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Green Party LogoGreen Party: No new U.S. military action in Iraq

GREEN PARTY OF THE UNITED STATES
http://www.gp.org

For Immediate Release:
Thursday, June 19, 2014

Contacts:
Scott McLarty, Media Coordinator, 202-904-7614, mclarty@greens.org
Starlene Rankin, Media Coordinator, 916-995-3805, starlene@gp.org

Airstrikes, ground troops will not solve new conflicts, say Greens

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WASHINGTON, DC -- The Green Party of the United States is calling for no new U.S. military action in Iraq, including on-the-ground troop deployment and airstrikes.

Greens are urging President Obama to resist demands by belligerent politicians and pundits for a U.S. assault in Iraq against ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria).

"Those who want peace in the region should prepare to resume the protests that answered President Bush's drumbeat for war. Americans should resist propaganda claiming that U.S. military assaults lead to peace and liberation. The 2003 invasion caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians, as well as 4,486 U.S. service members, and destruction of Iraqi society and infrastructure," said Cheri Honkala, the Green Party's 2012 nominee for Vice President (http://www.jillstein.org/cheri_honkala).

Drone attacks, which President Obama expanded in Pakistan and other countries and which the Green Party has vigorously opposed, don't only "take out" enemies, they also cause civilian death and widespread terror among populations that live near targets.

Greens said that further U.S. military action is likely to aggravate the current crisis and may empower ISIS and other factions, as the history of U.S. engagement in Iraq demonstrates. The invasion ordered by President Bush in 2003 made such conflict inevitable: sectarian extremist groups, which had a marginal presence in Iraq before 2003, began to emerge in the chaos of war, especially after the Iraq's armed forces and civil services were dismantled. Such groups include al-Qaeda and militias supported by Saudi Arabia, Iran, and other countries.

CIA officials warned the Bush Administration in advance that war would cause a larger breakdown and increase tensions in Iraq between Shiites and Sunnis, but the Bush Administration ignored ignored this advice and misrepresented the CIA's analysis.

Green Party leaders also noted the dangerous inconsistency of a foreign policy that supports arming sectarian anti-Assad rebels in Syria and anti-Gaddafi factions in Libya while bombing their counterparts in Iraq. (See "ISIS Iraq Offensive: Can the Empire Reassert Control of the Jihadists?" by Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report, June 17, http://www.blackagendareport.com/content/isis-iraq-offensive-can-empire-reassert-control-jihadists)

President Obama withdrew U.S. troops from Iraq in 2011, in accord with the schedule signed by Bush and under pressure from the Iraqi Parliament.

"The President should not heed the advice of Republican and Democratic warhawks who were completely wrong about Iraq twelve years ago," said Howie Hawkins, Green candidate for Governor of New York (http://www.howiehawkins.org). "The current situation shows the consequences of a doctrine of military aggression that was behind an attempt to establish U.S. political hegemony and unrestricted access to oil resources in the Middle East."

"The U.S. media and Democratic Party leaders swallowed the Bush Administration's false statements about WMDs, Iraqi involvement in the 9/11 attacks, and Saddam Hussein's nuclear ambitions. Instead of enjoying more airtime, Bush officials who lied should be investigated and prosecuted for conspiracy related to manipulation of intelligence, public deception, and violation of international law to which the U.S. is signatory," said Mr. Hawkins.

Greens said that Congress must repeal the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) and the bipartisan "blank check" for the White House to wage war, which initiated an era of endless war and increasing attacks on Muslim countries that had not attacked the U.S. The Green Party also calls for deep reductions in military spending and transfer of funding to human needs.

See also:

"The United States' Tragic Role in Iraq"
By Stephen Zunes, The Progressive, June 16, 2014
http://www.progressive.org/news/2014/06/187738/united-states-tragic-role-iraq

"Vets Say: No Military Intervention In Iraq"
By Staff and VeteransForPeace.org, Popular Resistance, June 16, 2014
http://www.popularresistance.org/vets-say-no-military-intervention-in-iraq/

"Wake Up and Smell the Oil: The Grass-Roots Struggle Against the Oil Plunder in Iraq"
Book review of "Fuel on the Fire: Oil and Politics in Occupied Iraq" by Greg Muttitt
By Eddie J. Girdner, Monthly Review, April 2014
http://monthlyreview.org/2014/04/01/wake-smell-oil

"Do Not Bomb, Arm, or Send Troops to Iraq" (petition)
http://diy.rootsaction.org/petitions/do-not-bomb-arm-or-send-troops-to-iraq


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Green Party 2014 Annual National Meeting in St. Paul, Minn., July 24-27
"Back to Our Roots: People. Planet. Principles."
http://2014greenpartyconvention.org

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