By David Swanson
Last June we were handed an opportunity to block the funding of our illegal, murderous, counterproductive, catastrophic, and hated wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The president insisted on an off-the-books “emergency supplemental” bill, and the Senate added an IMF bailout to the bill, leading all the Republicans in the House to commit what for years they’d called treason: they all voted No on war money.
So, we only needed 39 Democrats to vote No, and we could have stopped the thing, at least temporarily. We had a week-long knock-down drag-out fight, with the White House telling freshmen Democrats they would be “dead to us” if they didn’t vote Yes. And we still persuaded 32 Democrats to vote No.
Then we continued building opposition to the wars, and awareness of the need to choose between wars and jobs. But we had to hope that we would again be handed a “supplemental” vote and that again some crazy scheme would be found to get all the Republicans to vote No. If these wishes could be granted, then we would only have to find 40 Democrats to stand with the majority of Americans, soldiers, Iraqis, and Afghans. Otherwise, we’d need 218 congress members.
Our wishes have come true. President Obama has insisted on another “supplemental” this spring for $33 billion. And funding to close Guantanamo and move “the Terrorists” to “the Homeland” has been added into the bill.
Of course, the Democrats think this will force the Republicans to vote for closing Gitmo. Democratic loyalists and president worshippers are celebrating this genius stroke, oblivious to the fact that the funding of wars will destroy our nation along with those the wars are waged against, nevermind exactly where we imprison people. In reality, this maneuver will force the Republicans to vote against the war funding. And that will give us a chance.
We only need 40 No votes from Democrats in the House if the Republicans are voting No, and we can get them. Here’s the whip list: http://defundwar.org Have at it!