If you agree with the statement below, please
send it to your representatives in Congress by following this link:
Chris Snively VFP National Office
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
To All Members of the United States Congress,
In the past five years, since the horrific
attacks of September 11, 2001, the people of our
nation have been told time and time again that
the world has changed, we have a new enemy and we
must change to fight that enemy. This argument
has been presented over and over to justify
deviations from and at times dismissal of our nation’s basic ideals.
Veterans For Peace and millions of other U.S.
citizens believe the time has come to return to
our nation’s core beliefs as called for by our
Declaration of Independence and Constitution, the
rule of law, justice and the recognition of all
people’s unalienable human and civil rights.
Recent news reports indicate that the Bush
administration is seeking legislation to
eliminate key elements of the War Crimes Act.
Veterans For Peace believes such an effort is an
attempt by administration officials to protect
themselves from prosecution, even as they
prosecute enlisted men and women for actions
committed under their command in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.
It is the highest form of hypocrisy to claim to
support our troops while allowing the policy
makers and planners of a war of choice, that we
believe is illegal, immoral and unjust, to change
existing law to protect themselves from
prosecution for committing war crimes after
ordering the troops to war. It is obvious that
these officials are trying to change the law
because they believe they have broken the law.
How convenient for them that they have the power
to persuade you to protect them. How inconvenient
for the soldier on the ground who must follow their orders.
Veterans For Peace vehemently insists that Congress
(1) Reject any effort to weaken the 1996 War Crimes Act (USC §2441), and
(2) Based on USC §2441 and Article II of the Constitution, which makes
treaties ratified by the U.S. Senate the supreme
law of the land, initiate impeachment proceedings
against President Bush and Vice-President Cheney
for the war crimes they have committed and for
the treaties they have violated by the invasion
and occupation of Iraq; including, but by no
means limited to, waging a war of aggression,
crimes against peace, and war crimes.
Veterans For Peace reminds Congress that the
Uniform Code of Military Justice already applies
the Geneva Conventions to everyone in the U.S.
military. The purpose of the War Crimes Act is to
provide the same accountability to the military's
civilian leaders. Gutting the War Crimes Act will
exempt high government officials from the very
war crimes charges they are now leveling against
enlisted men and women and in some cases asking for the death penalty.
It is easy to claim adherence to high ideals in
times of prosperity and relative comfort. The
test is in time of challenge and adversity. We
face such times today. Will we live up to what we
claim to be; land of the free and home of the
brave? The American people as a whole must answer
these questions but you are in elected positions to take a lead.
Hold the Bush administration accountable for its
actions. Support our troops. Do not create a
double standard, one for the troops another for
the administration. We have no Kings in the
United States. No one is above the law. We have a
President and he is a servant of the people. Even in times of war.
David Cline, President
Veterans For Peace
cc: All members of the U.S. Armed Forces
All the American people