West Australian meeting rejects war involvement
by Vic Williams Carman Lawrence MHR for Fremantle and Judith Watson, former Minister in a State Labor Government, organised an important meeting on peace issues in the park outside the Fremantle Town Hall on Saturday November 23. Marie, an Aboriginal woman, opened the meeting with a welcome to the area. Carmen Lawrence told the hundred people at the meeting that we don't want to be involved in the war on Iraq. It had been pointed out that civilians would be 80-90 per cent of the casualties. The war would be a danger to the whole of the Middle East and Israel could be involved. Wally Pritchard, WA Assistant Secretary of the Maritime Union of Australia and President of Unions WA said that seamen had taken decisive action against shipping material for the war in Vietnam, and would consider similar actions against a war on Iraq. He asked: "Why not have an inspection team go into Israel?" He warned that the sea-swap on US naval personnel would put Fremantle people in jeopardy by making Stirling and Fremantle a US naval base. The US and the State Labor Government had plans to do enough dredging to bring aircraft carriers into Cockburn sound and make it a permanent base. Speakers and groups such as FANG, the Fremantle Anti-Nuclear Group, expressed their opposition to war against Iraq.