Friday, October 9, 2009

NO Good War - No Good Drone - Notes from FCNL (A very good US lobby group)

FIRST, here's a helpful easy LETTER to send and if you are not in US, you can use it and find your own appropriate Ambassador or Legislator's email or FAX and send it to that person. Or if you have family in the states, why not sign on with your family's US state?

EASY LETTER TO SEND to Help End the Afghanistan/Pakistan War - You can edit and re-word this in your own way!

HERE

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Drones Destroy Diplomacy (and maybe Democracy too?) Keep in mind that a lot of the anti-war material these days is ONLY or MOSTLY referring to Afghanistan. We must constantly let folk know that PAKISTAN is every bit as much of a concern as far as a nation affected by US war-making.

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Friends Committee on National Legislation from Prevent War Email List
A Quaker Lobby in the Public Interest

AID TO AFGHANISTAN--PRICELESS

"Conventional wisdom is not sacred; security may not come from the barrel of a gun. Better force protection may be counterintuitive; it might come from less armor and less distance from the population."-General Stanley McCrystal from his report on Afghanistan


Eight years ago, FCNL launched its WAR IS NOT THE ANSWER campaign in an attempt to prevent the intractable situation the United States now confronts in Afghanistan. As President Barack Obama considers sending more troops, this war is far from over and has become even more complex. Preventing further escalation of the war and deeper entrenchment of the conflict will require a fundamental shift in U.S. policy.

Unfortunately, current U.S strategy in Afghanistan - with or without more troops - is deeply flawed. The use of Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs), which are teams of military and civilian personnel delivering aid under a shield of military force, undermines effective development and puts both Afghans and civilian workers at greater risk. The concept of PRTs, who controls them and what they symbolize for the future of civilian-military relationships and humanitarian law deserves more careful consideration. (As it stands now in BOTH Afghanistan and Pakistan) civilians more and more a part of the conflict rather than helping protect them from it.

We at FCNL are deeply concerned by the increasing encroachment of the military (link: here ) into civilian-mandated activities, such as, development and aid work. While the PRTs might seem like a useful partnership between military and civilian agents, in reality they are essentially military units with embedded civilians, all of whom answer to the military commander. Many policymakers applaud the PRTs as a way to "win the hearts and minds" of the Afghan people through aid and thus help the military achieve its objectives. However, using the military to deliver assistance is a problematic approach. It not only militarizes aid, linking it directly to military and political goals in the region instead of basing it on humanitarian imperatives, it also because it endangers all other civilian work. If it becomes impossible to tell which groups are military operatives and which are civilian aid workers, then everyone is at risk. A 2008 study by CARE found that attacks against humanitarian workers have risen significantly worldwide since the onset of these types of combined military and civilian approaches.

To read more about the militarization of aid in Afghanistan check out our September/October Washington Newsletter "Uphill for Peace" (link here ).

**Take Action**

The debate is not over about whether to send more troops to Afghanistan. Obama just won the Nobel Peace Prize and several key senators have issued critical statements (link: here ) on the wisdom of sending more troops. Now is a very important time to contact your senators--you can make a difference about whether the United States commits more resources to this war or begins to de-escalate the conflict.

Afghanistan: Take Two Minutes for Peace (link: here )

Urge your senators to insist on a new U.S. strategy in Afghanistan that includes a ceasefire, troop withdrawal, negotiations, and a new approach to development aid.

**More Resources**

"....estimates that only '$10 or $20' of every $100 reaches its intended recipients." U.S aid often misses targets in Afghanistan, by Reese Erlich here

The Wrong Question, by Caroline Wadham here

Special Report from U.S Institute of Peace:Preventing Violent Conflict: Assessing Progress, Meeting Challenges link: here

Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL)
245 2nd Street NE Washington, DC 20002 |
www.fcnl.org | or GO here PHONE: 1-800-630-1330 USA

8 comments:

Connie L. Nash said...

FCNL Asks Obama Not to Send More Troops to Afghanistan, link: http://action.fcnl.org/r/88330/58021/0

Read the Greater Middle East Diplomacy Update (link: http://action.fcnl.org/r/88331/58021/0) for more context on these issues. Sign up for monthly updates! (link: http://action.fcnl.org/r/88332/58021/0)

How does the Senate's Climate Bill Measure Up? http://action.fcnl.org/r/88333/58021/0

Connie L. Nash said...

Readers who want to work toward peace and not just read about the prismatic issues, cultues and people affected, please write letters now by the dozens to the leaders you believe will be most likely to listen.

Be sure to see the previous blogposts here for some ideas and models and make these YOUR letters.

ReeBz said...

How the letters can be written and to whom?

It is true that American soldiers have to face really very bad times in Afghanistan and they are suffering from many psychological diseases.Almost every soldier is mentally disturbed and they don't want to go for war in Afghanistan.

This simply shows at every stage that how many wrong decisions were made by US and still they are!

Connie L. Nash said...

many wrong decisions were made by US and still they are!

YES, ReeBz, you are so right...we are most of us who watch what goes on getting more and more fed up and surprised that Obama is going along with the tide and not standing against more war!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just added the simple way to do the letter to the top of this Post. If you have trouble doing this one, write me again & I'll try to find you another.

Thanx for your comment.

PS How about YOU writing a letter to America for me to post on my blogsite? If school and other activities allow and it will be empowering rather than upsetting?

ReeBz said...

Oh sure that's a nice idea, I'll be needing help of me elders and friends for this purpose, will try to keep it less upsetting. It will be good to have view point of a Pakistani at ur blogsite.

Connie L. Nash said...

However you want to write it is fine. What I meant is that by doing these actions even if they seem small - we feel more confident and empowered and a little less upset sometimes. But I really do like your passion and genuine experience as well.

I'm not good yet at messaging...sorry. Thanx for ALL...:)

ReeBz said...

Connie, why cant i see your letter at your blog anymore? have you deleted that post?

Connie L. Nash said...

i'm putting it back soon, ReeBz - I just wanted to have time to edit as it's too long & made mistakes...

thanx for asking...