United for Peace of Pierce County (WA) is calling for a protest demonstration at S. 38th St. & S. Steele St. (near Borders) in Tacoma, Washington, on the day after any U.S. military escalation in Afghanistan is announced.[1]  --   Please help spread the word.  --  In a statement adopted Thurs., Nov. 19, 2009, UFPPC joined United for Peace and Justice and Veterans for Peace in saying that Americans should speak out against the escalation in Afghanistan and communicate their opposition to the White House.[2] ...


WHAT: Protest demonstration against U.S. military escalation in Afghanistan
WHO: United for Peace of Pierce County, supported by Veterans for Peace, United for Peace and Justice, and all those opposing the war
WHEN: At 5:00 p.m. the day after the announcement of any military escalation in Afghanistan by the U.S.
WHERE: South 38th St. & South Steele St. in Tacoma (near Borders)


[UFPPC statement]


United for Peace of Pierce County (WA)
November 19, 2009

U.S. disengagement from Afghanistan is long overdue.  The American presence has no plausible mission that is related to U.S. national security, yet U.S. forces have been engaged there for more than eight years.

On March 27, President Barack Obama said that "the core goal of the U.S. must be to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat al Qaeda and its safe havens in Pakistan, and to prevent their return to Pakistan or Afghanistan."  But on Sept. 11, 2009, General Stanley McChrystal, the commander of U.S. and NATO forces, told reporters:  "I do not see indications of a large al-Qaeda presence in Afghanistan now."

One day earlier, on Sept. 10, 2009, Matthew H. Hoh, a high-level U.S. diplomat in Afghanistan, protested the incoherence of U.S. policy there.  The former marine wrote in his letter of resignation that "I find specious the reasons we ask for bloodshed and sacrifice from our young men in Afghanistan.  If honest, our stated strategy of securing Afghanistan to prevent al-Qaeda resurgence or regrouping would require us to additionally invade and occupy western Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, etc.  Our presence in Afghanistan has only increased destabilization and insurgency in Pakistan . . . to follow the logic of our stated goals we should garrison Pakistan, not Afghanistan."  As for the Taliban movement, it is not a terrorist threat to the U.S.

A few days ago Pierce County residents had a chance to talk with another expert warning against escalation in Afghanistan:  Ray McGovern, a 27-year veteran of the CIA.  In his talk on Nov. 15 at the University of Washington-Tacoma, cosponsored by United for Peace of Pierce County, McGovern said that Western military forces are in Afghanistan because of an interest in controlling the flow of energy resources from the Caspian Basin, where enormous natural gas reserves wait to be tapped.

Pepe Escobar, a Brazilian journalist who has followed what he calls the New Great Game in Central Asia for almost two decades, also sees in U.S. Afghanistan policy a "high-stakes, hardcore geopolitical game that follows what flows along the pipelines of the planet."  "Never reading the words 'Afghanistan' and 'oil' in the same sentence is still a source of endless amusement for me," wrote Pepe Escobar in Asia Times Online Mar. 26, 2009.

We are not amused.  We join Veterans for Peace and the national coalition of which we are a member, United for Peace and Justice, in calling on you to tell President Barack Obama that you're against widening the conflict in Afghanistan.  Call the White House at 202-456-1111.  Let your voice be heard!  Be sure to mention your intention to demonstrate your opposition to a U.S. military escalation should one be announced.