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International Action Center - "Peace Activists" with a Secret Agenda
by Kevin Coogan
03 Dec 2001
An expose of the authoritarian politics behind the International Action Center and the ANSWER coalition.
The International Action Center:
"Peace Activists" with a Secret Agenda?
By Kevin Coogan
On September 29th, 2001, just a few weeks following the September 11th
terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, a large peace rally
was held in Washington, D.C., to oppose an American military response to the
attack. The main organizer of the D.C. rally, ANSWER (Act Now to Stop War &
End Racism), was officially established shortly after the 9/11 attack. The leading
force behind ANSWER's creation is the International Action Center (IAC), which
represents itself as a progressive organization devoted to peace, justice, and
human rights issues. The IAC's organizational clout is considerable: for the past
decade it has played a leading role in organizing protest demonstrations against
U.S. military actions against both Iraq and Serbia. After the September 11th attack,
the IAC decided to turn its long-organized planned protest against the
International Monetary Fund and World Bank gathering, scheduled for the 29th,
into an action opposing any use of U.S. military power in response to terrorism.
The IAC owes its current success to Ramsey Clark, a former Attorney General
during the Johnson Administration, who is listed on the IAC's website as its
founder. Clark's establishment credentials have caused many in the mass media to
accept the IAC's self-portrayal as a group of disinterested humanitarians appalled
by war and poverty who are working to turn American foreign policy towards a
more humane course. On its website the IAC says it was "Founded by Ramsey
Clark" and then describes its purpose: "Information, Activism, and Resistance to
U.S. Militarism, War, and Corporate Greed, Linking with Struggles Against Racism
and Oppression within the United States."