"No Peace, No Work," Mayday Longshore Strike Against the War





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Published on Jun 4, 2008

It was a moment without historical precedent, American workers striking against a war that their government is waging. On Mayday this year, the International Longshore & Warehouse Union (ILWU) shut down every port on the west coast of the United Stated--all 26 of them--in opposition to the US war against the people of Iraq. A few weeks back we reported on the struggle of Iraqi labor unions in the Basra area, who are fighting against the privatization of Iraqi ports and oil fields. As US missiles rained down on their houses, and the puppet government tried to arrest union leaders, they called for international solidarity and support from organized labor. The ILWU answered that cry bigtime. Now, on "Indymedia Presents" ----we bring you a report of the Mayday strike that completely shut down every port on the west coast for at least 8 hours. Longshoremen stayed off the job and in major port cities they marched, proud, in their union jackets, banners unfurled. In response, dock workers in Iraq shut down the port there for two hours. It was like a blinking signal light on a distant shore at night, acknowledging that the message of solidarity had been received.

The Seattle Times reported that "dozens" of dock workers protested in Seattle. In our report you can clearly see the demonstration is 5 lanes wide, stretching back past the focus of the camera. There were "dozens" just in the first row or two. PepperSpray was there to document this heroic moment. It was a bit of a cinematographer's dilemma: how do you show something like a stop work situation, where the story is "something's NOT happening." We arrived at the hall early and union members showed us where to get beautiful shots of the idle port. Later we captured the march, the music, the mood. We're proud of the ILWU, and it shows in this report.


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Public Access producers, community screeners, and IMCs (Independent Media Centers) are encouraged to screen or air "Indymedia Presents". To obtain the show on a regular basis, please contact us, Pepperspray Productions, at pepperspray@riseup.net.

"Indymedia Presents" is a 28 minute weekly cable public access program produced on behalf of the Seattle Independent Media Center (IMC) by PepperSpray Productions. In addition to SCAN Channel 77 in Seattle, "Indymedia Presents" also airs on channels in greater King County (Channel 23), Bainbridge Island (Channel 12), Port Townsend, WA (Channel 97 & 98), Olympia, WA (Channel 22), Vancouver, WA (Channel 11), Portland, OR (Channel 22 and a few others), Tucson, AZ (Channel 73), St Paul, MN (Channel 15), Minneapolis, MN (Channel 17), Fort Wayne, IN (Channel 57), Philadelphia, PA (Channels 54 & 62), Brooklyn, NY (BCAT Channels 34, & 67) and on New York City's Manhattan Neighborhood Network, (Channel 34).

Related Free Speech Websites:

Independent Media Center

Indymedia NewsReal

Free Speech TV:

Link TV

Democracy Now!

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