New House Resolution Asks for Some Answers about the War on Iraq; It Needs Our Support!
Center on Conscience & War, 3 March 2003
On February 25, Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Ellen Tauscher (D-PA), and Joseph Hoeffel (D-CA) introduced House Joint Resolution 24, which would require the President to report to Congress and answer a number of troubling unanswered questions before launching an invasion into Iraq. It may come as no surprise that some of these questions are very basic in their intent: they get us all thinking about the long-term effects of war. While some constituents hold that all war is wrong, these questions make clear to others why this particular war would be so catastrophic.
World War I was supposed to be "The War to End All Wars," and it was called "The Great War" until another huge war came along to rename it. Despite the ringing nobility of its name, thousands of conscientious objectors refused to serve in the United States Military, many went to jail, and some died for their cause. Today we stand at the brink of A War to Begin Wars, a war which will almost certainly lead to an isolation of the U.S. position and of its people, and will put our homeland security in the kind of jeopardy that Al-Qaeda could have only dreamed of a couple of years ago.
Help Congress ask these important questions about this war:
- Will diplomacy or other peaceful means work just as well to protect U.S. national security?
- How will military action against Iraq affect homeland security, the war on terrorism, stability in the Middle East, the Middle East peace process, and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction?
- How will the U.S. and its allies ensure that weapons of mass destruction will not disperse to other rogue states or terrorist organizations?
- After a war in Iraq, what is the plan for the U.S. to provide humanitarian assistance to the Iraqi people, to ensure respect for their human rights, and bring to justice individuals responsible for international war crimes in Iraq?
- How much do our allies really support this war, and how will this war affect their support for the war on terrorism?
- How will the U.S. and its allies protect their soldiers and Iraqi civilians from any environmental hazards resulting from military operations? How many soldiers and civilians are estimated to die or be wounded on both sides of the conflict? What measures are being taken to prevent civilian casualties and adhere to international law?
- What's the price tag for this war? This includes providing humanitarian aid to the Iraqi people, to neighboring nations because of possible refugee flows, reconstructing Iraq, and securing long-term political stability in Iraq.
- How will this war affect the economy?
Of course, we'd all love to hear the answers to these questions in the form the resolution calls for: a public address to a joint session of Congress. But this bill needs strong support from all of us, the constituents. Please call or write to your members of Congress and say that you want them to support H.J.Res. 24. (You can even ask them to co-sponsor it. Tell the staff-members they can co-sponsor the resolution by contacting Chris Aslin on Mr. Brown's staff by dialing 5-3401.)
Your senators can help out as well. Urge them to support companion legislation in the Senate. They will be joining millions of people around the world who are questioning the need for war and supporting a peaceful disarmament of Iraq.
To contact your members of Congress, write to:
The Honorable (Name)
United States Senate Washington, D.C. 20510
House of Representatives
The Honorable (Name)
United States House
of Representatives Washington D.C. 20515
Copyright © 2003 Center on Conscience & War
Reprinted for Fair Use Only.