No tribute to gods of war

We think that Senator Tom Dacshle (D-S.D.) and Rep. Dick Gephardt (D.-Mo.) have got it wrong – that by acting quickly to give President Bush power to intervene militarily in Iraq, they will be able to return to “their issues” in time to win the Nov. 5 elections.

Why the rush to judgment in a situation where polls show growing opposition to military action undertaken outside the United Nations, where the letters to the editor of most newspapers are running overwhelmingly in support of using diplomatic measures to deal with the Iraq situation and where correspondence addressed to members of both House and Senate show overwhelming opposition to military intervention?

We are among those who charge that the Bush administration has launched the drive for war with Iraq in order to remove its failed domestic policies as the defining issues in the Nov. 5 election. We know – as does the president – that were it not for Iraq, the public discourse would be focused on Enron and WorldCom. But having said that, there is little reason to believe that Iraq will drop off the radar screen if Bush is given power to act as he will.

If Congress gives Bush an inch he will take a mile. Instead of being “should” we go to war – and there has been little debate on that – the question will become “when” – and that will drown out all debate about Social Security, a prescription drug plan under Medicare, better schools, the right of workers to organize, corporate greed, taxes and regulation of security markets. These are our issues and we do not want them sacrificed to the gods of war.

The way to defend these programs, the way to counter those who, if war comes, will say “we can’t afford that,” is to demand that Congress say “no” to a war that will cost as much as $200 million.

There’s still time to get your representative or senator in line!


Taking the Peace Road – a necessity

As the Bush Gang of Thugs – Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Powell and Perle – drive for war with Iraq, they claim the road to peace and democracy goes through Baghdad.

These “Pax Americana” architects are thriving on destabilization and destruction in the entire region. Destroying the road to real peace and democracy which goes through Jerusalem by way of ending the occupation of Palestinian lands.

How can peace and democracy flourish while U.S.-made Israeli tanks, bombs and bulldozers surround President Yassir Arafat’s headquarters while Palestinian civilians are killed by the Israeli army?

The Palestinian and Israeli conflict must be settled based on UN resolutions. The fulfillment of these resolutions is the only basis for peace and democracy in the Middle East.

The Bush administration – extremely clever in their diversionary policies – succeeded in changing the public’s focus from this conflict to Iraq, taking attention away from their failed foreign policy in the region and their attack on the role of the UN in peacefully resolving conflicts.

Their aims are the same. Strategic control of the Middle East for corporate oil profits and to derail the people’s struggles for self determination, democracy and peace.

But the people see, as the Israeli army attacks the Palestinian leadership, the peaceful resolution of this conflict looms large as the key to stability for the region.

The threat of U.S. war with Iraq has given a green light to reactionary terrorists as well as the state terror tactics of the Israeli army.

To leave the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Palestine and Israel in the hands of the ultraright Sharon government, is morally wrong.

A growing majority is in favor of negotiated, peaceful settlements in all of the Mideast situations.

The U.S. people can put a brake on the Bush administration’s plans for world war by working overtime to defeat Bush’s party in upcoming elections. Send the message to Bush: the 2002 elections are a referendum on your policies at home and abroad.