Action Alerts

Schiff-Jones Drone Transparency Bill Call-In

A new documentary reveals that CIA drone strikes in Pakistan have been carried out by regular U.S. Air Force personnel. Former U.S. drone pilot Brandon Bryant says:

"... the lie is that it's always been the air force that has flown those missions. The CIA might be the customer but the air force has always flown it. A CIA label is just an excuse to not have to give up any information. That is all it has ever been."

Members of the House can do something very simple to address this. They can co-sponsor the Schiff-Jones bill, which would require the government to report on who is being killed by drone strikes.

Call the Congressional switchboard at 202-225-3121, ask to be connected to your Representative’s office, and say:

I’m calling to ask Rep. ____ to co-sponsor H.R.4372, the Targeted Lethal Force Transparency Act. This bipartisan bill would require the government to report on who is being killed by U.S. drone strikes, including how many civilians. The American people have the right to know what is being done in our name. You can co-sponsor the bill by contacting Rep. Adam Schiff’s office or Rep. Walter Jones’ office.

Call Your Rep TODAY To Stop US From Blocking Medicines For Iranians

A few weeks ago, we sent out an action alert about a letter being circulated by Rep. Jim Moran in the House calling on the White House to take necessary steps to ensure that medicine imports are not impeded by US sanctions. Despite trade in medicines being protect by both US and international law, and the granting of exemptions and licenses for medicines and other humanitarian goods, US sanctions are still contributing to a medicine shortage in Iran.

The letter closes at the end of the day Wednesday, so call your Rep today!

Call your Rep at 1-855-686-6927 and say

I urge you to sign Rep. Jim Moran's letter urging the White House to take necessary action to ensure U.S. sanctions do not block medicine, food, and licensed humanitarian goods from reaching the Iranian people.

Here are some additional talking points:

- Tens of thousands of Iranian civilians with treatable illnesses have suffered unnecessarily and unjustly because of medicine shortages created in part by US sanctions even though trade is medicines is supposed to be protected by both US and international law.
- Congress has exempted medicine, food, and humanitarian goods from sanctions, and the Administration has issued licenses for these goods. However, there are few non-sanctioned financial channels available and many banks have been unwilling to facilitate humanitarian transactions due to sanctions.

Report your call using the form below.

Boycott & Sanction John "Vladimir" Brennan for Violations of International Law

The Obama Administration has established a new precedent by implementing sanctions against Russian officials for violations of international law in the wake of Russia’s occupation and annexation of Crimea. So we thought: let's get civil society organizations in the United States and around the world to invoke this precedent in calling U.S. officials to account for the U.S.'s own violations of international law!

John Brennan, head of the Central Intelligence Agency, is playing a central role in shielding the agency from accountability to international law on three key issues: the CIA's use of torture during the Bush Administration; the CIA’s use of drone strikes; and the CIA’s arming of Syria rebels, which the Obama Administration has acknowledged is a violation of Syria’s sovereignty under international law, [1] just as Russia’s actions in Crimea violate Ukraine’s sovereignty under international law.

Join us in calling for boycott and sanctions on John Brennan until the CIA takes concrete steps to comply with international law by signing our petition at MoveOn:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/boycott-brennan

Here is the petition text:

John Brennan, head of the Central Intelligence Agency, should be subject to boycott and sanctions for the CIA's failure to comply with U.S. and international law. John Brennan should not receive any award, honor, or recognition until the CIA takes concrete, minimal steps to transparently comply with U.S. and international law, including:

- supporting declassification of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on the CIA's use of torture and the CIA's internal “Panetta review” on the CIA's use of torture;

Don't Let AIPAC Dictate Iran Terms—Call your Senators Today!

Sen. Menendez has lent his pen to AIPAC yet again by drafting a new letter that reintroduces the old zero enrichment demand by calling on President Obama to insist that Iran has no right to enrichment and that any final deal must dismantle Iran's inaccurately-referred-to “nuclear weapons program.” And if that's not bad enough: Sen. Lindsey Graham co-wrote the letter.

During their annual conference, thousands of AIPAC activists were on the Hill telling your Senators to sign the Menendez-Graham letter. Now they need to hear from you.

Call your Senators at 1-855-686-6927 and say

I urge Sen. ____ not to sign the Menendez-Graham letter that could scuttle President Obama's Iran diplomacy by imposing unreasonable terms on a final deal.

