The longest war: Afghanistan beyond the Taliban

Two veteran journalists who have covered Afghanistan talk about the war that has surpassed Vietnam as the longest in US history. Masood Farivar, a former fighter in the Afghan anti-Soviet resistance before becoming a newswire in New York, then returning to Afghanistan in his capacity as journalist, and Tim McGirk a former Time magazine bureau chief in the region who has reported from Afghanistan since 1990, will have a conversation hosted by Jason Motlagh, a freelance journalist/filmmaker and former Time magazine correspondent in Kabul. A short documentary, Million Dollar Militia , will also be screened. What does a continued US presence—or, potentially, troops preparing to leave—mean for the country’s future? What political environment exists there?  Oakland-based production company Blackbeard Films launches a series that will highlight reporting on underreported stories with this event. 

7 p.m., free

Arbor Café

4210 Telegraph, Oakl. 



Wilderness first aid for the streets

In the saga of Occupy Oakland clashes with police, perhaps none are more unsung than the medics. These volunteers do everything from flushing eyes of tear gas to being first responders to protesters with broken limbs and gushing wounds. The medics team up for a training to others who want to do what they do. “Developed for wilderness situations, this course is adapted for urban uprisings, and will include care for chemical weapons exposure, herbal first aid, and public health considerations for long-term occupations,” according to the Occupy Oakland medics committee. This course is serious, covering two full days- March 24 and 25, 10am to 8pm. Red Cross certification and Continuing Education Units credits are available for $20, and scholarships are available.

10 a.m., donation suggested

The Holdout

2313 San Pablo, Oakl. 


St. Patricks Day Ceili

Did you make it through that special day without participating in a ceili, a traditional Irish social dance that is a hallmark of St. Patricks Day? If so, you’re in luck -- you will be given a second chance. This dance is easily accessible for newbies and much more fun than cheap plastic green stuff and day-drinking. 

7 p.m., $10 (free for children)

United Irish Cultural Center 

2700 45th Ave., SF  



Speaking youth to power

When it comes to climate change, young people know what’s up. Specifically such acclaimed young people as project coordinator for the urban farming non-profit Urban Tilth and Green For All Fellow Tania Pulido, Adarsha Shivakumar, founder of Project Jathropa, and Abigail Boroh, the student best known for interrupting the Durban, South Africa Climate Conference in December to bring urgency to the less than promising conference proceedings. Join them for a discussion on civic engagement within the climate justice movement. 

Doors 5:30, program 6pm, $20 (free for members and students)

Commonwealth Club

595 Market, SF


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