[Marxism] Sept. 15-21: A Potential Turning Point in the War

JacDon jacdon at earthlink.net
Sun Aug 5 12:07:34 MDT 2007

>From the Hudson Valley Activist Newsletter Aug. 5, 2007
The big peace-or-war showdown is set for Washington on Saturday, Sept. 15,
and the American antiwar movement will be there in force.
This is the day Gen. David Petraeus, the U.S. commander in Iraq who
represents the Bush Administration¹s great hope for military ³victory² in
Iraq, will deliver his eagerly anticipated report on the status of the war.
Petraeus is expected to plead for more time to obtain the objective of
President George W. Bush¹s unjust, illegal invasion and occupation ‹ the
long-term domination of Iraq, control of its oil resources and exploitation
of the country's geostrategic location to threaten Iran and Syria.
Simultaneously, tens of thousands of antiwar demonstrators ‹ representing
the majority of the American people ‹ will be marching from the White House
to the Capitol for a rally, demanding, ³Time¹s up! Withdraw now!²  Many will
also be chanting for the impeachment of Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.
Upon reaching the Capitol, a sector of the marchers led by Iraq Veterans
Against the War (IVAW) will offer civil disobedience in a dramatic ³die-in²
to express the depth of their opposition to the war.  The die-in will take
place adjacent to the rally, for which a permit has been obtained on the
West Lawn of the Capitol Building, but separate enough so that only those
participating in the action will be exposed to possible arrest. (Full
details about Sept. 15 may be found at http://www.Sept15.org  and
Coinciding as it does not only with the Petraeus report but with the
ever-growing strength of antiwar sentiment while Congress continues to
dither and equivocate, the Sept. 15-21 actions may be among the most
important of the Iraq War. [Hudson Valley activists will be traveling to the
nation¹s capital and back Sept. 15 on buses chartered by the Hudson Valley
Activist Newsletter. For reservations, jacdon at earthlink.net.]
A number of major organizations  have united to work closely in organizing
the week-long series of peace actions in Washington starting Sept. 15.
Various groups will be responsible for particular actions on each day.
The ³Days of Action² week emerged from a July 18 meeting Washington meeting
initiated by the ANSWER Coalition, which will serve as the principal
organizer of the opening march and rally. The other groups attending
included IVAW, Veterans for Peace (VFP), Muslim American Society Freedom
Foundation, National Council of Arab Americans, CODEPINK (Women for Peace),
Grassroots America, Democracy Rising, ImpeachBush.org, and the National
Lawyers Guild. All agreed to bring their respective constituencies together
for the week of activities.
Other groups signed on since then, including U.S. Labor Against the War,
Campus Anti-War Network, World Can't Wait, Democracy Rising, Appeal for
Redress, Latino Movement USA, Hip Hop Caucus, Common Ground Collective of
New Orleans, Gold Star Families for Peace, Ministers for Racial, Social and
Economic Justice, International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia
Abu-Jamal, and the list is still in formation.
A number of prominent individual activists have also given their support
(and some will speak at the rally as well), including Ramsey Clark, Cindy
Sheehan, Howard Zinn, Cynthia McKinney, Fr. Roy Bourgeois, Kevin Zeese, Rev.
Graylan Hagler, Ron Kovic, and Pam Africa, among others.
Here is a sketch of the actions planned after the Sept. 15 march, rally and
civil disobedience:
Sunday, Sept. 16 ‹ National Training Session for the other Days of Action.
Monday, Sept. 17 ‹ Two events:
1. Peoples March Inside Congress, led by CODEPINK, demanding ³No more
excuses! Lead us out of Iraq Now.² People will assemble at 9 a.m. in the
cafeteria of the Rayburn House Office Building. Information,
http://www.codepink4peace.org/index.php. [We don¹t yet know exactly what¹s
planned but a march INSIDE Congress should engage considerable attention.]
2. National Truth in Recruiting Day. Iraq Veterans Against the War, joined
by other groups, will send teams to various recruitment centers  in
Washington ³to tell the truth and counter the lies of the recruiters.² Teams
will dispatch from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Union Station. Information,
Tuesday, Sept. 18 ‹ Congressional Challenge Day. Grassroots America will be
the lead organizer of a spectrum of people from around the country who will
fill the halls and offices of Congress to tell the politicians to stop
funding the war right now. Information, http://grassrootsamerica4us.org/.
Wednesday, Sept. 19 ‹ Direct Action. More details soon.
Thursday, Sept. 20 ‹ Veterans lobbying day. Iraq Veterans Against the War is
the lead organization.
Friday, Sept. 21 ‹ National Moratorium Day.  Actions will take place around
the country, including Washington DC. Information,
Following the Days of Action, the Troops Out Now Coalition is organizing a
Sept 22- 29 ³Encampment directly in front of Congress to demand Congress
stop funding the war.²  On the final day, Sept. 29, there will be a ³Stop
the War Now!² march on Washington. Information,
The week of Oct. 20-27 has been designated a time for local and regional
demonstrations against the war by several peace groups operating
independently, including United For Peace and Justice, ANSWER and others.
The Sept. 15-21 events initiated by ANSWER are not to be confused with this
coalition¹s call May 31 for all the antiwar coalitions and organizations to
come together to mobilize the largest single mass march on Washington DC
under the demand to ³End the War Now!²
³The aim is not just one more demonstration,² ANSWER said, ³but the largest
antiwar demonstration in U.S. history.² The thinking was, and remains, that
if the entire movement agreed to work together in a united action on one
specific day, a million and more people would come into the streets and
demand an end to the war.
So what happened? ANSWER addressed this question the other day:
³Most antiwar activists support this idea. At the national level some
organizations support the call for building a united mass mobilization.
Others are opposing it. The ANSWER Coalition will continue to promote and
organize for a united action where organizations and coalitions can come
together and organize a march of a million people to show the breadth and
support of the antiwar sentiment in this country. March 2008 will mark the
start of the sixth year of the Iraq war. If the antiwar organizations desire
to unite, it would be an important moment to organize a huge show of force
demanding an immediate end to the war. In unity there is great strength‹it
is that simple.²

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