Thursday, March 19, 2009

Women say NO to war!

March on the Pentagon, Saturday, March 21, On the 6th Anniversary of the invasion of Iraq

From Iraq to Afganistan, Philippines to Palestine
OCCUPATION IS VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
Women say NO to war!

Get on the bus on March 21 from Jackson Heights, Queens!
6:30 AM Bus leaves Dunkin Donuts at 74 St. & Roosevelt Ave., Queens
11:30 AM Bus arrives in DC
5:00 PM Bus leaves from DC
$40 Bus tickets (limited)
Contact:
GABRIELA Network/Mariposa Alliance: gabnetnynj@gmail.com, www.gabnet.org, www.gabnetnynj.blogspot.com/
Alliance for a Just and Lasting Peace in the Philippines: ugnayan.nynj@gmail.com, www.alliancephilippines.blogspot.com

FAQs
- What’s special about March 21?
- How are our immigrant communities affected by the war on Iraq?
- How are we as women affected by the war on Iraq?
- How are other members of the Filipino American community affected by the war on Iraq?


What’s special about March 21?

March 21 marks the sixth anniversary of the current US war on Iraq. Organized by the Act Now to Stop the War and End Racism (ANSWER) Coalition, simultaneous rallies will be held in Washington DC, San Francisco, Los Angeles and other major cities across the US.

In New York City, Queens-based organizations Ugnayan ng mga Anak ng Bayan (Linking the children of the Motherland), Damayan Migrant Workers Association, and Gabriela Network / Mariposa Alliance are urging immigrant communities from the borough and in New York and New Jersey to join the March on the Pentagon in Washington DC on Saturday, March 21.

Filipino-Americans, who comprise the base constituency of these organizations, have a stake in making their voices heard, as US troops pour into the Philippines, Filipinas are subjected to military rape with impunity and the war between the Arroyo Government and the people of Mindanao escalates. We do not want our ancestral country turned into a war zone for the profit of US weapons manufacturers and Blackwater mercenaries.

Obama promised that the US occupation of Iraq will end in August 2010. So why should we still join in the anti war rally on March 21?

The continuing US led wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine and Philippines impact the current US economic meltdown. Obama has allotted $200B for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars for the next two years - that's about $100M a day at the back of the already suffering tax payers. This includes immigrants who are the first to lose jobs, homes and government services and suffer the higher cost of living.

How are our immigrant communities affected by the war on Iraq?

While the US government is allocating more money to fund the war in Iraq, the budget for social services are being slashed. The State Medical Insurance for Children was severely limited to children whose parents are "legal" or "documented" immigrants. This means that hundreds of thousands of children, born in the USA, will grow up without medical assistance.

With the pending budget cuts in New York City, tuition fees are projected to go up astronomically by next semester. This endangers the ability of young people, especially Filipino Americans, to acquire an education which would enable them to compete in the job market.

The Filipino-American community also suffers from the highest drop-out rate among Asian American communities. We Filipino Americans are practically invisible in the US society. That’s because we occupy mostly service jobs – not jobs of decision-making status.

How are we as women affected by the war on Iraq?

Women comprise the majority of the world's population. Violence against any nation impacts women exponentially. War increases violence against and trafficking of women. Women and children comprise war's collateral damage; they lose their value as human beings and become commodity who are bought and sold for the pleasure of those with power. Even women soldiers suffer from the violent machismo that is a sub-culture of militarism. American women soldiers are raped by their fellow soldiers, while military wives are often subjected to domestic violence and murder.

How are other members of the Filipino American community affected by the war on Iraq?

While the US government bails out capitalist banks and corporations, it only gives pennies to Filipino American World War II Veterans. These are former Filipino soldiers who fought during World War 2 in the Philippines under the US army. However, they are not treated equally as US veterans and are deprived of all benefits and entitlements because “their military service were not deemed active”.

Sixty-three years later, the US government would only give $15,000 lump sum for each Filipino veteran without any recognition to our US veterans. They are also being forced to agree to the the "quit claim" provision. This means that upon acceptance of the lump sum, the veterans will release future claims including lifetime pension.

As the US government continues to humiliate the Filipino veterans, they will keep funding the War on Iraq.

War Forces Migration!
Money for Workers' Rights & Compensation, Not for War and Occupation!
Violence against Nations = Violence against Women!
Solidarity with the Women of Iraq, Aghanistan, Palestine & Philippines!
War Kills the Filipino and Working Class Youth!
Money for Jobs & Education, Not for War & Occupation!
Money for the Filipino Veterans, Not for the War!

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