Tuesday, March 1, 2011

From Unionists in US to Workers in Egypt: "Our Solidarity!"

A statement that has been circulated by US unionists in solidarity with Egyptian workers:

As trade unionists, we join our Egyptian sisters and brothers in welcoming the fall of dictator Hosni Mubarak. We salute the courage of the Egyptian people who have shed blood and endured many sacrifices in their struggle for democracy, which continues to unfold. The revolution has already inspired people from Libya, Bahrain, Yemen and Algeria to Wisconsin to resist the same system of economic injustice and repression.

The roots of this revolution are in a decade of labor revolt against policies that made Mubarak the richest man in the world, while impoverished Egyptian workers earn 43 cents per day.

These workers toppled Mubarak and have continued to challenge a neoliberal regime of privatization, deregulation and union-busting engineered--and brutally enforced throughout the region--by the United States and its allies, taking many actions, including striking and forming new independent trade unions.

Moreover, Egyptians want an end to their government's complicity in U.S. wars of conquest in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Yemen and elsewhere, and in Israel's brutal siege on Gaza.

To keep these detested policies in place, Egypt has long been--after Israel--the largest recipient of U.S. military aid. Thus, while mouthing democratic platitudes, the Obama administration backed Mubarak to the very end, even allowing him to draw on the $1.3 billion in U.S. funding that killed more than 300 democracy protesters.

First, the U.S. and Israel sought to replace Mubarak with vice president, CIA asset and torturer-in-chief, Omar Suleiman--who has helped Israel to strangle Gaza, and openly threatened the revolution with a "coup." Now, it backs the army, which already has refused to rescind repressive emergency laws, has evicted democracy protesters from Tahrir Square, and has threatened to ban independent unions and strikes.

While Egyptians are standing firm, they need support to ensure that this revolution is not--like those in Iran (1953), Guatemala (1954), the Congo (1961), Chile (1973), and so many others--drowned in a sea of blood by the U.S. and its client regimes.

Therefore, we demand that the U.S. cut off all aid to the Egyptian dictatorship--right now.

We also call on all supporters to immediately converge on Egyptian embassies, missions, consulates, and at U.S. government offices, in response to any further attack on the revolution.

We also join with millions of Egyptians to say:

No Mubarak, No Suleiman, No U.S. Puppet Dictator!
Don't Leave the Streets!
Support Egyptian Strikers!
Free the Political Prisoners!
Arrest the Killers and Torturers!
No Neoliberal Economic Austerity!
Open the Border to Gaza!

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