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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 20, 2003
2:38 PM
CONTACT:  Peace Action
Scott Lynch: 202.862.9740x3030
Kevin Martin: 202.862.9740x3007

Demonstrations for peace increase across the country and world;
Spurred by Bush's unprovoked attack on Iraq, peace movement gains momentum
 
WASHINGTON - March 20 - President Bush's unprovoked attack on Iraq has stimulated an increase in pro-peace activity throughout the U.S. and around the world. The increase in activity is a rebuke of the Bush administration's position that unilateral aggression against Iraq is the way to peace and disarmament. There are over 500 pro-peace events that are scheduled, across this country, for today and there are hundreds more scheduled for this weekend.

"We are dispelling any delusions on the part of the Bush administration or the right-wing pundits, that this well-developed, broad based peace movement is going to dry up and blow away in the face of war and their nationalistic propaganda blitz. There are Americans turning out in streets of this country in nearly ever state and country of the Union. We are united! We stand united, for peace, for America and for our troops," said Kevin Martin, Executive Director of Peace Action.

Peace Action activists across the country are organizing emergency anti-war demonstrations from Maine to Oregon. Interviews with local organizers are available through the Peace Action national office.

Although the Bush Administration acts as if the only victim of this war will be Saddam Hussein, it is a fact that war means the death of innocent people: women, men, children. Peace Action joins with its partners in the United for Peace and Justice coalition in encouraging individuals to express anti-war sentiments by wearing black and yellow armbands or lapel ribbons. The black in the armbands will symbolize mourning for the thousands of innocent Iraqi people and U.S. service men and women who will be killed in this unjust and unnecessary war. The yellow in the armband will symbolize our support for the American troops and our desire to see them return home safely.

"In a break with the basic tenets of our democracy and against the wishes of the community of nations, world religious leaders and citizens around the globe, the Bush administration has chosen to attack, without provocation, the country of Iraq. In committing our troops to fight a war of aggression, outside the rule of law, Bush has, in an act of malfeasance, put U.S. troops at risk unnecessarily. We believe the best way to support our troops is to bring them home now and pursue the alternatives to war that other nations and world leaders still believe are possible.

Our commitment to peace is redoubled in the face of the terrible violence that Bush and Blair are in the process of visiting upon the people of Iraq. To that end we will, in the best traditions of our democracy, continue to non-violently act for peace," concluded Martin.

Peace Action (the merger of Sane and The Nuclear Freeze) www.peace-action.org is the country's largest peace and disarmament organization with over 100,000 members.

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