• Monthly
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $other
  • use PayPal

ONE WEEK TO DOUBLE YOUR DONATION!

A generous supporter has offered a $25,000 matching grant. So for this week only, whatever you can donate will be doubled up to $25,000! If you have the means, please donate! If you already have done so, thank you for your support. All contributions are tax-deductible.
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Why We Protested at Obama’s Speech

On Sunday, February 11th, a group of antiwar students turned out to challenge Barack Obama’s position on Iraq as he held a rally at the UIC Pavilion to kick-start his campaign.

Approximately two dozen antiwar activists from UIC, Northeastern Illinois University and Northwestern University turned out among the crowd of 7,000 Obama supporters to send the message that “antiwar” candidates do not vote to fund war.

The protest included members of the Campus Antiwar Network, Students for Social Justice, the Campus Greens and the International Socialist Organization; many of whom have signed onto the following statement regarding that day’s action:

Currently, Barack Obama is positioning himself as the presidential candidate with antiwar promises; however, he does not stand for immediately removing the troops from Iraq. His plan for redeployment in March 2008 is based on the Iraqi government meeting specific timetables and benchmarks. Given the current situation in Iraqi and the illegitimacy of the U.S. backed Iraqi – timetables and benchmarks are false hopes.

Sixty percent of the U.S. population believes that invading Iraq was wrong and 40% believe we should deny funding for it now. Therefore, we feel it is only fair to demand from Obama antiwar action now — especially given his position as a U.S. Senator.

During the rally, Obama repeated that the war was not authorized in the first place, which brought enthusiastic applause from the crowd, and he critiqued the position of candidates like Sen. Hillary Clinton. While the crowd cheered Obama for talking about the need for healthcare reform within the country we took the opportunity to unfurl an antiwar banner that read “Obama: Stand up! Cut the funding!” and began chanting “Cut the war funding–bring the troops home.” Some in the crowd initially reacted positively; but Obama tried to hush our chant stating, “We’ll get to that later.”

We believe that the lack of funding for healthcare in this country (as witnessed in the recent proposed cuts for Cook County Hospitals) has a direct relation to the war in Iraq that is chewing up $2 billion per week. If we are going to talk about the lack of / cuts to public services we have to talk about the war in Iraq; the two issues are bound together.

Many have felt that we interrupted the rally one to many times. Our plan was to drop the banner and chant once during a pause to make our presence noticed — which we did. But because we were being roughed up and “escorted” out of the pavilion by security we felt it necessary to again make our point. It was then that we started a second chant; “No justice, no peace–U.S. out of the Middle East.”

Later in his speech, Obama acknowledged our concerns. “I’m glad they were there,” he told the crowd. “They feel a sense of urgency about a war that should have never been authorized and a war that should have never been fought.” But Obama added that he doesn’t want to cut funding for the war. “We need to bring this war to an end,” he said, “but we need to do it in a way that makes our troops safe.” In reality, the longer the troops stay in Iraq – the more unsafe they are.

Our action during Obama’s rally was is not an isolated incident. Over the past few weeks there has been a wave on sit-ins at the offices of Representatives and Senators. At the beginning of the month Obama and Dick Durbin’s Washington offices became the subject of a sit-in organized by the Occupation Project. At the sit-in four people were arrested in each office as protestors read off names of dead Iraqis and U.S. Soldiers. In Los Angeles at the Pacific Palisades Democratic Club, Rep. Henry Waxman [D] was confronted by a banner reading “Liberals do not fund occupation.” It is in this spirit of antiwar protest that we preceded. We feel that it is our responsibility as an antiwar movement to hold each elected representative who continues to vote for funding this war responsible for the loss of both Iraqi and U.S. lives under this occupation.

Bring the troops home, not in March 2009, not in March 2008, but NOW!

Lauren Fleer

Drew Heiserman

Bob Quellos

Graham Shaw

Orlando Sepulveda

Raquel Vega

Nadia Sol

Ireri Unzuerta Carrasco

 

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
October 15, 2019
Victor Grossman
The Berlin Wall, Thirty Years Later
Raouf Halaby
Kurdish Massacres: One of Britain’s Many Original Sins
Robert Fisk
Trump and Erdogan have Much in Common – and the Kurds will be the Tragic Victims of Their Idiocy
Ron Jacobs
Betrayal in the Levant
Wilma Salgado
Ecuador: Lenin Moreno’s Government Sacrifices the Poor to Satisfy the IMF
Ralph Nader
The Congress Has to Draw the Line
William A. Cohn
The Don Fought the Law…
John W. Whitehead
One Man Against the Monster: John Lennon vs. the Deep State
Lara Merling – Leo Baunach
Sovereign Debt Restructuring: Not Falling Prey to Vultures
Norman Solomon
The More Joe Biden Stumbles, the More Corporate Democrats Freak Out
Jim Britell
The Problem With Partnerships and Roundtables
Howard Lisnoff
More Incitement to Violence by Trump’s Fellow Travelers
Binoy Kampmark
University Woes: the Managerial Class Gets Uppity
Joe Emersberger
Media Smears, Political Persecution Set the Stage for Austerity and the Backlash Against It in Ecuador
Thomas Mountain
Ethiopia’s Abiy Ahmed Wins Nobel Peace Prize, But It Takes Two to Make Peace
Wim Laven
Citizens Must Remove Trump From Office
October 14, 2019
Ann Robertson - Bill Leumer
Class Struggle is Still the Issue
Mike Miller
Global Climate Strike: From Protest To Power?
Patrick Cockburn
As Turkey Prepares to Slice Through Syria, the US has Cleared a New Breeding Ground for Isis
John Feffer
Trump’s Undeclared State of Emergency
Dean Baker
The Economics and Politics of Financial Transactions Taxes and Wealth Taxes
Jonah Raskin
What Evil Empire?
Nino Pagliccia
The Apotheosis of Emperors
Evaggelos Vallianatos
A Passion for Writing
Basav Sen
The Oil Despots
Brett Wilkins
‘No Friend But the Mountains’: A History of US Betrayal of the Kurds
John Kendall Hawkins
Assange: Enema of the State
Scott Owen
Truth, Justice and Life
Thomas Knapp
“The Grid” is the Problem, Not the Solution
Rob Kall
Republicans Are Going to Remove Trump Soon
Cesar Chelala
Lebanon, Dreamland
Weekend Edition
October 11, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Becky Grant
CounterPunch in Peril?
Anthony DiMaggio
Fake News in Trump’s America
Andrew Levine
Trump’s End Days
Jeffrey St. Clair
High Plains Grifter: the Life and Crimes of George W. Bush
Patrick Cockburn
Kurdish Fighters Always Feared Trump Would be a Treacherous Ally
Paul Street
On the TrumpenLeft and False Equivalence
Dave Lindorff
Sure Trump is ‘Betraying the Kurds!’ But What’s New about That?
Rob Urie
Democrats Impeach Joe Biden, Fiddle as the Planet Burns
Sam Pizzigati
Inequality is Literally Killing Us
Jill Richardson
What Life on the Margins Feels Like
Mitchell Zimmerman
IMPOTUS: Droit de seigneur at Mar-a-Lago
Robert Hunziker
Methane SOS
Lawrence Davidson
Donald Trump, the Christian Warrior
William Hartung – Mandy Smithburger
The Pentagon is Pledging to Reform Itself, Again. It Won’t.
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail