March 19 International Day of Action
The people of the world are in motion. From Egypt to Bahrain, a wave of struggle is sweeping the Arab world. Here, in the United States, hundreds of thousands of working families are marching for union rights in Wisconsin, Ohio and elsewhere. Students are taking action to stop budget cuts and tuition hikes on campuses throughout the country.
These events show that only the people have the power to make change. They also prove once again that collective action matters. It is time for the anti-war movement to take our message to the streets. March 19, the 8th anniversary of the criminal “Shock and Awe” invasion of Iraq, will be an important step in the struggle.
On March 19, tens of thousands of people will demand an end to U.S. war and military intervention abroad and funding for people’s needs at home. Mass demonstrations are planned in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and many other cities across the United States and the world. Click here for a list of protests.
As we build for March 19, the anti-war movement must strongly oppose all U.S. threats targeting Libya. Eight years after the launch of the Iraq war, which has taken one million lives, the U.S. government is threatening another war, this time in Libya. This is a critical issue for the anti-war movement in the United States.
U.S. threatens Libya with intervention, war
The drumbeat for U.S. intervention in Libya’s civil war is getting louder by the day.
On March 1, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee: “‘The stakes are high. … A strong and strategic American response will be essential,’ not only in Libya but throughout the Middle East, if the United States is to protect its national security.” (Washington Post)
In the past few days, the United States, the United Nations Security Council, Britain and the European Union have imposed sanctions on the Libyan government. There has been open talk about imposing and enforcing a no-fly zone. Hillary Clinton today said Washington is “taking no options off the table”—a not-so-veiled threat of military attack.
At least three U.S. warships, including a destroyer already in the Mediterranean and two amphibious assault craft in the Red Sea are currently en route to the nearby Suez Canal. These provocative moves are meant to send a clear signal to the Libyan government that the U.S. military is ready, willing and able to intervene to protect its interests.
U.S./U.N. intervention will not bring “democracy” or “freedom” to the Libyan people—quite the contrary. There is no such thing as “humanitarian intervention” for the U.S. government. If Washington truly supported democracy, it would cease propping up the brutal Saudi monarchy, stop supporting the suppression of protesters in Bahrain and Yemen, and end all aid to the Israeli apartheid state.
The U.S. government only takes action to forward the interests of Big Oil, Wall Street bankers and massive corporations. The lessons of Afghanistan, Iraq and countless additional U.S. interventions reveal this to be all too true.
Libya has the largest oil reserves in Africa. Washington knows this well. It would like nothing more than to have a stable client government in place that would allow U.S. bases on the ground and control of the oil supply.
As we prepare for mass anti-war demonstrations across the country on March 19, it is crucial that all anti-war and progressive people in the United States stand together to oppose any U.S. or foreign military intervention in Libya.
Read these articles below for more background and analysis on Libya: