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Not one more dead!

Local coalition to take part in National Day Against War in Afghanistan, Iran

HALIFAX - A COALITION of local social justice organizations, including the Halifax Peace Coalition, the Students Coalition Against War, and the Council of Canadians, will be organizing a downtown march in Halifax on October 27th. Organizers are demanding an immediate removal of Canadian troops from the current NATO-lead mission in Afghanistan, as well as an end to Canada's tacit support for the Bush regime's drive to war in Iran. The actions in Halifax, organized in conjunction with a call issued by the Canadian Peace Alliance, will be joined by marches across the globe demanding an end to the "war on terror" in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Afghanistan is getting worse, not better," says Stuart Neatby, a member of the Halifax Peace Coalition. "Large-scale attacks that are largely being carried out by NATO forces have resulted in literally thousands of civilian deaths. Afghanistan is a mass humanitarian tragedy, and the war has now created one of the biggest population of displaced people in the world."

The state of reconstruction in Kandahar is a shambles. The Senlis Council recently released a report that found little of the promised reconstruction and aid projects promised by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) in Kandahar. Afghan people are starving just outside the gates of the Canadian base. Their local hospitals have no medicine or equipment despite promises of money from CIDA. These failures, coupled with the rise in civilian casualties, have resulted in more people joining the resistance.

The death toll of Canadian soldiers is also on the rise as well, currently standing at 71. The total number of injured soldiers remains unknown after an order by the Harper government to obscure these figures. As the Department of National Defense ramps up its 'Operation Connection' recruiting campaign, it is clear that the Canadian government is preying upon the high cost of post-secondary education in order to encourage youth to join the Canadian Forces. This campaign is particularly targetted against Nova Scotians who already make up a disproportionate number of Canadian soldiers serving in Afghanistan.

Canada continues to be a willing accomplice to the Bush administration's "war on terror" and has yet to oppose war crimes of the US invasion/occupation of Iraq, which has claimed the lives of an estimated 1.2 million civilians, while Defense Minister Peter Mackay seems outwardly supportive of the Bush regime's drive to war in Iran, suggesting that Canadian naval vessels could take part in this war.

"Considering our own checkered history of selling nuclear reactors to US-friendly regimes, including North Korea and even pre-1979 Iran, Canada's condemnation of Iran's nuclear program reeks of hypocrisy," says Tamara Lorincz of the Halifax Peace Coalition.

We will gather in the streets on October 27th to make it clear that Canadians are prepared to remove the Harper government from office over Canada's role in Afghanistan and over its potential role in Iran.

For More Information:
Stuart Neatby, Halifax Peace Coalition, (902) 405-9480, stu.neatby@gmail.com
Tamara Lorincz, Halifax Peace Coalition, (902) 443-2423, tlorincz@dal.ca


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