Blog: Spirit Speaks
by Liora Leah

Votes for Peace

Peace Action applauds the National election results of November 7, while acknowledging that there is much work to be done to bring about Peace to the planet

Date:   11/8/2006 7:11:50 PM   ( 15 y ) ... viewed 1824 times

I am heartened that the American electorate has demanded change, and that more candidates who will challenge Bush’s war policies have replaced incumbents in a Congress that has been a rubber stamp for the Bush Administration's tragic and deadly misadventure in Iraq, as well as a host of disastrous foreign policy choices that have only exacerbated dangerous situations around the world while destroying our ability to lead other nations. If, as appears likely, the Democrats are the majority party in both Houses, we have an opening for change, and the peace movement’s steadfast opposition to Bush’s imperial conquest turned quagmire in Iraq is the central factor in creating that opening.

But now, the day after the election, our celebration must be tempered by the sober recognition of the work that lies before us - and that the occupation of Iraq, and threat of war with Iran - are not simply past actions of an administration that need to be investigated, but ongoing, continually developing crises that need to be addressed, immediately, to prevent even further chaos and massive loss of life.

Hearings are absolutely necessary, but they are not sufficient. The newly-elected Congress can not spend two years simply investigating the missteps of the Bush Administration - it must act to change our nation's foreign policy, and immediately. It is this Congress' job to do the will of the people that elected them. And while we understand that there are many issues facing the new Congress, the #1 issue that must be dealt with, the issue that created the need for a new Congress, is the ongoing war and occupation of Iraq. Delay on this issue is not an option.

Some congressional staff have told us that even with a new Congress, it could still take five years to bring all our troops home from Iraq. We cannot and will not accept such a delay in ending our military occupation of that nation.

So the Democrats have a job to do. But even more importantly, so do we, the peace movement and citizens of this country.

We cannot let up the pressure now, not for an instant. In fact, this is precisely the moment we must begin to increase the pressure. Thousands upon thousands of lives depend on our ability to ramp up pressure to make this new Congress actually do what was demanded of it in this election. (And the mandate for peace is even larger than it appears, given the corporate money, voting irregularities, Republican chicanery, Democratic “centrism,” gerrymandering and powers of incumbency which all serve to suppress the pro-peace vote.)

And so, while we should still feel good and even celebrate yesterday's election results, particularly the large numbers of you who worked for candidates, or supported the Peace Action PAC or Peace Voter campaigns, or whom signed the Voters for Peace Pledge or helped produce this election result in any number of other ways, we cannot rest on our laurels, or sit back and wait for the Democrats to take action. We must compel them to take action.

You will hear from us soon on our next steps. In the meantime, I thank you again for everything you do for peace, and look forward to continuing to walk this long and difficult, but beautiful, road to peace with you.


Kevin M. Martin
Executive Director
Peace Action & Peace Action Education Fund

p.s. - I encourage you to add your own comment on the election, and read others, at our Peace Blog!

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