RN:We are not alone (in resistance to the bombings)


Jan Slakov

Dear RN list,   Dec. 19

I have a bit of a confession to make: There have been so many good things
happening to resist the bombing, that the excitement of being part of that
has almost obscured my awareness of what people in Iraq will be suffering now.

Anyhow, I must share some of the valuable postings that have come my way.
There's more than I can usefully put into one posting....

All the best, Jan

PS While it is a bit of a nuisance when people send declarations which
should go to Voices in the Wilderness to me, (so I have to forward them on),
it is also SO good to know that you are sending them in! I got a message
from VitW that they have been swamped with e-mail and will not be able to
reply to all the messages. A good sign!
Here's a good thing for media contacts:

Date:   Wed, 16 Dec 1998 21:39:12 -0500
From: Eric Fawcett <•••@••.•••>
Subject: U.S. News Release: Iraq and Impeachment 

From: Institute for Public Accuracy <•••@••.•••>
      (202) 347-0020  *  http://www.accuracy.org
      915 National Press Building, Washington, D.C. 20045
The following news release was distributed via fax on Wednesday
afternoon, December 16, 1998 a few minutes before the first reports 
that a military attack on Iraq had begun:


 MICHAEL RATNER, (212) 614-6430, (212) 243-3805, •••@••.•••,
      An attorney with the Center for Constitutional Rights,
 Ratner is author of a forthcoming American Journal of
 International Law article titled "Bypassing the Security Council:
 Use of Force and the Iraqi Inspection Regime." On Wednesday
 afternoon, Ratner said: "Clinton's repeated attacks on Iraq and
 his bombing of a pharmaceutical plant in the Sudan are
 impeachable. They violate the Constitution, which gives Congress
 the power to declare war, and the War Powers Resolution. Also,
 the U.N. Security Council has not given any authority to bomb
 Iraq for allegedly violating the inspection regime. A bombing
 would violate our Constitution -- only Congress can declare war.
 Clinton's attacks on Iraq are a subversion of our Constitution,
 our structure of government and treaty obligations."

 FRANCIS BOYLE, (217) 333-7954, •••@••.•••
      Professor of International Law at the University of Illinois
 College of Law in Champaign, Illinois, Boyle said: "The incentive
 is to start bombing and continue until January 6th, when the new
 Congress convenes and the resolution of the House Judiciary
 Committee dies. The new Congress would have to start impeachment
 proceedings all over again.... The war powers clause of the
 United States Constitution, Article I, Section 8, expressly
 requires authorization by Congress before the President can
 engage in acts of war, unless there is a direct attack upon the
 United States. Clinton has also violated the War Powers
 Resolution of 1973 that was enacted by Congress over President
 Nixon's veto in order to prevent a repetition of the Vietnam
 War scenario, where Americans were misled by repeated
 presidential lies, misrepresentations, deceits and falsehoods at
 every step of the way."

 SIMONA SHARONI, (202) 895-4927, (202) 723-3770, •••@••.•••
      Professor of Peace and Conflict Resolution at American
 University, Sharoni said: "Strategically, it is doubtful that
 bombing would get rid of Saddam Hussein or make him comply with
 UNSCOM. In fact, it could end UNSCOM's role. One cannot help but
 be sickened by the prospect of a miliary attack on the eve of
 Clinton's impeachment and in the midst of the holiday season."

 STEPHEN ZUNES, (415) 422-6981, (831) 425-2975, •••@••.•••
      Zunes is chair of the Peace and Justice Studies Program at
 the University of San Francisco. "No member state of the United
 Nations can unilaterally enforce a Security Council resolution
 without expressed approval by the Security Council," he said.
 "The U.S. had such authorization in 1991 regarding the expulsion
 of Iraqi forces from Kuwait -- but it has no such mandate now."
 Zunes added: "If the U.S. could unilaterally attack Iraq for its
 violations of a U.N. Security Council resolution, then Russia
 could unilaterally bomb Israel for its many violations of U.N.
 Security Council resolutions."

Joan Russow, the leader of the Canadian Green party, wrote to say that she's
involved with a group trying to take the US to court over the bombings. They
need a country to take the case to the International Court of Justice.
Judging from the posting below, Cuba ought to be interested...

Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998 11:09:34
From: Bill Koehnlein <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Cuba Deplores US-English Attacks on Iraq

Cuba Deplores US-English Attacks on Iraq

Via NY Transfer News Collective * All the News that Doesn't Fit


                        E-mail: •••@••.•••

Statement by the Cuan Foreign Ministry on the US-UK attack against Iraq.

The full text of the statement follows:

The Foreign Ministry of the Republic of Cuba observed with deep
concern as the armed forces of the United States deployed in the
Persian Gulf prepared a surprise air attack against Iraq.

Yesterday, December 16th, with the excuse that the work of the United
Nations Special Commission in that country (UNSCOM) had been
unexpectedly interrupted and an unusually precipitous report issued by
that Commission, President Clinton, once the hasty withdrawal of UNSCOM
members from Iraq was concluded, unilaterally ordered the commencement
of bombing against targets in Iraq. This was done without conferring
with the United Nations Security Council, an organization that
Washington now ignores after having used it on numerous occasions for
its own interests.

The bombing of Iraq, using Cruise missiles fired from naval vessels
located in the Persian Gulf, began at 12:50 a.m. today, local Baghdad
time.  Once again, peace is trampled upon, the rules of International
Law are violated and the physical well-being of the Iraqi people
disregarded, with arguments that do not and cannot convince
international public opinion.

Obviously, these attacks do not represent any solution for the problems
regarding Iraq, nor do they serve to consolidate international peace
and security.  They work in direct opposition to these objectives.

Cuba rejects, denounces and condemns the unilateral use of force by the
United States and, as on previous occasions, expresses its total
repudiation of these illegitimate actions, which must cease

At the same time, Cuba calls on the United Nations Security Council to
take the necessary measures to prevent similar actions from occuring
again and to fulfill the mission for which it was created.  Today, Iraq
is the victim of imperial abuse.  Tomorrow, another nation could be the
target of such dangerous conduct.  This requires the strongest and most
urgent rejection of [by] the entire international community.

Havana, 17th of December, 1998

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Here is just one report from a protest, one of many...

Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998 19:45:16 EST
From: Refuse & Resist <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Iraq Actions & Reports

[forwarded from the Anti-Intervention Network]


About 300 protesters took to the streets in Portland, Oregon to protest
the U.S. bombardment of Iraq on Thursday. The protest, which began at
Portland's downtown Justice Center, was a variety of stunned, sad,  angry,
and vocal people of all ages whose main message--that violence is not an
acceptable foreign policy--was greeted warmly by most of those who drove
At about 5:30 PM, police blocked off streets in the area, preventing the
protesters from getting their message out. The police, some on horses and
some in riot gear, had cleared the streets when about 20 people attempted
to block traffic. About 200 people spontaneously took off, with an
uninvited police escort, through the streets of downtown Portland.
Eventually, 20 to 30 people, including several juveniles, were arrested,
the majority after the police apparently gave a dispersal order. Police
horses kicked and stepped on several people, and some arrests were made in
a violent fashion, including one person who was picked up by his hair.
Arrests targeted leaders, including a person who was acting as police
The Peace and Justice Works Iraq Affinity Group, which organized the
initial protest, put out literature pointing out the similarities between
the United States/Bill Clinton and Iraq/Saddam Hussein. For instance, the
government here makes a big point that Iraq "gassed its own people" in
1988, while Clinton's ATF gassed and burned to the ground the Branch
Davidian compound in Waco in 1993. Similarly, the group pointed out, the
U.S. Congress is spending millions of dollars trying to remove both
Presidents from office.
Meanwhile, hundreds of cruise missiles continue to kill and maim hundreds
of Iraqis, while 6000 or more Iraqi children die monthly due to U.S./U.N.
The Iraq Affinity Group hopes that the general public takes a stance of
"No business as usual" as long as our government continues to drop bombs.
People should talk to their friends, neighbors, family and co-workers
about the reality of U.S. policy. It is not "hurting Saddam Hussein," but
killing innocent people in Iraq.
Thursday's protest followed a successful demonstration of about 125 on
Wednesday, which came together about 2 hours after the initial bombing.
About 40 people left that demonstration and crashed a "Don't Impeach
Clinton" Rally, bringing the message that if he does get impeached, it
should be for his crimes of bombing Sudan, Afghanistan and Iraq. The
anti-war demonstrators were able to change the topic from lying about sex
to the killing of children.

Refuse & Resist! - 305 Madison Avenue #1166 - New York, NY 10165
voice: 212-713-5657  - email: •••@••.••• - http://www.calyx.com/~refuse

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