Published on Tuesday, December 15, 2009 by Politico.com
Alan Grayson: Afghan War 'Futile'
by Meredith Shiner
Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) says he'll vote against Pentagon appropriations bill to protest President Barack Obama's troop surge. (Photo: John Shinkle)
"This is an 18th century strategy being employed against a 14th century enemy," Grayson said. " Other countries, one after the other, have given up on this strategy over the years. This war is costing us much too much in both lives and money. There's too much blood being shed in
Grayson answered with a definitive "yes" when asked if he intends to vote against the pending Department of Defense appropriations bill.
How many other anti-war Democrats will do the same isn't clear, and Grayson said he hasn't yet tried to garner support among those opposed to the troop escalation.
"Each one of us has to decide that for himself or herself, I guess. I don't know if you'll see a lot of that or not. But I do know that we're finding the futility of being the world's policeman is becoming more and more obvious," Grayson said.
Grayson is one of a dozen co-sponsors of a privileged resolution demanding an end to the war in
"Unfortunately, we are now telling the American people that the only way they will get unemployment compensation is to support another $130 billion to keep wars going," Kucinich said. "What a cruel choice Congress is forcing on people out of work. Put your sons and daughters on the firing line, and we will pay you for being in the unemployment line."
Although Kucinich has not explicitly said he will vote against the legislation, a spokesperson for the Congressman noted he has yet to vote in favor of a war appropriations bill.
© 2009 Politico.com
Article printed from www.CommonDreams.org
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Published on Tuesday, December 15, 2009 by The
Afghan Affair More Than 'Nitpicking'
by Linda McQuaig
The irritation of members of the Harper government has been palpable in recent weeks as they tap their toes impatiently, wondering when they can return to the serious business of waging war without all these rude interruptions about torture.
Last Friday on CBC Radio's The Current, Laurie Hawn, parliamentary secretary to Defence Minister Peter MacKay, complained about all the "nitpicking" and insisted that the Afghan detainee issue is not one that concerns Canadians.
This dismissive attitude – which permeates the Harper government – is puzzling.
At stake is whether
If true, this could amount to a war crime. Given the gravity of what's involved, how can any attempt to ferret out the truth be derided as mere "nitpicking?"
The American Civil Liberties
Yet Cheney and Bush wander about freely; Cheney even still fancies himself a useful contributor to public debate.
This has some serious implications. This month, for the first time since Pew Research began polling on this question five years ago, a majority of Americans – 54 per cent – said torture could be justified against terrorist suspects, either sometimes or often.
This growing tolerance of torture may have something to do with the way the Obama administration – in its keenness to curry elusive Republican support – has declined to go after Bush and Cheney, even though the Convention Against Torture, signed by the U.S. in 1988, requires the prosecution or extradition of torturers.
Vowing to "look forward," the Obama administration has inadvertently sent a message to Americans that torture isn't really such a heinous crime.
If it was, surely the
Despite condemnation of torture in his Nobel Peace Prize speech last week, an accommodating Barack Obama has signalled his willingness to turn a blind eye to torture authorized by the White House, thereby bestowing on disgraced Republican practices the mantle of bipartisanship.
For that matter, much of Obama's Nobel speech was disturbingly Bushian. His defence of decades of
The bipartisan consensus in the
To their credit, Canadian opposition parties have refused to be silent about torture – surely one of the clearest markers dividing the civilized world from the barbaric.
With admirable tenacity, opposition parliamentarians have sent a message that no amount of lipstick will pretty up this pig.
Linda McQuaig's column appears every other week in The Star.
Article printed from www.CommonDreams.org
URL to article: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2009/12/15-2
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"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs