Sanctions are economic warfare, preventing ordinary Iranians from accessing the medicine and basic necessities they need to survive. Sanctions are collective punishment, plunging people into poverty and placing the entire population under siege. Rather than an alternative to war, sanctions pave the way for war. We don’t need another unnecessary war and we don’t need to perpetuate another humanitarian crisis.
We demand that all Democratic Party presidential candidates prioritize diplomacy, and oppose economic sanctions and war on Iran.
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In the past two years, the United States has pulled out of an internationally negotiated and approved deal that, while in place, prevented further conflict and opened the door to normalizing relations with Iran. In its place, the United States has imposed brutal sanctions on Iran which primarily hurt middle and working class Iranians, causing them to lose access to basic necessities such as food and medicine. These actions by the United States have played right into the predictions of the right-wing in Iran who said that the United States could not be trusted. As a result, the United States has silenced the voices of peace movements, moderates, leftists, workers, feminists, and environmentalists who supported the deal and were open to peaceful relations with the West.
The Trump administration, Republicans and many Democrats claim that they want to force Iran to the negotiating table, but this is a lie. They do not want to negotiate. Iran already agreed to and complied with an effective deal. We have seen this pattern before. Crippling sanctions and threats of violence are intended to foment regime change in Iran, advance American financial interests in the region, and distract us from domestic policies that continue to maintain inequality in the United States.
This campaign will target the American public and government. We oppose war, violence, and American imperialism regardless of any objectionable actions the Iranian government may take. Neither do we work with any person that is affiliated with or hired by the Iranian government, official or semi-official state media, or anyone who is thought to be part of any specific political faction inside of Iran. A key tenet of this campaign is that we, as people living in the United States, must oppose our own government’s undemocratic and violent actions. Most importantly, war would be a disaster for the American and Iranian people. We can oppose US military intervention and sanctions in Iran without apologizing for or supporting the Iranian government.
For a long time, Iran has been a scapegoat for imperialist, capitalist players in U.S. politics. While Iranians have suffered as a result of sanctions and live in a state of siege thanks to the ever-present threat of war, Americans have suffered as a result of a ballooning military budget that sucks resources away from public schools, hospitals and other programs our communities need. This campaign will build power by educating people in the U.S. about how and why Iran has been demonized in the American political discourse, by publicizing the horrific consequences of a potential military conflict with Iran, and by encouraging people in the U.S. to hold their elected representatives accountable for preventing such a conflict. The campaign will further seek to highlight the relevance of this issue to the larger anti-war/anti-imperialist movement.
Finally, as part of opposing the economic warfare that is U.S. sanctions policy in Iran and challenging pervasive anti-Iranian sentiment, this campaign will compile stories from Iranians about the impact of sanctions on their lives. We will gather first-hand accounts from a wide swath of Iranian society and make these accounts accessible and shareable via social media. Our goal is to bring the reality of sanctions home to people in the U.S. so they have a more accurate picture of what the U.S. government is doing in their name. Hopefully, exposure to the direct, human cost of sanctions will galvanize more people into taking action against these policies and will make it that much harder to convince ordinary Americans that people in Iran are their enemy.
We will envision the society both Americans and Iranians deserve - a society where everyone has access to affordable food and health care, decent jobs with livable wages, and a life free from militarism, violence and oppression in all its forms.
You can help us canvass for petition signatures and talk to people at Democratic presidential candidate events.
See our event calendar for more info.
If you have questions or want to get involved with the campaign, send us a message below.
If you’d like to get involved with the NYC-DSA Anti-War Working Group, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and follow us on Twitter. NYC-DSA Anti-War Working Group monthly meetings are held at 6:30 pm on the first Wednesday of each month at Mary House (The Catholic Worker), 55 E 3rd St, New York, NY 10003.
Activists from a variety of organizations (including Sepehr Makaremi and Dylan Awalt-Conley from NYC-DSA Anti-War Working Group) stood up and disrupted numerous speakers such as the Treasury Department’s Sigal Mandelker, who runs the Trump administration’s campaign of maximum pressure on Iran, and Israeli ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer. Meanwhile, protesters stood outside of the conference holding signs that read “Peace with Iran” and “No War On Iran.” They also distributed flyers about the true nature of the UANI conference.