For Immediate Release
Mike Ferner 419-729-7273
Michael McPhearson 314-303-8874
At the End of the 6th Year of U.S. Occupation of Iraq, A Veteran’s Group Says The End of 2011 is Too Long
WASHINGTON - Veterans For Peace objects to President Obama's plan to keep troops in Iraq until 2011. “Beside
the suffering and death caused by prolonging these wars, America simply can no longer afford
the cost of empire,” commented Mike Ferner, the group’s National President. A long time critic
of the invasion and occupation of Iraq, VFP calls for President Obama to bring all the troops
home now. The organization’s consistent position has been that the presence of U.S. soldiers
only ensures there will be violent resistance from Iraqis. The Administration’s plans to leave
50,000 “non-combat” troops in Iraq will not ensure less violence; it will guarantee the deaths of
more U.S. troops and Iraqis at the hands of U.S. service members.
March 19-21, to mark the end of the 6th year of the occupation, Veterans For Peace members will
participate in various events across the U.S. including the March on the Pentagon scheduled for
Saturday. They are also urging their members to write and call Congress and the Obama
Administration to register their dissatisfaction with the President’s timetable.
Ferner went on to say, “Barack Obama became president in part because millions of voters were
sick of these wars and wanted them stopped, period. The People of Iraq can handle their affairs.
They have proven that over thousands of years. It is time for U.S. to pull out all troops.”
Violence in Iraq has lessened and sectarian divisions appear to be coming together, but military
and Administration officials remain cautious that violence could escalate at anytime.
“U.S. policy claims to keep troops in Iraq to ensure stability,” continued Ferner. “With violence
down, the President is taking over 2-1/2 years to leave. If violence rises, will plans change to
stay? Either way, U.S. policy keeps troops in Iraq. This is not the sentiment of the majority of
people in the U.S. or Iraq. We want all the troops to come home now!” Ferner concluded.
Veterans For Peace is a national organization founded in 1985. It is structured around a national office in Saint Louis, MO and comprised of members across the country organized in chapters or as at-large members. The organization includes men and women veterans of all eras and duty stations including from the Spanish Civil War (1936-39), World War II, the Korean, Vietnam, Gulf and current Iraq wars as well as other conflicts. Our collective experience tells us wars are easy to start and hard to stop and that those hurt are often the innocent. Thus, other means of problem solving are necessary.