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O-26: Chicago clergy, peace groups mobilize for local anti-war rally, march

Local clergy, peace groups mobilize to oppose Bush administration campaign for Iraq war in solidarity with national rally in Washington, DC.
Photo: Iraq under Embargo - Kamal dying - Photography by Alan Pogue

Chicago, IL: The Committee of 100, an interfaith group of a hundred local pastors and priests from the Chicagoland area, will join local peace groups in mobilizing for a mass rally and march at noon on Saturday, October 26, at the Federal Plaza at Jackson and Dearborn to oppose the Bush administration's push for war against Iraq. The event coincides with similar actions in Washington, DC and San Francisco.

The effort is being organized by a core group of clergy that includes Rev. Walter L. Coleman, Rev. Oscar Carrasco, Fr. Larry Dowling, Rev. Thomas Jackson, Rev. Paul Jakes, Fr. Raul Martinez, Rev. Myron McCoy, Fr. Mike Pfleger; Fr. Mike Shanahan, and Rev. Hycel Taylor. While the group set a target goal of 100 local parishes for its initial organizing push, dozens of additional churches have signed onto the effort in recent days.

The ministers argue that the U.S. government has effectively already been at war with the Iraqi people for a decade – and that ten years of embargo and routine bombings have killed roughly a million children and adults from bomb blasts, disease, malnutrition, lack of medicine, polluted water and environmental damage. They say a stepped-up war will only further devastate Iraqi civilians and cost Americans hundreds of billions of dollars that could instead fund healthcare, jobs, environmental protection and housing.

Endorsers of Saturday's protest include ACORN, the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee/Chicago Chapter, AFSC, A.N.S.W.E.R., the Chicago Anti-Bashing Network, the Chicago Coalition Against War & Racism, Chicagoans Against the War on Iraq, the 8th Day Center for Justice, the Nation of Islam, Neighbors For Peace, Pax Christi, Pueblo Sin Fronteras, the Puerto Rican Cultural Center, and the Southwestern Community Coalition.




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