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Council to blast war with Iraq

Kurtis Alexander
Tuesday October 01, 2002

Consistent with Berkeley City Council’s practice of international politicking and with anti-war discussions nearby cities, council is considering asking the President to go through the United Nations to resolve Iraq’s military threat. 

The resolution, which is being written by councilmembers Linda Maio and Maudelle Shirek, would put city support behind by U.S. Congresswoman Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, and her effort to prevent a U.S. first strike.  

Lee’s push, formalized as House Concurrent Resolution 473, requests that President George W. Bush go through the United Nations, and advocates a “peaceful” solution. 

Maio said most Berkeley voters identify with Lee’s sentiment. 

“Many people have tremendous concerns about rushing into war,” Maio said. “Our resolution supporting Barbara Lee furthers the dialogue.” 

The Berkeley resolution, which Maio said is still being drafted and would be ready for council consideration next week, is merely symbolic and carries no action. 

Last week, the city of Santa Cruz started the latest round of community-based anti-war protest when its City Council unanimously passed a resolution denouncing a United States-led attack of Iraq. Tonight, Oakland’s City Council is slated to consider support for Lee’s anti-war resolution. 

“We want to set an example for young people not to kill each other in the streets,” said Oakland Councilmember Nancy Nadel, sponsor of Oakland’s peace resolution. Nadel also said war with Iraq could have negative impacts on the already slumping U.S. economy. 

Berkeley’s proposed resolution continues a series of city objections to U.S. policy since Sept. 11, 2001. 

Last month, City Council passed a resolution criticizing the federal Patriot Act as an infringement of civil rights. Last October, council passed a resolution calling for a quick end to bombing in Afghanistan. 

Maio said she expects the latest resolution to win the support of her colleagues at the Oct. 8 City Council meeting.