19 Organizations: Do Not Arm Syrian Rebels

Last Updated on September 16, 2014.

Today, the Win Without War coalition and 18 other organizations submitted a joint letter urging Congressional leadership to OPPOSE proposals to train and arm Syrian Rebels.
September 16, 2014
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid                                       
522 Hart Senate Office Building                                             
Washington, DC 20510                                                            
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi
235 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Leader Reid and Leader Pelosi,
Congress and the American people must have a full, vigorous, and open debate on the proposal for a prolonged military intervention against ISIS (also sometimes called ISIL or Islamic State), before this war is escalated further.
In particular, we are deeply concerned over the proposed plan to arm and train Syrian rebels. This proposal is deeply controversial among lawmakers, experts, and advocates alike and both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have expressed their opposition to moving forward with either Title X authorization or additional funding. With recent, conflicting reports that some of the so-called “moderate” Syrian rebels that this proposal seeks to arm may have signed non-aggression pacts with ISIS, now is not the time to rush into a policy whose consequences remain so unknown.
Numerous reports have indicated that the White House has requested that authorization for this program be included in the must-pass continuing resolution currently before Congress. With Congress scheduled to be in session only a handful of days before recessing for the November elections, there is little time for the full and open debate such a significant change in policy demands.
For these reasons, we strongly urge you not to include any funding or authorization for the arming and training of Syrian rebels in the continuing resolution or via any other legislative vehicle that does not offer a full and open debate with opportunity for the American people to weigh in.
Center for International Policy
Church of the Brethren, Office of Public Witness
Conference of Major Superiors of Men

Democracy for America
Friends Committee on National Legislation
Iraq Veterans Against the War
Just Foreign Policy
Peace Action
Peace Action West
The United Methodist Church, General Board of Church and Society
United Church of Christ, Justice and Witness Ministries
United for Peace and Justice
U.S. Labor Against the War
Veterans For Peace
Win Without War
Women’s Action for New Directions

September 16, 2014