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Global Call For Nonviolent Civil Resistance To War

NEWS RELEASE

GLOBAL CALL FOR NONVIOLENT CIVIL RESISTANCE
TO END THE U.S.-LED MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ

For Release On: December 17, 2005

Contact:
dm@aglobalcall.org
Global Call to Action
Voluntown, CT, USA

Our website: www.aglobalcall.org

NEWS RELEASE

FROM:
Nobel Peace and Literature Laureates
Cindy Sheehan and other peace and human-rights activists
Religious leaders of various traditions
Prisoners of Conscience
Former government ministers
Poets, authors, journalists

A Global Call for Nonviolent Civil Resistance at U.S. and British government installations around the world has been issued by Nobel Peace and Literature Laureates along with Cindy Sheehan and other peace and human-rights activists, religious leaders, and others. The signers, from 16 countries, “invite peace-makers throughout the world to participate in an international campaign of massive, nonviolent civil resistance to stop the U.S.-led occupation of Iraq. These actions could be organized to include both non-violent civil resistance and legal demonstrations.”

The proponents of the Call include Harold Pinter, this year´s winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, and Nobel Peace Laureates Mairead Corrigan Maguire of Northern Ireland (1976) and Adolfo Pérez Esquivel of Argentina (1980).

The first date of international actions is March 19-20, 2006, the third anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. (Subsequent action dates are presented in the Call, below.) The group envisions that “some would participate in legal demonstrations while others would stage sit-ins, die-ins, and other nonviolent methods of blocking ‘business as usual’ at government buildings or installations (including military bases and recruiting centers) or at corporate offices of war profiteers in the U.S., Great Britain, and other countries which are taking part in the deadly and unjust military occupation of Iraq.”

As for peace-makers in countries whose governments are not at war in Iraq, they are asked to “consider U.S. or British embassies, consulates, military bases, or appropriate corporate offices as sites for legal demonstrations and nonviolent civil resistance.”

The signers of the Global Call emphasize that “the Number One message of every action would be: END THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ. The killing of tens of thousands of civilians, the wounding of perhaps 100,000 or more people, the torture and murder of prisoners in U.S. custody – these and other realities of the occupation are evidence of the massive state terrorism being perpetrated against the people of Iraq. At the same time, we mourn the deaths of over 2,300 soldiers of the ‘coalition forces,’ while we denounce the lies (weapons of mass destruction, ties between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda) proclaimed in an effort to justify the invasion.”

The GLOBAL CALL follows:

*****************************************

GLOBAL CALL FOR NONVIOLENT CIVIL RESISTANCE
TO END THE U.S.-LED MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ

For Release On: December 17, 2005

Contact:
dm@aglobalcall.org
Global Call to Action
Voluntown, CT, USA

Our website: www.aglobalcall.org

FROM:
Nobel Peace and Literature Laureates
Cindy Sheehan and other peace and human-rights activists
Religious leaders of various traditions
Prisoners of Conscience
Former government ministers
Poets, authors, journalists

(Please see end of this message for the full list of Signers and their identification.)

We, the undersigned, invite peace-makers throughout the world to participate in an international campaign of massive, nonviolent civil resistance to stop the U.S.-led occupation of Iraq. These actions could be organized to include both non-violent civil resistance and legal demonstrations.

The killing of tens of thousands of civilians, the wounding of perhaps 100,000 or more people, the torture and murder of prisoners in U.S. custody – these and other realities of the occupation are evidence of the massive state terrorism being perpetrated against the people of Iraq. At the same time, we mourn the deaths of over 2,300 soldiers of the “coalition forces,” while we denounce the lies (weapons of mass destruction, ties between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda) proclaimed in an effort to justify the invasion.


FIRST DATE OF INTERNATIONAL ACTIONS: March 19-20, 2006, the third anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. The subsequent days of action are specified below.


THE ACTIONS

Some would participate in legal demonstrations while others would stage sit-ins, die-ins, and other nonviolent methods of blocking "business as usual" at government buildings or installations (including military bases and recruiting centers) or at corporate offices of war profiteers in the U.S., Great Britain, and other countries which are taking part in the deadly and unjust military occupation of Iraq. For these governments, "business as usual" is the business of violence, death, and exploitation. It must be blocked and stopped by responsible citizens.

Peace-makers in countries whose governments are not at war in Iraq could consider
U.S. or British embassies, consulates, military bases, or appropriate corporate offices as sites for legal demonstrations and nonviolent civil resistance.


EXAMPLES OF POSSIBLE ACTIONS

A group could sit down in the entrance of a U.S. or British government installation in any country, refusing to leave when the U.S. Marines or other security agents order them to disperse. They could insist on having a meeting with the ambassador or the officer in charge of the military base, or they could wait for a clear statement from Washington, D.C., or from London of the date when all their soldiers will be withdrawn from Iraq.

If those doing civil resistance are not able to enter U.S. or British property, they could sit down on the street or sidewalk in front of the building or base, or they could lie down in a "die-in"representing the victims of the war. In any case those involved in civil resistance might be carried out of the building or away from the entrance and arrested by the police.

