FOR A NUCLEAR WEAPON FREE ZONE IN THE MIDDLE

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					PEACE MESSENGER
    VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008
                                                 Y E S TO P E A C E A N D I N T E R N AT I O N A L S O L I D A R I T Y, N O TO I M P E R I A L I S M A N D N E O - CO LO N I A L I S M
                                                   Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )   W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




Editorial                                    FOR A NUCLEAR WEAPON FREE ZONE
Report to the WPC Executive Committee
Thanassis Pafilis
                                             IN THE MIDDLE EAST!
WPC General Secretary                        Georges Spriet
                                             General Secretary of Vrede                               all the member states of the European Union            or economic enemy, with just a vague shade of
Hanoi — 19-20 November 2007                  Belgian Peace Movement                                   abstained. According to the Belgian Ministry of        suspicion on nuclear arms, should be isolated
                                                                                                      Foreign Affairs, they did so because they felt         and treated as a rogue state.
Dear Comrades,                                    A nuclear weapon free zone is a well de-            the resolution was politically abused by some              The peace movements could however try
     Our meeting being held here in          scribed region, the countries of which compel            Arab countries. Apparently, for them, inviting         and grasp the chance that the IAEA resolution
Hanoi is one of the most important ones      themselves not to produce, purchase, test or             Israel to join the non-proliferation treaty is an      offers, to publicly force their governments to
for the World Peace Council. It will         possess nuclear weapons. The treaty installing           abuse of the political situation. Indeed, accord-      act accordingly. Imagine for just a moment
deal with recent developments, the in-       such a zone contains a particular protocol that is       ing to the non-written Western policy of double        that ‘Brussels’ would officially recognise that
creased and serious activity undertaken      to be ratified by the nuclear weapons states from        standards, a friend that is trespassing all the        Israel possesses nuclear arms, which should be
by the WPC and, mainly, it will set the      the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), i.e., China,         rules represents no problem, but an ideological                                  continued on page 3
course leading up to our Assembly,           France, Russia, United Kingdom and United
which is to take place this coming April     States of America. In this protocol, which has                           Press Release of the World Peace Council about the
in Caracas, Venezuela.                       legal force, the big five declare to respect the na-
     We would like to thank the Viet-        ture of this zone, and not to use — nor threaten               WPC World Assembly the World Peace Conference
namese Peace Committee and this              to use — nuclear weapons in possible conflicts                                       April 8-13, 2008, Caracas, Venezuela
country, which has shown us such hos-        with members of the concerned treaty.
pitality and which constitutes a symbol           Up to now, various regions of the world have
in the anti-imperialist struggle. We         been declared nuclear weapon free. Latin Amer-
trust that the presence of the WPC in        ica and the Carribbean (treaty of Tlatelolco), the
Vietnam will, to the best of our power,      South Pacific (treaty of Raratonga), for instance,
contribute to our solidarity with the dif-   although discussions continue with the big five
ficult struggle it is waging today.          nuclear weapons states. The treaty of Pelindaba
     One year and a half has passed          for Africa was accepted by the USA but under
since the last meeting of the Executive      conditions, and the United Kingdom doesn’t
Committee, held in Brasilia, Brazil.         want to include Diego Garcia, an island in the
Significant developments have taken          Indian Ocean that London rents to Washington,
place, which confirm our assessment          or should I say to the Pentagon. The treaty of
and underscore the need for the WPC to       Bangkok, declaring South-East Asia nuclear
contribute to the upswing in the peace       weapon free, was not signed by the big five.
movement and the peoples’ struggles.              United Nations accept the status of an “in-
Humanity as a whole is facing the            dependent nation free of nuclear weapons” by
accelerated aggressiveness of the im-        recognising the official declaration by Mongolia
perialist system. Its concerted effort to    in this field. Five ex-Soviet countries in Cen-
secure its domination is accompanied         tral Asia declared themselves nuclear weapon
by an exacerbation and an upsurge in         free. Antarctica, at the bottom of the ocean, is                    The World Peace Council (WPC) held a successful Executive Committee meeting on
rivalries over markets and for geopoliti-    nuclear free.                                                  November 19-20 in the capital of Vietnam, Hanoi. The WPC expresses its gratitude to the
cal and geo-strategic dominance. Little           This long introduction just wants to explain              Vietnam Peace Committee for its generosity in hosting the WPC Executive Committee.
by little, this struggle is embracing all    that the idea of nuclear weapon free zone is well                   Major item of the agenda, amongst other topics, was holding the next Assembly
continents. It is becoming particularly      known in diplomatic and political circles. It has              of the WPC, as the highest decision making body of the Organisation. The Executive
acute in regions of strategic importance     quite a history as a non-proliferation instrument              Committee decided unanimously to accept the readiness of our Member Organisa-
for economic and geopolitical control,       alongside the general treaties of NPT, or the                  tion from Venezuela, COSI (Committee for International Solidarity) to host the WPC
such as the Balkans, Eurasia and Af-         Test Ban Treaty for instance.                                  Assembly, and announced the holding of other events around the World Assembly
rica. The huge accumulation of profits            Critical observers object that all the easy               of the WPC for the dates of 8th -13th April, 2008, in Venezuela; declaring for one
from the predatory exploitation of the       regions are now covered by such a treaty. But                  week Caracas the “World Capital of Peace and the anti-imperialist struggle.”
working people and countries leads to        that the rest of the world consists of really hot                   Under the above slogan, the WPC is going to hold its (outgoing) Executive
the need for the imperialists to seek new    spots, with either countries that possess nuclear              Committee Meeting on the 8th April, its Assembly on 9th and 10th April, and an
markets in other countries with more in-     arms or regions of high tension where the big                  open, broad World Peace Conference on 11th and 12th April. The 13th April will
tensive exploitation and robbing of their    powers defend important geopolitical and eco-                  be dedicated to the peoples who are in struggle for the sovereignty against foreign
natural and human resources. These           nomic interests.                                               interference, coinciding with the 6th year of the restoration of peoples’ power after
huge rivalries lead to an intensification         Indeed, a treaty for the Middle East would                the attempted coup d’état in Venezuela in 2002.
of exploitation of the working people in     not only be an agreement on non-proliferation                       The WPC appreciates the disposition of the Venezuelan government and its
all countries and to a general offensive     but, in the first place, an agreement on disarma-              institutions which warmly welcomed the decision of the WPC. The Secretariat of the
on popular and democratic rights.            ment, due to the fact that Israel already retains              WPC will work with COSI and the National Preparatory Committee in Venezuela,
     The unprecedented scientific and        nuclear weapons. A thorough and effective veri-                for the successful holding of the WPC events.
technical opportunities that now ex-         fication regime should be put in place in order                     The WPC is proud to be able to share the aspirations and struggles of the
ist for mankind to meet human needs          to create political confidence. Other political and            peoples of Latin America, and considers the political developments in the region as
conflict with the exploitation and the       military elements are increasing the complexity                very encouraging and promising. By holding our Assembly in Caracas, for the first
law of profit that prevails. Popular         of this issue as there are nuclearised neighbours              time in South America, we write a new chapter in the glorious history of the WPC,
discontent is growing, along with the        like Pakistan, and the general mistrust towards                opening a new phase for the development of the anti-imperialist peace movement
demand for a different policy. The           Iran.                                                          world wide. The WPC is entering the next Assembly in a new period, where we all
inability of the imperialist system to            A treaty on a nuclear weapon free zone                    have to demand more from ourselves. We shall make our WPC stronger, based in
deal with the problems, the impasse it       is in fact a regional security treaty. It cannot               even more countries, more visible and a more useful tool for the coming difficult
is facing and its quest for profit make      be realised out of the blue. In the negotiating                struggles of the world peace movement. Very soon respective materials, web site
it more dangerous.                           process, guarantees have to be produced in                     and invitations shall be issued and sent out.
     Internationally, war already con-       order to respond to all security demands of                         The Organisations which participated in the Executive Committee Meeting in
stitutes an inherent part of develop-        each country concerned. This way of tackling                   Hanoi were the following: Vietnam Peace Committee, Cuban Movement for Peace
ments. The overturning of principles         the security problems of the Middle East is a                  and the sovereignty of the Peoples, Greek Committee for international Détente and
of international law enshrined in the        far better way to de-mine the conflict as it opens             Peace, Committee for International Solidarity (Venezuela), Portuguese Council for
UN Charter is a reality. Militarisation      political perspectives on disarmament and halts                Peace and Cooperation, Mexican Movement for Peace and Development, Movement
is taking on huge dimensions. Military       the negative spiral toward announced wars.                     for Peace and Solidarity (Argentine), Japan Peace Committee, Bangladesh Peace
spending has already exceeded what                The General Conference of the IAEA (Inter-                Council, Brazilian Center for the struggle for Peace and Solidarity of the Peoples,
it was during the cold war. With the         national Atomic Energy Agency) of september                    US Peace Council, Congo Peace Committee, OSPAAAL Spain, All India Peace and
big imperialist powers in the forefront,     2007 passed a resolution on the necessity                      Solidarity Organisations, Syrian Peace Committee, Korean National Peace Commit-
all countries — according to their size      of establishing a nuclear weapon free zone                     tee, German Peace Council, Spanish Committee for the defense of Solidarity and
— are being drawn into the arsenal-          in the Middle East. It invites countries that                  Peace, Sri Lanka Peace Council, Lao Peace and Solidarity Committee, Mongolian
building game, while 30,000 people           haven’t yet subscribed to the non-proliferation                Union for Friendship and Peace and AAPSO as guest.
a day starve to death and half of the        regime to do so. United States and Israel voted                                                                          The Secretariat of WPC
                    continued on page 2      against. Except for Ireland that voted in favour,                                                                            30 November 2007
                                                                          continued on page 11
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     VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                 Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )   W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




                                               US-Led Joint Naval Exercise in the Bay of Bengal:
Editorial                      (from p. 1)     Imperial War Game in South Asia
world’s population subsists on less            Hasan Tarique Chowdhury                                  it may even instigate a new cold war in this           sue. Perhaps they are not so much concerned
than two dollars a day. This reality is        Secretary, Bangladesh Peace Council                      region and also may accelerate the arms race           about the importance of natural resources


                                               W
so harsh and so blatant that it renders                     e can recall our history when US            among the neighbouring countries of South              and geo-political location of Bangladesh!
yet more imperative the need to create                      Navy’s Seventh Fleet came to the            Asia. They even consider this Naval Drill              But the patriotic and peace loving people of
a counterweight to imperialism so as to                     Bay of Bengal in 1971 to defeat             as the first step to establish an Asian NATO           Bangladesh are very much concerned about
harness its aggressiveness and help to         the Liberation War of Bangladesh. It was                 (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) aimed             the intention of this war game in the Bay of
overthrow it. The World Peace Council          the time when this fleet tried to intimidate             to encircle China.                                     Bengal. They considered that US imperialism
is called on to contribute to this struggle,   India as it fought Pakistan along with Ban-                  While this is the evaluation of Indian             has become desperate to increase its global
especially today when any illusions that       gladeshi freedom fighter in a war that led to            Security experts and left political parties,           plundering and to establish its military he-
had been created in the past are being         Bangladesh’s birth. It was the period when               what would the Bangladeshi security experts            gemony all over the world. Its real target is
dispersed by reality.                          Indian foreign policy upheld the principles of           say? Will they welcome again the seventh               to expand its arms business and enhance its
    We do not wish to repeat the political     Non Align Movement and followed the path                 fleet? Will they hail the impending arms race          military dominance by instigating conflicts
assessments we have debated in the past        towards self-reliance. But now, the scenario             in South Asian Region caused by the recent             and arms race among the countries of Asia
many times as regards developments,            has been changed.                                        Indian foreign policy?                                 and Pacific region. It also wants to utilize
but rather would focus our discussion on           Ironically, last September, the same                     Although Bangladesh Peace Council                  the natural resources, port and geo-political
the main spheres in which we are called        Seventh Fleet was back in the same waters,               and left political parties of Bangladesh con-          location of Bangladesh for the same purpose.
upon to take action:                           equipped with a second aircraft carrier, a               demned this war game in the Bay of Bengal.             So, the voice has been raised by the people
    The three wars unleashed to date           nuclear submarine and scores of fighter jets in          But, interestingly, the political parties who          of Bangladesh, India and Pakistan and the
by NATO and the USA in Yugoslavia,             the biggest U.S. naval assembly in 36 years.             see themselves as a pioneer of Liberation War          people of this region to build up the united
Afghanistan and Iraq, Israel’s war on          According to Reuters, the fleet anchored                 of 1971 and protector of sovereignty of Ban-           resistance against this aggressive conspiracy
Lebanon, the threats made regarding an         under cloudy skies in the middle of the Bay              gladesh remained silent over this critical is-         of US imperialism. n
immediate attack on Iran and the dozens        of Bengal was the US aircraft carrier Kitty
of interventions on all continents open        Hawk, which was involved in the war against
the way for dangerous situations to arise.     Iraq in 2003, while INS Viraat, India’s lone
The consequences of all this are already       aircraft carrier, sailed alongside.                                                DECLARATION OF ANSBACH
influencing not only the countries di-             This event clearly signals that by depart-
rectly affected but also entire regions.       ing from Nehruvian foreign policy, the pres-                   On 24 Nov. 2007, people from the Czech Republic, Italy, the USA, and various regions
Despite the increased reaction to this         ent government of India is trying to establish                 of Germany gathered at the invitation of the Ansbach Alliance for Peace [Ansbacher
and the resistance of the peoples, the US,     a closer military ties with USA and also to put                Friedens — bündnis] for the first Ansbach Peace Conference. The following declara-
NATO and their allies are continuing on        itself in the strategic orbit of USA, which is a               tion was adopted:
the same path. This has been at the cost       long desired agenda of USA. This new trend
of hundreds of thousands of lives and          of Indian foreign policy has been seriously                          We vigorously oppose the use of the Urlas site and the Katterbach barracks by
tremendous destruction. Participation          criticised by the cross section of intellectu-                 the US military. What is being implemented is the stationing of a reinforced “aviation
in the war in Afghanistan is on the rise       als, security analysts and the left political                  brigade” (airborne troops) with more than a hundred combat helicopters, which can
with the inclusion of non-NATO member          parties of India rather than welcomed by the                   be deployed as a rapid-reaction force at the disposal of EUCOM [the U.S. European
countries. The situation in that country       common people.                                                 Command] within hours. Contrary to widely-made claims, it is not merely a matter
is deteriorating. The only sector that             After a tense face-off with the UPA gov-                   of improving the housing situation for the U.S. soldiers already stationed here and
is developing is that of opium poppy           ernment on the Indo-US nuclear deal, the                       their families. It is about creating a self-sufficient U.S. military base that can supply
cultivation, which grew by 50 percent          Left parties of India are hitting the streets this             itself and is completely independent of the region economically.
from 2004 to 2006, meeting 93 percent          week in a nationwide mass campaign against                           The Aviation Brigade from Ansbach is intended to be deployed within hours
of the world market demand for opiates,        the US led joint naval exercises involving                     to any trouble spot in the EUCOM area of command in the future. The combat
according to the pertinent UN report.          India, Australia and Singapore. According                      helicopters from Ansbach have already participated in the U.S. war of aggression
Thousands of civilians, including women        to September 2 report of PTI, the four par-                    against Iraq in 2003, in violation of international law. This is a violation of Article
and children, have been killed by NATO         ties kick-started two simultaneous ‘jathas’                    26 of the German Constitution and of the law of nations. It is up to Germany's leg-
troops. According to assessments made          (processions) on 4th September 2007 from                       islatures, governments, and government agencies to prevent this building project
by the General Secretary of NATO, it           Chennai and Kolkata to protest the naval war                   (Supplementary Agreement to the NATO Status of Forces Agreement, “2 plus 4”
does not look as if this war will end even     games besides organising separate campaigns                    treaty, etc.)
in the next ten years.                         against the “anti-people” policies of the gov-                     Even according to the tendentious poll of the citizenry that has already been
    The situation in Iraq is worsening         ernment. Indian Left parties are of the view                   conducted, there was no majority in favor of the planned expansion. Therefore, we
and the war’s consequences, along with         that the joint exercises in the Bay of Bengal                  demand a referendum, in advance of which all the U.S. Army's plans must be made
the plans to attack Iran, are spread-          from September 4-9 was a major step towards                    available to the people.
ing over the entire region. Despite            India joining a “strategic security coopera-                       At this conference, we agreed to expand and link more closely the resistance
the nearly universal opposition of the         tion” with the US, Australia and Japan. The                    in Germany and all of Europe to foreign military bases and military infrastructure
peoples, including the people of the           ‘jathas’, led by CPI(M) General Secretary                      from which wars are planned and waged. Specifically, this means supporting our
USA, and despite the robust resistance         Prakash Karat from Chennai and his CPI                         friends in Vicenza, Italy in their opposition to the expansion of the U.S. base there,
of the Iraqi people and the demand             counterpart, A. B. Bardhan from Kolkata, had                   and in the Czech Republic in their opposition to the installation of the U.S. mis-
for the withdrawal of the occupation           coincided with the joint exercises of India                    sile system. The participants in the Ansbach Peace Conference support the people
troops, neither the Bush administration        had have with the navies of the US, Japan,                     of Ansbach in their struggle against further militarization of their home, and for a
nor the “Democratic” opposition has            Australia and Singapore which concluded                        civilian future for it.
made any commitment to withdraw. The           in Visakhapatnam on September eight. Not                           Together, we want to resist the increasing militarization of Europe.
USA, NATO and the EU are preparing             only the political parties, the high ranking
to intervene in Iran. The more general         security experts of India considers this ex-                                                                                       Hannelore Tölke
economic and military importance of the        ercise as “a recipe for greater instability in                                                             German Network Against Military Facilities
                      continued on page 3      the Asia-Pacific region.” According to them




