Unwelcome NATO/G8! WRL in Chicago, May 18-19

WRL is headed to Chicago! Please join us in spreading the word about the counter-summit planned for May 18-19 and the call for videos that WRL is launching as part of the popular education-based organizing of the Network for a NATO-free Future. See below for info or get in touch with the WRL national office at wrl [at] warresisters.org or 212-228-0450.

To connect with groups organizing on-the-ground in Chicago, contact our WRL-Chicago Local.

Counter-summit for Peace and Economic Justice

As thousands will converge in Chicago during the international summits of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the Group of 8 (G8) this spring, WRL and a group of organizations* committed to ending U.S. militarism and its maintenance of economic injustice globally are looking to you and to your organizing networks to help us create and shape our counter-NATO/G-8 summit conference on May 18 & 19.

We'll also be joining community organizations, anti-war groups, and social justice activists from all over the country at the May 19 march and rally organized for the first day of the NATO/G8 meetings.

Our counter-summit will provide a unique opportunity to build our movements locally, nationally, and globally, as it brings together peace and justice activists from across the U.S. and internationally to share and deepen our analyses, to develop and build our campaigns, and to sharpen our vision, agendas, strategies, and skills for future organizing.

Our plenaries and workshops will focus on: 

*NATO’s new role as a global military and war fighting alliance.
*Ending U.S. wars and occupations.
*The G8 and its role in promoting globalization.
*Current organizing for workers and immigrant rights and an end to poverty.
*Economic justice campaigns focused on cutting military spending.
*Skills-building and training for people organizing at the intersections of anti-militarism and economic justice within and outside the U.S.

For information about the counter-summit, including workshop proposal forms, registration forms, and an updated list of plenary speakers, check out the Network for a NATO-Free Future website at www.natofreefuture.org.

NATOG8-free Video Call for Submissions!

Calling all social justice videographers! The Network for a NATO-free Future (see member organizations below) is helping put together a counter-summit to the G8 and NATO summits happening this May in Chicago. To help give a U.S.-based community organizers and local activists an idea about what NATO is, its role in the world, and its connection to the global economy (as repped by the G8) to help mobilize people to come to Chicago, we are asking for a brief and exciting video made by you. We are hoping that this video can be part of a toolkit that community organizations across the U.S. can use with their membership to get them involved and inspired! Much like the amazing series of videos made for the yearly Israeli Apartheid Week (see 2012's here), we imagine a video that is 2-3 minutes and creatively teaches something about the history and current work of NATO and the G8. Submissions in more than one language are encouraged! Your submission will help support economic and global justice organizing against the heads of state responsible for conditions affecting marginalized communities in and outside of the U.S. and we'll be distributing small prizes to those who submit a video. Some videos will be shown at the NATO-free Future-organized counter-summit on May 18 & 19 and video submissions will be posted to the websites of partner organizations and spread widely. 

We have provided a very brief "history of NATO" by War Resisters League International below, as well as some links about the G8 and NATO's recent aggression.

Please submit the video by April 2, 2012--we're looking forward to seeing your work!

To submit, upload your video to YouTube and tag it as "natog8freefuture." From there, we'll post it to our YouTube channel.

Organizations who have signed on so far include:

Abolition 2000, American Friends Service Committee Peace and Economic Security Program and Chicago Peacebuilding Program, Chicago Jobs with Justice, Chicago Labor Against the War, Chicago Move the Money Campaign, Code Pink, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, Greater New Haven Peace Council, Lawyers Committee on Nuclear Policy, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, Peace Action (national, Chicago and Massachusetts) United for Peace and Justice, US Labor Against the War, US Peace Council, War Resisters League. Chicago New New Deal, United for Justice and Peace US Labor Against the War, War Resisters League, Western States Legal Foundation, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom

NATO-G8 Overview

A brief summary of NATO: http://wri-irg.org/node/11629 

A Brief Summary of the G8:  http://www.fpif.org/reports/g8_and_global_governance

Articles on NATO by counter-summit speaker Vijay Prashad:

Syria and NATO: http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/4230/cynicism-around-syria_russia-as-smokescreen

Kabul, Afghanistan: http://www.eurasiareview.com/06012012-afghanistan-and-the-surge-to-withdrawal-oped/

Libya: http://williambowles.info/2011/10/22/qaddafi-from-beginning-to-end-by-vijay-prashad/

NATO-G8 Deeper Study & Organizing Tools

"The G8 Globalization Addicts: G8 leaders are still defending a system that brought about the first fully synchronized global economic failure." by Ann Pettifor: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/mar/26/g20-g8-globalisation?INTCMP=SRCH

"The G8 and NATO: International Capital and its Army Head for Chicago." by Ron Jacobs: http://www.counterpunch.org/2011/07/29/the-g8-and-nato

"The G8 Itself": http://web.archive.org/web/20060602124430/http://www.mapleleafweb.com/features/global_event/g8/critics/g8.html

"NATO's True Role in U.S. Grand Strategy: Encircling Russia, Targeting China" by Diana Johnstone: http://www.counterpunch.org/2010/11/18/nato-s-true-role-in-us-grand-strategy

Afghanistan and the U.S. war economy:

WRL Curriculum: Brought to You by Bombs and Budgets: Tools for Reclaiming Communities from Militarism

Conflicting views on Libya:*

Phyllis Bennis:  Dangers of the NATO intervention and its role in the future of Libya as well as Africa: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuZFZviEe8g

“The Libyan Model?” by Vijay Prashad: http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/4353/the-libyan-model

“Cynicism around Syria: Russia as Smokescreen” by Vijay Prashad: http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/4230/cynicism-around-syria_russia-as-smokescreen

“We Don’t Want our Revolution Stolen: On the Ground in Libya.” by Anjali Kamat: http://www.alternet.org/world/151038/%22we_don%27t_want_our_revolution_stolen%22%3A_on_the_ground_in_libya?page=entire

 *View expressed in these articles aren't necessarily those of WRL.