[Marxism] Why isn't UFPJ supporting the March on the Pentagon?

Jon Flanders jonflanders at jflan.net
Sun Feb 18 21:15:34 MST 2007

Given the lateness of the date, any notion of a single united
demonstration in Washington on March 17  is a pipe dream.

In the Albany area, plans are already underway for a March 18
demonstration followed by local vigils on the 19th. I don't expect many
people will go either to NYC or Washington.

Perhaps this is a good thing, if it wakes up the two sides for the need
for unity and a better way to make decisions than heretofore. Right now
local coalitions have zero input in what should happen next, they are
left to try to figure out what makes sense to relate to and what

Unlike the Vietnam period, we have no SMC pushing for mass
decision-making conferences, something that neither Answer or UFPJ would
want on their own. I suspect we will need a real crisis to jar the rank
and file of the anti-war movement into seeing  the need of democratic
decision making.

In the meantime, maybe someone could come up with a resolution to be
adopted by local anti-war groups demanding  this. To at least get the
discussion started. As usual,change will only come from below.

Jon Flanders

On Sun, 2007-02-18 at 11:24 -0500, Louis Proyect wrote:
> Dear Leslie Cagan,
> This just appeared on the Marxism list I moderate 
> that has just under 1000 subscribers, as well as 
> perhaps 3 times as many unsubscribed readers of 
> our archives. I am very much opposed to UFPJ 
> calling an action on the day after ANSWER's in 
> Washington. It will be seen by everybody, 
> including me, as an attempt to undercut the 
> ANSWER action. I regard this as nothing less than 
> a boneheaded, disgusting sectarian move that 
> smacks of the small proprietor mentality of 
> cockroach capitalists rather than people trying 
> to change the world for the better.
> As anybody will tell you, I have been far more 
> critical of ANSWER on this forum than UFPJ. I 
> have in fact urged members of the Workers World 
> Party and the recent split-off to work in UFPJ 
> rather than maintain a separate coalition. 
> Although I am opposed to the way in which UFPJ 
> tail-ends the Democratic Party, it is fairly 
> obvious that it has broader appeal.
> I am not sure whose "brilliant" idea it was to 
> pull this maneuver but it is not too late to pull 
> back. Many people like myself have no particular 
> commitment to a party or to a faction in the 
> peace or radical movements, but we surely know how to smell a rat.
> Thanks for your consideration,
> Louis Proyect
> >From: "Larry Holmes"
> >
> >Please sign on to this letter, and circulate it widely. Below or only
> >initial signers: Thanks.
> >
> >
> >Dear sisters and brothers in the leadership of United for Peace and Justice,
> >
> >It is with deep concern, sincerity and hope that we the undersigned
> >appeal to you to cancel the protest that you have only recently
> >announced for March 18 in New York City, well after plans had been
> >announced for a D.C. mobilization, thus setting up misconceptions and
> >promoting confusion.
> >
> >We urge you to support and work for a united mobilization in
> >Washington and use the power of your outreach to endorse and support
> >the march on the Pentagon on March 17 to mark the fourth anniversary
> >of the war.
> >
> >Surely you must know that the activists in the antiwar movement view
> >your late announcement of a March 18 event as little more than a
> >deliberate attempt to undermine the long scheduled mobilization to
> >Washington and the Pentagon on Saturday, March 17; the talk already
> >going around is: "Why isn't UFPJ supporting the March on the Pentagon?
> >People do not see it as uniting.
> >
> >The hard working rank and file activists of the antiwar movement, as
> >well as the millions of people who have come out to antiwar
> >demonstrations don't care which coalition calls the march, or what the
> >political differences are between the various coalitions, or about the
> >history of problems that the coalitions have had working together;what
> >they want is for us to march together, especially now.
> >
> >Indeed, hardworking anti-war activists have attended all rallies
> >called by UFPJ as well as the other coalitions; therefore,
> >demonstrating a consistent expression of unity.We should then expect
> >nothing less from those who have taken leadership responsibility
> >within the US anti-war movement.
> >
> >The broad array of forces that comprise the resistance to the Iraq
> >war, and new looming wars ie Iran expect the people in decision making
> >positions to take the high road, focus the peoples' energy on common,
> >united actions and pave the road together to strengthen our unity for
> >peace with justice.
> >
> >Would it not be an enormous step forward, indeed a step towards
> >revitalizing the antiwar movement, if all
> >concerned abandoned the cynical infighting and
> >divisiveness that only serves to make the movement more fragmented,
> >and weak? UFPJ can make that possible, by calling on its supporters to
> >short of that spreads more negativity than positive unity. Dear
> >friends, please take this appeal to heart and help unite us all on
> >March 17, 2007.
> >
> >Sincerely,
> >
> >Abayomi Azikiwe, Editor, Pan-African News Wire, Michigan Emergency
> >Committee Against War & Injustice
> >
> >
> >Brenda Stokely, Co-Convener New York Labor Against The War, Operation
> >Power, TONC, MWMM, MAY 1 Coalition
> >
> >Comrade Shahid, Pakistan USA Freedom Forum
> >
> >Charles Barron , New York City Councilmember
> >
> >Chris Silvera, Secretary Treasurer, IBT Local 808, Million Worker
> >March Movement (MWMM), National Black Teamsters Caucus
> >
> >Ellie Ommani, member, WESPAC, AIFC, NoWarWestchester, PNN
> >
> >Eric Anders, Jersey City Peace Movement
> >
> >Heather Cottin, LI Coalition for Immigrant Rights"
> >
> >Jesse Lokahi Heiwa, Queer People Of Color Action
> >
> >Larry Adams, Co-Convener New York Labor Against The War (NYCLAW)
> >
> >Michael Letwin, Co-Convener, New York City Labor Against the War &
> >Former Member, UFPJ National and NYC steering committees
> >
> >Saladin Muhammad, Member Black Workers For Justice
> >
> >Teresa Gutierrez, New York Committee to Free the Cuban
> >Five
> >
> >Troops Out Now Coalition
> >
> >Vicente Alba ­Panama, Activist
> >
> >________________________________________________
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