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January/February 2010 Postcard

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DEAR PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA:

The Bush administration dubbed the wars in Iraq andAfghanistan part of a global “war on terror.” I believe that killing more Afghans and Iraqis,many of them civilians, will not end terrorism but instead motivate new recruits. Only a handful of al-Qaeda fighters exist in Afghanistan and Pakistan. If your administration is serious about formulating a plan to “disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-Qaeda,” you are pursuing exactly the wrong approach.

It is U.S. financial and political support for Israel’s occupation of Arab lands that is the major grievance people have with our country. U.S. support for a just Arab-Israeli peace agreement would end al-Qaeda’s most useful propaganda tool.An even-handed U.S. foreign policy could bring about a two-state solution and inspire hope for the future in other beleaguered lands. The wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and threats of attacks on Pakistan or Iran are not in the national interest of the United States.We can’t afford them, and they are just a distraction from the real issue: Middle East peace. 


DEAR SENATOR:

The Bush administration dubbed the wars in Iraq andAfghanistan part of a global “war on terror.” I believe that killing more Afghans and Iraqis, many of them civilians, will not end terrorism but instead motivate new recruits. Only a handful of al-Qaeda fighters exist in Afghanistan and Pakistan. If Obama’s administration is serious about formulating a plan to “disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-Qaeda,” it is pursuing exactly the wrong approach.

It is U.S. financial and political support for Israel’s occupation of Arab lands that is the major grievance people have with our country. U.S. support for a just Arab-Israeli peace agreement would end al-Qaeda’s most useful propaganda tool. An even-handed U.S. foreign policy could bring about a two-state solution and inspire hope for the future in other beleaguered lands. The wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and threats of attacks on Pakistan or Iran are not in the national interest of the United States. We can’t afford them, and they are just a distraction from the real issue: Middle East peace. 


DEAR REPRESENTATIVE:

The Bush administration dubbed the wars in Iraq andAfghanistan part of a global “war on terror.” I believe that killing more Afghans and Iraqis, many of them civilians, will not end terrorism but instead motivate new recruits. Only a handful of al-Qaeda fighters exist in Afghanistan and Pakistan. If Obama’s administration is serious about formulating a plan to “disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-Qaeda,” it is pursuing exactly the wrong approach.

It is U.S. financial and political support for Israel’s occupation of Arab lands that is the major grievance people have with our country. U.S. support for a just Arab-Israeli peace agreement would end al-Qaeda’s most useful propaganda tool. An even-handed U.S. foreign policy could bring about a two-state solution and inspire hope for the future in other beleaguered lands. The wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and threats of attacks on Pakistan or Iran are not in the national interest of the United States. We can’t afford them, and they are just a distraction from the real issue: Middle East peace. 


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(Cartoon Arts International NY Times Syndicate).
   

THE WARS IN IRAQ and Afghanistan have cost close to $1 trillion since 2001, according to a recent report by the Congressional Research Service (CRS). The CRS stated that the cost of continuing the Iraq and Afghanistan wars is about $11 billion
per month—with no end in sight.

According to White House Office of Management and Budget director Peter Orszag, it costs about $1 million per year per soldier in the field, so your plan to send 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan will
cost another $30 billion per year. We’re waging unwinnable wars on money borrowed from China. Americans already have a $12 trillion debt that our grandchildren will have to repay.

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