On Thursday, the Friends Committee on National Legislation issued an action alert appealing for citizens to address letters to their legislators in support of the de-escalation of the Iran crisis. -- Links facilitating messages to senators and representatives, as well as letters to the editor, are featured below. -- The FCNL is certainly right when it says that "the crisis is not over." -- Despite the recent reassuring headlines, there are many signs that the current diplomatic phase is part of a well-planned campaign for mobilizing public opinion for war against Iran. -- The vigilance of the informed public is greatly needed, and it is to this end that United for Peace of Pierce County is in the midst of two "Iran Education Months" (May-June 2006). -- See here for a schedule of events....
Legislative action message
IRAN: SUPPORT A STEP BACK FROM WAR
Friends Committee on National Legislation
June 8, 2006
In the past few days, the U.S. and the Iranian governments have halted their mutual march toward war. But there are still voices arguing for confrontation, not cooperation. Members of Congress need to hear from constituents that war with Iran is not the answer.
This week, the European Union (EU) proposed a framework for negotiations to defuse the escalating crisis over Iranian nuclear development. The Bush administration, under domestic and international pressure, has been forced to pursue diplomacy over military threats and accept the EU proposal. The cause of human security has a victory -- for now. Quakers and others who oppose war have reason to celebrate this step. But many more steps will have to be taken to realize the peace-building potential of the EU proposal.
The EU proposal offers economic normalization with Iran in return for comprehensive surveillance of its nuclear facilities by international inspectors. Iran would be allowed to build additional nuclear reactors and enrich uranium for its civilian nuclear program.
The proposal also includes support for a weapons of mass destruction-free zone in the Middle East. The EU secured the support of Israel for the package before it was delivered to Iran.
The EU offer, backed by the U.S., and the conciliatory words coming out of Tehran are encouraging. Through public pressure we have at least stopped, if not reversed, the march toward war.
However, the crisis is not over. The deal with Iran is not final yet. Hawks in both Washington and Tehran are trying to undermine this diplomatic solution. Already some voices in Washington are denouncing the carrots-and-sticks package, arguing for a sticks-only approach.
TAKE ACTION NOW
Members of Congress, in particular Republican senators, have influence over the direction the administration takes in solving the Iranian crisis. They are listening to constituents to gauge what their own positions should be. You have an opportunity to influence those decisions.
Write a short letter to your representative and senators supporting diplomacy over military threats. You can find a sample message and contact your members of Congress directly on FCNL's website.
Modify your letter to refer to news coverage of this agreement and submit it as a letter to the editor to your local newspaper. You can find a sample message and submit your letter directly through FCNL's website.
The looming U.S.-Iranian war is a war that can be prevented. However, this opportunity may last only a few weeks. Now is the time to state the truth that "War is not the answer."