Only a victory to Iraq can defeat the US imperialist invasion and occupation. Industrial strike action can make this happen

The US AFL-CIO (main labour organization) recently adopted the call to ‘Bring the troops home now’. This is an important step for the official labor movement caused by pressure from rank and file antiwar groups like Million Worker March Movement. But it falls far short of what is needed.

First, it does not mean that Iraq will be liberated as the US can bring the troops home and leave a puppet regime in place.
Second, it does not raise the need to take action against the US war machine or the torture camps like Guantanamo!
Third, it makes no mention of the occupation of Afghanistan and the US military bases being used around the world in the ‘War on Terror’.
Fourth, it does not attack the fundamental capitalist economic cause of the drive to war by the US imperialist system in crisis.

The only way to free Iraq and stop the US drive to war is to build for a general strike to smash the US war machine!


Camp Casey shows the way! Pickets everywhere! Picket the US bases! Build the mutiny in the US forces! Strike action in the military industrial complex! Strike action in the workplaces and schools! Call for a strike by the rank and file of the military against the war in Iraq. Paralyze the US military machine at home!


The US Troops Out Now Coalition and other anti-war groups in the labor movement are calling for a nationwide strike against Poverty, Racism and War on December 1.
No school, No shopping, No work!

This strike is endorsed by the MWMM, the Black Caucus of the Teamsters and other union movements. It is good that it calls on workers and students to take strike action. But it needs to go further and raise the demand for the rank and file of the Military to go on strike.
Strike in the US military and war industry!
Form rank and file committees to break with the military command of the army of Bush, Halliburton and US imperialism!


Missing is any call for US labor to support the Iraqi resistance. Yet the US constitution has the provision for the right of citizens to be armed to resist tyranny.

The right of Iraqis to militarily defend themselves and defeat the US occupation is a basic right that must be acknowledged by the anti-war movement. US workers have no right to impose any conditions on how the Iraqis resist the occupation. Their duty is to smash the war machine at home!

At the same time we do not condone attacks on Iraqi workers by any element of the resistance. Only an organized working class can lead the resistance to liberate Iraq.
Victory to the Iraqi resistance fighters!
Only the working class can win the liberation of Iraq!


The nationwide strike links the war in Iraq with the destruction of New Orleans and calls for solidarity with the Katrina survivors. It demands:
The people of New Orleans and the Gulf must Control the Rebuilding, not Bush’s rich friends!
We demand an independent investigation!
A Job at a living wage, healthcare, housing and education not war and occupation!”

Meanwhile the Community Labor United has founded the Peoples Hurricane Relief Fund and Oversight Commission to ‘oversee’ FEMA and ensure that the people get the benefit of relief funds.

While these are important demands they don’t go far enough. Workers control of rebuilding and the demand for billions of dollars to be redirected from war to meet social needs do not seriously challenge the capitalist system. They involve a redistribution of wealth from rich to poor. But they do not raise the need for workers to take power and socialize private corporations.
  • Expropriate the Oil Monopolies!
  • Expropriate Halliburton and Bechtel and Co!
  • Build workers councils and workers defence committees!


Chavez and Castro have offered medical aid, food aid and cheap oil to the victims of the capitalist disaster in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.

US workers must form emergency committees, and self-defence committees to distribute this aid and oil to workers in need, independently of Bush and his capitalist cronies!

Chavez has said that if the US attacks Venezuela he will stop supplying oil. But Bush attacks Iraq every day using Venezuelan oil!

Confronting the US imperialist War of Terror we are all Iraqis!

US and Venezuelan workers must unite to stop Chavez’ sale of oil to the US that is used in the war machine that kills thousands of Iraqis!


NZ workers must organize to take industrial action against NZ military involvement in the occupation of Afghanistan! 

NZ workers take action against NZ collaboration with the US War of Terror and its military intelligence network! 

NZ workers take action against all the banks and corporations that serve the US military industrial machine or profit from the war of terror! 


Iraq Document :
Defeat the Anglo-American Occupation!

We reprint here a call to the Iraqi people and all its patriotic forces for the formation of the Iraqi National Front for Liberation and Democratic reconstruction (INFLD). Our position is that revolutionaries must participate in this anti-imperialist front to take the lead from the national bourgeoisie and fight to turn the national revolution into a socialist revolution.

The armed and political struggle of our people is intensifying against the occupiers’ vile schemes, including their attempts to “Iraqinize” the occupation through divisive political structures based on ethnic and sectarian quotas that aim to shatter the unity of our people and homeland.