                                               President:                                                                           Organizational Members of the Secretariat:
                                                  Orlando Fundora Lopez
                                                    Movimiento Cubano por la Paz y la Soberanía                                       • Congo Peace Committee
                                                    de los Pueblos (MOVPAZ)                                                           • Movimiento Cubano por la Paz y la Soberanía de los
                                                                                                                                        Pueblos (MOVPAZ)
  World Peace Council                          General Secretary:                                                                     • Egyptian Peace Committee
                         10 Othonos Str.         Thanasis Pafilis
                                                                                                                                      • French Movement for Peace
                 10557 Athens, Greece               Greek Committee for International Détente
                                                    and Peace (EEDYE)                                                                 • Greek Committee for International Détente and Peace (EEDYE)
                       info@wpc-in.org                                                                                                • Japan Peace Committee
                                                    Member of European Parliament
                       www.wpc-in.org                                                                                                 • Mexican Movement for Peace and Development (MOMPADE)
                 Tel: +30-210-3316326          Executive Secretary:                                                                   • Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation (CPPC)
                 Fax:+30-210-3224302             Iraklis Tsavdaridis                                                                  • Senegalese Movement for Peace
                                                    Greek Committee for International Détente                                         • US Peace Council (USPC)
                                                    and Peace (EEDYE)                                                                 • Vietnam Peace Committee (VPC)
PEACE MESSENGER                                                                                                                                                                              Page 3
       VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                  Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )       W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




EDITORIAL: Report to the WPC Executive Committee                                                           attention focused on outer space.                          encountering the people’s massive resistance
                                                                                        (from p. 2)            There have been certain important devel-               in Japan, which the WPC salutes warmly. We
Eurasian region has drawn the interest of all     with East Jerusalem its capital.                         opments in the recent period, such as:                     will continue being active against the war
the large powers. Putin’s visit to Iran and the       • We express yet again our solidarity with               The NATO Summit meeting that took                      plans in the region and the re-militarization
Caspian region as well as the joint communi-      Cuba and demand the immediate implemen-                  place in Riga in November 2006 officially                  of Japan.
qué, which is in the form of an agreement to      tation of the UN General Assembly Resolu-                ratified the organization’s transformation                      One important factor in this situation is
refrain from using the Caspian for an attack      tion on the lifting of the blockade.                     into a global gendarme. It formalized its co-              the expansion of the network of military bases
on any country, are clear indications of this.        • We denounce the military and oppres-               operation with Australia, New Zealand and                  all over the world by the USA — but also by
It is obvious that if the war on Iran now be-     sive regime in Burma and the recent brutal               Japan and officially abolished its 6,000 mile              other powers: The huge movement against
ing planned is actually started it will have a    crackdown of the unrest, demanding the                   limit of activity. Thus, it is now preparing               the bases that is developing worldwide is
huge impact, with the danger of it spreading      respect of democratic and civil rights and               operationally to intervene all over the world.             promising.
over the region.                                  liberties and free elections.                            The dispatch of troops to the Middle East and                   With regard to nuclear arms, imperialist
     The tension on the Iraqi- Turkish border         • We express our serious concern about               Africa is already under discussion. A further              propaganda is attempting to mislead world
and the preparations under way for an incur-      the situation in Pakistan, where we observe              expansion of NATO with the inclusion of the                public opinion concerning Iran. But as a
sion into northern Iraq are likewise directly     one more setback in the rights of the people             Western Balkans (Albania and FYROM),                       matter of fact, it is the US — mainly — as
related to the war there and would exacerbate     to determine freely their future, under the              the Caucasus (Georgia) and Ukraine is being                well as other nuclear powers that are work-
the situation. The stagnation in Palestine        recent state of emergency and the attack on              prepared, thus tightening the noose around                 ing intensively to produce the so- called
with the attempt being made to find solutions     the people                                               Russia.                                                    “smart” nuclear weapons and a new genera-
falling within the framework of imperial-                                                                                                                             tion of nuclear arms. In the same spirit we
ist interests and the uncertain situation in                                                                                                                          denounce the Indo-US nuclear agreement
Lebanon show that implementation of the                                                                                                                               and salute the massive protests in the In-
NATO plan for the “Democratization of the
Middle East” would involve all the countries
                                                                   WPC WORLD ASSEMBLY                                                                                 dian society.
                                                                                                                                                                           The WPC reaffirms its clear and prin-
in the region.                                                                                       AND                                                              cipled position in favour of the complete
     The great battle for control over wealth-                                                                                                                        abolition of all nuclear weapons in the world.
producing resources is now being brought to
Africa as well. The ground is being prepared
                                                      THE WORLD PEACE CONFERENCE                                                                                      At the same time we cannot close our eyes
                                                                                                                                                                      on who is the main and real threat against
for fresh interventions and the dispatch of                                                                                                                           peace and security, who used first nuclear
troops. A decision has already been taken to                                                                                                                          weapons and who dropped the commitment
send 20,000 troops to Chad. Developments                                                                                                                              not to make use of the first strike. We cannot
in Africa show that it is soon to become the                                                                                                                          equal the responsibility of the aggressors and
next victim of the rivalries of powers that,                                                                                                                          the victims. We are not in favour of nuclear
along with everything else, dream of re-                                                                                                                              tests and we consider them harmful, but at
colonising it.                                                                                                                                                        the same we condemn the “double moral
     Although eight years have passed, the                                                                                                                            and standards” of the US administration,
consequences of the war in Yugoslavia have                                                                                                                            which considers some of the states which
caused fresh tensions in the Balkans. One                                                                                                                             hold nuclear weapons as allies and others
main problem is the independence issue in                                                                                                                             as terrorists
Kosovo, which will give rise to new clashes.                                                                                                                               Already from early in the nineties a sys-
There are already occupation forces in the                                                                                                                            tematic attempt had begun to revise the statu-
Balkans deployed in Bosnia- Herzegovina                                                                                                                               tory principles of the UN and of international
and Kosovo, while new military bases are                                                                                                                              law as it took shape after the World War Two.
being built.                                                                                                                                                          The attempt is aimed at leaving the imprint
     For the WPC, the peace movement                                                                                                                                  of today’s new world order on the UN and on
and the other social movements, stopping                                                                                                                              all international organizations. At the same
new wars and interventions along with the                                                                                                                             time, international agreements that moved in
withdrawal of occupation forces are mat-                                                                                                                              a positive direction have been undermined or
ters of high priority. At the same time, we                                                                                                                           denounced. Unfortunately, these objectives
must highlight every type of intervention,                                                                                                                            were met to a large degree in the UN reform
such as the unacceptable continuation of                                                                                                                              of 2005 (details attached).
the blockade on Cuba, despite the most                                                                                                                                     The overturning of principles of inter-
recent resolution taken by the UN General                                                                                                                             national law is expressed in many ways, for
Assembly, a resolution that was even nearly
unanimous.
                                                       April 8-13, 2008, Caracas, Venezuela                                                                           example:
                                                                                                                                                                           — the adoption of an “European Consti-
     We could also mention the attempt to                                                                                                                             tution” (or reform treaty), in which pre- emp-
overthrow Chavez in Venezuela, the sanc-                                                                                                                              tive war would be official EU policy.
tions and measures imposed on any coun-                The rise and the intensity of imperialist               The EU is forming battle groups and                         — the elimination of boundaries for ac-
tries that refuse to submit to imperialist        aggressiveness and imperialism’s need to                 planning to set up new naval groups for rapid              tion by NATO and its transformation into a
barbarity, and the stirring up of ethnic and      impose its domination over the world are                 intervention. It is preparing to send fresh                global organization (resolution taken at the
religious differences so as to create excuses     leading to intensified militarization and to             troops to replace NATO troops in Kosovo.                   Riga Summit.)
to intervene.                                     an increase in armaments. The struggle of                The new French President has asked for a                        — the re-arming of Japan and the attempt
     Particularly in the case of Venezuela,       imperialist powers to divide up the markets,             new aircraft carrier and the Italian govern-               to revise article 9 of its constitution
we would like to express our support to the       along with the change in the balance of                  ment has agreed to the expansion of the US                      — the renouncing of the principle of non-
Bolivarian process backed by the masses           power at the beginning of the nineties, has              base in Vicenza.                                           intervention in the domestic affairs of other
of the Venezuelan people, trying to deepen        literally created a vicious circle. Whoever                  The USA and NATO are proceeding with                   countries, a matter that has even reached the
democracy and people’s participation against      entertained illusions about an arms reduction            the implementation of the missile defence                  point of a “Democracy Fund” being set up to
all kind of provocations by the ones who          and decreased militarization has been sadly              shield. This is actually an offensive system               fund such interference.
are loosing their privileges and by foreign       disappointed.                                            that has triggered reactions from Russia and                    This new state of affairs means that the
interventions.                                         The new state of imperialist domination             other countries and, mainly, the peoples’                  WPC must reconfirm its support for the
     The WPC expresses its solidarity with all    has had an impact worldwide. The USA                     resistance. There have been substantial                    statutory principles of the UN, its critical
the peoples who resist. We consider that each     and NATO are escalating militarization and               mobilizations in the Czech Republic and                    stance vis-a-vis the Security Council and its
people has the inalienable right to choose its    armaments so as to carry out their aggres-               Poland. Movements in the EU oppose it                      resolutions, its refusal to accept NATO and
own path and of course to fight against any       sive plans. The rest of the large imperialist            universally.                                               other military bodies as guarantors of peace,
type of intervention and occupation. We are       powers do the same so that they can take                     Revision of the constitution Article 9 is                                       continued on page 11
struggling:                                       part in the dividing up of the markets under
     • For the immediate withdrawal of the        better terms. Thus, the EU, in cooperation               FOR A NUCLEAR WEAPON FREE ZONE ...                         change their defensive posture of “no war on
occupation troops from Iraq,                      with NATO but also autonomously, is estab-                                                          (from p. 2)     Iran” into an offensive and positive campaign
     • For an end to the war in Afghanistan       lishing new military forces. It is upgrading             taken into account in discussions for a treaty.            for political settlement in the Middle East.
and the withdrawal of NATO troops                 its arms industry. Russia is proceeding                  This very fact could open new opportunities                World public opinion could pressure political
     • For the withdrawal of NATO and Euro-       with the production of a new generation                  in Teheran to offer verifiable guarantees that             leaders to work in this direction.
pean troops from the Balkans and the Turkish      of weaponry and with military cooperation                their nuclear efforts are merely civil. For Israel,            The central question remains, however, as
troops from Cyprus.                               with other countries. Japan is rearming and              the fundamental advantage lies in the regional             to whether the Western political leaders dare,
     • We are opposed to the dispatch of          revising its constitution. And other countries           security treaty itself, the subscribing countries          can or are allowed to act in a direction that is
troops to Chad and demand the withdrawal          are following this same path for various                 of which engage for pacific relations amongst              the opposite of the actual real daily politics:
of the foreign troops from Africa                 reasons. Smaller countries either because                each other. Could Israel ever dream of a better            continuing to isolate adversaries, always giv-
     • We reject any sort of military interven-   they participate in imperialist coalitions or            guarantee for its security preoccupations? Of              ing green light to friends, and saving their own
tion in Iran on whatever pretext                  because they feel threatened. The result is,             course, this whole scenario is totally impossible          nuclear strike capability.
     • Expressing our solidarity with the Pal-    however, that today armaments have even                  without a fundamental solution for Palestine: an               Those who are working for a sustainable
estinian people, we consider that the sole just   gone beyond cold war levels. Monstrous new               independent viable state.                                  peace will one way or another have to change
solution is an independent Palestinian state      weapons systems are being developed, with                    The peace movements over the world could               that policy. n
Page                                                                                                                       PEACE MESSENGER
       VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                    Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )   W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




   Summary Report on the World Peace Council Regional Continental Meeting of the Americas
                                                    Held at the National Assembly of the Venezuelan Parliament
                                                                   Caracas, Venezuela — August 25th and 27th 2007


