GLOBAL PEACE AND JUSTICE AUCKLAND NEWSLETTER #16, December 23, 2002

Website http://www.gpja.pl.net/ Contact details: Forums – John Minto, (09) 8463173 jbminto@xtra.co.nz; Newsletter Editor – Mike Treen 0212547440 miket@pl.net Web page – Geraldine Peters (09) 3570655 bern@ihug.co.nz Donations can be sent to GPJA, 84 Paice Ave, Sandringham, Auckland. All communication regarding the GPJA mailing list (email or snail) should be addressed to gpjamailinglist@xtra.co.nz

Dear friends,

Thanks to everyone who joined the protest on December 15 against the war on Iraq. (For news report see below). Unfortunately the war preparations continue their relentless course. Iraq hands in its 12000-page report; it gets hijacked by the US which immediately concludes Iraq is in “material breach” of the UN resolution. Iraq responds that the US can send its own CIA agents to join the inspectors to visit any site and the US dismisses the offer as a “gimmick”. Hans Blix asks the US/UK for the information they claim to have to allow them to do their job and is brushed off. It is clear that for the US/UK there is only one outcome they will allow – a war. The next deadline is the inspectors report due January 17. It has become obvious that the tight timetable imposed on Iraq and the inspectors by the UN resolution was designed to fit the war planning of the US. Military action will probably begin during February – March with a bombing campaign the clear winter nights followed by a ground invasion. The UN Security Council, which remains unaccountable to the General Assembly, has been continuously bullied or bribed by the US with impunity. Meanwhile the NZ Prime Minister pledges that “should the Security Council decide on the use of force, New Zealand as a committed member of the UN would endeavour to make a contribution.”

When the war begins there will be an emergency picket outside the US consulate from 5pm the same day. Plans are also underway for a big “Peace in the Park” concert/festival on February 16 from 2pm in Potters Park, Balmoral. If you can help see below. The Council of Trade Unions have also come out in opposition to any involvement in the Iraq war which can provide opportunities for antiwar groups get more support from the unions

GPJA members have been active in alerting local councils of the danger that the WTO Gats negotiations pose for the provision of council controlled services. See: Arena applauds City Council resistance to Gats http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/stories/PO0212/S00122.htm How Gats could affect your life http://www.redpepper.org.uk/x-GATS1.html

PEACE IN THE PARK CONCERT/FESTIVAL - SUNDAY FEB 16TH - FROM 2PM AT POTTERS PARK (Cnr Balmoral and Dominion Roads) This festival - a family type fun day with a strong political message against the American war plans for Iraq is being planned and we need help from GPJA supporters!

(1) We have several acts lined up including Shona Laing but we need to hear from you if you would like to be part of the entertainment - anything from 30seconds to 20 minutes! e.g. music, sing, band, dance, poetry, cultural items, street theatre, comedy etc etc Contact Chris Holland re entertainment Ph 3370332 or email chrisholland@paradise.net.nz (2) Sound and Stage - We need a good stage and a very good sound system but we hope we can keep the cost down as this is not a commercial venture. Can you help? Please contact Chris Holland - details above. (3) Stalls for organisations - Would your group like to have a stall for information, sales etc. Please contact John Minto at Ph 8463173 or email jbminto@xtra.co.nz (4) Speakers -we plan to have interspersed between the entertainment several 3-minute slots for people to talk about the war against Iraq and/or about their organisation. Would you like a spot? Contact John Minto - details above (5) Food stalls - know any group that would like to run a food stall? - contact us (6) Any other creative ideas - banners, bouncy castle for kids, face painting, stilt walking. Please get in touch if you can help with any of these.

WHAT’S ON IN AUCKLAND

Saturday, January 4, 2pm, Aotea Square, Queen St Palestine/Israel Rally for Peace, supporting peace and justice based on Removal of Israeli Occupation, Right of Return for Refugees, Sharing Jerusalem and Cessation of Jewish only Settlements in occupied Palestine. Contact David Wakim tel (09) 520 0201.

Sunday, January 19, 10am, 84 Paice Ave, Sandringham GPJA Committee meeting.

