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No Money for Afghanistan escalation! Stop the Attack on Kandahar!

This month, Congress will decide whether to fund continued escalation of the war, even as the Obama administration faces a turning point in Afghanistan strategy.
 
President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan is in Washington May 10-13 to seek U.S. permission to negotiate with the Taliban and other armed insurgents. But the U.S. plans instead to fight the insurgents in Kandahar this summer, hoping to put itself in a stronger negotiating position. With scares like the attempted Times Square car bomb, the administration's team may also reason that its political prospects in the fall elections will be better if Obama has shown himself to be a strong and successful military leader. 
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Please call your Representative and Senators Kerry and Brown today and ask them to vote against escalating the Afghanistan war. 202-224-3121
 
The "make-or-break offensive of the war" is scheduled for June in Kandahar, a city of 1 million and the spiritual home of the Taliban. February's Marjah offensive left locals feeling more negative about NATO forces than before the operation. The potential bloodshed caused by an attack of 23,000 troops is enormous. Tribal leaders and the public in Kandahar are strongly opposed to the forthcoming attack.
 
National Call-in Days on Afghanistan - May 11-14
 
Secretary Gates asked Congress to approve by the end of May a $33 billion supplemental request to pay for the 30,000 additional troops President Obama ordered to Afghanistan in December, and who are now starting to arrive for the offensive. Congress must take a stand and refuse to fund the war.
 
Contact your Representative and Senators and ask them to vote against the Afghanistan Supplemental appropriation. Also, ask them to co-sponsor the McGovern-Feingold bill (HR.5015, S.3197) requiring the President to provide a plan and timetable for "the safe, orderly and expeditious redeployment of US troops from Afghanistan."    So far, Reps. Delahunt, Capuano, Frank, and Olver have signed on to support HR.5015, while Reps. Tierney, Tsongas, Neal, Markey, and Lynch have yet to announce their positions.
 
Congressional Switchboard: 202-224-3121
 
With your help, the number of House co-sponsors of McGovern-Feingold bill has reached 82 and is growing. We hope that the increasing number of co-sponsors will generate long overdue Congressional debate and attention to ending the war -starting with saving the people of Kandahar and their U.S. occupiers from additional casualties this summer.
 
Brown Bag VigilsThen, join a Brown Bag Lunch Vigil in downtown Boston, Lowell, or Worcester Wednesday, May 19, or Falmouth May 21.  Get out in the streets, and tell passersby and Congressional staff that the war in Afghanistan must end!
 
Please share your results with ujpcoalition@gmail.com.
 
Combat Anti-Muslim, Anti-Immigrant Hysteria
 
Following the failed car bombing attempt in Times Square by a Pakistani-American and the anti-immigrant law in Arizona, there has been big upswing in public fear, and mistrust and blaming of Muslim people and immigrants. We are hearing that familiar drumbeat, the one that makes the burden and the costs of war seem inevitable. 
 
But we know better. Take some time this week to rebuild links with Muslim communities in your area. American Muslim Voice is a California-based website with links to ten major national organizations and networks, and check out Link TV for media that promotes positive images.
 
Keep our youth from feeding the machine. Stop the militarization of schools and young people. Support youth in finding alternatives to the military.  The National Network Opposing the Militarization of Youth is a good place to start for ideas, strategies and to connect with local groups already doing counter-recruitment work.
 
The times are perilous, but the public has grave doubts about the U.S. war in Afghanistan. By explaining the truth, we can turn opinion decisively against this war and bring its end closer!
 
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