This is an appeal from Stan Goff on behalf of Iraq Veterans Against the War. It is an appeal for money, so let me get that right out front.
I am asking you to go to www.ivaw.net, to click on “Donate Online”, and to become a “recurring” supporter, by providing an automatic monthly deduction transfered to IVAW of as much as you can afford — $10, $100, $500… as much as you can afford.
No group of women and men has more credibility with the public in its opposition to the war than the people who participated in it, and who are now speaking out against it. IVAW’s membership includes hundreds of highly-motivated, talented young people, who have shown a special character. They are now students, workers, musicians, philosophers, geographers, playwrights, public speakers, writers, film-makers, and several have spent time in prison for their beliefs. People like Camilo Mejia, Stephen Funk, Kevin Benderman, Charlie Anderson, Mike Hoffman, Kelly Dougherty, Pablo Paredes, Tim Goodrich, Pat Resta, Jimmy Massey, Jose Vasquez, Ivan Medina, Tina Garnanez, Alex Ryabov, Garret Reppenhagen, and many others. These are the people whose voices are amplified by contributions to IVAW.
IVAW has never had a lot, but after the expenses incurred to support Cindy Sheehan, the Crawford to DC Bus Tour, and the September 24 antiwar demonstration, there is not enough money in the bank right now to even make payroll for the part-time staff that keeps the organization afloat.
The organization needs around $10,000 a month cash flow to support its recent expansion in membership and the next year’s organizational development and objectives. Those objectives include organizer training for members, chapter concentration to develop local self-sustaining nuclei, Katrina survivor self-determination support work, and counter-recruitment initiatives. These are the IVAW priorities for the next year, in addition to the primary mission — to stop the war against Iraq.
IVAW is the only organization of its kind, with its membership drawn from armed services veterans who were on duty after September 11, 2001, the day of the event upoon which the Bush administration built it’s so-called Global War on Terror. IVAW could seek a lot of foundation money if it were to change one thing in its mission statement, and that is the demand for immediate and unilateral withdrawal of all American forces from Iraq. Calls for indefinite plans of “phased” withdrawal are much more popular with foundations who are reluctant to endanger quietly favored elected officials who have been less than sterling on the war by confronting them with their complicity in letting the Bush administration have its way. IVAW could change that mission and have access to more money. But it will not.
IVAW will not take money that has these kinds of unstated strings attached. So it needs the support of independent antiwar activists who share IVAW’s core beliefs that the occupaiton must leave as a moral imperative and that the Iraqis will be better off without the occupation — that the occupation itself is the catalyst for most of the violence there, including attacks by Iraqis against other Iraqis.
The way this movement becomes independent and stays independent is through the support of people who share its core mission and values.
Please, please help us build a sustianing financial floor under this extremely important organization. They need to be focused on their work, not on finances.
Thanks so much for your support of antiwar work, and for whatever you can commit to IVAW.
Yours very sincerely,