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To UM Agency Heads - Let Me Know The Next Time You Schedule Protest Of Terrorism

From: DGSimp
Sent: Saturday, January 13, 2007 2:14 PM
To: ucmpage.org
Subject: This is the letter I sent to James Winkler

I am very pleased that you are so interested in the safety of our troops. One huge question remains...How in the world can you equate Martin Luther King, Jr's stance for peace and freedom with your call to pull troops away from the defenseless and those seeking to live a life free from oppression and violence? If you want to act like MLK, there is something you could do to help pull the troops out. MLK marched between the setting of violence and injustice and those who were causing it. Why not go over to Iraq and stand between those who cause the killing by bombing innocent people and those who are of the opposite religious persuasion (isn't that called bigotry and prejudice to the extreme?). Why don't you volunteer to stand in the open in the dark to keep the killers away from the families of those who were do public service so they can be safe. Why don't you go to Iran and ask why their "diplomats" were caught in Baghdad where they were arming, training and enabling attacks against Iraq? I guess you think this will all go away if we simply go home. Strange, it was going on when Saddam was in power before we got there. This kind of thinking is so reminiscent of the statements and actions made by some bishops before the war and before Desert Storm. They were willing to march in our streets as a protest of our actions and to even go to Iraq when we might "do something". They were willing to sign statements against Pres. Bush as if they spoke for me as a United Methodist (though they didn't ask for my opinion or anyone else's that I know) Strange - how I never saw any of them - or from your group - marching in our streets to protest the actions of Saddam against his people. I never saw any of you standing before Saddam in Iraq because of the way he treated/tortured his opponents and those of the Kurdish background. You would hold more creditability if you opinions and statements weren't so myopic. I will be by your side in a protest when you call one in D.C. against Iran for bringing in weapons and enabling their fighters to blow up innocent women and children in the marketplace or at funerals or at Mosques (remember those? They are the buildings we respect while they shoot from them and hide their weapons in them. Oh, that's right - I have never read one protest from you on that either).

We tried working through the UN, remember? All that happened was that more people died as Saddam pocketed the money ($25B) as we tried to work the system. Other countries (Russia, France - circumvented the system and made money and undid the effects of our working through the UN. I think it is time for you to go to Iraq and march through the streets (without the protection of the US troops you so want out of there) and bring the peace that MLK sought to bring. After all, freedom, justice, hope and life must not be what our troops are after. Let's do it your way.

You quote MLK who said, “wide range of destruction…” Have you ever seen a war fought with such tight restrictions the military places on itself in order to ensure only the targeted get hit? I have walked in the midst of the warriors as they trained. I sat on the walls and floors as they learned how to “take a house” without hurting the non-combatant. Yes, there are others who get hurt – much of which is caused by the enemy placing themselves in the midst of civilians, etc. And there are none who fret more over those wounded/killed when they are not the enemy than our troops who work so hard not to have them involved even as they risk their own lives to protect them. (read the recent story where our troops stopped an action - even at risk of those already in contact with the enemy) in order to help a sick Iraqi citizen.

You mention nothing of the good which has happened because they (Iraqi people) have been given a future. You speak nothing of schools for children, hospitals actually having hospital supplies. You speak nothing of a growing economy or of people having a future. You speak nothing of the “destruction” caused by Saddam – the destruction of human value/worth as people were tortured, families left to starve, a people punished by the draining of water, a people being gassed… . You speak nothing of the fact that the killing rate in Iraq's major cities is less than in our own major cities - if the last report was correct. Do you march the streets here or hold rallies in D.C. against the crime rate/murder rate here?

I know of very few who are for war for war’s sake. No one wants even the need for force. It is hard to explain to the people who are being gassed, tortured, etc how much we love them and how we will sit and pray for them as they die each day. I know they, too, want peace. Can you speak to them?

Let me know when you schedule that other rally/protest against the bombers and killers of the innocents and against Iran. Would you be the voice for the voiceless? the power for the powerless? the defense for the defenseless? the future for those who would have no future? I will hold your arm up as you raise your clenched fist against such hatred which takes it all away.

Donald Simpson
Elder UMC

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