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Dear Friends,

Please consider adding your name to the following statement. If, after reading it, you like what it has to say, please take a few seconds to visit this page and add your name to the statement. The statement was released on March 27, 2003, and already more than 2697 have signed on!

“I stand for peace and justice.

I stand for democracy and autonomy. I don�t think the U.S. or any other country should ignore the popular will and violate and weaken international law, seeking to bully and bribe votes in the Security Council.

I stand for internationalism. I oppose any nation spreading an ever expanding network of military bases around the world and producing an arsenal unparalleled in the world.

I stand for equity. I don�t think the U.S. or any other country should seek empire. I don�t think the U.S. ought to control Middle Eastern oil on behalf of U.S. corporations and as a wedge to gain political control over other countries.

I stand for freedom. I oppose brutal regimes in Iraq and elsewhere but I also oppose the new doctrine of �preventive war,� which guarantees permanent and very dangerous conflict, and is the reason why the U.S. is now regarded as the major threat to peace in much of the world. I stand for a democratic foreign policy that supports popular opposition to imperialism, dictatorship, and political fundamentalism in all its forms.

I stand for solidarity. I stand for and with all the poor and the excluded. Despite massive disinformation millions oppose unjust, illegal, immoral war, and I want to add my voice to theirs. I stand with moral leaders all over the world, with world labor, and with the huge majority of the populations of countries throughout the world.

I stand for diversity. I stand for an end to racism directed against immigrants and people of color. I stand for an end to repression at home and abroad.

I stand for peace. I stand against this war and against the conditions, mentalities, and institutions that breed and nurture war and injustice.

I stand for sustainability. I stand against the destruction of forests, soil, water, environmental resources, and biodiversity on which all life depends.

I stand for justice. I stand against economic, political, and cultural institutions that promote a rat race mentality, huge economic and power inequalities, corporate domination even unto sweatshop and slave labor, racism, and gender and sexual hierarchies.

I stand for a policy that redirects the money used for war and military spending to provide healthcare, education, housing, and jobs.

I stand for a world whose political, economic, and social institutions foster solidarity, promote equity, maximize participation, celebrate diversity, and encourage full democracy.

I stand for peace and justice and, more, I pledge to work for peace and justice.”

The co-authored essay which produced this statement is here, with a list of the initial signatories.

US mistakenly offers war money to peaceful Slovenia

LJUBLJANA, March 27 (Reuters) – The United States mistakenly named Slovenia as a partner in its war against Iraq and even offered it a share of the money budgeted for the conflict, the tiny Alpine nation said on Thursday.

One day after hundreds of Slovenians hit the streets to protest the inclusion of their nation in Tuesday’s U.S. war budget, Prime Minister Anton Rop said Washington goofed.

“When we asked for an explanation, the State Department told us we were named in the document by mistake as we are not a member of the coalition against Iraq,” Rop told a hastily arranged news conference.

Slovenia was one of the states named in the $75 billion U.S. war budget which must be approved by Congress and includes grants to partners in the U.S.-led military action. Slovenia was slated to get $4.5 million from the budget, which Rop said will not be forthcoming.

“We are a part of no such coalition. We are a part of a coalition for peace,” Rop said.

Thanks to Richard for this gem.

Bits and Pieces of War Silliness

1.Last year’s classic song “If You Cannot Find Osama, Bomb Iraq” has now been turned into a flash animation. (Via Nick Barlow via Barney Gumble.)

2. The Onion‘s war edition is out, with Bush Bravely Leads 3d Infantry Into Battle, Dead Iraqi Would Have Loved Democracy (“Baghdad resident Taha Sabri, killed Monday in a U.S. air strike on his city, would have loved the eventual liberation of Iraq and establishment of democracy, had he lived to see it, his grieving widow said…), and a handy Point/Counterpoint: This War Will Destabilize The Entire Mideast Region And Set Off A Global Shockwave Of Anti-Americanism — No It Won’t.

3. The best recent entertaining-if-true-but-it-probably-isn’t story comes in the reports that Dick Cheney’s daughter Mary may be in Amman en route to Baghdad to be a human shield. (UPDATE: Or is it the other Cheney daughter, Elizabeth — the straight daughter who works for the Administration — who is in Amman in order to begin ceasefire negotiations?)

4. In the beyond parody category, we should place Andrew Sullivan’s confession that “I cannot read the New York Times right now”, together the decision to award Dick Cheney’s Halliburton a big juicy contract to fight oilwell fires in Iraq without even putting it out to tender…

Down-Gown

From the Guardian‘s coverage of Oscar night:

Having made a last-minute decision to go ahead with the ceremony after weeks of increasingly frenetic ‘will-they, won’t-they’ jitters, organisers and celebrities alike are already mounting a campaign of damage limitation.A small number of celebrities… have pulled out of the ceremony, voicing disgust that America’s annual parade of self-congratulation is going ahead despite the war. Designers Giorgio Armani and Collette Dinnigan have cancelled trips to Hollywood to dress the stars and left it to their US-based associates to do the pampering instead.

A determination to ‘down-gown’, that is, to exchange frivolous glitz with muted glamour, has been announced as the tactic of choice by celebrities keen to demonstrate their sensitivity and political awareness but unwilling to boycott the ceremony altogether.

!!!

Snippets

For two days in a row now, the Today programme on BBC Radio 4 seems to be dominated by stories of helicopter crashes which have killed quite a few people. The lengthy discussions of these incidents (about which there is, in fact, very little to say) annoy me, insofar as they tend to strengthen the impression that the major problems facing the US / UK troops are equipment failures of various kinds. I’m not sure that this is the case.

More interesting stories found online this morning include:

  • A document purporting to be the BBC’s War Reporting Editorial Guidelines (via IndyMedia UK).
  • Reports of the US use of napalm on Safwan Hill (in the Sydney Morning Herald).
  • The resignation of a UK government senior legal adviser (in the Guardian).
  • Robert Fisk’s report of last night’s attacks on Baghdad (in the Independent).
  • Ominous BBC reports of Turkish troops entering Northern Iraq.
  • Protests

    From Indymedia UK:

    Students and residents in Oxford have continued the actions this morning and afternoon. On the Cornmarket shop-street, people dressed in black stood along the paved road, and at 12:30 many church bells rang in mourning. A discussion space was active under Carfax Tower. Subsequently some people chained all the gas pumps at the E$$O gas station in the south of the city. Others are now ocupying the offices of pro-war Labour MP Andrew Smith in East Oxford.

    This follows on from an abortive attempt to occupy the town hall yesterday and a series of roadblocks. (Pictures, but not especially good ones, unfortunately, are here. The one at the bottom, in case you were wondering, is a pile of police-horse-shit).More activity promised later this evening.