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  Letter to Gubernatorial candidates re: Guard Home 2022

UPDATE: September 16, 2022

Only one of nine candidates/parties replies by September 9.

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Peace and Justice Works
PO Box 42456
Portland, OR 97242
(503) 236-3065

August 19, 2022

Dear candidates for Oregon Governor:

We are writing to you to get your opinion on a life-and-death matter for many Oregonians: The deployment of our National Guard to countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya, Yemen and the region of the Western Pacific* without Congressional authorization.

Despite the US having promised to withdraw its forces from Iraq, 2500 military members remain in that country, over 19 years since the 2003 invasion. The US removed its troops from Afghanistan, but recently showed its intention to continue military operations with a drone strike targeting an individual accused of terrorism. The US also maintains a military presence in Syria without a United Nations, Congressional or indeed a Syrian mandate to do so.

Presidents have justified most of the military operations in the last 21 years by relying on the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) which was cobbled together after 9/11 to go after those responsible for the attacks on New York and Washington. It was never intended as an open-ended "war on terrorism" without borders.

Congress has been reluctant to vote on a new authorization bill, and efforts to repeal both the 2002 Authorization that led to the Iraq war and to modify the 2001 AUMF have stalled.

A number of groups from around the state of Oregon have been urging the Governors of this state to Keep Oregon's Guard in Oregon, from Gov. Kulongoski in 2008 to Gov. Kitzhaber in 2012 and Gov. Brown for the last seven years.

While several deployments of the Guard have happened in the interim, we urge you to pledge not to send any more Oregonians into unauthorized and ill fated war zones.

We hope you will let us know your opinion on this matter so we can share a fact sheet with our constituents. We are non-partisan groups interested in finding alternatives to war as a solution to the world's problems.

We look forward to your prompt reply by no later than 12 noon on Friday, September 9, 2022 in order to get the responses out prior to ballots going out.

Thank you

    Dan Handelman for
    Peace and Justice Works Iraq Affinity Group (Portland)

    Veterans For Peace Linus Pauling Chapter 132 of Corvallis-Albany

    Allen Hallmark on behalf of
    Veterans for Peace, Rogue Valley Chapter 156

    Dan Shea for
    Veterans for Peace Chapter 72, Portland

    Oak Grove Peace Vigil (Milwaukie, OR)

    Washington County Peace Vigil

Signers after August 19, 2022:

    Albany Peace Seekers

  cc: Tina Kotek, Democratic Party
          Christine Drazan, Republican Party
          Betsy Johnson, unaffiliated candidate
          R. Leon Noble, Libertarian Party
          Nathalie Paravicini, Pacific Green Party
          Independent Party,
          Working Families Party
          Constitution Party
          Progressive Party

*- pacific/374892/

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From: Ron Noble, Libertarian Party

Your organizations are not the only ones concerned. The Libertarian Party in general desires to end the toreign war machine.

You have asked for my answer; I will give it to you now:

*I do not support sending Oregonians to any war, of any type, in any place, for any reason. *

I intend to raise the bar on deployments to such an extreme height that Oregon is never approached to send the citizen soldiers of the Oregon National Guard and Oregon Air National Guard to fight and die for the military industrial complex, oil, and other garbage foreign policy excuses such as we have seen since the end of World War II.

The crew and assets of Mustang 22 would have been better used in Oregon fighting fires, evacuating victims, or performing searches. I saw first hand the destruction of Pendleton's morale when that flight was shot down.

These are the citizens of Oregon.
Their presence, and lack of presence, is noted every day. They, and all those around them, are forever changed by the damage.

We have need for our citizens to be here.
Their families deserve to have them at home.
They deserve to live their lives in a healthy manner at home.

I will not send our men and women of the Oregon National Guard and Oregon Air National Guard to fight.

Tina Kotek
(Democratic Party)

Candidate did not respond

Christine Drazan (Republican Party)

Candidate did not respond

Betsy Johnson (unaffiliated)

Candidate did not respond

Nathalie Paravincini (Pacific Green Party)

Candidate has ended their campaign.

Oregon Progressive Party

The Oregon Progressive Party has always opposed PDX involvement in JTTF.

Constitution Party

No response.

Working Families Party

No response.

Independent Party

No response.

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Peace and Justice Works
PO Box 42456
Portland, OR 97242
(503) 236-3065

Page posted August 20, 2022, updated September 15, 2022


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