FEBRUARY 27, 2003
Campus Antiwar Network (CAN)
Roberts: (773) 227-7873
Minou Arjomand: (631) 838-1373
Students Form National Antiwar Organization
- February 27 - More than 350 student delegates and supporters
from 100 different campus antiwar and peace groups gathered at
Loyola University in Chicago to hold the first national conference
of the Campus Antiwar Network (CAN) on February 21-23.
felt like history in the making as students collaborated in forging
a democratic, grassroots, student-led network dedicated to opposing
the impending war on Iraq.
opposition to war on Iraq-whether sanctioned by the United Nations
or not-the students from elite universities, community colleges
and high schools across the country pledged to ignite a firestorm
of non violent protest and opposition to U.S. war preparations
in the coming weeks.
laid for a nationwide day of campus protest and-on some campuses-student
strikes on March 5, student walk-outs and mass demonstrations
if war begins, and a national mobilization of students and all
others opposed to war on April 5.
the idea that our peers will be sent to kill and die for an unjust
and immoral war on the people of Iraq. We are the real future
of this country and the future of empire and unending war that
Bush envisions is not what we want," said Chris Roche, a high
school senior from Chicago.
While the bulk
of the weekend was dedicated to making, discussing and voting
on proposals, organizers also wedged in a great opening session
with Norman Solomon, media critic and author of the new book "Target
the News Media Didn't Tell You;" Tomomi Nakamura, a student from
Kokugakuin University in Tokyo and a leader of the Japanese student
antiwar movement; Jacob Park of the Center for Economic and Social
Rights, and Charlie Jenks and Sunny Miller of the Traprock Peace
also 11 workshops taking up everything from "The impact of Bush's
war on the Middle East" with Middle East expert Rashid Khalidi
to "Media strategies for the antiwar movement," "Israel and Palestine,"
"An Introduction to Non-Violent Civil Disobedience" and "After
Iraq, Where is Bush headed next?"
"I think everyone
was very encouraged by our accomplishments this weekend," said
Kathleen Brown, a delegate from the University of Vermont, who
was elected to CAN's national coordinating committee along with
11 other students. "People wanted to work through things constructively
and get to the basics of organizing actions. Last year in building
the movement against U.S. war in Afghanistan, the movement was
much more embattled. But now there's a great upswing coming out
of the huge national demonstrations in San Francisco, New York
City and around the world."
a unique structure, ensuring that it is student owned and operated.
1) CAN will remain independent and is not affiliated with any
other organization though it pledges to work with all forces in
the antiwar movement : 2) It is democratic so that each member
campus can elect delegates through their local anti-war student
coalitions and each affiliated campus group has an equal voice
within CAN: and 3) CAN accepts affiliation from every campus or
school antiwar organization and respects the right of its member
committees to organize independent antiwar actions locally.
four points of unity: No war on Iraq, whether backed by the U.S.
or the United Nations (UN); End the UN sanctions which have killed
more than 1 million Iraqis; Oppose the attacks on civil liberties
and racist scapegoating at home; Money for jobs, education, and
CAN also decided
to call for an April 5 national mobilization in a few major cities
following on the heels of the student-labor week of action already
being organized from March 31 to April 4.
CAN hopes that
this event will mark a major contribution to the national antiwar
movement by forging collaboration between existing national antiwar
formations such as United for Peace and Justice, International
ANSWER, Not in Our Name, and U.S. Labor Against War and all other
antiwar and peace organizations.
CAN is launching
a website at which students from around the country can post their
antiwar actions and connect with other students from around the
country, projected to launch later this week. Plans for a newsletter,
regional antiwar conferences, international student networking
and teleconference meetings with students in Baghdad are also
the CAN conference and a history of CAN actions can be found at
|Common Dreams NewsCenter is a non-profit news service
providing breaking news and views for the Progressive Community.
press release posted here has been provided to Common Dreams NewsWire by
one of the many progressive organizations who make up America's Progressive Community.
you wish to comment on this press release or would like more information,
please contact the organization directly.
*all times Eastern US (GMT-5:00)
Read our Guidelines
for Submitting News Releases
1997-2003 Common Dreams.