The Debate in the Woods

“The Debate in the Woods” was between Jack Gescheidt of The Tree Spirit Project vs Bob Strayer of the Claremont Canyon Conservancy. The monitor was Bill Lazarus.

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East Bay Area Woods and Nature Preservation Activists gathered in Claremont Canyon Preserve on July 24, 2016 to hear Jack Gescheidt of The Tree Spirit Project (center) versus Bob Strayer of the Claremont Canyon Conservancy (right).

The debate was friendly and respectful. It covered numerous issues related to the plan created by UC Berkeley, City of Oakland, and the East Bay Regional Parks, and the Federal Emergency Management Authority (FEMA) to cut several hundred thousand trees, to spray herbicide to prevent re-growth, and to create grasslands instead of re-planting other trees. The Hills Conservation Network, a coalition of a number of civic groups, has filed a law suit to stop the plan. This debate was a reflection of two persons with different philosophies and understandings about the impact of the plan on the living creatures and plants, as well as the soil and the watershed of the San Francisco Bay Area.

 Click on the photo below to watch the video of “The Debate in the Woods”.The-Debate-in-the-Woods_Title-Page-Vic-Sadot-screenshot

The TreeSpirit Project is an environmental art project devoted to raising awareness of the crucial role trees and forests in our lives, both globally and also personally. The global and the personal are inextricably linked. TreeSpirit’s centerpiece is the world’s largest collection of photographs of naked, vulnerable humans communing with trees, created by Founder and photographer Jack Gescheidt with hundreds of volunteer participants.  All are tree and nature lovers who want to attract public and media attention to how much we need forests to mitigate climate change — and to touch our souls. Click on the photo below to watch a short video titled “The Forest and the Sea of Stumps”, an excellent review of the alarming plans to cut over 400,000 trees in the Bay Area Hills (7:44) Published on June 3, 2016 at Magmalavas YouTube Channel. A Film by Doug Prose; Music by Machinimasound & Joe Hartnett. Now in “The Politics of Trees & The Preservation of Natural Areas” playlist at SOCIAL JUSTICE IN THE HEART OF BERKELEY YouTube Channel.

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Bob Strayer, Board Member of the Claremont Canyon Conservancy. The Claremont Canyon Conservancy provides stewardship and educational programs to its members and the public regarding the 500-acre, mostly wild land, Claremont Canyon at the Oakland/Berkeley border in Northern California. Address: Claremont Ave, Berkeley, CA 94705; Phone: (888) 327-2757.

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Photo by Vic Sadot taken on May 17, 2016 while hiking up a Claremont Canyon trail.

Hills Conservation Network

Stop the Deforestation of the Berkeley/Oakland Hills! UC and the City of Oakland plan to use federal disaster mitigation funds to clear-cut ALL of its tall trees in the hills. They are targeting eucalyptus, pines, and acacia for complete eradication, not because of a fire risk, but instead to clear the land for facilities expansion and to continue to allow UC to avoid spending its own money to maintain its wild land properties. They have dismissed proposed “species neutral” fire mitigation strategies that would be cheaper, would use far fewer herbicides, and would be far more effective in lessening fire risk because such strategies wouldn’t accomplish this hidden agenda. inquiries@hillsconservationnetwork.org

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Click on the photo to read Dan Grassetti’s article on the cutting of these trees by UC Berkeley before the release of the environmental impact study in August 2014. The Hills Conservation Network has filed a lawsuit to stop the clear-cutting of trees under the notion that they are an “invasive species” and need to be eliminated by a chemical war on them. Dan Grassetti is the founder of the Hills Conservation Network.

Claremont Canyon Regional Preserve sign

The Hills Conservation Network (HCN) filed suit to prevent the funding and implementation of these projects on March 6, 2015.  Below is the press release announcing HCN’s suit.  Please contact the Hills Conservation Network if you wish to contribute to the cost of this suit:    http://www.hillsconservationnetwork.org/HillsConservation3/Blog/Blog.html

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Ordinary, extraordinary people, all volunteers, from all walks of life,  bare themselves to boldly, playfully, feel connected again: to trees, to others, to themselves. In this case, the people gathered to defend a stand of Eucalyptus trees on the UC Berkeley campus. Click on the photo above to watch a video in which Jack Gescheidt explains the philosophy and strategy of the artistic activism of The Tree Spirit Project, a celebration of our interdependence with nature.

