The Coalition Against NATO/G8 War and Poverty Agenda (CANG8) and Occupy Chicago are organizing a democratic counter-summit in opposition to NATO and the G8. The event will host a wide range of workshop presenters to help educate our communities about war and poverty, mobilize for radical democracy, and present alternative visions of the future in a world without NATO/G8.
"The NATO summit was brought to our city at enormous inconvenience to many thousands, with no debate about whether it should be here, let alone any debate about how NATO and its war policies destroy many thousands of lives," says Andy Thayer of CANG8. "The purpose of the People's Summit is to kick-start this debate that Mayor Emanuel and President Obama have refused to engage in."
Keynote speakers for the event will be Malalai Joya, who is a former Afghan member of Parliament and internationally renowned opponent of NATO's occupation of Afghanistan, and Rainer Braun, a member of the International Coordinating Committee of the European No to NATO network. Other speakers will include Kathy Kelly, Voices for Creative Nonviolence; death row prisoner Mumia Abu Jamal via speakerphone; Malik Mujahid, Muslim Peace Coalition; Medea Benjamin, Code Pink; and Col. Ann Wright (ret.), antiwar activist.
"This May, NATO will be hijacking Chicago, holding a meeting for its 'band of hostile brothers,'" says Eric Ruder, an organizer of the People's Summit. "As the military leaders who protect the interests of the global 1% gather behind closed doors, CANG8 and Occupy Chicago will be hosting a radically democratic meeting to discuss our visions of a better future, and how we can become the change that we want to see in this world."
Organizers are calling for workshop submissions, asking participants to contribute their expertise and experience with workshops designed to advance knowledge crucial to realizing the vision of a better world, politically, economically, culturally, and every way in between. Submissions are due to firstname.lastname@example.org by April 15 for a spot in the May 12 and 13 conference. For more information on submitting workshops, see: http://cang8.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/call-for-workshop-submissions-for-peoples-summit.pdf