Trade Unions Representing 130 Million Workers Say NO to War in Iraq!

ZENROREN, n.d. [2003]


Over 200 unions and 550 union leaders from 53 countries representing 130 million workers have signed the International Labor Declaration circulated by USLAW, beginning just ten days ago.

Workers of the world have spoken with a single voice, demanding that the US abandon its militaristic threats of illegal aggression against Iraq and that a peaceful means be pursued to assure that Iraq has dismantled and abandoned all weapons proscribed by the UN resolutions. They have said in unison, Give peace a chance!

This is the first time in history that the world's labor movements have come together to speak with a single voice on an issue of urgent international concern.

On Wednesday, February 19, USLAW convened an unprecedented global telephone press conference to brief the media about the Declaration and its signatories.

Participating in that call were representatives of major labor federations and unions in the U.S., Mexico, Canada, Quebec, France, England, Tunisia, Pakistan, Brazil, Australia, and Italy. Messages were also read from ZENROREN of Japan and KCTU of South Korea

The press conference was broadcast in real time on the World Wide Web and a recording of it will be posted shortly on the USLAW Website.

International Labor Statement Opposing War Against Iraq

On the eve of a threatened war against Iraq, we, trade unionists from around the world, join with U.S. Labor Against the War (USLAW) and the U.S. unions, representing more than 4 million workers, who have opposed this war.

As trade unionists we have the responsibility to inform all working people about issues that affect their lives, jobs and families, and to be heard in the international debate on these issues.

We oppose a US led war against Iraq for many reasons.

There is no evident purpose for this war that we can support. There is no convincing link between Iraq and Al Qaeda or the attacks on Sept. 11, and neither the Bush administration nor the UN inspections have demonstrated that Iraq poses a real threat to Americans and other nations.

It is clear that military action in Iraq will actually increase the likelihood of retaliatory terrorist acts around the world against Western targets.

This action against Iraq by the U.S. military and others nations that may join them, threatens the peaceful resolution of disputes among states, jeopardizing the safety and security of the entire world.

We know that the principal victims of any military action in Iraq will be the sons and daughters of working class families who serve in the military forces and innocent Iraqi civilians who have already suffered so much.

We have no quarrel with the ordinary working class men, women and children of Iraq, or any other country.

We oppose the spending of billions of dollars to stage and execute this war when our nations need money for education, healthcare, housing, and other basic needs.

We oppose the use of this war, and the threat of war, as pretext for attacks on labor, civil, immigrant and human rights in the United States and in other nations.

We believe Bush's drive for war serves as a cover and distraction for the sinking U.S. economy, corporate corruption, and layoffs.

As representatives of the labor movement around the world, we have long had an historic role in fighting for justice. We urge our members to actively protest this war. At the onset of the 21st Century we join with the vast majority of the people of the world who seek a better life and who yearn for a peaceful resolution to this and other international disputes. US Labor Against the War


Big waves of anti-war actions having run over the globe on February 15 have revived reason and courage of mankind by putting a break on count down toward a war against Iraq. But, the Bush Administration has not abandoned yet its ambition and obsession. The danger that it will start a war remains.

We ZENROREN and its 1.4 million members urge that the Bush Administration should stop a unilateral war plan against Iraq, which inevitably would bring the world to the edge of disaster. Victims of war are always innocent children, women and a vast number of common people. International law and precedent holds that preemptive war is justified only in case there is an imminent threat by an aggressor.

We also wish to demand the Iraqi Government to implement unconditionally and in good faith the UN Security Council resolutions. It is essential to take time to continue and even strengthen the U.N. necessary inspections on weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, so that the international community could carry on the efforts within the U.N. framework to achieve a peaceful solution.

We, as a nation suffered from the atomic bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, insist that opposition to weapons of mass destruction must be across the board and not selective, and that fundamental solution should be the complete elimination of nuclear and other kind of weapons of mass destruction.

We are promoting campaign hand in hand with broader strata of the people demanding the Government of Japan to express its opposition to the U.S. military attacks on Iraq; to reject the U.S. demand for cooperation in any form in an unlawful war; to stop military buildup to support the U.S. attacks on Iraq and to withdraw immediately the Self Defense Forces deployed overseas.

We join with the world's people in the struggle for peace, justice and national sovereignty.