We invite all organizations to send comments and proposals for the Anti-War Assembly and related activities at the coming World Social Forum (WSF) in Porto Alegre, Brasil this January 26-31, 2005. Deadline for comments is on November 29.
World Social Forum,Porto Alegre, Brasil January 26-31, 2005
The victory of George W. Bush in the recent US elections has given him political capital to, in his own words, “move full steam ahead” beginning with the bombardment of Fallujah. Secretary of State Colin Powell reinforced this by stating that Bush would continue pursuing his “aggressive and interventionist foreign policy” adding that it would act alone where necessary. This foreign policy will place the Middle East as its priority.
This is a critical time for the peace, justice and anti-war movements the world over. And with the Bush regime more determined to dominate the world beginning with the Middle East, the battleground of Iraq and Palestine remain the movements’ priorities. The global movements against war need to come together and build a stronger and more organized global resistance against corporate globalization and US imperialism forging stronger links with the movements in the region.
The World Social Forum (WSF) in Porto Alegre this January 2005 offers this opportunity. Building on the consensus from the Jakarta Peace Conference in May 2003, the Global Assembly of the Anti-War Movement in Mumbai in January 2004 and the Beirut Anti-War and Anti-Globalization Assembly in September 2004, the proposal is to convene a Global Anti-War Assembly at the next WSF.
These assemblies have gathered social movements, organizations, coalitions, political parties and networks from over 50 countries, with the assembly in Beirut gathering more than 260 representatives from around the world, including 150 representatives from the Arab world, thus deepening and strengthening the bonds across regions. These processes have brought people together from a variety of political positions creating a stronger and more diverse resistance against corporate globalization and US imperialism.
The Beirut Assembly, the most recent of these gatherings, reaffirmed its support for the principles of unity and plan of action articulated in the Jakarta Peace Consensus and committed to continue waging the struggle against the occupation of Iraq, Palestine, corporate-led globalization and dictatorships.
As the movements enter this crucial time of struggle against corporate globalization and US imperialism, however, it is critical to discuss concrete actions and strategies to prevail in the struggle in the Middle East as well as in other parts of the South.
Among the issues to be addressed are the ways we can coordinate actions across borders, the employment of tactics such as demonstrations, sanctions, and civil disobedience, how to raise the costs of being US allies in the war for governments such as those in Britain and Italy, building stronger links between the global peace movement and civil society movements in the Arab and Muslim worlds, and support for on-going anti-interventionist struggles in Latin America, Africa, and Asia.
THE VENUE AND PROCESS
The WSF this January 2005 will be organized in a new way following themes. For more on this, please read the attached letter from the Hemispheric Social Alliance.
The Anti-War Assembly will be held in the WSF with the proposed schedule:
No US Bases/Militarization Strategy Session Jan 27, 9-12am
Global Anti-War Movement Strategy Session Jan 27, 2-6pm
Global Anti-War Assembly Jan 27, 7-9pm
This is just a proposed schedule, this is still subject to discussion.
Please send all comments and proposals to:
Gonzalo Berron, Hemispheric Social Alliance: [email protected]
Mary Lou Malig, Focus on the Global South: [email protected]