Why We Are Marching on April 12|
2003-04-10, 10:18 p.m.
OCCUPATION IS NOT LIBERATION:
March Will Target Corporate Profiteers, Fox News and the Pro-War Media
Having slaughtered and maimed thousands of Iraqi people, the U.S./British invasion forces are celebrating the use of their massive, overwhelming and brutal military power to crush resistance to their invasion of Iraq. The images portrayed in the U.S. media conceal the reality. While hospitals are overflowing with civilians and soldiers, the streets of the country are littered with incinerated bodies, destroyed homes and families buried alive. (See "Amid Allied Jubilation, a Child Lies in Agony, Clothes Soaked in Blood," Robert Fisk, The Independent (UK): http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/story.jsp?story=395117 )
The Bush administration is moving rapidly to impose a colonial-style occupation government on Iraq. This is not liberation. It is the use of overwhelming firepower to seize the land and resources of Iraq, and eliminate Iraq's sovereignty, while violating the most basic principles of self-determination. This is a war for Empire. The Bush administration, having carried out a war of conquest in Afghanistan and now in Iraq, will now step up its plans for future wars of aggression in the Middle East and elsewhere.
The people of the United States and the world must stand together with all of those who resist in the Middle East to say no to imperialism and to Empire. The occupation of Iraq will be used to set the stage for intensified war planning against Syria, Iran, southern Lebanon, North Korea, the Philippines, and against the Palestinian people who continue to resist occupation in their homeland. On Saturday, April 12, people in Washington DC and around the world will continue the mobilization against the invasion and the occupation in an international day of action with demonstrations in major capitals around the world.
The global movement that suddenly emerged in the past six months in opposition to Bush and the U.S. war drive is a singularly important development. People all over the world, in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Latin America, in the United States and in Europe marched in coordinated action. These movements have now defied borders and built an international voice of solidarity. Even the New York Times on February 17 referred to this movement as thesecond "superpower" in the world.
This movement represents the hopefulness of the planet thatwar, imperialism, oppression, racism and any form of colonialism can be overcome through the globalization of human solidarity.
It would be the most tragic and wasteful outcome if this movement - less than a year old - decided that its efforts had failed because Bush andthe Pentagon proceeded with their slaughter in Iraq. The war on Iraq does not prove the failure of the anti-war movement. If anything, the war on Iraq proves only that the economic, political and military authority in the United States is morally bankrupt. It is nurtured by a system that has become addicted to militarism and war.
Dick Cheney, speaking on behalf of the administration, promised after September 11 that there would be "endless war" and a war lasting a lifetime. These were neither idle comments nor rhetorical flourish. Since then, the administration has been absolutely brazen about its planned military adventures abroad and its systematic war against Arab Americans, Muslims and civil rights and civil liberties at home.
While they will never admit it, this planned "endless war" is a class war waged by the U.S. government on behalf of corporate and banking elites against all those governments in the formerly colonized world that have dared to maintain nominal independence and control over their natural resources. Bush put it succinctly when he said to the world "you are either with us or with them." Working people in the United States have nothing to gain from this war for Empire. It is for the enrichment and power of the same corporate and banking circles that have engaged in mass layoffs, union busting, wage cutting, elimination of healthcare and other benefits. In fact, Bush's war for Empire requires a massive transfer of wealth from social service programs to fund the Pentagon's rapidly expanding budget.
The Bush administration's plans for world domination are based on a fantasy entertained by the right wing and neo-conservative movement and corporate thieves thatmilitary power alone is the ultimate arbiter in world politics. The New World Order that they aspire to is similar to the Old World Order of 19th Century colonialism. The people of the world aspire for freedom, justice, equality and self-determination. Brute force alone will not reverse the long historical process whose necessary outcome is liberation. The essential element in this struggle is to maintain and build the global movement -- the force that has always and can win against military and economic might.
*** CHANGE OF LOCATION ***
The assembly site for the April 12 demonstration will be at 14th St. and Pennsylvania Ave. NW on the east side of the White House ("Freedom Plaza/Pershing Park"). This is a change from the Washington Monument grounds. The monument grounds are muddy from rain throughout the past week. We are expecting dry weather on Saturday.
The April 12 demonstration will include a brief rally and then a march that will target the offices of the corporations and mass media that have either profited from the invasion and occupation of Iraq or served as the principle purveyors of the lies and misinformation in service of the war machine.
Our march route takes us to the Carlyle Group, Fox News, the Justice Department and FBI, the White House, Bechtel, the Washington Post, the New York Times and the offices of Halliburton. Marchers will disperse at Farragut Square and take the metro from the Farragut West stop to RFK Stadium to get on their buses.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR BUSES COMING TO DC:
*Bus Drop Off*
Bus drop off will be on 14th St. south of Pennsylvania Ave. South. (between Pennsylvania Ave. and Constitution Ave. -- drop off on the north part of the block closer to Pennsylvania Ave). Buses should go to the bus drop off / rally location, drop off passengers, and then proceed to parking (see below). After the rally, passengers will take the metro from Farragut West to RFK Stadium/Armory (the bus parking location) to get back on the bus (details below).
*Bus parking at RFK Stadium*
We have arranged bus parking at RFK Stadium. Buses can park in Lot 8A. The cost of parking for the day will be $30 and buses must pay when they enter the parking lot. The bus drivers should indicate that they are with the A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition event.
A map of RFK stadium showing the parking areas can be found at http://www.dcsportscommission.com/directions/dcsec_parking.pdf
*After the rally*
The march will end at the Farragut West metro station. Volunteers will be on hand to help direct people. Bus passengers will take the metro to RFK Stadium/Armory on the blue/orange line. There will also be volunteers on hand at this end to direct everyone to the appropriate RFK parking lot. Buses will be parked in Lot 8A. It will cost $1.10 for each passenger.
If your driver needs to sleep during the day, we recommend that he/she park at RFK and take the metro to the hotel listed below which has given us a special day-rate. Details can be found at http://www.internationalanswer.org/campaigns/a12/logistics.html#dc1
Contact information for BUSES, VANS AND CAR CARAVANS TRAVELING TO DC can be foundat http://www.internationalanswer.org/campaigns/a12/a12transp.html
Additional details about the demonstration -- including driving directions, public transportation information, van and car parking, low cost housing, disability access, tabling policy and more about how you can get involved -- can be found on the April 12 logistics page at http://www.internationalanswer.org/campaigns/a12/logistics.html
*The National March to Stop the War on Iraq comes in the midst of the long-planned Latin America Solidarity Coalition (LASC) Mobilization Against Military and Economic Intervention in Latin America and the Caribbean. A.N.S.W.E.R. encourages participation in the LASC public plenaries including major Latin American speakers on Friday and Saturday at 7:00pm and the LASC rally and demonstration ending at the World Bank and IMF on Sunday, April 13. Visit the LASC web page at http://www.lasolidarity.org for details.*
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"Let us rise up tonight with a greater readiness. Let us stand with a greater determination. And let us move on in these powerful days, these days of challenge to make America what it ought to be. We have an opportunity to make America a better nation." - Martin Luther King, Jr.