General Resolution on Ending the U.S. Occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan

Approved by Faith in Action at a Town Hall Meeting, January 31, 2010 

The congregation of the Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Santa Monica proposes that the Unitarian UniversalistAssociation, at its June, 2010 GeneralAssembly, adopt the following General Resolution on ending the U.S. occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan:

2010 General Resolution

BE IT RESOLVED that the 2010 GeneralAssembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association

l. Urges the government of the United States to immediately cease combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, to withdraw all troops and civilian support personnel from Iraq and Afghanistan as rapidly as logistically possible, and in the meantime withdraw them to secure bases within those countries.

2. Reaffirms resolutions, including those of 2006 and 2007, urging "all Unitarian Universalist leaders at the international, national, district, and congregational levels to support individual and congregational participation in interfaith campaigns to end U.S. military involvement in Iraq."

3. Urges all Unitarian Universalist leaders to do the same to end U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan as well.

In his pastoral letter of March 14, 2008, t,hen UUA President Rev. William G. Sinkford said, "We know the invasion of Iraq and the occupation were based on lies.

. . . We know that if there had been no oil beneath those sands, and no oil in the region, this war would never have taken place."

The ObamaAdministration's plan to end U.S. combat missions in Iraq byAugust 31, 2010, and to remove all U.S. troops from Iraq by the end of 2011 (see, even if it were to happen on schedule, and even if it were to include civilian support personnel, prolongs rather than ends the damage. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have already died in this war, as have over 4,300 U.S. troops and over 300 troops from other coalition members. Far more have been seriously wounded, physically and/or mentally. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been wasted. The time to end this carnage is not in future years and months, but now.

One reason given for reducing the U.S. military commitment to Iraq is to increase the troops, material, and funds available to prosecute the war in Afghanistan. But this war, too, is based on lies. From 1979 to 1989 the U.S. supported the Taliban and other Islamic fundamentalists in Afghanistan with funds and arms. Then the U.S. tried to make a deal with the Taliban to build a pipeline across Afghanistan to provide an outlet for Turkmenistan oil and gas which would replace the route through Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Russia, and which would skirt to the east of Iran.

The U.S. still hopes to build this pipeline. To make this possible by "securing Afghanistan," the U.S.collaborates with Hamid Karzu and other warlords, in the name of "democracy" and "rights for women." These corrupt leaders have no regard for democracy or rights for women. According to Human Rights Watch, August 13, 2009, "'Karzaihas made an unthinkable deal to sell Afghan women out in return for the support of fundamentalists in the August 20 election,' said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. 'The law gives a husband the right to withdraw basic maintenance from his wife, including food, if she refuses to obey his sexual demands. It grants guardianship of children exclusively to their fathers and grandfathers. It requires women to get permission from their husbands to work. It also effectively allows a rapist to avoid prosecution by paylng "blood money" to a girl who was injured when he raped her."' (If the U.S. government were truly concerned with women's rights, perhaps it would invade Saudi Arabia.)

The wars in and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan are part of the ongoing worldwide competition among the major capitalist powers (including the U.S., China, Russia, Iapan, and the European Union) for resources, markets, and investment opportunities. Every drop ofblood shed for such a cause is an unspeakable tragedy we must do everything in our power to end.

-- Peace & Ciuil Liberties Committee