Freedom Road Socialist Organization

National Conference - October 18, 2008 - War, Socialism and the People's Struggle

War, Socialism and the People's Struggle flyer

War, Socialism and the People's Struggle

A conference on imperialism and how to end it

Saturday, October 18, 2008
9 am - 5 pm
Minneapolis, Minnesota
U of M Humphrey Bldg Rm 25

Join us on Saturday, October 18 in Minneapolis, Minnesota for this important conference on imperialism and how to end it. At the conference there will be workshops and discussion that brings together activists from the anti-war, immigrant rights, labor, oppressed nationality, student and low-income movements. There will be presentations from some of the leaders of these movements and from Freedom Road Socialist Organization.

Speakers will include:

Jess Sundin
Anti-War Committee and Freedom Road Socialist Organization

Mick Kelly
Editor of Fight Back! Newspaper

We will also be talking about how to build a revolutionary media that serves the people, grassroots organizing, building a revolutionary organization and the direction for the people's struggle in 2009.

Click here for PDF of conference flyer

For more information, contact Fight Back! at info@fightbacknews.org

or via mail at:
Fight Back!
PO Box 582564
Minneapolis, MN 55448

We look forward to seeing you in October!

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Over the last six years there has been an upsurge in the people's struggle in the United States: the growth of a mass anti-war movement not seen since the fight against the war in Vietnam in the 1960s and 1970s; the emergence of an immigrant rights movement and the largest struggle for equality since the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s; and a growing fight back against foreclosures, job cuts and cuts in health care, education, welfare and a growing economic crisis.

Fight Back! has covered these struggles and sees the growth of the people's struggle calling for a higher level of understanding of our common struggle against imperialism - a system based on giant corporations that cross the globe in search of ever-greater profits, and these corporations' control of our government and use of military force to achieve their goals. Fight Back! is sponsoring this conference so that activists can share their experiences and learn more about imperialism and how we can fight to end it and replace it with a system of socialism, where people's needs, not corporate profits, are the basis of society.

Conference sponsored by Fight Back! Newspaper


Freedom Road - "SDS: Study and struggle, unite and fight!"

This is a statement by three people from Freedom Road Socialist Organization, in response to a debate in the radical student group SDS. FRSO members are active in building SDS. There are some who are uncomfortable with or who are straight up against having communists in SDS. This document addresses basic questions about why members of Freedom Road are involved in the student movement in groups like SDS, what their 'agenda' is, and what Marxism-Leninism means to FRSO. There is already some discussion of this document brewing here on the Marxist-Leninist blog, so I'd encourage people to chime in there if you have thoughts on this statement, on the role of communists in the student movement, or on any related issues.



http://frso.org/about/statements/2008/sds-study-struggle-unite-fight.htm

SDS: Study and struggle, unite and fight!

By Kati Ketz, Tracy Molm, and Kosta Harlan
for the Student Commission of Freedom Road Socialist Organization

We in Freedom Road Socialist Organization were disappointed to read Rachel Haut’s September 2008 interview with the Platypus project on “the present and future of SDS”. Freedom Road members work very hard to maintain Students for a Democratic Society as a strong, fighting organization that benefits from its ideological plurality while remaining united practically by radical, anti-imperialist activism. Unfortunately Rachel Haut, an SDS organizer in New York, said a few things to give us pause. We would like to take this opportunity to address those points here, because we think the things Rachel says have the potential to undermine some of SDS’s core principles. Mainly, we are concerned with the mistaken notion that FRSO wants to ‘take over’ SDS. We also want to address Rachel’s statement that “Maoism is in opposition to a democratic society” and that “it is inappropriate to have conversations about ideological differences when we still have Maoists in the organization”. Rachel says she will not ‘condone’ FRSO members being in SDS, and is, in effect, calling for all Marxist-Leninists to be purged. We think this sort of sectarianism is and has been a detriment to SDS as a whole. These are big issues, and we can’t deal with them thoroughly here. But we think a conversation is needed and that people in SDS should talk to us about these things, whether they agree or disagree with us.

What is Freedom Road’s agenda in SDS?