 

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NO NUKE BLUES FUKUSHIMA UPDATE Video Released by Vic Sadot

Vic Sadot released a new music video on April 8, 2015 titled NO NUKE BLUES FUKUSHIMA UPDATE. Since posting at “Truth Troubadour” and “Vic Sadot Broadside Balladeer” YouTube Channels, it has been posted to Vimeo, and to two French language video sharing sites with lyric and info in French. The song itself is in English. The two sites where Vic posts in French are Daily Motion and Tag Tele. The video is set to free download full non-profit use with credits and no edits under a Creative Commons Copyright. It was posted to two Russian sites already! They must remember Chernobyl.

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The original “No Nuke Blues” was written in 1979 about the Three Mile Island accident on the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania. The song was updated with a verse about the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 in the former Soviet Union. Unfortunately, a new verse needed to be written in 2011 about the ongoing Fukushima nuclear catastrophe in Japan. This version has Vic Sadot on vocals, acoustic guitar, and piano accordion. Eric Golub plays a very lively violin. This recording was done in Robot Envy Studio in Berkeley, CA by Sammy Fielding as sound engineer.

Chizu Hamada of the No Nukes Action Committee speaking at PG&E Headquarters in San Francisco after marching from an earlier speak-out at the entrance to the Japanese Consulate.

Chizu Hamada of the No Nukes Action Committee speaking at PG&E Headquarters in San Francisco after marching from an earlier speak-out at the entrance to the Japanese Consulate.

NO NUKE BLUES FUKUSHIMA UPDATE (4:43) Vic Sadot at Truth Troubadour YouTube Channel.

 

Nuclear terror comes to the pristine Susquehanna River valley. But how many people realized the danger at the time?

Nuclear terror comes to the pristine Susquehanna River valley in Pennsylvania,

a major tributary of the wonderful Chesapeake Bay Watershed Area.

But how many people realized the danger at the time?

Here are the lyrics! Please feel welcome to share this message! 

私たちは英語を話すし、歌詞と曲の無料のスタジオ録音であるGのキーで簡単なチューニングするために歌われることができシンコペーションで日本人に歌なしハァハァブルースを変換するためにギターを果たしている日本のミュージシャンを探していますこのサウンドクラウドリンクで

No Nuke Blues – Fukushima Update

They’re talkin’ ’bout a meltdown up the river from my home (Three Mile Island,1979)

The Susquehanna’s beautiful! But it might be time to roam!

Evacuate the area for miles around, or stay?

I wonder what this crazy world is comin’ to today!

Chorus: Sing along! It’s call and response!

No Nuke Blues! (Repeat it: “No Nuke Blues!”)

No Nuke News! (Repeat it: “No Nuke News!”) 2X

It’s time to choose! Refuse to lose!

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The situation’s “stable” now… That’s what the “experts” say…

They say a meltdown’s “possible”, but it’s “safe enough to stay”…

Well, this kind of “stability” ain’t safe enough for me!

I’m gonna pack up all I can, and move my family

chorus – instrumental verse – chorus

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Chenobyl-Ukraine-Masked-Workers

They’re talkin’ ’bout a meltdown in the USSR! (Chernobyl,1986)

The way that radiation spreads… That really ain’t so far!

Chernobly’s an example of berserk technology!

Let’s go for solar power now and safer energy!  (chorus)

Helicopter-surveys_Fukushima_March2011_NoNukeBluesFukushimaUpdate_text_4-08-15_Vic-Sadot_music-video-screenshotfukushima-nuclear-reactor1-accident600x374

Chieko Shiina was a traditional farmer in the Fukushima area who became a well-known activist and speaker against nuclear power in Japan. Here she is speaking in San Luis Obispo, California in solidarity with groups calling for the shut down of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant. Diablo is built in a similar situation to Fukushima in that it is over an earthquake fault on the Pacific shoreline.

