Today, Win Without War and 14 other national organizations sent a letter to the Senate about Afghanistan.
November 20, 2013
We urge you to support Amendment 2343 to the National Defense Authorization Act, sponsored by Senators Merkley (D-OR), Paul (R-KY), Lee (R-UT), Manchin (D-WV), Wyden (D-OR), Harkin (D-IA), Tester (D-MT), and Begich (D-AK). This measure urges explicit congressional authorization if U.S. troops are to remain in Afghanistan after December 2014.
In his first term, President Obama pledged to end the U.S. combat mission in Afghanistan by December 2014. However, there have been numerous reports that several thousand or more troops will remain in Afghanistan beyond that date.
The Afghan people are having a say in continued American troops in that country through a loya jirga. The American people, through Congress, should also have a say.
The amendment would provide a valuable avenue for Congressional involvement in the decision-making process, allowing for much-needed debate on any continued U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan.
Now in its thirteenth year, the war in Afghanistan has claimed the lives of over 2,000 service members, wounded over 19,000, and cost American taxpayers close to $600 billion.
American men and women in uniform have sacrificed greatly in Afghanistan over the past twelve years. Any decision to leave troops in Afghanistan after the official end to combat operations should be accompanied by robust congressional debate.
We strongly support the Merkley amendment, and urge you to do the same.
Center for International Policy
Council for a Livable World
Fellowship of Reconciliation
Friends Committee on National Legislation
Just Foreign Policy
Peace Action West
United for Peace and Justice
Win Without War
Women’s Action for New Directions