T
        he World Peace Council (WPC) regional           The afternoon session centred on the                 strengthening peace forces in combating US             Central to this movement is the fight against
        continental meeting of the Americas was     practical tasks facing the WPC. Delegates                imperialism in hemispherical revolutionary             US military academies.
        held in Caracas Venezuela August 25th       heard a financial report, discussed the need             struggles now under way in Central and South               Bertaccini rejected the “fight against ter-
and 27th 2007 at the National Assembly of           for more communication and organizational                America.                                               rorism” as a false struggle. A struggle she said
the Venezuelan parliament. The meeting was          efforts by the regional coordination, dis-                   Special emphasis was placed on the lead-           “that deflects imperialist, first and foremost
called to discuss the current world and regional    cussed questions of language in producing                ing role that Venezuela is playing in the world.       US, complicity in the militarisation of the
political situation, to establish a framework for   the Peace Messenger and stressed the need                Fundora said “The role of Venezuela is impor-          world economies.” She called fro a special
continued work within the WPC in the coming         to minimize costly travel to meetings were               tant because it signifies a break with chains of       WPC meeting to discuss the politics of “US
year and to begin preparations for the WPC          electronic communications such as email,                 imperialism.” All the actions of Venezuela are         terrorism.” This she said “will form the basis
world summit to be convened in April 2008.          web sites, bulletin boards and web conference            of peace, health and education for the peoples         for a WPC policy against US terrorism.”
     Venezuelan Comité de Solidaridad Interna-      calls could be more effectively utilized.                of Central and South America.                              Bertaccini closed by saying that “the
cional (COSI) hosted the meeting which was held         In the evening a dinner was hosted by                    “The requirement to struggle against im-           only way forward is to work with all peace
in a spirit of revolutionary upsurge advancing      David Velásquez Interior Minister for Popu-              perialism is of first rate importance” the WPC         movements. The Central American political
within the Central and South American coun-         lar Participation and Social Protection. The             President noted. He indicated that because             situation is complex but what they all have in
tries. In conjunction with the WPC meetings         dinner was attended by several deputies of               of the Venezuelan revolution imperialism is            common is the fight for social justice.”
the 40th Anniversary celebrations of the World      the Venezuelan National Assembly and the                 losing its position of world wide domination
Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY) were          Andean Parliament, executive members of                  and that peace forces are gaining ground               Dominican Republic
also being held in Caracas. This provided a         the Communist Party of Venezuela and COSI                and are now becoming the “leading force”                   Juan Pablo Acosta García opened his
youthful and enthusiastic spirit throughout the     members and peace supporters.                            in the world. Venezuela has the same agenda            remarks by acknowledging the special guest
meetings. Youth play an important and leading                                                                as the world wide struggle for peace and is            from Uruguay, Paraguay and Chile. García
role in the socialist revolution in Venezuela and   Main Plenum Discussions                                  central in drawing new forces and alliances            summarized the situation in the Caribbean
in the broader and growing international peace          The morning session of the WPC meet-                 in this struggle.                                      and said much of the difficulty with the
and anti-imperialist movement.                      ings was characterized by assessments of the                 Fundora emphasized the relevance of                struggle for peace in this region is due to
                                                    world and regional peace forces and the role             having the WPC meetings in Caracas. This is            geography and languages.
DAY ONE                                             of these forces in the revolutionary social-             of particular importance in the face of Ven-               He noted that of particular difficulty is
                                                    ist movements sweeping Central and South                 ezuelan President Chavez’s announcement                “freedom of the press.” He noted the critical
    COSI organized two tours for WPC del-           America. Special emphasis was placed on                  that the Venezuelan people will host the event.        situation in Haiti and noted that currently there
egates. The first explored some of the revolu-      Venezuela’s role as the leading anti-impe-               Fundora said “we are obligated to ensure suc-          is no WPC member from Haiti. Puerto Rico has
tionary changes occurring in Caracas. Visiting a    rialist force and the need to strengthen the             cess because of Chavez’s support.”                     had a peace council that has existed for many
barrio in Caracas and touring a state subsidized    anti-imperialist fight back.                                                                                    years and which is being re-activated.
food distribution centre, a medical clinic, a                                                                Mexico                                                     Noting the “completely different” cultur-
computer centre for youth and children. The         Venezuela                                                    Manuel Terraza Guerrero acting chair               al realities between Haiti and the Dominican
tour was conducted by the local communist               Fermin Toro President of COSI opened                 for the WPC meeting summarized the role                Republic the need to fond new ways to work is
party committee for socialist construction. The     the main session with special greetings of               of newly emerging forms of peace struggle              critical for the development and strengthen-
WPC delegates then visited a local community        solidarity with all the regional struggles for           on South America. He said “in Brazil and               ing of the peace movement in this region.
television station where we were interviewed.       peace and social justice. He had special                 Argentina the peace movement is advanc-                    García called for a regional continental
The community television and arts is enjoy-         thanks for Hugo Morales for his help in the              ing because of these newly formed peace                meeting of the Caribbean, USA, Mexico, Cuba
ing growing state funding to compete with the       arrangements. He stressed the pride and                  groups.” After 50 years of the Cuban revolu-           and Canada to strengthen the revolutionary
private information sources. We then visited a      importance of the fraternal relationship with            tion in facing different processes of change,          struggles of Central and South America.
very popular community radio station where          the WPC and COSI. Toro noted that condi-                 the strengthening of the Cuban peace move-
we were interviewed again. There was great          tions are similar in all countries and forms             ment is of critical importance as it forms             Brazil
interest shown in the WPC delegation and the        the basis and conditions which unite all op-             the basis of the North American continental                Rubens Diniz began his comments
statements and positions of the WPC.                pressed peoples and is the critical factor in            struggle for peace. It is the bulwark in the           bringing attention to the importance of the
                                                    the anti-imperialist fight back.                         anti-imperialist fight back and directly chal-         struggles of revolutionary socialism underway
DAY TWO                                                                                                      lenges the false notion of the permanence of           in Venezuela. He emphasized the importance
                                                    Cuba                                                     US imperialism.                                        of the international defence of the socialist
    Another tour was organized by COSI and               Orlando Fundora President of WPC sum-                   Guerrero noted the difficulties in advanc-         gains in Venezuela as part of the anti-impe-
the regional committee of the Communist Party       marized the meetings of the WPC in Brazil                ing the Mexican peace movement but said                rialist struggle.
of Venezuela to a small fishing village in the      and commented on the international military              “Mexico is finding new forms of struggle to                Diniz commented on the “different forms
Venezuelan National Park located close to Porta     situation. Fundora noted the politics sur-               overcome this situation.” He indicated that            of propaganda” that the imperialists are as-
Cruz which is approximately 370 kilometres          rounding energy and the growing connection               Mexican peace forces are building alliances            sembling as the centre of its fight against
east of Caracas to attend and hear Venezuelan       between oil consumption and the increasing               between political parties and citizen move-            socialist gains in Venezuela. He said that
President Hugo Chavez address the Venezuelan        belligerence of US imperialism. Fundora said,            ments and is working with children’s and               “fighting for peace is also a social justice
nation in his popular Sunday afternoon ad-          “Imperialism is soaking up the scientists of             doctor’s groups.                                       fight. The fight for peace is a continuation of
dresses and question and answer sessions.           the world and putting them to task of develop-               “On the whole,” the Moviemiento Mexi-              struggle and not one that can emerge only as
    The Venezuelan President greeted the            ing new weapons and bio-fuel technologies.”              cano por la Paz President said “there are              new conflict arises,” commented Diniz. He
WPC delegates one by one and read out the           The question of bio-fuels Fundora said “puts             more positives than negatives.”                        was drawing consideration to the world wide
organizational affiliation. Chavez then pro-        the question of food production versus energy                                                                   attention that the war in Iraq first aroused
ceeded to offer to host the 2008 WPC confer-        for cars centre stage.” (The Canadian Peace              Argentina                                              and then faded. This he said is of “particular
ence in Caracas with state support. This an-        Congress notes that for Canadian farmers this                 Rina Bertaccini summarized the previ-             interest to peace forces.”
nouncement was welcomed enthusiastically            question is emerging in the form of the fight            ous 2 years of peace work in Argentina as                  He raised the need to find new ways to
by WPC delegates. It was emphasized by the          for the Canadian Wheat Board and corporate               characterised by a dominant anti-imperial-             maintain and continue the continuity for
WPC Executive Secretary that this offer will        control of Canadian agricultural production,             ist content. She commented that Argentina              the struggle for peace. He said “precisely
go along way to ensure the success of the           which will be diverted from food production              is pursuing building alliances with other              because there is an emergence of an anti-im-
April 2008 WPC conference. All delegates            to more profitable energy production.)                   continental peace forces and seeing great              perialist block of non-belligerent states that
were encouraged to begin immediate prepara-              The WPC President also warned of the                progress in the anti-imperialist content of            within this emerging block can this continuity
tions for their organizations attendance.           issue of water and the control by the large              this work.                                             can be found.”
                                                    trans-national water corporations. Imperial-                  Bertaccini said “the founding in 1947 of              He urged the WPC to find new ways to
DAY THREE                                           ism he said “is trying to monopolize the fresh           the Argentinean peace movement with the                build solidarity with other peace forces and
                                                    water of the world.” The CPC points to the               WPC was large and broad in scope,” she                 agreed that Chavez in the framework of the
    The WPC meeting of the regional con-            Montebello SPP meetings in August which                  continued that given the current global reali-         Venezuelan revolution “tasks that were pre-
tinental Americas was convened at 9:00am            were in part to discuss Canada’s capitulation            ties “the original peace forces were correct in        viously prohibitive to the international peace
Monday August 27th, 2007 in the National            for the bulk export of fresh water to the US.            their anti-imperialist linkages to peace.”             movement can now occur.” He stressed the
Assembly of the Venezuelan Parliament. Two               NATO poses a threat to world peace.                      The importance of a conscious struggle            need to emphasize neo-colonialism and elevate
sessions were held. The morning session             Fundora made special emphasis that the                   against the enemies of peace is a requirement          to greater visibility on the WPC agenda.
heard greetings and messages of solidarity          sharpening European situation is due to the              of the anti-imperialist fight back Bertaccinin
from all the organizations. Canada presented        aggressive stance of US-NATO interference in             argues. She emphasized the need to overcome            Canada
our official greeting (see Appendix A for full      the domestic affairs of European countries.              financial impediments to WPC work and to                   Canada reported briefly on the current
text) which was well received. The discus-               Fundora commented on the re-establish-              find new allies of peace.                              political situation in Canada with the minority
sions focused on the international situation        ment of the Canadian Peace Congress as an                     In Argentina and South America it is very         Conservative government led by PM Steven
and the anti-imperialist fight back and the         important milestone and emphasized the im-               clear the direction that the peace movement            Harper as the leading force in the militariza-
emergence of the world wide revolutionary           portance of cooperation between continental              is taking. It is one with a strong anti-impe-          tion of Canada. It was noted that the energy
socialist movement currently being led by           organizations such as the US Peace Council,              rialist content. The struggle to halt foreign          policies of the Harper neo-con government is
Hugo Chavez and the revolutionary socialist         Canadian Peace Congress, MOVPAZ, Ca-                     military bases, primarily US military bases,           the new central issue facing the peace forces.
forces in Central and South America.                ribbean Peace organizations as essential in              is a reflection of the anti-imperialist content.                                 continued on page 11
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       VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )   W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




                                Canadian Public Opinion Solidly Against the
                                       US-NATO War in Afghanistan
Don Currie                                      largest arms suppliers in Europe. Karl Heinz             the Canadian military. O’Connor has been               largest civil society organization in Canada,
Canadian Peace Congress                         Schreiber, a Canadian lobbyist for Airbus,               replaced by the current Defense Minister Pe-           rank and file members and supporters of the



C
                                                and who is presently awaiting extradition to             ter McKay, also implicated indirectly in the           New Democratic, the Canadian Peace Alli-
        anadian public opinion has swung        Germany where he faces corruption charges,               Airbus scandal. The hearings are not over.             ance and the Canadian Peace Congress , the
        decisively against the Afghanistan      is alleged to have funneled money from Franz                 With scandal and falling public support            Communist Party and the Greens to defeat
        war policy of the Conservative Gov-     Joseph Strauss former Chancellor of Bavaria              dogging the Conservative Government, the               the war policies of the Harper Conservative
ernment of Prime Minister Stephen Harper.       and head of Airbus, during the 1980’s to bring           only way the Harper Government can remain              Government.
Rising casualties among Canadian troops         Mulroney to power and back his campaign for              in power is disunity at the polls among pro-               Peace demonstrations calling for an
deployed to the Kandahar region of Afghani-     a North American Free Trade Agreement                    peace voters in the next federal election              end to the war were held across Canada
stan, revelations of torture of Afghan de-      (NAFTA). Airbus would then use Canada as                 expected in early 2008. The three opposi-              last October 27 demanding the withdrawal
tainees and the appalling death rate among      a platform to market Airbus weaponry into                tion parties the Liberals, New Democratic              of Canadian troops and a new mobilization
Afghan civilians due to NATO bombing            the US market to compete with large US arms              Party (NDP) and the Bloc Quebecois all                 is beginning for mass demonstrations in
raids has hardened public opposition to the     suppliers. Both Strauss and his employee                 have foreign policy positions formally op-             March 2008. Increasingly the slogans of the
war. Testimony before the Senate foreign af-    Schreiber were ardent anti-communist op-                 posing the war in Afghanistan and calling              peace movement are demanding the defeat
fairs committee in November 2007 revealed       ponents of the German Democratic Republic                for Canadian withdrawal. Party leaders,                of the Harper Government. If the Harper
ongoing mismanagement of Federal Govern-        (the GDR) and had a big stake in inflaming               Stephane Dion of the Liberals, Jack Layton             Government is to be defeated and Canada’s
ment aid funds assigned to reconstruction       the east-west arms race. The links between               of the NDP and Gilles Duceppe instead of               participation in the war in Afghanistan
projects. The Canadian International De-        arms dealers and Government war policy is                launching a frontal attack bicker and seek             ended unity in action on the streets and at
velopment Agency (CIDA) manages a $100          well known in Canada. Former Canadian De-                electoral advantage instead of forging a               the polls will have to be lifted to a higher
million fund for 2006-2007 part of a total      fense Minister Gordon O’Connor was forced                clear opposition stance towards the Harper             level. That is the challenge confronting
Federal Government package of more than         to step down when it was revealed that he had            Government.                                            the entire democratic left progressive and
$650 million for 2001-2009. The British         been a defense department lobbyist for twenty                All opposition parties are under pressure          peace forces of Canada in the months lead-
based Senalis Council and Canadem, two          years in partnership with high Canadian and              from the 4 million strong organized labour             ing up to the next federal election expected
non-governmental agencies involved with         US-NATO officers attempting to sell arms to              movement, the Council of Canadians, the                early in 2008. n
NGO’s operating in Afghanistan provided
testimony to the Senate hearing complain-
ing that federal government funds are not
reaching the Afghan people.                                                                 Declaration of the 3rd General Assembly of
    The daily cost of the war now exceeds
$3 million CDN and is expected to triple                                                           Peace Association of Turkey
by February 2009 when the Canadian                                                                                      Istanbul — 18 November 2007
Parliamentary mandate to participate in
the NATO led war expires and Canadian
                                                        The Peace Association of Turkey convened its 3rd ordinary assembly on 18 November 2007, in Istanbul. The fol-
forces are supposed to be withdrawn. Prime
                                                        lowing declaration was discussed and accepted unanimously by the delegates from Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir
Minister Harper refuses to commit to hon-
                                                        branches of the association, as the final declaration of the assembly. One of the issues discussed in the assembly
oring the Parliamentary decision and has
                                                        was the preparation for the European Regional Meeting of the World Peace Council and the "Middle East" Con-
appointed former Liberal Foreign Affairs
                                                        ference that will be held on 12-13 January, 2008 in Istanbul.
Minister John Manley, an architect of the
Canadian armed forces combat role in the
                                                                                    Declaration of the 3rd General Assembly of Peace Association of Turkey
NATO-US War to defer a Parliamentary
debate in the hopes of preventing a defeat
                                                          In the 3rd General Assembly of the Peace Association convened on November 18, 2007, it was decided to keep on working
of the Harper Government that would bring
                                                     actively on the following issues:
on a federal election where foreign policy
                                                          1. Peace Association of Turkey declares that the current peace movement should struggle against the worldwide imperialist ag-
and Canada US relations could become the
                                                     gression displayed by the USA and its European collaborators; and that more effort should be spent to prevent Turkey from taking
major issue.
                                                     part in this aggression.
    A media poll conducted from December
                                                          2. The long term fundamental mission of the peace movement in Turkey is to prevent our country to be involved in a war. On
6-9, 2007 by the Strategic Counsel com-
                                                     this account, the Peace Association of Turkey opposes the sending of the Turkish Army outside the borders of the country for any
prising Canada’s most influential newspa-
                                                     reason and demands the return of all Turkish soldiers abroad, back home. For the same reason, Turkey should immediately end
per the Globe and Mail and a major private
                                                     its membership to NATO, all foreign bases should be closed down and the usage and exploitation of the country’s resources by the
television network CTV, showed that if
                                                     imperialist forces should be stopped.
an election were called today 68 percent
                                                          3. Peace Association of Turkey will decipher the reasons and results of the escalation of militarism, which has deep effects on
would vote against the Harper Government.
                                                     the society and also its close links with the imperialist plans; and will lead the peace movement against the militarization of the
In Quebec the anti-Harper opposition soars
                                                     society.
to 82 percent of committed voters who
                                                          4. We will not allow our people and country to be divided by ‘nationalism’ which is an inhuman ideology. The Peace Association
would vote against the Government. Sixty
                                                     of Turkey will provide all its effort to ensure that Turkish and Kurdish peoples live together in peace and to build up a ‘working class
five percent of Canadians believe Canadian
                                                     patriotism’ for peace against imperialism.
forces are in Afghanistan at the behest of
                                                          5. Peace Association of Turkey declares that it will stand against a military intervention of USA and its collaborators to Iran. The
the US Bush administration and because
                                                     Peace Association will provide all its effort to act in solidarity with the people of Iran and to organize our people and intellectuals
Canada is part of NATO. When asked what
                                                     to stand against imperialist aggression.
they considered to be the biggest threat
                                                          6. Peace Association of Turkey aims at collaborating with anti-imperialist forces in Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan and Lebanon that
facing the world 36 percent of Canadians
                                                     are resisting against occupation and war, at giving support to their struggle, at keeping these struggles on the agenda of the public
polled listed climate change and global
                                                     opinion in Turkey and all over the world. The Association will establish closer relations with the forces in the Middle East, which
warming, another 11 percent cited the gap
                                                     resist against occupation and imperialist interventions and will organize campaigns in order to strengthen the fraternity and peace
between rich and poor countries, 14 per-
                                                     between the peoples of our region. It will do its best for the people of Turkey to perceive the developments in Middle East not as an
cent listed lack of respect for human rights,
                                                     issue of foreign policy but as a pretext to get the country involved in war.
11 percent considered American foreign
                                                          7. The imperialist aggression in the Balkans, which resulted in the disintegration of Yugoslavia enters a new phase. The indepen-
policy to be the greatest threat facing the
                                                     dence of Kosovo, as the first step of making up new governments directly controlled by imperialism and managed like a company,
world and only 12 percent mentioned ter-
                                                     will ensure the presence of imperialism in the region and will constitute new obstacles for the establishment of peace. The Peace
rorism. The poll revealed that 39 percent
                                                     Association declares that the presence of imperialism in the Balkans should be ended immediately and that the Association will act
of Canadians think that Canada’s foreign
                                                     in solidarity with Balkan peoples for this aim.
policy is less independent than 50 years
                                                          8. Worldwide nuclear armament continues to threaten humanity. Control over the researches on nuclear weapons of imperialist
ago pointing to Canada’s relationship with
                                                     countries that possess nuclear weapons, especially USA and Israel, is not possible. On the other hand, imperialism imposes sanc-
US as the principal cause of declining
                                                     tions on some countries under the pretext that these countries try to possess nuclear weapons. The Peace Association declares that
prestige internationally. Thirty three cent
                                                     it is dead set against nuclear armament, that the double standard applied in nuclear armament control should be ended and that the
believe the Liberal Chretien Government’s
                                                     international agreements carrying the resolution of eliminating nuclear weapons signed before Soviet Union was dissolved, should
‘no’ to the Bush administrations pressure
                                                     be executed.
to join in the war in Iraq to be Canada’s
                                                          9. Latin America as the centre of people’s governments and ascents against imperialist aggression, gained importance in peace
greatest foreign policy achievement.
                                                     movement throughout the world. Peace Association declares that Cuba, above all, and Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Uru-
    On top of the drop in public support for
                                                     guay, Argentina, Brazil and other popular governments should be supported as well as the process of liberation on the continent.
the Harper war policy is the explosive public
                                                          10. Imperialist expansionism and rampant plunderage of capitalism leads the world to an environmental catastrophe that will
hearings before the Parliamentary Ethics
                                                     have irreversible effects. The Peace Association declares that environmental problems are directly related with the peace movement
Committee investigating the ties between
                                                     throughout the world and that the Association will do its best to stop this process.
former Conservative Prime Minister Mul-
roney and Airbus International one of the
Page                                                                                                                        PEACE MESSENGER
       VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                     Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )   W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




