Broad support for the World Socialist Web Site at Washington demonstration

22 April 2002

The Socialist Equality Party intervened at the April 20 demonstration in Washington against US militarism and Israeli aggression, fighting for a socialist and internationalist program against war and state repression.

Members of the SEP and supporters of the World Socialist Web Site distributed nearly 10,000 copies of a statement entitled “A socialist strategy to oppose war and defend democratic rights,” which underscored the necessity to base the struggle against imperialism on the building of a new political movement of the international working class directed against the profit system.

“Militarism and repression are the inevitable products of a social system based on the exploitation of the vast majority—those who work and produce the wealth of society—by a privileged minority—those who monopolize the means of production and subordinate social needs to private gain,” the statement said. It continued: “There is an organic connection between military violence and state repression and the widening economic chasm between capitalist and worker that characterizes the profit system all over the globe.”

Marchers crowded around SEP/WSWS tables at the beginning and end of the march to discuss the party’s perspectives, purchasing hundreds of dollars in literature and contributing generously to the web site. Among those participating in the demonstration were people from throughout the United States who described themselves as regular readers of the WSWS and credited the site with playing a formative role in own their political development.

Akilano, a student from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, has been reading the WSWS for two years. “I really like the site, not just in regards to taking the most objective position on international and domestic news, but because you take a position from an international standpoint,” he said. “You are the only political tendency that has not sold out. Your program is based on the political interests of the working class, but you do not appeal to workers just on the basis of their immediate self-interest.”

Ron, also from Philadelphia, began reading the WSWS eight months ago. “I go there, in part, because the site is oriented to a political framework that I am very much in agreement with,” he said. “The news is written with an international approach. It is more inclusive of facts from different sources, and the facts support the arguments that are being made. I have been looking for alternative sources of information, but they’re hard to find, and your site is the only place where I have found it.”

Deborah, who came to the demonstration from Connecticut, donated $20 to the site after seeing the WSWS table. “It’s great to read your site, because it made me realize that I was not alone in disliking what the Bush administration is doing,” she said. She added that she frequently forwarded material from the WSWS to other people to read.

Scores of others approached the tables to identify themselves as readers of the web site and to praise its political content. “I just want you to know that I think you have an excellent staff of writers and to keep up the good work,” one student said. Another demonstrator, a professional web designer, said that he had been reading the site for nearly a year. “It’s the best material I’ve seen anywhere,” he said, offering to help in any future redesign of the site.