A few people think Freedom Road’s ‘agenda’ in SDS is to ‘take over’ and turn this radical and vibrant student organization into something we direct and control in an undemocratic way. Anybody who has spent any time working with us can see that this is not the case. Members of FRSO have been working in SDS since the first National Convention in Chicago back in 2006. What have we been doing? We have organized militant local chapters. We organized against the war in Iraq, for immigrants’ rights, labor solidarity, in defense of the Jena Six, and more. We are all involved in a lot of local work, and while doing that, we worked hard to build national campaigns. In 2007 and 2008 members of Freedom Road were in the lead of SDS’s work around opposition to the 4th and 5th anniversaries of the U.S. war against Iraq. This led to actions on more than 80 campuses in 2007 and on 90 campuses in 2008, many of which were not associated with SDS before. Through this and other work we’ve brought many new activists and student groups to radical politics and into SDS. We helped organize student contingents in major national marches and we also helped to organize the 2007 and 2008 National Conventions in Detroit and Maryland, and the 2008 SDS Action Camp in Asheville. We have always participated in an honest and straightforward way in SDS’s agreed-upon democratic processes and have never worked to undermine them or to marginalize others in SDS. It is the same for our members who work in the antiwar movement, the trade unions, the immigrants’ rights movement, in the movements of oppressed nationalities, and in the poor people’s movement. We will continue to work in this way.

What then is Freedom Road’s ‘agenda’ in SDS? Our larger strategy is available for all to see on our website – Class in the U.S. and Our Strategy for Revolution. That strategy is the United Front against Monopoly Capitalism. Furthermore, in all the work that we do, we try to keep in mind three revolutionary objectives:

  1. Harm the enemy and win all that can be won for the people.
  2. Raise the level of consciousness, organization, and struggle of the mass organizations we work in.
  3. Win the advanced fighters to Marxism-Leninism and build organization for revolution.

That should be straightforward enough. We believe that all three of those objectives are at the core of how we need to formulate revolutionary tactics.

Furthermore, we think that the contradiction between imperialism and the oppressed nations and peoples is the principle contradiction on a world-scale. We think the Iraq war, where U.S. imperialism is tied down by the armed Iraqi people, is the main front of this contradiction. Put simply, we think the Iraq war is central to the political situation in this country. We see the contradiction between U.S. imperialism and the sovereignty and self-determination of the Iraqi people as playing a determining role in relation to all other contradictions in society. We also believe that, despite all of its shortcomings and problems, the antiwar movement has tremendous potential for SDS. So to that end, much of our work in SDS is centered on the war in Iraq. In that regard, our ‘agenda’ is best expressed in our 2007 statement, The Movement Against the War In Iraq: A New Period and Our Tasks. The core of that ‘agenda’ is keeping the demand for ‘troops out now’ at the forefront of the movement. In addition, we see raising an anti-imperialist pole in the antiwar movement, along with raising the social costs of the war, as tasks of major importance.

We came to these conclusions through a process of practice, summation, analysis, criticism and self-criticism, guided by Marxism-Leninism.

Why we are Marxist-Leninists

Rachel Haut says, “I think it is inappropriate to have conversations about ideological differences when we still have Maoists in the organization.” We see this as an open invitation to have just such a conversation. Therefore, we’re going to take this opportunity to say a few things about Marxism-Leninism and about the contributions of Mao Zedong and the Chinese Revolution.

We see Marxism-Leninism as a science, drawing from and synthesizing the great contributions of political economy, philosophy, and socialism that came before it. In this era of imperialism and proletarian revolution, Marxist-Leninists have made revolutions all around the world. Marxism-Leninism was an inspiration and a weapon in the hands of our predecessors. The same can be said today as it is used as a tool for liberation by working and oppressed people around the world, in Palestine, Colombia, Nepal, the Philippines, and here at home. We use Marxism-Leninism to analyze conditions and formulate strategies and tactics to act and change those conditions.

Two points are made by Rachel Haut regarding Marxism-Leninism: first, Rachel says it is opposed to democracy; second, she says it is irrelevant.

Marxist-Leninists have a particular understanding of democracy and the State and how democracy relates to class structures in society. We understand very well that in capitalist society, ‘democracy’ means that only the rich and powerful get a say. There is a lot of unity in SDS around this view, so we won’t dwell on it. The goal of socialism is at its very core related to this question of class and democracy. We think working people make society run, and should therefore run society. We think this demands revolutionary change. It is as simple as that. We think this is a million times more democratic than the bourgeois ‘democracy’ of the Republicans and Democrats. We hope that Rachel Haut is not being duped by tired old McCarthyite lies about ‘communist totalitarianism’ just because that’s what the ruling class teaches in their high school civics classes. That certainly isn’t what we intend, and we don’t think that accurately characterizes the former Soviet Union, the People's Republic of China, or the other socialist countries.

As for its relevance, the track record of Marxism-Leninism speaks for itself. The Great October Socialist Revolution in Russia, the Chinese revolution, the Vietnam war of national liberation and the dozens of national liberation movements that ended colonial rule, the hundreds of millions of people who found a way out from the misery imposed on them by imperialism, the establishment of socialism in over a third of the globe – all this did not fall out of the sky, but was in large part thanks to the heroic efforts of communist militants organized into revolutionary parties that creatively applied Marxism to their specific conditions. As for the 21st century, the overthrow of the Nepalese monarchy – a revolution at the roof of the world – was not an accomplishment of bourgeois democrats. This victory was paid for in blood by thousands of Nepalese communists, whose self-sacrifice, perseverance, and correct political practice allowed their small guerrilla movement to empower millions in the overthrow of the oppressor, and who are now moving forward in building a humane society in one of the poorest countries on earth.

In sum, it is the direct opposite of what our modern day anti-communists claim: nothing could be more relevant to the present political situation than Marxism, for as long as imperialism exists, the need for revolution is present, and to make revolution, there must be a communist party that applies Marxism to its particular situation.

On the contributions of Mao Zedong

Because Rachel Haut characterizes us as ‘Maoists’ we feel compelled to dwell on the place of Mao Zedong in all of this. We do not think that Mao Zedong was an infallible genius, nor do we think that he was solely responsible for the successes of the Chinese Revolution. Mainly that victory belongs to the Chinese people, but the communists helped to give form to their demands, and to carry out the revolution in strategic way that ultimately brought about success.

We in Freedom Road draw a great deal from the work of Mao Zedong. He made great contributions to revolutionary strategy and tactics for Third World liberation struggles, in particular his theory of protracted people’s war and New Democratic revolution. We think his formulation of the Mass Line, a method of leadership that involves learning from masses as you move forward, is central to success. We have a document on our website concerning this: Some Points on the Mass Line. Mao also contributed to Marxism-Leninism in his understanding of various contradictions in society, and how they interrelate. These are major issues for all revolutionaries. Finally Mao fought against some of the mistaken ideas that were put forward at various times by others in the socialist camp, including the Soviet Union. He led the fight against modern revisionism, which pretends to 'revise' Marxism while in truth undermining Marxism's basic revolutionary principles. In general the anti-revisionist struggle helped Marxist-Leninists clarify a number of pressing theoretical and practical issues.

Unity and Struggle in SDS

“We are not a vanguard,” Rachel says, regarding SDS. We are in agreement. For some reason that is unclear to us, Rachel Haut seems to think that we want to change this fact. What have we ever said or done to make anyone think that we want to make SDS into a ‘vanguard’, by which we assume she means something like a democratic-centralist, Marxist-Leninist organization? We have never said or done anything that should give her or anyone else that impression. By implying the contrary she is only trying to stir up trouble. FRSO has existed for more than twenty years. All this time we have worked in mass organizations, student groups, trade unions, and so on. We have always worked to strengthen those organizations, help them fight, win victories, and grow stronger. We have always been champions of real democracy, and have never tried to command the masses in a top-down way. Our work in SDS is no different.

We are opposed to ideological purges in SDS. We think SDS benefits from being a ‘big tent’ of different ideological tendencies. To this end Mao once said, “You may ban the expression of wrong ideas, but the ideas will still be there. On the other hand, if correct ideas are pampered in hothouses and never exposed to the elements and immunized against disease, they will not win out against erroneous ones. Therefore, it is only by employing the method of discussion, criticism and reasoning that we can really foster correct ideas and overcome wrong ones, and that we can really settle issues.”

We appreciate our friends and allies in SDS who, though they may not agree with us on everything, have defended us against attacks and have stood up against sectarianism. For that we are thankful. Sectarianism is harmful to SDS. It has created mistrust and provided fertile soil for damaging rumors and flat out lies. It can be used to sow division and undermines real democracy. We have found it damaging on several occasions to the hard work that we all do.

We think it is a good thing that anarchists, social-democrats, Marxists, and other radical Leftist ideological tendencies can coexist in SDS. We think this gives SDS its vibrancy and energy. We have gained valuable lessons and experience from working alongside of so many different political views in one organization. We think that as SDSers we have far more to unite us than divide us, and that at the core of our unity is practical struggle. Because despite our differences almost all of us can unite around this fact: we are out to fundamentally transform the social relations that exist in this country - to overthrow capitalism and empower oppressed and working people.

