U.S. Conference of Mayors to Consider Iran Resolution


It’s a Slippery Slope to War: Ask Your Representative to Oppose H. Con. Res. 362Over the last three weeks 77 House Democrats and 92 Republicans have agreed to cosponsor a new resolution against Iran that demands that President Bush “initiate an international effort” to impose a land, sea, and air blockade on Iran to prevent it from importing gasoline and to subject all cargo entering or leaving Iran to stringent inspection requirements.

Such a blockade imposed without United Nations authority (which the resolution does not call for) would be widely construed as an act of war.  Some congressional sources say the House could vote on the resolution, H.Con.Res. 362, as early as next week.

Please send a letter asking your Representative to oppose this dangerous path that could lead directly to war with Iran.

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Washington DC — A resolution urging the Bush Administration “to pursue diplomatic engagement with Iran on nuclear issues and ending the violence in Iraq” will be considered by the US Conference of Mayors this week.  The annual meeting, to be held in Miami, FL from June 20-24, brings together mayors from over one thousand American cities and will feature keynote addresses by presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton.

The resolution, put forward by Mayor Bob Kiss of Burlington, VT, follows similar measures passed by City Councils in Palo Alto, CA, Charlottesville, VA, Chicago, IL, and others who voted to oppose war with Iran.  It already has a total of twenty co-sponsors and is becoming a national phenomenon that transcends localities.

The resolution states that: “Iran has not threatened to attack the United States, and no compelling evidence has been presented to document that Iran poses a real and imminent threat to the security and safety of the United States that would justify an unprovoked unilateral pre-emptive military attack.”

It emphasizes that using peaceful means when dealing with Iran does not show support for its government.  Instead, the resolution sets out that military action would neither be in the USA’s nor the Iranian people’s best interest; attacking Iran would violate international law, destabilize the Middle East and “could well prove counterproductive to the cause of promoting freedom and democracy.”

Drawing parallels to the current war in Iraq, which the resolution notes “has cost U.S. taxpayers more than $500 billion, depriving our cities of much-needed funds for services and infrastructure,” the nation’s mayors urge the Bush administration to avoid war with Iran.  The co-sponsors agree military action against Iran would alienate America from the international community and worsen its unpopularity amongst the rest of the world.

The consideration of this resolution by the Conference of Mayors appeared to be a reaction to President Bush’s approach to Iran, which involves pushing for increased sanctions while requiring Iran suspend its uranium enrichment before negotiations may begin.  Although Bush said he wants to “solve this problem [with Iran] diplomatically,” he added in a visit to the UK that, “Iranians must understand, however, that all options are on the table.”

This past week, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced that Britain and the other members of the European Union have agreed to freeze the assets of the Bank of Melli, Iran’s largest bank, and would consider separate sanctions targeting Iran’s oil and natural gas industries.  This comes at the same time the US Congress is considering a resolution effectively calling for a blockade of Iran’s ports.

In order to make your voice heard on this vote, contact your mayor and urge him/her to support this call for diplomacy.

This article first appeared in the Web site of the National Iranian American Council on 19 June 2008.

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