Deepen the Struggle to Defund the War

The anti-war movement has relearned some valuable lessons. It is incredibly hard to stop a war once plans are in place. And once a war starts, it can take years to slowly change the tide of public opinion. The anti-war movement has also learned that it can’t influence Bush directly. Trapped in his own logic of war, his regime is isolated and not listening to any other opinions — even from his own Iraq Study Group.

Fund the Dream, Not the War

Now is the time to force Congress to be the check and balance on Bush’s reckless decisions. On the Monday after the demonstration, go and visit your member of Congress. But don’t just stop with that. Organize letter-writing campaigns, petitions in your community. The local anti-war coalition in Sacramento, CA has occupied their US Representative’s office for over a week and gained national attention. The Democrats rode the wave of anti-war sentiment growing across the country into power, now is the time to ratchet up the pressure and force them to act.

Our demands should be firmly on cutting the funding for the war. Those billions of dollars need to be redirected to building this country’s infrastructure (bridges, highways, sewer systems, etc.), instituting a universal health care plan, funding quality education curriculum and providing affordable housing to all citizens. Those billions could fund an immediate increase in the federal minimum wage instead of a phase-in that still will leave many working families in poverty. If we weren’t fighting an unjust war at $8 billion a month, we could really support victims of the Katrina tragedy and other national disasters. These are our tax dollars being used to fight what truly has become “Bush’s War.” Congress controls the purse strings to Bush’s plans. Bush has only a few more months of funds for the occupation of Iraq, and Bush will be going back to Congress for more funding this spring.

Continued Strategic and Visible Opposition

Marches help to galvanize us all, but our activity can’t be constrained to sporadic yearly demonstrations. There needs to be constant monthly activity. The anti-war movement needs to create a growing sense of turmoil and unrest across the country. There needs to be a constant reminder to people in our communities that the war continues and that people have the power to stop it. Pick one day every month, and organize teach-ins, movie showings, pickets or any visible anti-war presence, and stick to it. Even conversations with your neighbors and co-workers help.

The tide of public opinion is turning. There is no one in this country who does not have an opinion about the occupation of Iraq. Yet many people do not have a means to express their concerns and frustration. Every piece of art and culture helps to create a constant reminder of the war. The fact that so many ordinary people and even ruling-class individuals and institutions want the US to leave Iraq doesn’t mean that conscious activists who oppose our country’s bullying and terrorizing the rest of the world don’t have our work to do or that educational work and mass discussion aren’t needed.

Continue to Fight Anti-Arab Racism

Equally important, we all have a responsibility to combat anti-Arab racism in any form. Some of the public disgust at the occupation is linked up to American chauvinism and isolationism, that all of the problems in Iraq are “crazy Muslims killing each other.” We need to make sure that the summation of the US’s leaving Iraq isn’t “because Iraqis messed up and wouldn’t take responsibility.” The destruction in Iraq today flows from our country’s historic role in dominating other countries’ natural resources, economies and labor resources and in hand-picking leaders who will support that domination. That is the reason why the US military went into Iraq, and until we, the people, say that we don’t want our country doing these things, soldiers will be dying for no good reason and the world will continue to hate the US.

Counter the Bush Agenda

It will be very hard for Bush to escalate the forces in Iraq for long periods of time, much less begin military actions against Iran, without further recruitment of military personnel. Counter-recruitment needs to continue. If Bush wants 21,500 more soldiers, let’s get 21,500 more people turning away from military service. For those who are military resisters, we need to listen to Lt. Watada, the first officer to actively resist the war, and actively support anti-war resisters politically and financially. Active-duty soldiers, veterans and military families need to continue to be at the forefront of the anti-war movement. The petition for redress that is being led by Iraq Veterans Against the War to be delivered to Congress needs to be supported as well.

The People Have the Power!

January 27th is a good time for the anti-war movement to reflect on the gains that we have made so far. After years of organizing, the neo-cons were soundly defeated in November. We can and should take credit for the heightened activity in Congress over the past few weeks. There are no less than six different pieces of legislation that have been introduced about the “surge” and the funding for the war. The Democrats are not our friends, but they can be influenced. Congress would not even take these baby steps if it weren’t for the constant and growing mass activity of the anti-war movement. Take a moment to reflect, and to mourn, and than continue on struggling to end this war.

download a printable PDF of this document


The anti-war movement has relearned some valuable lessons. It is incredibly hard to stop a war once plans are in place. And once a war starts, it can take years to slowly change the tide of public opinion. The anti-war movement has also learned that it can’t influence Bush directly. Trapped in his own logic of war, his regime is isolated and not listening to any other opinions — even from his own Iraq Study Group.

Fund the Dream, Not the War

Now is the time to force Congress to be the check and balance on Bush’s reckless decisions. On the Monday after the demonstration, go and visit your member of Congress. But don’t just stop with that. Organize letter-writing campaigns, petitions in your community. The local anti-war coalition in Sacramento, CA has occupied their US Representative’s office for over a week and gained national attention. The Democrats rode the wave of anti-war sentiment growing across the country into power, now is the time to ratchet up the pressure and force them to act.

Our demands should be firmly on cutting the funding for the war. Those billions of dollars need to be redirected to building this country’s infrastructure (bridges, highways, sewer systems, etc.), instituting a universal health care plan, funding quality education curriculum and providing affordable housing to all citizens. Those billions could fund an immediate increase in the federal minimum wage instead of a phase-in that still will leave many working families in poverty. If we weren’t fighting an unjust war at $8 billion a month, we could really support victims of the Katrina tragedy and other national disasters. These are our tax dollars being used to fight what truly has become “Bush’s War.” Congress controls the purse strings to Bush’s plans. Bush has only a few more months of funds for the occupation of Iraq, and Bush will be going back to Congress for more funding this spring.

Continued Strategic and Visible Opposition

Marches help to galvanize us all, but our activity can’t be constrained to sporadic yearly demonstrations. There needs to be constant monthly activity. The anti-war movement needs to create a growing sense of turmoil and unrest across the country. There needs to be a constant reminder to people in our communities that the war continues and that people have the power to stop it. Pick one day every month, and organize teach-ins, movie showings, pickets or any visible anti-war presence, and stick to it. Even conversations with your neighbors and co-workers help.

The tide of public opinion is turning. There is no one in this country who does not have an opinion about the occupation of Iraq. Yet many people do not have a means to express their concerns and frustration. Every piece of art and culture helps to create a constant reminder of the war. The fact that so many ordinary people and even ruling-class individuals and institutions want the US to leave Iraq doesn’t mean that conscious activists who oppose our country’s bullying and terrorizing the rest of the world don’t have our work to do or that educational work and mass discussion aren’t needed.

Continue to Fight Anti-Arab Racism

Equally important, we all have a responsibility to combat anti-Arab racism in any form. Some of the public disgust at the occupation is linked up to American chauvinism and isolationism, that all of the problems in Iraq are “crazy Muslims killing each other.” We need to make sure that the summation of the US’s leaving Iraq isn’t “because Iraqis messed up and wouldn’t take responsibility.” The destruction in Iraq today flows from our country’s historic role in dominating other countries’ natural resources, economies and labor resources and in hand-picking leaders who will support that domination. That is the reason why the US military went into Iraq, and until we, the people, say that we don’t want our country doing these things, soldiers will be dying for no good reason and the world will continue to hate the US.

Counter the Bush Agenda

It will be very hard for Bush to escalate the forces in Iraq for long periods of time, much less begin military actions against Iran, without further recruitment of military personnel. Counter-recruitment needs to continue. If Bush wants 21,500 more soldiers, let’s get 21,500 more people turning away from military service. For those who are military resisters, we need to listen to Lt. Watada, the first officer to actively resist the war, and actively support anti-war resisters politically and financially. Active-duty soldiers, veterans and military families need to continue to be at the forefront of the anti-war movement. The petition for redress that is being led by Iraq Veterans Against the War to be delivered to Congress needs to be supported as well.

The People Have the Power!

January 27th is a good time for the anti-war movement to reflect on the gains that we have made so far. After years of organizing, the neo-cons were soundly defeated in November. We can and should take credit for the heightened activity in Congress over the past few weeks. There are no less than six different pieces of legislation that have been introduced about the “surge” and the funding for the war. The Democrats are not our friends, but they can be influenced. Congress would not even take these baby steps if it weren’t for the constant and growing mass activity of the anti-war movement. Take a moment to reflect, and to mourn, and than continue on struggling to end this war.

download a printable PDF of this document
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