War Is a Crime & Democrats.com & Ibrahim Ahmad – 2013-08-31 00:59:26
Opposition to Iraq War May Save Syria
David Swanson / War Is a Crime
(August 30, 2013) — Evidence of “weapons of mass destruction” is “no slam dunk,” US officials are saying this time around, reversing the claim made about Iraq by then-CIA director George Tenet.
Opposition to a US-led attack on Syria is growing rapidly in Europe and the United States, drawing its strength from public awareness that the case made for attacking Iraq had holes in it.
A majority in the United States, still very much aware of Iraq war deceptions, opposes arming the “rebel” force in Syria, so heavily dominated by foreign fighters and al Qaeda. And a majority opposes US military action in Syria.
But that public opinion is only just beginning to get expressed as activism. With Republicans more willing to actively oppose a war this time, and some section of Democrats still opposed, there’s actually potential to build a larger antiwar movement than that of 2003-2006.
Thus far, however, what’s discouraging an attack on Syria is the public uproar that was created back then over the disastrous attack on Iraq.
The nation of Iraq was destroyed. Millions of refugees still can’t safely return. As with every other humanitarian war thus far, humanity suffered, and the suffering will last for ages. While the damage done to the United States itself doesn’t compare with the damage done to Iraq, it has been severe en ough to make many a near-sighted potential war supporter cautious.
The problem with attacking Iraq was not that the vast stockpiles of weapons were fictional. Had every claim been true, the war would have remained illegal, immoral, and catastrophic.
Were it true that the Syrian government really chose the moment of the UN inspectors’ arrival to use chemical weapons, launching a US war on Syria would still hurt the people of Syria — who are overwhelmingly opposed to it, regardless of their level of support for their government.
A regional or even global war could result. The US military is planning for such scenarios, as if preparing for the apocalypse while igniting it makes the action less insane.
A war of supposed humanitarian philanthropy should consider the value to humanity of the rule of law. Launching a war in violation of the Kellogg-Briand Pact, the United Nations Charter, and the US Constitution hurts the rule of law.
A war of beneficial generosity should consider other possible medicines that lack the deadly side-effects of war. For example, the United States could easily stop supporting and arming abusive dictatorships in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, Yemen, and Egypt, not to mention the horrors inflicted on Palestine by Israel.
A so-called good and noble war against the evil of chemical weapons should probably be launched by a nation that doesn’t itself use chemical weapons. Yet, the United States used white phosphorous and napalm as weapons in Iraq, not to mention such internationally sanctioned weapons as depleted uranium and cluster bombs — weapons the United States also sells to other governments regardless of their human rights records (including a big shipment of cluster bombs now headed to Saudi Arabia).
A humanitarian and just war should perhaps show equal concern for those humans killed with any kind of weapon. Bombing Syria woul d inevitably kill significant numbers of people. Isn’t that a problem even if they’re killed with the “right” kind of weapons?
Both sides in the war in Syria have killed large numbers of people. We have heard as many serious accounts of the rebels using chemical weapons as the government. Should indisputable facts establish that both sides have used those forbidden weapons, surely the proper response will not be to bomb both sides.
By joining in this war, on the side of an armed opposition dominated by people with no concern for democracy or human rights, the United States will make itself more hated in the region than its previous military actions already have. While this war has nothing to do with defending the United States, it will in fact endanger it.
Here’s what should be done instead: Pressure Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states and Turkey to stop arming one side, while pressuring Russia and Iran to stop arming the other. Insi st on a cease-fire. Support UN inspections of the evidence of crimes by both sides. Provide humanitarian aid to Syria, Syrian refugees (now fleeing in greater numbers as the US threatens to attack), and others suffering in the region. Support nonviolent democracy movements.
And why stop there?
* End the occupation of Afghanistan, which we think of as “ending” but which is still twice as large as when President Obama was elected.
* Stop arming brutal dictatorships and calling the weapons “aid.”
* Close Guantanamo and other lawless prison sites.
* Halt US drone and other missile strikes worldwide.
* Bring US troops home from 175 nations.
* Spend 10% of the US military budget providing the world with clean drinking water, food, and assistance in sustainable agriculture and energy.
Our options are not to do nothing or to bomb Syria into the sort of disaster created in Iraq. There is an alternative that benefits Syrians , makes us safer, and costs less in money, lives, and morality.
Take action online: http://RootsAction.org
Take action in DC on Saturday:
And everywhere else:
Flyers you can use to oppose this war: Color PDF, Black and White PDF.
No Syria War
Bob Fertik / Democrats.com
We say No!
Attacking Syria won’t reduce the violence — it will only escalate it with devastating consequences for Syrians and Americans, as we learned so painfully in Iraq.
The US invasion of Iraq killed 100,000 to 600,000 Iraqi civilians. For Americans, the invasion killed 4,486 US troops and wounded 32,223. Of the 2.3 million US troops who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, roughly 20% suffer from PTSD or Traumatic Brain Injury, and hundreds commit suicide each year. For returning troops and their loved ones, the war is never over.
President Obama may prefer sending missiles and bombs from a distance, but these are acts of war that can easily lead to all-out war with Syria.
Moreover Syria, unlike Iraq, has the support of major military powers like Russia and Iran, which could lead to a much larger war across the entire Middle East.
Economically, the US absolutely cannot afford war with Syria. The Iraq War cost the US economy $3 trillion and helped cause the Great Recession of 2008 , which has still not ended.
Since Republicans refuse to raise taxes, the inevitable costs of a Syrian War will come from food stamps, education, health care, environmental protection, and Social Security. The American people adamantly oppose cuts to these essential programs.
These are among the reasons Americans oppose a Syria War.
The US cannot solve Syria’s civil war by turning that war into a US war — instead we must increase our efforts to find a diplomatic solution, as was done successfully in Northern Ireland.
And when we have solid evidence of the people who ordered any chemical weapons attacks, we should bring them before the International Criminal Court for war crimes.
Most Americans oppose a Syria War — and I am one of them. The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were disastrous, both in human and economic terms. War in Syria could be even worse.
We have no idea who we’re fighting for — Al Qaeda?
Moreover we already have a federal budget crisis that is causing devastating cuts to food stamps, Head Start, and other crucial programs. We have absolutely no money for a new Syria War.
A US war is not the solution to Syria’s civil war — we need increased diplomacy instead, like the successful effort to end the civil war in Northern Ireland. And whoever ordered chemical attacks should be prosecuted by the International Criminal Court.
As your constituent, I demand that you vote against a Syria War, and block any funds for any military actions that could start such a war.
ACTION ALERT: About Syria
(August 30, 2013) — Please help me in spreading the word about the unjustified war the overzealous want to launch in Syria against the will of the majority of Syrians, using false unfounded accusation about the use of chemical weapons, with staged and prepared agenda even before the UN finish its investigation.
It seems the politicians have memory problems and do not learn from history, wanting to repeat the mistakes of the past while the public is hypnotized and busy watching NFL/NBA/and other Different TV shows.
As Syrian American who raised and lived most of my life in Syria and visited Syria three times during this unrest and came back 4 weeks ago from there, I can tell you no one there with sound mind want foreign countries to bomb their land with uranium tainted explosives, only the murderers and the criminal and the cannibals you’ve seen on TV/YouTube are celebrating the current news about the crazy administration getting us in new war only to say later “sorry, we didn’t know” that Al-Qaida and the extremists will reap the sacrifice of our troops like other places,
Petition to the White House