Don’t Let the EAGLE Act Fly Through Congress

Send a letter to the House of Representatives today to ask them to vote no on H.R. 3524 The EAGLE Act, which would give the Department of Defense an additional $7.5 BILLION of our tax dollars to ramp up the U.S.'s next forever war on China and endanger our planet and its people! We know U.S. imperialism impacts people outside of the United States the most, so we invite all people to send a message to Congress that this anti-China fueled militarism must END! Read our action alert on The EAGLE Act here. Plus, read our article on the EAGLE Act in CounterPunch here! Finally, you can read the full text of H.R. 3524 the EAGLE Act here.

Dear Member of Congress:

I am writing to you today to urge you to vote no on the massive anti-China bill H.R. 3524 The Ensuring American Global Leadership and Engagement Act, or the EAGLE Act. The EAGLE Act is a dangerous piece of legislation that commits our tax dollars to funding foreign military training and weapons transfers while appropriating an additional $7.5 billion dollars to the Department of Defense to escalate the U.S.'s next protracted war — this time in the Asia-Pacific.

Especially in the aftermath of the U.S. war in Afghanistan — which took the lives of more than 71,000 Afghan and Pakistani civilians, decimated public infrastructure, and dramatically worsened human rights and living conditions for Afghans — I find it extremely inappropriate for the U.S. to allocate $7.5 billion to the Department of Defense and expand foreign military training in the region with $225,000,000 over the next five years. This unnecessary military funding would formally prepare the U.S. for further violent and aggressive military intervention in the Asia-Pacific region.

I am also deeply concerned by the numerous references in this bill to extensive U.S.-led weapon transfers and arms races that give away our tax dollars to military contractors while increasing the chances for catastrophic kinetic and nuclear warfare that will endanger billions of lives in the Asia-Pacific. For example, the bill includes provisions to “expand and strengthen” the United States Conventional Arms Transfer Policy, in order to “design for export” and delivery “to Indo-Pacific allies and partners capabilities critical to maintaining a favorable military balance in the region.” These weapons include long-range precision fires, air and missile defense systems, anti-ship and land attack cruise missiles, conventional hypersonic systems, intelligence and surveillance, command and control systems, and more. The United States should be promoting deescalation and disarmament to make its citizens safer, not perpetuating an arms race in a region across the globe.

The EAGLE Act brings us dangerously close to war with China by deepening the U.S. commitment to defend Taiwan at all costs, including with nuclear warfare. This deeper commitment to Taiwan ignores over forty years of established U.S. foreign policy known as the One-China policy, which has delivered peace and stability to the region. The EAGLE Act provokes conflict and begins the buildup for a protracted war over Taiwan by encouraging Taiwan and other U.S. allies in the region to heavily invest in weapons and munitions “to meet contingency requirements and avoid the need for accessing United States stocks in wartime.” These buildups cannot reasonably be called deterrence while this bill also agitates existing agreements for peace like the One-China Policy.

As an American, I am exhausted by foreign wars fought in our name that harm and kill innocent people, many of them civilians, overseas while making us less safe at home, and I do not want to see my representatives pushing for more missiles, surveillance, “joint military exercises and operations,” and mock nuclear strikes in preparation for war with China over the question of Taiwan. In order to truly protect Americans from actual threats like nuclear war, climate change, and the pandemic, Congress must be willing to stop expanding our costly and destructive military-industrial complex.

Another unacceptable aspect of the EAGLE Act is the consistent anti-China rhetoric that is repeated again and again throughout the bill and in promotion of the bill. The language in the EAGLE Act that portrays China as manipulative, distortive, and predatory. This narrative paves the way for more dangerous, and potentially deadly, scapegoating of not just China’s politicians and leaders but all Chinese and Chinese-perceived people, including other Asian and Asian American communities. We have already seen coast-to-coast violence against these communities in the U.S. in part because of this kind of xenophobic political rhetoric, which has unfortunately continued to be weaponized past the Trump administration into the Biden administration.

Even more alarmingly, the EAGLE Act would invest half a billion dollars into producing, spreading, and legitimizing misinformation, propaganda, and rhetoric that demonizes China and Chinese people in order to promote U.S. interests. This includes a minimum of $50 million dollars in funding for Radio Free Asia, which began broadcasting propaganda to mainland China in 1951, and which even the New York Times has described as “an arm of the C.I.A.”

While the EAGLE Act seeks to ensure American global leadership, it ignores our most pressing domestic issues, ensuring that America is anything but a role model for other nations as U.S. citizens face deteriorating health systems, rampant housing crises, out-of-control police and gun violence, mass incarceration, and disastrous climate change. For a bill that makes clear the devastating consequences Americans would face if the global average temperature rose 2 degrees celsius, its proposal of more funding for militarism, weapons transfers, and joint force exercises is pure self-defeatism. We cannot effectively address the climate crisis and its impacts on our planet unless we decrease — not increase — U.S. militarism, which has the largest carbon and greenhouse gas footprint of any organization in the world, larger than that of each of 140 countries.

Ultimately, the EAGLE Act is a dangerous, environmentally destructive, and racist bill that will exacerbate domestic and international issues and spiral us towards nuclear war and climate extinction. Instead of addressing issues that impact American people like nuclear proliferation, gun violence, and poor public health systems, the EAGLE Act would allocate billions to the military, enriching weapons contractors and risking the escalation of the U.S.'s next potential forever war. Please vote No on the EAGLE Act and use your power and authority in Congress to legislate solutions to humanity's greatest issues by promoting opportunities for mutual respect and cooperation, not conflict, with China.

Respectfully,

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