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SF Forum-The Middle East Rebellions, US Imperialism and the Working Class

Sunday, April 17, 2011
3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Event Type:
Labor Video Project
Location Details:
522 Valencia St./16th St.
San Francisco, CA

4/17 SF Forum-The Middle East Rebellions, US Imperialism and the Working Class

The Middle East Rebellions, US Imperialism and the Working Class

Public Forum & Discussion
The Middle East Rebellions, US Imperialism and the Working Class

Sunday April 17, 2011 3:00 PM
522 Valencia St/16th St
San Francisco, CA

Donation Requested

The US is now engaged in a full scale military intervention and war in Libya and has operations throughout Africa and the Middles East. This forum will look at the role of the US in the Middle East and the growing working class rebellions that are taking place there. It will also look at what relationship the US trade union movement should have with the working class of the region.

Initial Speakers:
Ralph Schoenman, Journalist, Member UAW 1981 on The US, The Middle East And The Working Class
What role is the US and it's allies in the Middle East playing and what are the struggles of the working class
Mehmet Bayram, Writer on Fundamentalism, Turkey and the US
How is fundamentalism being supporting by the US government in Turkey and how has this affected the Turkish struggle and working class.

Sponsored by International Discussion Group IDG
Labor Video Project
For Information contact (415)282-1908


Whereas on March 14, 2011 the San Francisco Labor Council adopted a Resolution
in which it was resolved that the SFLC “declares its full solidarity and support for the
General Strike action taken by the General Federation of Workers Trade Unions of
Bahrain.”(GFBTU); and

Whereas on that date the San Francisco Labor Council condemned the invasion of
Bahrain by Saudi Arabian and Gulf Cooporation Council (GCC) forces; and

Whereas the GFBTU, representing sixty organizations and seventy trade unions, with
close to 100% support from membership, shut down Aluminium Bahrain (ALBA),
Bahrain Petroleum Company (BAPCO), Bahrain Aviation and all major companies in
protest against the disappearance of workers, daily torture and killing of workers and
peaceful demonstrators and the use of chemical weapons, attack helicopters and
automatic weapons on civilians in their homes, workplaces and villages throughout
Bahrain; and

Whereas GFBTU leaders ended the strike on March 22, 2011 in response to
governmental assurances that random killing, wounding and disappearance of
workers, their families and the general population would cease; and

Whereas as soon as the General Strike was ended, participating workers and their
families were attacked, detained and banned from employment; and

Whereas GFBTU leaders Karim Radhi and General Secretary Salman Jaffar al
Mahfoodh appealed to trade unions and working people in every country to defend
the lives and livelihoods of Bahrain’s workers and to defend the people of Bahrain
against ruthless and murderous repression; and

Whereas the removal and disappearance of workers was extended to Batelco, APM
terminals and the University of Bahrain exceeding 1,380, 800 and 453 workers in
three locations; and

Whereas on April 5, Solidarity Center, on behalf of the AFL-CIO, declared that it “is
calling for an immediate end to threats, firing, and arrests of rights activists and
workers in Bahrain, where the government has imposed a harsh and brutal crackdown
upon dissent;” and

Whereas Solidarity Center denounced further the “shooting and killing of protesters,
removing the wounded from hospitals, raiding homes and offices” and “detaining
hundreds of protesters, activists and opposition leaders;” and

Whereas Solidarity Center appealed further on behalf of “five leaders of the Bahraini
Teachers’ Federation and of Rulla al Saffar, President of the Bahrain Nursing
Society” who were detained and have not been seen; and

Whereas Nancy Mills, Solidarity Center Interim Executive Director, declared that “Bahrain is in
clear violation of its international commitments to respect basic human and labor rights. The
repression must end;” and

Whereas the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), representing 175 million workers
and 305 member organizations in 151 countries was joined by Global Union Federations and
National Affiliates across the world in declaring “our total and unwavering support and solidarity
with the trade union movement of Bahrain;” and

Whereas the ITUC was joined by the Trades Union Council of Great Britain which called upon
its membership for donations through the TUC AID Solidarity Appeal for the GFBTU and the
working people of Bahrain; and

Whereas the International Federation of Chemical, Energy, Mine and General Workers
condemned the firing from their jobs of all Executive Board members of the GFBTU, denounced
the seizure of GFBTU headquarters by security forces and the demand by security forces that
General Secretary Jaffar Salman al Mahfoodh place himself in security custody; and

Whereas workers at Alba were stopped from entering the building and were detained, doctors and
nurses at Salmaniya Medical Complex were sacked and the union representing doctors and nurses
in Bahrain was disbanded by Bahrain’s Health Ministry; and

Whereas Bahrain Telecommunications, Gulf Air, Bahrain Airport Services and APM Terminals
Bahrain fired all striking workers permanently, the Education Ministry disbanded the teachers’
union and arrested its President Mahdi Abu Deeb; and

Whereas Human Rights Watch, the United Nations Human Rights Commissioner and Amnesty
International have condemned the disappearance and death of doctors, surgeons and medical
personnel and of wounded patients from hospitals and clinics; and

Whereas Irish Times reporter Finian Cunningham has documented “torture, chemical warfare,
including the use of nerve gas and organ theft” wherein “as many as 17 bodies of victims released
from military custody showed signs of deep surgery from the neck to the abdomen” including
“Abdul Razal al Hujairi and fifteen year old Sayed Ahmed Saeed Shams” revealing “organ theft
requiring “international independent inquiry;” and

Whereas this barbarous repression has unfolded less than three-quarters of a mile from the Fifth
Fleet and U.S. command headquarters stationed in Bahrain and, in the words of reporter Finian
Cunningham, “clear evidence of multiple violations under international law” is unfolding “only
kilometers away from thousands of U.S. military personnel;” and

Whereas on March 14, 2011 the San Francisco Labor Council by Resolution further resolved
“that Bahrain is the headquarters of the U.S. Fifth Fleet and of military intelligence in the region
and condemns the role of the government of the United States in the subjugation and brutalization
of the people of Bahrain;” and

Whereas the International Labor Organization in Geneva has condemned the collective firing of
striking workers in Bahrain and announced it will send a high-level delegation as soon as possible
to meet the authorities in Manama;”

Therefore be it Resolved that the San Francisco Labor Council joins the trade union movement
and working people across the world in pledging its unstinting solidarity with the GFBTU, the
working class and the people of Bahrain; and

Be it Further Resolved that the San Francisco Labor Council calls upon the government of the
United States to condemn these acts and demand an immediate end to the criminal invasion of
Bahrain by Saudi Arabia and the GCC troops, and that the U.S. government denounce the use of
U.S. F 16 attack aircraft, Cobra helicopters, U.S. weaponry, and U.S. supplied chemical and
nerve gas on civilians and villages throughout Bahrain; and

Be it Finally Resolved that the San Francisco Labor Council joins Human Rights officials and
activists from many countries in calling for an international investigation and adjudication of
crimes against humanity committed by foreign and domestic forces of repression, finding
culpable any government that has provided forces of repression in Bahrain with political and
military support.

adopted by the San Francisco Labor Council on April 11, 2011.
Added to the calendar on Thu, Apr 14, 2011 12:24PM
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