The following is an archived copy of a message sent to a Discussion List run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.

Views expressed in this archived message are those of the author, not of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.

[Main archive index/search] [List information] [Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[casi] Fwd: Light up the Night for Peace!

Dear All,

The US Peace Team, in Baghdad, can be contacted through
Probably, other internationals, in Baghdad, can also be contacted,
similarly. Please share any contacts with the List.


Bert Gedin,
Birmingham, UK.

>From: Campaign of Conscience <>
>Reply-To: <>
>Subject: Light up the Night for Peace!
>Date: Fri, 14 Mar 2003 08:36:23 -0700
>Campaign of Conscience for the Iraqi People
>Campaign Update
>In This Issue:
>- Light up the Night for Peace!
>- New York City Passes Resolution Against War
>- Sleepwalking Through History
>- Students 'Break' for Peace
>- Living in Baghdad on the Eve of War
>Light up the Night for Peace!
>Join people worldwide this Sunday in "A Global Candlelight Vigil for
>Peace" called by Bishop Desmond Tutu and sponsored by the American
>Friends Service Committee,, and the Win Without War
>Our goal is to create a moving curtain of light that will cross the
>globe, beginning in New Zealand. Most vigils will start at 7 p.m. or
>dusk. As this is being written, there are more than 3,000 vigils
>scheduled in 100 countries, with numbers increasing by the hour.
>Please join us and help show there are TWO superpowers in the world:
>the U.S. government and WORLD PUBLIC OPINION. In the last several
>months, vast numbers of people have petitioned local leaders and the
>UN. We have rallied, passed city council resolutions against the
>war, lobbied for legislation to reverse the October vote for war,
>and engaged in nonviolent civil disobedience.
>The candlelight vigil will be a solemn witness of prayer and hope
>for world peace. We strongly encourage vigil participants to use
>signs that focus on those messages.
>At and, find out how to participate
>in a candlelight vigil, organize one, register one you are planning,
>or locate a vigil in your area.
>If you will be holding a vigil in connection with a Friends meeting,
>church, or organization, please identify it as an "AFSC/Quaker
>Vigil" and register it at our web site.
>It is important for vigils to be held in member countries of the UN
>Security Council: Angola, Bulgaria, Cameroon, China, Chile, France,
>Germany, Guinea, Mexico, Pakistan, the Russian Federation, Spain,
>the Syrian Arab Republic, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
>At, you will find resources about the conflict with
>Iraq, in addition to information about the Global Vigil for Peace.
>Most may be downloaded and used.
>Join, plan, register a vigil
>New York City Passes Resolution Against War
>On Wednesday, New York City become the 141st city in the United
>States to pass a city council resolution against a
>preemptive/unilateral war against Iraq.
>New York City, 12 March 2003
>"We of all cities must uphold the preciousness and sanctity of human
>life," said Councilman Alan Gerson, a Democrat who voted for the
>resolution and whose district includes the World Trade Center site,
>where 2,792 people were killed in the attacks.
>On February 15, the people of the world said no to war. This
>powerful opposition forced world leaders to step back from the brink
>of attack. An estimated 10 million people in 60 countries and more
>than 300 cities gathered to protest. These protests supplemented
>powerful anti-war resolutions that have now been passed in cities as
>diverse as Atlanta, Des Moines, Philadelphia, Chicago and Los
>Angeles. Almost every major church body has passed a resolution
>rejecting this war. Labor unions, student bodies, teachers’
>federations, and state governments have all registered opposition.
>Next steps for this initiative
>Sleepwalking Through History
>Support Friends Committee on National Legislation
>In the coming week, the UN Security Council is expected to vote on a
>new resolution related to Iraq's disarmament. As the international
>community works feverishly at the UN to continue weapons inspections
>and restrain the U.S. from its pursuit of war, Congress appears to
>be "sleepwalking through history."
>The United States stands on the brink of launching a war that will
