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[OPIRG-EVENTS] Nonviolent action (Ottawa Feb 14) End Canada's role in Iraq War



"Hate cannot drown out hate; only love can do that."- Martin Luther King, Jr.

The War Dept. Needs a Change of Heart!
Protest The Unspeakable Atrocity of War and Sanctions
Mass Silent Sit-in at the War Dept., Ottawa
Surround the War Dept. with the
Power of Love on Valentine's Day, Friday, February 14, Morning Rush Hour
Buses to Ottawa on Thursday, Feb. 13

Stop the war against the people of Iraq.
Bring Canadian troops home now
Full medical/financial compensation for veterans of the 1991 war against Iraq.
Turn the War Dept. into the Housing Dept.

Why a Silent Sit-in?
We will refuse to speak because the unspeakable has been taking place since 
1991 in Iraq, and continues to unfold - unspeakable acts directed from 
Canada's War Dept. and the U.S.
Pentagon. Our silence and peace will be a stark contrast to the media noise
of war and mass murder. It will be a strong, forceful expression of
disapproval, of non-cooperation with evil. Our physical presence, through
nonviolence, is the alternative: solid, deeply felt love for the victims of
war, and compassion and love for our opponents - those making war who are
divided from the best part of themselves. It is only by making ourselves
accessible to them that they will come to us to dialogue, to get answers to
questions, to find solutions that do not involve murder.

Buses leave for Ottawa the morning of Thurs. Feb. 13, return late Fri. Feb 14.
Bus tickets $40 return*, includes accommodation/meals. To book a seat call:
Toronto: (416) 651-5800, Hamilton: (905) 730-1181, 905-523-7879,
Kitchener-Waterloo: (519) 578-1425 (call after 3:30 pm), Guelph: (519) 
824-2091, St. Catharines: (905) 688-5550 ext. 3977.
In Ottawa call (613) 237-0730
(Groups are also organizing in London and Peterborough)

Sponsored by Homes not Bombs, tasc@web.ca, hasc@tao.ca
*If you can't make it but would like to subsidize a bus ticket (or two or
more!), cheques can be made out to Homes not Bombs, sent to PO Box 73620,
509 St. Clair Ave. West, Toronto, ON M6C 1C0. Thanks!

Lots of layers of warm clothing to protect against the cold.
Sleeping bag since we are sleeping on church floors
Extra food and snacks
Homemade Valentines with messages of peace (or school-made messages!)
Valentine-making materials that we can work on at the sit-in.
Placards and banners with messages that will "speak" for us
If you can organize donations of food in your area to bring to Ottawa 
(bread, crackers veggies, fruit), that would be great! Those snacks will 
come in handy if we are at the sit-in for an extended period of time
Cardboard or green garbage bags to sit on when we hold the sit-down 
protest. We will likely be sitting either on the sidealk or on the pavement 
in front of the entrance to the War Dept.

When you arrive late afternoon in Ottawa, we will prepare a big dinner and 
discuss getting into affinity groups. There will be a large scenario 
meeting to discuss a number of different options, and we will check 
people's comfort levels with the various scenarios. We will also offer some 
last minute spaces for nonviolence skills sharing. A lawyer is on call all 
day Friday for us. We will have a legal/jail support team in place in the 
event of arrests. There will be clear lines drawn so those not wishing to 
risk arrest can avoid that potentiality. We will rise early the morning of 
Feb 14 (perhaps 5:45 am) for breakfast and in order to walk to the War 
Dept. in time to greet the arriving employees. We are prepared to stay 
there for a significant period of time. Across the street from the War 
Dept. is a major mall which has coffee places, bathrooms, and other 
amenities in the event we are left out there for a long time in the cold. 
We will also provide directions to other warming spaces.

