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DEMS STUDY AND LAMENT AS NATION CRUMBLES

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The Washington Post is reporting today that, "The economic costs to the U.S. of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan so far total approximately $1.5 trillion, according to a new study by congressional Democrats that estimates the conflicts' 'hidden costs'-- including higher oil prices, the expense of treating wounded veterans and interest payments on the money borrowed to pay for the wars."

"That amount is nearly double the $804 billion the White House has spent or requested to wage these wars through 2008, according to the Democratic staff of Congress's Joint Economic Committee. Its report, titled The Hidden Costs of the Iraq War, estimates that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have thus far cost the average U.S. family of four more than $20,000."

"The report argues that war funding is diverting billions of dollars away from 'productive investment' by American businesses in the United States. It also says that the conflicts are pulling reservists and National Guardsmen away from their jobs, resulting in economic disruptions for U.S. employers that the report estimates at $1 billion to $2 billion."

Sadly, the very same Democratic party that commissioned the study will soon hand Bush-Cheney even more money for the Iraq-Afghanistan occupations and the ballooning Pentagon budget. Here-in lies even more evidence of the very cynical strategy of the "party now in power" as they disclose to the American people their intention of doing nothing to stop the chaos that they so strongly lament.

These weak-kneed Democrats stand back rubbing their chins and wringing their hands in grave concern but do nothing to hold the Bush pirate team accountable for their crimes against international law and humanity as a whole. They are doing their level best to kill the national campaign for impeachment.

Thankfully the peace movement is not sitting back waiting for Godot. People are protesting locally in record numbers, getting arrested as we saw in Boston yesterday when 18 Veterans for Peace were locked up for standing with gags over their mouths in protest of once again not being allowed to participate in the Veterans Day parade in that community.


In Olympia, Washington demonstrations continued against shipments of military cargo through the Port of Olympia. Activists were pepper sprayed by police as they tried to block military trucks hauling equipment to Fort Lewis after it was unloaded from a ship carrying the gear back from Iraq. More than a dozen have been arrested in recent days.

Even in conservative St. Augustine, Florida folks held a Veterans Day die-in to protest the war. Our 96 year old friend Peg McIntire, with a sign on her walker that said "Granny for Peace", was right in the middle of the action.

People are stretching themselves to go beyond their normal protest boundaries which is just what we need as our nation descends deeper into fascism and endless war.

 

Bruce Gagnon is the Coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space.

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