‘No war with Iran’ rally tomorrow in SF

Groups like Direct Action to Stop the War, CodePink, World Can’t Wait and Stop AIPAC are concerned that House Concurrent Resolution 362 — “Expressing the sense of Congress regarding the threat posed to international peace, stability in the Middle East, and the vital national security interests of the United States by Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons and regional hegemony” — is a prelude to war with Iran.

Their news release notes the bill “demands that the President initiate an international effort to immediately and dramatically increase the economic, political, and diplomatic pressure on Iran to verifiably suspend its nuclear enrichment activities by, inter alia, prohibiting the export to Iran of all refined petroleum products; imposing stringent inspection requirements on all persons, vehicles, ships, planes, trains, and cargo entering or departing Iran…” That, they say, is pronounced “blockade,” and could too easily slide toward war.

The resolution now has 220 cosponsors including more than 100 Democrats, but not a single one from the greater Bay Area. Nonetheless, activists want House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco — a strong supporter of Israel and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which have been pressing hard for this resolution — to put a stop to this, and so they’ll rally at 3 p.m. tomorrow, Tuesday, July 8, outside the federal building at 450 Golden Gate Ave. in San Francisco.

What’s Pelosi’s official, stated position on the resolution? Pelosi spokesman Nadeam Elshami told me a short while ago he’s still trying to get me an answer to that question. “However, the speaker has publicly stated that she is supportive of strong international sanctions on Iran and an aggressive diplomatic efforts focused on the Iranian nuclear program,” he said.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Thanks so much. It is really good that Pelosi’s office is getting media inquiries. Beyond her likely support of the resolution is the fact that the House leadership is intending this resolution was going to be treated as “noncontroversial” and placed under what they call suspension… like a resolution supporting the fight against Cancer or applauding a victorious Little League team . Which means there was going to allowed only 20 minutes debate. 20 freakin minutes to debate a naval embargo, even it is only a “sense of congress” resolution, what is going on here?

    But it is not just that. It is not even the clear call for an embargo, an act of war (despite contradictory language saying nothing in this resolution authorizes military force). It is the whole set of premises that this resolution rests. That Iran is in serious violation of the NPT. While it is the US that has been in violation of the NPT as it sets out to create a new “generation” of nuclear weapons (which may soon prevent the human race from creating another human generation). It is required by the NPT to eliminate its nuclear arsenal. It is Israel that has introduced nuclear weapons to the Middle East, it has a massive stockpile of nuclear weapons and has not even signed the NPT (which makes it illegal under US law to provide Israel with military aid). It is the US that illegally invaded Iraq and is in massive violation of international law. Yet the Congress, for the most part, only sees Iraq as a strategic mistake, only because it was too big a project, or should have only been undertaken with more troops. Not as a criminal act of aggression.

    Now Congress seems set on supporting these steps that could lead to war with Iran, on the pretext of stopping nuclear weapons. This nation, armed to the teeth with nuclear weapons, is going to bomb a nation we damn well know is without nuclear weapons on the pretext of stopping the spread of nuclear weapons. How can anyone buy that? How can Congress, at the behest of AIPAC, are attempting to foist this pack of lies on the American people. We won’t let them get away with it. Not this time.