The Worker

Report from the United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) Conference in Saint Paul, MN

SAINT PAUL, MN – The United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) held its national conference in Saint Paul, Minnesota from April 5th to April 7th, 2024.

The weekend kicked off with an introduction by UNAC Coordinator Joe Lombardo. His opening speech described the current escalations in world politics conditions which necessitated the conference.

After introductions, the first panel took place in which speakers talked about some of the wins of the Free Palestine movement in the Twin Cities since the beginning of the ongoing genocide in the Gaza Strip. Speakers on the panel talked about the need to leverage politicians to support ceasefire resolutions in Minneapolis, as well as in the Saint Paul City Council. The speakers also described how a popular movement at the local level could be an effective strategy for anti-war organizing in the United States. 

The second day included workshops that covered a variety of different topics. Speakers on panels spoke about the Free Palestine movement, the ongoing NATO proxy war in Ukraine, the Pivot to Asia now endorsed by the US ruling class, and the ongoing looming threat of a war with China over Taiwan. Additional topics included how sanctions kill populations of people in the Global South under the boot of US Imperialism, how the Stop Cop City movement is directly tied to the fight against the US Empire, and the effects pollution from war has on the degradation of the environment as the leading cause of climate change. 

Present at the conference were a wide variety of different organizations active in the Peace Movement. These included the Party of Communists USA (PCUSA), Workers World Party, The Black Alliance for Peace, Friends of the Congo, US China Solidarity Network, The Coalition for Civil Freedoms, the People’s Democracy Party of South Korea, Assange Defense, and more.

On the last day, the final round of workshops took place, followed by the closing ceremony where the attendees established Points of Unity and closing speeches were given.

One of the closing speeches was given by the Western Sahara ambassador to the United Nations, introduced by PCUSA International Secretary Christopher Helali. The ambassador gave his speech to UNAC explaining the role that the US and Israel played in denying the right of national self-determination to the people of Western Sahara in their struggle against Morocco. He drew parallels between their struggle and what is going on in Palestine.

The ceremony then closed, marking a successful weekend for the United National Antiwar Coalition. 

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