The destruction of the World Trade Center, and the attack on the Pentagon, is being used to fan anti-Arab racism and a war that U.S. government says could be decades long. We call on all activists in the peace, justice, and anti-intervention movements to resist this right-wing tide.
U.S. War will not change the situation
We share the grief of the relatives and friends of the victims of the attack. Killing more civilians will not bring those people back. Those who carried out this action considered the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, political targets. Its effect was to target mostly working people who have very little control over government policies. In the immediate term, this action will embolden U.S imperialism in its quest for political and economic control over South Asia and the Middle East. The government would like to use the events of 9/11 to attack every country and political movement that opposes U.S. policy throughout the world. This will only cause the tragedy of the 6,300 people killed to be compounded a hundred-fold.
The anti-war movement must answer the question of "why?"
While George Bush with the help of the U.S. media are beating the drums of war, many people are asking why this event happened. We must give a clear and coherent answer. U.S. foreign policy around the world created a climate that caused these events. Latin America is a checkerboard of U.S. supported death squads, particularly in Colombia. Israel is carrying out assassinations with U.S. political backing and dollars, and one and a half million people have been killed by sanctions in Iraq and 2.5 million people dead in the Congo in a U.S. inspired civil war. The shock and anger that people in the U.S. felt on September 11th is the same emotion that is felt by the mothers of Iraq, when their children die of U.S. enforced starvation or peasants fumigated off their land by U.S. Blackhawk helicopters in Colombia.
Oppose U.S. War Against Afghanistan and the Middle East
The U.S. is going to war against the people of Afghanistan.They are doing this without bothering to prove the guilt of Osama Bin Laden and despite the fact that his organization is not the government of Afghanistan. Afghani civilians will suffer most from this war.
Bush has said that the attack on Afghanistan is only the beginning of this so-called war on terrorism. Iraq will likely be the next target of attacks, not because it is a terrorist state but because the U.S. has wanted to overthrow the government of Iraq for some time. We need to oppose that war and every other U.S. war around the world.
Bush cannot bring anyone to justice
We need to be clear as a movement that the U.S. government has no moral high ground to be the judge, jury, and executioner to those who committed the attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. The truth is most weeks around the world the United States is responsible for the deaths of many more people than perished in the September 11th attack.
If the working people of this country were in charge, we could control how the people who committed the attack would be brought to justice. Unfortunately, that is not the case. The U.S. government has no respect for the lives of people who had nothing to do with the attack, but happen to live in the same country as those people who may have done it. If we have as part of our slogans that the perpetrators should be brought to justice, it only strengthens the war machine.
Oppose Racism and Anti-Arab violence
Everyday there have been attacks on people of Arab and South-Asian decent and of the Muslim faith. There have been violent attacks on Mosques, and racist discrimination by airlines. The FBI has detained over 800 people in relationship to an event which was probably carried out by very few. The peace movement must resolutely stand with our Arab sisters and brothers in opposing all racist attacks. We must oppose all attempts to approve the use of racial profiling in seeking out so-called terrorists.
Now is a time for action not sitting on the sidelines
We favor an active response to any measures taken by the U.S. government. The peace, justice, and anti-intervention movements are facing a great challenge. It is vital that we speak out against racism, national chauvinism, any repressive measures the U.S. government might undertake at home to undermine our right to organize, protest and struggle for justice, and all attacks against countries or forces outside of the U.S.
The ruling class will use calls for national unity against all the struggles for justice in this country. We must not let them succeed. Last week the government gave 15 billion dollars to bail out the airlines and not a dime to aid the working people who lost their livelihoods because of the attack. Bush/Ashcroft are pushing for new legislation to fight terrorism which will make wide use of wire taps and electronic spying easier and wash away basic civil liberties including the rights of non-citizens to due process under the constitution. We must not succumb to an atmosphere of McCarthyism in the name of fighting terrorism.
Over the past ten years many of us in the anti-intervention movement have stood shoulder to shoulder in the face of U.S. attacks and wars against Iraq, Sudan, Colombia, and Yugoslavia. The U.S. war machine is now going into hyper-drive. The tasks ahead of us are clear. The Bush administration is planning war. We must do everything in our power to stop them. We must make it clear that violence and harassment directed at the Arab and Muslim communities will not be tolerated. Everything possible must be done to beat back these attacks.
Freedom Road Socialist Organization
P.O. Box 582564
Minneapolis MN 55440