This is the speech I delivered on 10/23/2003 while in Vienna at a Green Party talk on Iraq. I would say two lines and Gerti would translate into German for everyone.
My name is Jeff McKenzie, I am from the U.S.. My son, Jeremy is a Captain in the U.S. Army. Last November, myself, along with another military family formed MFSO, to oppose a war on Iraq and Bush administration's policies. Since that time we have grown to over 1,000 military families. Today we oppose the occupation and continued deployments. In January, my son was deployed to Kuwait/Iraq where he flew medevac missions up until June. Myself and other MFSO members were part of a lawsuit brought against the President of the U.S. to stop him from declaring war, a power under our Constitution given only to Congress. We have and continue to protest in the streets of Washington DC, NYC, Boston, LA and around the country. We have been very vocal in the media both in the U.S. and internationally. We have lobbied our government officials.
Recently MFSO, veterans, active duty personnel and reservists launched the BRING THEM HOME NOW campaign.
Those that are in uniform have joined for many reasons. For many it was the only way they would have the opportunity to go to college, which is expensive in the U.S.. For others, it meant a steady job with benefits like healthcare, which millions of Americans live without.
As you know, this was not a war about WMD (weapons of mass destruction) or terrorism. Instead it is a war of aggression, masked by a campaign of lies, deception and a policy of no negotations. Iraq's infrastructure has been further destroyed, thousands of innocent Iraqi's have died, thousands more wounded. Our loved ones in uniform have been misused and mistreated by our own government.
I have some information for you on the BRING THEM HOME NOW campaign and a sheet I made up with various internet links, I hope you will take them and check them out. While you may not be military families or live in the U.S. or Iraq, it is important for us to reach out and understand each other if our world is ever to achieve a lasting peace. Bush's war on terrorism I am afraid is not over and we must continue to build a worldwide peace movement to oppose it.
Jeff and Jeremy's Story
Bring Them Home Now
MFSO Protest, DC
One Of Many
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