Sunday, February 2, 2pm, outside the Synagogue, Greys Ave (Pitt street end) City A March for Justice and Peace (Synagogue to Church to Mosque) - assemble at 2pm outside the Synagogue at Kadimah College Greys Ave (Pitt street end) City; then march via Hopetoun St, to Ponsonby Rd, to Vermont St to the grounds of the Church then to the grounds of the Mosque opposite - at each place there will be time for prayer, comments and song. The march is to support the international 'Open Jerusalem - end occupation' peace march supported by Jews, Christians and Muslims walking between Bethlehem and Jerusalem on 31 December 2001. For more info contact Kevin McBride, Pax Christi, email paxnz@xtra.co.nz tel (09) 377 5541 or David Wakim tel (09) 520 0201.

Monday, February 3, 7.30pm, Trades hall, 147 Great North Rd, Grey Lynn 1st GPJA Forum for 2003. We return to the themes of globalisation and war with Mike Treen updating the situation regarding Gulf War II and Dr David Bedgood reporting on a recent trip to Argentina to see working class resistance to the crisis there.

Sunday, February 16, 2003, 2pm, Potters Park, Balmoral “Peace in the Park”. A festival of music to protest against war.

Wednesday, February 19, 7pm, Auckland Community Learning Centre, Poronui St, Mt Eden. 1st of 7 weekly classes on “Human Rights” led by Anthony Ravlich. The political nature of human rights and globalisation has resulted in an increasing gap between the rich and the poor both in NZ and internationally. There is a need to have economic, social and cultural rights in law so all interests are represented and causes of crime, suicide, terrorism and refugees addressed. Course fee $40. Registration required. Phone 6388780.

OTHER NEWS/REQUESTS

Judge Joyce has ruled that IKE FINAU will be jailed for 21 days for contempt of court if he hasn't removed his signs by 17 January 2003. Ike Finau's signs will stay up until Attorney-General Margaret Wilson confirms that this Auckland City Council Bylaw and ruling that totally prohibits any signage on private property complies with the Bill of Rights Act and Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Whether or not Ike Finau becomes a political prisoner from 17 January 2003 is in the hands of Attorney-General Margaret Wilson. Judge Joyce's has extended his February 1 2002 ruling to cover signage on Ike's vehicle as well as signage on Ike's property. This is manifestly unfair because signage on vehicles was never part of the original complaint or Judge Joyce's ruling Feb 1 2002. What now constitutes 'signage on vehicles'? "Does this latest ruling of Judge Joyce now mean that no-one in Auckland City is allowed to have a bumper sticker on their vehicle either?" asks Ike Finau. Ike eagerly awaits the response from Mayor John Banks to Dilip Rupa's letter asking whether his 'LOYAL' sign supporting Team New Zealand is also illegal under this by law and this bylaw and Judge’s ruling. Penny Bright, Media Spokesperson, Water Pressure Group. Ph (09) 846 9825

Dear Friends, 10 days ago the President of the PALESTINE PEN Centre in Palestine and Chair, Womens International League for Peace and Freedom, Palestine, Dr Hanan Awwad visited in New Zealand to speak at the international conference of WILPF held at Waipapa Marae, Auckland. She arrived very late because the Israelis denied her a visa to exit on time, but a few of us had an opportunity to meet with her before she left for Australia. As a poet and author you can imagine how eloquent she was describing some of her most recent experiences and views on progressing justice for the Palestinian people, thereby securing peace for both Israelis and Palestinians. She said that things have never been worse for Palestinians and PEN which has a key role working with many NGO's is having a particularly tough time. Currently, the Israelis are trying to shut down the PEN Centre and as the economic situation for so many Palestinians is so bleak, the group is having real difficulty paying the rent on their office and they are facing imminent eviction.

With others in Auckland, we are trying to raise some funds to help with this immediate problem and would welcome any assistance might be able to offer. The plan is to collect the funds and have them taken to Jerusalem with Dr Alan Kerr and his wife Hazel who are travelling to Gaza on January 9th to do a spell of medical and social work there. (Alan, formerly of Greenlane Heart unit has committed to staying 2 months and work there with injured and sick children mainly but also to train medical staff who are unable to leave Gaza to get the training elsewhere. Hazel will meet up with Hanan and give her whatever $ are gathered here in NZ and can subsequently report back to donors.

