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UFPJ CALL TO ACTION ON CONGRESSIONAL SUPPLEMENTAL VOTE
CALL TO ACTION ON CONGRESSIONAL SUPPLEMENTAL VOTE
We have reached another defining moment in the movement to end the U.S. war in Iraq and global drive for empire. We must continue to do everything in our power to stop the current Iraq War Supplemental no matter how hard the Democratic Party leadership might try to present it as a way to end the war in Iraq.
We need to demonstrate to those elected to represent us that there will be consequences for their continued support for the war... Most immediately, we need to thwart the Senate's effort to pass their version of a war supplemental. And we must be prepared to escalate as both houses of Congress move towards a final vote, most likely in mid-April.
The UFPJ Nonviolent Direct Action Working Group, a network of diverse member groups of UFPJ, proposes a set of escalating activities around the supplemental vote process unfolding in Congress. Below are some fresh and easy ideas for how to respond in the coming days and weeks. These actions are designed to help communicate the true cost of the war and to begin to broaden our focus as we engage new people and increase our creative resistance and commitment to shutting down the war machine if the Congress won’t. The Legislative Working Group of UFPJ is also developing new ideas to build on the work they've been doing and we look forward to having these two working groups share ideas and work together.
I. Post House Supplemental Funding Vote Action, Tuesday, March 27, 2007
We thank those 8 Congressional Leaders who demonstrated courage in honoring the democratic process and the will of the people by voting against any more funding of the war.
For those Representatives who voted for more funding, we need to remind them about the true costs of this war and occupation. Even with benchmarks and withdrawal dates, billions of more tax dollars will be fueling the death of hundreds, if not thousands, of sons and daughters, fathers and mothers and brothers and sisters.
If we truly want to end this war, then let us remember the true cost. The UFPJ-NVDA Working Group is urging all of you to contact your elected representatives. If they supported funding for more war, then let them know the true cost. We are asking as many of you as possible to do the following:
On Tues, March 27 - Let Them Hear the Cost of War All Day Long
· Read the Names of the dead on the phone or in person in the office of your representative. You could do this for 5 minutes or be prepared to stay until all of the names have been read. This could include U.S. and Iraqis killed or people from your community or state. You might consider people taking shifts to keep reading or organizing call in times. A different person every half hour. One group has been in their reps' office for 54 days now. Perhaps you will email or fax the list as well. They may hang up on you, but keep trying…but let us make this a day for them to remember the true cost of war.
- Call the Congressional switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask to be connected to their office. Toll free number: 866-340-9281.
- List of all US casualties: http://www.icasualties.org/oif/US_NAMES.aspx
- List of US casualties by State: http://www.icasualties.org/oif/Statecity.aspx
- List of Iraqi casualties: http://www.iraqbodycount.org/names.php
· Deliver the “Certificate of Ownership” for the war that has been developed by Military Families Speak Out, IVAW and Veterans for Peace. This could be brought in by yourself or a delegation. It could be faxed or emailed as well. To download certificate: www.mfso.org
II. Senate Supplemental Funding Vote, Week of March 26-29th
Organize Call-in’s from Public Places - before the vote - to your Senators' Offices. Places like gas stations, parks, city halls, schools or places that fly flags. Request that they fly the flag at half mast if the funding is approved You could set up tables (or ironing boards) for calls, sign-up sheets, fliers and perhaps, like one group did, do constituent interviews on tape that can be delivered to your Representative's office.
Lower Flags in Public Places to Half Mast – after the vote. This could be done late at night or early in the morning or it could be done publicly as an act of civil disobedience at your Senator’s office or local Federal Building.
III. Congressional Recess, April 2-9
During the recess most members of Congress are in their home districts. The UFPJ Legislative Working Group and the Occupation Project are calling for District office visits during the recess to tell them to vote against any additional funds for the Iraq war. It is quite likely that the House and the Senate will have passed their own different supplemental spending bills to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sometime in April, a conference committee of the House and Senate will put together a final version of the bill, which will go back for votes in both the House and the Senate. Now is the time to start planning creative actions. Visit UFPJ http://www.unitedforpeace.org/article.php?id=3116 and the Occupation Project http://vcnv.org/project/the-occupation-project
IV. Final Conference Vote, could occur in mid April
· National Day of Action for Climate Justice, Sat. April 14th, Step It Up Campaign – in solidarity with this global day of action, which UFPJ has already endorsed, we are calling on anti-war activists to organize protests and creative non-violent actions at gas stations across the country. Some ideas might be to hold a rally, perform street theater, leaflet motorists, have call-ins, host a teach-in on bicycle maintenance, put up signs, chalk the driveways. It is a great time to make the connections between war, oil and climate justice and that we are all entrapped in a bad system! http://www.stepitup2007.org/
(This is also a big day of action in Chicago for the Coalition of Immokalee Workers McDonald’s Truth Tour and there is also an IMF-World Bank meeting in DC!)
· Tax Day Actions, Tuesday, April 17th – Many local groups often have actions on Tax Day that highlight the excessive spending on the military and war. This year Occupation Project is also calling for a coordinated day of civil disobedience to end funding of the Iraq war. We recommend that you look at the excellent analysis and fact sheet which the War Resisters' League produces every year - "Where your income tax money really goes" http://warresisters.org/piechart.htm ..
The UFPJ-NVDA networking group is discussing numerous ideas and more info will be coming soon!
As groups committed to ending war and building global justice, we can and should continue to pressure Congress. But whatever the result, in the weeks and months ahead we must also be prepared to put more pressure on the infrastructure that allows this war to be fought. Whether it is a congressional office or a recruiting center, a gas station or a port, a college campus or a corporate office, let us strengthen our resolve to directly confront the pillars of war as we build a direct democracy movement that uses people power to end the war.
To join the UFPJ-NVDA working group list go to:
For More Information, Resources etc…
United for Peace And Justice
Voices for Creative Nonviolence
Declaration of Peace
National Campaign Nonviolent Resistance
Don't Buy Bushes War
Oil Theft Law and Chevron Campaign
Direct Action Organizing resources
National Day for Climate Action
Mobilization for Farmworker Justice
Latin America Solidarity Conference