Filed under Political
Statement from the ANSWER Coalition
on the March 17-18 Global Days of Action
Make an end of the year tax-deductible donation
We need to raise $50,000 in the next weeks for the March on the Pentagon. We must pay to reserve buses, print hundreds of thousands of leaflets, stickers, and posters, pay for stage, sound, and other logistical expenses.
Time is running out to make an end of the year tax-deductible donation. To make a donation copy & paste this address into your browser:
The people of the United States want an end to the war in Iraq. The elections in November were a clear repudiation of the Bush administration’s war of aggression. The new Congress, however, has no intention of ending the war. Bush and the Pentagon generals are determined to prolong the war. Tens of thousands of more troops will be sent to Iraq. We are building a massive antiwar movement on the national and local level. Only the action of the people will stop the war.
We are returning to the Pentagon because the Iraq war has resulted in more than 655,000 Iraqi deaths (Lancet), on top of more than 1 million killed by sanctions between 1990-2003. This is genocide.
We are returning to the Pentagon because U.S. military deaths has exceeded 3,000. But that doesn’t begin to tell the story. There have been 21,921 wounded as of Nov. 30 and another 17,835 evacuated due to serious injury or illness as of Sept. 30, 2005 when the Pentagon stopped releasing these statistics.
We are returning to the Pentagon because it is U.S. missiles and bombs, including hundreds of thousands of cluster bombs that have been sent to Israel to kill and maim the people of Palestine and Lebanon. These weapons are a war crime. The estimate is that between 2 million and 3 million cluster bomblets were dropped on Lebanon, and more than a million remain unexploded — posing a danger to civilians for years to come. The war in Iraq is one front in the U.S. plan for domination of the Middle East. Colonial occupation is a crime whether it be in Iraq or Palestine or Lebanon.
The Global Military Machine
We are returning to the Pentagon because it maintains 714 military bases in 130 countries to extend the influence of US transnational corporations, oil giants and banks. The slogan of national security and the war on terror stands exposed as a pretext for a global empire enforced by military might and limitless violence.
While the focus of the recent years has been to use military power and violence against the Arab people, the Pentagon has been targeting peoples and nations all over the world. U.S. troops occupy South Korea. U.S. nuclear weapons target North Korea. Interventionist actions are already taking place in the Philippines, and are planned against Cuba, Venezuela, and throughout South and Central Asia.
The Warfare State: Spying, Surveillance, Secret Prisons and Torture Facilities
We are returning to the Pentagon to demand the immediate closure of Guantánamo and all other torture facilities. The grotesque revelations of torture and abuse in Abu Ghraib were the tip of the iceberg. Punishing a few rank and file soldiers and counting on the mass media to tire of the story, the Pentagon has tried to conceal the reality that it engages in arbitrary detention and torture of those it identifies as “enemies.”
We are returning to the Pentagon to demand an end to the surveillance and other spy programs conducted against the people of this country by the Pentagon and other agencies.
Militarism: The Social Costs of the Warfare State
We are returning to the Pentagon because the military budget of this country is a dagger in the heart of programs that meet peoples’ needs. More than 47 million people in the U.S. are without health care coverage and one out of every four children is born into extreme poverty. Fifty percent of all bankruptcies in the last year were filed by people who couldn’t pay their hospital and doctor’s bills. Factories are closing and whole communities and neighborhoods are being turned into ghost towns. Skyrocketing tuition is and will continue to make the dream of a college education harder to realize for working class youth. In the last year, Bush and Congress cut money for education, food aid and veterans’ benefits while the Senate voted almost unanimously to rubber stamp the new “war” budget of $590 billion (the official budget number of $443 billion conceals at least $150 billion in expenditures.)
We are returning to the Pentagon to challenge the system that is addicted to war and global domination. The Iraq war is a criminal endeavor based on lies. It was always about conquering the entire Middle East with its vast repositories of oil. While the Iraq war has been an absolute catastrophe for the entire people of Iraq and for tens of thousands of U.S. soldiers, it must be remembered that many U.S. corporations are benefiting. They are the recipients of new Pentagon orders for weapons, supplies and contracts. The Iraq war costs approximately $279 million each day. That breaks down to more than $11 million every hour of every day of the year. The total cost of the Iraq war will be $2 trillion, according to the Iraq Study Group report.
Unless the people act now, the human and economic costs of the war will only increase. Let’s unite and stand together at the Pentagon on March 17.
i too am disgusted with the situation in iraq and the president’s policies. however, this group is marching on the incorrect building. the march should be against the white house: the president, the vice president and the secretary of state, not the military. the military is a tool being used by the president, the military goes where they are told to go, not where they wish to go.
here’s a few links for you Ann to check out…
they have been active from the beginning and very organized…based in NY. endorsed by Cindy Sheehan, mimi kennedy, susan serandon and other well known activists.
DVD Voices for Impeachment
i don’t disagree with the purpose of the march, the position of the group organizing the march, or the objectives of the march….i do however feel that with the march culminating at the pentagon, the citizens who are still on the “fence” about iraq, and the soldiers who are dying in this ill-begotten war will see it as “not supporting the soldiers”. i support the military, i do NOT support, and i have NEVER supported the war on iraq. this regime used the conservative media and threatening, devisive, fear-mongering rhetoric with 9/11 being the flame to spark the wildfire of hate against a country that had nothing to do with 9/11. i never believed the wmd lies, and many soldiers of all ranks did not either. our country and our military has historically been defensive in nature: defend our country and defend those in need of our strength against invaders. this regime changed the course of our history and ensured our place in history as agressors, no longer the defenders.
i believe the march needs to end at the white house and congress………they alone can change the destructive course we are hurtling down. the pentagon cannot.
you don’t impeach the president by marching on a group that can’t even initiate impeachment proceedings, only congress can do that. therefore, end the march in front of congress.
Part of the problem has to do with certain familier names operating out of the pentagon these days. They are not informing congress of what they are doing and so it is hard to expect congress to act on something it isn’t even aware of. The same players that were involved in Iran-Contra are back. (read the Seymore Hersch article. They’re in the pentagon but they “don’t trust uniform military or the CIA.” All of this I think leads to Cheney. He was in the middle of it back then and I’m sure he’s directing it now. As a result of Hersch’s article, congress has just been made aware and is beginning to investigate this. This hasn’t really begun to hit the main stream news yet but this is what I believe is going to bring down this administration. follow the money as they say…
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