Have we moved on?

What’s happened to Moveon.org? According to Norman Solomon, the organisation has lost its bite. He claims that the powers behind the group are hesitant to support the growing grassroots campaign to pressure the Bush administration in bringing troops home from Iraq.

“Part of the problem is MoveOn’s routine fuzziness about the war – and the way that the group is inclined to water down the messages of antiwar activism, much of which is not connected to the organization.

“Consider how the MoveOn website summarized the [Cindy Sheehan] vigils: “Last night, tens of thousands of supporters gathered at 1,625 vigils to acknowledge the sacrifices made by Cindy Sheehan, her son Casey and the more than 1,800 brave American men and women who have given their lives in Iraq – and their moms and families.” Such a gloss excludes a key reason why many people participated in the vigils: They wanted to express clear opposition to any further U.S. involvement in the war.

“Despite its high-profile role in the vigils this week, MoveOn is still not giving a high priority to addressing the Iraq war in its ongoing work. When I went to the MoveOn website today and looked at its roster of “Current Campaigns,” just a single item on the list was focused on Iraq — and that one, from June, involved “demanding that Bush address the evidence in the ‘Downing Street Memo.'”

Australia’s equivalent, Get Up!, may have made an initial media splash, but its effectiveness remains to be tested. How willing is it to openly challenge ALP policy, especially on foreign policy?

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