Several member groups of United for Peace and Justice have been working together in the development of a National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance. We want to make sure that all know about this initiative, and that you are welcome to join this effort.
The organizers of the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance are launching this effort on the weekend of the 2nd anniversary of the U.S. war in Iraq: March 18-20th. For more information about the plans for that weekend and about the ongoing campaign please click here: http://www.iraqpledge.org
And just a quick reminder: if your group has plans for antiwar activities during the weekend of March 18-20 please make sure to post those on the calendar on the UFPJ website: http://www.unitedforpeace.org
A National Call for Nonviolent Resistance to the Continuing War in Iraq
“The great initiative in this war is ours; the initiative to stop it must be ours.” Dr. Martin Luther King
The war in Iraq continues to escalate, with more and more killed every day. The human toll has been enormous, claiming over 1,500 American lives and more than 100,000 Iraqi lives, while wounding, maiming and psychologically scarring hundreds of thousands more. This is not a war of liberation, or against terrorism. This is a war of empire building and corporate profiteering that threatens to destabilize Iraq for many years to come, while sowing new seeds of hate against the U.S. and fueling the cycle of violence and revenge.
The war in Iraq is a war based on lies. It is a war which violates both the U.S. Constitution and our obligations under international law. Characterized by the use of torture, collective punishment, mass bombardment and the destruction of civilian areas, it is a war that shames us morally before the world. And it is a war that is devouring hundreds of billions of dollars, robbing us of resources desperately needed in our own country for health care, housing, education, and jobs.
The bloodshed and death in Iraq will continue until we - the people of the United States - bring this war to an end, and any hope for positive international support for Iraq will be impossible until the U.S. military occupation ends and U.S. troops leave. Democracy can not be delivered in a cluster bomb, nor can it be imposed from under a tank or at the end of a gun. True democracy resides in the will of the Iraqi people. We respect their dignity and sovereignty, and their right to control of their own country.
We call for an end to the U.S. war of military occupation and for the setting of an early date for the withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq. Iraqis must be allowed to choose their own office-holders (and not be bound by those appointed by the US occupation authorities) and their own economic policies (and not be bound by the privatization regulations imposed by pro-consul Paul Bremer). All U.S. military bases in the country must be removed; and we call upon Washington to provide funds to aid in the reconstruction of the damage caused by the illegal US war.
We Call for Nonviolent Resistance to the War in Iraq
Times of great injustice call for acts of conscience and courage. In the loving spirit and discipline of Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Dorothy Day and others, we call on people to engage in acts and campaigns of noncooperation and active nonviolent resistance to the U.S. government, the military, the corporate merchants of war, and all institutions that feed the continuing conflict in Iraq.
To the millions who have marched, lobbied Congress or otherwise protested the war in Iraq, we call on you to continue your opposition, and to join together with others in nonviolent resistance to this immoral and unjust war. Our democratic voices of dissent joined with an unprecedented anti-war movement around the world. We must now build an equally unprecedented movement to nonviolently resist this war and bring it to an end. As the carnage increases and the military quagmire deepens in Iraq, the prospects for peace may seem dim and the momentum of war strong. But now more than ever is a time for dissent, not despair; for deepened commitment to peace, not complacency with war; for strengthened resistance, not weakened resolve.
To all who are sick of heart and conscience over the death and destruction in Iraq, we call on you to join us in nonviolent resistance to this war. For the sake of our humanity; for the sake of justice; for the sake of peace in Iraq, we must act now. And we cannot rest from our campaign of nonviolent resistance until our demands of peace and justice are met.
We call for expressions of nonviolent resistance that are many and varied. From the offices of Congresspersons and Senators to military recruiters and military bases, from our payment of federal taxes to the facilities where weapons are made that become the profits and sorrows of empire, we welcome each and every person who is moved to engage in or support noncooperation and nonviolent resistance, at whatever level, to take action.
To get more information about the Call for Nonviolent Resistance to the War and how you can get involved with nonviolent resistance efforts and campaigns, please go to our website at www.iraqpledge.org
Current endorsers of the Call as of March 1, 2005, list in formation (Please note that we are also encouraging and collecting organizational endorsements of the Call. You can find information about making organizational endorsements at our website.)
Ellen Barfield - Board Member, Veterans for Peace* and National Committee, War Resisters League
Medea Benjamin - Co-founder, Global Exchange and Co-founder, Code Pink
Phyllis Bennis - Institute for Policy Studies*
Michael S. Berg - Father of slain hostage in Iraq
Frida Berrigan - National Committee, War Resisters League
Rev. Roy Bourgeois, MM - Founder, SOA Watch*
Leslie Cagan - National Coordinator, United for Peace and Justice*
Tim Carpenter - Director, Progressive Democrats of America*
Gordon Clark - Coordinator, Iraq Pledge of Resistance
Stephen Cleghorn - Military Families Speak Out*
David Cobb - Cobb/LaMarche Campaign, Green Party USA*
John Dear - Jesuit Priest & author
Jeff Dietrich - LA Catholic Worker
Eve Ensler - Playwright and Founder, V-Day
Bruce K. Gagnon - Coordinator, Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space*
Arun Gandhi - Founder/President, Institute for Nonviolence, Memphis, TN
Bishop Thomas J. Gumbleton - Auxiliary Bishop, Archdiocese of Detroit*
G. Simon Harak - Anti-Militarism Coordinator War Resisters League
Tom Hayden - Professor and author
Kathy Kelly - Voices in the Wilderness
Pat LaMarche - Cobb/LaMarche Campaign, Green Party USA*
Lila Lipscomb - Military Families Speak Out*
Kevin Martin - Executive Director, Peace Action*
Father John P. McNamee - Philadelphia. Catholic Peace Fellowship* and author of Diary of a City Priest
Gael Murphy - Co-founder, Code Pink
Cindy Sheehan - Military Families Speak Out* and Co-founder, Gold Star Families for Peace*
Bob Smith - Brandywine Peace Community
Norman Solomon - Syndicated columnist & author
Rabbi Arthur Waskow
Ann Wright - Resigned as US Diplomat in opposition to Iraq War
Celeste Zappala - Military Families Speak Out* and Co-founder, Gold Star Families for Peace*