STOP THE WAR COALITION NEWSLETTER
No 2006/7: March 30
Telephone 020 7278 6694
5TH ANNUAL STOP THE WAR CONFERENCE
The past year has been very eventful for Stop the War Coalition. We have
held two national demonstrations — making 14 in total — the latest on 18
March being the largest since 2003, the year of the Iraq invasion. Our
international peace conference in December 2005 was hugely successful,
attracting over 1500 delegates, including for the first time delegates from
Iraq. We have developed further links with the global anti-war movement,
particularly in the United States, and we have now established significant
links with prominent opposition figures in Iraq, such as Sheik Zagani from
the Al-Sadr movement.
An important development has been the increasing number of military families
who have contacted us, following the loss of loved ones in Iraq, because
they want to be active in opposing a war which has brought them such
suffering. We have been able to put them in contact with Military Families
Against the War, an organisation whose dignity and resolve to get justice
for their relatives is an inspiration to all of us in the anti-war movement.
We also have an increasing number of families of serving soldiers in Iraq
contacting us because they too want to be actively involved in the campaign
to end the occupation and bring the troops home before any more soldiers are
killed or injured for a war based on lies.
The warmongers are under ever increasing pressure, with close to two thirds
of Americans now saying they oppose the war, polls in Britain showing
consistently high levels for withdrawing British troops and over 70 per cent
of US soldiers in Iraq saying they think they should leave the country.
The endless series of revelations about torture, prisoner abuse, illegal
kidnapping and the random killing of Iraqi civilians has derailed all
attempts by Bush and Blair to present themselves as the upholders of
“freedom” and “democracy”.
The more Bush and Blair suffer politically for their war crimes and the
catastrophes they have produced in Iraq and Afghanistan, the greater the
likelihood that they will try and deflect attention by attacking Iran,
making it as important as ever that the anti-war movement not only continues
to mobilise for an immediate end to the occupation in Iraq but builds the
widest opposition to any future war plans.
This is the context in which Stop the War Coalition’s fifth annual
conference will be held on Saturday 10 June at Friends House, Euston Road,
London. The conference is open to delegates from our local and affiliated
groups and to individual Stop the War members (see below). As before, the
conference will debate resolutions and elect Stop the War’s national
Steering Committee, but in addition we will be holding a number of
workshops, lead by keynote speakers and covering a wide range of topics,
– Iraq Today: Towards Democracy of Civil War?
– Why Iran is Under Threat
– Where Now for Palestine?
– Latin America ? the Next Target?
– The Forgotten Wars in Africa
– Civil Liberties and Guantanamo
– Islamophobia and the Anti-War Movement
– Military Families Against the War
BASIS OF DELEGATIONS
All of Stop the War’s local and affiliated groups will be circulated shortly
with re-affiliation details and the basis for delegations to the conference.
Only groups which have re-affiliated will be able to send delegates. All
names of delegates must be registered with the national office by 2 June.
The cost for delegates is £10.
Individual Stop the War members who wish to attend the conference as
observers must register with the office not later than 2 June but are
advised to submit their names as early as possible as there will be limited
space. The cost for observers is £10.
RESOLUTIONS AND ELECTIONS
Any local or affiliated group is entitled to enter resolutions for
discussion and voting on. The Steering Committee may also submit
resolutions. Nominations for the Steering Committee elections can be made by
local and affiliated groups and names should be submitted to the national
office no later than Friday 26 May.