Minneapolis, MN - Activists in the Twin Cities anti-war movement responded to President Obama’s Aug. 31 nationally televised speech on the U.S. war in Iraq at a press conference immediate following his address. Representatives from Military Families Speak Out, Women Against Military Madness, the Anti-War Committee, the Twin Cities Peace Campaign and others said that the U.S. occupation will continue and that the anti-war movement needs to continue the effort to get U.S. troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan.
A statement issues by the organizers of the press conference noted, “The occupation of Iraq is being rebranded, but the people of Iraq want an end to foreign interference in their country and the people of the U.S. want an end to the occupation.”
Jenny Eisert of the Anti-War Committee stated, “President Obama tonight has declared that ‘the war is over.’ We disagree. The U.S still has about 50,000 troops in Iraq and is increasing the number of U.S. contractors.”
Mike Perkins of Military Families Speak Out said the war “is not over for families with loved ones currently serving in Iraq whose relatives have changed overnight from ‘combat forces’ to ‘advisors.’”
Marie Braun of Women Against Military Madness and the Twin Cities Peace Campaign condemned the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan. She said, “The war in Afghanistan was never legitimate, it was never moral, it was never a ‘good war,’ and it is not going to keep us safe.”
Anti-war groups are planning several protests in the weeks and months ahead. The Anti-War Committee is organizing a Twin Cites protest against wars and occupations on Sept. 11.
National peace and anti-war groups have been invited to join a mass rally for Jobs and Justice called by the NAACP and many labor unions on Oct. 2 in Washington D.C. Plans are also being made for national protests on April 9, 2011.
The statement by organizers of the press conference concludes, “The anti-war movement will be in the streets demanding all U.S. troops be taken out of Iraq and for an end to the war in Afghanistan.”