This is an enormous task and will require decades of hard work, sacrifice and perseverance. We recognize that building a national student movement is one step along the way to this goal. But we would like to emphasize that this movement cannot have sectarianism as one of its pillars. That is something we have always opposed and will continue to struggle against.

For our part, we will continue our work of building up militant local chapters, building national campaigns that help SDS grow and expand its reach, bringing students into the struggle against the war on Iraq, and dedicating our time, energy and resources to construct a national student movement. It is our sincere desire to reach out and learn from, work with, and unite any and all student activists – regardless of ideological orientation – along the way.

In unity and struggle,

Kati Ketz
Tracy Molm
Kosta Harlan
For the FRSO Student Commission


U.S. Out of Iraq: All Out for Sept. 1 RNC protest

The following is an editorial by Freedom Road Socialist Organization encouraging people to come to St. Paul, MN for massive protests against the Republican National Convention. The biggest march is planned for day 1 - September 1st. For info on that march, check out the Coalition to March on the RNC to Stop the War website. For other protests from Sep 1-4, check Protest RNC 2008. I think this editorial lays out the importance politically of confronting the people responsible for the invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as a list of other crimes almost too large to fathom. Read this editorial, and consider going to St. Paul in September to confront the warmakers.

U.S. Out of Iraq: All Out for Sept. 1 RNC protest

On Sept. 1, 2008 the Republican Party will hold its national convention at the Xcel Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota. They will be there to nominate John McCain for president, and justify the wars against - and occupations of - Iraq and Afghanistan. The Republicans will gather to celebrate economic policies that have brought riches to the few and foreclosures, homelessness and unemployment to the many. Republican delegates will cheer the anti-immigrant attacks as party leaders try to use racism to cement their reactionary supporters. We can also expect attacks from the podium on women’s rights to control our own bodies and attacks on gay marriage.

The main thing the Republicans will be doing in Saint Paul is building support for John McCain in his bid to continue Bush’s policies of the past eight years. John McCain has said that the U.S. occupation of Iraq could last for 100 years and that he wants to make sure the rich remain as wealthy as possible by keeping tax cuts and the cuts to healthcare and education that go with them. The Republican National Convention (RNC) will try to shore up support and U.S. national chauvinist fervor for the Iraq occupation throughout the convention. Five years of war is more than long enough. The troops need to come home now so that the Iraqi people can take control of and begin to rebuild their own country. The government needs to stop running up trillions in debt that our children and grandchildren will be paying off and that will lead to even more cuts in health care, education and other human needs in the name of a failed strategy to dominate the Middle East.

All of us know what is wrong with the politics and policies of the Republicans. Sept. 1 is the time to change knowing into doing. Bush, Cheney and the lesser-known but equally powerful will be together on location in Saint Paul. The RNC is a prime opportunity to bring our demands directly to the war-makers. Not only will the architects of the occupation be in Saint Paul, 10,000 journalists from around the world will be there as well. This is one of those rare times when the whole world really will be watching and we cannot allow the only message to be shiny happy Republicans dancing on the dead men, women and children of Iraq for their own political gain. We have a right to march against the war and the Republican agenda. The police are seeking impede that right by issuing a permit that makes it difficult for tens of thousands to march on the Xcel Center. Organizers in Minneapolis and Saint Paul need our support between now and September to win the battle for an acceptable permit.

Many people are planning many different activities that will send powerful messages to both the Republicans and the world. The permitted march on Sept. 1, organized by the Coalition to March on the RNC and Stop the War, is a very important event. In the course of the four days of the convention many movements with many tactics will be seeking to challenge the Republican agenda. While there may be differences of emphasis, issues or tactics, organizers are striving for a sense of unity and solidarity. Saint Paul police have already formed a special unit for the purpose of dividing us from each other. We can’t allow them to succeed.

Organizers have come together around a number of important principles. These principles say in part that our solidarity will be based on respect for a diversity of tactics and the plans of other groups. That debates on tactics will stay internal to the movement, avoiding any public or media denunciations of fellow activists and events. Another principle is opposition to state repression of dissent and a refusal to assist law enforcement actions against activists and others. Furthermore, a separation of time or space will be maintained to allow for different kinds of protests to take place. This set of principles is very good and is part of what will allow the largest and strongest demonstrations against the war and occupation.

The Republican Convention will come one week after the Democratic National Convention in Denver. The Denver convention will also see protests against the war. For too long the Democrats have been complicit in carrying out the occupation of Iraq and they should also be held accountable for empty promises to end the war.

