Skip to comments.Anti-War Activists Map Their Strategy (FR mention)
Posted on 03/09/2003 4:31:17 AM PST by anniegetyourgun
They have marched and chanted, hoping to use persuasion to prevent war. If that fails, though, activists are readying a more aggressive strategy of sit-ins and social disruptions, meant to restore peace in Iraq.
Protest sit-ins, especially at federal buildings, defense recruiting offices and military bases, have been mapped out for dozens of cities in the first day or two of any war, anti-war organizers say. Some also foresee widespread walkouts at schools and workplaces. A smaller number talk of blocking roads and bridges.
"Once war happens, there will be civil disobedience. It's bringing to a higher level what people have been doing," said coordinator Bal Pinguel at the American Friends Service Committee, an arm of the pacifist Quaker church.
The peace movement that has taken shape in the United States and around the world uses organizing technology - including the Internet and e-mail - that was not available the last time such large-scale domestic anti-war activism took place, in the Vietnam War era.
On Saturday, demonstrators gathered by the hundreds in cities across the nation, an increasingly common sight as the conflict looms closer. In Washington, police and organizers estimated between 4,000 and 10,000 demonstrators turned out in conjunction with International Women's Day; by late afternoon, 25 people were arrested on charges of crossing a police line in front of the White House.
The event was organized by the group CodePink, whose name protests the government's terror alert system. "The White House is definitely afraid of women in pink and the power of love," said CodePink co-founder Jodie Evans.
Once spearheaded largely by leftist students, hippies and draft-card burners, the peace movement is now taking on more support from the mainstream: labor unions, war veterans, middle-aged professionals, and teenagers born years after the last draft. Almost 100,000 backers have donated to Peace Action, one of the biggest anti-war groups, over the past six months, coordinators say.
Still, despite its broader reach, it is unclear if the highly decentralized peace movement can marshal protests that can disrupt the war effort or win public sympathy. Some peace activists themselves harbor doubts that they can prevent a war against Iraq.
"There's a good chance we won't be able to stop it," said Kate Pearson, a Chicago organizer at Not in Our Name.
In a counter effort, rallies to support President Bush and U.S. troops in a possible war also are being held across the country, and anger at the anti-war movement sometimes is apparent. Echoing a slogan from the 1960s, one placard at an Orlando, Fla., rally read: "America - Love It or Leave It."
Peace activists have mounted mass rallies in major cities reminiscent of the Vietnam era, but they have also held smaller community vigils and discussion groups, and traditional contact-your-congressmen drives.
In January and again in February, peace groups coordinated demonstrations in cities around the world. Hundreds of thousands of protesters unfurled signs and rallied in New York, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, London, Berlin, Rome, Tokyo, Cairo and other cities.
On Wednesday, thousands of students around the United States walked out of classes. Some Americans have taken quiet, personal actions too.
Anti-war members of the clergy have slipped into Iraq - without U.S. government permission mandated by American sanctions law - or visited European countries to lobby and pray with the local religious communities. Anti-war American doctors have gone to Iraq to evaluate the dangers that war poses for civilians there.
Picking up on domestic anxieties, some anti-war activists have argued that conflict might foster more terrorism that endangers American civilians on their own turf. "It's almost certainly going to guarantee not only more violence in the Middle East, but will almost guarantee another calamitous attack on U.S. soil," said Scott Lynch, a spokesman for Peace Action.
The White House has argued that disarming Iraq is part of its war on terrorism and will disrupt that government's links with terrorist groups.
The peace movement has also embraced a particularly influential contingent of supporters: veterans of the war with Iraq 12 years ago.
"Sept. 11 was nothing compared to the destruction that we visited on Iraq 12 years ago and even more so for what will probably happen this time," said Charles Sheehan-Miles, a decorated tank crewman in the 1991 Persian Gulf War who now wants peace.
President Bush has acknowledged the swelling protests, though they have not changed his mind.
After February's protests, he said he would not decide policy "based upon a focus group." At a White House news conference Thursday, he addressed protesters directly. "I recognize there are people who don't like war. I don't like war," Bush said. But he said Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein must be deposed to disarm Iraq and keep the United States safe, and that might only be accomplished with force.