Chieko Shiina was a traditional farmer in the Fukushima area who became a well-known activist and speaker against nuclear power in Japan. Here she is speaking in San Luis Obispo, California in solidarity with groups calling for the shut down of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant. Diablo is built in a similar situation to Fukushima in that it is over an earthquake fault on the Pacific shoreline. Video screenshot by Vic Sadot.

They say earthquakes and tidal waves messed up the best of plans! (Fukushima, 2011)

There are deadly radiation leaks from Fukushima in Japan!

Contamination’s spreading through the land, the air, and sea!

It’s time to put an end to this insane nuke industry! (chorus)

fukushima-nuclear-tragedy-radiation-scans

They say contamination levels “might not” be so bad…

The way they play with people’s lives just makes me boilin’ mad!

There shall be a “reaction” and the chain of links will grow

People must have power, but those nukes have got to go!  (chorus 2X)

Song Copyright 1979 (1986 & 2011 Updates) Vic Sadot, BMI, Orbian Love Music

The Video is set as a Creative Commons Copyright with free download and full use with credits and no edits.

Screenshot from the video features two signs during a demonstration. One for "No Nukes Action Committee" and one for Northern California 9/11 Truth Alliance that says "9/11 Truth Ends War".

Screenshot from the video features two signs during a demonstration. One for “No Nukes Action Committee” and one for Northern California 9/11 Truth Alliance that says “9/11 Truth Ends War”.

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No Nukes Action Committee on Facebook

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“SHUTDOWN – Why Diablo Canyon Must Be Next” (3:47) EON3 YouTube Channel (Ecological Options Network) 5-03-14. Video #1 in the “Anti-Nuke, Coal, Petroleum Energy – Pro Solar, Safe, & Sustainable Energy” Playlist in the SOCIAL JUSTICE IN THE HEART OF BERKELEY YouTube Channel. “EON prepares fundraising for new documentary on Diablo Canyon since San Ofre was closed and the Fukushima disaster is ongoing. In this preview clip from the forthcoming EON documentary SHUTDOWN – The California-Fukushima Connection (ShutdownDoc.tv), Linda Seeley, Spokesperson for Mothers for Peace, and David Lochbaum, Director of the Nuclear Safety Project at the Union of Concerned Scientists, and Co-Author of FUKUSHIMA – The Story of a Nuclear Disaster, explain why Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant near San Luis Obispo is California’s Fukushima-waiting-to-happen.”

FREE MP3! Get it at SoundCloud! Use it! NO NUKE BLUES – Fukushima Update Version by Berkeley Broadside Balladeer Vic Sadot.  http://soundcloud.com/broadsideballadeer/no-nuke-blues-2012-fukushima

This is an earlier blog report at vicsadot dot com on the 4th Anniversary of Fukushima event that inspired the video!

Vic Sadot Leads Fukushima 4th Anniversary “No Nuke Blues” Sing Out At Japanese SF Consulate. We’re hoping to get a Japanese translation of this song that is singable! We need a Japanese musician to take that on! See the lyrics posted at “Broadside Balladeer” at SoundCloud. Blog at VicSadot.com here. In the featured photo you have left to right Cynthia Papermaster, Vic Sadot Singer-Songwriter and Chizu Hamada of the No Nukes Action Committee For current topical songs by other songwriters showcased by Vic see Truth Troubadour Showcase http://vicsadot.com/2015/03/17/vic-sadot-leads-fukushima-4th-anniversary-no-nuke-blues-sing-out-at-japanese-sf-consulate

No Nuke Blues Fukushima Update at YouTube. Info Update at Last FM by BroadsideBallad

http://www.last.fm/user/broadsideballad/journal/2015/04/09/6i7ztm_no_nuke_blues_fukushima_update_(4:43)_truth_troubadour_youtube

Recommended Groups and Links for Education and Activism

Against Nuclear Power and For Safe and Renewable Energy

No Nukes Action Committee – We are concerned individuals and groups against the world wide nuclear renaissance. We started organizing after May 7th 2011, and formed No Nukes Action Committee  to keep our voices out in solidarity with the struggles around nuclear issues.

