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reminder: Ottawa's "Air Show" (i.e. War Show) tuesday night

> The War Show is Returning to Ottawa! (September 16-17, 2000)
> Planning Meeting
> Tuesday, July 18, 7 p.m.
> 280 Metcalfe, 5th floor
> Please join us to discuss plans to oppose Ottawa's premiere war event.
> The war show this year will celebrate, glorify and romanticise NATO's
> latest war fighting technology.
> This brainstorming/planning meeting is co-sponsored by:
> the Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT) and Homes Not Bombs (HNB) -
> Ottawa.
> For more information, please contact COAT (231-3076)  or HNB (237-6278 or
> 777-3058)
> ---------------------
> Background information:
> The official theme of Ottawa's War Show spectacle this year is: "Between
> Best Friends." (Organisers describe this year's purpose as: "Commemorating
> the Special Relationship Between Canada and our NATO Partners.")  As such,
> the war show will be a showcase for NATO to flaunt the warfighting
> abilities of their warplanes.
> Many of the world's most sophisticated, expensive and DEADLY warplanes
> attend Ottawa's War Show every year.  Also known as the "National Capital
> Air Show," this huge public event attracts thousands of families to revel
> in the beauty and majesty of war technology.  Every year, the latest
> weapons of war come to our city (and to about 500 other communities across
> North America!) to entertain children and adults alike.  It's part of a
> growing phenomena of militarism which is infusing our culture.  These
> spectacle's are among the world's largest mass cultural events.  They
> the interests of the military industrial complex by glorifying and
> romanticising a culture of war and violence.  These events are part of the
> process of manipulating public understanding about the Canadian
> government's reasons for supporting US and NATO-led wars.  War shows help
> to "manufacture consent" for war.  They are also a major recruiting tool
> for the armed forces.
> Because the Ottawa war show so blatantly promotes warplanes which are
> designed to "deliver" bombs and missiles in war, including nuclear weapons
> and other weapons of mass destruction, we are presented with a unique
> opportunity to raise public awareness on many issues.  This is an
> opportunity for us to build alliances between groups and movements
> concerned with peace, human rights, social justice, environment and
> economic issues, like the collosal waste of money which these weapons
> systems represent.  Building our opposition to this war show demonstrates
> our own understanding of their theme, i.e., "Between Best Friends."
> Countering the propaganda of the Ottawa War Show offers activists from
> movements an excellent opportunities to deal with a vast array of critical
> issues.  Among these is the need to raise awareness about Canada's
> involvement in war and particularly to refocus public attention on NATO's
> devastating war against Yugoslavia.  The effects of that war continue to
> felt.  There are many human and environmental impacts which will damage
> Balkan region for generations to come.  NATO's nuclear policies will also
> be a focal point for those who are understandably disturbed by the
> of numerous nuclear weapons delivery systems in our very own backyard
> actually, above our backyards!).
> The War Show's "Performers"
> Last spring at the Ottawa War Show, during the war against Yugoslavia, the
> following NATO warplanes were strutting their stuff over our city:
> Tornado IDS
> E-2C Hawkeye
> P-3 Orion
> AV-8B Harrier II
> A-10 Thunderbolt
> F/A-18 Hornet
> B-52 Stratofortress
> F-117A Nighthawk
> C-130 Hercules
> KC-135 Stratotanker
> B-1B Lancer
> F-16 Fighting Falcon
> CF-18
> During the previous year's war show, a B-2 nuclear bomber flew over
>  (At US$2.2 BILLION! EACH, the B-2 is the most expensive warplane ever
> built.  Imagine the social and environmental programs we could build with
> just a fraction of what it cost to construct each of these nuclear
> Looking at the list of warplanes which have attended Ottawa's recent war
> shows brings into mind virtually all of the dozens of wars, interventions,
> invasions and campaigns of state terror and repression that have been
> launched during the past 50 years.  Take your pick: Iraq, Turkey, Vietnam,
> Laos, Cambodia, Iran, Lebanon, Panama, El Salvador, Guatemala, Korea,
> Libya, Grenada, Nicaragua, etc., etc.  The war planes which disturb the
> skies over our city during this annual event have struck fear and horror
> the hearts of millions of people around the world.  Why do these planes by
> smiles and laughter to the hearts of so many of our fellow citizens?  Why
> are people so enthralled and delighted by these tools of war which
> destroyed the lives of so many?  How can we use this event as a way of
> countering a growing Canadian acceptance of war culture and work to build
> culture of peace?
> Celebrating a "Culture of Peace"
> The year 2000 is the UN year for a "Culture of Peace"  which the UN has
> defined as:
> * A set of values, attitudes, traditions, modes of behaviour and ways of
> life based on respect for life, ending of violence and promotion and
> practice of non-violence through education, dialogue and co-operation;
> * Full respect for and promotion of all human rights and fundamental
> freedoms;
> * Commitment to peaceful settlement of conflicts; respect for and
> promotion of the right to development;
> * Respect for and promotion of equal rights of and opportunities for women
> and men;
> * Respect for and promotion of the rights of everyone to freedom of
> expression, opinion and information;
> * Adherence to the principles of freedom, justice, democracy, tolerance,
> solidarity, co-operation, pluralism, cultural diversity, dialogue and
> understanding at all levels of society and among nations.
> The year 2000 also marks the beginning of what the UN has declared to be
> the "International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-violence for the
> Children of the World."    What better way to celebrate peace and
> non-violence than by opposing and resisting this outrageous symbol of a
> culture of war and violence.  We can have fun building an alternative
> culture of peace and non-violence by following the example of those who
> organized a "Festival of Life" to counter the recent war show in Hamilton.
> The War Show's Media Partners
> The following media were listed as "partners" of the war show last year:
> CFRA, CJOH, CHOT, Le Droit, Kool FM, The Bear, and Young Country.
> In 1998 the list included: BBS - CJOH/CHRO, CHEZ 106, Majic 100, Ottawa
> Can we expect balanced and fair coverage of our opposition/resistence to
> this war show when so many media outlets have shamelessly become
> of the event?  No, not likely, but when did that ever stop us before?
> (Actually, during COAT's opposition to the Ottawa War Show over the past
> three years, quite extensive media coverage has been received, especially
> from CBC radio and the Citizen, which have not been war show "partners.")
> Hope to see you at the upcoming meeting(s).
> If you can't attend the next meeting, but wish to help our campaign,
> keep in touch!
> Cheers,
> Richard
> P.S.  Good news!  The "high tech/aerospace" military trade show (i.e.,
> bazaar) component of the Ottawa War Show will not be held this year!
> ------------------------------------------------------
>                    Richard Sanders
> Coordinator, Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT)
>   541 McLeod St., Ottawa Ontario Canada  K1R 5R2
>       Tel.:  613-231-3076    Fax: 613-231-2614
>                  Email: ad207@ncf.ca

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