Monday, April 13, 2015

Stop Boeing From Selling Smart Bombs to the IDF! 

In November 2014, Boeing was awarded an $83 million contract by the Israel Air Force for providing 3000 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAMs). JDAMs are kits that convert unguided bombs into “smart” guided weapons. Just months earlier, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge, killing over 2000 Palestinians, including 513 children. 

How important are these JDAMs for Israel’s wars? During Operation Cast Lead in 2008-09, out of all the bombs dropped, 81 percent were using Boeing’s JDAM tail, with Boeing’s satellite guided software. 

Since 2009, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) increased the percentage of guided munitions in their arsenal. Without exaggeration, we can say that Boeing contributed directly to the deaths of over 80% of the Palestinian dead. 

Therefore, we charge that Boeing is complicit in Israel's assault on Gaza and its cruel and illegal military occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Boeing has the blood of thousands of Palestinians on its hands.  

Furthermore, Boeing’s Defense, Space, and Security department, which made the deal with Israel, is located in St. Louis, MO, about 15 miles away from Ferguson, MO.  When Ferguson community members were under siege by police terror in the wake of the murder of 18 year-old Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson, the people in Gaza expressed solidarity and support. Boeing’s new deal violates this special bond and puts money towards war that could be going toward education and eliminating the school to prison pipeline that disproportionately impacts Black and other oppressed nationality youth.  

We condemn Boeing’s business dealings with the IDF, from selling weapons to collaborating with Israeli armament companies. We demand that Boeing sever its ties with Israel and that Boeing prioritize production that improves the world, not destroy it.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Chicago Stands with Venezuela

Antiwar Committee Chicago is proud to be one of many signatories on the following statement in suuport of Venezuela:

On March 9, President Obama issued an alarming and outrageous Executive Order declaring Venezuela to be an “unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States…” imposing sanctions and basically threatening to overthrow the democratically elected government. 

Venezuela has not threatened the U.S. in any way, except by being politically independent and working to develop independent, sovereign economic policies in collaboration with other Latin American countries that also reject US domination.  We note that the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), which represents every country in South America, has condemned the Executive Order as a "threat of interference" against Venezuela's sovereignty. Presidents Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro were both elected in what the Carter Center, runs by former President Jimmy Carter, declared to be the best election process in the world.

On the other hand, the US has, since 1998 when Hugo Chavez Frias and the Bolivarian movement won the first of many elections, carried out covert and overt interference leading to violence and threatening Venezuelan democracy. These actions  include funding and advising opposition parties and groups that have in turn fomented violence in Venezuela  and in April 2002 the US supported an attempted coup d’├ętat (April 2002) in which President Chavez was kidnapped by opposition groups. 

US interference and aggression has continued since Nicholas Maduro was elected president in April 2013.  The most extreme opposition groups funded and encouraged by the US led violent street actions and attacks from January - May 2014. While other governments in Latin America and the Vatican assisted the Venezuelan government in bringing much of the opposition to dialogue, US officials and members of the US Congress House of Representatives approved sanctions against Venezuela in May 2014 — de facto support for the extremist opposition. In February 2015 a new coup plot “operation Jericho” was uncovered that planned bombings of government and civilian centers in Caracas and involved some of the same opposition figures involved in the 2002 coup. 

As residents of the Chicago we reject the pressures from the US government and others that led to a Chicago City Council resolution in 2014 supporting US interference in Venezuela. It is clear to us that Venezuela’s government and people are no threat to the people of the United States or to US National Security. On the contrary, support for violence and attempts at destabilization by the US government are a threat to peace and to the well being of the people of the United States and of Venezuela. We call on President Obama, to rescind the  executive order naming Venezuela a US national security threat and to end sanctions against Venezuela and Venezuelan officials and we call on the US government to end all interference in Venezuela. 

Monday, January 5, 2015

No Weapons Sales To Israel

Below are two statements from AWC....


Stop Boeing From Selling Smart Bombs to the IDF!
In November 2014, Boeing was awarded an $83 million contract by the Israel Air Force for providing 3000 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAMs). JDAMs are kits that convert unguided bombs into “smart” guided weapons. Just months earlier, Israel launched Operation Protective Edge, killing over 2000 Palestinians, including 513 children. By producing these JDAMs and other weapons for the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), Boeing is fortifying Israel’s actions and contributing to the occupation of Palestine.  Therefore, we charge that Boeing has the blood of thousands of Palestinians on its hands. 

Furthermore, Boeing’s Defense, Space, and Security department, which made the deal with Israel, is located in St. Louis, MO, about 15 miles away from Ferguson, MO.  When Ferguson community members were under siege by police terror in the wake of the murder of 18 year-old Michael Brown by officer Darren Wilson, the people in Gaza expressed solidarity and support. Boeing’s new deal violates this special bond and puts money towards war that could be going toward education and eliminating the school to prison pipeline that disproportionately impacts Black and other oppressed nationality youth. 


We condemn Boeing’s business dealings with the IDF, from selling weapons to collaborating with Israeli armament companies. There is a growing movement calling for an arms embargo on Israel, echoing the call from civil society organizations in Palestine.  We are adding our voices and demanding the US government implement a military embargo on Israel and force Boeing to sever its ties.


Black Lives Matter! Justice for Mike Brown & Eric Garner!
In 2014, in separate instances, police officers killed two unarmed Black men; Mike Brown in Ferguson, MO and Eric Garner in Staten Island, NY. In both cases, the officers were not indicted. Anti-War Committee Chicago stands in solidarity with oppressed people-not just abroad but in the US as well. 

We have witnessed firsthand the injustice of the US courts in the case of Rasmea Odeh. Why is a prominent Palestinian community organizer facing incarceration while homicidal police officer Darren Wilson, who publicly stated he has no remorse, walks free? Why are Rasmea’s supporters labeled as “almost certainly criminal” and the person who filmed the police killing Eric Garner indicted while the officer that used the lethal, illegal chokehold faces no charges? 

These murderous cops were exonerated, despite mountains of evidence. This is a chilling affirmation of the systemic racism in this country. As we saw in the case of Eric Garner, cameras and video footage of cops cannot solve this problem. We support those protesting in Ferguson, New York, and countless other cities across the globe. We call for justice for Mike Brown, Eric Garner, and all victims of police crimes. We want an end to police control of oppressed Black and Latino communities.



OCCUPATION IS A CRIME FROM FERGUSON TO PALESTINE!


If you or your organization would like to endorse these statements, please email Kait McIntyre, Anti-War Committee Chicago member, at kait.mcintyre@gmail.com    

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Two symbols of the continued resistance of the Palestinian people: Steven Salaita & Rasmea Odeh

Monday, October 6, 2014

U.S. Attorney threatens supporters of Rasmea Odeh

Breaking news from StopFBI.Net:

Bizarre DOJ accusations against Hatem Abudayyeh attempt to criminalize opponents of political repression


In a bizarre and desperate move, prosecutors in the case of Palestinian American leader Rasmea Odeh filed a motion in Federal Court Oct. 3, which characterized the efforts of an important leader of the Rasmea Odeh defense campaign, Hatem Abudayyeh, as “jury tampering” and “almost certainly criminal.” The prosecution then asks Judge Gershwin Drain for an “Anonymous Jury,” which means that the names of the jurors are kept secret from the defense attorneys, and that an array of security measures are put it place during the trial that make it seem like 67-year-old Rasmea Odeh is a dangerous person.

There is no evidence at all for the baseless accusations against the movement in support of Rasmea. The prosecutor’s motion is a clumsy attempt at intimidation and should be condemned by everyone who is concerned about civil liberties.

Here are the facts. Rasmea Odeh is a beloved leader of the Palestinian community in Chicago who is facing trumped up immigration charges. Imprisoned by the Israelis in the late 1960s, due to her work to free Palestine, Rasmea was tortured and sexually abused. She is well-known and respected across the world. The federal government is threatening her with jail and deportation. As a result, a powerful and effective movement organized protests around the country, demanding “Justice for Rasmea.”

Now the prosecutors are waging an attack on everyone involved in this movement to support and defend Rasmea.


They talk about ‘jury tampering.’ Until there is a trial, there is no jury, so how could a jury possibly be tampered with? In any event, at no time have we ever tried to improperly influence a jury. Not once. What we are doing is organizing protests, having people sign petitions and holding educational events. We are encouraging people to attend Rasmea’s court appearances. We are shining a light on the unjust prosecution of Rasmea. We want the government to drop the charges.

In the prosecutor’s motion we are told, “Hatem Abudayyeh has orchestrated a concerted effort to influence the criminal proceedings against defendant, which has resulted, at each proceeding, in a large group outside the Courthouse protesting and parading, carrying signs demanding dismissal of charges and 'Justice for Rasmea' and displaying the Palestinian flag.” Imagine that. Palestinians, Arabs and progressive people responding to an injustice by holding a protest and engaging in activity that is protected by the First Amendment. In the world that the Detroit U.S. Attorney wants, speaking out as we have is, “almost certainly criminal.” On the contrary - it is criminal for the prosecutors to attempt to restrict our constitutional rights.

It is worth noting that there is a distinctly racist, anti-Arab undertone to the prosecutor’s motion, where spirited and dignified protests, with a majority of Palestinian American participants, are described as “hordes” and “mobs.” Again, the federal government is trying to sow fear among people in the U.S. by criminalizing and stereotyping Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims. As one of Rasmea's lawyers said when he was informed of the motion, it, " is only intended to play the 'terrorism' card and is unacceptable."

The prosecutors also have a problem with people who want to petition the government for a redress of grievances, so they complain in their motion that those who want the charges against Rasmea dropped “have previously attempted to flood Department of Justice telephone lines in an attempt to influence these proceedings.”

We will continue to hold call-in days and we will organize even more people to participate in them.

We take the threats of the prosecution seriously. We urge all of our supporters to keep their eyes on Detroit and to be ready to respond to any attacks on leaders of the Rasmea defense campaign.

We see these threats as a sign that our campaign to defend Rasmea Odeh is working. We were successful in getting Zionist Judge Borman off the case. There are now thousands of people across the country engaged in organizing for Rasmea. We will not allow the government to intimidate us. This attack will bring more supporters and strengthen our work further. We will redouble our efforts to make sure the charges against Rasmea are dropped!