- Here is Laurie's letter, by Laurie Dobson of Maine, written
for the peace movement. Please everyone pass this around discuss, endorse
and act- Send endorsements of the letter to Laurie lauriegdobson@ yahoo.com
and to Obama and to Congress. Thanks, Bruce Marshall brmas@yahoo.
- OPEN LETTER FROM THE PEACE MOVEMENT TO PRESIDENT OBAMA
ON HIS UPCOMING DECISION REGARDING THE AFGHAN WAR
- Dear Mr. President:
- According to press reports, you intend to decide between
November 7 and November 11 whether or not to send tens of thousands of
American soldiers to Afghanistan. We are writing in advance of that decision
to add our voice to those of Sen. Feingold, many House Democrats, and of
a clear majority of Americans in urging you not to escalate this war, but
rather to announce an immediate cease-fire followed by a withdrawal of
all US troops in the fastest way consistent with the safety of our forces.
We urge you to end the policy of using Predator drones to assassinate Pakistani
civilians on the territory of their own country, in defiance of all concepts
of international law. We also call upon you to cease all covert CIA and
Pentagon operations in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran.
- No vital American interest is at stake in Afghanistan.
Former Marine and State Department official Matthew Hoh is right: the US
and NATO forces in Afghanistan have come to be viewed as invaders and occupiers,
and the resistance they encounter has nothing to do with international
terrorism. This war is futile, and now doomed to failure. There is no military
solution to the problems that beset Afghanistan. Afghanistan and the rest
of this tragically war-torn region need a Marshall Plan of peaceful economic
development, through which some of the 15 million unemployed workers in
our own country could find productive jobs. We have no confidence in the
advice being given to you by military leaders like Gen. McChrystal, who
has been implicated in torture in Iraq.
- We supported your candidacy because we viewed you as
the best chance for ending the wars of the Bush era. We applauded your
rejection of the rhetoric of fear and division that was the stock in trade
of Bush and Cheney. We are alarmed by the way that rhetoric has crept into
your public pronouncements since your August address in Phoenix. Your decision
on Afghanistan will represent the decisive turning point of your presidency.
If you turn away from war, you will provide a profile in courage that will
solidify your support and open up a new perspective for progressive reforms
in our country. You will honor the spirit of John F. Kennedy, who was searching
for an exit strategy from the Vietnam war. If you opt for a wider war,
the resulting heavy casualties will destroy confidence in your leadership
among your own most devoted advocates. Hundreds of billions of dollars
will be poured down a rat hole, and will no longer be available for any
reform and renovation of American society, which will increasingly fall
behind the economic strength of other countries. Your domestic agenda will
be halted, in the same way your predecessor Lyndon B. Johnson was crippled
by the Vietnam war. Escalation of the Afghan war, in short, would be an
act of political suicide for you, and of national suicide for our country.
- We are keenly aware of the difficulties and animosities
you face, and we have long done everything possible to give your administration
the benefit of the doubt, even in the face of repeated disappointments.
But we now approach the moment of truth: will you be a great progressive
president, or will you prove too weak to turn away from the bankrupt policies
institutionalized and entrenched under Bush and Cheney. Therefore, we want
you to know our attitude before you decide on the proposed Afghan escalation.
If you choose to escalate, we will oppose this policy with all the energy
we possess. We will act to mobilize the largest possible anti-war demonstration
in Washington DC and other cities before the end of 2009, and continuously
thereafter. We will support anti-war candidates of any party in the 2010
elections. If you are still waging the Afghan war in 2011, we will be forced
to seriously consider backing an explicitly anti-war primary candidate
to challenge you during the Democratic primaries.
- We therefore respectfully urge you to act in the spirit
of your 2008 campaign the spirit of hope and change, neither of which
can survive the continuation or expansion of the hopeless Afghan war.
- Signed by the following anti-war organizations and peace
- Bruce Marshall
- brmas@yahoo. com
- A great letter, in my opinion. If appropriate please
disseminate. Harold Trainer
- I would like to endorse Laurie's letter. Prof. William
- Cynthia Papermaster, former Candidate for U.S. Congress,
- Carol Wolman, MD
- 2008 Green Candidate for Congress, CA District 1
- I would gladly sign this letter. Thanks, Amy Harlib