私たちは世界的な原子力ルネッサンスに反対の意思を表明する様々な個人と団体の集まりです。2011年5月7日にサンフランシスコで組織された反原発・反核抗議行動から引き継いで、No Nukes Action Action Committeeという名前のもとに、原子力に反対する声をあげていくことにしました。

www.nonukesaction.wordpress.com

Friends of the Earth – Shutting Down Diablo Canyon: Concerns over the proposed construction of nuclear reactors at Diablo Canyon were an impetus for David Brower to found Friends of Earth in 1969. Since then, more information about the seismic activity near the two aging reactors has made it increasingly clear that Diablo Canyon should never have been built on its current site. The tremendous and unnecessary risk these reactors pose to public health and the environment necessitates that they be shut down.

http://www.foe.org/projects/climate-and-energy/nuclear-reactors

San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace (805) 773-3881: San Luis Obispo Mothers for Peace is a non-profit organization concerned with the local dangers involving the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant, and with the dangers of nuclear power, weapons and waste on national and global levels. Additionally, Mothers for Peace works to promote peace and a nuclear-free, carbon-free world, utilizing conservation and sustainable resources.

http://mothersforpeace.org

Nuclear Free California Network – Committed to shutting down Diablo Canyon reactors – Sunset for nuclear power in California.

http://nonukesca.net

Fukushima Bay Area Response – Fukushima Response Bay Area is part of a global effort to bring public awareness to the planet-threatening crisis still unfolding at Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and to press for a real solution.

www.fukushimaresponsebayarea.org

EON Ecological Options Network: “Nuclear Free Planet Campaign” – The threat to democracy and bio-survival posed by nuclear weapons and power technologies, two sides of one deadly coin, has been a prime focus of our work since 1982. EON has a powerful and effective media education on the internet, including Facebook and YouTube, as well as their home site. Their videos are quality productions!

http://www.eon3.net/nukefree_planet/nuclear_free_planet.html

Nuke Free News for the Green Revolution – We work to stop the construction of new atomic reactors, and to close those now in operation. We seek a truly green-powered Earth, run entirely on renewables and efficiency. Editor Harvey Wasserman.

http://www.nukefree.org

MUSE (Musicians United for Safe Energy) – For three decades, MUSE has influenced individuals, businesses and governments to avoid a nuclear nightmare with development of clean, safe power.

www.musiciansunited4safeenergy.org

Fukushima Poetry – Words Fly Away Compiled by Holly Harwood

www.fukushimapoetry.wordpress.com

Veteran activist Harvey Wasserman on transitioning to Solartopia

www.Solartopia.org

Sayanara Nukes – Goodbye Nukes in Japan

さようなら原発1000万人アクション | 脱原発で持続可能・平和な

http://sayonara-nukes.org

Japanese National Re-running Blocking Network 再稼働阻止全国ネットワーク

http://saikadososhinet.sakura.ne.jp

Fukushima Action Network in Japan

http://fukushimaaction.com

SOLAR TIMES by Sandy Leon Vest – SolarTimes is an independent energy publication that looks at energy from a progressive, humanitarian perspective. SolarTimes’ editorial mission is – but is not limited to – the raising of public awareness and the education and empowerment of citizens regarding energy, as a human rights issue.

http://www.solartimes.org

Stop PG&E’s Seismic Testing at Diablo Canyon by The Great Whale Conservancy – PG&E (Pacific Gas and Electric) of California has applied for a permit to conduct seismic testing of the sea floor just offshore of the Diablo Canyon and San Onofre nuclear power facilities. They propose to drag an array of 20 air canons that would emit 250-decibel blasts every 20 seconds for 42 consecutive days. Although no one can predict with any certainty the damage that will be done, PG&E’s proposal anticipates the likely deaths of hundreds of marine mammals, including many Great Whales. Blues, humpbacks, fin whales, and grey whales are all expected to be in the area, as well as numerous species of dolphins, porpoises, seals and sea lions. The violent concussions from the air canons will blow out the ear drums of any marine mammals close by, and the painful injuries and death that will follow will be horrific. There will also be significant impacts on fish stocks, and the local fishing fleet and tourism industries that depend on the presence of the fish and marine mammals are up in arms. http://www.greatwhaleconservancy.org/stop-pges-seismic-testing-diablo-canyon