>bring devastating and long-lasting consequences to the people of
>Iraq, U.S. troops, and to national and global security. Yet, our
>Congress remains shamefully quiet.  Last month, in an impassioned
>speech on the floor of the Senate, Sen. Robert Byrd (WV) chastised
>his colleagues for inaction in the face of an impending war: "We
>stand passively mute...paralyzed by our own uncertainty, seemingly
>stunned by the sheer turmoil of events. We are truly 'sleepwalking
>through history.'"
>Rather than providing the necessary checks and balances against the
>Administration's dangerous and misguided use of power, Congress
>appears to be abdicating its responsibility as the only body
>authorized to declare war under the U.S. Constitution.
>Send a letter
>Students 'Break' for Peace
>MARCH 17 – 21
>A Week of Nonviolent Direct Action and Lobbying
>On March 5, 2003, students from California to Maine participated in
>strikes, walkouts, and boycotts of class  to resist the Bush
>administration’s threatened war in Iraq. Students also called for
>the administration to shift its prioities from exporting war abroad
>to increasing domestic education funding.
>High school and college students walked out at planned times and
>converged at points either on campus or in central city-wide spots.
>Many walkouts and rallies had large turnouts. Students left school
>to demonstrate the immediate danger posed by the Bush
>administration’s unilateral, preemptive strike policy toward Iraq.
>Such a strike will lessen U.S. security, endanger Iraqi civilians,
>erode U.S. international legitimacy, and divert spending from such
>things as education. The event was called and coordinated by the
>National Youth and Student Peace Coalition (NYSPC), an association
>of 15 national student and youth organizations.
>Get involved
>Living in Baghdad on the Eve of War
>This Present Moment
>Living in Baghdad on the Eve of War
>by Ramzi Kysia
>'The present moment is the only moment available to us, and it is
>the door to all moments.' - Thich Nhat Hanh
>I am in Baghdad with the Iraq Peace Team, and we will stay here
>throughout any war. We will share the risks of the millions who live
>here, and do our best to be a voice for them to the world. Our risks
>are uncertain. Thousands here will surely die. But most Iraqis will
>survive, and so too, I hope, will I.
>A banner the government put up a few blocks from where we stay reads
>simply, “Baghdad: Where the World Comes for Peace.”
>It’s meant as propaganda, I’m sure. But without knowing it, it
>states a simple truth: that the world must be present for peace. We
>must be present in Baghdad as in America - in Kashmir or Chechnya,
>the Great Lakes, Palestine and Colombia--where there is war, and
>rumors of war, we must be present to build peace.
>We are present.
>My country may arrest me as a traitor, or kill me during saturation
>bombing, or shoot me during an invasion. The Iraqis may arrest me as
>a spy, or cause or use my death for propaganda. Civil unrest and mob
>violence may claim me. I may be maimed. I may be killed.
>I am nervous. I am scared. I am hopeful. I am joyous, and I joyously
>delight in the wonder that is my life.
>I love being alive. I love the splendor of our world, the beauty of
>our bodies, and the miracle of our minds. I bless the world for
>making me, and I bless the world for taking me. I feed myself on the
>fellowship we inspirit, in standing one with another in this, this
>present moment, each moment unfolding to its own best time.
>Different things move different members of our team, but all of us
>are here out of deep concern for the suffering of our brothers and
>sisters in Iraq. 20 years of almost constant war, and 12 years of
>brutal sanctions, have killed hundreds of thousands of innocents in
>We are here, today, because most of the world refused to be present,
>then. What more right do I as an American have to leave then all the
>people I’ve come to love in Iraq? An accident of birth that gives me
>a free pass throughout the world?
>All of us are here out of a deep commitment to nonviolence. Peace is
>not an abstract value that we should just quietly express a hope
>for. It takes work. It takes courage. It takes joy.
>Peace takes risks.
>War is catastrophe. It is terrorism on a truly, massive scale. It is
>the physical, political and spiritual devastation of entire peoples.
>War is the imposition of such massive, deadly violence so as to
