Thursday, November 15 , 2018, 1:38 pm | Fair 76º

 
 
 
 

90-Plus for Peace: Joe Pollock

The philanthropist is speaking out in support of pulling U.S. troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Editor’s Note: This is one in a series of stories by Steven Crandell to introduce readers to extraordinary Santa Barbara peace leaders. All of them are older than age 90. Although their lives are very different, one thing binds all of them: They take individual satisfaction from contributing to the greater good.

Dr. Joe Pollock is starting a peace movement at age 94. His message is straightforward: “Get our military forces out of Iraq and Afghanistan now.”

image
Joe Pollock

The enormity of the task isn’t daunting to him. He shrugs and says, “I never give up.”

Pollock was born in 1913, the same year the 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified — authorizing the federal government to impose and collect income tax. It also was the year Woodrow Wilson became president, stainless steel was invented in England and Mohandas Gandhi was arrested while leading a march of India miners in South Africa.

In the near-century since then, Pollock has been a surgeon, an author, a steel factory owner, a horse rancher and a philanthropist. Since coming to Santa Barbara 22 years ago, he has played pivotal roles with the Santa Barbara Film Festival, the Channel Island Marine Sanctuary Foundation, Santa Barbara City College and the Center for Film, Television and New Media at UCSB. Pollock, wife Helene and other family members gave $2 million in 2004 to build the 299-seat Pollock Theatre at UCSB.

Right now, he has an even bigger agenda. Read all about it on his blog at www.academia12.blogspot.com.

“I have lived through wars and recessions. I have witnessed many disasters our country has suffered,” he writes. “Now, I must speak out about our present catastrophic situation concerning our part in the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“I feel that the U.S. is fighting a useless war. It’s time for the U.S. and President Bush to admit we have lost the war. In the Vietnam War, we finally admitted our failure. We walked away. ... Now, in Iraq and Afghanistan, the fear is that Iran will take over the Middle East. ... So what? We continue, and will continue, to lose our kids. The cost of the war is a terrific drain on our economy. Our dollar is at an all-time low. ... We must get out of Iraq and Afghanistan now.”

He expresses frustration about the major presidential candidates. He says they will “follow Mr. Bush’s program” and keep troops in Iraq if elected, so Pollock is calling for people across the country to demand the withdrawal of U.S. troops without delay.

“What’s the war about?” he says. “Being successful? War is like anything else. Sometimes you have to admit that you’ve lost. And walk away.”

Steven Crandell is the director of development and public affairs for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >