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|Americans "Pledge of Resistance" agianst U.S Gov.|
|10/09/02 at 02:14:28|
|IN HIS NAME, THE MOST HIGH |
[color=darkgreen]American Nationwide "Pledge of Resistance" Against U.S. Government Aggressions
By Neveen A. Salem, IOL Washington Correspondent:
By 9:30 A.M. Sunday morning, thousands of civil rights supporters, anti-war activists and famous personalities had gathered on the East Meadow of New York's famous Central Park to send a unified and clear message to U.S. President George W. Bush.
"The order of the day is to tell our leaders that they can no longer bomb, kill and destroy the lives of innocent people in our name," Suhaila Suroor a dentist and mother of two told IslamOnline as she watched her two children play on the lawn of New York's most famous land mass.
Each child was wearing a shirt that sent a message: "Palestinian Lives are Just as Valuable as Yours" and "Iraqis Are Not U.S. Scapegoats", Suhaila was holding a banner that read "U.S. Civil Rights = U.S. Police State."
The massive rally has been set to voice strong American protest to aggressions against Iraq, Palestine, and American Muslims, Arabs and Asians and has been in the works for almost a year. The day was specifically chosen as it marks the one-year anniversary of the U.S. offensive on Afghanistan.
The nationwide movement will see hundreds of thousands of Americans in New York, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Los Angeles and San Francisco (California), Corvalis, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington taking a "Pledge of Resistance" against government repression both internationally and domestically and to defend the civil rights of American Arabs and Muslims.
"This will be a stand against the government roundup and secret detention of immigrants, the racial-profiling and hate-mongering against Muslims and people from the Middle East and South Asia, and the massive deportations," the pledge reads.
The event has at least 16,000 supporters from all walks of American life and religions, including former Arab-American U.S. Senator James Abourezk (who also founded the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in Washington D.C.), legendary Hollywood writer, producer and director Oliver Stone (of "Evita", "JFK" and "Born on the Fourth of July fame).
Also, academician and author Noam Chomsky, civil rights lawyer and professor at Georgetown University David Cole, actor Ed Asner, former Secretary of State Ramsey Clark, Ben Cohen (co-founder of Ben and Jerry' ice cream), singer and songwriter Ani DeFranco, author Janet Abu Loghud, and famous feminist Gloria Steinem.
The event was arranged by the "Not in My Name" (NIMN), a Jewish peace group based in Evanston, Illinois that was formed in November 2000, a month after the current Palestinian Intifada, to work for a lasting peace for Palestinians and Isr**lis.
"We believe that the first step toward attaining peace must be for Isr**l to end its occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem," a member of the group told IslamOnline, reciting the pledge on the group's site.
" We call ourselves 'Not in My Name' because we feel that the State of Isr**l often claims to act in the name and interests of world Jews, but that these actions do not reflect our Jewish values and beliefs," the statement continued.
New York City police officers told IslamOnline that they are anticipating tens of thousands of people, although they have no doubts the numbers may swell to significantly more. They also said they expected the rally to be peaceful.
Many protestors and organizers were busy setting up the display tables that would host many of the organizational co-sponsors of the event and would serve as bases for literature on everything from immigration laws to statistics of Palestinian deaths as a result of Isr**li aggressions and Iraqi deaths as a result of U.S. bombings and twelve-year-long sanctions.
The event succeeds Friday's anti-war rally, also held in New York and precedes the international rally scheduled for October 26. Billed the "National March to Stop the War Against Iraq", the event will take place across the United States in New York, California and Washington D.C., as well as seeing supporting rallies taking place internationally.
"Not in My Name" is also hosting Jeff Halper of the Isr**li Committee Against House Demolitions and Salim Shawamreh, a Palestinian peace activist whose home was razed three times by U.S.-made Isr**li bulldozers, on their annual U.S. tour comprised of speaking engagements educated the American public of atrocities being committed against the Palestinian people.
The rally's mission statement was also being circulated en masse on the Central Park grounds and even across town in Subway stations and on street corners as a way to spread the word to New Yorkers going about their days.
The statement reads in part as follows:
"The signers of this statement call on the people of the U.S. to resist the policies and overall political direction that have emerged since September 11, 2001, and which pose grave dangers to the people of the world.
"We believe that peoples and nations have the right to determine their own destiny, free from military coercion by great powers. We believe that all persons detained or prosecuted by the United States government should have the same rights of due process. We believe that questioning, criticism, and dissent must be valued and protected. We understand that such rights and values are always contested and must be fought for.
"We believe that people of conscience must take responsibility for what their own governments do -- we must first of all oppose the injustice that is done in our own name. Thus we call on all Americans to RESIST the war and repression that has been loosed on the world by the Bush administration. It is unjust, immoral, and illegitimate.
"In our name, within the U.S., the government has created two classes of people: those to whom the basic rights of the U.S. legal system are at least promised, and those who now seem to have no rights at all. The government rounded up over 1,000 immigrants and detained them in secret and indefinitely. Hundreds have been deported and hundreds of others still languish today in prison. This smacks of the infamous concentration camps for Japanese-Americans in World War 2. For the first time in decades, immigration procedures single out certain nationalities for unequal treatment.
"President Bush has declared: 'you're either with us or against us.' Here is our answer: We refuse to allow you to speak for all the American people. We will not give up our right to question. We will not hand over our consciences in return for a hollow promise of safety. We say NOT IN OUR NAME. We refuse to be party to these wars and we repudiate any inference that they are being waged in our name or for our welfare. We extend a hand to those around the world suffering from these policies; we will show our solidarity in word and deed.
"We who sign this statement call on all Americans to join together to rise to this challenge. We applaud and support the questioning and protest now going on, even as we recognize the need for much, much more to actually stop this juggernaut. We draw inspiration from the Isr**li reservists who, at great personal risk, declare "there IS a limit" and refuse to serve in the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.
"Let us not allow the watching world today to despair of our silence and our failure to act. Instead, let the world hear our pledge: we will resist the machinery of war and repression and rally others to do everything possible to stop it. [/color]
[color=red][Edited by Moderator][/color]
|10/09/02 at 04:05:07|
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