It is a frantic time of the year to make and respond to such a request but this is a very immediate need with such a direct link to Hanan Awwad and PEN/WILPF through the Kerrs that it seems possible to accomplish and it is something which Kiwis concerned with events in Palestine could contribute to. If you have any questions or concerns please contact me. If you could forward any donation to me asap I will receipt it. PHRC does not have charitable status the gift would not be tax deductible. Please forward this message on to anyone who may be able help. Thankyou for whatever you are able to do - donate, pass on the message etc and sincere apologies for any duplication of this message that you may receive. Send donations to: Janfrie Wakim, 95 Market Road, Epsom, Auckland. Ph 5200201. Palestine Human Rights Campaign.

The HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION is inviting nominations for membership of the National Advisory Council to the National Plan of Action for Human Rights project. Nominations are due by 28 February 2003 npa@hrc.co.nz

MESSAGES FROM IRAQ: John Gleisner (Religious Society of Friends, Aotearoa/NZ) left Wellington this week on his way to Baghdad where he will join the Voices in the Wilderness Iraq Peace Team. Messages received from John during his time in Iraq will be available on-line at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/jgiraq.htm His reports will be uploaded to that web page as they come in throughout the next three weeks when we will be otherwise off-line.

MEDICAL SUPPLIES FOR IRAQ - Quaker Peace and Service Aotearoa/NZ are once more raising money to buy medical supplies for Iraq. These will be used to support the US-based NGO, LIFE for Relief and Development, mainly in their cancer relief projects, and the Rome-based NGO, Bridge to Baghdad's Sindibad Primary Health Care Clinic in Basra. Cheques can be made out to Quaker Peace and Service and sent to QPS, 7 Moncrieff St., Wellington; credit card donations can be made by email - for more info about that, or about 'Medical supplies for Iraq', please contact Tony Maturin or Sandra Jones tel (04) 389-4715 or email hoggard@top.net.nz

PETITION UPDATE: 'No NZ support for the 'war on terrorism'' A further 2,314 signatures on the national 'No NZ support for the 'war on terrorism'' petition were presented to parliament on 10 December 2002 (International Human Rights Day). Together with the previous presentation on 11 September 2002, the total now handed in is 3,376. There will be a further presentation of signatures on this petition when parliament resumes sitting in February. If you haven't yet collected all your friends and family signatures on this petition, why not use the holiday period to do just that! It is available on-line at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/pet003.htm

Hello! I am a REFUGEE and Migrant Service volunteer supporter. At the moment I am helping a Palestinian family, they came out of Mangere 17 days ago. They are a lovely family, mum, dad, 4 kids and have taken 19 months to get here from Iraq. I am approaching your organisation as they are desperate for many things and their $1200 establishment grant and donations has still left them 'wanting'. Anyhow, on a practical level...if anyone has the following spare could they call me to arrange how to get it to Ahmed and Firyaal. Dining table and chairs, Washing Machine, Tools, Desk, Drawers, Vacuum, Lawnmower, Landscape paintings, Telephone, TV. If you can help contact Steph Askeur ph: 620 0824 wk: 360 0745 stephaskeur@hotmail.com

Dear Campaigners, NESTLE, the world's largest coffee company, are demanding millions of dollars from a country where 11 million people are facing famine. Take action to stop this scandal now! www.maketradefair.com/go/scrooge/ Ethiopia is currently experiencing a terrible drought. This crisis has been compounded by the collapse in the global coffee price, which many of you have been helping us campaign on. The Ethiopian government fears this drought could cause the worst famine the country has ever faced. Nestl\xE9 has demanded that Ethiopia pay over $6million in compensation for a company that was nationalised 27 years ago, a company that Nestl\xE9 didn't even own at the time. The $6m represents 0.01% of Nestl\xE9's turnover last year. But for Ethiopia, $6m would buy food for over a million people for a whole month. Take action now: Click below to send a message to Nestl\xE9, telling them to drop the claim for $6m from Ethiopia: www.maketradefair.com/go/scrooge/

Foreign Control Watchdog #101 now online http://www.converge.org.nz/watchdog/01/index01.htm

Coinciding with International Human Rights Day, the World Council of Churches (WCC) has today opened a new interactive version of its "Decade to Overcome Violence (2001-2010): Churches seeking Reconciliation and Peace" website. Its address is: http://www.wcc-coe.org/dov.

