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San Francisco | Anti-War

May Day San Francisco 2008
by Stephania Oceankayak
Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM
May Day event in solidarity with the ILWU calling for Peace and the end of the War in Iraq.
A few pictures of the rally and the action in front of the Recruiting Station near Justin herman Plaza

Thursday May 1st 2008 was a tremendous day of action against the war.

The ILWU closed all the ports on the west side of the country, from California up thru Washington and Oregon.

In San Francisco, various peace groups and immigrant rights groups stood by in solidarity with the ILWU and marched from the Union Hall near Embarcadero down to Justin Herman Plaza, where a second rally took place.

Union leaders and various peace groups took to the stage blending their voices together to form a beautiful collage of the peace movement and the country 's mood in general.

Cindy Sheehan was there to lend her voice of support.
Veterans for Peace and CodePink were also among the groups represented.

Earlier in the day, a group of activists, including Toby from CodePink, went to the Oakland Docks to pursuade truckers to honor the general strike. Some truckers agreed to not deliver their loads, while others helped to create a work slowdown by delivering their loads up to half an hour late.

The docks themselves were virtually a ghost town, as can be seen on some of the shots taken by this writer's camera while crossing the bay on the ferry.
Even on the Ferry ride over, the sounds of "Solidarity Forever" could be heard echoing across the bay from the Ferry passengers.
As the rally wound down, a splinter group marched to the Recruiting office nearby and put a banner across the front of the door while speaking and chanting anti war slogans.
§The Ports were Empty
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

Ships sit idle in Oakland Port during the Genral Strike May 1 2008
§Our Soul Flying
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

On the way to the Genral Strike, Soul was seen flying on board the Ferry as we sang Solidarity forever while crossing the bay to join others in the Genral Strike and rally.
§At the Rally
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

An iranian woman at the rally had an emotional exchange on the safety of people in Iraq and Iran if the US pulls out.
§Zanne from CodePink Berkeley
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

CodePink from Oakland and Berkeley and Hayward came over to join in the General Strike
§As Always
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

As always The Police were there.
§Recruiting Station
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

A splinter group marched off after the rally, to gatheer in front of the recruiting offices near Justin Herman Plaza. Student activists spoke to those there on the dangers and lies of recruiters in the schools.
§Grim reminder
by Stephania Oceankayak Friday May 2nd, 2008 8:55 AM

A grim reminder of the General Strike in 1934 which resulted in ILWU members being targeted and killed by police action in San Francisco.

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Comrade
Friday May 2nd, 2008 12:47 PM
Nice symbolic gesture. But, where do we go from here?
Another May Day protest in '09? How exciting.
by !
Friday May 2nd, 2008 9:14 PM
The ILWU's one day labor strike for peace directly affected the profits of the entire capitalist class as the American economy is very dependent on the billions of dollars of goods shipped to and from the United States. A significant percentage of the war profits were also affected as the goods for the war against the people of Iraq and Afghanistan are mostly shipped from the West Coast ports. Above all, this milestone action has set a powerful action to the entire workingclass of what is to be done to put an end to war and the war economy, namely directly affect the profits of the war profiteers by withholding our labor. As the saying goes, when labor withdraws its hand, nothing moves. This message of what is to be done to stop the war profits and the power of class solidarity was carried out by those most directly affected by the blood for oil wars abroad and their detrimental effects on the economy at home. IN OTHER WORDS, THE WORKINGCLASS OF THE UNITED STATES NOW FINALLY REALIZES THAT THERE IS NO AMERICAN DREAM AND IT IS THROUGH LABOR ACTIONS THAT WE CAN PUT AN END TO THE PRIVATE PROFIT WAR ECONOMY. We have not seen such understanding in this country since the Great Depression of the 1930s. As the housing crisis worsens with thousands more foreclosures due to being unable to pay subprime loans, and as the state and federal budgets for all social services, education and medical care are cut, we can expect to see more labor solidarity actions nationwide including a national labor general strike, and the ILWU has set the example of what can be done and how to do it. This is a moment in history that we can all savor as it has taken the many struggles of the past 60 plus years to achieve this extraordinary milestone. To put it simply, this was a dream come true and I am certainly glad to be a witness to it. The struggle continues. History is with us; we shall win!