November 2015

Tell Congress: We can’t fight terrorism with xenophobia

Some have used the attacks in Paris Friday to whip up a xenophobic hysteria against Syrian refugees. Members of Congress say their phones are ringing with demands to keep Syrian refugees out, but not with voices insisting that America is a place of refuge from persecution. We need to speak up. Welcoming refugees is our moral obligation. It’s also our obligation under international law.

Help us turn the tide. Call your Representative at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer, you can say something like:

“We can’t fight terrorism with xenophobia. I urge you to reject efforts to block Syrian refugees from resettling in the United States.”

When you’ve made your call, please report it below.

Tell your Senator: Co-Sponsor Sen. Udall's bill, Oppose Sending Troops to Syria

New Mexico Democratic Senator Tom Udall, backed by Connecticut Democratic Senator Chris Murphy and Republican Utah Senator Mike Lee, has now introduced legislation that would block sending US ground troops to Syria. As Senator Udall has stated, escalating US involvement in a complex ethnic and religious civil war by deploying ground troops is a mistake which is on dubious legal ground under both US and international law; Congress has not authorized the use of military force in Syria.

Urge your Senator to co-sponsor Sen. Udall’s legislation by calling him now at (202) 224-3121. When you reach a staffer, you can say something like:

“I support Sen. _____'s stand against sending US ground troops to Syria. I urge him to co-sponsor the Udall-Lee bill which would prohibit sending US ground troops to Syria.”

When you’ve made your call, please report it below.

Tell President Obama to Require Disclosure of Federal Contractors' Political Donations

The Citizens United decision unleashed a new level of influence over war & peace for corporations. But there's something President Obama can do, with the stroke of a pen, to reduce that influence.

Corporations awarded federal contracts – including Pentagon contractors – should be required to disclose their political donations to candidates and SuperPACs. We deserve to know which political campaigns are funded by companies to whom our tax-dollars are awarded.

It is imperative that corporations that profit from our wars of choice are no longer able to hide their donations in SuperPACs that support intervention and oppose deals like the Iran Nuclear Agreement. That's why President Obama should sign an executive order mandating disclosure today.

Call the White House NOW at 1-888-894-6720 and say,

"I urge President Obama to issue an executive order without delay requiring companies that receive taxpayer money from federal contracts to disclose their political spending."

When you're done, please report your call below.

Today, over 750,000 signatures will be delivered to the White House in support of an executive order instituting transparency for federal contractors' political donations. Over 13,000 are Just Foreign Policy subscribers.

If you haven't signed our petition, you can do that here:

Ellison-Yarmuth-Dingell Letter Urging an End to Violence in Israel and Palestine

November XX, 2015

His Excellency Mahmoud Abbas


Palestinian National Authority

His Excellency Benyamin Netanyahu

Prime Minister of Israel

Dear President Abbas and Prime Minister Netanyahu:

We write in anguish and grief at the latest outbreak of deadly violence in Jerusalem and the West Bank. We appreciate your willingness to engage with Secretary Kerry and King Abdullah and hope you will build on that dialogue by doing everything in your power to avoid language and actions that increase fear, hatred, and violence. This moment calls on all of us to take actions that promote peace.

This violence is a familiar symptom of the underlying problem: the lack of a political solution that creates two states for two peoples, living side-by-side in peace and security. We know from experience in the region that when leaders make a commitment to the peace process, violence decreases.

Securing a lasting peace requires a commitment to humanizing the Israeli and Palestinian experience. Divisive rhetoric dehumanizes people and undermines the prospect of a two-state solution and long term peace.

We are committed to making this same plea to our colleagues in Congress. Members of the United States House of Representatives – and the American people -- have wanted peace and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians for decades. In order to be an effective voice for peace, we should pursue an approach the urges both sides to live up to their obligations under the Oslo Accords.

Call-in: Tell your Rep. to co-sponsor H.R.508 in support of diplomacy to end Syrian War

"We die in the war or we die at sea - people are dying either way."

That's one Syrian refugee's bleak analysis of the crisis that has forced over 4 million people to flee from their homes, families, and livelihoods. The ultimate answer to the Syrian refugee crisis is to end the war through diplomacy among the powers backing various sides in the war, so more people won't be driven from their homes and so that those already displaced can go home.

The first round of diplomatic talks at Vienna concluded with a firm commitment from all parties to end the war. Another round begins next week. But there's no guarantee these talks will succeed because real diplomacy requires compromise. And the Obama administration will be less likely to compromise if it does not have the public support of Congress and the American public.

Rep. Jim Himes, who led 54 other members of Congress in sending a letter in support of using diplomacy to end the war, has now introduced a resolution “Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the President of the United States should use the full authority of his office to convene international negotiations intended to stop the civil war in Syria.”

Tell your Representative to co-sponsor Rep. Himes' resolution in support of diplomacy to end the Syrian war. Call your Representative NOW at (202) 224-3121 and say,

“The solution to the Syrian refugee crisis is realistic diplomacy to end the Syrian war. I urge you to co-sponsor H.R. 508 calling on President Obama to use his full authority to end the Syrian war through international diplomatic negotiations.”

When you're done, please report your call below.

And if you haven't signed our petition urging members of Congress to co-sponsor H.R. 508, you can do that here: