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DPJC Position Statement

No U.S. Intervention in Venezuela

Our position statement on the situation in Venezuela from the Human Rights and Justice Committee of the Dallas Peace and Justice Center.

The Dallas Peace and Justice Center notes with great concern and alarm the deteriorating political, economic and humanitarian crisis in Venezuela and calls for de-escalation of tensions through peaceful negotiations. We unequivocally reject any attempts by outside forces such as the United States to forcibly remove from office the government of Nicolas Maduro. We also assert that bloodshed must be completely averted.

We agree with Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) who has said that while "Maduro is an authoritarian leader who has presided over unfair elections, failed economic policies, extrajudicial killings by police, food shortages and cronyism with military leaders," U.S. intervention in Venezuela's internal political affairs will only "make a bad situation even worse. A long history of U.S. political and military interventions has not only destabilized many Latin American countries but also created a profound mistrust towards the United States. This has strengthened Maduro's popularity and complicated the present situation. A proper relationship between the United States and its neighbors to the south must start with mutual respect and focus on ways to help economies grow and prosper.

We urge National Security Adviser John Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and newly appointed Venezuela envoy Elliot Abrams—all of whom have backed authoritarians leaders, death squads, and illegal wars throughout their careers in government---not to push for regime change and instead back regional dialogue initiatives such as the one proposed by Mexico and Uruguay.

It is entirely the prerogative of the noble people of Venezuela to decide the future of their revolution, not any foreign power. All that can come from outside intervention is more chaos and crisis, and God forbid, the misery and suffering of war.

 

 

DPJC Position Statement

DPJC Statement on President Trump's Decision to Withdraw U.S Troops from Syria

The Dallas Peace and Justice Center applauds President Trump's decision to completely withdraw U.S. troops from Syria accompanied by a drawdown of troop levels in Afghanistan. We are hopeful the Trump administration will empower diplomats at the U.S State Department, led by Sec. Mike Pompeo, to maximize the considerable “soft power" the United States wields to bring all warring parties and regional powers to the negotiating table to craft a durable peace. Concurrently, a massive humanitarian and developmental aid program must be launched immediately for beleaguered Syrian and Afghan civilians emerging from prolonged strife and devastation. 

An engaged United States that relies less on military solutions and more on diplomacy could be a powerful force for good in the world. Our knee-jerk response to an international conflict must not rely solely upon our formidable military prowess.  We are at our best and the world benefits most when we remain true to our highest ideals of participatory governance, respect for the rule of law, an independent judiciary, respect for human rights and dignity, and a free press. Recognizing that people worldwide aspire for the same freedoms, rights and ideals we take for granted lays a framework for collaboration, negotiation, and mutually beneficial solutions leading to peace and justice.

 


Action Alert:

End America's Murderous Role in Yemen!

We take inspiration from the recent actions of average Americans who spoke truth to power in Washington during the Kavanaugh hearings!

But while we have all been glued to the drama unfolding in the nation's capital, America has been supporting war crimes in Yemen.

For three years Saudi warplanes, with U.S. military help, have carried out a relentless campaign bombing civilians, destroying infrastructure and causing starvation - all war crimes. On Aug. 9th the Saudis bombed a school bus killing 40 kids ages 6-13. A comprehensive air, sea and land blockade by the Saudi led coalition has placed 8 million Yemenis one step away from starvation while 1 million suffer due to a cholera outbreak because of contaminated drinking water. The UN has declared Yemen the worst humanitarian disaster in the world.

Congress must immediately act to rein in U.S. military support for Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Some of our allies in Congress are reviving the effort to invoke the War Powers Act for Congress to vote on whether the U.S. is authorized to continue its support for the war in Yemen.

In the House, Representatives Ro Khanna (D-CA), Mark Pocan (D-WI), and Adam Smith (D-WA) are leading the charge and Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) are echoing this charge in the Senate.

We would like you to call your representatives today and ask them to cosponsor and support:H.Con.Res 138, the War Powers Resolution to end the U.S. role in the war in Yemen.

Here's all you need to do:

1) Call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121.

