August 2011

JFP 8/17: Brazil Mooting Withdrawal of Troops from Haiti

Just Foreign Policy News
August 17, 2011

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Why the Jobs Argument Against Military Cuts is Bogus

An argument against cuts to projected military spending that is sure to rear its ugly head is that this would cost American jobs. In the current political context, this "jobs" argument is 100% nonsense. Here's why.
http://www.truth-out.org/why-jobs-argument-against-military-cuts-bogus/1313598273

*Take Action: Urge Your Rep. to Support the Lee Bill

Representative Barbara Lee has introduced legislation that would prevent the Pentagon from keeping thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq by cutting off funds for the war after December 31, 2011. Urge your Representative to co-sponsor the Lee bill.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/obamaextendsbushwar

Obama: All Our Troops Will Leave Iraq This Year

As recently as the first week of August, Obama told supporters: "If somebody asks about the war ... if it's Iraq, you have a pretty simple answer, which is all our folks are going to be out of there by the end of the year."
http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/175433-obama-tells-supporters-to-avoid-getting-bogged-down-on-issue-specifics

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JFP 8/16: Why the "Jobs" Argument Against Military Cuts is Bogus

Just Foreign Policy News
August 16, 2011

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I) Actions and Featured Articles

Why the Jobs Argument Against Military Cuts is Bogus

An argument against cuts to projected military spending that is sure to rear its ugly head is that this would cost American jobs. In the current political context, this "jobs" argument is 100% nonsense. Here's why.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/why-the-jobs-argument-aga_b_928475.html

To Live Within Our Means, Let's Leave Iraq Like We Promised

While Washington wallows in debt hysteria, the Pentagon tries to keep 10,000 U.S. soldiers in Iraq indefinitely. Some Members of Congress have a different idea: let's leave Iraq in December, when we promised to do so.
http://www.truth-out.org/live-within-our-means-lets-leave-iraq-we-promised/1313417013

*Take Action: Urge Your Rep. to Support the Lee Bill
Representative Barbara Lee has introduced legislation that would prevent the Pentagon from keeping thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq by cutting off funds for the war after December 31, 2011. Urge your Representative to co-sponsor the Lee bill.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/obamaextendsbushwar

Chris Hellman: What Almost $8 Trillion in National Security Spending Bought You

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Why the Jobs Argument Against Military Cuts is Bogus

For the first time in a decade, significant cuts in projected military spending are on the table. If the "Super Congress" doesn't reach a deal on $1.2 trillion in debt reduction over the next ten years by Thanksgiving, $1.2 trillion in automatic cuts will be triggered, half of which must come from the military; and if the Super Congress does reach a deal, the prospects are good that cuts in projected military spending will be a significant part of the story (you can add your voice for cuts in projected military spending here.)

Obviously, however, the prospect of significant military cuts has well-heeled opponents. The military-industrial-Congressional-lobbyist-think tank-corporate media complex is not just going to roll over and play dead. In the next three months, we can expect a steady stream of pro-military spending propaganda. Expect to hear a lot about China, Iran, North Korea, and "global terrorism" as the beneficiaries of the military-industrial complex try to justify why we must continue to spend much more on the military than we did while opposing the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

But another argument against cuts to projected military spending is sure to rear its ugly head: we shouldn't cut military spending, because that would cost American jobs.

In the current political context, this "jobs" argument is 100% nonsense. Here's why.

The (first-order) Keynesian economics story for government spending to boost employment has three basic elements:

1. The economy is not always at full employment. Sometimes, there are a significant number of people who are "involuntarily unemployed" - they would like to work for the prevailing wage but cannot find a job.

JFP 8/15: Obama to the right of Coburn on military cuts?

