Human Rights Day rally: “U.S. government can never be a champion of human rights”
Minneapolis, MN – About 75 people rallied here Dec. 8, the weekend before International Human Rights Day, to say no to the U.S. using human rights to justify wars and sanctions.
Jess Sundin, of the Twin Cities based Anti-War Committee told the crowd, “With war or sanctions, the U.S. is not looking to liberate the peoples of Iran and Syria, any more than it was doing this in Viet Nam and Iraq. These countries are targets because they assert their independence from the will of Washington. Just as human rights are founded on respect for human dignity and equality, the anti-war movement must found itself on respecting the dignity and equality of nations, upholding the right to self-determination.”
Sundin emphasized, “The U.S. government can never be a champion of human rights.”
Sarah Martin, of the Women Against Military Madness Middle East Committee stated, “The objective of the U.S.-NATO alliance is to ultimately replace the independent secular Syrian state with a complaint regime. Syria has fiercely supported self-determination for Palestine. It is a strong ally of Hezbollah and Iran. It does not do the bidding of Israel or the U.S. Thrusting Syria into helpless chaos is part of the preparation of an eventual war against Iran.”
Sundin and Martin are among the Twin Cities anti-war activists who were raided by the FBI and called before a Chicago grand jury investigating “material support of terrorism.” Mick Kelly, who was also raided by the FBI, denounced the federal investigation into anti-war and international solitary activities as violation of human rights and an attempt to criminalize solidarity.
The event, which included a ten-block march thought the surrounding neighborhood, was organized by the Anti-War Committee. Endorsers included the Minnesota Committee to Stop FBI Repression, Communities United Against Police Brutality, the Joe Callahan Support Committee, Minnesota Peace Action Coalition, National Lawyers Guild (MN Chapter), U of MN Students for a Democratic Society, Veterans for Peace Chapter 27 and Women Against Military Madness.