Some Evanston residents demonstrated this noon at the Chicago office of U.S. Rep Jan Schakowsky — urging her to vote against President Obama’s plan to bomb Syria in response to the reported use of chemical weapons by the government there.

Demonstrators outside Schakowsky’s office (Photo by Dickelle Fonda).

Some Evanston residents demonstrated this noon at the Chicago office of U.S. Rep Jan Schakowsky — urging her to vote against President Obama’s plan to bomb Syria in response to the reported use of chemical weapons by the government there.

Schakowsky joined dozens of other members of Congress last week in signing a letter urging Obama to seek congressional approval for any action against Syria.

But yesterday her husband, political consultant Robert Creamer, posted to Huffington Post a “progressive case” for authorizing military action.

Local peace activists are promoting an online petition against military intervention.

Dickelle Fonda, one of six activists who met with Schakowsky at her office today said the congresswoman told them response from her constituents is coming in about 20 to 1 against authorizing military action.

But Fonda said Schakowsky told them that despite the opposition she is “gettable” for the president’s proposal and plans to listen to the debate after returning to Washington before deciding how to vote.

Update 9/4/13 3:11 p.m.: Schakowsky, in an interview today with Greg Hinz of Chicago Business, brought up both the Holocaust and past genocide in Rwanda. “There is a Jewish piece of this to me: the world standing by silently as Jews were gassed. That is on my mind, but I want to know how this (possible attack) will change the situation and whether it truly will be limited.”

“The consequences of doing nothing can be severe,” she added. “As someone who was a founder of the Out of Iraq Caucus and who is very skeptical of using military force, I just think this is a different situation. I wish we had done something about Rwanda.”

What do you think? Vote in our online poll …

Should the U.S. bomb Syria over chemical weapons use?

Related story

Latest ‘Crisis in Syria’ coverage from the New York Times.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

Join the Conversation


  1. Schakowsky is a war hawk

    Schakowsky votes in the interest of AIPAC everytime. 

    Notice how Schakowsky never mentioned that Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons that killed at least 50,000 of his own people and many more in the Iraq-Iran war.  

    Schakowsky voted YES on an emergency $78 billion for war in Iraq & Afghanistan (2003)

    She voted NO on banning armed forces in Libya without Congressional approval. (Jun 2011)

    Schakowsky also voted NO on a bill in 1999 that would remove U.S. troops from Clinton's war – the Kosovo conflict  – and she voted YES to fund Americans troops involved in the Kosovo conflict. Did the Serbs use chemical weapons? Nope.

    Why do people keep voting for Democrat Schakowsky?

    1. Joel and Jan

      Al asks:

      "Schakowsky votes in the interest of AIPAC everytime. Why do people keep voting for Democrat Schakowsky?"

      Jan's opponent in 2010, Joel Pollak, was an even bigger neocon AIPAC hawk. He ran an absurd campaign that was primarily centered on accusing Jan of not being sufficiently pro-Israel. I never heard of "J-Street" before Joel Pollak came along and made it the focus of his campaign.

  2. Attacking Syria

    I hope both houses of Congress will vote overwhelmingly against attacking Syria.  In Afghanistan 16,700 – 19,000 civilians have been killed by war-related violence as of February 2013.  Our war in Iraq killed a minimum of 100,000 civilians, just by violence alone, by the time we officially left in 2011.  (These statistics are from the Costs of War Project and Iraq Body Count.  The Lancet, the leading British medical journal, published a study in June 2006 reckoning total Iraqi civilian war-related deaths at over 654,000.)  I don't want us killing any more people.

  3. Syria

    We have for the 1st time ever the means to quickly voice our collective opinions regarding the direction the u.s. should take in all matters political, social, economic. It is wonderful to see so many people taking advantage of the internet medium to voice their opinions . 

    And it is especially good to see and hear so many people in Evanston (and elswhere) saying loud and clear, "We do not want to drop bombs on Syria."

    I hope this is only the beginnings of a movement which might be called "everyone all at once." "Everyone all at once", say no to war, to unjustified intervention, to supporting our favorite "partners", in the Middle East when it serves their national interest, blood feuds, religion, historical greviences, and political whims.

    Stay informed, study the context and history before voting.  always ask who it is that profits from the choices we as a country are told we should make. case in point, Syria. what countries will profit from our intervention? Make your position known.


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