Here is a promise that we know will be kept. On Sept. 1 a diverse coalition of activists will gather to March on the RNC. Tens of thousands will march from the State Capitol to the Xcel Center to stop the war and oppose the Republican agenda. Peace activists and anti-imperialists, veterans, trade union members, immigrant workers, low-income families, anti-police brutality and anti-globalization activists, communists and anarchists will march together. We will march to be heard, we will march to stop the war and we will march to show the world that real opposition exists to the Republican agenda.

U.S. out of Iraq now

Money for human needs, not for war

Say no to the Republican agenda

Demand peace, justice and equality


2008/03 - FRSO - Revolution in Colombia: ISO stands on the wrong side

Reprinted from http://frso.org/about/statements/2008/isocolombia.htm

Revolution in Colombia: ISO stands on the wrong side

By Freedom Road Socialist Organization

A call was made by progressives in Colombia, including organizations of campesinos and trade unionists to stand up to “state sponsored violence” by demonstrating on March 6.


2008/02/22 - The Marxist-Leninist: Freedom Road on the Mass Line

Freedom Road on the Mass Line

Freedom Road on the Mass Line

2008 Trotskyist Polemic - The US Left and the US economic crisis: Part Two – Maoists and Mensheviks: Introducing FRSO

The following is a Trotskyist polemic written in early 2008 against Freedom Road Socialist Organization. It was originally published on the Labor Action yahoo group. It is reprinted here after the author gave permission for it to be published more broadly on the Leftist Trainspotters yahoo group.


The US Left and the US economic crisis: Part Two – Maoists and Mensheviks: Introducing Freedom Road Socialist Organization


FRSO 2004 Main Political Report: Section on the Working Class

http://frso.org/about/4Congress/mpr_domestic.htm

Freedom Road Socialist Organization
4th Congress, 2004
Main Political Report
Domestic Section

[This is an excerpt from the Domestic section of FRSO's 2004 Main Political Report]

The Working Class

Attacks on the Working Class

The working class has been under increasing attack in the last period. Unemployment remains high - 9.9 million jobless - and the number of unemployed running out of benefits is at an all-time high.


Tables and Tents

There are tons of organizations that have tables at the US Social Forum, going on right now in Atlanta. A large section of the U.S. left is represented - revolutionary parties and organizations as well as mass and community based and issue-based groups. There are tables all over the first and second floor of the Civic Center, and outside there are theme-based tents such as the immigrant rights tent, anti-war, Palestine, Latin America, water issues, youth tent, democracy tent, etc. People trickle and swarm in and out of the tables and tents all day and evening. At night there are parties, events, and the like going on all over. Tons of activity.

Of the tables, I have to say (of course I'm biased!) that the Freedom Road Socialist Organization table is among the best. Here are some pictures of the table, which includes the usual table staples such as pamphlets and books, but also has a broad assortment of revolutionary-themed clothing, jewelry, purses, accessories, buttons, and more, provided by the Revolutionary Lemonade Stand (see the Rev. Lemonade Stand logo on the right side of the page!).

I'll post some pictures of other stuff later!


2007/01/31: Lefter, Warmer Blog - How Marxism Leninism Drives People Away from Socialism

From Lefter, Warmer Blog
January 31, 2007

One of the major events of this holiday season for the US left was Freedom Road Socialist Organization member, Stan Goff's public rejection of Marxism-Leninism.


'Out of Iraq Now': Response to Bush's State of Union Speech

This is reprinted from Fight Back Newspaper:

'Out of Iraq Now'
Response to Bush's State of Union Speech

Jess Sundin is a leading member of Freedom Road Socialist Organization. She traveled to Iraq in 1998 and has played a important role in the Twin Cities anti-war movement since then. We interviewed her after the State of the Union address, where President Bush attempted to bolster support for his plans to expand the war in Iraq.


Fight Back!: What is Bush’s strategy for Iraq and what do you expect to happen next?

Jessica Sundin: In four years U.S. troops have failed to secure the Iraqi capitol city of Baghdad. Thousands of military checkpoints haven’t stopped the Iraqi resistance. Every month more U.S. soldiers are killed; now a total of 3050 are dead. As many as 655,000 Iraqis have been killed. Baghdad is so out of control that it could cause the weak U.S. hold on Iraq could fall apart.

