Bullshit Philosophy

Half-assed political and religious commentary from a cynical left-winger

BLAST FROM THE PAST: Keep the Illinois National Guard Out of Iraq

Posted by Kevin on December 20, 2008

[originally posted 9/20/06]

To be honest, I didn’t write most of this; it’s actually condensed from Whitney’s more lengthy position paper on the subject. The task they gave me was to shorten it to be usable as a press release.

So, the fact that I, uh… partially contributed to this has nothing to do with why I’m posting it. 😛

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 19, 2006


Jennifer Rose, Campaign Manager
Whitney for Governor, whitneyforgov.org

Tim Tacker, Communications Director
Whitney for Governor, whitneyforgov.org

As governor, Green Party candidate Rich Whitney will work to end the involvement of the Illinois National Guard in the occupation of Iraq and will prevent any further mobilization, making him the only gubernatorial candidate to have a position on this important issue.

As a congressman, Rod Blagojevich voted to authorize President Bush to attack Iraq. Rich Whitney opposed the war before it began, understanding that the real goal was to ensure control of Iraq’s oil and economy by giant U.S. corporations – the same corporations that buy the votes of Democratic and Republican politicians.

“I will not consent to sending our young men and women to fight and die in the service of corporate greed, in an ill-conceived war that is making us less safe and more hated around the world and that is starving our state and local governments of funds to meet human needs at home,” Whitney said.

As commander in chief of the Illinois National Guard, the governor has the authority to veto deployment of Guard units for federal duty. Whitney acknowledged that, in response to the refusal of several state governors to consent to mobilizations for operations in Central America under the Reagan administration, Congress limited the power of governors to veto a mobilization “because of any objection to the location, purpose, type, or schedule of such active duty.” However, he argued, this leaves open the possibility of a veto because of the illegality of the mission.

The invasion and continuing occupation of Iraq is plainly illegal under
international law, particularly the U.N. Charter, which “as a whole imposes a general prohibition on the use of force to resolve conflicts in international relations,” Whitney said. The only exceptions are a specific authorization by the U.N. Security Council or the right of self-defense, the latter of which did not apply because the U.S. was neither attacked nor even threatened by Iraq.

As such, Whitney said, the invasion and occupation were and remain acts of aggression, a war crime under international law. Further, he argued that as a government official, he would be legally required to not participate in such a crime by the Charter of the Nuremberg Tribunal, which states that “Complicity in the commission of a crime against peace, a war crime, or a crime against humanity… is a crime under international law.”

“I will not be even a complicit or passive participant in a crime under
international law,” Whitney said. “I will do everything possible to prevent the sacrifice of any more human life in the service of such a crime.”


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