2) Follow instructions to reach your Representative in the House of Representatives, and then say (in your own words to the extent possible):

3) My name is ______________, and I'm a constituent from [YOUR CITY]. I'm calling to urge Representative ____________ to cosponsor H.Con.Res 138, the War Powers Resolution on the U.S. role in the war in Yemen. It is time for Congress to take back its constitutional power in authorizing U.S. wars. Please, co-sponsor the War Powers Resolution to end the U.S. role in the war in Yemen.


DPJC Position Statement

Reaffirming Our Commitment to the Elimination of All Nuclear Weapons
August 6, 2018

In recognition of the Hiroshima bombing, the Board of Directors of the Dallas Peace & Justice Center wishes to reaffirm our commitment to the elimination of all nuclear weapons. August 6, 2018 marks the 73th anniversary of the first nuclear weapon used on a civilian population. In the blink of an eye, tens of thousands of people died, an entire civilian population destroyed.

Today, there are thousands of nuclear weapons on this planet, many that are hundreds of times more powerful than that first devastating bomb. Each of these bombs is capable of killing possibly millions of people, so the combined force is clearly enough to kill the earth's entire population. The possibility of wiping out not just the human population, but every living thing on this planet, exists right here today.

The Dallas Peace & justice Center knows that violence only begets more violence, that weapons beget more weapons, that the proliferation of nuclear weapons does not bring peace to the world, only propagates the myth that conflict is solved by use of force. The simple truth is that the more nuclear weapons there are, the more likely they will be used. The only way to prevent their use is to totally eliminate them. We, the people, have the right to ask that these weapons be eliminated, never to be used by anyone.

We support and envision a world without nuclear weapons, where people resolve differences through nonviolent means, where our collective wealth is spent on education and creating a culture of peace, rather than an arsenal of destruction. We see the first step in achieving this vision is for our government, and the governments of the world, to live up to their commitments to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and begin today to dismantle and eliminate ALL nuclear weapons.

Will you join us in this endeavor? Would you be willing to write to the representatives of the people and to the leaders of our governments? Would you be willing to get involved with a petition signing; to join and support an organization that endorses peace? And first and foremost, remember "Peace Begins With Me." BE an active instrument of peace.


Len Ellis
As a member of, and representing, the Board of Directors,
Dallas Peace and Justice Center

 

 

 

DPJC Position Statement

DPJC Reaction to the Supreme Court Decision on the Muslim Travel Ban
June 26, 2018

The Dallas Peace and Justice Center unequivocally condemns the Supreme Court decision to uphold President Trump's travel ban that barred travelers from five mainly Muslim majority countries to enter the United States. In a 5-4 decision, the court wrote in its majority decision that the president's proclamation was "squarely within the scope of Presidential authority under the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA)." The travel ban will effectively bar travelers from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and Libya from entering the United States. Writing for the majority, Chief Justice John Roberts declared, "the president has extraordinary powers to set immigration policy" and "the INA exudes deference to the president."

But Jose Espericueta, Co-Chair of the DPJC's Human Rights Committee said, "the travel ban is counter-productive, immoral, and at its heart un-American. Despite Chief Justice Roberts' opinion, there is little visible reason to separate this ban from the president's past anti-Muslim rhetoric. Sadly, this emboldens the president to continue abusing the language of terrorism and security as a justification for anti-immigrant policies. Now more than ever it is our responsibility to work to preserve the United States as a refuge and beacon of hope for those seeking the American dream."

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, in a written dissent, cited Trump's inflammatory rhetoric about Muslims to compare the "stark parallels" between the majority opinion and one of the court's most shameful moments, "Korematsu v. U.S.," the decision that upheld the internment of Japanese Americans. She further wrote, "a reasonable observer would conclude that the Proclamation was motivated by anti-Muslim animus. The majority holds otherwise by ignoring facts, misconstruing our legal precedent and turning a blind eye to the pain and suffering the Proclamation inflicts upon countless families and individuals, many of whom are American citizens."

DPJC activist Hadi Jawad said, "The decision will help advance the narrative of terror groups like ISIS that the U.S is at war against Islam when the truth is that America has historically been a welcoming nation. Now the high court has issued a proclamation that attacks the essence of America."

 

 

 

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