   The European Union: An Obstacle Rather Than An Ally For Peace
                                                               Bert De Belder, Anti-Imperalist League/Stop USA, Belgium



T
        he year 2007 has seen two new initia-        because of US interference, through NATO.                this article, European military forces may                 The EU has adopted a new EU-Africa
        tives by the European Union to get its       More detailed plans for the military build-up            intervene in any country to interfere directly         Joint Strategy at the EU-Africa Summit in
        project back on track, after its Consti-     of the European Union were formulated at the             in internal armed conflicts, under the guise of        December 2007, establishing, among other
tutional Treaty had been rejected in popular         Köln Summit of June 1999, immediately after              combating terrorism. The regions where EU              things, an African Peace and Security Ar-
referenda in France and the Netherlands in           NATO’s war of aggression against Yugoslavia.             forces may want to militarily intervene, are           chitecture. The latter will go hand in hand
mid-2005. The German presidency of the               Six months later, in Helsinki, the objectives            hinted at in a paper of the European Defence           with a Trade and Regional Integration for the
EU (first semester of 2007) ended with the           were set as follows: “being able to deploy by            Agency: “European security interests may be            “improvement of economic governance and
pompous Berlin Declaration, celebrating the          2003 a force of up to 60,000 personnel within            directly or indirectly challenged by tensions          investment climate in Africa” — detailing,
50th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome. And        60 days, and to sustain it on the ground for at          arising not only in the near neighbourhood             just to make things clear, that this concerns
on December 13 in Lisbon, the new ‘Reform            least one year, for the purposes of humanitar-           but also further afield.... By 2025, Europe            “private sector development, supported by
Treaty’ or Lisbon Treaty was signed, to re-          ian and rescue tasks, peacekeeping and crisis            will be externally dependent for 90% of                foreign investments.” New issues such as
place the failed Constitutional Treaty.              management — including peace-making.”                    its oil and 80% of its gas. China and India            energy and migration are high on the agenda.
     What do these two recent documents, the         All of these tasks mean intervention (far)               will drive global energy demand and seek               Of course, the fast-growing relations between
Berlin Declaration and the Lisbon Treaty,            beyond the borders of the European Union.                new sources in Central Asia, Africa and the            China and Africa are a major reason behind
tell us about the issue of peace? “The Eu-           None of them has any connection whatsoever               Middle East.”                                          Europe’s military activities there.
ropean Union wants to promote freedom and            to the defense of the territorial integrity of               The new Treaty of the European Union                   If peace and trade go hand in hand, who
development in the world,” the 2007 Berlin           Europe. The Treaty intends to impose an                  plans the further expansion of this Euro-              stands to benefit? “We all know that where
Declaration says. “We are committed to the           offensive military intervention policy, which            pean Defense Agency (EDA), established in              the EU commits itself, it wants to get advan-
peaceful resolution of conflicts in the world        is in opposition to most Member States’ na-              2004, to implement “any measure needed to              tages”, says Swedish captain Lennart Dan-
and to ensuring that people do not become            tional Constitutions, which stipulate that the           strengthen the industrial and technological            ielson, head of the EU Staff Group at NATO
victims of war, terrorism and violence.”             armed forces are confined to the defense of              base of the defence sector” (TEU, Article              headquarters in Belgium (SHAPE). And he
     The peaceful resolution of conflicts?           the national territory.                                  27-3). In fact, the defense industry has co-           gives the example of the Congo, which “has
European military forces are or have until                Since September 11, 2001, a number of               authored this Treaty article, as nearly all of         a major impact on the economy, because of
recently been active in the US-led imperialist       other aspects related to the so-called ‘war              the thirteen external experts consulted by             the many natural resources in the region. If
wars of aggression and ensuing occupation in         on terror’ are increasingly on the security              the Defence Working Group to prepare the               the region becomes more stabilised, it will be
Yugoslavia, Iraq and Afghanistan. The 27 EU          agenda of the EU. These include repressive               Treaty have connections with the European              beneficial to our trade relations with Africa.”
Member States currently have 44,000 mili-            measures in the form of judicial, financial,             military-industrial complex (BAE Systems,              German Defense Minister Franz-Joseph
tary personnel abroad, either on NATO, UN            police and intelligence action against a                 EADS, Thales and other armaments com-                  Jung echoed this statement by arguing that
or EU missions (respectively taking up 70, 20        number of persons and organisations lumped               panies). The EU itself admits that it wants            “the stability in this region, rich in natural
and 10 percent of the troops). In the Balkans,       together on a supposed “terrorist list,” con-            to support the European defense industry:              resources, would be profitable for German
NATO’s Kosovo force with 15,000 European             taining legitimate people’s, revolutionary and           “While recognising the strategic role of the           industry.” The EU deployed already two
troops can be reinforced by the 5,000 EU             communist forces such as the ELN and the                 European defense related industries, these             military missions in the Democratic Republic
troops based in Bosnia-Herzegovina, while            FARC of Colombia, the New People’s Army                  are left without support in fragmented mar-            of Congo. In 2003, the EU launched Opera-
the EU has also readied its ‘Battle Group’           and the Communist Party of the Philippines,              kets.” At a European Defense Agency confer-            tion Artemis in the East of Congo, and in the
concept, with two brigades of 1,500 troops           the Palestinian Hamas and Popular Front for              ence early this year, EU Commissioner for              period of the July 2006 elections, the EU
each on standby. At its December 2007 Sum-           the Liberation of Palestine, among others.               Enterprise and Industry Günter Verheugen               deployed the EUFOR mission.
mit, the EU approved a 1,800 police force for        EU sanctions are in place against some 26                announced a multiplication of the EU budget                As a conclusion, when it comes to peace,
Kosovo, not only against the will of Serbia,         countries. Here again, the EU follows the lead           for security research, with an increase “by            the European Union cannot be considered a
but also against international law, that clearly     of the US. Worse even, the improvement of                more than 13 times, from 15 to 200 millions            valuable alternative to the US. For that would
determines that Serbia continues to hold             security inside the European Union is “regu-             euros per year.”                                       mean replacing one imperialism — that of the
sovereignty over Kosovo (UNSC Resolution             larly being discussed with external partners                 The African continent, nearby and mainly           US — by another, seemingly more civilized
1244 of 1999).                                       such as the United States,” according to an              consisting of former colonies, is the preferred        one — that of the EU. Or the replacement of
     In Afghanistan, all European NATO               official EU web site.                                    playing ground for European military action.           one class of exploiters by another one. It is
members (23 countries) and 4 non-NATO EU                  The new Lisbon Treaty obliges the Mem-              While mainly France and Britain have their             one thing to cleverly take advantage of the
Member States are contributing troops to the         ber States to “undertake progressively to im-            own, quite extensive networks of military              contradictions between different imperialist
US-led occupation force, thus helping to free        prove their military capabilities” (TEU, Article         bases, military assistance agreements and              forces in order to bring the people’s struggles
US troops for the occupation of Iraq. While          27). It is quite a unique feature in the history         defense pacts with various African countries,          forward. It is an entirely different matter to
several European countries were against              of international treaties that a treaty contains         also the European Union as such is becom-              have illusions in the EU’s self-declared inten-
the war on Iraq, the US-led ‘Coalition of the        the obligation to spend more for the military.           ing more active in Africa. A case in point             tions to bring about peace — or democracy
Willing’ initially contained troops from 15          It is the only article of the entire Treaty that         is the 2007 agreement on the sending of                and development, for that matter.
current EU Member States. (8 of them have            encourages public expenditure, as opposed to             EU troops to Chad and the Central African                  This article is based on a paper presented
withdrawn since, basically because of the            sectors such as health care and education.               Republic, under the pretext of protecting              by the author at the XIVth International
steadfastness of the Iraqi resistance and the             The Treaty reaffirms the European                   civilians from the spill-over violence from            Conference on European Studies in Havanna,
protest at home.)                                    Union’s adherence to NATO obligations:                   neighbouring Sudan.                                    Cuba, 27-30 November 2007. n
     Europe’s military actions and plans             “Commitments and cooperation in this area
abroad reflect the ambiguous and sometimes           shall be consistent with commitments under
changing situation of supporting and follow-         the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation,                        CANADIAN PEACE CONGRESS PREPARES FOR WPC
ing the lead of the United States on the one         which, for those States which are members of                   CARACAS WORLD ASSEMBLY
hand, and wanting to build and project an            it, remains the foundation of their collective
own, European defense force on the other.            defence and the forum for its implementa-                          The Interim Executive of the Canadian Peace Congress, following the report of
In the main, Europe’s big capital wants to           tion.” (TEU, Article 27-7) This idea is also                   Sean Currie Congress delegate to the August WPC Regional Meeting in Caracas
provide itself with its own military means to        dear to Belgian Prime Minister Verhofstadt,                    has begun the work of organizing a Congress delegation to the April 2008 World
protect its interests independently from the         who declared before the Belgian Chamber of                     Assembly of the World Peace Council. The Canadian Peace Congress upon receiv-
US. This was already clear at the time of the        Representatives in September 2006 his love                     ing the official documents of invitation from WPC and COSI, the host organization,
first Gulf War, in 1991. The European Round          for a European ‘defense identity’, “not sepa-                  will circulate them and begin the work of organizing a Congress delegation to attend
Table of Industrialists (ERT), which regroups        rate from NATO but as a pillar of NATO.”                       the WPC Executive Meeting, and send a broad representative delegation of peace,
45 of the largest European transnational             He sees the Belgian military mission with                      labour and democratic activists to attend the World Assembly and Day of Solidarity
corporations, assessed Europe’s role in the          UNIFIL in South Lebanon as “an important                       with the Bolivarian Revolution and the people of Venezuela. Special attention will
war in its document ‘Reshaping Europe’:              step in developing that European defense                       be given to organizing youth to attend the event.
“Europe had interests at stake in the Gulf,          identity and that European defense pillar,                         Report back meetings of the decisions of the August Caracas Regional Meeting
and it had ideas as what was to be done. But         within the framework of the Atlantic alliance                  of WPC have been organized by the Edmonton Peace Council, the Regina Peace
when the issue of using violence came up,            as a whole.”                                                   Council and the newly formed Fraser Valley Peace Council in Vancouver BC where
Europe disposed neither of the decision-                  The new Treaty further expands the                        the WPC World Assembly was discussed and work begun on organizing a represen-
making mechanisms, nor of the means to               concept of military interventions abroad,                      tative delegation. Report was also made to the Nelson BC Peace Coalition, evoking
possibly intervene.” The NATO war against            outside the EU borders, to “include joint                      keen interest in the WPC event in Caracas.
Yugoslavia confirmed this ‘problem’: Euro-           disarmament operations, humanitarian and                           In other work, the Congress Interim Executive has opened up discussions on
pean imperialism was not able to overthrow           rescue tasks, military advice and assistance                   a draft call to an Extraordinary Renewal Convention to be convened following the
the nationalist resistance of Serbia by arms         tasks, conflict prevention and peace-keep-                     WPC World Assembly in Caracas next April. The call will be accompanied with a
nor to get the spoils of war for itself. It had to   ing tasks, tasks of combat forces in crisis                    new draft constitution and program of action.
appeal to the US to carry out the job.               management, including peacemaking, and                             Canadian Peace Congress Council’s participated in the Canadian Peace Alliance
     The 1992 Maastricht Treaty had already          post-conflict stabilisation,” adding that                      sponsored October 27th mobilizations for peace under the slogans of Canada Out of
introduced the EU pillar of a Common                 “all these tasks may contribute to the fight                   Afghanistan, US Out of Iraq, Hands of Iran, and Bring the Troops Home Now.
Foreign and Security Policy, but its imple-          against terrorism, including by supporting                         The Congress is working on a new website and is reviewing plans for an all-
mentation got slowed down because of con-            third countries in combating terrorism in                      Canada Congress publication.
tradictions among EU Members States and              their territories” (TEU, Article 28). With
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       VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                    Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )    W W W. W P C - I N . O R G     INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




