Evaluation of the April 9 & 10 demonstrations with pictures and video
The antiwar movement is back in the streets. Thousands marches in New York on April 9 and April 10 in San Francisco. These demonstrations represented an important step forward for UNAC and the antiwar movement as a whole. The antiwar movement has been in a lull since before the election of Barak Obama as many hoped the change in administration would mean an end to the wars. We are now in a rebuilding phase and UNAC has made it clear that the rebuilding of a new antiwar movement is our goal. The new antiwar movement needs to oppose the US foreign wars but also defend the domestic victims of the “war on terror,” the Muslims who are being attacked. It must connect to dots between the money spent on war and the attacks on unions and cuts to education and needed programs. It must also stand for justice for Palestine. This is what these demonstration on April 9 and 10 did.
Major gains were made in bringing together the antiwar movement and important section of the Muslim community who are ready to come out in opposition to war and to Islamophobia. The large number of Muslims who were present including the leadership of the Muslim community in New York said to the world, Muslims are for peace not terror and they are ready to join with non-Muslims and fight back against the Islamophobia that is growing in the US. Much of the Muslim participation was organized by the newly formed Muslim Peace Coalition, USA, which partnered with UNAC in building the demonstrations. In New York, the Muslim Leadership Council of Metropolitan New York and the Islamic Circles of North America (ICNA) co-sponsored the demonstration.
Other communities also join our rallies including significant South Asian, Latino, Filipino and Black organizations. The rallies were diverse and youthful. This the new face of the antiwar movement.
April 9th saw 10,000 people march and rally in New York City and 3,000 in San Francisco.
Demonstration took place in other parts of the world in solidarity (see articles below on the demonstrations in Pakistan, Iraq and Canada).
UNAC will now work to consolidate the gains from these actions. We call upon all endorsing organizations to join UNAC. This can be done simply by emailing us at UNACpeace@gmail.com.
We encourage all UNAC supporters to join with immigrants’ rights and labor organization on May 1st demonstration being organized around the country. In New York, information on the May 1st demonstration is at http://www.may1.info/.
Please send UNACpeace@gmail.org news coverage, video links and photos
Below are some pictures, videos and news coverage of the demonstrations.
Picture of the San Francisco demonstration on the front page of the SF Chronicle:
Full video of all speakers at April 9, NYC rally (scroll down to see the video)
A couple of more videos of the New York rally:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/173995.html (from PressTV)
Picture from the SF rally.
Some youtube coverage
A few of the talks at the April 9 NYC Rally:
April 10th demonstration in Pakistan:
Below are areticles on the antiwar protest in Pakistan that were in solidarity with out April 9 and 10 rallies.
Daily Times - Site Edition
Monday, April 11, 2011
Leftists stage protest against US war on terror
Speaker says aim of protest is to show solidarity with UN Antiwar
Committee, demand government stop drone attacks
By Arsalan Haider
LAHORE: Leftist political parties and movements, on Sunday, held a protest against the ‘so-called US war on terror’ at the Charing Cross. The protesters chanted slogans against the US war on terror, drone attacks, NATO’s supply and attack on Libya.
They also demanded the US government to stop drone attacks, to shut down all American ports in Pakistan and to wind up wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.
The parties that were protesting included the Labour Party Pakistan, Awami Party, Workers Party Pakistan, Awami Jamhuri Forum, Socialist Revolution Movement, National Student Federation, National Trade Union Federation, Railway Workers Union and Pakistan Kissan Rabta Committee.
The speakers, while addressing the audience, said that the spreading US poison in the name of war on terror can be seen in Afghanistan and Iraq, an example of which is the increasing crime rate there.
They added, “The same war had spread over to Pakistan where a large number of people lost their lives and millions lost their homes due to the US drone attacks.”
They said that the Pakistan Army had started conducting raids in the southern parts of the country on behalf of the US.
The speakers said that the US is a partner in the crime of pushing the movements in Middle East and North Africa, which had started as a mark of protest against their cruel rulers and the investor class.
Labour Party Pakistan General Secretary, Rana Aslam, told Daily Times that the purpose of the demonstration was to show solidarity with the United National Antiwar Committee.
He added that demonstration of thousands of Americans against their government is proof that “it is not a war of cultures but it is a war of rights”.
Aslam added that the US government is spending billions of dollars on the wars, which is also affecting the social expenses. He added, “Similarly, the government of Pakistan has also shortened the development budget and increased the defence budget by upto 25 percent.” Aslam added that all parties are also going to hold demonstrations in several cities across the country, including Karachi, Islamabad, Peshawar, Multan and Hyderabad.
Protest against Nato attacks on Libya
Monday, April 11, 2011
WORKERS of eight political parties and numerous civil society bodies held a massive protest demonstration in front of Punjab Assembly against the indiscriminate bombing by Nato forces at unarmed civilians in Libya and to mark 10 years of American terrorism in the name of War On Terror.
Labour Party Pakistan, Awami Party, Worker s Party Pakistan, Awami Jamhoori Forum, Inqalabi Socialists Tehrik, National Students Federation, National Trade Union Federation, Pakistan Kissan Rabta Committee and others participated in the demonstration and stressed upon the leftist parties of Pakistan to denounce America s self-righteous terror campaign to serve its vested interests of global domination and demolition in the name of global peace and democracy.
The protestors were holding banners and placards inscribed with slogans such as, No More War for Peace , Mind Your Own Business America , and NATO Leave Libya NOW . The protestors chanted Go America Go slogans and condemned American political expansionism through force.
Leaders from different parties, including Naeem Shakir, Talib Hussain, Irfan Chaudhry and Dr Afshan Zaheer said that the utter disregard for human life shown by France, USA and Brittan by bombing innocent and unarmed civilians in Libya was the worst human rights disaster ever under the tag of the so-called saving of humanity.
They said that the Western agenda of war for peace had caused millions of innocent deaths all across the world and this latest violation of life by the Nato forces needed to stop immediately.
They demanded that if UNO wanted to get rid of the tag American body to legalise all American acts then it should take prompt action against all pre-emptive and presumptive offensives advocated by America and the Nato forces and should save all humanity from the terrorism and extremism of this block out to destroy world peace.
The protesters staged a token sit-in at the Faysal Chowk and blocked the traffic which created extended traffic jam all along The Mall and all its connecting roads as well. The sit-in, although was ended after 45 minutes, it took a good while for the traffic to resume to its normal flow after the protest ended and the protestors dispersed.
April 9th demonstrations in Iraq
Below is a link to the New York Times article on the demonstrations that took place in Iraq on April 9th
April 9th demonstrations in Canada
Below is a brief report on the actions in Canada on April 9 by Derrick O'Keefe, Co-chair of the Canadian Peace Alliance
Our #s were more modest. Even Montreal only a few hundred, same for Toronto and 200 in Vancouver, total of about 10 actions across country. Our challenge now is to convince people Cdn's not actually leaving this year, at that the so-called "training" mission is a continuation of the war.
We're already talking about day of action in Oct - 10th anniversary of war.
Co-chair Canadian Peace Alliance
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