It’s sad to say that every time I sit down to write to you about Afghanistan, there is more bad news to report. At least 26 NATO soldiers were killed in Afghanistan last week. General McChrystal is facing the reality that Afghans in Kandahar oppose the planned military offensive there, but the US has not seriously explored any viable alternatives. Last week, the war in Afghanistan became the longest war in US history, surpassing US involvement in the disastrous war in Vietnam. Against this backdrop, the House is planning to vote on spending another $33 billion to escalate the war in Afghanistan.
Click here to tell your representative to vote against the war funding and in favor of an exit strategy.
You and I understand that the situation in Afghanistan will not get better if we stay stuck on the same counterproductive path. Thanks to your efforts, our representatives in Congress are starting to catch up. Last month, 18 senators voted to require the president to develop a timeline for withdrawal in Afghanistan. That might seem like a small number, but it was the first time these senators stepped up to push back against the administration’s open-ended strategy, and the list included Democrats in senior Senate leadership positions.
Now it’s the House’s turn. As we reported to you before, the bill is loaded up with money for important programs like Haiti relief and oil spill cleanup. We have joined other groups and leaders in Congress to urge the Democratic leadership to have a separate vote on the chunk of funding devoted to the war in Afghanistan so representatives can vote their consciences. Rep. McGovern’s bill requiring a timeline for withdrawal now has 94 cosponsors, and he will offer it as an amendment. We need a strong showing to demonstrate that momentum is building against the war in Afghanistan and create political space for the administration to start working to get us out of this costly and tragic war. Click here to write to your representative.
Military leaders and hawkish politicians like to talk tough about fighting in Afghanistan. But New York Times columnist Bob Herbert called on the US government to demonstrate true courage—the courage to leave Afghanistan. That courage is only going to come from a groundswell of public support for them to do the right thing. Take action today.
Thank you for creating that groundswell.