New Jersey Coalition Against War on Iraq

 

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FULL TEXT OF RESOLUTION PRESENTED TO THE CITY COUNCIL JERSEY CITY, NEW JERSEY
SPONSOR: Councilwoman Mary Donnelly

RESOLUTION OPPOSING THE WAR IN IRAQ

WHEREAS, the citizens of the City of Jersey City, New Jersey and their local elected officials have the Constitutional right and duty to petition the national government on matters of grave concern to our city, the nation and the world community; and

WHEREAS, the residents of Jersey City have a long and proud history in defending our nation during times of war and crisis and we support our men and women in the Armed Forces, we believe that should used to protec our great nation from terrorism and those who would harm us and not be put in harms way frivolously or without just cause; and

WHEREAS, many religious leaders throughout the United States have spoken out against this war and the impac it will have on our people; and

WHEREAS, we hold high the sanctity of life and believe in the democratic principles of non-aggression and the right of nations to determine their own destiny; and

WHEREAS, we stand on the threshold of a war in the country of Iraq and the surrounding region where the lives of hundred of thousands of American and millions of Iraqi civilians including women and children will be endangered by a devastating modern war; and

WHEREAS, the people of Jersey City believe that we must exhaust every possible diplomatic and political alternative in order to prevent the first war of the twenty first century and many national security experts, including the Director of the CIA, have stated that a war with Iraq is more likely to result in the use of weapons of mass destruction than will a policy of diplomacy; and

WHEREAS, the United Nations weapons inspectors, world leaders and other experts have testified that Iraq does not pose an "imminent threat" to the United States and the national government has been unable to intelligently or convincingly articulate why war with Iraq would be in the best interest of the American people; and

WHEREAS, according to the United Nations International Children's Education Fund (UNICEF), 500,000 children have died in Iraq during the past twelve years as a result of the 1991 war in Iraq and the subsequent sanctions imposed on that country and a new war would cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians as well as military casualties on all sides; and

WHEREAS, Jersey City's 18 to 32 year old population is likely to be a primary source of recruitment for military personnel to fight this war in Iraq; and

WHEREAS, the financial costs to the nation, including Jersey City is estimated to be between 70 and 200 billion dollars which will deplete the financial reserves, harming the economy and resulting in the financial neglect to the educational, health care, housing, employment, infrastructure and social service needs of the American people; and

WHEREAS, the war in Iraq will have a devastating affect on the eco-systern of Iraq and the entire region due to the use of weapons made of "Depleted Uranium" and other modem weapons systems; and

WHEREAS, the cities of Santa Cruz, California, Chicago, Illinois, Baltimore, Maryland, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Ithaca, New York, Detroit, Michigan, Union County, New Jersey and a host of other cities across the United States have adopted similar resolutions against the war in Iraq.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED BY THE MUNICIPAL COUNCIL

OF THE CITY OF JERSEY CITY, that we hereby voice our opposition to any military strikes or acts of war contemplated by the President or Congress of the United States against Iraq and that no war against Iraq be undertaken unless it is a response to a direct military attack by Iraq upon United States soil.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the City Council reaffirms the United Nation "Universal Declaration of Human Rights" and the principals of international law and calls upon the current administration and Congress to provide leadership in encouraging true peace, true justice, true democracy and respect for human life in Iraq, the Middle East, the U.S. and throughout the world.

Articles from The Jersey Journal - Thursday, January 16, 2003
Antiwar rally today at City Hall

Members of the Hudson County Coalition for Peace and Justice will hold a 1 p.m. rally today on the steps of City Hall in Jersey City in protest of the looming war against Iraq.

 "We must stand up as Americans and voice our opinions regarding what we consider an unjust war that has not been clearly articulated and justified by the president," said HCCPJ member Patricia Santoro, a professor at Saint Peter's College.

Jersey City Councilwoman Mary Donnelly, who next week will introduce an anti-war council resolution similar to ones adopted in Santa Cruz, Calif., Baltimore, Md., and Chicago, Ill., is scheduled to speak at the rally, organizers said.

