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Chicago protests Trump’s attack in Iraq

By staff |
January 7, 2020
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Kobi Guillory of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression sp
Kobi Guillory of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression speaking at Chicago anti-war protest. (Fight Back! News/Staff)

Chicago, IL - As part of the national day of protest to demand U.S. troops out of Iraq, 1000 people rallied in front of Trump Tower in Chicago. After listening to speeches by numerous local activists, people marched across the Loop, Chicago’s central district, for several hours. One person was arrested by the Chicago Police Department, who were furious because the march disrupted traffic on the Magnificent Mile, a section of Michigan Avenue that is one of the most expensive shopping districts in the country. Later the crowd marched on Lake Shore Drive. At least one other person was arrested, but then un-arrested by the crowd.

Marching on Lake Shore Drive is a tradition that began with protests against the Iraq War in 1991 and continued in the second Iraq War. On March 19, 2003, 10,000 people took over the drive, and the police arrested over 800. Eventually the city had to pay out $12,000,000 to the marchers because CPD failed to issue warnings to the marchers. Then in the early years of the Black Lives Matter movement, seizing the Drive was done a number of times.

Linking war abroad to national oppression at home

During the rally, which was initiated by the ANSWER coalition, Kobi Guillory of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression spoke. Guillory explained, “We stand in full, unconditional solidarity with Iran. Solidarity is important because we know why America goes to war. It’s about profit, not any attempt to save lives or because Qassem Soleimani was a ‘bad guy,’ nor is it solely about Trump’s stupidity and arrogance. America has a long history of starting wars and killing millions of people in poor countries so billionaires can steal resources and exploit the people of those countries.”

“We have to oppose U.S. imperialism because the millions of people living under the constant threat that is American military occupation deserve the right to self-determination, which the U.S. violates on a daily basis.

“We also oppose U.S. imperialism because it affects Black and brown and working-class people here as well. LAPD, NYPD, and Boston PD released statements saying their police officers would get more resources in response to the murder of Soleimani, which means racial profiling and militarization of police, already ridiculously high, will increase. And I guarantee CPD will do the same.

“Police budgets all over the country see drastic increases as the U.S. military becomes more aggressive. There is a link between the imperialist, white supremacist violence of the U.S. military and the brutality, racial profiling, and dishonest tactics of police in America.

“Jon Burge learned how to torture people as a soldier, violating the sovereignty of Vietnam the way the U.S. military is currently violating the sovereignty of Iraq, Iran, and many other countries.

“Opposing U.S. imperialism is not just a moral obligation, but a tactical responsibility for all working and oppressed people in America and all over the world. We have the same oppressor, so we have to stand and fight together.

“The people of Iraq and Iran will defeat U.S. imperialism, and we have to put enough pressure on the U.S. government to end America’s military presence in the oppressed nations of the world.”