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Announcement :: [none]

Invitation to build a Virginia anti-war network

Please join fellow anti-war activists in Richmond for a day of networking and movement building on Jan. 8 at Asbury United Methodist Church.

What has been lacking has been a sustainable way for us to stay in touch, support each others' work and coordinate actions. Anti-war activists in Richmond are proposing that different groups and individuals from across the state gather to form a workable organization or network through which we may better collaborate toward our shared goals.

The most recent statewide mobilization, on July 3 in Richmond, brought together 1,000 people in support of these three demands:

1) Real sovereignty for Iraq - bring the troops home now!
2) End the occupations of Iraq, Haiti, Afghanistan & Palestine!
3) Money for jobs & human needs, not war!
In addition, we are proposing a fourth demand:

4) No to racism, sexism & the oppression of lesbians, gays, bisexuals & transgendered people!

If you and your group agree with these four demands, we invite you to join us in Richmond on Saturday, January 8, at Asbury United Methodist Church, 324 N. 29th St. That's on the corner of 29th and East Marshall streets in Church Hill, one block north of East Broad Street. The gathering will start at 10 a.m. and finish up by 9 p.m.
from: Organizing Committee for a Virginia Anti-War Network
c/o PO Box 5021, Richmond, VA 23220 l E-mail: richmond-J20 (at) riseup.net

Dear friends,

The past few years in Virginia have seen inspiring energy poured into the anti-war movement, with a lot of excellent work done by many organizations and individuals. Folks in Charlottesville hosted a 1,000-person strong march in early 2003 to oppose the invasion of Iraq. Another 2,000 marched in Richmond. Organizers in Norfolk have protested on Mother's Day during 2003 and 2004, searching to honor the true origins of that day for peace. Many activists have traveled to Fort Benning, Ga. to attend protests against the School of the Americas.

What has been lacking has been a sustainable way for us to stay in touch, support each others' work and coordinate actions. Anti-war activists in Richmond are proposing that different groups and individuals from across the state gather to form a workable organization or network through which we may better collaborate toward our shared goals.

The most recent statewide mobilization, on July 3 in Richmond, brought together 1,000 people in support of these three demands:

1) Real sovereignty for Iraq - bring the troops home now!
2) End the occupations of Iraq, Haiti, Afghanistan & Palestine!
3) Money for jobs & human needs, not war!
In addition, we are proposing a fourth demand:

4) No to racism, sexism & the oppression of lesbians, gays, bisexuals & transgendered people!

If you and your group agree with these four demands, we invite you to join us in Richmond on Saturday, January 8, at Asbury United Methodist Church, 324 N. 29th St. That's on the corner of 29th and East Marshall streets in Church Hill, one block north of East Broad Street. The gathering will start at 10 a.m. and finish up by 9 p.m.

We will be building on the demands of July 3 by hosting a day of movement-building and idea-sharing while also forming a structure for a
statewide network of anti-war activists.

Enclosed is a proposed schedule for the Jan. 8 gathering. We are asking every group that attends to please be prepared to make a five-minute presentation about your group so we can all learn about each others' work.

We also are seeking proposals on principles of unity and structure for a statewide network. Included in this mailing is a proposal with our own thoughts on principals of unity.

We also plan to use this day to discuss plans for the January 20 counter-inaugural demonstrations in Washington, D.C.

If you can join us on Jan. 8 - or if you can't make it but want to stay in touch, please get back to us by e-mailing us at richmond-J20 (at) riseup.net, or writing in care of the Flying Brick Library, PO Box 5021, Richmond, VA 23220.

We look forward to hearing from you soon.

In solidarity,

Christie Burwell -- for Richmond Reproductive Freedom Project

Ana Edwards & Phil Wilayto -- for Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality

Jen Lawhorne -- for Richmond IndyMedia

Shawn O'Hern -- for Richmond Food Not Bombs

Charlie Schmidt -- for Richmond Coalition for a Living Wage

Zakia Shabazz -- for United Parents Against Lead National Inc.

Yvonne Sorovacu -- for Flying Brick Library





Draft proposal for a Virginia anti-war conference

Time, Date, Place: 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. - Saturday, Jan. 8, 2004 - Asbury United
Methodist Church, Richmond

Goal: To solidify a statewide network around a set of anti-war principles, with a decision-making structure and plan for action.

Unity Demands (from the statewide July 3 demonstration):

1 - Real sovereignty for Iraq - bring the troops home now!
2 - End the occupations of Iraq, Haiti, Afghanistan & Palestine!
3 - Money for jobs & human needs, not war!
4 - No to racism, sexism & the oppression of lesbians, gays, bisexual & transgendered people!

Proposed Schedule:

10 a.m. - registration (sign up with contact information, get day's schedule, donation to cover cost of food)
10:30 a.m. - noon - first plenary meeting with local reports and motivating talks

Co-Chairs: Ana Edwards, Defenders, or Jen Lawhorne, Richmond Indymedia, and someonefrom an area other than Richmond - Welcoming remarks &
explanation of goals of conference


Proposed speakers (5 minutes each):
* speakers from local groups - who they are, what kind of work they do, etc.
* Connie Moss - Military Families Speak Out - why the war is not in our interest
* Shawn O'Hern - Richmond Food Not Bombs - the need to oppose all U.S. wars, sanctions, blockades
* Tiamba Wilkerson - Defenders - the need to support the right of oppressed nations to self-determination, both at home and abroad
* Saba Abed - Rashid Cultural Center - why Palestine must be a central issue for the anti-war movement
* representative of Richmond Queer Space - why issues of gender oppression must bepart of the anti-war movement
* Tyla Matteson - Richmond Peace Education Center board member, Sierra Club, Mattopani work, went to Palestine with Global Exchange - tying in the environmental and anti-war movements
* representative of UE Local 160 - why the war is not in the interest of working people in the U.S.

noon - 1 p.m. - lunch at Asbury

Second plenary meeting - Co-Chairs: Either Ana Edwards, Defenders, or Jen Lawhorne, Richmond Indymedia (whichever one did not co-chair the morning session) - and someone from an area other than Richmond

1 - 2:30 p.m. - discussion on the Green Sheet (Principles of Unity)

15-minute break

2:45 - 4:30 p.m. - discussion on structure

15-minute break

4:45. - 5:45 p.m. - discussion on Jan. 20, statewide tours

5:45 - 6:45 p.m. - break out into groups to discuss other action proposals
or topics

6:45 - 7:30 p.m. - dinner at Asbury

7:30 - 8 p.m. - plenary - wrapping up & announcements of upcoming activities

8 - 9 p.m. - social

NOTE: Discussions on principles of unity, structure & actions should be
ongoing now through the conference.
 
 


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