Hope of Iraqi citizens
Iraq Freedom Congress (IFC) Secretary Samir Adil visited Japan to convey the breath of the Iraqi Civil Resistance front moving onward. His report made it clearer than ever that solidarity with this struggle aimed at ending the US-led occupation of Iraq and establishing a secular government is where the perspective exists for the antiwar movement.
"In Japan, victims of the railway accident are honored with flowers and prayers. In Iraq, about the same number of people are being killed each day, without being taken any care of. It's just the numbers of the dead that are reported. Are the Iraqis not worth treating as human beings?" Samir depicted the process under way in Iraq as "catastrophe of humanity."
The IFC has been formed in order to put an end to this catastrophe. Contrary to the "Transitional Government" whose foundation is comprised of ethnic and religious segmentations, the IFC enhances the bonds of Iraqi society based on their common identity as humans. Under the slogans, "No to occupation! No to terrorism! No to ethnic conflict and racism! Yes to freedom in Iraq!", the IFC shows the path to an exodus from catastrophe.
Resorting to the power of democracy
The presence of the IFC has already rooted deeply in Iraqi society and politics. It was proven in the victory of the struggle of Basra.
As has already been reported, the protest against the killing of a Basra University student by a militia belonging to the al-Sadr group has gained support in and outside the country and eventually pressed the Islamist faction to release an apology. On top of that, Samir has brought us additional information that shines a new light on the struggle.
One of the facts conveyed is that hard-line voices existed initially among the students infuriated by the al-Sadr group's ferocious act, insisting on launching armed counterattacks. However, student activists from the Iraqi Civil Resistance front persuaded them not to resort to violence, instead leading them to organize themselves into unarmed, non-violent protest actions. This was how they could wage an open-ended strike and appeal to citizens at home and abroad for support. As Samir observes, "the strong point is that those activists promoted the case from a campus issue to one involving the entire society."
Another notable accomplishment is their success in having the al-Sadr group compensate, besides issuing an apology, for mental and material damage incurred by students, and the on-campus committees of the Islamist elements be eliminated. This achievement brings us one step closer to one of the IFC's immediate goals as stated in its Manifesto, "Dissolve and disarm all armed and paramilitary groups linked to Islamic forces."
Students and citizens of Basra are now approaching their goal of eliminating all space for armed Islamists from the campus through their unarmed, non-violent activities. They have established a robust case proving it is not military means but political and social struggles of awakened citizens that actually block terrorism.
Expand and spread solidarity committees
One of the IFC's aims is to restore civil life to Iraq. To that end, on May Day 2005, they developed a wide variety of events as part of their activities. The ICF held a marathon in Sulaymaniyah, and Kurdish dances in Kirkuk, among other activities. "It is wrong for the mass media to depict Iraq as a reactionary Islamic society. We do have a perspective for the reconstruction of a civil society. On May Day, we meant to show that to all," Samir reported.
The Iraqi Civil Resistance is a struggle to get back decent life that humans deserve as well as to recover their undisputed rights, which have been taken away under the occupation. As such, Samir, calling to all, says, "I request everybody who believes in humanity to join the IFC."
As solidarity activities in support of the Iraqi civil front renouncing the rule by force develop further, we can drive conviction more deeply and broadly among the Japanese that the Self-Defense Forces (Japanese troops) must be withdrawn from Iraq. Expand the membership of the Committee for Solidarity with Iraqi Civil Resistance. (June 6)