War Resisters to Shut Down Pentagon on Monday



September 26, 2005

Contact: Tom Good, (347) 524-5631, John Lake, (646) 299-2698


WASHINGTON - As workers arrive at the Pentagon on Monday morning, September 26, members of activist affinity groups organized through the War Resisters League will nonviolently impede their entrance, encouraging them not to participate in the war machine.

The action, which will begin at 7 a.m., will take place two days following the September 24 mass march and rally against the war in Washington, DC. It is intended to encourage Pentagon workers to join antiwar activists in shutting down the Pentagon. Organizers say the action will be separate from, but in solidarity with the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker Community, which has maintained a weekly vigil at the Pentagon for 18 years.

“We will share our stories with Pentagon employees, telling them what brought us to the conviction that the war is terrorism with a bigger budget," says WRL Affinity Group member Amy Bauer, “and challenge them to look into the faces of the victims. We will be wearing the faces of U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq and of Iraqis living and dying under war and occupation on our clothing.”

Organizers say they hope their action will encourage other peace activists to focus their attention on the Pentagon as a source of terrorism and violence rather than as a guarantor of security. They also hope to reach out to victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks who have found their grief exploited by the Bush administration's drive to war.

“We know that many of those working at the Pentagon survived the 9/11 attack that killed more than 100 employees,” says WRL member John Lake, “Some employees have friends and family who have been injured or killed in Iraq or remain in harm's way. We know how scary that is. Many of us are from New York City and remain deeply affected by the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. In the immediate aftermath, we knew that 'our grief is not a cry for war.'"

Believing war to be a crime against humanity, the War Resisters League, founded in 1923, advocates Gandhian nonviolence as the method for creating a democratic society free of war, racism, sexism, and human exploitation. www.warresisters.org

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