More on Las Vegas's March 17 Protest
In Las Vegas on March 17, 2007 (time still to be determined), a group calling themselves the Las Vegas Peace Coalition is planning to hold a massive march against the occupation of Iraq in front of the Lloyd D. George Federal Courthouse. The Las Vegas Peace Coalition is made up of various groups and individuals, including: MoveOn, Democracy for America, Nevada Workers Against the War, Nevada Desert Experience, Food Not Bombs, and members of many different unions and progressive political parties. The group states that "ending this war must be a priority, the elected officials must do more than non binding resolutions, they must cut off funding and demand this occupation be ended immediately. Not one more death or one more dollar for Bush's war of aggression" (announcement).
The protest is coming off momentum from an earlier protest this past January 27, 2007 (1 | 2) which attracted between 75 and 150 people. When it comes to actions against the occupation in Las Vegas, this is a good number of participants. The history of anti-occupation actions fluctuates in Las Vegas as it seems to do around the nation.
In this case, many of the groups involved are supportive of the Democratic Party. Where was the Democratic Party after the occupation started back in 2003? It was at that time that the resources and influence of elected Democrats was most important to stopping the occupation, but instead, it was used to support the occupation. The excuse given at the time from patriotic Democrats was that they could no longer protest the war once it began and had to, instead, support the troops. Years later, billions of dollars later, thousands of dead innocent people later, they finally realize the error of their ways and openly protest the occupation of Iraq?!? Something doesn't feel right. This very occupation that they are now protesting couldn't have existed without them ... and certainly wouldn't have been as harmful if Democrats would've protested this occupation from the beginning.
If one looks closely at the signs many Democrats carry, one will see that they focus on impeaching Bush/Cheney or they focus on how it's Bush and Cheney and their right wing accomplices that have kept this occupation raging on for so long. The implication is that we need new leaders. The goal of getting involved with anti-war actions and organizing in order to replace the current regime with Democrats is obvious based on the Democrats for America's recent training on Feb. 10, 2007.
If the Democratic Party is successful in amassing large numbers of people against the war in 2007, then they will be successful in winning a presidential election in 2008. In some sense, by supporting this protest, one might also be supporting the Democratic Party. What can we do to prevent even more dangerous co-optation by these groups that support the Democratic Party?
We must point out the truth about the Democratic Party and its complicity regarding the illegal occupation of Iraq every chance we get. In meetings. During protests. Anywhere we see someone holding a sign that suggests we impeach Bush, Cheney, or whoever, we need to question them about their support for the Democratic Party and how they can be against this occupation while supporting corporations and candidates who thrive from occupation and war. We must question those who support Democratic candidates about the source of their donations and funding. We must speak out and act against those that benefit from donations coming from corporations who profit from war and occupation.
According to Opensecrets.org, the current Democratic Party Senate leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, holds stock in corporations such as Bank of America, Citigroup, Exxon-Mobil, Apache Corp, Chevron, General Electric, IBM, JP Morgan Chase & Co, Microsoft Corp, Pfizer, Procter & Gamble, Wal-Mart, and many others. He's estimated to be worth anywhere between $2,235,107 and $5,179,000 ... this is probably a low estimate. His campaign contributions in 2004 came from corporations like Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon Co, DynCorp, RJ Reynolds Tobacco, Tyson Foods, Clear Channel Communications, Time Warner, Viacom, Walt Disney, and on and on and on.
Oh and just to be clear, we need to hold the Republican Party accountable in this manner as well, just in case they try to co-opt any movements any time soon.
If we decide to support the current Democratic Party co-opted movement against occupation and war, then we must also be clear that we will not support the war-profiteering corporations and we will not support the political parties and candidates that harbor them.
Saturday February 10, 2007 at 03:25 PM
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