Think About This…Why Are So Many Veterans Against This War?

1. We do not want more of our troops to be exposed to the Depleted Uranium that our government uses on its bombs and ammo. Of the nearly 700,000 veterans who served in Desert Shield & Desert Storm, more than 300,000 have sought VA health care, & more than 200,000 have filed VA disability claims. President Bush insulted our sick and dying vets when he slashed $275 million from the health care budget of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

2. Donald Rumsfeld recently insulted our vets stating that those who fought and died for this country – sent to wars by Hawks like him – were pretty much a waste of time. *

3. We are about to set a new precedent in our nation. By engaging in a first strike policy against a country that is not attacking us and does not threaten our Constitution, we are about to become an aggressor country. This is precisely what we fought against in WWII when we went to WAR against the Fascism of Hitler. This first strike precedent has been soundly rejected in the Nuremberg Judgment for which we put Nazis leaders to death.

4. War does not bring peace or security. History has shown us that war always leaves the places that it is waged unstable and chaotic. Germany after World War I, Yugoslavia after the Civil War, and Afghanistan after both the Soviet and the American invasions are good examples of this effect. Modern warfare not only destroys the infrastructure of civilization, but the majority of the casualties are ordinary, “civilian” people. After war, even with outside aid, it takes decades for the physical, psychological, and social wounds to heal. It is during this unstable time that people become desperate enough to follow and believe in terrorist movements. Bombing Iraq back to the stone age again is only going to give motivation and power to terrorists across the world, and create more anti-US terrorists in the years to come. There will always be extremists and terrorists like Osama bin Laden or Timothy McVeigh. But there don’t always have to be people to follow them. Bin Laden was successful in recruiting and convincing potential terrorists in part because he could point to US aggressions in the first Gulf War, and across the world (Iran, Libya, Colombia, Panama) and say “These maniacs have to be stopped!” But what if he and other terrorist leaders didn’t have anything to point at? What if our country weren’t universally disliked by the common people? President Bush said that terrorists “Hate us because of our freedom”. That’s a lie. We’re hated because we hack and kill and run our well-armed men and women around the globe without a care about who we’re hacking, killing or running over. Finally, even if we ‘won’ the war in Iraq and put in a new government, there’s no guarantee that we’d be any safer. After all, we built up the military in Afghanistan, and put Saddam Hussein into power in Iraq. What makes us think we’ll do any better this time?

5. War is not supported by the international community. It should be a very strong statement that only one other country, Great Britain, is willing to stand beside us in this proposed war. The reasons are clear: Iraq hasn’t shown itself to be a threat, and there are no good reasons to wage war. This is why the UN, and 99% of the nations on earth don’t support war with Iraq. But instead of the UN’s non-support causing us to re-think our actions, our Government has continued on, headstrong, without a care about what the rest of the world thinks. Pres. Bush even went so far as to tell the U.N. that it would become “irrelevant” if it didn’t agree with our war push. A strange moment in history: the governing body that was designed to prevent war, told that it would be irrelevant unless it supports an unfounded war. And the U.N. is a good place to look when trying to get a historical perspective on our actions. Thinking back, there was another time in history when a country wanted to invade another country, against the better judgment and will of the international community. But then, as now, the community backed down, and appeased the aggressor. Hitler’s Germany took over Poland, and the terror of World War II was beginning. Iraq has not show any aggression towards other countries since the Gulf War, and we’ve invaded several sovereign countries.. Based on their actions, which country do you think has aspirations to take over the world?

6. War. Kills. Innocent. Human. Beings.Take a second an put yourself in Iraq during the war. Not in the place of a soldier or Saddam Hussein, but in the place of a mother or father, with children, living in Baghdad. There are airplanes dropping bombs around you day and night. You haven’t slept more than a few hours in weeks. Your family is terrified — if they’re all still alive, and no one knows when or where the next attack will happen. It’s not too difficult to relate to people in that circumstance. Think about how you felt after September 11th. About how unsure you were of when or where or if there’d be another terrorist strike. And understand that that feeling is exactly what we’re putting the Iraqi people through. The only difference is, they won’t have just one huge explosion that kills innocent people — they’ll feel this way every day for the entire war — and we’ll be the reason it’s happening. According to estimates by UNICEF and the World Health Organization, more than 400,000 children under the age of 5 have died from the first gulf war and the sanctions we’ve placed on Iraq since the first Gulf War. Now we’re talking about declaring war on these people again, so we can kill thousands more. Is this the legacy you want from your America?

* http://www.takebackthemedia.com/pentagoon2.html, http://www.defenselink.mil/news/Jan2003/t01072003_t0107sd.html