Statement on Iran and War

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STATEMENT ON IRAN AND WAR IN THE MIDDLE EAST AND CENTRAL ASIA

 

It is in our national interest to develop and improve peaceful relationships with all nations and to forge areas of cooperation and communication.

 

We the undersigned, as representatives of key peace organizations in the Lower Hudson Valley, we vehemently, strongly oppose both sanctions and military action against Iran.

 

Neither approach will further world peace. Either will cause incalculable harm to the people of Iran. Either will further darken the image of the United States amongst Moslems of good will. Finally, either approach will strengthen the hand of those urging more violence in response to our nation’s foreign policy.

 

Note that even threatening an attack on Iran is a violation of the United Nations Charter, which the United States is bound to observe by the United States Constitution. This kind of threat is a crime under international law, not just an unpleasantry.

 

Therefore, we urge all our appointed and elected officials to end all verbal assaults against Iran. We encourage our neighbors in the Lower Hudson Valley to support a peaceful resolution to the controversy around Iran’s nuclear program.

 

More broadly, we urge that the United States urgently work toward making the Middle East a nuclear weapons free zone. This policy, already endorsed by our Secretary of State, must be evenly applied to all nations in the Middle East. We cannot continue to expect some nations to resist the temptation to upgrade their armaments while our nation supports the nuclear weapons industries of rival nations. To this end, the United States must ask Israel to join the UN Non-Proliferation Treaty.

 

Finally, we urge our elected officials to begin the immediate withdrawal of US military forces, including military contractors, from Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, generally and to begin withdrawal of all US military forces, basing and military “aid” from the Middle East and Central Asia. In this regard, we call on our members of Congress to reject further funding for the Iraq and Afganistan/Pakistan wars, notably the $33 billion request under consideration in the Congress.

 

We recognize that the United States has sought to continue to engage in the Middle East and Central Asia because of energy resources in these regions. We assert that it is immoral and illegal for the United States to use military force to secure energy resources and that “terrorism” is a phony excuse used repeatedly to cover this improper use of the military. Counter-terrorism is work for police not soldiers.

 

We believe that the United States can have a constructive role in negotiations for peace within and among countries and groups in the Middle East and Central Asia, but only after the United States has withdrawn its military forces and presence and abandoned its ambitions for resources in these regions.