For his part, Doug Dixon, an activist who has joined counter-demonstrations to back the drive toward war, shrugs off the peace movement as "pretty irrelevant." Dixon, a Houston-based member of the conservative grass-roots group Free Republic, believes the anti-war movement is encouraging Saddam Hussein.
"I'm certain he's watching," Dixon said.
Outside of Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, N.M., on Saturday, about 250 people rallied in support of American troops and the Bush administration, while 50 anti-war protesters gathered across the street, police Capt. Sonny Leeper said.
"We're starting to see more 'support the flag' people at these things," Leeper said. "They're starting to gain in numbers. ... It seems like they're getting more organized."
Fantastic. On AP yet.
What was the tank decorated with? Flowers?
C'mon, LD. That is a cheap shot. We should respect his service even if we don't agree with him. After all, we want everyone, pro or con this war, to support and respect our troops.
I'm guessing he probably got shot at....or at least did some shooting in an attempt to kill bad guys.
I always thought they said once the war begins, they will end their protests and support our troops.
I have only heard from early on that their plan is to disrupt and obstruct.
Here's all I have to say about it:
If you find any co-worker has 'walked out' on his or her work as a clear, traitorous anti-American protest, the very first few days they, as an American, should in fact be GETTING BEHIND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA IN WAR or otherwise keeping their piehole shut, I think it would be most prudent to overturn the a@@holes' desk, throw their files and papers on the floor, and crazy glue closed their file drawers.
If they want to take their little war to grassroots America, there are MANY, MANY of us who will not stand for it.
We don't just "believe" - WE KNOW Sodom supports the leftists - HE'S ACTUALLY ON RECORD SAYING SO!
...Outside of Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque, N.M., on Saturday, about 250 people rallied in support of American troops ..."We're starting to see more 'support the flag' people at these things," Leeper said. "They're starting to gain in numbers. ... It seems like they're getting more organized."
DC Chapter "more 'support the flag' getting more organized" PINGS )))))))
No kidding. It's almost shocking that they didn't include some adjective to paint us as radical, pro-war, or GOP-backed. Some neutral and honest mentions for a change. I like it!
Artwork and linkage by FReeper Howie. Stick them inside your cars rear window with a few bits of 3M Magic Tape, the tape will peel off easily with no glue residue even after months in the sun.
I actually got one hippie to tacitly confess something fairly nasty at a party one night. We were talking about Central America and native Americans vs Whites and so forth. And I said, "You know, you say we took their land but they were not a unified people, they killed EACH OTHER and took the land from one another."
He said, "I don't care about that, we-"
And I broke in and said, "So you don't care if people die, just so long as it can't be traced to you."
And he just stood there for a minute, blinking, with his beer in his hand and his long dirty blond hair in his eyes. Then he said, "You have a way of putting things I've never heard before."
Bragging aside, this is the same mentality that these "anti-war" protestors are evincing. They know people have died by Saddam's hand, and that more WILL die. They aren't against people dying. They are against having anyone think they are somehow to blame, that's all. And they at least do sense on some level that people are always more ready to blame the US than Saddam. They at least are cognizant of that.
The AP reporter needs to ask more questions to get an honest read on this situation. It's not 1964, this is not your father's antiwar movement.
Almost 100,000 backers have donated to Peace Action, one of the biggest antiwar groups, over the past six months, coordinators say.
Sleeping in?? I've been up since 3:00 a.m. Anyway, yeah, we thought is was cool, too. The AP reporter contacted me through our Chapter web site and I set up the interviex with Dix. It hit the wires Saturday and there is a previous thread. Thanks for thinking about us.
Second, the liberals hate Bush who IS NOT a tool of the devil.
Third, the liberals LOVE klinton.
Fourth, bombing Yugoslavia was an evil aggressive operation based on lies coming out of the mouths of islamic extremists( read as: friends of bill).
Fifth, klinton ordered the bombing to please his friends.
So, you see liberals love klinton's aggression on Yugoslavia and hate Bush and his policies to save us from bill's friends: the evil satan-loving islamic extremists.
