CFT Resolution on US War in Iraq
The California Federation of Teachers Executive Council passed the attached resolution on January 7, 2005. It is based on labor council resolutions in Alameda and South Bay.
WHEREAS the Bush Administration carried out an invasion of Iraq using the pretense that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, and therefore posed an immediate threat to the security of the United States and still no evidence has been found that Iraq possessed such weapons or the capability to deploy them; and
WHEREAS the administration has embraced a new and dangerous path of preemptive war without an imminent threat to the United States that has made us less, not more secure, that has stoked rather than reduced the threat of terrorism and that has put Iraqis on a path to civil war while bringing them no closer to a democratic society; and
WHEREAS the war and military occupation of Iraq have cost the lives of over 1300 U.S. troops, the wounding and disabling of thousands more, Iraqi civilian deaths estimated at over100,000 men women and children, casualties among soldiers of other nations, and the devastation of the entire country; and
WHEREAS we recognize the courage of U.S. military personnel, many of whom are members or family of members of our unions. They have faced extraordinary danger and have made huge sacrifices in this war; we now want them to come home; and bringing them home is the best means of protecting them; and
WHEREAS the Bush administration has used the Iraq war and national security hysteria as a pretext to create a climate of fear at home, to restrict civil liberties, and to attack the rights of workers and unions; and
WHEREAS, the war and occupation have cost over two hundred billion dollars, leading directly to cuts in domestic social and human services, education and even benefits for the very veterans of this and other conflicts, while war spending has lined the pockets of immensely wealthy anti-labor corporations; and
WHEREAS, the Bush administration has announced the wholesale privatization of Iraqi factories and workplaces, and kept in force a ban on unions in the public sector, to benefit corporate investors at the expense of the Iraqi people; and
WHEREAS, the Bush administration has divided us here at home while inspiring fear and distrust among other nations of the world community, and has squandered the unity and friendship our country enjoyed in the aftermath of September 11; and
WHEREAS, five national unions (SEIU, AFSCME, CWA, APWU, GCIU), and numerous state labor federations, central labor councils, local unions and other labor bodies representing millions of union members have passed resolutions calling for our troops to be brought home; and
WHEREAS, AFL-CIO President John Sweeney has asked the labor movement at every level to immediately discuss and pinpoint the important issues, challenges and problems we confront for consideration at the upcoming AFL-CIO Executive Council meeting, and for the national convention in July, and given that the issues of war and peace and destruction of the social safety net are paramount among them;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the California Federation of Teachers calls on President Bush to bring our troops home from Iraq and reject the philosophy of pre-emptive war without a clear and imminent threat to the United States; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT the California Federation of Teachers calls on President Bush to provide adequate veterans' benefits, adequately protect our current troops, and otherwise meet the needs of returning veterans, and our people in general, to jobs, education and health care; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT the California Federation of Teachers calls on the National AFL-CIO to demand an immediate end to the U.S. occupation of Iraq, the return of U.S. troops to their homes and families, and the reordering of national priorities toward peace and meeting human needs; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED THAT California Federation of Teachers submits this resolution to the California Labor Federation and to the American Federation of Teachers urging their concurrence, immediate action , and its distribution to all their affiliates for their concurrence and immediate action.


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