Washington, D.C. — December 19, 2018 — In response to President Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. forces from Syria, Paul Kawika Martin, Senior Director for Policy and Political Affairs at Peace Action, released the following statement:
“President Trump is absolutely right to withdraw U.S. forces from Syria. President Obama deployed U.S. soldiers to Syria in violation of international law, and the ongoing U.S. presence there only serves to prolong the war and fuel the risk of confrontation with Russia, Iran, and other parties to the conflict.
“Withdrawal from the war does not mean the U.S. can’t contribute to a better future for the people of Syria. The U.S. can and should pursue a more active role in negotiations aimed at securing a political solution and a lasting peace in Syria, and should step up funding for humanitarian aid. President Trump should also rethink his administration’s callous, discriminatory refugee policies and immediately increase the number of refugees allowed into the United States rather than continuing to shut our doors to Syrians fleeing a war that the U.S. has played such a significant role in.
“As long as Trump is rethinking the U.S. role in Syria, he should also move to withdraw U.S. forces from the 17-year-old war in Afghanistan, and from the catastrophic Saudi-led war in Yemen. The U.S. has been waging endless war for a generation, wasting trillions of dollars and costing countless lives, and we’re no better off for it. We need a security strategy rooted in peace and cooperation rather than death and destruction. In the coming year, the new Congress should move to reclaim its long-lost authority on war so that these critical decisions are vetted by the people’s representatives instead of left in the hands of one person.”
Founded in 1957, Peace Action (formerly SANE/Freeze), the United States’ largest peace and disarmament organization, with over 100,000 paid members and nearly 100 chapters in 36 states, works to abolish nuclear weapons, promote government spending priorities that support human needs, encourage real security through international cooperation and human rights and support nonmilitary solutions to international conflicts. The public may learn more and take action at www.PeaceAction.org.