Just Foreign Policy News
August 15, 2011

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I) Actions and Featured Articles

To Live Within Our Means, Let's Leave Iraq Like We Promised

While Washington wallows in debt hysteria, the Pentagon tries to keep 10,000 U.S. soldiers in Iraq indefinitely. Some Members of Congress have a different idea: let's leave Iraq in December, when we promised to do so.
http://www.truth-out.org/live-within-our-means-lets-leave-iraq-we-promised/1313417013

*Take Action: Urge Your Rep. to Support the Lee Bill
Representative Barbara Lee has introduced legislation that would prevent the Pentagon from keeping thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq by cutting off funds for the war after December 31, 2011. Urge your Representative to co-sponsor the Lee bill.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/obamaextendsbushwar

Seyed Hossein Mousavian: Iran is Ready to Negotiate
Former Iranian nuclear negotiator Seyed Hossein Mousavian says France, not the U.S., is now the main obstacle to meaningful negotiations over Iran's nuclear program, because while under Obama the U.S. position has shifted to accepting Iran's right to enrich uranium under conditions, France is now pushing the U.S. to discuss Iran's right to enrich at the end of negotiations, rather than at the beginning.
http://iranprimer.usip.org/blog/2011/aug/15/hossein-mousavian-iran-ready-negotiate-if

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JFP 8/12: To Live Within Our Means, Quit Iraq As Promised

Just Foreign Policy News
August 12, 2011

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To Live Within Our Means, Let's Leave Iraq Like We Promised

While Washington wallows in debt hysteria, the Pentagon tries to keep 10,000 U.S. soldiers in Iraq indefinitely. Some Members of Congress have a different idea: let's leave Iraq in December, when we promised to do so.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/to-live-within-our-means-_b_925563.html

*Take Action: Urge Your Rep. to Support the Lee Bill
Representative Barbara Lee has introduced legislation that would prevent the Pentagon from keeping thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq by cutting off funds for the war after December 31, 2011. Urge your Representative to co-sponsor the Lee bill.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/obamaextendsbushwar

Robert Greenwald: War Budget Cuts Possible If We Counter Contractors' Multimillion-Dollar Campaign Spending
Brave New Foundation is launching a campaign to expose war contractor lobbyists working to stop the Pentagon from being cut as part of debt reduction.
http://warcosts.com/

3rd GOP Presidential Republican Debate - Ron Paul on Iran vs. Santorum
Ron Paul denounces the 1953 coup that overthrew Mossadeq and installed the Shah - and the Republican crowd goes wild.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bAXBevBcwHU

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To Live Within Our Means, Let's Leave Iraq Like We Promised

The Senate and the Roman People have declared that the U.S. government is spending too much money. We have to live within our means. Difficult choices lie ahead. We can't do everything anyone might like us to do. Everything is on the table.


Therefore, instead of keeping U.S. troops in Iraq past December, we should pull them out like we promised. If not now, when? John McCain once said there's no problem with keeping U.S. troops in Iraq forever, just like we do in Germany, Japan, and South Korea. How liberals mocked him! But that's what the Obama Administration is now trying to do: keep US troops in Iraq forever.

Some Members of Congress have a different idea: let's leave Iraq like we promised in the signed agreement between the two governments.

Representative Barbara Lee has introduced legislation that would prevent the Pentagon from keeping thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq by cutting off funds for the war after December 31, 2011. In other words, the bill would cut off funds for violating the agreement with Iraq to pull out troops by December. It would cut off funds for violating Obama's campaign promise to end the war.

The Pentagon doesn't want you to notice that at the same time Washington is seized with debt hysteria, and the nation's mainstream media are demanding cuts to Social Security and Medicare benefits on the preposterous claim that "we can no longer afford it," the Pentagon is laying plans to keep 10,000 U.S. troops in Iraq forever. They call these troops "trainers," so we are not supposed to notice. But these "trainers" engage in combat: they kill Iraqis, and they get killed by Iraqis.

JFP 8/11: Tea Party: Bring on the Military Cuts

Just Foreign Policy News
August 11, 2011

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A Historic Opportunity to Cut Military Spending

The agreement in Washington to raise the debt ceiling in exchange for deficit reduction has made a lot of people very unhappy. But the agreement had one important positive aspect: it created a historic opportunity for significant cuts in projected military spending.
http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/08/20118711133701977.html

* Take Action:
Urge Congress and the President to Put Military Cuts First in Line
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/cutpentagonfirst

Financial Times: Iran exile group should stay on terror list, say experts
A group of US-based Iran experts - including academics, former political prisoners and former officials - wrote to Secretary of State Clinton, urging her not to remove the MEK from the US list of foreign terrorist organizations. "Removing the MEK from the foreign terrorist organization list and misconstruing its lack of democratic bona fides and support inside Iran will have harmful consequences on the legitimate, indigenous Iranian opposition," the 37 experts said. The signatories include John Limbert, head of Iranian affairs in the State Department until recently and one of the diplomats held hostage in 1979 in the US embassy in Tehran; Paul Pillar, a former US intelligence agent now at Georgetown University; and Trita Parsi, head of the National Iranian American Council.