After you make your call, tell us how it went below.

With AIPAC Reeling, Let's Push the House to Support Diplomacy

Who knew we’d live to see this glorious day? The New York Times is reporting that the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)’s efforts to pass a bill in the Senate to cripple diplomacy with Iran have stalled, and concludes that AIPAC has lost influence in Washington. [1] Hallelujah!

Now we have a great opportunity to take the fight to the House, where more than 70 Representatives are circulating a letter supporting U.S.-Iran diplomacy and opposing new sanctions and other measures that would kill the talks. [2]

Getting Members of Congress to stay off a nefarious bill is important, but it’s even more significant when we can get them to publicly endorse realistic diplomacy to end the U.S.-Iran conflict.

Urge your Representative to sign the diplomacy letter now.

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/give-diplomacy-a-chance-letter

Thanks for all you do to help bring about a just foreign policy,

Robert Naiman, Chelsea Mozen, and Megan Iorio
Just Foreign Policy

Help support our work — make a $10 tax-deductible donation today!
Your financial support helps us create opportunities for Americans to agitate for a more just foreign policy.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/donate

References:

1. “Potent Pro-Israel Group Finds Its Momentum Blunted,” Mark Landler, New York Times, Feb. 3, 2014, http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/04/world/middleeast/potent-pro-israel-gro...
2. "Another big blow to the Iran sanctions bill,” Greg Sargent, Washington Post, February 3, http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2014/02/03/another-big-...

Thank Oxfam for cutting ties with Scarlett Johansson over SodaStream

Oxfam has cut ties with celebrity Scarlett Johansson over her refusal to give up her role as a "brand ambassador" for the Israeli company SodaStream, which operates a factory in an illegal Israeli settlement in the West Bank. As Oxfam stated: [1]

Johansson's role promoting the company SodaStream is incompatible with her role as an Oxfam global ambassador. Oxfam believes that businesses, such as SodaStream, that operate in settlements further the ongoing poverty and denial of rights of the Palestinian communities that we work to support. Oxfam is opposed to all trade from Israeli settlements, which are illegal under international law.

The campaign against Johansson's partnership with SodaStream has helped raise the profile of the company's association with the occupation. But we have yet another opportunity coming up: SodaStream is airing an ad featuring Johansson during the Super Bowl. People will be talking about the ad on Twitter. So let's show them what SodaStream's really about by publicly thanking Oxfam for parting ways with Johansson during the Super Bowl!

Here are two ways you can participate:

  1. Sign our petition thanking Oxfam: http://justforeignpolicy.org/act/oxfam-sodastream
  2. Join our Thunderclap, which will automatically send a message through your Twitter account during the Super Bowl. You can also sign up using your Facebook account: https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/8554-thank-oxfam-for-scarjo-split

Thanks for all you do to promote a just peace in Israel-Palestine,

Megan Iorio, Chelsea Mozen, and Robert Naiman
Just Foreign Policy

Help support our work — make a $10 tax-deductible donation today!
Your financial support helps us create opportunities for Americans to agitate for a more just foreign policy.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/donate

References:

John Kerry: Talk to Iran About Syria

Over the holiday weekend, two major developments occurred on the Iran diplomacy front: the interim nuclear deal with UN Security Council members and Germany took effect, and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon invited Iran to the second Syria peace conference, called Geneva II, which starts January 22. [1] [2]

If you've seen the news the last two days, you probably already know that Secretary of State John Kerry pressured Secretary General Ban to withdraw Iran's invitation to Geneva II purportedly because Iran never agreed to the terms of the Geneva communiqué, the outcome of the previous peace conference that Iran was also not invited to. [3]

But just last week, Kerry admitted that Iran was a “major actor” in the Syria conflict and that “no other nation has its people on the ground fighting in the way that they are.” [4] Given this, how can the US expect to secure a ceasefire without Iranian cooperation?

With real progress being made in the nuclear talks, now is the time to also talk to Iran about Syria.

Tell John Kerry to stop blocking Iran's involvement in the Syria talks and to work with Iran to secure a ceasefire to stop the killing.