President Bush’s new strategy will try to turn this around. The plan is to send 21,500 more troops to Iraq, most of them to Baghdad. Troops will raid civilian neighborhoods and set up military bases and check points in cleared-out areas. New resources will go to reinforce the Iraqi army and joint operations with U.S. and Iraqi forces. 4000 U.S. troops will be deployed to the Anbar province, a stronghold of the patriotic Iraqi resistance.

The U.S. military will not win the battle for Baghdad or Anbar. Instead, the trend of insurgent attacks will grow, as occupation forces engage insurgent strongholds and attempt to set up bases of operations in the areas where Iraqis are most strongly opposed to the U.S. presence. U.S. forces will fail to deliver on promises of greater security in Baghdad, as they turn more civilian neighborhoods into hot battlegrounds.

Bush called this plan as a “surge” and said Iraqi forces could take over Baghdad by November. There is no reason to believe the massive troop increase - from around 140,000 to over 160,000 - will be short-term. Instead we should understand this is an escalation of the war in Iraq and it is a desperate strategy doomed to failure. The Bush plan will bring more violence to Iraq and Iraqis will only fight harder to throw out the occupying U.S. army.

Fight Back!: Many voters saw the last election as a referendum on the war and voted against Bush. Now Bush is doing the opposite of what they voted for. Why?

Sundin: Since Bush announced the increased troop deployment, polls have shown that as many as 70% of Americans oppose his new plan. Most think the plan will fail and instead want U.S. troops to leave Iraq. According to a recent USA TODAY/Gallup Poll, Bush’s overall approval rating has dropped to a new low: 34%. Even so, Bush dismisses all criticism of his plan, whether from the public, Congress or his own military.

Bush’s policy objectives in Iraq are not concerned with his own popularity or with democracy. The policy is aimed simply at defending the interests of U.S. political, economic and military empire. Again and again, Bush has told us that if the U.S. leaves Iraq in defeat, it will only encourage anti-American extremists throughout the world. Bush is not talking about another 9/11 attack. He’s talking about the threat posed by Iraq once again rising to be truly independent of U.S. imperialism.

Fight Back!: Politically, how do you see the debate on the war unfolding over the next few months?

Sundin: From Congress, we can expect toothless criticism of the war and no real commitment to stopping it. There may be resolutions adopted that say the so-called surge is a bad plan; there may be calls for a timeline to end the war or plans to redeploy or reorganize the troops stationed in Iraq; a few politicians may even vote against funding the war. Some of these efforts may even be bipartisan, but they will all avoid the heart of the matter: Neither Democrats nor Republicans will confront the Bush administration and demand that all the U.S. troops get out of Iraq now.

The stance of the Democratic Party is stated very clearly by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. She said Congress would vote for resolutions opposing Bush’s new Iraq war strategy, but, “Democrats will never cut off funding for our troops when they are in harm’s way.”

Fight Back!: What do you think are the tasks of the anti-war movement this spring?

Sundin: The anti-war movement must demand that all U.S. troops get out of Iraq now. ‘Out now’ means ‘out now’ and this needs to be the basis of unity for our movement. We should not accept timelines for withdrawal, redeployment or any plan that falls short of an immediate and total end to the occupation. Some argue that Iraqis will fight each other if we leave, but Iraqis are fighting now. Every day, patriotic forces that oppose the occupation and represent that vast majority of Iraqi people are fighting for their lives against the occupation forces and its handful of traitorous Iraqi supporters. When the occupation ends, this conflict will end too.

This is a brutal war. The anti-war movement should stand in solidarity with the Iraqi people and denounce atrocities and crimes committed by U.S. forces in Iraq. These will get worse now that Bush has lifted restrictions on U.S. troops in Iraq - and the new forces will operate almost entirely in civilian areas. We say no to every murder and abuse of unarmed civilians; no to the imprisonment of tens of thousands of Iraqis without charge; no to the environmental devastation caused by weapons like depleted uranium and white phosphorous; no to a fake Iraqi democracy based on religions divisions and led by an illegitimate puppet government.

The anti-war movement must be a voice for the millions who voted against the war. The majority was with us at the ballot box last November. Now we must to bring them with us into the streets. When Congress fails to stand up to President Bush and his war, we must work to build a bigger, stronger and more militant anti-war movement.

While U.S. troops are bogged down in Iraq, the Bush administration is eyeing a bigger prize; they want to reshape the entire Middle East. Within the anti-war movement, we need to answer this by opposing U.S. threats against Iraq’s neighbors, U.S. aid to reactionary governments throughout the Middle East U.S. support for the 59-year Israeli occupation of Palestine.


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