- Jennifer Morrill

Antiwar group heading to Washington - Friday, January 17, 2003
By Jason Fink Journal staff writer

Local organizers, including the director of the Office of Veterans Affairs in Jersey City, will be riding to Washington, D.C., tomorrow to participate in a nationwide protest against a possible war with Iraq.

Under the banner of the NJ Coalition Against War in Iraq, a Hudson County contingent will be leaving Journal Square at 6 a.m. on two buses, said David Cline, a Vietnam veteran and antiwar activist. Cline and Veterans Affairs Director Jamie Vazquez have been among Jersey City's most vocal opponents of the current military build-up in the Persian Gulf.

"A lot of people are going to be speaking up," said Cline, who received three Purple Hearts for injuries he received in Vietnam.

In October, a similar rally drew what organizers said was 100,000 people, though many news organizations estimated the number of participants was lower. Cline predicted that about a quarter of a million people from around country will take part in tomorrow's demonstration.

Yesterday, at an antiwar rally held on the steps of City Hall, Councilwoman Mary Donnelly presented a council resolution opposing military action. The resolution will go before the nine-member council for a vote.

Kabili Tayari, the president of the Jersey City chapter of the NAACP and assistant business administrator for the city, also attended the rally.

Vazquez, who also received a purple heart in Vietnam, said the Bush administration is rushing to war without consideration for the lives of those who will be asked to fight.

"We have to make sure that if we send our young people into harm's way, it's not for political reasons," said Vazquez.

Organizers said they expect about 100 Hudson County residents will join them for the trip to Washington.

Jason Fink can be reached at

Antiwar council resolution backed -  Saturday, January 18, 2003
By Miles Doyle, Journal staff writer

The Hudson County Coalition for Peace and Justice rallied outside City Hall in Jersey City Thursday morning to show their support for a proposed City Council resolution opposing the national government'suse of military action against Iraq.  

Joined by representatives from New Jersey Peace Action, the Jersey City chapter of the NAACP and the New Jersey Coalition Against the War on Iraq, Erik-Anders Nilsson, a member of the HCCPJ an organizer of the rally, criticized the Bush administration for committing billions of dollars top "control Iraq's oil" while cutting funding for Medicaid, education and housing programs.

"They always have money for war," he said. "Meanwhile, they are slashing the pittance for children's library books."

The resolution lets the federal government know that there is growing opposition to waging a war against Iraq, said Councilwoman Mary Donnelly, who drafted the resolution.

Citing the "long and proud history" of Jersey City residents in defending the nation in times of war, the resolution asks that "no war against Iraq be undertaken unless it is a response to a direct military attack by Iraq upon United States soil."

TEXT OF COUNCILWOMAN MARY DONNELLY’S SPEECH  AT THE CITY HALL PRESS CONFERENCE
JERSEY CITY – JANUARY 16, 2003

Thank you. It is nice to be among a great group of people.

At this time I felt it necessary to sponsor a resolution against the war in Iraq, which would cost the lives of the young men and women who are being sent to war.

 The people of the United States are not sure if the war is to do away with terrorists, or to take care of the President’s friends and their oil interests. North Korea’s nuclear capabilities are far more dangerous than Iraq. But the President is not worried about Korea, because Korea is not involved in the oil business.

Currently our cities are in real financial danger –and terrorist danger. Yet the President is going to spend billions of dollars a day to send our city kids to die in a desert fighting people who can hardly feed themselves.

The President should be sending money to the cities of the United States to pay for police and firemen to protect us from terrorism and real attacks, which we have all witnessed. Eleven of the terrorists from the 9/11 were from Saudi Arabia, a country which supplies our oil and gasoline. Yet, we must protect our business interests there!

The President should be concerned about big business terrorists, who have ruined the economy and raided the savings and pension funds of the working people of this country.How can we spend a billion dollar today killing people in the desert, who may or may not be the real terrorists? Maybe he should spend a few bucks securing our cities and fighting Wall Street terrorists and robber barons there.

I am proud to sponsor this resolution. Next week, on Wednesday January 22nd, it will come up in front of the City Council, and I have their assurance that it will pass.