TUCSON – Over 40 Arizona organizations have answered a call from the Tucson Peace Action Coalition to cosponsor a massive peace march and rally in Tucson on Jan. 18. The action is demanding “No attack on Iraq, and that the resources be spent, instead, for education, health care and our ailing environment.”

Action organizers have noted widespread disgust with the Bush administration’s plans to launch an attack on Iraq. A plea for money to place a full-page anti-war ad in the Jan. 12 Arizona Star has brought in a avalanche of support. Hundreds of Arizonans sent in checks, many with notes thanking organizers for their leadership in mobilizing the community.

The action will commence at 10 a.m. at the University of Arizona’s main gate and will include a march along Speedway Blvd. to De Anza Park on Speedway and Stone Ave. At the park organizers are planning a massive rally with speeches, music, theater, food and jugglers.

Organizers in Phoenix have promised at least one busload of supporters and car pools are being organized to bring peace supporters in from Bisbee, Tubac and Green Valley.

This action follows a similar protest last Oct. 19 that saw 2,000 Tucsonans rally for peace in the largest anti-war action in Arizona since the Viet Nam era. Organizers expect the Jan. 18 march and rally to be even bigger.

Besides the large number of traditional peace groups sponsors include Jobs with Justice, the National Organization for Women, Coalicion de Derechos Humanos, Salt of the Earth Labor College, the Communist Party USA and several student organizations.

The author can be reached at stelnik@webtv.net