End the Occupation of Iraq
End this Era of War
Call for World Action
We, World Peace Now in Tokyo, send our greetings of solidarity and peace to
every friend committed to action against Bush’s war of aggression and for
immediate withdrawal of the foreign occupation forces in Iraq.
Three years ago Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi was one of the first national
leaders in the world to express support for Bush’s war of aggression against
Iraq. In January 2004 he made Japan part of the U.S.-led coalition by sending
the Japanese Self-Defense Force troops to Samawah in the southern part of
Iraq. Though it is said that the Ground SDF troops are planned to be
withdrawn in May, the Japanese government policy is to keep the Air SDF units
in Kuwait to continue to provide logistic support for the occupation forces.
But that is not all. Fully integrated into the U.S. global strategy of war on
terror, the JSDF is now being readied to participate in any armed conflict in
any areas in the world to fight on the side of the United States. To make
this possible, the Japanese government intends to amend Article 9 of the
Constitution, the pacifist clause that declares Japan’s abandonment of war
and delegitimates maintenance of armed forces.
It is well known that in all U.S. wars of aggression, from the Vietnam war
through the Gulf war to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, the U.S.
bases in Japanese archipelago, centering on those in Okinawa, have played
vital roles as the major U.S. staging bases. Now, under the current U.S.
global military force transformation, these bases are going to be drastically
strengthened with respect to command, intelligence, and logistic functions,
all this at the expense of the safety of citizens in this country.
We have been opposing Bush’s Iraqi war and the JSDF’s participation in the
U.S.-led occupation forces in Iraq. We strongly demand that the occupation
forces stop killing Afghani and Iraqi people and that the occupation forces
withdraw from Iraq. We also strongly oppose the reinforcement and expansion
of U.S. military bases on Japanese archipelago.
In Iraq, conflicts between the Shiites and Sunnis are reportedly aggravated.
The best way to prevent escalation of these conflicts into a civil war
certainly in the immediate withdrawal of the occupation forces.
We launched World Peace Now in January 2003, just before the U.S. attack on
Iraq, and since then we have been working as a new wave of anti-war movement
We will hold a peace gathering and march on March 18th under the slogan,
“End the occupation of Iraq. End this era of war.” Other similar actions
will take place in Japan on and around March 18.
Friends, let us continue and intensify our efforts to bring an end to war and
military occupation and to create peace!
World Peace Now, Tokyo,