The Mercenary Challenge to Anti-militarism:
By Celine Joiris
Mercenaries are nothing new; people outside of national armies have been fighting and dying for pay since the days of ancient Rome. Now in the midst of another empire’s reign, “private security companies”—as they are benignly called—have been on the rise in the United States for several decades. Under the Bush administration however, they have become central to the war on and occupation of Iraq.
Up until a couple of years ago, the structure of the WRL involved twice-yearly meetings of the elected National Committee plus representatives of each local. But the meetings were primarily concerned with business and the structure didn’t meet the locals’ needs to share organizing ideas.
On December 12, the antiwar coalition United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ) issued a statement entitled “Ending the War in Iraq, Building a Broad Movement for Peace and Justice, and Our Experience with ANSWER,” in which they announced the steering committee’s decision on December 4 to end future work with the organization Act Now to Stop War and End Racism, A.N.S.W.E.R.
I am deeply troubled by the article written by Bill Weinberg in your Nov-Dec 2005 issue: “The Question of International A.N.S.W.E.R.”
As a 72-year-old who remembers the intra-left squabbles of the many “Socialist/Socialist Workers/SPF”groups of the 1950s and how those futile conflicts served mainly to fuel the right-wingers and the Joseph McCarthyite movement of the time, I think “Déjà vu! Enough already!”