                       The 2007 Japan Peace Conference in Okinawa
T
        he 2007 Japan Peace Conference was          rish, executive director of the Washington               importance of international cooperation and             retary General Chisaka Jun made the keynote
        held for four days from November 22,        Peace Action, USA; Paulina Elizabeth Ponce               exchanges for eradicating US military crimes            speech in which he called on the participants
        2007 in Naha City in Okinawa (an            Cando, International Network for the Abolition           and achieving a development of local economy            to drive the Japanese and U.S. governments
island of south Japan). More than 1,000 peace       of Foreign Military Bases — Ecuador/ head of             by removing bases. He also stressed that the            into a corner with further achievements of the
activists from across the country took part in      the communication affairs of the human rights            struggles against US bases is a part of the             movement and the new political situation. He
the conference.                                     watch section of the Ecumenical Commission               global effort to achieve a just world, in which         called for further actions in opposition to the
     Under the slogan: “For the Abrogation of       of Human Rights, Ecuador; Andrea Licata,                 broader joint actions could be possible.                new anti-terrorism special measures bill and
Military Alliance and the Removal of Military       PhD, Committee of Inhabitants and Workers of                  Through the discussion, the symposium              adverse revision of the Constitution. He also
Bases,” the Conference has been held annu-          East Vicenza — Against the Construction of a             made clear the struggles waged in different             stressed the need to block the realignment of
ally since 1986, by the Organizing Committee        New Base in Vicenza — For the Conversion of              countries and regions were important not only           US forces in Japan, to undo the government
composed by Japan Peace Committee and               Camp Ederle to Civil Uses, Italy; Ko You Kyo-            for their respective places, but were integral          textbook screening policy on “mass suicide”
other around 50 organizations including trade       ung, Bureau Chief, Campaign for Eradication              part of the global struggle to reject the domi-         during the Battle of Okinawa, and to thor-
unions, peace and solidarity organizations,         of Crimes by US Troops in Korea, Republic of             nation by big powers and to create a peaceful           oughly uncover the defense scandal.
women and youth.                                    Korea; and Tadaaki Kawata, Executive Board               and just world order. It showed the importance              The conference focused efforts on the is-
     The Conference took place amidst the           Member, Japan Peace Committee.                           to globalize joint actions and solidarity in            sue of “mass suicides” at the end of WW II.
increased international isolation of the US              The Chief of the Department of Base Af-             opposition to US military bases, and to open            A survivor of “mass suicides” testified from
policy of aggression and oppression, while          fairs, Ginowan City Government (where US                 up a new horizon for creating a foreign bases           his own experience that it occurred when he
the movement and public opinion against             Marine Corps Air Station Futenma is situated)            — free and peaceful world and Asia.                     was six years old. He revealed that his mother
U.S. bases and U.S. military presence are           of Okinawa Prefecture was also presented at                                                                      shouted at his elder brother, “Throw away the
gaining significant ground in different parts       the Symposium and made a special reports.                Human Chain around the                                  grenade!” and his family narrowly escaped
of the world. In March 2007, the Internation-            The Symposium made clear that despite               US Marine Base                                          death, he said.
al Conference for the Abolition of Foreign          the serious damage caused by the US military                 As part of the conference, about 1,300                  In a symposium on “mass suicides,”
Military Bases was held in Ecuador for the          presence, including crimes and environment               people on November 25 formed a human chain              Okubo Yasuhiro of the Okinawa Peace Com-
first time in history, which resulted in the        pollution, and the danger of the US world                encircling US Marine Corps Camp Schwab in               mittee stressed that behind the distortion
establishment of an international network           strategy, the US attempt to dominate the rest            Nago City where the government is planning              of history of Okinawa is the scheme of the
against military bases. The struggles to op-        of the world by military force has met with              to construct a new US base (on Henoko Sea-              Japanese and US governments to discour-
pose military bases were also emphasized in         strong resistance in many parts of the world.            shore). Not only the conference participants            age Okinawans’ wishes for peace and to
the Counter-Forum on the G8 Summit held             The participants had interactive discussion              but local residents that have been waging a             strengthen the military alliance.
in Rostock, Germany.                                on how to promote public opinion and coop-               struggle for more than ten years against US                  In a separate symposium on “munici-
     In Japan, particularly after the landslide     eration, on advocacy for the conversion of               base construction participated.                         palities, residents and U.S. bases,” repre-
defeat of ruling Liberal Democratic Party           military bases for civilian use, and on creative                                                                 sentatives of movements in opposition to the
led coalition in the election of the House          ideas and experiences in the movement.                   Main Conference and Workshops                           realignment plan in Iwakuni and Zama cities
of Councilors last July, situation has been              Geov Parrish reported that in the United               Following the international symposium, a             as well as the JCP made reports. The move-
dramatically changing, in which people got          States, the movement against the Iraq war has            main conference was held on 23 November in              ment in Yokosuka City in opposition to the
the conviction that public opinion could            created a historically unusual change in the             Naha City Hall with 1,000 participants. In the          deployment of a US nuclear-powered aircraft
move the politics.                                  public opinion, and that the bigger challenge            main conference, Japan Peace Committee Sec-             carrier also joined in the discussion. n
     Among others, the withdrawal of the            would be to change the politics. He stressed
Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, having        the importance of supporting those who refuse
been dispatched to the Indian Ocean to help         to serve in the war in Iraq, of developing pub-             AGORA FOR THE FUTURE OF EUROPE
the US military operations in Afghanistan, was      lic opinion through non-violent resistance to               European Parliament — Brussels, 8-9 November 2007
an historic achievement of public opinion and       prevent weapons and equipment from being                    Position presented by Skevi Koukouma — WIDF Vice President
movement. It was the Japanese public that           sent to Iraq, and of mobilizing people through
has enforced the Maritime Self-Defense Force        students’ resistance against military recruit-                   We are gathered here at this crucial moment in order to discuss the future of Europe.
ships to stop its mandate in Indian Ocean.          ment activities.                                            It is clear that this is an effort to show that there are democratic procedures in promoting
     In Iwakuni (expansion of air base),                 Paulina Ponce spoke of her experience                  the approval of the Treaty, considering AGORA as a consultation process of the NGO’s
Yokosuka (deployment nuclear-powerd air-            of the movement against the military base in                and further more the people of Europe.
craft carrier), Zama (relocation of an army         Manta, one of the US forward operating loca-                     Subsequently, we cannot avoid talking about the political framework and content of
headquarter from US mainland), Henoko               tion, through making it known to the public                 the revised Constitutional Treaty, as well as the way in which this is going to be adopted,
(constructing a new marine base), Takae (new        the impact of the military presence and the                 after the decisions of the EU Council meeting in Lisbon.
heliport for marine), local people have been        role of the base as foothold of the US domi-                     The European Office of WIDF denounces the real and stated goal of the current reform
working, together with their local govern-          nation of Latin America. Pointing out future                of the European Union treaties, which is to recover the essential content of the previously
ments, in opposition to the ongoing realign-        tasks of the international network as estab-                rejected draft constitutional treaty, whilst at the same time seeking to avoid a democratic
ment and reinforcement of US military forces        lishing an international coordinating com-                  debate and the expression of the peoples will, namely through referendums.
and construction plans for a new base. The          mittee, organizing international campaigns,                      This attempt is unacceptable and is a profound disrespect for democracy and for the
realignment of U.S. forces in Japan is clearly      she called for cooperation and solidarity for               sovereign will, expressed in 2005 by the French and Dutch people.
aimed at turning Japan into a stronghold of         a world without foreign military bases.                          If it were to be ratified in the various countries, this treaty should have been directed towards
the US in its preemptive attack strategy.                Andrea Licata reported on the struggle                 a qualitative leap in the configuration of the European Union and not strengthening as an eco-
     US Defense Secretary Robert Gates in           against the US base in Vicenza, Italy, which                nomic, political and military block contrary to the interests of the workers and the peoples.
a recent interview with the Asahi Shimbun           is planned to be expanded. The successful                        This treaty constitutes a new step towards the institutionalisation of neo-liberalism,
(Japanese daily newspaper) expressed his            200,000 people rally was held in February                   the promotion of militarism and a stronger domination by the capital and the leading great
strong concern over the implementation of the       2007. He cited concrete examples from Ger-                  powers of the European Union already implemented by the cornerstone of the EU institu-
realignment plan by saying, “If you start pulling   many and East Europe of the conversion of                   tions, the Maastricht, Amsterdam and Nice Treaties and several neo- liberal policies such
at one thread, then I worry that the whole thing    military bases for civilian use and stressed that           as the Lisbon Strategy.
will come unraveled.” The conference called         the removal of military bases is a challenge for                 The policies to be implemented by the draft treaty at hand will further jeopardise
on participants to pull “threads” and defeat the    the people and community also from the sake                 the economic and social rights of the women’s and the peoples generally; through the
realignment plan with nationwide solidarity.        of employment and economy. He pointed to                    liberalisation of markets, the primacy of competition and monetarist policies serving
     It was also significant that in Okinawa,       the importance of revealing the fact that the               the interests of the big economic and financial groups, for example by dismantling and
where the people of the entire prefecture are in-   base is being used for preemptive attacks.                  privatising public services and not taking into account the real needs generated by
volved in the struggle against the government’s          Ko You Kyoung made clear that while                    growth and unemployment.
decision to delete the reference from school        some part of the US military bases in South                      Additionally, this treaty promotes the militarisation of the European Union within the
textbooks to the responsibility of the Japanese     Korea has been returned according to the its                framework of NATO and in coordination with the USA, an increase in military spending,
military for forcing the local people to commit     realignment plan, the rest are being expanded               an arms race and the militarisation of international relations in general.
“mass suicide,” the peace movements of Japan        and being strengthened. She referred to the                      From all mentioned above it becomes evident that this Treaty does counter the interest
and other parts of the world met.                   contamination problem in the former base                    and aspiration of the women’s and peoples of Europe. This is why we say No both to the new
     The Conference made a call to bring back       sites, saying that more and more Korean                     Treaty and to the antidemocratic process through which it is tried to be imposed. It is our
the Japanese Self-Defense Force from Iraq,          people are calling on the US to take the respon-            demand that the right of each people to have their say on a treaty which has such profound
largely increase the movement in opposition         sibility for cleaning up such area. She also said           consequences for the present and the future of each of their countries is upheld.
to adverse revision of the peaceful Consti-         that heinous crimes of brutality such as sexual                   It is our demand that the participation of the peoples of Europe in a process affect-
tution, and form a majority of the public           crimes and arson committed by US military                   ing their lives is guaranteed, through a broad and democratic debate and through the
that favors the abrogation of the Japan-US          personnel in Korea are increasing.                          expression of the popular will.
Security Treaty.                                         Kawata Tadaaki, having referred to the                      With full confidence in the possibility of a different Europe, a Europe of cooperation,
                                                    achievement in removing JSDF from the war                   of real economic and social progress and peace, WIDF and its national organisations
International Symposium                             in Afghanistan, emphasized the importance of                in European countries, we state that we will focus our work in our countries on actions
    The International Symposium, as a part          international solidarity of peace and anti-base             against the adoption of this Treaty. The reform treaty must be brought to referendum in
of the Conference, was held on November             movements, based on the struggles of residents              all the EU member states, following broad and democratic popular debates.
22-23, 2007. On the panel were Geov Par-            and local governments. He pointed out the
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      VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                   Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )        W W W. W P C - I N . O R G   INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




                              Africa Under Further Menace of Resource Wars
                                                                     Rui Namorado Rosa, President, CPPC — Portugal



A
         frica supports a population of          pected to decline at about 3% a year, to                  its hydrocarbons’ production capacity,                      USA’s hegemonic control so far. A recent
         about 900 million people, living        about half that level by 2025.                            becoming then unable to export them to                      tour by Iranian President to seven African
         in about 50 countries, many of              Africa also holds substantial addi-                   the world market. So that Africa is eyed                    countries, followed by the announcement
which are somewhat artificial construc-          tional deepwater resources in the Guinea                  by imperialism as being simultaneously                      of oil development agreements between
tions inherited from the European colo-          Gulf, especially off the coasts of Angola                 very rich (in natural resources) and ex-                    the National Iranian Oil Company with
nial administrations set up in the XIX           and Nigeria, which are at an early stage                  tremely poor (in people’s living standard),                 the Nigeria counterpart and the Ivory
century.                                         of depletion. This production is expected                 a regrettable combination that neverthe-                    Coast, are a sign of this. As it is the
    The social structure of the Continent        to grow rapidly to peak around 2012 at 4                  less is the origin of the surpluses that are                active economic cooperation policy en-
is one of extremes, from deprived popula-        Mb/day, and decline steeply afterwards                    exported to the world market, feeding the                   tertained by R.P. China in developing
tions, many facing famine, disease and           to near exhaustion by 2030.                               consumerism of rich countries and the                       infrastructures and resources in several
turbulence, to the wealthy elites and war            Africa also holds substantial natural                 profits of the trans-national corporations,                 countries, on bilateral basis and via the
lords supported by colonial or neo-colo-         gas deposits in Algeria, Nigeria, Egypt                   at the expenses of present level of living                  China-Africa Cooperation Forum, con-
nial economic or military connections,           and Lybia, plus some minor reservoirs                     of Africans and compromising the future                     vened by China and the African Union.
whose income they derive from the ex-            elsewhere. Total gas reserves are equiva-                 industrialization of the continent.                         But the USA has designated West African
ploitation of natural resources from which       lent to about 46 Gb, the larger in Algeria,                   Between 1965 and 1999 there were sev-                   oil resources as constituting a national
huge profits are extract by trans-national       which currently produces at a rate of 560                 enty-three civil wars in the world, almost all              strategic interest since 2001. And the Eu-
corporations.                                    Mb/year. The related production from gas                  driven by the capital greed to control natural              ropean Union is attempting to strengthen
    Africa is a prime producer of some                                                                     resources such as oil, diamonds, copper, and                its economic links to the continent, prof-
mineral raw materials of great industrial                                                                  so on. It is realized that countries relying on             iting from the foothold acquired by the
importance. To name just a few commodi-                                                                    one or two major export have more than a                    former colonial powers there, of which
ties of greater economic and technological                                                                 one-in-five chance of civil war, a proportion               the November 2007 summit between the
value, and their larger producers in the                                                                   far higher than in countries with a broad                   European and the African Unions was a
continent to the world market: Hydro-                                                                      spectrum of foreign trade. One realizes how                 token but also a sign of growing African
carbons (in Libya, Nigeria, Algeria and                                                                    highly specialized economies, based on ei-                  assertiveness, for which the broadening
Angola); Diamonds (in Botswana, R.D.                                                                       ther intensive or mono-cultural agriculture                 global competition for investment and
Congo, R. South Africa and Angola); Gold                                                                   or over-exploitation of certain mineral re-                 trade added support.
(R South Africa, Ghana, Mali, Tanzania);                                                                   sources, focused at serving foreign interests,                   The recently announced United States
Platinum group metals (R. South Africa);                     Source: Regional Assessment – Africa,
                                                             ASPO Newsletter, no. 68, August 2006
                                                                                                           tend to corrupt ruling elites and divert human              Africa Command (AFRICOM) is a new
Tantalum and Niobium (R. South Africa,                                                                     and material resources from the economic                    military headquarters devoted solely to
Mozambique, Rwanda); Uranium (Niger,             liquefaction plants (LNG) is expected to                  activities that satisfy most social necessi-                Africa, the result of an internal reorga-
Namibia); Phosphate (Morocco, R. South           increase to attain a plateau of about 1.3                 ties, depriving the population at large from                nization of the USA military command
Africa, Tunisia); Copper (Zambia, R.             Mb/day from 2020 onwards.                                 their basic needs. Resource wars with their                 structure that officially will respond for
South Africa, R.D. Congo, Botswana).                 Taken together, the total production of               devastating impacts on civilians have become                the military relations with the African
    As to hydrocarbons (crude oil and            all liquids (conventional and deepwater                   common along the XX century. Many of these                  countries. Some African leaderships were
natural gas), Africa holds about one             oil and liquefied natural gas) is expected                were in Africa.                                             led to view AFRICOM as an opportunity.
tenth of the world’s reserves of petro-          to reach a peak of about 12 Mb/day                            Nearly every country in Africa is a case                The USA has already been offered Li-
leum and natural gas, and is currently           around 2012, but then fall rapidly to                     study in this list of sinister examples. Af-                beria to host AFRICOM, and is looking
delivering nearly one tenth of the world’s       about half that level by 2025.                            rica bleeds, notwithstanding its abundant                   at Sao Tome and Principe, Equatorial
annual production. The past and fore-                As to oil consumption, it has grown                   wealth, constrained by the world financial                  Guinea, Kenya, Djibouti, and Ethiopia as
cast production of conventional oil in           five-fold from 1965 to almost 2.5 Mb/day                                                                              possible locations, while having secured
the continent add up to an ultimate oil          in 2006. Per capita consumption stands                                                                                access agreements with Senegal, Mali,
production estimated of nearly 180 Gb            at about one barrel per year, which is                                                                                Ghana, Gabon and Namibia. In the front
(billion barrels), of which nearly half          extremely low when compared with in-                                                                                  and wake of this imperialist move, some
has been produced up to know, the re-            dustrialized countries (that is at least ten                                                                          African nations are receiving significant
maining half been left to be produced in         times higher). Accordingly, one expects                                                                               military aid and weapons sales; most
the future. The four principal producers         Africa will go on being a net exporter                                                                                of these gone to oil-rich and compliant
are Libya, Nigeria, Algeria and Angola,          until 2030, albeit at an ever decreasing                                                                              states.
which are all members of OPEC, together          rate. As such, Africa attracts the eager                                                                                   AFRICOM means the official acknowl-
holding more than 80% of the estimated           attention of oil dependent powers, namely                                                                             edgement by the USA of Africa’s growing
future production of the continent. Other        the European Union, the USA and R.P.                                                                                  strategic importance; it also demonstrates
producers, in decreasing order of shares,        China.                                                                                                                the way the ageing hegemonic power sees
are Egypt, Gabon, R.P. Congo, Sudan,                 On the other hand, African oil-import-                                                                            the exercise of its influence in attaining
Tunisia, Chad and Cameron.                       ing countries face mounting challenges as                                                                             its economic and geo-strategic objectives.
    Production commenced in the 1930s,           a result of world’s dwindling oil supplies                                                                            Financial and technological competition
grew rapidly in the 1960s as major fields        and growing oil prices. The hardest hit are                                                                           can both serve capital interests of all
in Libya came on stream. Production was          the poorest. For instance, Senegal’s budget                                                                           parties and exasperate their inherent
then reinforced by Nigeria and Algeria,          deficit doubled in 2006, inflation acceler-                                                                           contradictions, bringing in the menace
supplemented by smaller producers, in            ated and growth slowed down, as oil price                                                                             of “military solutions.” Which part the
the 1970s. There was an overall early            increased in the international market, and                                                                            multitude of military installations and
peak of production in 1979, then produc-         the state-owned petrochemical industry was                  Source: The Beginning of the Oil End Game featuring       combat groups will play to secure the
                                                                                                            original FTW maps, Michael C. Ruppert, From the Wilder-
tion fell sharply in the wake of the second      forced to shut down for long periods.                                       ness, January 25, 2005                    capital interests of the USA and the EU?
oil shock, due to OPEC quota constraints,            Were Africa to attain a fourfold                                                                                  Which part proxy warfare might play
before recovering and attaining an overall       increase of its present average income                    institutions’ rulings, explored and looted by               again on African soil? The competition
peak of 7.8 Mb/day (million barrels a            level, to reach a middle income level by                  neo-colonial foreign investment, by open or                 for resources is unfolding across Africa
day) in 2006. Future production is ex-           world standards, and it would absorb all                  disguised interference in the form of foreign               as in the past, but the depletion and up-
                                                                                                           humanitarian aid or aid for development, or                 coming scarcity of energy, soil and water,
                                                                                                           straight on violence fed by foreign weapons                 and essential commodities for sustaining
   ON BRUTAL ASSASSINATION OF BENAZIR BHUTTO                                                               in exchange for essential raw-materials or                  the “economic growth” in the “developed
   All India Peace & Solidarity Organisation Press Release                                                 precious materials.                                         world,” threatens anew with old and
   December 28, 2007                                                                                           Africa is likely to suffer continued conflict           novel fashions of resource wars.
                                                                                                           in the short term, given Africa’s undeveloped                    The present rush for African natural re-
   The All India Peace and Solidarity Organisation (AIPSO) expresses its profound shock                    reserves of a number of highly prized mineral               sources to be exported might turn out to be
   and deep outrage at the heinous assassination of Ms. Benazir Bhutto, the leader of the                  commodities. Moves by a number of outside                   a no return way, given that Africa will thus
   Peoples Party in Pakistan. Taking place less than two weeks before the elections, this                  political powers, beyond the ex-colonial Eu-                become dispossessed of those scarce resources
   is an obvious attempt to derail the transition to democracy that Pakistan is attempt-                   ropean countries, have developed within the                 that would be essential to its future economical
   ing. It is not only an attack on the democratic process in Pakistan but it also poses a                 last decade in an accelerated fashion. The                  development, such as hydrocarbons — crude
   serious threat for the entire region.                                                                   evolving African map of external connections                oil and natural gas. African countries see the
       The AIPSO strongly condemns this attack. Clearly there are forces who are seek-                     and investment deals shows clearly the rate                 viability of evolving to higher stages of devel-
   ing to destabilise Pakistan and not allow the transition to democracy to succeed. All                   at which the world’s main protagonists begun                opment, including added industrial value to
   the peace loving people in the world must join hands with the people of Pakistan to                     playing the end game for oil and others scarce              their own raw-materials, becoming strongly
   ensure that such disruptive efforts are thwarted.                                                       raw-materials, on which modern economy is                   undermined. Along the timeline, there is a
       The AIPSO also conveys its heartfelt condolences to Ms. Benazir Bhutto’s fam-                       most dependent.                                             window of opportunity that opened right upon
   ily and People’s Party of Pakistan. The AIPSO assures the people of Pakistan of its                         Explored and neglected Africa still                     the national liberation and with de-coloniza-
   solidarity with them in their hour of grief.                                                            appears as an open continent in the eyes                    tion, but that is now about to close again. Will
                                                                                                           of the world powers. It had escaped major                   Africa have its future denied? n
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       VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                    Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )   W W W. W P C - I N . O R G    INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




