Larger than Expected Protests at the DNC
Thousands more will work to steer the election on this issue after the conventions in one million homes across the country.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Democrats may have believed that most activists would concentrate their efforts at the Republican National Convention; but, public sentiment against the war in Iraq has equally marred the opinion of a Congress controlled by Democrats.
“There are lots of activists here with different issues but the one salient issue which we all can agree on is Iraq,” said Jonathan Williams, Student Peace Action Coordinator in an interview from Denver. He continued, “The Democrats are just as accountable as the Bush administration for keeping us in Iraq. People here know that – the American people know that.”
In response to the overwhelming public opinion condemning both Republicans and Democrats for compliance with Bush administration policies in Iraq a collation of peace groups working to end the war in Iraq announced plans for the year’s largest anti-war mobilization to follow-up on the conventions. Million Doors for Peace, scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 20, will ask at least one million people throughout the country to sign petitions urging the next Congress to bring U.S. troops home from Iraq within one year.
The coalition launched its website, www.MillionDoorsForPeace.org/pa, last week and is encouraging activists protesting at the conventions to continue their activism in their neighborhoods at home. The action combines the best of grassroots activism and support from the netroots. The campaign will allow tens of thousands of volunteers to download a neighborhood “walk list” from the coalition website. Volunteers will use this public information to talk to and identify neighbors who oppose the Iraq war and will invite them to join the efforts to end the war.
Leslie Cagan, National Coordinator of United for Peace and Justice, said, “The antiwar sentiment throughout the country has never been stronger. To help bring greater visibility to the depth of opposition to the war in Iraq, on Sept. 20th the Million Doors for Peace project will put thousands of people out on the streets in communities in all 50 states. This massive, national mobilization will send a clear message: it is time to bring all the troops home! Cagan concluded, “Too many people have died, and precious resources have been squandered while the needs of our communities continue to go unmet.”
The coalition organizing Million Doors for Peace includes: Catholics United, Cities for Peace, CodePink, MoveOn.org, Pax Christi USA, Peace Action, Progressive Accountability, Progressive Democrats of America, United for Peace and Justice, USAction & TrueMajority.org, Voters for Peace and Win Without War.
Combined, the coalition boasts a membership in the millions and hundreds of state and local affiliates. The overarching goal of recruiting over one million war opponents is to broaden and expand the nation’s anti-war constituency so that when the next Congress convenes it will not be able to ignore the call for immediate action to end the war in Iraq.
Paul Kawika Martin, Organizing and Political Director of Peace Action; said, “Peace Action is proud to be part of this initiative. It is important to bring the issue of Iraq into people’s homes if we want to make an impact on the next Congress. The American people have had enough of this war and will not tolerate a complacent Congress.”
PEACE ACTION is the nation’s largest grassroots peace network, with chapters and affiliates in 30 states. It organizes its grassroots network to place pressure on Congress and the Administration through write-in campaigns, internet actions, citizen lobbying and direct action. http://www.peace-action.org
Deja Vu all over again. It’s been 40 years – don’t forget the pig.
All the more reason to keep the pressure on – UNITE TO FIGHT INJUSTICE. Whether it’s Chicago in 68 or Denver in 08 our representatives MUST be held accountable to us.
Let’s get rolling on the Million Doors for Peace. Where are the details? Where is the text of the “Petition”? How can we accelerate the signups locally? We have a Peace Action chapter that’s very active. And this is a chance to reinvigorate the other peace groups who have gotten sidetracked and diffused lately. PLEASE roll out some kind of a tiered organizing model that empowers local and regional groups. FOR EXAMPLE we want access to the lists of people, and, I think our local groups will support sharing the lists who work on MDP upstream to Peace Action, as well. Step on the gas, let’s get this thing moving,
The details are here http://www.peace-action.org/iraq/campaigns/milliondoors.html including the text of the petition. You are the organizational model! You are an active empowered peacenik with a mind and a spirit to unite your community with this plan. The first step is to register and find a route. You can do so here http://www.milliondoorsforpeace.org/signup.php?code=pa once you’ve done that they’ll send you a kit to go around with. In the mean time I would stress to YOUR network how important this is to you. Drop them a phone call, speak to them during coffee on the weekend – send them an email – whatever. Just get them involved!
I did not find it possible to ask the question I had, the FAQ did not appear. My question was, “How does one respond to the reply, “The surge is working. We should stay until the country is safe and has a stable government.”
Hey, you should tell them the surge has not worked. A major aspect of the surge has been segregation and ethnic cleansing in the most violent regions. Rather than brokering real peace between various groups in Iraq and coalition forces we have separated them into quadrants. Basically, the surge created a small quell in violence which will erupt again unless we do some serious conflict resolution and reconstruction work.
Tell them there is no way to ‘contain’ the issues (those which we created and those which were already there) in Iraq through a continued occupation. (Unless you believe the British colonialist who believed the Indians and the Pakistanis needed that occupation – ‘we dug this giant grave for ourselves and we’re going to dig our way out of it” type of thinking). They are a sovereign nation with all the problems of a sovereign nation – just like us. We can help them to solve those issues but we cannot force them into submission with a continued occupation.
The surge is address in our Iraq talking points fact sheet available here: http://www.peace-action.org/pub/factssheets/index.htm
This is quite a hot information. I’ll share it on Digg.