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Resisting the War
In trying to raise consciousness and inspire activist resistance regarding the currently threatened invasion of Iraq, critics repeatedly confront variations on relatively few themes. The following article tries to distill these themes into a series of questions and answers. We invite and welcome reproduction in any form true to the original intent.
1. Are U.S. leaders correct in their characterization of Saddam Hussein as a monster?
What most people mean by the term monster is a leader who pursues policies that violate every norm of morality and international human rights law. By this definition, Saddam Hussein is certainly a monster: he has murdered thousands of political opponents and tens of thousands of members of ethnic minorities, repressed the population, and waged wars of aggression against Iran and Kuwait. A second, hypocritical definition is that anyone the U.S. government considers an enemy and insufficiently pliant is a monster.
How can we tell which definition U.S. leaders use? There are two simple tests. First, look at instances of leaders in other countries who are violators of human rights, but who serve U.S. interests. Are they branded as monsters by the U.S. government, which they would be by the first definition, but not by the second? To take an example: Suharto of Indonesia presided over killing at least half a million Indonesians and some 200,000 East Timorese, but Washington did not denounce him as a monster, rather it provided him with arms and diplomatic support (even provided his army with names of Communists to wipe out).
The second test is to look at how the United States characterized and treated Saddam Hussein before August 1990, when he was serving U.S. interests. It was in this period that his worst atrocities took placehis invasion of Iran, his use of chemical weapons against both Iran and Iraqi Kurds, his Anfal campaign of slaughter against the Kurdish population. Again, Washington did not denounce him as a monster, rather it provided him with economic aid, military intelligence, diplomatic support, and equipment that could have been (and presumably was) used for his weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs.
Two of Husseins atrocities deserve special mention. In 1975, the United States which, together with Iran and Israel, had been aiding a Kurdish revolt in Iraq, abruptly cut off its support for the Kurds when the Shah of Iran, Washingtons close ally, struck a deal with Iraq. As Baghdad turned its full wrath on the Kurds, many of the latter sought U.S. assistance in obtaining asylum. In closed session testimony, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger explained why the U.S. rejected their appeal for help: covert action, he declared, should not be confused with missionary work (Select Committee on Intelligence, 1/19/76 [Pike Report] in Village Voice, 2/16/76; William Safire, Safires Washington, New York: Times Books, 1980).
In 1991, in the aftermath of the Gulf War, Hussein ruthlessly suppressed uprisingsencouraged by U.S. propaganda broadcastsof Kurds in the north and Shiites in the south. U.S. officials permitted Hussein to use helicopters (U.S. warplanes flew overhead watching Iraqi helicopters carry out their slaughter) and refused to allow the rebels access to the Iraqi weapons that the U.S. military had captured.
2. Are U.S. leaders right in their characterization of Saddam Hussein as a threat to world peace and security?
Saddam Hussein, given no obstacles, would probably hurt many more people by his actions than he already has. But he knows that if Iraq does anything to seriously endanger people outside its borders, it will be annihilated.
Husseins military position is far weaker today than it was before the 1991 Gulf War, a war in which his forces were decisively defeated. Whatever Husseins arsenal of weapons of mass destruction, surely his nuclear, chemical, and missile capabilities are fewer today than in 1990. At the same time, regular over flights subject Iraq to far more intense and intrusive surveillance than was the case prior to the Gulf War.
Yes, if an attack is unleashed on Iraq, Hussein in desperation might launch missiles at Israel or Saudi Arabia, but this is a very different matter from his launching an attack out of the blue. Far more likely to wage war on their neighbors are Israel or India, nations that are regionally dominant military powers. Of course, only one nation in the world has actually proclaimed its right to preemptively attack others, with or without UN authorization, and that is the United States.
3. What are the connections between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein?
One cannot prove the absence of connections. There are, however, good reasons for doubting any serious ties between the two.
Saddam Husseins Baathist regime has been ruthlessly secular and has no love for fundamentalist groups. Al Qaeda, for its part, considers its task the overthrow of all governments in the region that are insufficiently Islamic. Cer- tainly Husseins regime counts as such. (One might note that Iraq did not have diplomatic relations with the Taliban regime. The only countries that did have diplomatic relations with the Taliban were U.S. allies Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Pakistan.)
Of course, hostile parties can sometimes be useful to one another against a common enemy, but no evidence has come to light of cooperation between al Qaeda and Iraq. Since September 11, U.S. officials have been frantically looking for some connection between the two.
On September 24, 2002, the British government released a 55- page dossier laying out its case against Iraq. The evidence was said to come from British intelligence and analysis agencies, but also from access to intelligence from close allies. Surely this includes the United States and whatever hesitancy the United States government might have about revealing intelligence information publicly would not prevent it from sharing such information with its closest ally. The dossier presented zero evidence of any al Qaeda- Iraq links
In the last week of September, in the face of international and domestic hesitancy regarding the rush to war, U.S. officials again raised the specter of al Qaeda- Saddam Hussein links. Rumsfeld said he had bulletproof evidence tying the two together, but, significantly, he did not present that evidence and admits that it wouldnt hold up in a U.S. court of law.
There was one report, charged Rumsfeld, that Iraq provided unspecified training relating to chemical and/or biological matters. The report apparently came from Abu Zubaydah, a high-ranking al Qaeda prisoner who, according to an intelligence source cited by Newsday, often has lied or provided deliberately misleading information. As one U.S. official told USA Today, detainees have a motive to lie to U.S. interrogators: to encourage a U.S. invasion of Iraq, the better to make the case that the United States is the mortal enemy of Muslim countries.
This said, an attack on Iraq may well play into al Qaedas hands by destabilizing much of the Middle East and, in the words of former General Wesley Clark, possibly supercharge recruiting for the terrorist network (NYT, 9/24/02).
4. Does Saddam Hussein have weapons of mass
No one knows what weapons Saddam Hussein has. Most analysts assume that he has biological and chemical weapons. No one believes he has nuclear weapons.
We can presume that the most damning claims about the extent of his arsenal are contained in two recent documents: the September 24, 2002 dossier issued by the British government and an October 4, 2002 report by the CIA. There is good reason for thinking these documents exaggerated. For example, the British dossier identifies several once destroyed sites that it says have been rebuilt by the Iraqis. But Hans Von Sponeck, the former UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq, visited two of these sites and found that they were still destroyed. Other British reporters visited some of the sites listed in the dossier (chosen by them) and found nothing suspicious (Guardian, 9/25/02).
Even if these documents were not exaggerated they would make a good case for inspections, not war.
5. Is it true that Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons against Iran and his own people?
Yes. The British dossier and the October 4, 2002 CIA report give details of these actions, but they omit one fact: that the U.S. and British governments were backing Hussein when he committed these atrocities.
One should also note that Husseins chemical munitions are not the only weapons of mass destruction that have been used in Iraq. Far more people have died and are still dyingfrom the diseases attributable to the U.S.-British sanctions than from Husseins mustard gas or tabun.
6. How should we deal with Iraqs weapons of mass destruction?
Security Council resolution 687, the resolution calling for the post-Gulf War destruction of Iraqs WMD systems, noted in paragraph 14 that the disarmament actions represent steps towards the goal of establishing in the Middle East a zone free from weapons of mass destruction and all missiles for their delivery and the objective of a global ban on chemical weapons. The acquisition of WMD by one state generally encourages, rather than discourages, their acquisition by others. So the best method for dealing with Iraqi WMDboth from the point of view of justice and efficacyis in the context of global or regional disarmament.
To the United States and many other WMD states, however, serious disarmament is not on the agenda. The United States is a party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which sets up a class of have and have not nations, with the U.S. in the privileged have category, but Washington has refused to meet its obligation under the treaty to move towards disarmament; it has refused, for example, to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty that have-not nations consider a minimal litmus test indicating a countrys commitment to the NPT.
The United States is also a party to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). As a report for the Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies noted, After signing the treaty in 1993, Washington largely ignored it, escaping national embarrassment only with a last minute ratification just four days before its entry into force. Moreover, the United States took steps to dilute the Convention by including waivers in its resolution of ratification and implementing legislation exempting U.S. sites from the same verification rules that American negotiators had earlier demanded be included in the treaty.
Among the exemptions were the U.S. presidents right to refuse inspection of U.S. facilities on national security grounds. The United States is also a party to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC), but efforts to improve compliance with the treaty floundered after Washington blocked continued discussions. Among other WMD states, Israel has refused to sign the NPT or the BWC or ratify the CWC; India and Pakistan have refused to sign the NPT; and Egypt and Syria have not ratified either the CWC or the BWC.
But even though many nations act hypocritically, it would still be a good thing if Iraqs WMD programs were effectively inspected (not least, for establishing a precedent that could be extended to others). Most everyone favors the inspection of Iraqi WMD, other than Saddam Hussein and, as we can infer from its actions, Washington. Everything the United States has done for the last 11 years has had the effect of discouraging Iraqs cooperation with inspections.
Security Council resolution 687 declared that sanctions would be lifted when Iraq was disarmed, but the United States promptly removed Husseins incentive for disarmament, when in May 1991 deputy national security adviser Robert Gates officially announced that all sanctions would remain as long as Saddam Hussein stayed in power.
After the inspectors were withdrawn in 1998 so U.S./UK bombing could proceed, it was discovered that the United States had used the inspection teams for spying. Obviously, Iraq would not be inclined to admit inspectors again, if the United States was determined to attack Iraq no matter what, for in that case admitting them would weaken Iraqs defenses in the face of the inevitable assault. So an assurance from Washington that compliance with UN inspections would forestall an attack would provide an incentive for Husseins cooperation. But, declared Secretary of State Powell (ABC News, 5/5/02), regardless of whether inspectors are admitted, the United States reserves its option to do whatever it believes might be appropriate to see if there can be a regime change. Then, when Iraq on September 16 declared its willingness to allow the inspection, the White House replied: This is not a matter of inspections. It is about disarmament of Iraqs weapons of mass destruction and the Iraqi regimes compliance with all other Security Council resolutions.
Now the United States is trying to force through a Security Council resolution on inspections that could not possibly be accepted by Iraqessentially allowing U.S. military forces full access to Iraq and the right to unilaterally declare Iraq in non-compliance, thereby allowing the U.S. to invade Iraq with spies already in place to direct the attack (Guardian, 10/3/02). Such a proposal could have no other purpose than to make sure that inspections dont take place. Yes, Saddam Hussein has tried to obstruct and manipulate previous inspections and loopholes need to be closedas inspections need to be imposed on all other WMD states as well. But U.S. efforts here are not aimed at making inspections effective, but at making them impossible.
7. Can Hussein fool the inspectors?
Maybe. But no inspectors at all are far easier to fool than some inspectors. As best anyone can tell, the inspectors in Iraq from 1991-1998 were far more effective at destroying WMD than was bombing, either during the Gulf War or in 1998.
One might ask, cant the U.S. fool inspectorscant India, Pakistan, China, Russia, France, and Israel? Dangerous WMD arsenals in each of these countries are not subject to inspections at all.
8. Can Saddam Hussein be deterred?
Suicide bombers or suicide pilots cannot be deterred. They have already chosen death. But Saddam Hussein has spent a lifetime trying to avoid death. In 1991 during the Gulf War, Hussein withheld use of his chemical weapons. We dont know if he was deterred by the U.S. (and Israeli) threats of disproportionate and massive retaliation or by the realization that using such weapons against coalition forces would guarantee a U.S. march on Baghdad, but either way, he was deterred.
Are there some circumstances in which Hussein would not be deterred? Yes, if he thought he was doomed anyway, he might decide to kill as many of his enemies as possible. So, ironically, the one circumstance most likely to elicit Husseins use of WMD is a war fought to depose Hussein in the name of nullifying his WMD.
9. Bush claims he does not need Security Council authorization to legally attack Iraq. Is this true?
No. The UN Charter prohibits nations from using or threatening force against other nations with only two exceptions.
First, Article 51 permits self- defense, but only when an armed attack occurs. Clearly, there has been no armed attack by Iraq against the United States. Some argue that self-defense includes the right to strike an enemy who is about to launch an attack. Clearly there is no basis for claiming that an Iraqi attack is imminent. If U.S. assertions that Iraq might have nuclear weapons by the end of the decade are taken as adequate grounds for allowing anticipatory self-defense, then Lebanon would have the right to attack Israel, and vice versa, and Pakistan would have the right to attack India, and vice versa, and just about any country would have the right to attack almost any other country.
The second exception to the Charters prohibition against the use or threat of force is action taken under the authority of Chapter VII. That is, the Security Council may, under Chapter VII, authorize the use of force in pursuit of international peace and security. So if the Security Council were to pass a resolution authorizing an attack on Iraq, that attack would be legal (which is not the same as just). But there has been no resolution authorizing an attack, as yet. In 1990, after all sorts of bribery and pressure from the United States, the Council authorized action in resolution 678 to expel Iraq from Kuwait. U.S. officials claim that this resolution is enough to legitimize U.S. military action against Iraq today, but that is preposterous. Resolution 678 authorized member states to use all necessary means to uphold and implement resolution 660 (1990) and all subsequent relevant resolutions. Resolution 660 called for Iraq to withdraw from Kuwait and the subsequent relevant resolutions are listed at the beginning of 678 and consist of the series of resolutions relating to Iraqs invasion of Kuwait passed between resolutions 660 (August 2) and 678 (November 29, 1990). U.S. officials maintain that all subsequent resolutions includes anything having to do with Iraq passed after August 2, 1990 and thus includes all the post-Gulf War resolutions relating to arms inspectors. Such a claim cannot be taken seriously. Resolutions dont authorize the use of force to uphold resolutions not yet passed. They dont authorize individual member states to determine for themselves whether Iraq is in compliance with any particular resolutions. Thats the responsibility of the Security Council.
After the Gulf War, resolution 687accepted by Iraqmandated the destruction of Iraqs weapons of mass destruction. But nothing in that resolution authorized any use of force or the right of any individual state to determine Iraqi compliance. If the U.S. view prevailed, then Israel, for example, could have legally attacked Iraq any time after November 1990, if it decided that Iraq wasnt complying with subsequent resolutions.
A final U.S. argument is that Iraq remains in violation of some 1990 resolutions relating to Kuwaiti prisoners and property and thus can still be brought to account under resolution 678. But at the March 2002 Arab League Summit, every Arab state, including Kuwait, signed an all-sided rapprochement with Iraq, including specific arrangements for the return of Kuwaits stolen National Archives and prisoner exchanges.
Thus there is no legal basis for a U.S. attack on Iraq without explicit Security Council authorization. We reiterate, however, that Security Council authorization determines legality, not morality.
10. Has Iraq violated many Security Council resolutions?
Yes. But it is not the only country to do so. Other countries, including close U.S. allies like Israel and Turkey, have been in violation of Security Council resolutions. Of course, the number of violations by U.S. allies would be far larger, if it were not for the fact that the Security Council has a totally undemocratic voting procedure that gives Washington (and four other nations) the power to veto any resolutions of which it disapproves. Still, that others violate UN resolutions is not a justification for Iraq to do so.
11. What are the likely consequences of a U.S.
attack on Iraq?
Administration officials assure us that the consequences will be positive. The Iraqi people will welcome their nearly bloodless deliverance and democracy will spread throughout the region. These are possible, but the first is by no means certain and the second extremely unlikely. Under some scenarios, Iraqi troops will refuse to fight and Saddam will be defeated swiftly. But one cannot exclude the possibility of intense urban fighting (with the U.S. using overwhelming air-power to obliterate all resistance), which would mean many civilian casualties. As for Middle Eastern democracy, the corrupt authoritarian regimes of the region will probably hold on to power by the imposition of greater repressionthat is, by becoming less rather than more democratic. If the threat to these regimes gets more serious, we can expect to see Washington increase its support for dictatorial rule, for theres no chance that the U.S. would tolerate a new government in Jordan or Egypt or Saudi Arabia that came to power by opposing the U.S. war in Iraq.
12. Are the claims of civilian deaths in Iraq, resulting from the sanctions, exaggerated?
There is debate both on the number of deaths in Iraq under the sanctions and the cause of those deaths. Save the Children UK and a coalition of other NGOs recently issued a report that summarizes the conflicting estimates: UNI- CEF, in a widely publicized study carried out jointly with the Iraq Ministry of Health, determined that 500,000 children under five years old had died in excess numbers in Iraq between 1991 and 1998, though UNICEF insisted that this number could not all be ascribed directly to sanctions. UNICEF used surveys of its own as part of the basic research and involved respected outside experts in designing the study and evaluating the data. UNICEF remains confident in the accuracy of its numbers and points out that they have never been subject to a scientific challenge.
Prof. Richard Garfield of Columbia University carried out a separate and well regarded study of excess mortality in Iraq.... Garfield concluded that there had been a minimum of 100,000 excess deaths and that the more likely number was 227,000. Garfield now thinks the most probable number of deaths of under-five children from August 1991 to June 2002 would be about 400,000.
Some supporters of the sanctions argue that any humanitarian suffering is a result not of the sanctions, but of Husseins manipulations of the sanctions regime. There is no doubt that Hussein bears some of the responsibility for the situation. However, as the Select Committee on International Development of the British House of Commons noted (1/27/00), this does not entirely excuse the international community from a part in the suffering of Iraqis. A sanctions regime which relies on the good faith of Saddam Hussein is fundamentally flawed.
13. Arent the sanctions essential to prevent Iraq from developing weapons of mass destruction?
Not if we are to believe the U.S. and British governments, which claim that Hussein has been able to rebuild his WMD programs by easily evading the sanctions.
Blocking weapons transfers and WMD components makes good senseand not just to Iraq. But the sanctions regime in Iraq blocks far more than military supplies. In July 2002, $5.4 billion worth of goods were being held up, almost always at the insistence of the United States or Britain, covering such supplies as water purification systems, sewage pipes, medicines, hospital equipment, electricity and communications infrastructure, and oil field equipment.
15. Do the American
people support a war against Iraq?
If asked do you support the United States preventing Iraq from killing you or your parents or your children, a considerable majority of Americans will certainly say yes.
If they are asked, should the United States attack Iraqa country it has already devastated for over a dozen years with hundreds of thousands of casualtiesin order to violently steal for ourselves direct control over the resources of another country, it is reasonable to guess that a majority of Americans would say no.
As we write, reports suggest that about 70 percent of the British population, by polls, oppose the war plans, despite the British government being the only one in the world solidly behind Bush. Two things seem to explain the British anti-war sentiment. One, the planes that crashed into buildings on 9-11 didnt do so in London. Two, Britain has a mass-circulation press that is conveying more actual truths and morally civilized reactions to the ongoing events than are being conveyed in the U.S. Reaction in the U.S. is behind, but is catching up.
16. Why does the U.S. government want to go to war against Iraq?
Because Iraqs leader is not in Washingtons hip pocket anymore, where he was, when Washington liked him quite a lot, while he was committing his worst crimes.
Because Iraq is the worlds second largest reserve of oil, which the U.S. government would like to control, particularly given the instability of Saudi subservience.
Because around the world, country after country, suffering the accumulating damage of corporate globalization, is being pressured by its population to extricate from the American Empires hold over their policies. Waging violent destruction on Iraq sends a message regarding just how high the price will be for extrication from U.S. domination.
Because anything remotely resembling a legal and moral approach to international problems is ridiculed and rejected by U.S. elites because legal and moral approaches to international problems would, in case after case, lead to outcomes contrary to their agendas and interests.
Because intense focus on Iraq is serviceable to Bush and Company seeking to divert attention from the U.S economy and corporate corruption leading up to the November U.S. elections; and the Administration is hoping to undermine social spending, which is strongly favored by the population, in the interest of tax cuts for the rich, which are strongly opposed by the population.
Michael Albert is sysop of ZNet and the author or numerous books, the latest being Parecon (Verso) and Trajectory of Change (South End Press); Stephen R. Shalom teaches political science at William Patterson, NJ. His latest book is Whose Side Are You On? (Longman).
Z Magazine Archive
AnnouncementsLABOR - May 1 is May Day. Workers of the world will celebrate the 124th anniversary of International Worker’s Day. Born out of a call for an 8-hour workday in the United States, this day is an opportunity for all workers to show their solidarity with one another, as well as to renew the call for labor rights.
FARM CONFERENCE - The Farm Conference on Community and Sustainability will be held May 24-26 in Summertown, TN, in partnership with the Fellowship of Intentional Communities. Tour green homes, see sustainable food production, learn about solar installations, alternative education, midwifery, and more.
Contact: Douglas@thefarmcommunity.com; http://www.thefarmcommunity.com/.
PALESTINE - The Conference of the Palestinian Shatat in North American will be held June 3-5 in Vancouver. The conference will examine the future of the Palestinian liberation movement.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.palestinianconference.org/.
LABOR - The Pacific Northwest Labor History Association’s 45th annual conference will be held May 3-5, in Portland, OR. This year’s theme is Labor Under Attack: Learning from the Past and Preparing for the Future. A call for presentations, workshops and papers is currently underway.
Contact: PNLHA, 27920 68th Ave. East, Graham, WA 98338; 206-406-2604; PNLHA1@aol.com; http://www3.telus.net.
MARIJUANA - On the first Saturday of May marijuana legalization activists will hold informational and educational events, rallies and marches in over 300 cities around the world.
ECONOMICS - The Union For Radical Political Economics will hold its 39th annual conference May 9-11 in New York City.
RECLAIM THE DREAM - The 2013 Poor People’s Campaign & March from Baltimore to Washington D.C. will be May 11. Communities, schools and unions interested in participating are encouraged to contact the Baltimore People’s Assembly.
Contact: 410-500-2168; 410-218-4835; BaltimorePeoplesAssembly@gmail.com; Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Baltimore and the Baltimore Peoples Power Assembly, 2011 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218.
MOTHER’S DAY - The 17th Annual Mother’s Day Walk For Peace will be May 12th, in Dorchester, MA. The walk began in 1996 for families who had lost children to violence. The day has become a way for thousands of people to financially support the work of the Louis Brown Peace Institute.
Contact: http://www.ldbpeaceinstitute.org/; http://mothersdaywalk4peace.org/.
NATO 5 - An International Week of Solidarity with the NATO 5 has been called for May 16-21. Supports call on supporters to raise awareness of the NATO 5 and support funds for the defendants on the one-year anniversary of their preemptive arrests.
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MOUNTAINTOP - The 2013 Mountain Justice Summer Activist Training Camp will be held May 19-27 in Damascus, VA. It will be a week of workshops, field trips to view Mountain Top Removal coal mines, direct actions, and service project.
FEMINIST SCI-FI - The feminist science fiction convention WisCon 37 is scheduled for May 24-27 in Madison, WI.
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ANARCHY FEST - A month-long Festival of Anarchy is scheduled for May in Montreal. The festival includes The Montreal Anarchist Bookfair (May 19-20).
Contact: http://www.anarchistbookfair.ca/; http://www.radicalmontreal.com/.
LABOR - The International Labor Rights Forum will present: Down the Supply Chain, Driving Corporate Accountability, on May 22 in Washington, DC. The Labor Rights Awards Ceremony and Reception will honor pioneers in supply chain worker organizing, working solidarity and international labor rights policy.
MULTICULTURE - The 26th annual National Conference on Race & Ethnicity in American Higher Education (NCORE) will take place May 28-June 1, in New Orleans.
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MEDIA - The 2013 Alliance for Community Media Annual Conference will be held May 29-31, in San Francisco, CA. Participants will include educators, community leaders, media professionals, journalists, nonprofit leaders, policymakers and students.
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BRADLEY MANNING - On June 1, a rally will be held at Fort Meade in support of Bradley Manning.
BIKES - Bikes Not Bombs is holding its 24th annual Bike-A-Thon and Green Roots Festival in Boston, MA on June 3, with several bike rides scheduled, music, exhibitors and more.
Contact: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory St., Jamaica Plain, MA 02130; 617-522-0222; email@example.com; www.bikesnotbombs.org.
LEFT FORUM - The 2013 Left Forum will be held June 7-9, at Pace University in New York City.
Contact: 365 Fifth Avenue, CUNY Graduated Center, ? Sociology Dept., New York, NY 10016; http://www.leftforum.org/.
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ADC CONFERENCE - The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) holds its annual conference June 13-16, in Washington, DC, with panel discussions and workshops on civil rights, media and other topics.
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CUBA/SOCIALISM - A Cuban-North American Dialog on Socialist Renewal and Global Capitalist Crisis will be held in Havana, Cuba, June 16-30. There will be a 5 day Seminar at University of Havana, plus visits to a cooperative, urban garden, community development project, social research centers, and educational & medical institutions.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.globaljusticecenter.org/.
NETROOTS - The 8th Annual Netroots Nation conference will take place June 20-23 in San Jose, CA. The event features panels, trainings, networking, screenings, and keynotes.
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MEDIA - The 15th annual Allied Media Conference will be held June 20-23, in Detroit.
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GRASSROOTS - The United We Stand Festival will be hosted by Free & Equal, June 22 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The festival aims to reform the electoral process throughout the U.S.
SOCIALISM - The Socialism 2013 Conference is scheduled for June 27-30 in Chicago, featuring talks and panel discussions.
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LITERACY - The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) will hold its conference July 12-13 in Los Angeles under the heading, Intersections: Teaching and Learning Across Media.
Contact: 10 Laurel Hill Drive, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003; http://namle.net/conference/.
IWW - The North American Work People’s College will take place July 12-16 at Mesaba Co-op Park in northern Minnesota. The event will bring together Wobblies from branches across the continent to learn new skills and build One Big Union.
PEACESTOCK - On July 13th, the 11th Annual Peacestock: A Gathering for Peace, will take place at Windbeam Farm in Hager City, WI. The event is a mixture of music, speakers and community for peace. Sponsored by Veterans for Peace.
Contact: Bill Habedank, 1913 Grandview Ave., Red Wing, MN 55066; 651-388-7733; email@example.com; http://www.peacestockvfp.org.
CHILDREN’S DEFENSE - July 15-19, join clergy, seminarians, Christian educators, young adult leaders and other faith-based advocates for children at CDF Haley Farm in Clinton, Tennessee, for five days of spiritual renewal, networking, movement building workshops, and continuing education about the urgent needs of children at the 19th annual Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.childrensdefense.org.
ACTIVIST CAMP - Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp will have sessions in July and August in Ben Lomond, CA; Portland, OR; Charlton, MA. YEA Camp is designed for activists 12-17 years old who want to make a difference in the world.
Contact: email@example.com; http://yeacamp.org/.
LA RAZA - The annual National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Conference is scheduled for July 18-19 in New Orleans, with workshops, presentations and panel discussions.
Contact: NCLR Headquarters Office, Raul Yzaguirre Building, 1126 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036; 202-785-1670; www.nclr.org.
LABOR - The Eastern Conference For Workplace Democracy: Growing Our Cooperatives, Growing Our Communities, will be held at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, July 26-28.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://east.usworker.coop/.