     Canadian Imperial Ambitions and BMD — The Energy Connection
                                                                              Sean Currie, Edmonton Peace Council


T
        he Edmonton Peace Council is a              Canadian Imperialist Policy                              er made stops at Barrick Gold’s head quarters          year in the last half-century
        member of the provincial organiza-          — Driven by Oil                                          in Santiago and stopped at Scotia Bank to                   US military expenditures for 2005 were
        tions of the Canadian Peace Congress.            The Harper Conservative Government came             glad hand. In his July 17th 2007 speech to             $482.2 billion ($1,604 per capita) exceeding
Edmonton is the capital city of the province        to power January 23rd 2006 with 33% of the               the Chile-Canada Chamber of Commerce in                by $116.6 billion the expenditures of the next
of Alberta which is now rapidly becoming the        popular vote to form a minority government               Santiago Chile, Prime Minister Harper indi-            fifteen highest nation states put together. The
driving engine of the Canadian economy.             representing those sections of finance capital           cated that Canada is willing to become a big-          2008 budget increases per capita spending to
Edmonton sits in what is known in Alberta           concentrated in the energy sector. The basic             ger player in the region and “to doing so for          $2050.00 or a 25% increase over the 2005
as the “Industrial Heartland.”                      mandate of the Harper Government is to protect           the long term.” Harper said, “Foreign direct           levels. The US economic dependency on war
    The Industrial Heartland area is the cen-       first, the power and privileges of all those who         investment from Canada into the Americas               and military expenditures is the Achilles heal
tral processing, distribution and upgrading         derive their profits from the wealth generated           now stands at close to 100 billion dollars             of US imperialism not as many opine, its great
centre for the massive Tar Sands mining op-         by processing and export of Canadian oil and             — a number that is more than twice the size            strength. US military expenditures on NATO
erations in Alberta 500 km north of Edmonton        natural gas reserves to the US market.                   of Canadian investment in Asia.”                       for personnel and equipment totaled $192.23
in Ft. McMurray where bitumen is extracted               The US military is heavily reliant on                    This places Canada 3rd in direct foreign          billion in 2000 and increased to $262.29 bil-
from the oily sand and upgraded into heavy          Canadian imports of oil. According to the US             investment in the Caribbean and Latin America          lion by 2005 a rise of 36.4% in five years.
oils. The mining operations cover 100 of            Defense Energy Support Center Fact Book                  with banking and mining as the dominant play-               It is clear from these figures why Canadian
thousands of hectares of land.                      2004, in Fiscal Year 2004, the US military               ers. Harper also expressed Canadian energy             military decisions are taken at Brussels and
    Edmonton is rapidly expanding its indus-        (Department of Defense DoD statistics) list              capital is ready to supply energy to South Amer-       not in Ottawa. The big money is at NATO. On
trial foot print and is becoming a central hub      military fuel consumption as increasing to               ican markets and that Canada is prepared to            September 18th 2006, the Assistant Secretary
of rail, pipeline, and industrial fabrication       144 million barrels. This is about 40 million            challenge Venezuela in reversing the “return to        General for Defence Investment of NATO
and processing infrastructure for Canada’s          barrels more than the average peacetime                  the syndrome of economic nationalism, political        announced that the 26 member countries
export of resources to Asia and US markets.         military usage. 144 million barrels makes                authoritarianism and class warfare.” Harper’s          have begun building a 75 million euro com-
                                                    395 000 barrels per day, almost as much                  thinly veiled warning to South American work-          mand and control system for missile defence.
Canada’s New Industrial Power Base                  as daily energy consumption of Greece. The               ers to abandon a path of independent socialist         This is only the start. NATO has produced a
— Tar Sand Oil                                      DoD’s total primary energy consumption                   development and return to capitalist relations         10,000 page report that endorses the US plan
    Once the tar sand is excavated and loaded       in Fiscal Year 2006 was 1100 trillion Btu.               pleases his mining bosses.                             to deploy ballistic missiles to space that will
into giant 400 ton mining trucks it is hauled       It corresponds to only 1% of total energy                     Harper said, “Canada is an emerging en-           increase the initial investment to unlimited
to massive crushers where it is combined with       consumption in USA that represents the                   ergy superpower and is committed to working            heights. It is the anticipation of huge profits
steam and diluents and processed into slurry.       total energy consumption of Nigeria, with                with you in addressing this challenge.”                that has caused the Harper Government to
Processing of the tar sands requires massive        a population of more than 140 million. The                    Canada’s dominant position in mining is           state its willingness to re-open talks with the
volumes of water, natural gas and electricity.      DoD per capita energy consumption (524                   described by Mandeep Dillon in the April 20,           Bush Administration on Canadian participa-
The slurry is then transported via pipelines        trillion Btu) is 10 times more than per capita           2007 Canadian Mining Watch report entitled             tion in Ballistic Missile Defence.
to upgraders that are located in Ft. McMurray       energy consumption in China, or 30 times                 “Canadian Mining in Mexico: Made in Canada                  Not satisfied with current levels of military
and “The Industrial Heartland” — Edmonton.          more than that of Africa.                                Violence” as, “Canadian mining corporations            expenditures and Canada’s current rejection
The “upgraders” are the single largest con-              October 29, 2007 in Ottawa, Canadian                lead the global mining industry.”                      of US BMD, J. L. Granatstein in the Fall 2007
sumers of water, natural gas and electricity in     Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute (CD-                    Dillon cites that, “The Canadian industry         CDFAI report entitled “A Threatened Future:
Alberta and the largest emitters of CO2 and         FAI) sponsored their annual foreign policy               ranks first in the global production of zinc, ura-     Canada’s Future Strategic Environment and
toxic metals in the form of tailings which are      conference entitled “Canada as the Emerg-                nium, nickel and potash; second in sulphur,            its Security Implications” recommends that
dumped in large pits the size of small lakes.       ing Energy Superpower: Testing the Case.”                asbestos, aluminium and cadmium; third in              “Given Canada’s impressive economic ca-
    The size of these industrial projects has       The conference looked at Prime Minister                  copper and platinum group metals; fourth in            pacity, we think an overall defence budget
been compared to the modern day undertak-           Harper’s claim that Canada is an “emerging               gold; and fifth in lead. It has interests in over      at a level equivalent to the NATO average
ing of the Great Wall of China. They are large      energy superpower.” It addressed some ques-              8,300 properties worldwide — 3,400 of which            (2.2 per cent of GDP) would be a reasonable
industrial projects each taking millions of man-    tions such as Life as an Energy Superpower,              are in 100 foreign countries. In Latin America         target. In 2007 dollars, that would generate
hours to construct, consuming tons of steel, cop-   Implications for Canada-US Relations,                    and the Caribbean, which have been identi-             an annual budget of approximately $25 bil-
per and plastics. A typical project will require    Critical Energy Infrastructure Protection,               fied as the main current geographical target           lion, or roughly $9 to 10 billion more than
4000 trades personnel to build with some of the     and Energy, Environment and the Arctic.                  for mineral exploration, Canadian mining               the current figure.”
largest requiring 10,000 or more.                   Jim Prentice Minister of Industry and Gary               corporations represent the largest percentage               David S. McDonough, Ph.D. Programme,
    Currently there is more then $250 billion       Lunn Minister of Natural Resources were                  of foreign mining companies — with interests           Department of Political Science, Dalhousie
in proposed expansion taking current produc-        keynote speakers.                                        in more than 1,200 properties.”                        University in the Spring 2006/07, Volume 9,
tion from approximately 1.2 million barrels of           On July 14th 2006 in a speech to the                                                                       Issue 3 edition of the Journal of Military and
heavy oil a day to 5 million by about 2030.         Canada-U.K. Chamber of Commerce on the                   Canada’s “Continental” Response                        Strategic Studies report entitled “BMD and
All of the oil produced (99%) goes via an           eve of the 2006 St. Petersburg G8 summit                     Canada now ranks twelfth among the                 US Strategic Doctrine: Canadian Strategic
enormous and intricate networks of pipelines        Prime Minister said, “One of the primary                 world’s nations in military spending. Of               Interests in the Debate on Missile Defence”
to US refineries for final processing. Much         targets for British investors has been our               NATO’s 19 member countries, Canada ranks               conclude that, “In the end, Ottawa should
of the production goes in to military fuels         booming energy sector. They have recognized              sixth in total military spending ($16 billion).        go into any deliberation on missile defence
specially designed for the US Air Force and         Canada’s emergence as a global energy pow-               For 2005 Canada’s military expenditures                with its eyes open and recognize that a more
the US Navy. Most of the refinery facilities        erhouse — the emerging ‘energy superpower’               were $14.7 billion ($450 per capita) repre-            sophisticated and ‘limited’ approach to mis-
that Alberta heavy oil is transported to are        our government intends to build.”                        senting 1% of the all military expenditures.           sile defence, while having a clear relation-
located in Illinois and Oklahoma. It is then             In a follow up speech on September                  The Stockholm International Peace Research             ship with an aggressive American strategic
transported to the large refineries of Texas.       20th 2007 to the Economic Club of New                    Institute 2005 annual report places Canada             doctrine, could also be in Canada’s strategic
There are now discussions occurring that            York Harper said, “Canada is an emerg-                   as the 6th largest seller of military weapons          interest.”
will take the raw bitumen directly to Texas         ing energy superpower, the only stable and               in the world. Canadian defence industry is
through new pipelines.                              growing producer of this scarce commodity                worth $7 billion (US) per year and employs             Harper’s Minority Government
    The majority of Canadian finance and            in an unstable world. Our strong and robust              70,000 Canadian workers. Half of all sales             and BMD
industrial capital is now “underwritten” by         economy, with its enormous energy potential,             come from the US and close to 80% is to                    Any debate in Canadian parliament over
the “equity” in Canada’s tar sands. The US          represents a tremendous opportunity for                  NATO allies.                                           the Harper minority government policy of
Department of Energy’s Energy Information           American business and a crucial element of                   Prime Minister Harper’s decision to turn           Canadian “re-engagement” into US BMD is
Agency (EIA) 2006 annual report shows               continental energy security. And given the               a war of occupation in Kabul into a war of ag-         being bypassed and slipped into Canadian
that “North America” is 2nd in global crude         deep integration of our own economies, these             gression in Kandahar has increased military            foreign policy through phony sleaze cam-
oil reserves at 317 billion barrels. North          global challenges and opportunities call for             expenditures to $15.7 billion and rising.              paigns diverting public attention from the
America follows the Middle East which ac-           a continental response.”                                 Canadian Government spending on NATO for               real aim of Harper’s backers.
counts for 743 billion barrels. In a foot note           Canadian foreign policy is characterized            2005 (combined personnel and equipment)                    BMD is part of the strategic military
to the North American reserves the report           by the dominant transnational oil monopolies             was $6.4 billion, or 60.4% of total military           policy of US imperialism which is fueling
says that Alberta’s tar sands account for 174       exploiting the Canadian oil reserves. These              expenditures and an increase of 20% over               a new arms race. The defeat of Harper will
billion barrels or 55% of the total known           companies are involved in the mining, upgrad-            year 2000. The Canadian Government spends              forestall BMD and help prevent a new global
“North American” reserves. The US is the            ing and transportation of bitumen to US refin-           60% of its military expenditures on NATO               arms race. The Canadian Peace Congress is
largest single national consumer of oil at ap-      eries and downstream processing facilities.              and only 40% on the defence of Canadian                working with all progressive peace forces in
proximately 25 million barrels per day. The                                                                  territory, airspace and coastal waters.                drawing attention to this dangerous escala-
largest single consumer in the world is the         Canadian Mining Capital as Central                                                                              tion of a new global arms race led in Canada
US military which sucks up 400,000 barrels          American Imperial Power Broker                           Canada’s Defence Budget: 1993-2007                     by the Prime Minister Stephen Harper. The
per day, the US Air Force accounts for 40%              PM Harper’s recent tour of Haiti, Colum-                 The US defence budget for fiscal year              defeat of Harper will strengthen the interests
of all US military consumption.                     bia and Chile was a play to position Canadian            2008 is $623 billion which is 21% of a total           of anti-imperialism and send a signal to US-
    It is in this context that Canadian Prime       mining and banking interests as dominant                 $2.9 trillion US budget. With the 2008 US              NATO military councils that the Canadian
Minister Stephen Harper finds his support           hemispherical players and to situate Canada              defence budget, America’s military budget              people desire peace, progress and interna-
base and his desire to make Canada an “En-          as a regional imperial power broker.                     has doubled since Bush took office in 2000             tional solidarity over war, neo-colonialism
ergy Superpower.”                                       While on his July tour of the region Harp-           and is now higher in real terms than any other         and imperialism. n
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      Declaration of the European Conference in Defense of Peace
                                                         Lisbon, Portugal — September 28-29, 2007
     Declaration of the Conference of European           5. The further militarization of the Eu-                  All parties ought to abide by their com-
Peace Organisations jointly convened by the          ropean Union by the installation of military             mitments and neither renounce nor impose                  Initiatives Organised by
World Peace Council (WPC), Confederal                bases outside national borders, the creation             them unilaterally, as some nuclear powers                 the Portuguese Council for
Group of the European United Left-Nordic             of rapid deployment interventionist army                 have done and are doing. European nuclear                 Peace and Co-operation
Green Left (GUE/NGL) and Portuguese Coun-            battle corps and new naval groups designed               powers, in particular, ought to be active par-            (CPPC)
cil for Peace and Cooperation                        to impose its political-economic will in                 ties in reducing and in renouncing the pos-
                                                                                                                                                                        On the occasion of the holding in Lis-
     Participants representing 20 Peace Organi-      Europe and elsewhere in the world, the                   session, deployment or use of such weapons                bon, Portugal, of the Heads of State
sations and Movements from 14 European coun-         development of new weapons and integrated                of mass destruction.                                      and Government EU/Africa Summit,
tries gathered in Lisbon, Portugal at the same       military surveillance and command systems,                    Our urgent purpose and resolve is to                 the Portuguese Council for Peace and
time as the informal meeting in Evora, Portugal      the trade or supply of weapons to third parties          establish nuclear weapons free zones and                  Co-operation (CPPC) organised several
of the ministers of Defense of the EU. The meeting   to serve economic interests or gain economic             finally attain complete banishment of nuclear             initiatives around this topic.
of peace organizations after fruitful exchanges of   or political leverage by use of force overseas,          weapons all over the world.
views issued the following declaration:              are all symptoms of an imperialist policy that                10. The peoples of Europe have repeat-                   The CPPC launched these initiatives
                                                                                                                                                                        in a moment in which an EU-Africa
                                                     represents an immoral and immense waste                  edly expressed their desire for a better future
                                                                                                                                                                        Joint Strategy is proposed, supposedly a
    1. The peoples of Europe are facing              of resources and poses a perilous danger                 and their opposition to military interventions,           partnership of equals. What the Summit
growing threats to global peace and security         to international security and peace. To the              aggressions and occupations where their                   produced, in our view, is contradictory
resulting from militarization of international       contrary, the peoples of Europe demand a                 countries are involved. As well, they have                with this proclaimed objective. Eco-
relations and increasing imperialist aggres-         stop to the militarization of Europe.                    expressed their active solidarity with the                nomic Partnership Agreements demand
sions around the world. The peace conference             6. Combined modern space and ground                  peoples who are the victims of aggression                 even more from the African Countries
demands an immediate cessation of these war          platforms allow for global intelligence,                 or any form of oppression. We express our                 than the current WTO regulations. The
driven policies. Instead, the peace conference       surveillance and command signals that, in                solidarity with all the peoples of the former             Action plan is focussed much more on
upholds the promotion of peaceful relations          conjunction with available launch carriers               Yugoslavia who confront the consequences                  military and security operations than on
in the continent and with the whole world            and missiles, empower the USA and some                   of imperialist interference and aggression                a clear commitment to aid to develop-
and calls for improvements in the social well        other military powers to lead the world into             aimed at converting their countries into                  ment and debt relief. These and other
                                                                                                                                                                        concerns of the Portuguese Peace move-
being of the peoples of Europe.                      newer and unimaginable dangerous levels of               protectorates of the USA, EU or NATO and
                                                                                                                                                                        ment and other Portuguese and foreign
    2. Considering the rejection of the Euro-        warfare, in the core of the European conti-              who are compelled to host foreign military                organisations, were voiced in the events
pean Constitutional Treaty in many societies,        nent, at its boundaries and beyond.                      bases. We denounce the US and EU plans to                 organised by the CPPC in Lisbon.
and in particular by referenda in France and             Developments on European territory or                recognize an independent Kosovo as a clear                    • The first initiative was a debate
Holland, participants in the peace conference        elsewhere that result in military escalation,            violation of the sovereignty and territorial              “A EUROPE OF PEACE AND ITS
declare that the reformed European Treaty            namely in the domain of land and space                   integrity of Serbia and an open violation of              RELATIONS WITH AFRICA,” held in
continues to be a clear expression of the            platforms that carry warfare to outer space,             international law.                                        Lisbon on 7th December, organised by
ongoing dangerous course towards increasing          are to be deeply rejected as hegemonic and                    11. Peace movements all over Europe are              the Portuguese Council for Peace and Co-
the concentration of political decision-mak-         imperialist, challenging peace and security              expressing their support and solidarity with the          operation in association with the French
ing power directed against the sovereignty of        and provoking further military threats.                  peoples of Poland and the Czech Republic,                 Peace Movement. In this debate took part
the peoples, pervasive intrusion of security             7. We have witnessed a renewed expan-                who are rejecting the deployment of US “Mis-              representatives from the CPPC, the French
agencies into civic life within the Union, and       sion of the global military expenditures over            sile Defense Shield” bases in their countries.            Peace Movement, OSPAAAL and CEDES-
the projection of strengthened military might        the past decade, at an annual growth rate                The growth of NATO is proving to be a pretext             PAZ from Spain and the representative in
onto the world stage. The reformed Treaty            of nearly 4%, reaching $1,200 billion USD                for expanding its military infrastructures into           Portugal of the Saharawi Arab Democratic
ignores the views of the people and serves the       in 2006 (half of this accounted for by the               Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania and                   Republic, as well as several Portuguese
interests of the corporations in all spheres.        USA). Only one part of that huge destructive             Bulgaria, accelerating a trend of militarization          civil society organisations, which included
