The End of Combat Operations in Iraq? How a “Peace President” Packages the Continuation of an Occupation to Make Us Feel Better About ItAugust 31, 2010
Forty seven percent of the voters believe the Federal budget deficit is primarily due to the wars while joblessness continues to climb. The number one concern for a majority of people is the economy. It is the perfect storm for new organizing efforts to end the wars, cut military spending and rebuild our communities.
Peace Action is helping to organize a national march on Washington, October 2,One Nation Working Together. We are calling on the Obama administration and Congress to create jobs and “move the money” from wars and weapons to our communities.
Peace Action met with peace leaders from around the world to create International Days of Action to End the War in Afghanistan, October 7-10. This will be an opportunity for local activities to mobilize growing opposition to the costs, human and economic, of the war. Using local newspaper ads, teach-ins, vigils, Congressional visits or phone- ins to call for a ceasefire, negotiations and a withdrawal of all troops will help focus the growing opposition on both the administration as well as candidates in the midterm elections. Check with your local peace groups or stay tuned for information on organizing your own action.
Paul Kawika Martin
Organizing and Policy Director
P.S. Please join us here in Washington, DC on Saturday, October 2, for an historic march and plan to participate in an event in your local area during the International Days of Action to End the War in Afghanistan, October 7-10.
Along with our colleagues Code Pink, the Institute for Policy Studies and other stalwart peace and justice groups, Peace Action is sponsoring a teach-in on Iraq this Sunday, August 29. Here is the “411″ as they say, and a good article from Code Pink’s Medea Benjamin on Op-Ed News:
Iraq: The Legacy of the 7-Year U.S. Occupation
When: Sunday, August 29th 2010
Busboys and Poets
5th and K NW, Washington, DC
Is the U.S. military really leaving Iraq or just rebranding? What is the toll of seven years of occupation on Iraqis, U.S. soldiers and our economies? What is the status of Iraqi refugees around the world? Is it still possible to hold accountable those who dragged us into the war or committed crimes such as torture? What role did Congress and the media play in facilitating the invasion/occupation? We’ll also look at the role of the peace movement–its strengths and weaknesses–and draw key lessons to make our work for peace, including in Afghanistan, more effective.
Kymone Tecumseh Freeman, playwright, performer, reading Letters from Iraq
Phyllis Bennis, Institute for Policy Studies
Raed Jarrar, Peace Action
BIll Fletcher, labor leader, scholar
Josh Stieber, Iraq Veterans Against the War
Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK and Global Exchange
Andy Shallal, Iraqi artist, owner Busboys and Poets
David Swanson, author
Cynthia Benjamin, Military Families Speak Out
Sponsored by: CODEPINK, Peace Action, Institute for Policy Studies, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Global Exchange, Just Foreign Policy, Veterans for Peace, Iraq Veterans Against the War, Military Families Speak Out, ANSWER, World Can’t Wait, Voices for Creative Nonviolence and War is a Crime.
My interview today with RT.
Larry Wittner, long-time activist, professor and author, has a terrific op-ed on History News Network on the gigantic U.S. military budget. Check it out and feel free to re-post and forward.
Sonali Kolhatkar, the host of Uprising, interviewed Paul from Hiroshima last Friday. The show runs on over a dozen stations including: KPFA, KPFT, KRFP, WVJW, WXOJ-LP, FRSC, and The Journey Radio.