[Two sources, a message to the Minneapolis-5th
District Green Party listserv, and Jay Pond's web site.]
[Note that Jay qualifies his "Out Now" position, saying that
he is for an immediate **partial** withdrawal of US troops, a smart redeployment of US troops within Iraq, and an eventual
withdrawal of all US troops within a time-frame to be determined by the UN and the US- sponsored Iraqi government.]
Pond Responds - Iraq and Immigration
[26 August 2006]
From Minneapolis-5th District Green Party listserv
I'd like to respond to recent interpretations of my positions on withdrawal from Iraq and on immigration. My positions
are firmly grounded in the 10 key values of the Green Party, which are my personal values, as well.
I do believe we
should immediately begin withdrawing our troops from Iraq. The idea that we should take every one of our troops out tomorrow
makes great rhetoric, but I am trying to acknowledge the reality and complexity of the situation, while maintaining our ideals
and keeping the value of nonviolence at the forefront.
As a nation we've made a huge mistake. We must apologize to
the world and ask for help and recommendations from the people of Iraq as well as the rest of the international community
as how to best make amends.
We must take responsibility to rebuild Iraq and restore peace if Iraq wants our help. I
would like to see the UN take the lead in these efforts, because I agree that it is an imperialistic attitude to assume that
the US is best suited to do this. If our help is desired we need to take responsibility for the mess we've created and provide
it. Thus, I think Iraq in conjunction with the UN should set the timeline for US withdrawal. It would be easy to make up a
deadline and say that I think we should be out in one month, or three months, or six months, but there simply aren't such
easy answers. I stand firmly by my call for an immediate global cease fire, and by my view that we should not maintain a permanent
military presence in Iraq.
In both Vietnam and Iraq the US has acted imperialistically. Surely I can draw that parallel
without being thought to advocate imperialism. I am not in favor of US imperialism in Iraq or anywhere else.
POND'S WEB SITE
[Jay Pond qualifies his "out now" position by calling for a redeployment of troops, a partial withdrawal
of troops, and a congressional resolution that promises the US will not stay in Iraq forever]
Yes, there is a way out
of the mess in Iraq, but only if we take steps now. It is time that Congress consider a sane approach to this insane war!
Here are the best suggestions I've heard brought to the table:
1. Reduce number of U.S.
troops and end offensive operations
As a first step to withdrawal, the U.S. should
declare an immediate cease-fire and reduce the number of troops deployed in Iraq. Continuing offensive operations will only
escalate the violence and make Iraq less secure and less safe. The U.S. should pull troops out of major cities and shift troop
strength to stem the flow of foreign fighters and money used to fund the resistance. If Iraqi security forces need help maintaining
order, they can invite in outside forces.
2. Declare that the U.S. will not maintain a permanent military presence
Congress needs to affirm its commitment to a
responsible withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq. A congressional resolution clarifying that the U.S. has no plan to control
Iraq's oil, to establish permanent military bases in Iraq, or to suppress Muslims, would deprive insurgents of their central
organizing message. Without such a resolution, Iraqis will assume that the U.S. intends to make the occupation a permanent
feature of Iraqi life.
Full text at