December 13, 2006

Stopping the Occupation: "The Appeal for Redress" Is Key

Third straight post on the anti-war/anti-occupation movement. I hope you'll bear with us here at Fire on the Mountain, as we go from march routes for the extremely important January 27 March on Congress to the "mobilizable moment" represented by the upcoming 3000th US troop death to, now, the Appeal for Redress.

Like most people in this country, you probably have not heard of the Appeal for Redress. It is critical that the low profile of this oddly named document be raised.

It is a simple statement:

As a patriotic American proud to serve the nation in uniform, I respectfully urge my political leaders in Congress to support the prompt withdrawal of all American military forces and bases from Iraq. Staying in Iraq will not work and is not worth the price. It is time for U.S. troops to come home.

It is based on a simple premise:

While serving soldiers have their democratic rights severely curtailed, the Constitution guarantees them the right to appeal to their elected senators and representatives in the national government for the redress of grievances.

It is a simple tactical masterstroke:

By formulating it as a joint appeal and submitting it in public, these young men and women have taken the first big collective step by active duty military personnel in this war to protest being used in an unjust and unjustifiable occupation.

This is not the rebellion-riddled military of the Vietnam era, at least not yet. Different times, different conditions. But the High Command keeps talking nervously about how, if something doesn't change but quick, the Army, the National Guard system, and so on will be "broken." Believe that they are watching as hundreds of troops sign on to the Appeal for Redress, watching and worrying.

All anti-war activists should add this valuable tool to the kit we are using to fight for an end to the occupation, and should support the troops who are signing and distributing it. The more attention it gets here, the more attention it will get in The Sandbox. The more troops hear about it, the more will sign on and the bigger the impact will be.

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