FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 24, 2009
Students for a Democratic Society launches campaign to protest 8 years of U.S. occupation of Afghanistan
At the 2009 national convention of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), over one hundred delegates from across the country unanimously endorsed a resolution calling for immediate U.S. withdrawal and an unconditional end to the occupation of Afghanistan.
To demonstrate solidarity with the occupied Afghan people, SDS chapters will hold campus protests on Wednesday October 7, 2009, the 8th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan.
Chapin Gray is an organizer with SDS at the Tuscaloosa, Alabama chapter. In introducing the resolution to the floor of the convention, Gray noted that, “The war in Afghanistan is not the ‘good’ war. It is an unjust occupation and needs to end now.” Gray continued, “Every anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, students have turned out to protest. Now that the U.S. is shifting its attention from Iraq to Afghanistan, and sending tens of thousands of more troops, we have to show mass opposition to the occupation of Afghanistan and demand ‘U.S. Out of Afghanistan Now’.”
The resolution adopted at the convention, “U.S Out of Afghanistan! End the War Now!”, stated in part:
October 7th will mark the eighth year that the U.S. has been at war with Afghanistan, under the auspice of fighting “the war on terror.” In eight years under occupation, tens of thousands of Afghans have been killed by U.S. air strikes, bombs, and bullets, and the Afghani infrastructure has been devastated. In just one day of this war, May 4, 2009, U.S. air strikes killed over 150 Afghan children, women, men in a village in Farah province.
Kati Ketz, an organizer with the Antiwar Working Group of SDS, emphasized, “The Afghan people have a right to self-determination, and a right to live in a country that is not being constantly bombed by US and NATO forces.” Ketz stated, “We call on all students and youth in the U.S. to demonstrate solidarity and take to the streets October 7 to demand ‘U.S. out of Afghanistan’! Money going to bomb, oppress and occupy Afghanistan – and Iraq – should be used here at home to support schools and fund scholarships.”
Students and youth are encouraged to sign on to the call to action initiated by SDS. Endorsements by local, regional and national antiwar coalitions are also welcomed.