We demand that the will of the peoples of            expenditure would have been sufficient to                of the whole European territory and the lives of          the trade union movement.
Europe and their democratic rights to be             implement the Development Goals agreed                   their people, promoting an aggressive posture                 This debate was held on the eve of the
respected, and that any reform treaty should                                                                  vis a vis neighbouring countries and threaten-            Lisbon EU/Africa Summit and focussed
be submitted to referenda in every country                                                                    ing others elsewhere in the world.                        on several issues related to the relation-
of the Union.                                                                                                      This course of events contradicts the                ship between Europe and Africa, co-
    3. The growing supremacy of the eco-                                                                      desire for peace of the peoples of Europe                 operation between the European Peace
nomic interest of corporations and the states                                                                 who reject aggressive alliances and demand                organisations and the African nations, as
is intimately connected to the militarization                                                                 that immediate steps be taken to effect the               well as problems concerning the daily life
of Europe and has resulted in diminished                                                                      dismantling of NATO.                                      of African immigrants in Europe.
civic, social and labour rights and the crimi-                                                                     12. The capitalist economic system is                    • On the 8th of December 2007 the
nalization of civic resistance. The undermin-                                                                 depleting natural resources at a fast rate.               CPPC in co-operation with CEAS and
ing of the quality of democratic rights and                                                                   There is a growing military competition among             CEDESPAZ from Spain and CGTP-IN, the
democratic institutions has paved the way                                                                     capitalist states for access and possession of            Portuguese National Trade Union Centre,
for the intrusion and promotion of extremist                                                                  the remaining resources. War is not only im-              organised a public rally in solidarity with the
doctrines and actions by aggressive criminal                                                                  moral, it also fails to accomplish the perverse           saharawi people, coinciding with the proce-
groups such as emerging xenophobic and Nazi                                                                   purposes of sustaining economically the great             dures of the EU/Africa Summit in Lisbon.
                                                                                                                                                                            The Portuguese Council for Peace
gangs. The undermining of democratic rights                                                                   political powers and economic interests that
                                                                                                                                                                        and Co-operation — CPPC, the Co-or-
is accompanied by campaigns and political            by the UN Millennium Summit in the year                  engage in war to appropriate and exploit the              dination of Solidarity Associations with
persecution of progressive and peace forces          2000 aimed at the eradication of poverty and             riches of other countries. The history of the late        Sahara — CEAS (Spain), and the General
which is alien to the sentiments and interests       securing basic education and health condi-               colonial wars, the Vietnam war and the more               Confederation of Portuguese Workers —
of the social and people’s movements,                tions in the world.                                      recent wars on Afghanistan, Iraq and Lebanon,             CGTP-IN wanted to expose and remind,
    4. International relations are becoming              8. It is in the earnest interest of the peace        the ongoing genocide in Palestine, prove that             with this action, the serious situation in
more and more militarized. The European              loving peoples of Europe and the world in                military might cannot force the peoples to                which the Saharawi people live for the past
Union is more frequently taking aggressive           general that the European Union renounces                submit and surrender their inalienable and                32 years and demand that international
stances in its international relations vis a         any kind of neo-colonialist or paternalistic at-         legitimate right to resist the aggressors.                law is enforced so that the Saharawis may
vis the resolution of latent and emerging            titude vis a vis third parties. Instead, the Union            In this context, we vehemently reject any            exercise their right to self-determination
conflicts, or prolonged and ongoing wars.            ought to engage in open and mutual relations             move, by whatever pretext, that promotes an               and independence, and that all other
                                                                                                                                                                        African peoples may freely decide their
The complicity of the European Union with            with neighbouring countries and all those with           attack on Iran and declare it to be one more
                                                                                                                                                                        future after de-colonization.
NATO, a self-appointed aggressive alliance           whom they share economic and political inter-            flagrant violation of international law and the               •Rally Lisbon-Dakar 2008: On
of world jurisdiction, is not only a danger to       relations. In no case can any country invoke             UN Charter. We likewise demand a halt to the              the eve of the 2008 edition of the Rally
peace in the world but as well a dangerous           “national interest” or “strategic value” and             involvement of European countries and the                 Lisbon-Dakar, the Portuguese Council
and self-destructive policy for the peoples          resort to aggression in order to gain access to          EU in Afghanistan, siding with the USA and                for Peace and Co-operation organized a
of Europe.                                           essential resources or commodities.                      NATO (in ISAF), and firmly reject the idea of             protest event denouncing the situation
    The active military interventions by the             9. Europe ought to promote an open                   an EU-lead EUROPOL mission there.                         in Western Sahara. The rally will pass
EU in the Balkans, Central Asia and Middle           dialogue among nations, fostering demilitar-                  13. It is our peaceful resolve to renounce           Smara one of the occupied cities of West-
East continue and are to be condemned. The           ization and denuclearization, through inter-             the ongoing arms race and to fight for the de-            ern Sahara and the CPPC appealed to all
presence of numerous European military               national consultation within the framework of            militarization and disarmament of Europe,                 media to take this opportunity to dedicate
bases and increased deployment of military           the UNO and of the OSCE. This should be                  to promote equitable political relationships              some of their attention to the problem
                                                                                                                                                                        of Saharawi people. The Saharawi liv-
forces in Africa (namely the EU mission in           undertaken while respecting past treaties and            among nations, free of military threats and
                                                                                                                                                                        ing in Smara are as all Saharawi in the
Chad and the Central African Republic) are           their enforcement, in particular those trea-             imperialist domination.                                   occupied territories victims of violence
cases for deep concern considering the past          ties that have contributed to diminishing the                 That vision encompasses a continent free             and persecution on the hands of the
and in view of future developments in that           growth of military threats and that promote              of foreign military bases and disengaged from             Moroccan entities.
continent.                                           détente along the lines of past decades.                 any military alliance. n
PEACE MESSENGER                                                                                                                                                                             Page 11
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Summary Report on the WPC Regional Meeting ...
                                                                                             (from p. 3)
                                                                                                                      DELEGATION OF THE WORLD PEACE COUNCIL VISITS THE
Canada’s role in the US-NATO led war in              been present in the WPC in the past and                          PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF LAOS FOR THE FIRST TIME
Afghanistan are a reflection of an alliance of       now needs to re-affiliate with it as a task of
finance-military-oil capital willing to sacrifice    first rate importance.” He went on to say that                        At the invitation of the Lao Peace and
the youth of the country in exchange for profit.     “international solidarity will be understood                     Solidarity Committee, a delegation of the
A statement was read which was well received         not only as the fight against war but will have                  World Peace Council visited the People’s
(please see Appendix A for the full text).           the reach of social equality for our people.”                    Democratic Republic of Laos and its
                                                                                                                      capital Vientiane, on November 21-23,
Paraguay                                             Chile                                                            2007. The delegation was composed by
     Najeeb Amando briefly summarized the                 Sergio Sepiélveda thanked the WPC for                       Iraklis Tsavdaridis, Executive Secretary
peace situation in Paraguay and noted that           inviting Chile to participate in the Assembly                    of WPC and representative of EEDYE,
“discussions of imperialism in South America         meetings. Sepiélveda told the WPC delegates                      Yul Jabour, General Secretary of COSI,
form the basis of the current revolutionary          that he was attending the World Federation of                    Venezuela, MP Sandra Benfica, member
socialist transformations occurring on the           Democratic Youth and that WFDY has a long                        of the Secretariat of the CPPC Portugal, and Maria Zaida Chmaruk, member of the
continent.”                                          a rich relationship with the WPC.                                board of MOPASSOL, Argentina.
     He said that the government of Paraguay is           Sepiélveda noted that Chile currently                            The visit started with a meeting with the leadership of the Lao Peace and Solidar-
utilizing fear as the basis for the introduction     does not have a “committee for Peace”                            ity Committee, tradional member of the WPC, headed by Somsanouk Mixay, General
of “terrorism issues.” He stressed the new           but that the need for a “break with coali-                       Secretary, which allowed an important exchange of opinions and information on the
role of military forces in the cities and that the   tion work” is important as it submerges the                      current international situation; on the work carried out by both organizations; and on
military is characterizing bourgeois politics of     anti-imperialist forces in coalition work not                    the steps towards deepening their relationship. It was with particular pleasure that the
the nation through fear and intimidation.            allowing for more independent anti-imperial-                     WPC delegation, conveyed the first official invitation for the participation in the World
     Amando said that the peace forces are           ist positions. He requested materials to take                    Peace Assembly in April 2008 in Caracas. The invitation was received with enthusiasm
combating the forces of reaction through his-        back to Chile to help in the formation of a                      and was a sign of the growing dynamism of the World Peace Council and of its capac-
torical education, developing networks and           new peace council.                                               ity to meet the enormous demands raised by the international situation, marked by the
cultural and political challenges to bourgeois            Sepiélveda said “the need to coordinate                     increased aggressiveness of imperialism.
power. He indicated that building an affili-         the working class and peace movement in                               The WPC delegation was received very warmly and had many opportunities to meet
ated peace organization within Paraguay to           Chile is a necessity; it needs to occur to help                  and talk with leaders of the government and the Lao People's Revolutionary Party. The
the WPC is great importance which will be            prevent resource wars for water, etc.”                           meeting was attended by the comrades Boun Nhang Xasanavong, General Director of
tackled in the coming year.                                                                                           the International Relations of the Mass Organisations Department of the LPR Party.
                                                     Special Note of Appreciation                                          A special moment was the meeting with the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Uruguay                                                                                                               Comrade Hiem Phommachanh, member of the Politburo of the LPR Party, in which
     Juan Canessa thanked the WPC assembly                The Canadian Peace Congress would                           the situation in the region and the world was discussed.
for the opportunity to participate in the meet-      like to express a special acknowledgement of                          Besides the strong common commitment to strengthening bilateral relations and
ings. Canessa briefly summarized the current         appreciation for the work of Maria Alejandra                     to reinforce the international peace movement, the delegation also got acquainted
political situation in Uruguay characterizing        Arias who works for the Andean parliament in                     with the social and economic situation in Laos and the outstanding undergoing
the content as “popular” and generally               her tireless work to translate for the Canadian                  projects for developing the country.
anti-imperialist nature. The Uruguay peace           Peace Congress delegate. She translated, took                         Despite the shortness of the visit, the WPC had the chance to visit the Vientiane Province
forces are gaining a great deal of experience        notes, and organized much of the meeting.                        and observe the important steps and achievements, especially at the Nam Ngum Hydropower
through the ant-imperialist fight back but are       With out her help this report would not have                     Plant, as well as the Rehabilitation Centre, Koutsambath, founded in 1992, which is hosting
confronted by a reactionary media.                   been possible. The Canadian Peace Congress                       the direct victims of the dirty US War against Vietnam and their families.
     Juan Canessa said that “Uruguay has             is very grateful for all of Maria’s efforts.                          That occasion was lived with emotion, during which the WPC expressed its heartfelt
                                                                                                                      respect and solidarity with the people of Laos, with their heroic struggle and key role
                                                                                                                      — so often forgotten — in the defeat of US imperialism in the Vietnam War. It is not
EDITORIAL: Report to the WPC Executive Committee                                                                      forgotten that, from 1964 to 1973, three million tons of cluster bombs were dropped
                                                                                             (from p. 3)              over Laos (one ton per inhabitant at the time); and that 30 years after the end of the
its condemnation of the European Constitu-           activity has been officially disclosed, with its                 war, around 30 percent of them have still not exploded. This is a genuine, prolonged
tion and any conventions which adopt war,            illegal abductions and arrests of hundreds                       crime against the people of Laos which is still without a solution in sight.
especially pre-emptive war, as a means to            of innocent citizens being made with the                              The Lao Peace and Solidarity Committee assured the WPC delegation about its
settle differences, our opposition to the at-        agreement of European governments, along                         intention to actively participate in the WPC Assembly in Caracas and its disposition
tempts under way to overturn governments             with the use of European airports for their                      to contribute to its success.
and finally our defence of the peoples’ right        transport. A monstrous monitoring system
to choose their own paths.                           has been set up, ranging from cameras spy-
     The domination of the new imperialist           ing on all of people’s activities all the way
world order is worsening the economic                to the establishment of databases including                         WPC RESOLUTION: FIVE YEARS AFTER THE INVASION OF IRAQ
situation of the working people and of the           DNA files. Thousands of demonstrators are
peoples in general in both developed and             being dragged into court and sentenced on                            WHEREAS, an unstable and frightened world is approaching the 5th anniver-
developing countries. The promotion of               false charges so that they and others will be                    sary of the invasion of Iraq and the 6th anniversary of the invasion of Afghanistan
capitalist restructuring with the withdrawal         intimidated.                                                     by US imperialism and its European and other junior partners, leading to untold
of workers’ gains and the implementation of               At the same time, the ideological offen-                    deaths and destruction; and
flexible forms of employment, the abolition          sive is growing and the falsifying of history                        WHEREAS, the US administration threatens World War III against Iran with
of collective agreements and the general-            is being pushed so as to justify the crimes                      unfounded claims and accusations reminiscent of the lies and forged arguments
ized privatizations in all sectors are caus-         of imperialism. Any country that does not                        used to hide the real purpose of the imperialist invasion of Iraq for oil and control
ing an increase in poverty, unemployment,            submit is considered, under imperialism, to                      of the Middle East; and
hunger and misery. Social contradictions             be undemocratic and any people that resists                          WHEREAS, the arms race, with new and more deadly weapons, has spiraled
are on the rise. Today 10 percent of the             is considered to be terrorist.                                   to over one trillion dollars annually, creating an ocean of weapons capable of
world’s population owns 90 percent of                     An attempt is under way to revive fascism                   destroying all humanity, devouring national treasuries for the profit of the death
the total wealth produced. Discontent is             in Europe. In the Baltic and other countries,                    merchants, depriving billions of people of basic human needs: food, clothing,
growing and the working people are wag-              collaborators and other Nazi criminals are                       shelter and water; and
ing struggles with which the peace move-             considered freedom fighters. Anti- fascists                          WHEREAS, the imperialist designs for the continued Israeli occupation of
ment can and must link up. It is becoming            are being persecuted. Communist parties are                      Palestine; the Israeli invasion and bombing of Lebanon; the US-India Nuclear Ex-
more evident every day that imperialism              illegal. Monuments to the victory over fascism                   change deal; support of the dictator Musharraf in Pakistan; use of US military bases
as a system on the whole and capitalism              are being torn down. Statues of SS officers                      in Somalia, Colombia, Philippines to intervene in their internal affairs; continued
not only are incapable of dealing with the           are being erected. Progressive movements                         blockade and threats against Cuba; establishment of an African Military Command
problems of humanity, but also are leading           are being slandered in order to poison the                       to invade Africa politically and economically; have, among others, has created a
it into barbarity.                                   minds of the younger generation.                                 global crisis and a threat to world peace; and
     In the recent period authoritarianism,               We must safeguard democratic rights,                            WHEREAS, in answer to this crisis, a Global Peace Movement of historic
policing and the offensive against democratic        the history of the movements for peace and                       proportions has emerged, labeled as “the second superpower,” struggling for peace
rights and liberties have become harsher.            progress, the sacrifices and the blood that has                  and justice, recognizing that imperialism is not invincible and can be defeated by
Worldwide popular reactions and demon-               been shed by the peoples for their freedom                       the united strength of the world’s peace loving people,
strations are facing often-bloody attacks by         and for social progress.                                             THEREFORE, the Secretariat of the World Peace Council calls upon all peace
the police and other repressive forces. In the            Regardless of any specific differences                      loving people, all organizations devoted to peace and justice, to march together in a
USA, the EU and in other countries laws are          that may exist amongst them, all peace                           global display of determination and will for peace, in common days of action, with
being passed which in the name of dealing            movements have the obligation to tell the                        protest demonstrations in central squares of cities and in front of US Embassies the
with terrorism do away with democratic rights        truth and not permit the ideological Middle                      days around the 5th Anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, March 20, 2008.
and freedoms. They give power and rights             Ages and obscurantism that imperialism is
to police authorities and secret services to         attempting to impose. We must safeguard                                                                                                WPC Secretariat
act without restraint. All citizens are under        the right of every people to choose its own                                                                                         November 21, 2007
suspicion and considered to be guilty. CIA           path. n
Page 12                                                                                                                PEACE MESSENGER
     VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1, January 2008                 Q U A R T E R LY P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E W O R L D P E A C E C O U N C I L ( W P C )      W W W. W P C - I N . O R G      INFO@WPC-IN.ORG