Anti-war protester Brianna Binkerd-Dale, of CodePink Women for Peace, is removed by police officers from outside the gates of the north side of the White House in Washington Saturday, March 8, 2003. Hundreds of people rallied Saturday in cities around the nation in support of, and against, a possible war with Iraq. Several thousand people chanted and cheered in Washington as women united against war pledged to rally a nation of daughters, mothers and grandmothers in a push for peace. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
I think there are at least 4 threads with the same article. The individual newspapers write their own headline.
It's nice that the FreeRepublic name will be in so many papers.
I think it is real. The main stream has finally figured out we ain't going away.
Figures. Isn't International Women's Day another communist parade?
Roots of International Women's Day Revolutionary Worker #1094, March 11, 2001, posted at rwor.org
Their spirit ricochets through time from the days when immigrant women marched out of the factories in America and shocked everybody with their resolve.
International Women's Day, March 8, is a holiday celebrated by the oppressed around the world. It is a holiday that came out of the struggle of women. In particular, the struggle of immigrant garment workers in New York's Lower East Side provided the inspiration for the demand that there be a special day to celebrate the struggle of women. From the beginning, International Women's Day has been linked with the communist revolution.
Around the turn of the century thousands of women worked in the garment district in New York. Most of these women were immigrants from Russia, Italy and Poland. They worked up to 15 hours a day and were paid by the piece. They were charged for needles, thread, electricity, and even the crude boxes they had to sit on because there were no chairs. They were issued harsh fines--for being late, for damaged work, for taking too much time in the toilet. Children also worked long hours, huddled in the corners of the shops, snipping threads from finished garments. One garment worker recalled, "We wore cheap clothes, lived in cheap tenements, ate cheap food. There was nothing to look forward to, nothing to expect the next day to be better.''
In 1908 women began to stage walkouts and strikes at various sewing factories. Sometimes a company would settle a strike by meeting some of the demands of the male strikers but included clauses in the settlement that said "no part of this agreement shall refer or apply to females.'' In spite of many arrests and heavy fines, in spite of brutal beatings by police and hired thugs, the women, many of them teenagers, continued the walkouts. Middle and upper class women inspired by the strikers came out to the pickets to give their support and were arrested too. And when newspapers covered these unusual arrests, the public began to find out about the brutal conditions and slave wages of the women strikers.
After months of small shop actions the women decided to escalate the struggle by calling for a tradewide general strike. And in defiance of the heads of the union, on November 22, 1909, the "Uprising of Twenty Thousand'' began.
One garment worker from the Triangle Shirtwaist Company described the event: "Thousands upon thousands left the factories from every side, all of them walking down toward Union Square. It was November, the cold winter was just around the corner, we had no fur coats to keep warm, and yet there was the spirit that led us on and on until we got to some hall to keep warm and out of the wind and out of the cold for at least the time being. I can see the young people, mostly women, walking down and not caring what might happen. The spirit, I think, the spirit of a conqueror led them on. They didn't know what was in store for them, didn't really think of the hunger, cold, loneliness, and what could happen to them. They just didn't care on that particular day; that was THEIR day.''
The strike lasted for months and ignited strikes in other areas. Though the strike itself was only partially successful in terms of changing work conditions, the "uprising" did change some important things. It challenged the image of what uneducated immigrant women could do, and it filled the East Side and many women and immigrants and oppressed people more broadly with pride and a sense of strength.
In 1910 the anniversary of these demonstrations, March 8, was declared International Women's Day by an international conference of socialists and communists. V.I. Lenin, the great leader of the Bolshevik Party and the Russian Revolution, was among those who voted at this conference to establish this tradition. Since then it has been celebrated worldwide by class conscious workers and those fighting for the liberation of women and the emancipation of all of humanity.
Since the 1960s, the AFSC has supported revolutionary terrorist groups such as the Vietcong, Palestine Liberation Organization(PLO), and the Central American Castroite groups. The theory behind AFSC's support of terrorist "national liberation movements" was outlined by Jim Bristol in a pamphlet published by AFSC in 1972 and continuously reprinted entitled "Non-violence: Not First for Export." Because AFSC's leadership role in organizing not only support for terrorist revolutionary groups, but in the past campaign to disarm America initiated through the USSR's covert action apparatus for political warfare, a closer look at AFSC's justification of violence is appropriate.
