- js reader version
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
by Horst Schmitthenner
Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2007 at 11:05 AM
After 1 million Iraqi deaths and a war cost between and .3 trillion, the horror and scourge of war must end. This speech by a German union leader could give us courage in resisting the irrationality of war and the confusion of offense and defense.
“WE WANT DISARMAMENT, NOT SOCIAL CUTS”
By Horst Schmitthenner
[Horst Schmitthenner is a German union leader with IG Metal. His address is translated from the German in “Sand im Getriebe,” October 10, 2007 on the World Wide Web, http://www.attac.de.]
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
We demonstrate here because we want the German army out of Afghanistan and an end to the foreign interventions of the German army.
People cannot be pacified with weapons of war. Wars solve no problems. Rather they are a reason for the increasing violence in the world.
We demonstrate here because we want to stop the reorganization of the German army from pure national defense to an intervention troop. The German army is not in Afghanistan because it believes it can bring peace and democracy to the land. I believe it will remain there to exercise its new practical function as an offensive army enforcing German interests.
We demonstrate here because we urgently need the money for social concerns instead of reorganizing the German army: for a labor market reform that creates jobs. Hartz IV must end because it is an unreasonable demand for the unemployed and is an exaction for the wage- and working conditions of employees. It pulls down the whole wage structure. 400 euro jobs and combined wages are not additional but substitutes for work on a wage scale that pays into social security.
Instead of money for armament, we should redevelop unemployment insurance into a caring institution. Paying benefits for only 12 months intensifies the insecurity of employees and the power of capital.
Whoever with a termination has the chance of landing in Hartz IV after 12 months, whoever must fight for his apartment and accept any work has more problems speaking his mind in the factory and championing employee rights than some one with the prospect of long benefits from AL)-insurance who is not subject to the exaction criteria of Hartz IV.
Instead of investing in armaments and reorganization of the German army, the money could be used in building a public jobs sector. There is enough to do in the infrastructure, in education, care of children, youth and seniors and creating meaningful social work for the many unemployed in job conditions that pay on a wage scale and contribute to social security.
Let us use the money to raise pensions to a level that ensures a decent standard of living. It is a scandal that a 65-year old after 45 insured years and average income will receive 750 euro a month in pensions after 2030. In the future, one will have to pay contributions for 39 years to receive a pension equal to income support. In this way, poverty will become a mass phenomenon and the division of society will deepen.
For a life in peace, every euro invested socially will be used more successfully than for military engagements.
We demonstrate because we want to stop the political class from arrogantly deciding what they want without regard to the interests and desires of the people. A large majority of the population oppose the military deployment in Afghanistan and elsewhere in the world.
As with health care reform, pension reform and Hartz IV, the political class is not interested in us and says they do what they want to do.
We stand here to say no.
No government in the long run can govern against the majority in society.
We do not want your policy; we want disarmament, not social cuts.
We want an end to interventions of the German army abroad. We want to make peace without weapons.
Given the screening of the political class, we need a long breath for introducing a change of policy.
We will go forward, not you. The founding of a new leftist party is evidence of this as well as the majorities in society who reject your policy and urge another policy.
You will not be rid of us. The demonstration today is not the end of our involvement.
We will continue. We will convince members of parliament so there will not be a majority for extending the German army’s mandate in Afghanistan.
You can be certain of this.
Report this post as:
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
||Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2007 at 1:10 PM
Change Links September 2018 posted
More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre
Site Outage Friday
Change Links August 2018
Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land
More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke
Change Links 2018 July posted
More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena
"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena
Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles
Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California
Change Links June 2018 posted
The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years
Unity Archive Project
Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi
CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police
Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies
California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings)
Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico
Change Links May 2018
Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed
GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE
lausd whistle blower
Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images
UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light
Change Links April 2018
More Local News...
Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement
Creative Destruction Hack Diamonds Windows/iOS/Android - Creative Destruction Generator
The Dictatorship of Corporations
18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting
Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue
Creative Destruction Hack Mod Generator
Shopping du bashing
After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again
“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen
Probabilités de fin d'humanité
Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW
Propagande de virus, virus de propagande
Steer clear of work morality!
Sweatshop Lodge Ceremony Continues in US Fed Prisons Led by Inmates
Paraphysique de l'origami
The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally!
August 2018 Honduras Coup update
Du réussissement putréfié
Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges
Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts
Paraphysique de contextualité
Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism
Ex-voto de réification
Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh
Paraphysique d'exploitation occultation
Ryan Zinke Is Charging Taxpayers For A Trophy Hunters' Council
More Breaking News...