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California's Feminist Socialist Political Party

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Home About Us Resolutions/Statements Act Now to Stop the Bombing of Syria

Act Now to Stop the Bombing of Syria

Posted on September 9, 2013 by the Communications Committee

Statement by Kevin Akin, Peace and Freedom Party State Chair, 9 September 2013.

Sending a Message, Gangster-Style: This New War Of Choice is a Really Bad Idea

When gangsters want to "send a message" to their rivals, they often kill and wound people from their rivals' neighborhood. No need to attack actual members of the other gang, just kill anyone in the area: this gets the message across. This way of sending a message is not new. It is older than history. Julius Caesar did it, Charlemagne did it, Tamerlane did it, and on down through the ages to today. Barack Obama, sadly, is not even the first Nobel Peace Prize winner to adopt this practice, and probably won't be the last.

While there may be other purposes to Obama's proposal that the United States launch crippling attacks on Syria, the one that is cited by the administration is to send a message. A message written in Syrian blood. It is stated by the administration that the air attacks would not be a precursor to a land invasion (though there are already many thousands of heavily-armed United States troops on the ground along the Syrian border). Advocates of his proposal say that the proposed attacks will not change much of anything (although those families who would lose members to Obama's bombs and missiles might have a different view). His supporters claim that a message must be sent, in response to recent use of chemical weapons by someone in Syria.

The evidence that Syrian President Assad personally ordered the use of chemical weapons appears to be non-existent, and the evidence that Syrian government forces used chemical weapons is far from conclusive. Those who suggest that certain Syrian rebel groups may have used chemical weapons are ridiculed and baited, but not refuted. The very limited and clearly distorted "evidence" being provided to credulous members of Congress is being kept secret from the public so that the official statements are not drowned out by a chorus of snickers and derisive catcalls from those who notice how thin and unconvincing the "evidence" is.

Even if Syrian forces did use chemical weapons, despite the unreliability of the evidence presented so far, a unilateral attack on Syria is clearly the wrong response. Obama appears determined to launch an attack even if the United Nations opposes it, even if almost all the European allies of the United States oppose it, and despite the British Parliament having rejected the same proposal when it was submitted by their own Prime Minister. A clear majority of the American people oppose the proposed attack, and that opposition becomes stronger every day, but the violence enthusiasts in Washington insist on war nonetheless.

We have been down this road before. Distorted evidence, secret briefings filled with absurd lies, members of the national legislature pressed to support the President for partisan reasons, the posturings of "patriots" who care nothing about working people, whether foreign or American, all this we have seen in connection with the fake "attack" in the Gulf of Tonkin off Vietnam, and in connection with the Iraqi "weapons of mass destruction" that could not be found after the war began.

Ten years ago a new phrase was coined: "war of choice." There is an older word for an unprovoked war, a war that is not a defense against an attack but a cold-blooded decision to kill tens of thousands to advance a policy, or send a brutal and bloody message. That word is "aggression." An attack against Syria by the government of the United States would be an act of aggression. Aggression is a crime under international law. To be more specific, aggression certainly meets the definition of a "high crime and misdemeanor," even if Congress is maneuvered into endorsing it. Breaking dozens of treaties outlawing aggression, with the stated intent of unilaterally "enforcing" a treaty against the use of chemical weapons, makes no sense in terms of international law, or of common sense.

As of this writing, there is still time to help senators and members of the House of Representatives understand how strongly the people of the United States reject this proposed war of aggression.

The Peace and Freedom Party strongly opposes and condemns the proposed resolution authorizing acts of war against Syria. We do not all have the same view of the bloody struggle now raging in Syria, but we all oppose intervention by the United States, in particular the specific acts of aggression proposed by President Obama. The Peace and Freedom Party urges its activists and members, and indeed everyone of every party or viewpoint, to take immediate action to stop this bloody mistake. Call, write, e-mail, and use every other means of communication to get the message across to the Senate and the House: we want peace, we reject war, and in particular we reject aggression. Attend vigils and demonstrations, visit congressional offices, sign petitions, and get your relatives, friends, co-workers and neighbors to do the same. Stop the proposed cold-blooded aggression against the people of Syria!


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