MAIN MOTION (AS AMENDED) THE LABOR CONFERENCE TO STOP THE WAR
Mobilize the Labor Movement Through Workers’ Actions to Stop the War!
Whereas, the overwhelming majority of people in the U.S. and around the world oppose the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and
Whereas, both major American political parties, Democrats and Republicans, have continued to vote to fund these wars, and
Whereas, the international labor movement through workers action has the power to stop the war, and
Whereas, the people of Iraq and Afghanistan are being killed and those countries destroyed, as U.S. imperial might and its regional allies, the Zionists and puppet Arab monarchists and generals threaten to expand attacks to Iran and Syria, while Palestinian rights are blatantly denied, and
Whereas, the bloody war abroad is waged against Iraqis and Afghanis, while the “war on terror” at home is targeting American working people, oppressed minorities and immigrants,
1. One of the first targets of government repression since 9/11 was the ILWU, which during longshore contract negotiations in 2002 was threatened by the Bush administration with a military occupation of the docks. 2. Recently, under the guise of Homeland Security two black longshoremen were attacked by police in the port of Sacramento, victims of racial profiling and police brutality, while at the start of the war scores of antiwar protesters and longshore workers were shot by police during a demonstration in the port of Oakland. 3. Victims of Hurricane Katrina, mostly black and the poor, in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast died needlessly as the world witnessed a callous and racist disregard for their lives by the U.S. government. And the hanging noose from the schoolyard tree in Jena, Louisiana shows how deeply rooted racism is in America. 4. People here are victims of government repression- spying, extraordinary rendition, attacks by police against antiwar protesters, -- all violations of civil liberties supposedly protected by the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The rights of women to equality in the workplace, freedom from sexual violence and harassment and control over their own bodies, have all been eroded. 5. As the great anti-imperialist American labor leader, Eugene V. Debs said from prison during World War I, “It is the master class that declares war. It is the subject class that fights the battles.” And it is true today as working class youth are used in a bloody imperial quest for oil and power in the Middle East. 6. And both political parties threaten to expand the war to Iran, Syria and Lebanon, while repressing Palestinians and denying their fundamental rights as a people.
Therefore be it resolved that this conference calls for participants to go back to their unions committed to the urgent task of organizing actions, including strikes where possible, at the workplace against the war, recognizing that only an independent mobilization of labor can stop these wars and withdraw the troops immediately.
Addendum: From the workshop “Middle East: The War for Oil and Empire” a motion was passed “calling for educating and mobilizing rank and file workers in union locals and in organized forums about the false nature of the Category of Terror, to expose the role of our rulers in using state power to stage terror events as a pretext for repression, imperial war and the massive destruction of our rights as part of a heightened class war on working people everywhere.”