Walk In Their Shoes
CODEPINK Walk In Their Shoes
CODEPINK: Women for Peace will create a powerful visual representation of the deaths caused by the Iraq war at Peavey Plaza in downtown Minneapolis.
The “Walk in Their Shoes” installation acknowledges the desperate plight of the Iraqis, especially those who have lost their lives in this devastating war and occupation. A recent Johns Hopkins report (Nov 2006) revealed that over 655,000 Iraqis have died since the US invasion and polls show that the overwhelming majority of Iraqis want the US military to leave. An estimated 2.5 million Iraqis are internally displaced or have fled to other countries. About one million Iraqis have been killed since the U.S. occupation began. Over, 4,000 American soldiers have been killed and more than 30,000 seriously wounded.
The shoes help people to visualize the unspeakable pain and suffering this war has inflicted on the Iraqi people. They also serve to remind elected officials and voters of the consequences of voting to go to war, voting to fund war, voting to “stay the course”. Holocaust survivors throughout the world have displayed shoes to represent the hundreds of thousands of people killed in concentration camps during World War II. The Iraq war has so far cost the lives of 4,141 US soldiers and caused the injuries of more than 30,000 others (http://www.icasualties.org/oif/). The installation will move inside the Intermedia Arts Center after the convention and remain there until the Presidential election.
CODEPINK hopes this display will illustrate to politicians and Americans the immense devastation of this war, the tragedy of human loss and help convince them to vote against any extended action in the war and to avoid future wars through diplomacy. The nonprofit group has presented this memorial to more than 20 cities around the country. Thousands of people, including hundreds of delegates, will see the display at the Democratic and Republican National Conventions.
CODEPINK, founded in 2002, is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end the war in Iraq, stop new wars, and redirect our resources into health care, education and other life-affirming activities. We reject the Bush administration’s fear-based politics that justify violence, and instead call for policies based on compassion, kindness and a commitment to international law. With an emphasis on joy and humor, CODEPINK women and men seek to activate, amplify and inspire a community of peacemakers through creative campaigns and a commitment to non-violence.