In the AFSC pamphlet, Bristol presents the totalitarian revolutionary goal in the most glowing terms as a utopia:
"a human society where the worth of the individual will be recognized and each person treated with respect....Land reform measures will be enacted....Education will be provided for every member of the society;....There will be employment for all. Discrimination because of race, colour or creed will end. Universal medical care will be provided." [If this all sounds strangely familiar, don't feel alone, these are all planks from the Communist Manifesto].AFSC's pamphlet asserts that the United States and other Free World countries are guilty of a bizarre "terrorism" which it calls the "violence of the status quo" and irrationally defines this in the broadest possible terms not only as every possible social ill, but also personal or social discomfort. In the words of the pamphlet, this "violence of the status quo" is:
"the agony of millions who in varying degrees suffer hunger, poverty, ill-health, lack of education, non-acceptance by their fellow men. It is compounded of slights and insults, of rampant injustice, of exploitation, of police brutality, of a thousand indignities from dawn to dusk and through the night."AFSC's pamphlet excuses terrorism in the following terms:
"terrorism...repeatedly...is used to signify violent action on the part of oppressed peoples in Asia, Africa, Latin America or within the black ghettos of America, as they take up the weapons of violence in a desperate effort to wrest for themselves the freedom and justice denied them by the systems that presently control their lives. "before we deplore terrorism, it is essential for us to recognize whose terrorism came first....It is easy to recognize the violence of the revolutionary when he strikes out against the inequities and cruelties of the established order. What millions of middle-class and other non-poor fail to realize is that they are themselves accomplices each day in meeting[sic] out inhuman, all-pervading violence upon their fellows."After this justification of the concept of class warfare, which makes "permissible" terrorist attacks on civilians since they are part of the "oppressive class," the AFSC pamphlet says that U.S. activists should not concern themselves with what sort of violent tactics revolutionaries utilize to achieve their ends. Instead, they should work to disarm the United States and for economic warfare against the U.S.s "oppressive" allies. In its words:
"Instead of trying to devise non-violent strategy and tactics for revolutionaries in other lands, we will bend every effort to defuse militarism in our own land and to secure the withdrawal of American economic investment in oppressive regimes in other parts of the world."The AFSC pamphlet concludes with a call for revolution in the United States, saying:
"Revolution then is needed first and foremost in the United States, thoroughgoing revolution, not a mild palliative."The director of the AFSCs Disarmament Program resurrected in the mid-1970s as a complement to the international disarmament campaign was Terry Provance, a World Peace Council(Soviet-controlled) activist and founding member of the U.S. Peace Council. Accompanied by two foreign Communist WPC activists, Nico Schouten, leader of the Netherlands "Ban the Neutron Bomb" organization, and East German Peace Council head Walter Rumpel, Provance addressed a Mobilization for Survival rally at the U.S. Capitol in October, 1979.
AFSC operates a lobbying arm, the Friends Committee on National Legislation(FCNL). Its focus and energies play a key role in developing strategy for pressure on Congress against the U.S. defense budget, and particularly against development or deployment of new weapons systems.
Another AFSC project, the National Action/Research on the Military/Intelligence Complex(NARMIC), served as the AFSCs "intelligence-gathering arm." NARMIC works closely with the Institute for Policy Studies(IPS), the North American Congress on Latin America(NACLA), a pro-Cuba research group, and other anti-defense and armament research organizations.
In all fairness, IAC and Ramsey Clark were against that as well as Clinton hitting Iraq in Desert Fox. They were also against the first Gulf War as well. However, it should be noted that IAC only has problems with American military interventions. Clark is on Milosevic's defense team and I believe he is defending a priest accused of genocide in Rwanda. Of course the IAC and ANSWER are fronts for the Workers World PArty which are fanatic Stalinist who supported the Tiannemen Square crackdown and love North Korea.
So yes..the small segment organizing the protests have been consistent. Consistent at lending their support and admiration of some of the filthiest despots and thugs in the world.