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Open letter to World Social Forum on Occupation of Iraq

20. January 2005

by Int`l Action Center, USA

We appeal to the participants in the World Social Forum to endorse worldwide actions on March 19-20 to immediately end the criminal occupation of Iraq, to express solidarity with the courageous Iraqi resistance that has derailed the U.S. Empire, and to join in spirit and in deed to create a forum at the WSF for those in solidarity with the resistance.

ACTION: Should the WSF remain limited to talk of how to make “another world” possible? This undervalues the WSF´s potential. The Social Forums have already inspired action. The high point: the call out of Florence in November 2002 and its endorsement in January 2003 at the WSF in Porto Alegre. These led to millions taking the streets in January, February and March 2003. These actions built real solidarity between the workers and progressive people of the imperialist “North” and the billions of people of the global South in ways that mere words can never do.

MARCH 19-20: The next weekend of worldwide protests will be on the second anniversary of the illegal U.S. invasion. We invite participants of the WSF to endorse and carry out these actions to make this a truly worldwide weekend of struggle. In each country the organizations will choose their slogans. But we assert that: (1) the occupation is illegal and illegitimate, (2) the Iraqis have the right to resist occupation by whatever means necessary and (3) the world is indebted to the Iraqi resistance for derailing the U.S. war machine.

SOLIDARITY: Remember May 1, 2003, when George W. Bush declared “mission accomplished” on the deck of the USS Lincoln? The Pentagon´s tanks were aimed at Iran, Syria, North Korea (DPRK), and the borders of China.
Cuba, Venezuela and Colombia were in their sights. Solidarity against intervention and subversion is needed still in all these places. But the Pentagon now has to think long and hard before committing its ground troops. Why? The Iraqi resistance has tied down the U.S. military. U.S.
youth avoid the Armed Forces. Sergeants no longer re-enlist. There is a near-rebellion in the ranks. More aggressions could deepen their crisis.

SELF-DETERMINATION: There are different forces in the Iraqi resistance.
They have different ideologies and goals, but they all want the U.S. and all other foreign occupation troops out of Iraq. Solidarity with the resistance means simply solidarity with its struggle to drive out the occupation forces. Neither Washington nor Brussels should decide Iraq´s future, nor even the anti-war movement or the WSF. The Iraqis will decide. That is self-determination.

HEAR THE RESISTANCE: Representatives of some Iraqi resistance forces will be at the WSF. One has signed a call asking for a big plenary session in support of the Iraqi resistance in the light of the March 19 demonstrations. We endorse this proposal. It can counter the falsehoods about the Iraq war, from the lies about 9/11 and the “weapons of mass destruction” to the crimes at Abu Ghraib and the assault on Falluja, to the goals of the resistance itself.

International Action Center (USA – founded by Ramsey Clark)
The Out Now Coalition has called a demonstration for March 19 in New York, the very city where the attack on the World Trade Center on Sept.
11, 2001, was seized on by the Bush administration to justify endless preemptive wars. The demands are:
Bring the troops home now!
End the occupation of Iraq!
Money for jobs, healthcare, schools & housing – not war!
Hands off Social Security!
The protest aims to retake Central Park, banned during last summer´s Republican National Convention. The call has received strong support from trade unions and from the African American and Latino communities in the city. Other major actions that day focus on a military base near Fayetteville, North Carolina, and in California.

IAC – 39 W. 14 Street, New York, NY 10011 USA 212-633-6646