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Action Ideas

The important things:

Interested in coordinating an activity or event during the week surrounding the August 31st partial withdrawal of troops from Iraq? Here are several ideas to get you ready for action!

Please list your action on our national calendar.
See events here.
If you have questions or would like support organizing your action or contacting the press, please email


  • Organize a film showing: For only $5, you can get a copy of one of two riveting DVDs: War Made Easy or Iraq for Sale. See a full list of movies and documentaries about the Iraq occupation on our newly updated website. Consider hosting a film screening at a home, library, campus, independent movie theater, or even outdoors if you have access to a projector.

  • Host a house party: Invite friends, activists, and allies over to discuss the impact of the war, share stories, and talk about next steps for ensuring that all troops, contractors, and war funding comes home and ways to hold those accountable for leading us into the invasion of Iraq. Collaborate with groups that serve veterans' and military family members. Peace groups can bring a pie and vets' groups can bring the coffee! Connect the pie visual to the federal budget and talk about the need to bring our war dollars home. Purchase our Peace Pie Cookbook for delicious recipe ideas. Consider screening a film or reading excerpts from a book on the war. **You can also raise funds and donate them to Under the Hood Cafe, place for soldiers to gather, relax and speak freely about the wars and the military. Support services for soldiers include referrals for counseling, legal advice and information on GI rights.

  • Host a war criminal card party! At your war criminal card party you can spread the word about where the next war criminal is appearing, who made the latest attempted citizens arrest, and how to pass a city ordinance to promote executive accountability. Purchase your deck of War Criminal Cards here. Don't forget to eat! Host a dinner with food from the Middle East. Ask your friends to bring something along, so you don't need to cook all week. Set aside a few minutes before or after the meal to explain the latest on the troop withdrawal and the ongoing occupations.

  • Bring the bloody reality and cost of war to your Congressperson: Stage an action with bloody hands to tell Congress that by continuing to fund war the blood of the dead is on their hands. Congress is in recess and your rep may be home in district August 9 - September 12. You can join Progressive Democrats of America's monthly Brown Bag Lunch effort and remind your Congressperson about what the recently passed $37 billion more for occupying Afghanistan will create - more destruction and death. Find a vigil or create your own. Morning rush hour is a particularly good time for a picket -- lots of passing cars. When your picket is over, take one of your signs up to your Congressperson's office and ask the staff to give it to him/her as a message from constituents. Before you visit your congressperson, make sure you know how s/he voted on the recent supplemental spending bill.

  • Freeway Banner Hang: Find a visible freeway over pass or foot bridge and hang a large banner over it. You may want to consider slogans like "Bring Our War $ Home Too!" or "Bring Home All the Troops!" or "Hold Bush/Cheney/Rice/Rumsfeld Accountable".

  • Teach-In: Activists in Washington, DC are coordinating a teach-in on August 29th which will feature speakers on topics such as "Are we really leaving - what's left behind?" and "Is life for Iraq better?" and "The cost of war" and "Accountability". You can host a teach-in in your community - reach out to college professors, refugees or people who work with refugees, members of Military Families Speak Out or Iraq Veterans Against the War, longtime activists, etc. Consider hosting your teach-in at a library, school, or other public place threatened or already impacted by budget cuts.

  • Parade, March, or Rally: You can coordinate a parade or march to highlight the cost of war, the ongoing occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, to cheer for troops coming home and advocate for full veterans benefits, and to call for accountability and prosecution of those decision makers in the former Bush administration. Invite vets and other ally groups to each put together a float representing the reality of coming home from Iraq -- recession, foreclosures, lack of jobs, looming redeployment to Afghanistan. Make signs saying "No Soldier Left Behind" emphasizing that 50,000 troops and tens of thousands of mercenaries are still in Iraq or "Arrest Bush & Co." for leading us into the illegal invasion. Consider marching across a bridge in your city, to symbolize building bridges between cultures rather than bombing them. Don't forget a banner and a camera! Find instructions on how to make a banner here.

  • Are you in Detroit or DC? Join the Jobs, Justice and Peace march! The Rainbow PUSH Coalition and the United Auto Workers (UAW) have invited peace organizations to endorse and participate in a campaign for Jobs, Justice, and Peace. On August 28, 2010, in Detroit, the coalition will march on the anniversary of that day in 1963 when Walter Reuther, president of UAW, Martin Luther King, Jr., and other civil rights leaders joined with hundreds of thousands of Americans for the March on Washington. You can also join the August 28 Reclaim the Dream Rally and March in DC called by Rev. Al Sharpton and the National Action Network to begin at 11 a.m.. at Dunbar High School, 1301 New Jersey Avenue Northwest, Washington, DC. Bring the "Bring all troops and war $ home" message to these rallies and call for "Money for Jobs and Education, not for Wars and Occupation!"

  • Candlelight vigil: Candles make a subtle and beautiful display. Choose a public location (Congressional office, Federal Building, school, library, park -- you know your community) and read the names of troops who have been killed in the occupation and/or our statement.

  • Host a press conference: Use any of the ideas or themes on this page to host a press event, or stage a straight-forward press conference with key speakers and organizations represented.

  • Art Installation: Provide art supplies and invite your participants to create art. If you have time and support, perhaps on a piece of land post graves with names of the dead on each one, or a name and photo (if found) of the dead mounted in an exhibition in a line that people walk through. Create a public mural or convene a group of artists to do a chalk sidewalk mural in a public place.

  • Don't forget those who created this debacle! Thus far the U.S. has failed to prosecute anyone up the chain of command for abuses that have occurred in the highest offices of the United States of America. That is why CODEPINK is modeling justice (with a splash of pink) by calling for the Citizen's Arrest of Bush Administration war criminals: Rove, Rumsfeld, Cheney, Rice and others. As we stand on the shoulders of the peace and social justice activists who came before us, we know that change will not occur unless citizens stand up for their rights under the law. Make calls to the chairs of the judiciary committee: Patrick Leahy and John Conyers; the White House and Attorney General Holder at the Department of Justice and Congress or deliver bloody hand images to your congressional leader.