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ACTION ALERT! Chicago Might Pass Anti War Resolution!

NOW is the time to contact Daley, and the city aldermen.
Council weighs anti-war vote
December 4, 2002


Chicago would join Detroit and Seattle in opposing a "preemptive U.S. military attack" on Iraq, under a City Council resolution co-signed by 11 aldermen that could be shot down by Mayor Daley.

The mayor acknowledged that "we're all against war" and that he, too, would like to see United Nations weapons inspections currently under way in Iraq run their course.

But Daley said military action just might be unavoidable to stop Saddam Hussein from amassing weapons "very dangerous to the world" and to the Iraqi people.

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"We're all against war. But when you have a tyrant," you sometimes have no choice but to take a stand, the mayor said.

"If we would have spoken out against Hitler in the 1930s, we would have never had the Second World War. . . . The City Council can pass any resolution they want. Truthfully, I'm more worried about education."

The mayor responded angrily when a reporter tried to press him further about the parallel between Saddam and Hitler.

"What would you say about Hitler? You would have left Hitler alive in the 1930s? If you were around then, would you have gone after Hitler or would you have allowed Hitler to have the Holocaust? You have to read history to understand that," he said.

If Daley lobbies against a resolution with only 11 co-signers, its fate is sealed.

Ald. Joseph Moore (49th) countered that the Bush administration has not made its case for a war that would dry up domestic funding and "distract us from the very real threat of terrorism."

There has been no hard evidence of Iraqi collusion with al-Qaida and no compelling case that Iraq presents an "imminent threat" to the United States, Moore said.

"The young men and women in my neighborhood are overwhelmingly African-American and Latino. They're the ones most likely to be subject to a draft or least able to avoid one if it comes to that. They can't pull strings and get college deferments."

Ald. Toni Preckwinkle (4th), another resolution supporter, defended the decision to plunge into the foreign policy arena at a time when most Chicagoans have more parochial concerns.

"I am very fearful that the resources that are swept up to accommodate the war effort will come out of programs that are desperately needed in our cities."

Ald. Helen Shiller (46th) said she sees parallels to Vietnam.

"I'm concerned that Bush is acting like a cowboy and it will have ramifications for all of us.''

The Chicago City Council has taken numerous stands on national and international issues--from slavery reparations and apartheid in South Africa to the McBride principles in Northern Ireland and the debt that Swiss banks owe to Holocaust survivors.

The resolution to be introduced at today's council meeting would put aldermen on record opposing a "preemptive U.S. military attack on Iraq unless it is demonstrated that Iraq poses a real and imminent threat to the security and safety of the United States."

Joining Moore, Shiller and Preckwinkle as co-signers were aldermen Leslie Hairston (5th); Freddrenna Lyle (6th); Ted Thomas (15th); Leonard DeVille (21st); Ricardo Munoz (22nd); Billy Ocasio (26th); Ed Smith (28th) and Isaac Carothers (29th).

Moore said he got the idea for the anti-war resolution after a phone call from Betty Willhoyte, former president of the League of Women Voters of Illinois.

Willhoyte is active in Chicagoans Against War in Iraq, a coalition of religious and community leaders that Sunday released a letter of opposition to a war with Iraq.
Sun Times 12/4/'02



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