Posted by CODEPINK Staff
It is with great sorrow that we listened to President Obama’s speech about escalating US military intervention in Iraq and Syria to counter to horrific policies of ISIS. We have watched in horror over the past decade how the US invasion of Iraq opened the floodgates of sectarian hatred and supported an abusive Shia government, leading to the disenfranchisement of the Sunnis and the empowering of ISIS.
Our hearts break for the suffering people in the region but we firmly believe that US military intervention has been a central ingredient in fueling the violence and further intervention will be counterproductive. The solutions will be political and economic, not military: the Sunnis and Kurds must feel that the central government in Baghdad represents their interests so they will unite against ISIS; countries must stop arming ISIS and purchasing the oil they control; the peace process to settle the Syrian war must be reignited, with civil society and women’s groups at the table; massive amounts of humanitarian aid must be provided to deal with the devastating consequences of war (surely if there are billions for war, there must be billions for aiding refugees and rebuilding).
Many Americans have unfortunately been whipped up by the media, Congressional hawks, and now the Obama administration to support this latest round of intervention. But we are certain that this support is neither deep nor strong nor long-term. After 12 years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with the drone wars, Americans across the political spectrum realize that these interventions have not defeated extremist groups and have only drained our resources from much needed programs at home. They will soon understand the folly of this new round of intervention in complicated civil and regional wars.
CODEPINK put up a mighty fight against President Bush’s wars, and we have continued to expose and oppose President Obama’s foreign policies that promote violence and injustice. For years now we have been organizing against the immoral drone wars, the administration’s failure to close the Guantanamo prison, US support for repressive regimes from Israel to Saudi Arabia to Egypt, the hundreds of overseas military bases and the bloated Pentagon budget. The only ones to benefit from these militaristic policies are the arms dealers and the military contractors.
CODEPINK will work with the broader peace movement at home and abroad to mobilize opposition to this most recent escalation of US intervention. We will continue to support our partners in the region, particularly women's groups, and to advocate for policies that promoting life-affirming activities.
Join us: sign this petition to President Obama telling him notto bomb Syria and Iraq!