>force the political solutions of one nation upon another. War is the
>antithesis of democracy and freedom. War is the most bloody,
>undemocratic, and violently repressive of all human institutions.
>War is catastrophe. Why choose catastrophe?
>Even the threat of war is devastating. On March 11th, when we
>visited a maternity hospital run by the Dominican sisters here in
>Baghdad, we found that eight, new mothers that day had demanded to
>have their babies by Caesarean section - they didn’t want to give
>birth during the war. Six others spontaneously aborted the same day.
>Is this spirit of liberation?
>Don’t ask me where I find the courage to be present in Iraq on the
>eve of war. 5 million people call Baghdad home. 24 million human
>beings live in Iraq. Instead, ask the politicians - on every side -
>where they find the nerve to put so many human beings at such
>terrible risk.
>We’re here for these people, as we’re here for the American people.
>The violence George Bush starts in Iraq will not stop in Iraq. The
>senseless brutality of this war signals future crimes of still
>greater inhumanity. If we risk nothing to prevent this, it will
>happen. If we would have peace, we must work as hard, and risk as
>much, as the warmakers do for destruction.
>Pacifism isn’t passive. It’s a radical challenge to all aspects of
>worldly power. Nonviolence can prevent catastrophe. Nonviolence
>multiplies opportunities a thousand-fold, until seemingly
>insignificant events converge to tumble the tyranny of fears that
>violence plants within our hearts. Where violence denies freedom,
>destroys community, restricts choices - we must be present:
>cultivating our love, our active love, for our entire family of
>We are daily visiting with families here in Iraq. We are daily
>visiting hospitals here in Iraq, and doing arts and crafts with the
>children. We are visiting elementary schools, and high schools. We
>are fostering community. We are furthering connections. We are
>creating space for peace.
>We are not “human shields.” We are not here simply in opposition to
>war. We are a dynamic, living presence - our own, small affirmation
>of the joy of being alive. Slowly stumbling, joyous and triumphant,
>full of all the doubts and failings all people hold in common - our
>presence here is a thundering, gentle call, to Americans as to
>Iraqis, of the affirmation of life.
>We must not concede war to the killers. War is not liberation. It is
>not peace. War is devastation and death.
>Thuraya, a brilliant, young girl whom I’ve come to love, recently
>wrote in her diary:
>“We don’t know what is going to happen. We might die, and maybe we
>are living our last days in life. I hope that everyone who reads my
>diary remember me and know that there was an Iraqi girl who had many
>dreams in her life...”
>Dream with us of a world where we do not let violence rule our
>lives. Work with us for a world where violence does not rule our
>lives. Peace is not an abstract concept. We are a concrete, tangible
>reality. We the peoples of our common world, through the
>relationships we build with each other, and the risks we take for
>one another - we are peace.
>Our team here doesn’t know what is going to happen any more than
>does Thuraya. We too may die. But in her name, in this moment, at
>the intersection of all our lives, we send you this simple message:
>We are peace, and we are present.
>Ramzi Kysia is a Arab American peace activist and
>writer. He is currently in Iraq with the Voices in the Wilderness’
>( Iraq Peace Team (, a project to
>keep international peaceworkers to Iraq prior to, during, and after
>any future U.S. attack, in order to be a voice for the Iraqi people.
>The Iraq Peace Team can be reached through
>To support the Iraq Peace Team
>Campaign Updates are edited by Peter Lems and Melissa Elliott
>AFSC Iraq Peace Building Program
>1501 Cherry Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102
>phone: 215-241-7170; fax: 215-241-7177
>  Join the Campaign of Conscience on the web.
>Update your profile here:
>Unsubscribe here:
>Delivered by Topica Email Publisher,

Stay in touch with absent friends - get MSN Messenger

Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
To unsubscribe, visit
To contact the list manager, email
All postings are archived on CASI's website:

[Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]