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JFP 8/10: Panama trade deal could aid tax dodging; Arab Spring shows Palestine support

Just Foreign Policy News
August 10, 2011

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I) Actions and Featured Articles

A Historic Opportunity to Cut Military Spending

The agreement in Washington to raise the debt ceiling in exchange for deficit reduction has made a lot of people very unhappy. But the agreement had one important positive aspect: it created a historic opportunity for significant cuts in projected military spending.
http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/08/20118711133701977.html

Take Action:
Urge Congress and the President to Put Military Cuts First in Line
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/cutpentagonfirst

Bahrain: Shouting in the dark
Al Jazeera's documentary on the democracy movement in Bahrain, the Saudi-led crackdown, and the anemic Western response.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xaTKDMYOBOU

Call to Action: nationwide protests on September 15, 2011 in support of Palestine
A Palestinian state is on the UN's table. But the US is acting to block Palestinian self-determination.
http://september15.org/

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JFP 8/9: Barney Frank Schools NPR on Cutting the Military Budget

Just Foreign Policy News
August 9, 2011

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I) Actions and Featured Articles

A Historic Opportunity to Cut Military Spending

The agreement in Washington to raise the debt ceiling in exchange for deficit reduction has made a lot of people very unhappy. But the agreement had one important positive aspect: it created a historic opportunity for significant cuts in projected military spending.
http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/08/20118711133701977.html

Take Action:
Urge Congress and the President to Put Military Cuts First in Line
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/cutpentagonfirst

Van Jones: Progressive Groups Unveil 'Contract For The American Dream'

Bullet #8 is "end the wars and invest at home."
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/08/progressive-groups-unveil_n_921520.html

Call to Action: nationwide protests on September 15, 2011 in support of Palestine
A Palestinian state is on the UN's table. But the US is acting to block Palestinian self-determination.
http://september15.org/

Think Progress: US military budget = 6 times China, Iran, and North Korea combined
Think Progress mocks Secretary Panetta's contention that we cannot cut the military budget because of the threat from China, Iran, and North Korea.

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Barney Frank Schools NPR on S&P, Social Security, and Cuts to Military Spending

Barney Frank smacks down National Pentagon Radio:

- S&P has a long track record of error, over-rating private debt and
undervaluing public debt

- if you make more than $250,000 a year in taxable income, for the
government to get another $30 from every additional thousand will have
no negative impact on you are the economy and will help us reduce the
deficit without savage cuts to the environment and highways

- we can no longer be the world's military budget or policeman

- withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan at a cost of $125 billion a year

- the President is unfortunately talking about keeping US troops in
Iraq, at a cost of billions of dollars a year, which would keep US
troops there longer than George Bush

- there is no firm withdrawal date in Afghanistan, they're talking
about staying there several more years

- time to tell NATO they no longer need American protection,
everything has changed in the world except the tens of billions of
American money that go there

- many Republicans now are starting to move in this direction.
Obviously I and the Tea Party disagree on a number of issues, but a
significant number of them are willing to break with the establishment
view that it is somehow America's responsibility to guard the whole
world. There is no justification for America protecting Western Europe
against nonexistent threats. There is no justification for us building
anti-missile defense systems in Poland the Czech Republic to protect
them against nonexistent threats from Iran

- the Defense budget is bigger than Medicare

- Social Security is self-financing

- I am not going to tell an 80 year woman living on $19,000 a year
that she gets no cost of living, or that a man who has been doing
physical labor all his life, and is now at a 67 year old retirement,
which is where Social Security will be soon, that he has to work for
five more years.