At a time when 27 million U.S. workers are unemployed or underemployed and severe cuts in social programs are being implemented under the sequestration, the Obama administration is focused instead on finalizing plans to unleash a bombing attack on Syria.
We strongly believe that labor and our community partners should vehemently oppose such an attack.
After all, the government destroyed Iraq at a cost of 4,488 U.S. lives, tens of thousands casualties and billions of dollars, and at a cost of a million Iraqi lives and casualties, all based on a lie that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. And this came after the U.S. supported Iraq’s use of chemical weapons against Iran in the 1980s. Washington’s outrage is indeed selective.
The U.S. government attacked Afghanistan and 12 years later the war against that country is still going on with a further loss of human life and at a cost of $10 billion a month. But what benefit has that war brought to the working-class majority of either country?
Now a new U.S. war is apparently about to commence, this time against Syria. Will Iran be next? And which country will be the enemy after Iran?
A lot of terrible things are taking place not just in Syria but also in other parts of the world. But the U.S. has no right to intervene and dictate the course of events in other lands. We are not the world’s cop and have no right to go from one hot spot to the next, demanding that countries comply with what the U.S. government directs them to do.
The cornerstone of international law is that each country must decide its own destiny, free from outside intervention and dictation. Unfortunately, the U.S. has a long history of waging aggressive wars—even when it faces no immediate threat as is the case with Syria—because it does not approve of the regimes and policies of other countries. Vietnam is a classic example of where such a war was waged with enormous loss of blood and treasure, while the warmakers suffered a staggering defeat.
Labor must be unconditionally against any military aggression by the U.S. government—the only government in the world that used atomic weapons and that later used Agent Orange in Vietnam and Depleted Uranium in Iraq.
The American people are sick and tired of endless wars and occupations. All polls show an overwhelming majority of the public opposes a U.S. strike against Syria.
We urge our union brothers and sisters—and all of labor’s allies—to speak out now and demand of the U.S. government: “Money for Jobs and Education, Not for Wars and Occupations! Hands Off Syria!”