WASHINGTON, DC -- The Green Party of the United States approved
a strongly worded statement last week against President Bush's intended
military invasion of Iraq. The statement was drafted by the party's
International Committee and passed by unanimous vote of the Coordinating
Committee, which includes delegates from 39 states and the District
of Columbia. The text of the statement is appended below.
"While Democratic leaders in Congress, including Senators Tom
Daschle and Joe Biden, have lined upbehind Bush's plan to violate
U.S. constitutional and international law, Greens have weighed the
invasion's legality, possible outcomes, and, most of all, cost in
human lives," said Dr. Jonathan Farley, Green Party candidate
for Congress from Tennessee. "We urge Americans to call their
Senators and Representatives and demand that they vote nay on any
legislation giving Bush the green light to invade."
The statement unites Green activists and this year's candidates
behind a common position on the threat of military action, and also
agrees with a September 10, 2002 statement from the Green/EFA Group
in the European Parliamant. Greens internationally are calling for
multilateral diplomatic strategies, beginning with a resumption
of U.N. inspections of Iraqi weapon systems, rather than unilateral
use of force. Condemning the invasion plans, the European Green
statement "support[s] those voices raised in the U.S. against
such an intervention."
"The elections in Germany, handing victory to the coalition
formed by Social Democrat Gerhard Schroeder with the Greens, showed
widespread German support for the Green position against the invasion,"
said Jay Robinson, Green candidate for Governor of Iowa. "Chancellor
Schroeder was reelected, and the Greens increased their number of
seats in the German parliament from 47 to 55. Opposition to invasion
is not confined to Germany; numerous heads of state and national
majorities around the world agree with us -- with the notable exception
of British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who increasingly shows himself
to be Bush's lapdog."
"If President Bush and Congress truly care about the security
of the U.S., they will work with the United Nations to address any
threat posed by Iraq through peaceful, diplomatic means," said
Tod Sloan, co-chair of the party's International Committee. "Unilateral
military action by the U.S. will increase the suffering of the Iraqi
people, provoke more terrorist attacks against Americans, and destabilize
the entire region from Israel and Palestine to Pakistan and India."
Greens note that the U.S. is already at war with Iraq -- a low intensity
war, with bombing raids every month. Between the destruction of
infrastructure and the sanctions, hundreds of thousands of Iraqi
civilians have died during the past decade, including half a million
children, according to U.N. figures.
Medea Benjamin, former Green Party candidate for the U.S. Senate
from California, made front pages last week when she disrupted Secretary
of Defense Donald Rumsfeld's presentation to Congress with a sign
calling for 'Inspectors not War.'
"All across the U.S., Greens are uniting with a growing grassroots
peace movement of ordinary citizens challenging Bush's rush to war,"
added Tod Sloan. "We're the side of the debate that's missing
from the op-ed pages and talking heads on television, arguing that
a war on Iraq would mostly serve the interests of big oil and the
defense industries -- lobbies represented by George W. Bush and
his cabinet of former CEOs. If there were an open and public debate,
few Americans would support Bush's plan.