Québec – California Solidarity Shines in Richmond

Group photo outside the Bobby Bowens Progressive Center in Richmond after the gathering organized by the Sunflower Alliance. "Stopping Fossil Fuel Disaster! - Starting Fossil Free Solutions!" From Lac-Mégantic, Québec to Richmond, California! SATURDAY, March 1, 2o14 at Bobby Bowens  Progressive Center, 1021 Macdonald Ave, Richmond CA

Group photo outside the Bobby Bowens Progressive Center in Richmond after the gathering organized by the Sunflower Alliance. “Stopping Fossil Fuel Disaster! – Starting Fossil Free Solutions!” From Lac-Mégantic, Québec to Richmond, California! SATURDAY, March 1, 2o14 at Bobby Bowens Progressive Center, 1021 Macdonald Ave, Richmond CA. Photo by Brooke Anderson. Hit the photo to see her Facebook page: “Stills of Our Stories & Struggles”

A devastating and tragic oil train derailment, explosions, and intense raging fires came crashing into the little town of Lac-Mégantic, Québec, Canada on the night of July 6, 2013. In the aftermath, citizens from the town began to find their collective voice and to organize themselves. One of them spoke in Richmond to a large crowd at the Barry Bowers Center in Richmond, CA on March 1, 2014.

A train rolling throught lovely downtown Lac-Megantic sometime before the oil train derailment, explosions and fires of July 6, 2013. Photo Montreal CTV News

A train rolling throught lovely downtown Lac-Megantic sometime before the oil train derailment, explosions and fires of July 6, 2013. Photo Montreal CTV News

Marilaine Savard told the story and showed photos from her home town tragedy. An unattended 74-car freight train transporting the most volatile of crude oil was parked at night on a steep incline a few miles from town. Somehow the train’s brakes failed and it ran away and picked up speed until it derailed as it took a curve in the center of the quaint little town located in the Eastern Townships of the Canadian province of Quebec. It’s very close to the border of Maine and next to a beautiful lake also named Lac-Mégantic. The train derailed, resulting in such intense fires and explosions of multiple tank cars that it killed 47 people who were “vaporized”. More than 30 buildings in the town’s center were destroyed turning the quaint Québec town into an inferno and into a wasteland. See the photo from before above and the photo after below.

The Sainte-Agnès Catholic Church stands unscathed next to the derailment and blast site in Lac-Megantic, Quebec on Tuesday, July 9, 2013. Pope Francis on Tuesday extended an apostolic blessing to victims, families and everyone affected by the tragedy. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jacques Boissinot)

The Sainte-Agnès Catholic Church stands unscathed next to the derailment and blast site in Lac-Megantic, Quebec on Tuesday, July 9, 2013. Pope Francis on Tuesday extended an apostolic blessing to victims, families and everyone affected by the tragedy. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jacques Boissinot)

Such was the story told by a young mother named Marilaine Savard from Lac-Mégantic, who fate cast as the spokesperson for the people of the town’s effort to respond to Big Oil and it’s conduct of criminal neglect and irresponsibility. Marilaine Savard was emotionally distraught at times. Yet she was stalwart and inspired by the outpouring of good will and “Solidarity” that she received from her new-found friends in the Chevron Oil Refinery town of Richmond, California. If any California town can feel for Lac-Mégantic it would be Richmond, which has suffered the effects of the huge oil refinery in its midst. 

