News Release

Thousands Die While Washington Plays “Blame Game”


Madden was a communications and electronics specialist with the Marines in Iraq. He co-founded the Appeal for Redress, a way in which individual service members can appeal to their Congressional Representative and U.S. Senators to urge an end to the U.S. military occupation. He left the military in January. He said today: “The notion that we have to keep funding the war to ‘support the troops’ is insulting the intelligence of the troops. Obviously if you keep funding a war based on lies — treating the troops like pawns — the troops will be stuck in Iraq. Without the funding, the troops would not be there; Bush would have to withdraw.

“Congress is attempting to defuse the sentiment of a lot of people who want this war to end by giving the impression that Congress tried to end it when in fact that’s not what the bill would have done. The entire argument between Bush and Congress has been a farce.”
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Executive director of Iraq Veterans Against the War, Dougherty was in Iraq from March 2003 to February 2004 with the Colorado National Guard. Her most recent piece is titled “Thousands Die While Washington Plays ‘Blame Game.'” Dougherty writes: “Instead of using their ‘power of the purse’ to end the war in Iraq, the Democratic leadership is simply trying to shift the blame for the war back to the president. They tell us that they are doing all they can to end the war and that we must be patient.”

Dougherty also writes that the vetoed legislation “would have set the deadline for withdrawal from Iraq by August 2008, more than a year away. Between now and August, we can expect to lose at least 1,000 of our service men and women and tens of thousands of Iraqis. What’s more, the bill only guarantees that half of the approximately 150,000 troops currently in Iraq come home. Congress inserted language into the bill that makes it so that whole categories of troops are exempt from the withdrawal, including those who are ‘training the Iraqi military,’ engaged in ‘special operations,’ or ‘protecting diplomatic enclaves.’ This means that President Bush could have kept anywhere from 60,000 to 80,000 troops permanently in Iraq….”
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Tina Richards’ son has been deployed to Iraq twice. He has since attempted suicide and is facing a third deployment. She has been meeting with members of Congress and is urging others to do so, calling for a “Swarm on Congress” as a recent piece she wrote is entitled.
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Lessin is co-founder of Military Families Speak Out. She said today: “Fund our troops, and de-fund this war. Fully fund the safe and orderly withdrawal of our troops from Iraq, and the care they need when they get home. Do not bargain or compromise with the lives of our loved ones or the loved ones of others. Do not abandon our troops to an unjust and unjustifiable war. Strengthen your resolve, use your ‘power of the purse’ and end this war.” Lessin is in contact with numerous families of U.S. troops who are in Iraq.
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For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167