Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich – 2004-05-07 09:12:38
(April 20, 2004) — The situation in Iraq continues to get worse, and unfortunately leaders of both political parties do not seem to know any way out and they are guiding us towards a path of sending in more troops, which will inevitably prolong the war, and put us in a situation where we are going to have more casualties on both sides, and a greater cost to the American taxpayers and an alienation further from the nations of the world.
Your help has enabled me to bring a message that war is not inevitable and that peace is inevitable if we are willing to work for a new plan which will enable us to go to the United Nations and bring in UN Peacekeepers and bring our troops home. As you know, now we’ve been talking about this plan for six months. And as you know, with your help, I’ve been able to stay in this presidential campaign to continue to talk about the need for peaceful resolutions of the conditions in Iraq.
Now more than ever your help is needed to help us keep this message going. Now more than ever I need your financial assistance to make sure that we can carry this message not only through the platform committee process, but through to the convention so that our Democratic party can offer the American people a real alternative.
It really isn’t fair to the American people that they have to choose between a Democratic version of Iraq and a Republican version of the war in Iraq.
Yet our campaign gives the people some hope that there are alternatives. That we can go to the UN and ask the UN to handle the oil assets of Iraq on behalf of the Iraqi people until the Iraqi people are self-governing. The same with the contracts. That we tell the world community the United States is no longer interested in the privatization of Iraq. That we ask the UN for help in scheduling elections and drafting a constitution for Iraq. That we help to pay for what we destroyed, that we pay reparations to families of innocent victims and noncombatants who lost their lives in the conflict, and that we help fund a UN peacekeeping mission.
It’s not inevitable that we stay in Iraq. And it’s not necessary for our troops to have the bear the responsibility for stabilizing Iraq. You know and I know that the US invasion created the instability in Iraq. That the US invasion created a situation where the war is deepening, and that only when we get our troops home is there going to be any hope of bringing about a resolution provided of course that we can come to and agreement with the UN for a new peace plan. And that’s exactly what I’ve offered.
This is the moment when we get a chance to consciously choose a new direction for our nation. Your support for this campaign has made it possible for us to get this far.
We have to have the Democratic Party stand for peace. We can’t tell the American people that they’re going to be asked to choose between a Republican version of the war in Iraq and a Democratic version of the same.
We can enable the Democratic Party to stand for something. To stand for a new hope. To stand for a new way to stand for a course of action which will bring our troops home.
As we speak, 10,000 miles away, there are men and women who serve this country who wonder if their leaders are going to be able to come up with a solution so that they can come home and be with their families. As we speak, there is bloodshed in the streets of Iraq and people are wondering if there is any way out of this plight that seems to afflict this country without end.
And yet, we have it within our hands to take a new direction. We have it within our hearts to cause the American dream to be opened up to people in this country when we start focusing the resource of this country on rebuilding the American way of life, instead of using our military might to try to force people to accept conditions which are basically foreign to them.
This is the time that we get an opportunity to say what we stand for. Please stand with me as I continue to carry the challenge forward. The challenge that America must walk the way of peace.
The challenge of a Democratic Party must offer true peaceful alternatives. A challenge that as we prepare for a November election that our people can be given a real choice. And that when the choosing is complete, that they will have chosen peace, that they will have chosen reconnecting with the world community.
With your help this is possible. I look forward to continuing to work for you and with you in the weeks and the months ahead, as we prepare America to take a new course of action which will bring peace not only with Iraq, but will enable us to reconnect with the world community in the hopes of creating peaceful tomorrows.