WOMEN/LYNNE STEWART- Radical Women is asking for support letters and cards to be sent to Lynne Stewart. Stewart is a civil rights attorney and political prisoner who is currently in jail. She has breast cancer and authorities have denied her request for transfer from her Texas prison to the New York City hospital where she received medical attention during a prior bout of breast cancer. Send messages and cards to: Lynne Stewart 53504-054, Federal Medical Center Carswell, P.O. Box 27137, Fort Worth, TX 76127.
Contact: 747 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109; 415-864-1278; RadicalWomenUS@gmail.com; http://lynnestewart.org/; http://www.radicalwomen.org/.
HAITI/WOMEN - Haiti’s government is considering a legal reform measure that would prohibit and punish all sexual assault, including marital rape. MADRE and the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict are launching a petition to raise international support for this push to address violence against women in Haiti.
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SYRIA/MIDDLE EAST - The Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) is currently seeking funds to assist more than 200,000 refugees fleeing violence in Syria.
FOLK FESTIVAL - The Falcon Ridge Folk Festival will be held August 2-4, in the Berkshires, NY.
Contact: http://www.falconridgefolk.com/; firstname.lastname@example.org.
WAR RESISTERS - The War Resisters League will hold its 90th anniversary conference, Revolutionary Nonviolence: Building Bridges Across Generations and Communities, August 1-4, at Georgetown University. The event will focus on the U.S.’ long history of antimilitarism.
Contact: 339 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012; 212-228-0450; email@example.com; http://www.warresisters.org.
POPULAR ECONOMICS - The Center for Popular Economics is holding its 2013 Summer Institute August 4-9 at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA. No background in economics is needed for this intensive training. This year’s theme is, The Care Economy: Building a Just Economy with a Heart.
Contact: Center for Popular Economics, PO Box 785 Amherst, MA 01004; 413-545-0743; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.populareconomics.org.
VETERANS - Veterans for Peace is holding the 28th annual convention August 6-11 in Madison, WI. This year’s theme is, Power To The Peaceful.
DEMOCRACY - The Democracy Convention will take place August 7-11 in Madison, WI. The convention brings together nine conferences including topics such as media, education, defense, race, environment and others.
MEN - The 38th National Conference on Men & Masculinity: Forging Justice: Creating Safe, Equal and Accountable Communities, presented in partnership with HAVEN, will be held in Detroit, MI, August 8-10.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.nomas.org/.
OCCUPY - An Occupy National Gathering will be held in Kalamazoo, MI, August 21-25.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://occupynationalgathering.net/.
COMMUNITIES - The Communities Conference is a networking and learning opportunity for co-operative or communal lifestyles, with workshops, events and entertainment; scheduled for August 30-September 2 at the Twin Oaks Community in Louisa, Virginia.
LABOR DAY - The 29th annual Bread and Roses Festival, a celebration of the ethnic diversity and labor history of Lawrence, MA, will be held September 2, in honor of the 1912 Bread and Roses Strike. There will be music, dance, poetry, drama, ethnic food, historical demonstrations, walking & trolley tours.
Contact: PO Box 1137, Lawrence, MA 01842; 978-794-1655; http://www.breadandrosesheritage.org/.
OCCUPY WALL STREET - September 17 is the two-year anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Events are planned in New York City and worldwide.
TEACHERS - The 13th Annual Conference, “Teaching for Social Justice: The Politics of Pedagogy,” will be held October 12 in San Francisco, CA. The free event features workshops, resources, and free childcare.
Contact: 415-676-7844; email@example.com; http://www.t4sj.org/.
HAITI - International Action, which brings clean water and chlorinators to Haiti, seeks office space capable of housing up to six people and their office equipment.
Contact: Zach Bremer, Zbrehmer@haitiwater.org; 202-488-0735; http://www.haitiwater.org/.
MEDIA - The Union for Democratic Communications and Project Censored are sponsoring a joint conference on media democracy, media activism and social justice to be held November 1-3 at the University of San Francisco. Proposals for presentations, workshops and panels from activists and critical scholars are invited.