The widening struggle calls for the formation of a broad National Front that is capable of leading the country to freedom and democratic reconstruction. It is crucial at this stage to focus on ensuring the basic requirements for building this front, rather than its detailed programs, tactics and organization. Hence the call is all inclusive.

The requirements for establishing the National Front for Liberation and Democratic reconstruction, starting with addressing the obstacles in its way, were discussed at a seminar of Iraqi intellectuals and politicians, some of whom representing the main patriotic movements in Iraq, and others as independent Iraqi activists. [1]

Following a frank, energetic and constructive debate the participants agreed that:

“We aspire to a front that is inclusive of all the patriotic, Islamic and Leftist movements, groups, and individuals in their full spectrum; a front that covers the whole of Iraq’s territory: north, centre and south; a front that represents all the strata and components of our people: Arabs, Kurds, Turkmen, and minorities, and aims to guarantee their legitimate aspirations.

In spite of the perceived differences in doctrines and practices; the patriotic forces share wide common grounds, and are increasingly coordinating their work. It is through the development of such coordination that we hope to eventually attain the creation of the desired National Front for Liberation and Democratic reconstruction.

A foremost prerequisite for the formation of the front is resolving antagonisms between the patriotic forces through a bold process of criticism and self-criticism with respect to the mistakes of the past. We need to take steps that lead to developing the national struggle along democratic principles. This self criticism, combined with reevaluation of past practices, should be exercised by all political factions that played a central role in the political sphere in Iraq since the revolution of July 14, 1958, through July 17, 1968 and up to the present time.

Such a process will form the basis for reconciliation amongst all patriotic forces, allowing them to turn a new leaf based on the spirit of forgiveness and common struggle. That in itself is the main defense against international and regional intrigues to fragment our country and people.

A serious and comprehensive review of the past and the desire for rectification will not be achieved by a mere political deal, neither will it be accomplished by a declaration of yet another document of 'promises and undertakings'. The required challenging process is an intellectual, political as well as a moral struggle that involves both individuals and groups. It is long term struggle, but should, nonetheless, be immediately initiated.

We strive for the unity of our people's patriotic factions, both in content and methods of struggle. Some patriotic forces have resorted to armed struggle, and some others to non-violent and public resistance methods but do, nonetheless, support the armed resistance against the occupation.

Therefore, it should be acknowledged that the two strands of the struggle, the armed and the political, do complement and strengthen each other, and do need each other. An atmosphere of mutual understanding, and coordination between both types of resistance should prevail. At a later stage, we should aim for a single front for liberation, construction and democratization, encompassing all.

We also believe that the unity of our people mandates extending the dialogue to include factions and personalities whose positions have not yet solidified behind the resistance. We need to bring them closer to actively oppose the occupation and to support the armed resistance.

The rallying call for unity requires daily and continuous effort by leaders of political parties, religious movements and by the intellectuals to guide and educate the rank and file. Such guidance is a means of foiling the attempts to fragment and divide our country. The conditions for the establishment of the National Front are maturing. We should, therefore, enhance this trend through further dialogues, joint activities and coordination among the active participants.

Agreement was reached by all participants who attended this meeting, whether representing their respective parties or independents, to form a Dialogue Committee tasked with accelerating the formulation requirements of the broad National Front.

We hail the patriotic forces that are leading the valiant armed resistance to the occupation, and are hoisting the banner of Iraq high and its soul intact. We hail, too, the other patriotic forces that daily confront one of the most brutal occupiers known in history and are sparing no blood or sacrifice in this historic confrontation.”

Salute to the glorious martyrs of Iraq.

Freedom to Iraqi political detainees and prisoners.

Defeat the Anglo-American occupation.

Victory to our fighting people.

Beirut 29.7.2005

[1] This seminar was convened at the conclusion of ‘The Future of Iraq' symposium that was held in Beirut, Lebanon during July 25-28. 2005. The symposium was arranged and hosted by the Center of Arab Unity Studies (CAUS), whose participants paid for their travel expenses. (The symposium discussed and finalized documents that may aid the Iraqi government after liberation, including the Constitution, Election laws, Reconstruction, Rebuilding of the Iraqi Army, Oil policy and the Kurdish Autonomy. The list of attendance and the documents are available on the CAUS website in Arabic) 

From Class Struggle 63 Sept/Oct 2005

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