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/kerry-syria-talks

Thanks for all you do to help bring about a just foreign policy,

Megan Iorio, Chelsea Mozen, and Robert Naiman
Just Foreign Policy

Help support our work — make a $10 tax-deductible donation today!
Your financial support helps us create opportunities for Americans to agitate for a more just foreign policy.
http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/donate

References:

1. “Iran begins enrichment cap as nuclear deal with world powers takes effect,” Barbara Slavin, Al Jazeera, January 19, 2014, http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2014/1/19/iran-world-powersstartin...

TODAY: Call Your Senators Opposing New Iran Sanctions

Just days before the holiday recess, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman, Sen. Robert Menendez, introduced S. 1881, the so-called "Nuclear Weapons Free Iran Act of 2013", which calls for further sanctions on Iran and imposes conditions on a final deal. If this bill goes to a vote and passes, it promises to destroy all the diplomatic progress President Obama has made with Iran so far. Leaders in Iran's Majlis are already warning that they will respond in kind to the passage of this legislation-and that Iran may opt out of talks altogether.

You can help prevent AIPAC and its friends in the Senate from sabotaging the Iran talks by making a two minute call today.

Here's what you do:

  1. Check whether your Senator is a current co-sponsor
  2. Call your Senators' offices in DC directly or use this toll-free number for the Capitol Switchboard, courtesy of the Friends Committee on National Legislation: 1-855-686-6927
  3. When the person in your Senator's office picks up, say, "I urge Senator ____ to oppose S. 1881, the Nuclear Weapons Free Iran Act of 2013, which would destroy the possibility of a diplomatic agreement with Iran by imposing new sanctions at this critical moment."
  4. When you're done, report your call below.

Our Greatest Achievement

Over the last few weeks, we've been recalling our highest achievements of 2013. But our greatest success this year? You.

Yes, you are our greatest success. In 2013, Just Foreign Policy has increased its membership by a factor of three. This is not just a figure to boast about. It translates to real impact.

Last year, when we put out a call to action, we would usually get around 3,000 people to respond. This year, our petitions have attracted 15,000 to over 30,000 signatures. That's a huge difference.

When we act collectively, we are able to speak with a resounding voice. That translates to real wins. It's not a coincidence that 2013 has been our most successful year. It's all because of you.

But maintaining a membership this size requires more funding than we've needed in previous years. That's why we've set a goal of raising $25,000 by the end of December. And you know what? We're pretty confident that we can make it. But only if you help us get there.

So if you value what we do, help fund it. Will you make a $10 (or more!) tax-deductible donation to Just Foreign Policy?

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/donate

If you would like to send a check instead, here's our address:

Just Foreign Policy
4410 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, #290
Washington, DC 20016

Thank you for all you do to promote a more just US foreign policy,

Megan Iorio, Chelsea Mozen and Robert Naiman
Just Foreign Policy

The Year AIPAC Lost—A Lot

For the last few weeks, we've been presenting some of the success stories of 2013. Today, we want to do something a bit different. Let's talk about some of this year's losses—AIPAC's losses, that is.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee—known popularly by its acronym, AIPAC—has acquired a reputation as an organization that pretty much always gets what it wants. When it somehow doesn't—like in 2008 when our coalition got its Iran blockade bill shelved—it's a really big deal. So one of the most surprising—and exciting—things about 2013 was the sheer amount of times AIPAC failed to achieve its goal.

Let's go back to the beginning of the year. President Obama wanted Chuck Hagel for Defense Secretary. AIPAC didn't, and launched a major campaign against him. JFP, along with our coalition partners, pushed back. We won; AIPAC lost.

AIPAC sent 300 lobbyists to the Hill to push for US military strikes on Syria. We succeeded in delaying a decision long enough for a diplomatic deal to be reached. We won; AIPAC lost.

AIPAC did not want a rapprochement between the US and Iran in the wake of Hassan Rouhani's election. We encouraged diplomacy. 131 Members of Congress backed a reinvigorated effort to engage Iran. The Obama administration ended 30 years of silence by engaging in high-level talks that brought about an interim deal. We won; AIPAC lost.

AIPAC and its friends in Congress have been trying to nuke the Iran deal by pressuring Congress to pass new sanctions and other incendiary legislation. But Congress just ended its last session of the year—and no legislation passed. On top of that, we got Sen. Elizabeth Warren to back the interim deal during a Senate Banking Committee hearing. We won (twice!); AIPAC lost.