Although this is unlikely, we would still have to point out that Canada 
needs to match words with actions. After all, Canada continues to enforce 
the sanctions against the people of Iraq with almost 1,000 soldiers. Much 
of the high-tech weaponry being used by the U.S. and U.K. is built by 
Canadian companies. The depleted uranium munitions spewing radioactive 
poison over Iraq have been processed in Canada (from uranium mined and 
exported from Canada). And veterans from 1991 are still not provided with 
adequate compensation and treatment for Gulf War Syndrome. The only way to 
say no to war is to say no to war. As the federal government considers a 
new budget, we also need to remind Parliament of the need for homes, not 

We did not know when we first announced this action that Feb. 14 is also 
the next major report from Hans Blix, so the world will be paying close 
attention to this crucial issue. Our action will be even more timely!

Below is one of the potential attack scenarios discussed on CBS News. Like 
any war planning, it is obscene, it is unthinkable, it is unspeakable. Let 
us go to Ottawa without fear, with love in our hearts and a determination 
to stop such atrocities as those discussed below.

Iraq Faces Massive U.S. Missile Barrage
WASHINGTON, Jan. 24, 2003 (CBS News)

They're calling it "A-Day," A as in airstrikes so devastating they would 
leave Saddam's soldiers unable or unwilling to fight.

If the Pentagon sticks to its current war plan, one day in March the Air 
Force and Navy will launch between 300 and 400 cruise missiles at targets 
in Iraq. As CBS News Correspondent David Martin reports, this is more than 
the number that were launched during the entire 40 days of the first Gulf War.

On the second day, the plan calls for launching another 300 to 400 cruise 

"There will not be a safe place in Baghdad," said one Pentagon official who 
has been briefed on the plan.

"The sheer size of this has never been seen before, never been contemplated 
before," the official said.

The battle plan is based on a concept developed at the National Defense 
University. It's called "Shock and Awe" and it focuses on the psychological 
destruction of the enemy's will to fight rather than the physical 
destruction of his military forces.

"We want them to quit. We want them not to fight," says Harlan Ullman, one 
of the authors of the Shock and Awe concept which relies on large numbers 
of precision guided weapons.

"So that you have this simultaneous effect, rather like the nuclear weapons 
at Hiroshima, not taking days or weeks but in minutes," says Ullman.

In the first Gulf War, 10 percent of the weapons were precision guided. In 
this war 80 percent will be precision guided.

The Air Force has stockpiled 6,000 of these guidance kits in the Persian 
Gulf to convert ordinary dumb bombs into satellite-guided bombs, a weapon 
that didn't exist in the first war.

"You're sitting in Baghdad and all of a sudden you're the general and 30 of 
your division headquarters have been wiped out. You also take the city 
down. By that I mean you get rid of their power, water. In 2,3,4,5 days 
they are physically, emotionally and psychologically exhausted," Ullman 
tells Martin.

Last time, an armored armada swept into Kuwait and destroyed Saddam's elite 
republican guard divisions in the largest tank battle since the World War 
II. This time, the target is not the Iraqi army but the Iraqi leadership, 
and the battle plan is designed to bypass Iraqi divisions whenever possible.

If Shock and Awe works, there won't be a ground war.

Not everybody in the Bush Administration thinks Shock and Awe will work. 
One senior official called it a bunch of bull, but confirmed it is the 
concept on which the war plan is based.

Last year, in Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan, the U.S. was badly 
surprised by the willingness of al Qaeda to fight to the death. If the 
Iraqis fight, the U.S. would have to throw in reinforcements and win the 
old fashioned way by crushing the republican guards, and that would mean 
more casualties on both sides.

Statement from CBS News Anchor Dan Rather: "We assure you this report 
contains no information that the Defense Department thinks could help the 
Iraqi military

Toronto: (416) 651-5800,
Hamilton: (905) 730-1181, 905-523-7879,
Kitchener-Waterloo: (519) 578-1425 (call after 3:30 pm),
Guelph: (519) 824-2091,
St. Catharines: (905) 688-5550 ext. 3977.
Ottawa: (613) 237-0730

this was forwarded to you by:

Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT)
(A network of individuals and NGOs across Canada and around the world)
Email: ad207@ncf.ca  Web: http://www.ncf.ca/coat

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