Minnesota demands U.S. withdraw from Afghanistan
Minneapolis, MN – On March 26, a coalition of Twin Cities area peace and anti-war groups marked 18 years of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq with a protest calling for an end to “endless U.S. wars.” The crowed lined up in front of the office of Minnesota U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar.
MN Peace Action Coalition called for the protest and announced, “The effects of U.S. militarism around the world are felt at home with militarization of police and brutalization of communities at home. The wars abroad are felt on the streets at home, as funds for housing, jobs, health care and other human needs go to the Pentagon war machine.” The statement concludes by saying, “18 years after the invasion of Iraq, thousands of people have died in U.S. wars, these wars have become an endless exercise in futility, these wars must end, from Iraq, to Afghanistan to Syria.”
Meredith Aby-Keirstead, an organizer with the MN Anti-War Committee, started the program, “It’s important we are out today to pressure the Democratic Party from the White House to the Senate for their continuation of U.S. war. While we are here to protest Biden’s policy, we are in front of Senator Amy Klobuchar’s office. When she was running for president, she, like Biden, promised to continue U.S. imperialism – although they label it as ‘leadership’ – so it’s no surprise that she has been silent as our senator while Biden has ordered airstrikes on Syria and announced he’ll keep U.S. forces in Afghanistan.”
Aby-Keirstead continued, “Trump said that he’d pull U.S. troops out on May 1, and I’ll admit that was one of the only things he said he’d do that I supported. Biden however has reneged on the U.S. promise to withdraw troops. The U.S. has been at war with Afghanistan since October 2001. The U.S. has been occupying Afghanistan for more than 19 years and through four presidential administrations. We need to send a loud message that this war needs to end.”
During the pandemic more Americans have started to question how the U.S. spends its resources. The war in Afghanistan has cost the U.S. taxpayers $978 billion since 2001. “This horrendous cost has been successfully hidden from the U.S. public and is the elephant – these days the donkey – in the room. This must change,” said Sarah Martin, who spoke for Women Against Military Madness.
The protest was initiated by the Minnesota Peace Action Coalition and endorsed by the Anti-War Committee, Climate Justice Committee, Women Against Military Madness and Veterans for Peace.