January 24-26 - WAIHOPAI Spybase protest! NZ is one of George Bush's most enthusiastic allies in his apparently endless and borderless 'war on terror' - the public face of that is the involvement of the SAS in the war in Afghanistan; but New Zealand's most significant contribution to that war, and any other wars waged by our Western allies, is the Waihopai spybase. Even though the Government is not so keen on following the US in its plans to wage war on Iraq, Waihopai will play a key role in that too, because it is controlled by the US, with NZ (including Parliament) having little or no idea what goes on there (let alone any control). Waihopai does not operate in the national interests of New Zealand or our neighbours. Basically it is a foreign spybase on NZ soil and directly involves us in America's wars. Waihopai must be closed! We invite people from around the country to join us for the weekend of anti-war protest at this spybase. Come prepared for roughing it and camping out. For more info contact the Anti-Bases Campaign, Box 2258, Christchurch; email cafca@chch.planet.org.nz or check out http://www.converge.org.nz/abc

April 21-24: OCEANIA SOCIAL FORUM - Bringing together the peoples of Oceania to renew the vision of the world we share, Nelson, Aotearoa/New Zealand. A social forum inspired by the 2001 and 2002 World Social Forums that have been held in Porto Alegre, Brazil, is to be held in Nelson, from Monday 21st to Thursday 24th April 2003. Speakers include Edward Goldsmith, Maude Barlow, Susan Hawthorne, Pauline Tangiora, Sohail Inayatullah, Annette Sykes, Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed, Pauline Tangiora, Sohail Inayatullah, and Susan Andrews - Future Vision Eco-village (Brazil) among others, with Tony Clarke to be confirmed. For further information: Re the Oceania Social Forum: www.oceaniasocialforum.org.nz P. O. Box 984, Nelson. Ph 03 544 2449. Re the World Social Forum: www.forumsocialmundial.org.br WEB NEWS

ANTIWAR

Auckland and Wellington antiwar protests http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/stories/PO0212/S00133.htm http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/stories/HL0212/S00090.htm

Unions oppose war on Iraq http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/stories/PO0212/S00156.htm

The Bush administration is a bloodthirsty wild animal, by Harold Pinter http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2002/12/11/do1101 .xml&sSheet=/news/2002/12/11/ixnewstop.html

We oppose both Saddam Hussein and the US War on Iraq http://www.zmag.org/antiwarsigners.htm

IRAQ DOSSIER

The merchants of death – US Companies listed in Iraq report http://www.democracynow.org/Zumach.htm

America tore out 8000 pages of Iraq dossier http://www.sundayherald.com/30195

IRAQ WAR

Iraq: CIA can inspect sites http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A25622-2002Dec22.html

John Pilger writes on the "secret" war which has seen a 300 per cent increase in bombing raids on Iraq. John Pilger: 20 Dec 2002 http://pilger.carlton.com/print/125498

Casualties of an 'Undeclared War' Civilians Killed and Injured as U.S. Airstrikes Escalate in Southern Iraq http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A23834-2002Dec21.html

THE WAR WITHOUT LIMIT

Two years ago a project set up by the men who now surround George W Bush said what America needed was "a new Pearl Harbor". Its published aims have, alarmingly, come true. John Pilger: 12 Dec 2002 http://pilger.carlton.com/print/124759

Failure of the 82nd airborne: As the US prepares for war on Iraq, its troops in Afghanistan are coming under increasing attack from the forces they were sent to dig out. Dan Plesch, Thursday December 19, 2002, The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/Print/0,3858,4570293,00.html

On international human rights day women say little has changed http://www.irinnews.org/report.asp?ReportID=31314&SelectRegion=Central_Asia&; SelectCountry=AFGHANISTAN

OTHER

Journalists under fire for telling the truth http://www.independent.co.uk/story.jsp?story=362545

Sth Korean protest US troop immunity http://www.etaiwannews.com/Asia/2002/12/15/1039937454.htm
Topic revision: r5 - 24 Dec 2002, RovinNZ
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