Over the last three weeks, we at Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) have watched with dread the endless bombing of Gaza, leading to the senseless killing of now more than 1,300 Palestinians and the destruction of their homes, lives and livelihoods.
In the past we have announced our support of the right to self-determination for Palestinians, alongside our firm conviction of the illegality and dehumanizing nature of the blockade of Gaza and the occupation of the West Bank. This moment is no different.
The US government has continually provided arms and money to Israel to the tune of $3.1 billion per year. It is our own country’s weaponry that is causing the deaths of entire families in Gaza. We see it as our duty to resist the steady grinding militarization of our foreign and domestic policies and we stand in solidarity with those resisting the same efforts overseas, both the Palestinian people and the Israeli reservists who have refused to serve in this conflict.
The US invasion of Iraq in 2003 incited a previously unimaginable deepening of sectarian divisions among the people of Iraq following the overthrow of the repressive Ba’athist regime of Saddam Hussein. The US government and its occupation forces set in place the most serious sectarian and ethnic tensions in Iraq’s modern history and have yet to address the humanitarian catastrophe set in motion by the war. On the 10-year commemoration of the US invasion in March 2013, the Right to Heal initiative brought together Iraqi social justice organizers and unionists with US military veterans opposed to the war and our group of politically-aligned organizations to call for reparations for the people of Iraq for the disastrous legacy US forces left behind.
Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) – an organization comprised of individuals who served or continue to serve in the US Military following September 11, 2001 – calls on Congress, the President, and his administration to reject the use of violence and militarism in response to the current outbreak of violence in Iraq.
Many of our members deployed to Iraq during the recent US occupation. Those of us who were there know first hand that US military solutions in Iraq do not serve the interests of the Iraqi people. We advocate for the self-determination of all people, in this case the people of Iraq. Any solution to this crisis must come from them.
When the United States invaded and occupied Iraq, the formerly secular country was destabilized. The United States and the Department of Defense intentionally created and agitated sectarian divisions that would not have otherwise existed. The result of this is what we see today, and Iraqi civilians are paying for it.
Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) is seeking an Operations Coordinator to support organizational operations by maintaining office and financial systems. The primary work of the Operations Coordinator consists of tracking and maintaining day-to-day finances, maintaining the office, providing primary support to the Director of Development, and assisting with membership and communication tasks.
Candidates should possess strong skills in writing, editing, and proofreading, data-entry, financial management, and should be very well organized. Ideal candidates are those who are familiar with the work of IVAW, have a strong knowledge of the database “Salsa,” a background in financial management or in IT. Fluency in more than one language is preferable but not required. A detailed job description can be found below.
Vets Outraged by Political Gamesmanship Over Veterans Healthcare Bill
Yesterday members of Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) were disgusted to witness the Republican party engage in acts of cynical political maneuvering. A historic veterans omnibus bill (S.1982) that would have increased the quality of life for millions of veterans instead became a political stunt designed to push through dangerous and diplomatically irresponsible sanctions on Iran. When that stunt didn’t work the GOP blocked the passage of a bill that would have opened up 27 new VA health clinics, strengthened one of many health programs like sexual trauma care and gone far in reducing the benefits backlog. These are just a few of the many opportunities to improve the lives of veterans that political gamesmanship squandered.
“Why would Congressional members put Iran sanctions into a bill meant to care for so many veterans? The answer is that in the end members of Congress like Mitch McConnell don’t actually care about healing veterans.” said Matt Howard, Marine veteran and Communications Director of IVAW.