Peace and Justice Works
Iraq Affinity Group
PO Box 42456
Portland, OR 97242
(503) 236-3065 (Office)
For Immediate Release
Event: Expanded Friday rally to give boost to March 15 anti-war mobilization in Salem
Date: Friday, March 13, 2009
Time: 5:00 PM
Place: Pioneer Courthouse Square, SW Broadway & SW Yamhill, downtown
Portlanders to Rally Ahead of Mass Mobilization in Salem to Keep Oregon's Guard Home;
On Friday, March 13, Portlanders will rally in Pioneer Courthouse Square to call for Oregon's National Guard to stay in Oregon, as over 50 organizations prepare for a mass mobilization in Salem two days later. The event will be an expanded Portland Peaceful Response Coalition (PPRC) Friday rally and march, a weekly institution in Portland since November, 2001, as PPRC is joined by Peace and Justice Works and others. The Friday rally will be held at 5:00 PM at the SW corner of Pioneer Courthouse Square, SW Broadway and Yamhill in Portland. The Salem mobilization, titled "Stop the Wars at Home and Abroad: Keep Oregon's Guard Home from Iraq and Afghanistan," now has 53 cosponsors and endorsers and is tied to efforts in the state legislature to prevent the National Guard mobilization slated for late March.
In addition to support for three measures which would call on the Governor to keep the Guard in Oregon, the rally is timed to occur just days before the March 19th sixth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. "President Obama says he plans to leave 50,000 troops in Iraq after a 19-month drawdown," said Dan Handelman, a volunteer with Peace and Justice Works. "We say bring all the troops home now, starting by our Governor keeping Oregon's National Guard home!" The three Oregon measures are HR 2556, a bill which would give the Governor the authority to keep the Guard from deployment to Iraq, and two identical resolutions (HR 4 and SR 1) which declare the Authorizations for Military Force in Iraq and Afghanistan to be invalid.
The Friday rally will highlight the other issues to be raised in Salem on March 15, including immigrant rights, ending the Israeli siege of Gaza, stopping torture, and turning our tax money to human needs instead of war. It will begin with brief speeches at Pioneer Square, followed by a march around the sidewalks of downtown Portland, concluding back in the Square just before 6 PM.
Details on the 54 organizations involved in the March 15 mobilization can be found at http://www.pjw.info/march1509announce.html; details on the Guard Home campaign are at http://www.pjw.info/guardhomecampaign08.html .
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