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Stirring Opening Night at LA's People's Convention

by people's convention Friday, Aug. 11, 2000 at 4:52 PM

Rousing kick-off to event which highlights ongoing damaging U.S. policies, continues through Saturday. Group joins in Sunday march for Mumia.

The opening night at Peoples' Convention Los Angeles

2000 featured moving and stimulating speeches and songs by a wide variety of local activists for international solidarity.

In Belmont High School auditorium, colorfully decorated

with anti-imperialist murals courtesy of the Alliance of

Filipino Immigrants and Advocates, a diverse audience listened attentively and responded with thunderous applause for an emotional and information packed evening.

Videotapes are available from JusticeVision. Contact

Ralph Cole at DemocracyU@aol.com or 213-747-6345.

The session was also recorded by Pacifica Radio


Ross Altman tickled the audience by singing a parody of

Bush and Gore. Elena Montefiero sang in both Spanish

and English, and Maria Guardado delivered a

heart-breaking poem about disappeared children in El Salvador. We were all absolutely riveted by the acapella songweaving of Filipina activist Akilina Seriano.

We paused in remembrance of the atomic destruction of

Nagasaki 55 years ago. Overviews of U.S. military and

foreign policy were provided by Joe Maizlish of the War

Resisters League (who did his own Spanish interpreting)

and Richard Becker of International Action Center.

Other speakers primarily focused on the devastating effects of U.S. policies on particular people: Nyma Ardalan on the

Kurdish struggle for a homeland; Linda Tubach and Bob

McCloskey on the Iraqi embargo; Prof. Eugene Ruyle

on the development of China trade policies; and a

rousing speech by Don White on the gallant people of El


Be sure to join us tomorrow from 6pm to 10pm for a panel

on Los Angeles Environmental Problems and Solutions and

a debate among independent Presidential candidates.

On Friday, Peoples' Convention will meet from 4pm until

midnight, and on Saturday we will have workshops and

panels from 9am and an evening of resolutions and plans

for future working unity. Music, poetry and comedy will

be interspersed throughout the Peoples' Convention.


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