Marilaine Savard, Baraka, and Pennie Opal Plant relax after the inspiring gathering in Richmond. Photo by Vic Sadot

Marilaine Savard, Baraka, and Pennie Opal Plant relax after the inspiring gathering in Richmond. Photo by Vic Sadot

Marilaine Savard, spokesperson for the Citizens Committee of Lac-Mégantic, Québec, was in the San Francisco Bay area for about a week of local speaking and organizing for alternatives to the fossil-fuel industry as well as to tell the story of her community. Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin gave a fiery speech and read a formal Solidarity Proclamation from the City of Oakland to the city of Lac-Mégantic. 

Richmond, CA Mayor Gail  McLaughlin and City Council member Vice Mayor Jovanka Beckles read and present the Proclamation of Solidarity to Marilaine Savard on behalf of their respective communities. Photo by Vic Sadot

Richmond, CA Mayor Gail McLaughlin and City Council member Vice Mayor Jovanka Beckles read and present the Proclamation of Solidarity to Marilaine Savard on behalf of their respective communities. Photo by Vic Sadot

Mayor McLaughlin is part of the Richmond Progressive Alliance which has transformed Richmond from an oil “company town” to a leading city standing up to Wall St bank foreclosures and Chevron corruption and pollution. Her second term as mayor is currently dealing with the aftermath of the damages for the August 6, 2013 Chevron refinery explosion and fire that resulted in 15,000 going to the hospital.

Photo by David Charron in Maclean's Canadian National Weekly

Photo by David Charron in Maclean’s Canadian National Weekly

Also speaking: Antonia Juhasz, leading oil industry expert, policy-analyst, award winning journalist, and author of three books: including ‘The Tyranny of Oil: The World’s Most Powerful Industry and What We Must do to Stop It.’  George Monterrey, a grassroots community leader of the Pittsburg Ethics Council, which is fighting the Wespac crude mega-transfer-storage facility in Pittsburg, CA to supply expanding Bay Area refineries with fracked and tar sands crude oil by rail, pipeline and tanker. Pennie Opal Plant, Idle No More SF Bay Solidarity, from Richmond, CA “Idle No More calls on all people to join in a peaceful revolution, to honor Indigenous sovereignty, and to protect the land and water”. The MC was Andres Soto, KPFA’s Morning Mix host, writer at Richmond Confidetial, and Communities for a Better Environment Richmond organizer. David Solnit of Arts for Change talked about how some discussions months ago led to these connections with newly activated people in Québec.

The Canadian Press/Paul Chiasson & Montreal CTV News Lac-Mégantic Oil Train Fires & Explosions Disaster 07-06-13

The Canadian Press/Paul Chiasson & Montreal CTV News Lac-Mégantic Oil Train Fires & Explosions Disaster 07-06-13

Publicity for the event stated that “Fossil Fuels are a disaster, from fracking and tar sands extraction to transport in rail cars, pipelines and tankers; to refining; to burning; to climate change-caused drought, heatwaves, fires, floods, and super-storms that are wrecking our communities and planet”. The panel addressed questions related to this theme: “How can we move from “Not In My Back Yard” (NIMBY) to “Not On Planet Earth” (NOPE)? How can we STOP fossil fuel disasters and START fossil-fuel free solutions?”

LacMegantic wide angle photo Montreal CTV News Oil Train Fires & Explosions Disaster 07-06-13

Lac-Mégantic wide angle photo Montreal CTV News Oil Train Fires & Explosions Disaster 07-06-13

Sponsored by Sunflower Alliance. Cosponsored by Richmond Progressive Alliance, Bay Area 350.org, and Communities for a Better Environment.

The Facebook event page was titled “Stopping Fossil Fuel Disaster–Starting Fossil Free Solutions” From Lac-Mégantic to Pittsburg to Richmond, CA. How do we create connectedness and solidartity and an end to the attitude of “Not In My Back Yard” (NIMBY) to a wiser and more engaging attitude of “Not On Planet Earth” (NOPE). A lively teach-in it was! 

A gathering earlier in the week when the Solidarity Banner was unfurled. People signed their names and short statements on the banner to be taken back to Québec. I wrote "Bon Courage!"

A gathering earlier in the week when the Solidarity Banner was unfurled. People signed their names and short statements on the banner to be taken back to Québec. I wrote “Bon Courage!