We invite people to think of other creative forms of civil resistance and to share these ideas with us so that we can pass them along to others.(For instance, people in the U.S. might consider the local offices of their U.S. Senators and Representatives among the potential sites for non-violent action.)

All of this could happen in the presence of the mass media and in conjunction with a large legal demonstration very close to the same site.

The impact of these actions on public opinion, the mass media, and governments
would come from their sheer quantity and geographical diversity , on the same day, as well as from the clarity of their message and the disciplined nonviolence of the tactics. As this
invitation spreads through the internet and other media, we expect that hundreds of actions could be held in scores of countries around the world, all with the same purpose--to demand an end to the military occupation of Iraq.


A SUSTAINED, GROWING CAMPAIGN

The second INTERNATIONAL DAY OF NON-VIOLENT CIVIL RESISTANCE TO END THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ will be May 1, May Day, the International Day of the Worker -- an occasion for massive demonstrations all over the world where working class struggle is celebrated and kept alive. The impact of the war on the poor and working class of the world could be emphasized.

The third INTERNATIONAL DAY OF NON-VIOLENT CIVIL RESISTANCE TO END THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ will be August 9, 2006, the 61st anniversary of the U.S. nuclear bombing of Nagasaki, Japan-- to demand an end to U.S. proliferation of nuclear weapons of mass destruction and an end to the U.S. state terrrorism in Iraq.

The fourth INTERNATIONAL DAY OF NON-VIOLENT CIVIL RESISTANCE TO END THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ will be Sept. 11, 2006, the 5th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attack on the U.S.-- to commemorate and deplore that horrible act of violence and to denounce the terrorist violence which the U.S. government is inflicting on Iraq under the false pretense of the "war on terrorism."

If necessary, we will continue with the INTERNATIONAL DAYS OF NON-
VIOLENT CIVIL RESISTANCE TO END THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ. The fifth could be on Dec. 10, 2006, International Human Rights Day. (The Day itself, Dec. 10, falls on a Sunday, which would be appropriate for legal demonstrations. Groups doing civil resistance or civil disobedience actions at government installations may choose Monday, Dec. 11, when these offices will be open. This is similar to the situation of March 19-20.)


PATH TO ACTION

If you are interested in discussing this proposal with us, please contact:
dm@aglobalcall.org
(It is possible that by making this initial contact you may be putting yourself in some legal jeopardy.)

If you express interest in implementing this proposal, our Coordinating Committee could put you in touch with others from your country, region, or city who have also expressed interest to explore possibilities for collaboration.

We would be willing to support the local grass-roots organizing efforts according to the needs of the individuals and groups in these areas. Contact us if you would like any guidance or assistance. As we develop our contact list, we will send out update information and other information to assist you and your group in the planning of your actions.

The Number One message of every action would be: END THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ. This emphasis must be clear if the many actions in many places are to have a profound impact on the public and governments. Local or national organizers may wish to present one or two related issues or demands, with the main focus staying on ENDING THE MILITARY OCCUPATION OF IRAQ.

Our Coordinating Committee will send out a brief sample statement which could be used with each action. Groups are free to express their demands and motivations in religious language or not, as they see fit.


SPREADING THE WORD

We ask individuals, groups, and organizations around the globe to endorse this Call and to send it out to their mailing lists and to the media. Groups which are not committed to participating in the actions of civil resistance could simply transmit our Call.

We hope that this global call will be a part of a sustained grass-roots campaign to end the military occupation of Iraq. Through our Coordinating Committee, we would be happy to support grass-roots efforts to this end and to work with others in organizing nonviolent civil resistance around the world.

Some persons and organizations may choose to organize legal demonstrations (without any component of civil resistance) on the days we have proposed. We would request that they inform us of the legal demonstration they are planning, and that they inform their local media. We will also inform international media about the actions planned.

As for those who are planning civil resistance in their locality, if you are proposing
this publicly prior to your action, please inform your local or national media and please let us
know so that we can inform the international media.

If you are not making this public before your action, please inform us as soon as the
action takes place so that we can report it as one of many actions in various parts of the
world.

Thanks for your kind consideration of this proposal.

Sincerely,

(Signers are from 16 countries. In some cases organizational affiliations are for personal identification purposes only.)

Gary Ashbeck
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Jonah House

Father Daniel Berrigan, S.J.
New York, NY; USA
Catholic priest, author, lecturer, peace activist

Father Roy Bourgeois, M.M.
Columbus, Georgia, USA
Catholic priest; Founder, School of the Americas Watch

Father Ernesto Cardenal
Managua, NICARAGUA
Catholic priest; poet, sculptor, former Minister of Culture of Nicaragua

Bishop Pedro Casaldáliga
Sao Felix de Araguaia, BRAZIL
Retired bishop of Catholic diocese of Sao Felix
Theologian, author

Christian Base Communities
SPAIN

Patricia Clark
Nyack, NY, USA
Executive Director, Fellowship of Reconciliation

Comité Oscar Romero de Madrid
Madrid, SPAIN

Mairead Corrigan Maguire
Belfast, NORTHERN IRELAND
1976 Nobel Peace Laureate
Co-founder of Peace People

Susan Crane
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Jonah House

Father John Dear, S.J.
Cerrillos, New Mexico, USA
Catholic priest, peace activist, author

Rev. Richard Deats
Nyack, NY, USA
Former Executive Secretary and Fellowship Editor, Fellowship of Reconciliation

Marie Dennis
Washington, D.C., USA
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
Pax Christi International

Father Miguel d'Escoto, M.M..
Managua, NICARAGUA
Catholic priest; Foreign Minister of Nicaragua 1979-1990;
Proponent of Nonviolent Evangelical Insurrection against Imperialism

Xavier Dias
editor of ADHIKAR, a monthly Hindi bulletin for communities affected by mining.
Ranchi, Jharkhand, INDIA

Dorothy Day Catholic Worker
Washington, D.C., USA

Jim and Shelley Douglass
Birmingham, Alabama; USA
Mary´s House Catholic Worker

Bishop Thomas Gumbleton
Detroit, Michigan; USA
Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit
Pastor of urban parish, author, lecturer, peace activist

Father G. Simon Harak, S.J.
New York, New York, USA
Catholic priest; Anti-Militarism Coordinator
War Resisters League

Jennifer Harbury and Sister Dianna Ortiz
Washington, D.C., USA
Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International

Hartford Catholic Worker Community
Hartford, CT, USA

Father Francois Houtart
Louvain la Neuve, BELGIUM
Catholic priest; Prof. Emeritus of the Catholic University of Louvain;
Member of the International Council of the World Social Forum

Jonah House Community
Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Judith Kelly
Arlington, Virginia; USA
Mid-Atlantic Regional Associate, Pace e Bene Nonviolence Service;
Prisoner of Conscience in Movement Against School of the Americas

Kathy Kelly
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Voices for Creative Non-Violence

Eric LeCompte
Washington, DC, USA
SOA Watch Event Coordinator

Jerimarie Liesegang, PhD
Hartford, CT, USA
Queer Activist
Director, Ct TransAdvocacy Coalition

Madrid Committee of Solidarity with Black Africa
Madrid, SPAIN

Danny Malec
Voluntown, Connecticut, USA
Global Call to Action

Father Regino Martínez, S.J.
Dajabón, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Catholic priest; Coordinator of Border Solidarity

Liz McAlister
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Jonah House

Edel Mihm
Saarbruecken, GERMANY
Journalist

Father Uriel Molina Oliú
Managua, NICARAGUA
Catholic priest;
theologian, founder and former director of Centro Antonio Valdivieso, Managua

Father Ismael Moreno, S.J.
El Progreso, Yoro, HONDURAS
Catholic priest;
Director of the Reflection, Research, and Communication Team (ERIC)

Father Joseph Mulligan, S.J.
Managua, NICARAGUA
Catholic priest working with Christian Base Communities; writer, peace activist

Mary Novak
Voluntown, Connecticut, USA
Global Call to Action

Michael O´Grady, S.J.
Cambridge, Mass., USA

Adolfo Perez Esquivel
ARGENTINA
1980 Nobel Peace Laureate

Harold Pinter
London, ENGLAND
2005 Nobel Literature Laureate

Ted Schmidt
Toronto, Ont., CANADA
Editor, Catholic New Times

Ramón Sepulveda Velez
PUERTO RICO
Community Organizer

Cindy Sheehan
Berkeley, California, USA
Peace Mom – mother of Army Spc. Casey A. Sheehan, who was killed in Iraq on April 4, 2004
Founder of Gold Star Families for Peace
Cindy camped at George Bush´s ranch in August, 2005, demanding to speak with the president.

Joanne Sheehan
Norwich, Connecticut, USA
Chair of War Resisters´ International
War Resisters League/New England coordinator

Father Eugene Toland, M.M.
BOLIVIA

José María Vigil
PANAMÁ
Teólogo

Dr. Stellan Vinthagen
Department of Peace and Development Research
Goteberg, SWEDEN

Rabbi Arthur Waskow, director
The Shalom Center
Philadelphia, Pa., USA

The Rev. Phil Wheaton
Takoma Park, Maryland, USA
Episcopal priest
Committee of Indigenous Solidarity-Zapatistas of Washington, DC

Workers´ Vanguard Communities
SPAIN

Rev. Bill Wylie-Kellermann
Detroit, Michigan, USA
United Methodist pastor, writer
Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education

Father Francisco Xammar, S.J.
Tarragona, SPAIN
Catholic priest;
International Christian Secretariate of Solidarity with the Peoples of Latin America (SICSAL)

Celeste Zappala
Philadelphia, Pa., USA
Mother of Sgt Sherwood Baker, killed in action in Iraq on April 26, 2004
Member, Gold Star Families
United Methodist


(As you send this Call out to your mailing lists and media contacts, please express your personal and/or organizational endorsement at the start of your message, if you wish.)


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