Peace NEWS                                     TWISTED JUSTICE IN MIAMI
                                                                                                                                                                                                 Manuel E. Yepe*


                                               S
                                                      imilar to the kidnapping of the Cuban             seems marvelous to many people but I am                   severe prison terms for five Cubans who pen-
                                                      boy, Elián González, seven years ago,             disappointed in it,” Elena Pérez expressed,               etrated counterrevolutionary groups to moni-
                                                      a five year-old Cuban girl is today the           and described her attempted suicide in a                  tor and denounce terrorist plans against their
                                               center of an international dispute over her              moment of weakness amidst a situation of                  homeland constantly under attack through the
                                               custody in the only place in the world where             desperation and destitution.                              passive complicity of US authorities.
                                               something like this could happen: the US city                 “One horrible night I decided that my chil-               On August 2005, the Federal Eleventh
“NO TO IMPERIALIST WARS”                       of Miami, in south Florida.                              dren would be better off without me and so I did          Circuit Appeals Court in Atlanta reversed those
“YES TO THE PEOPLES’ PEACE                          Like the Elian case that won world notori-          something stupid,” she declared. I am not crazy.          sentences decreed against the five anti-terror-
AND FRIENDSHIP”                                ety, the plaintiff is the father of the child, and       I have been depressed and stressed-out and                ist activists, who have been in jail since 1998
                                               the arguments of the kidnappers are mostly               spent many sleepless nights but I am ok.”                 under vile conditions and dispersed in different
Peace Olympics 2008                            based on the irrational policy of the United                  The U.S. judge, Jeri B. Cohen, risks her             prisons of several states of the US union.
                                               States against Cuba.                                     career attempting to act impartially in the Miami              In the Atlanta Appeals Court, three
    Under this slogan, the Greek Com-               In this case, the alleged kidnapper is a            environment, in a legal process which is becom-           judges unanimously made this ruling after
mittee for International Détente and           wealthy entrepreneur called Joe Cubas, in-               ing ever more political. She acknowledged that            observing the fraudulent process which had
Peace (EEDYE) together with many               volved in human trafficking, who, under the              the case would have another outcome, in which             occurred in Miami, although, at the time,
mass organizations and distinguished           façade of a sports agent, has made a fortune             “the United States government refuses to repatri-         the defense gave solid arguments that the
personalities is going to proceed with         in the illegal dealing of Cuban athletes. He             ate the child to a communist country where her            venue was unacceptable, but the acting judge
organizing the Peace Olympics 2008,            has been using intelligence logistics and US             father lives.” She also revealed that “employees          inexplicably rejected these.
during the year of the Olympic Games           subversion against the island, and the support           of the State of Florida” — the name given to the               The verdict of the Appeals Court noted
in Beijing.                                    of Cuban-American extremist groups which                 legal representation of a state government in trial       that the hostility and prejudice in the Miami
    The purpose of this initiative is:         have transmuted hatred of the Cuban socialist            — want the child to remain in the United States           environment, both in the public as the local
                                               project into a money-making business. This               in the custody of a Cuban American family.                press, made it impossible to hold an impartial
    • To bring to the limelight the
                                               includes political wheeling and dealing which            “They would have acted differently if the child’s         trial in that city “dominated by such marked
peoples all over the world who worry,
                                               involves top-ranking government officials of             father lived anywhere but Cuba.”                          prejudice against the Cuban government that a
react and struggle against the barbarity
                                               the State of Florida in the United States.                    “In over 10 years of presiding over cases            legal process was impossible against men who
they experience as a consequence of the
                                                    Bob Butterworth, Secretary of the Depart-           of child welfare I had never seen lawyers of              openly identified with the government of their
criminal action of imperialism, which
                                               ment of Children and Families in the State of            the Department of Children and Family of the              country and with the objective necessity of de-
causes the fires of war, hunger, poverty
                                               Florida (DCF in its English acronym), whose              State of Florida act against a father to raise            fending the Cuban people from terrorism.”
and environmental destruction.
                                               lawyers are battling to prevent the Cuban                his child unless he had repeatedly failed to                   With such a categorical statement by the
    • To denounce in the most decisive
                                               father from obtaining custody of his daughter,           comply with a court-ordered stipulations,”                Appeals Court, it was logical that the Pros-
way the constant slide of the Olympic
                                               told the Miami press that this “unusual” case            the judge declared.                                       ecution disallow the charges and immediately
Games from being a major cultural,
                                               is the costliest he has ever seen.                            Considering the tense relations between              release the five Cubans. But the opposite
athletic and mainly peace-loving event
                                                    The little girl is daughter of a Cuban              the United States and Cuba, I believe that                occurred. On the insistence of the Federal
to the point of being a market for the
                                               campesino from Cabaiguán in the central re-              “the father may never see his daughter                    government, the decision was reversed and
sponsors’ benefit and promotion, the
                                               gion of the island and Elena Pérez, a 35-year-           again if he returns to the island without her.”           the promoters of this legal aberration that was
market’s values, for commercialization
                                               old woman who left Cuba legally and arrived              It is easy to understand, however, that the               the trial in Miami against “The Five” were
and rivalries. However, the impunity of
                                               in the United States in December 2005 with               judge is working under great pressure, and                stimulated to commit more outrages.
the sponsors and the rivalries are not
                                               the daughter in question and her son. Shortly            that the trial is not taking place in a fair cli-              In this legal setting, a Cuban father fights
compatible with the Olympic ideals and
                                               after her arrival in Miami, her new husband,             mate of objectivity and impartiality.                     to recover his young daughter in Miami.
the fraternization of the people.
                                               Jesús Melendres, abandoned them.                              A clear example of the incompatibility of            ________
    • This initiative aims to pinpoint the
                                                    According to reports in the Miami press,            the Miami environment in a reasonable legal               * Manuel E. Yepe Menéndez is a journalist
necessity for the Olympic Games to be a
                                               Elena, evidently disturbed because of the eco-           process was the sentencing, in 2001, amidst               and professor at the Higher Institute of Inter-
celebration of peace and athletics in ac-
                                               nomic situation she faced for several months,            the hostile atmosphere of southern Florida, to            national Relations in Havana.
cordance with the people’s conscience.
                                               tried to commit suicide. This was the reason
    With the activities of the Peace           her children were taken from her. The DCF                     Press Release
Olympics 2008 we try to express the            took her children from her in March of 2006                   Department of Arab & International Relations /PLO
people’s voice. We make an effort to           and placed them in the care of Joe Cubas.                     Ramallah, Palestine — October 24th, 2007
organize various political, cultural,               When Rafael Izquierdo found out, he
and sports events with the participa-          decided to assume his duty and his right as                        The Israeli military raid against Palestinian inmates at the Negev prison on Monday 22nd
tion of representatives from popular           a father, and was able to travel to the United                had left one dead Palestinian and 250 injured. The act is one more page in the persistent Israeli
movements. We make an effort for the           States to bring his daughter back.                            policy of killing and torturing the Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli jails. Tens of Pal-
organization of activities and events                                                                        estinian prisoners were killed in the Israeli jails over the years either by direct assassination,
                                                    The mother has been categorical in declar-               torture and medical negligence.
all over Greece with the participation         ing that if she cannot have her daughter she                       Since a few months, the Israeli Ministry of Health admitted that the Israeli Jails authorities has
of athletes, artists, retired military offi-   wants her to return to Cuba with her father,                  been using the Palestinian prisoners as lab rats to test new medications without the knowledge or
cers, trade unions, workers federations,       “who loves her and wants to be with her.”                     the approval of those individuals. Ramifications of those medications are yet to be revealed.
personalities from art and culture, pro-       Anything would be better — the mother said —                       Israel is the last occupation state on earth; the only state that refuses to implement Interna-
fessors, youth organizations, students,                                                                      tional resolutions and treaties, it also refuses to deal with the Palestinian prisoners in its jails
                                               than leaving her in the United States in the care             are prisoners of war as stated by International and humanitarian treaties; torturing Palestinian
and distinguished personalities from           of Joe Cubas, who has kept the little girl for over           prisoners and risking their lives is held in criminal manners that need the interference of the
political and social life.                     a year and formally adopted her brother.                      International judicial bodies to.
    Among these initiatives, the EEDYE              According to the local press, the 13-year-                     The Israeli persistence on detaining more than 11,000 Palestinian prisoners reflects an
is going to organize a “Balkan Meeting         old adolescent told his mother that he wants                  Israeli reluctant towards implementation of the peace process articles.
of the Peace Movements” in Thes-                                                                                   DAIR confirms that there won't be a comprehensive peace without the unconditional release
                                               to stay with Joe Cubas amidst the luxury in                   of the Arab and Palestinian prisoners from the Israeli jails. DAIR calls upon all humanitarian
saloniki on the 1st and 2nd of March           which he is kept.                                             and international organizations not to spare any effort to secure the Palestinian prisoners in
2008, and the traditional Marathon                  Elena has declared that she regrets hav-                 the Israeli jails; all peace lovers and human rights defenders are invited to implement serious
Peace March in May 2008.                       ing left he small town of Cabaiguán where her                 steps to release all the prisoners in the Israeli jails without any condition.
                                               children were happy. “I know this country




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