Since the September 11, 2001 attack on New York, leaders of the US military-industrial complex have put the Empire’s war machine into high gear, attacking, under the guise of an endless “war on terror” and “responsibility to protect,” one country after another and bringing death and destruction to many countries of the world, especially to those in the Middle East.
Now, thanks to the Trump administration and his lunatic National Security Advisor, John Bolton, and his warmongering Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, US imperialism’s war machine has been put in overdrive. The never-ending wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria are now being supplemented by simultaneous threats of war and efforts to force a regime change against several countries; expanding the US economic war through imposition of illegal, anti-human sanctions against Syria, Iran and Venezuela, which hasalready resulted in the death of 40 thousand people and threats against the lives of an additional 300,000 people in Venezuela alone; withdrawing from missile and nuclear treaties with Russia and Iran, creating a humanitarian catastrophe in Yemen; dispatching more U.S. war ships and troops to the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf; expanding the reach of the US global war machine, NATO, into Latin America; starting an economic war with China; and increasing tensions with Russia. And on top of all this is a trillion-dollar military and war budget to fund the Empire’s “full spectrum dominance” project for the whole world, about which all politicians and presidential candidates, with the exception of one or two, are absolutely silent.
All these point to the fact that the Empire is pushing the world toward a very dangerous global military, economic, environmental and humanitarian catastrophe, which demands extraordinary steps on the part of the US peace movement if such a disaster is to be prevented.
The key question before all of us, now, is whether we are prepared to confront this historic responsibility. Unfortunately, despite all our valiant efforts in the past, we have not been able to stop this destructive war machine. And there is one key factor that has been responsible for it: Our movement has so far been too fragmented to be able to meet this challenge effectively. We have been fighting against various manifestations of the Empire’s destructive war efforts on a case by case basis — one day Palestine, another day Iraq, the next day Libya, the next day Syria, and now Venezuela and Iran — each perceived as aseparate struggle to be carried out by a separate group of us in the peace movement. We have so far failed to address the very warmongering nature of the Empire itself as a unified global threat against the whole of humanity.
The historic task before us requires that we not only understand our potential and historic responsibility but that we commit to struggle against all of the relatively easy reasons for our community to divide ourselves and embrace the delusionary framework of the sectarians that believe they can go at it alone.
Over the last few years, the peace movement has shown significant progress, slowly re-building our capacity and reawakening our forces. We have much to be proud of. We have demonstrated the power of unity and have avoided the ideological and personality driven tripwires that could have undermined our progress.
The Campaign to Divest from the Military, the global campaigns against nuclear weapons and for the environment, the creation of No Bases Coalition and the Global Campaign Against US/NATO Bases, the Peace Congress, the No Trump Parade, our peace delegations to Syria, Iran and Venezuela, the March 16th mobilization for Venezuela, the March 30th No to NATO mobilization, and the magnificent struggle at the Venezuela embassy to protect the integrity of international law and the will of the people of Venezuela, have been our response to the unity of the rulers and their commitment to death and destruction.
But let us continue to build on this unity and concretize our coordination. Coming out of last years’ Peace Congress was the call for an organizing structure that would serve as a structure of communication and potential coordination among all of the peace, anti-war and anti-imperialist structures. The U.S. Peace Council is calling on all of our allies in the movement to reconstitute that structure and make it a permanent one.
Overcoming the globally unified war machine of the Empire requires a nationally unified peace movement in the United States and a globally unified peace movement on the world scale. Let us take the necessary steps to build such a unified movement before it is too late.
June 1, 2019