Yesterday marked the 16th Third Friday observance of the Iraq Moratorium, a locally-based, grassroots-powered, monthly anti-war protest.
Heavy snow blanketed much of the Northeast and Midwest and definitely caused some cancellations of Moratorium Day events.
Although reports have just started coming in to the website this morning, I don’t mind declaring the day a triumph.
And that’s not movement bravado. Two events–one national and blogospheric, one local and on the ground–that just happened to take place on the Third Friday of December show the growing importance of this campaign.
First, the MoveOn.org crew announced the results of their members’ vote on this year’s priorities, with hundreds of thousands of members weighing in. The process was supposed to produce three national priorities for the group for 2009. Close voting resulted in the adoption of four. Along with national healthcare, rescuing the economy and global warming, MoveOn promises to prioritize the fight to “End the War in Iraq” in 2009. Unless current trends are suddenly reversed, this will require MoveOn organizers to challenge, directly and actively, major parts of the Iraq policy of the incoming administration. Mobilizing the MoveOn base will provide a real boost to the struggle to end this unjust and unjustifiable war.
Here in NYC, the hundred-plus students who had occupied the New School “suspended” their takeover at 3 AM on Friday after a sudden victory. The administration said it would give in to most of their immediate demands! (The seizure was diaried here with an interesting and contentious comments thread.)
How is this connected to the Iraq Moratorium? Among the demands still on the table are the resignations of university president Bob Kerrey, a “liberal” advocate of the Iraq war from the start, and the treasurer of the Board of Trustees, a gent named Robert B. Millard. Millard is a top exec at a company called L-3 Communications.
New School SDS discovered that part of what falls under L-3’s definition of “communications” is providing torturers to the US military at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib! They launched their campaign against L-3 place a year ago on Moratorium Day. They have continued to dog Millard and observe Moratorium Day since. (Their website has detailed dirt on L-3.)
Add to this the fact that just a week ago the largest anti-war coalition in the US, United For Peace & Justice, adopted the Iraq Moratorium as a project at their National Assembly. Going into 2009, the Iraq Moratorium is on a roll!
Me, I’ve already got January 16 marked on my calendar, and can only urge, “Go, thou, and do likewise.”
Crossposted at Daily Kos.