(fwd from David McDonald) Re: ANSWER and today's anti-war movement

Les Schaffer schaffer at optonline.net
Tue Jan 21 14:14:45 MST 2003

[ quoted text snipped ]

I have agreed pretty much with Fred's tone throughout the past three months.
I encouraged him to attend the NION national mtg in NYC in the wake of Oct 6
and have been  in correspondence with him since.

I say to all former members of the SWP, you're not gonna get a call from the
party on this one, so get out there and jump in.

I believe we are in an unprecedented situation of the creation of an actual
mass movement against the War in Iraq. Everywhere there are demonstrations
(I have been to Portland's and Seattle's and have spoken personally to
people who were in San Francisco and Washington, D.C.) people show up in
often unprecedented numbers. The mayor of Seattle was booed when he
suggested to the MLK Day rally that the war was inevitable.

Anyone who thinks their or their group's organizational skill, cunning,
devotion, whatever is stoppinng the war is really missing the point: the
people have had it, this is not just blowing smoke and stealing money, this
is unleashing hellfire on an entire nation and millions of Americans are
prepared to march to show the mass of their opposition to this barbaric
stupidity about to be perpetrated (the NION people do have a point) in our
names. Any sectarianism of any sort is triple criminal now, including all
whining from whatever source.

I am appending below, in the body of this message some email traffic
indicating how i am attempting to conduct this little battle in Seattle

Cheers, Walter and others.

[Note: NION and the Church Council of Seattle, an important grouping, have
already called for February 15th]

I believe we should step back from immediate decisions about important
aspects of the demonstration; basically I believe we should put everything
but the date on the table and ask the Emergency Response Coalition to jump
in and activate their apparatus NOW to build February 15th as the day
Seattle masses to show its opposition ot war.

We should say to them: when we convened the ERC no one thought this war
could be stopped before it started. But people all over the country have
already demonstrated unprecedented opposition to the war (300,000 in
Washington, D.C., at least 100,000 in San Francisco, 20,000 in Portland, all
on Saturday, and 10,000 in Seattle's largest ever Martin Luther King Day
March) and the movement continues to grow as the U.S. government becomes
more isolated.

It is no longer out of the question that the people of the world, in their
messy way, including the people of the United States, can stop this war. The
Emergency Response Coalition is Seattle's big gun. It must activate itself
today, with a proper discussion, whatever that means to them, and take the
leadership of February 15th. We should urge them forward, call them on the
phone if we know their numbers, and campaign for them to take this righteous
decision, which could lead to the largest demonstration in the history of
Seattle and give most importantly the righteous people of Seattle the
greatest opportunity to express their opposition to war with Iraq.

David McDonald

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