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APRIL 15, 2003
4:39 PM
CONTACT:  Win Without War
Jessica Smith: 202-236-3002
Trevor FitzGibbon: 202-246-5303
Brendan McCarthy, 202-528-5137
Fenton Communications, 202-822-5200
Who's Next? As the Bush Administration Eyes Syria, Anti-War Leaders Tim Robbins & Tom Andrews Call on the White House to End the "First-Strike" Doctrine
Speakers Challenge Media to Accurately and Fairly Report Events of the War

Read Tim Robbins speech
Read Tom Andrews speech

WASHINGTON - April 15 - At a luncheon at the National Press Club today, Actor/Director Tim Robbins and Win Without War National Director, former Congressman Tom Andrews, called on media to act as a check and balance to the Bush administration and its pursuit of the “First-Strike” doctrine.

“The war was sold to the American public as something that it wasn’t,” said Tom Andrews. “Why is it that Americans continue to believe that Saddam Hussein is connected to events of 9/11 and that the Iraqi people have a relationship with Al-Qaeda? Not only is this patently false, but it seems that the rest of the world knows this administration is misleading the American public. Why don’t we?”

Andrews explained that the “Doctrine of Pre-emption” was launched in 1997, but it took the attack of September 11th to move the agenda. As Bush now eyes Syria, it has become clear that the war with Iraq has opened the door for future invasions.

“Given that the Congress has abdicated responsibility and the U.N. has been cast aside, unless the media is able and willing to challenge the administration’s manipulation of facts, Americans may find themselves at war again. We are talking about future wars that are avoidable, that fuel terrorism, that isolate us from historic allies whose cooperation we need to fight terrorism effectively, that undermine the rule of law, that heap enormous costs on the American people alone, that serve as partial justification for the suspension of civil liberties, and that make all Americans less secure,” said Andrews.

Actor/Director Tim Robbins, who has been an outspoken critic of the war said: “We are living in a crucial moment. As we eye Syria and begin the chatter that leads to war there, it is imperative for those who oppose the notion of the United States as unchecked Empire to speak out strongly against a foreign policy of military intimidation. We are, as a nation, so much nobler than that.

“Recent intimidations to free speech by certain talk radio hosts, by Clear Channel Broadcasting, and by the National Baseball Hall of Fame have to be met head on. Any instance of intimidation to free speech should be battled against. Any acquiescence to intimidation at this point will only lead to more intimidation,” said Robbins.

Win Without War members include: American Friends Service Committee, Business Leaders for Sensible Priorities, Campaign for UN Reform, Council for a Livable World, Conference of Major Superiors of Men, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Families USA, Fourth Freedom Forum, Global Exchange, Greenpeace, Leadership Conference of Women Religious, MoveOn, NAACP, National Council of Churches, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Organization for Women (NOW), NETWORK - A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby, Oxfam America, Pax Christi USA, Peace Action, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Rainbow/Push Coalition, Shalom Center, Sierra Club, Sojourners, Soulforce, The Tikkun Community, TrueMajority, Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations, United Church of Christ, United Methodist Church General Board of Church and Society, USAction, Us Foundation, Veterans for Common Sense, Veterans for Peace, Women's Action for New Directions (WAND), Working Assets, Artists United to Win Without War, and Musicians United to Win Without War.


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