Announcement from the Gabriela Network:
MARCH 8TH AGAINST THE WAR
Saturday, March 8, 2008, 4-6pm
Washington Square Park, NYC
W. 4th St., 1 block east of 6th Ave. By subway: A/C/E/F/V/B/D to W. 4th St; or R to 8th St.; or 1/9 to Christopher St.; or 6 to Astor Place. Look for women in red, by the fountain or the southeast side of the park.
For more info: nynj @ gabnet.org or secgen @ gabnet.org
WEAR RED. BRING NOISE MAKERS, A SONG, POEM… WOMEN SPEAK OUT AGAINST THE WAR!
Organized by GABNet and the Mariposa Alliance
Actions also in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego. If you’re not in any of these cities but would like to participate in the call for March 8th Against the War, please email chair @ gabnet.org for the west coast, secgen @ gabnet.org for east coast and midwest. Visit: http://outtathekitchentaketothestreets.blogspot.com/ for suggestions on actions and to publicize your activity.
1913 was a watershed year for the commemoration of International Women’s Day. This year, the uprising of the women of Petrograd occurred, precipitating the downfall of Czarist Russia; in the United States, Ida Wells-Barnett, an African-American journalist, broke segregation laws by marching with her white sisters in Washington DC for women’s right to vote; and all over Europe, women held peace rallies denouncing the looming World War I.
We need to return our Day and our Month to their rightful and correct significance in both national and international arenas. Though March was meant to be a celebration of women’s achievements, International Women’s Day and International Women’s Month were also meant to be the time when the women’s voice regarding national and international events was meant to be the loudest. State violence has been foremost in women’s minds, as this has been the most destructive of life and the conditions for the well-being, not only of womankind, but of the entire human species.
GABRIELA Network, in cooperation with the initiating committee of the Mariposa Alliance, is inviting you and your organization to join us in organizing and calling upon all women to declare 2008 March 8th Against the WarCampaign.
We are establishing coordinating committees in various cities, to ensure that activities around March 8th carry this declaration of our continuing opposition to war, invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq, and the use of war, invasion and occupation as a method of resolving differences and as a means of intervening in the internal affairs of other countries.
We hope that by ensuring that our 2008 IWD and IWM activities – whether these be marches, forums, gatherings – are centered around women’s opposition against the war, we can restore International Women’s Day to its proper historical context.
If you and/or your organization are interested in working on this, please contact: Dorotea Mendoza, Secretary General, GABNet, secgen @ gabnet.org.
MARCH 8TH AGAINST THE WAR!
International Women’s Day arose from the upsurge of women’s activism on both national and international politics. 1913 was a watershed for the women’s movement. On March 8th, women led peace rallies in Europe, in protest against the looming threat of a world war. In Russia, the women went on strike, calling for “peace and bread,” thereby starting the cresting of a revolutionary wave until the 1917 October revolution. In the US, Ida Wells-Barnett, an African-American journalist, broke segregation laws by marching with her white colleagues, calling for the women’s right to vote. Indeed, the 20th century was replete with instances of women challenging national and international politics, culminating in rallies, pickets, demonstrations on March 8th.
Since then March 8th has been co-opted and turned into a so-called commemoration of women’s achievements, as though there were no more need for further achievements. It is time to return March 8th to its historic role as the day women challenge government decisions and policies inimical to peace, justice and the preservation of the human species. It is time for March 8th to be known as the day when women unite and march against state policies dangerous to the health and safety of the nation.
In the year 2008, we issue the call to all women to transform March 8th into a historic protest against the war in Iraq. Despite the majority opprobrium against this war, it continues, sucking up resources needed for education, health and social services. Despite majority opposition to the war, it continues, funneling hundreds of billions of taxpayers’ money into the maws of war-profiteers and war-racketeers. Despite majority disgust with the war, it continues, killing one US youth after another, nearly 4,000 now; killing nearly 2 million Iraqis; the endless carnage justified by hollow assertions of “victory” and “it’s working.”
The March 8th Against the War Committee call on all women to use this day of international activism to protest the war, call for its end, and for US troops to return to US soil. The March 8th Against the War Committee invokes the memory of Clara Zetkin and Alexandra Kollontai, of the European women and the Russian women who opposed imperialist wars. May their likes walk with us again, in the 21st century!