Yesterday, I wrote about the terrible economic costs of the war. And, lo and behold, yesterday, the progressives in the House announced legislation to end the war. The bill, entitled "The Bring Our Troops Home and Sovereignty of Iraq Restoration Act" would:
1. Withdraw all U.S. troops and military contractors from Iraq within six months from date of enactment.
2. Prohibit any further funding to deploy, or continue to deploy U.S. troops in Iraq. The bill does, however, allow for funding to be used, as needed, to ensure a safe withdrawal of all US military personnel and contractors, diplomatic consultations. Funding may also be used for the increased training and equipping of Iraqi and international security forces.
3. Accelerate, during the six month transition, training of a permanent Iraqi security force.
4. Authorize, if requested by the Iraqi government, U.S. support for an international stabilization force. Such a force would be funded for no longer than two years, and be combined with economic and humanitarian assistance.
5. Guarantee full health care funding, including mental health, for U.S. veterans of military operations in Iraq and other conflicts.
6. Rescind the Congressional Authorization for the War in Iraq.
7. Prohibit the construction of permanent US military bases in the country.
8. Finally, makes sure that Iraqi oil belongs to the Iraqis. Once the oil is in the international market, the U.S. will certainly have access to our share. The bill ensures that the U.S. has no long-term control over Iraqi oil.
The key movers of the legislation are Lynn Woolsey and Barbara Lee (co-chairs of Progressive caucus, which has roughly 64 members) and Maxine Waters (chair of Out of Iraq Caucus, roughly 74 members). Much credit should also go to Progressive Democrats of America, which did much of the heavy lifting at the grassroots level to get this on the agenda.
Let's get out there and call Congress and tell our elected reps to sign on to this bill.