On March 20, 2010, it will be seven years since the Invasion of Iraq started.
A multinational force led by troops from the United States and the United Kingdom has occupied Iraq, causing hundreds of thousands of, or over one million, deaths and making refugees of 4.7 million people within and outside Iraq. In its spite of failure to prove Iraq's possession of weapons of mass destruction which was crafted to justify the invasion, the US continues its occupation of Iraq.
President Obama replaced George W. Bush, who pursued his “War on Terror”, and clearly promised the withdrawal of its troops from Iraq. In spite of the promise, the US continues its occupation of Iraq.
Moreover, the President Obama ordered an extra 17,000 soldiers to reinforce his troops in Afghanistan soon after his inauguration in January 2009. In December 2009, announced a further surge of thirty thousand soldiers and their withdrawal starting from July 2011.
We are concerned that more and more people in Afghanistan and now Pakistan continue to be killed and injured by the US initiated war.
We are also concerned that among the US troops sent to Iraq and Afghanistan were those from the US bases stationed in Japan. In 2004, 5,000 Marines based in Okinawa were sent to the battle of Fallujah, Iraq, where 50 died and 221 were injured. It goes without saying that the battle killed far more Iraqis both fighters and civilians.
We do not want the Futenma base to be relocated. We want all Military bases to be removed.
The mis-named “War on Terror” has also continues in Palestine. In its 2008 New Year offensive, the Israeli Forces killed more than 1,400 people and injured 5,000 in Gaza. Gaza remains locked down and East Jerusalem occupied. Israel must accept giving up occupied land for justice and lasting peace.
Neither American nor Israeli militarism cannot bring peace and security to people, just as Japanese militarism failed in Asia and the Pacific in the 20th century.
Withdraw all US bases from Okinawa. End violence in Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine.
WORLD PEACE NOW
(Original in Japanese, summary and translation by Tomoko Kashiwazaki)
http://www.worldpeacenow.jp/ (Japanese site)