people are not our enemy. But they are hungry. It’s time for food, not bombs.


10 thoughts on “make moussaka, not war: zucchinis for peace

  1. ‘I urge you to bring Canada’s troops home and to seek dialogue and peaceful solutions to the crisis in Afghanistan.’

    Make peace with the Taleban, you nutter! They want to introduce Sharia law and train terrorists to kill us! If you pull your troops out you will leave us up shit creek too!

    We need to keep killing the taleban fighters until they are sho shot up they disband and can’t recruit anyone!

  2. Wow, what a fantastic idea. You know, moussaka is really good. I can make it like no other. But where is my modesty?

    I’m sorta afraid to send zucchini to the White House…it’ll probably just end up in the kitchen downstairs.

  3. They’d probably be redefined as bio-bombs and you’d be sent to Gitmo. They have zero sense of humour there since Clinton left. HE would make moussaka.

    Steven, why aren’t you in Afghanistan?

  4. Then STFU when you say “go fight them”. I know you’re only doing it to get a rise out of people, but knowing that you’re talking through your ass doesn’t make it any more musical.

  5. Please delete the image “stemma zucchini” from his blog. The image is not of free use.
    Thank you.

  6. Which image is that? I’ll be happy to, but I don’t know which one you’re referring to: the photograph or the illustration.

    Hold on: it’s the coat of arms. Coats of arms that date back that far are out of copyright. I don’t understand.

  7. Pingback: Don’t Wait for the Government to Help | Emergency Survival Food Reserves

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