REAL NATIONAL SECURITY REQUIRES A CHANGE IN NATIONAL PRIORITIES
WHEREAS, our nation, state and community face the most severe economic crisis since the Great Depression; and
WHEREAS, 58 cents of every tax dollar spent by the Federal Government on discretionary appropriations pays for past, present and future wars and military operations; and
WHEREAS, interest payments on the military portion of the national debt alone consumed $30.25 billion in 2009; and
WHEREAS, for every $1 billion spent on the military 11,600 jobs are created, while for the same billion dollars in consumption derived from tax cuts creates 14,800 job; investments in clean energy create 17,100 jobs; funding health care creates 19,600 jobs; and spending on education creates 29,100 jobs; and
WHEREAS, the Pentagon budget was $297 billion when President Clinton left office, and the proposed 2011 fiscal year Pentagon budget is $708 billion – more than double – and military spending by other agencies raises that total to more than $1 trillion; and
WHEREAS, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have already cost in excess of $1 trillion and the priceless lives of nearly 5500 U.S. troops, wounding more than 100,000 others, and by some estimates more than a million civilian casualties, and when future medical treatment for injured veterans, replacement of equipment and armament, interest payments on the military portion of the debt, and other residual costs are factored in, by 2017 total expenditures are projected to run between $3 and $5 trillion; and
WHEREAS, instead of making us safer, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have created more enemies and actually increased the risk of terrorism.
NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Council of the City of Berkeley that the Mayor and City Council of the City of Berkeley, by the adoption of this resolution, calls upon the Congress and the President to change course by ending the unsustainable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and to dramatically shift our national priorities to meet the needs of Americans.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that our nation’s security can be more effectively enhanced by using our resources to address the causes of global poverty, hunger, and disease that are the seedbed for conflict and by relying primarily on diplomacy and international cooperation rather than force of arms to promote peaceful relations with other countries and peoples.