Chicago Conference Against War and Imperialism, March 20-21, 2004

January 13, 2004

One of the most urgent questions facing the American people is strengthening the anti-war struggle and developing it as an independent, proactive movement.

More than 2 years ago, the U.S. government declared a so-called "war against international terrorism" which it said would "last for decades." Already, the U.S. has invaded and occupied Afghanistan and Iraq and keeps escalating counter-insurgency wars in these countries.

As part of the "war on terrorism," the U.S.-backed Israeli aggressors are stepping up their war against the Palestinian people. So too, the Bush administration is preparing wars against Syria and Iran; U.S. military "advisers" are directing counter-insurgency wars in Colombia and the Philippines; the U.S. is threatening war against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The Pentagon is spending unprecedented sums building up a vast arsenal of weapons of mass destruction. U.S. imperialism has officially adopted the doctrine of "preventive war" including even the use of nuclear first-strikes against nonnuclear countries and proclaimed that every country must accept U.S. dictates or "be treated as terrorist." The plain truth is that the "war on terrorism" is U.S. imperialism's blueprint for world domination through force of arms.

During these 2 years, tens of millions of Americans, from many walks of life, have come out in opposition to the government's war program. In the face of the chauvinism of the government, despite the attempt of the monopoly-controlled media to ignore or slander the anti-war movement, in the face of repression and countless other obstacles, the American people are bringing their agenda for peace to centerstage. A new generation of activists is coming forward. People are looking into root causes and grappling with the question of how to organize themselves into an ongoing, proactive movement. People are linking together the many currents of anti-war, anti-imperialist struggle and standing up in support of the liberation movements of the oppressed nations.

So too, on a world scale. In more than 150 countries, people are organizing massive protest movements against U.S. imperialism's occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq. The Iraqi and Afghan peoples are organizing their struggles against U.S. colonialism. In Palestine, Colombia, the Philippines and elsewhere, the peoples are fighting for national liberation. Across Latin America and the world, the workers and peoples are rising against U.S. economic and political domination and military pressure. The peoples and governments in Cuba, North Korea and other countries are standing in defense of their sovereignty and against U.S. pressure and aggression. The peoples are creating, through their own struggles and organizations, a world front against war and imperialism, in defense of the sovereignty of countries and for the liberation and progress of the peoples.

The American people are taking and must take their place in this worldwide struggle of humanity. We have always fought against the aggressive wars launched by "our own" government - in 1898 in opposition to U.S. aggression against Cuba and the Philippines, against World War I, against the wars in Korea and Vietnam, El Salvador and Nicaragua, and today in Iraq and Afghanistan - and we must continue to do so as long the monopoly capitalist class and its government exploit and attack the peoples of other countries. The agenda of the American people aims at nothing less than ending militarism, war, racism, colonialism and imperialism altogether.

We are convening a Conference Against War and Imperialism in Chicago, Illinois on March 20-21, 2004 to take up the urgent tasks facing the anti-war movement.

The Conference will present in-depth analysis on the features and causes of the so-called "war on terrorism" with the aim of strengthening our struggles and further developing the political independence and program of the anti-war movement. The Conference will be organized to insure maximum discussion and participation so that everyone can sum up their experience, contribute their views and work out guidelines for future work.

We call on the workers, anti-war activists and everyone concerned about the cause of peace to take part in the Conference Against War and Imperialism and join in the work of preparing for it and popularizing it.

ONLY THE PEOPLE CAN STOP THE WARS!

The Chicago Conference Against War and Imperialism was initiated by the Chicago Branch of the Workers Party, U.S.A. For more information, contact the Organizing Committee, P.O. Box 25716, Chicago, IL 60625; (312) 409-1127