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Santa Cruz Indymedia

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Santa Cruz Peace Coalition Town Hall Statement (4/7)

Thanks to the council. Thanks to Mardi Wormhoudt. Thanks to Sam Farr & Rachel Dann.

Last week President Select Bush asked congress for 75 billion dollars for the invasion of Iraq.

The vote in the Senate was unanimous. This includes both of Californiaís senators, Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer. The vote in the house was 414 to 12, with 9 not voting.

Sam Farr voted against the money. He was almost alone in this vote and it was a courageous act in pro-war Washington. We wish to thank Sam for his vote; itís not always easy to do the right thing.

We also want to remember that he did so in response to the overwhelming demand from his constituents that he oppose the war. Thank you to the people who called and wrote asking that Sam oppose the war by all means at his disposal. And whatever you're doing, keep doing it, and do more. Itís working. Now we ask that Sam go further. The war was wrong before it started and is wrong now. People-- innocent women and children, shopkeepers, taxi drivers, nurses, teachers, and elementary school students are dying now because the US continues to drop bombs on civilian neighborhoods. Imagine what it would look like if a bomb exploded on the county building or city hall or the community television station. These are considered legitimate targets by the US government. Killing civilians is not a legitimate activity.

We demand our congressman call for an immediate ceasefire.

The invasion is illegal under The UN Charter and US law. We therefore demand that US troops be withdrawn immediately from Iraq.

We reiterate our demand that impeachment proceedings be started immediately. The possibility that we may not succeed is no reason to refrain from trying. A crime is being committed by our government, and the perpetrators must be stopped immediately, and then removed from office.

The city of Santa Cruz has been a leader in resistance to this unjust and cruel war.

We call upon the city council to publicly state a call for a cease fire, and troop withdrawal.

And we call on the media to tell the truth, to print and broadcast the pictures which are seen on Al-Jazeera.

In Santa Cruz county there is a facility which manufactures and tests weapons of mass destruction. Iím speaking of Lockheed Martin located in Bonny Doon, which is a major war contractor.

The Santa Cruz Peace Coalition calls on the county government to take steps to oppose the continued operation of Lockheed Martin in Santa Cruz County. We propose declaring our county a Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone.

There will be a weapons inspection at Lockheed Martin this Friday, April 11. A press conference will be held at the County building at noon, followed by a car caravan to Bonny Doon at 12:45 for the inspection.

Volunteers are welcome. Call 459-6887

Finally, Because Santa Cruz has declared its opposition to the war, and therefore its commitment to peace, we would like to make our peace flag available to the city for display at city hall, and any other public buildings in Santa Cruz. The flags are made right here in Santa Cruz by Barrios Unidos for the Peace Coalition. We suggest that it be flown directly under the US flag, but the location is of course up to the council. The same offer is being made to our county supervisor, and to our congressional representative, to be displayed in his offices, both here in the district and in Washington.

Flags are powerful symbols, and the peace flag expresses our communityís commitment to peace.

As Gandhi said ďPeace is not the goal, peace is the way.Ē

A new world is possible. Let us work together to make it real.

Thank you.

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