Austin City Council Iraq Resolution

RESOLUTION NO. 030206-31

WHEREAS, Americans have always risen to the need to protect our freedom and security, as well as the freedom and security of nations around the world, when a clear danger is demonstrated; and

WHEREAS, this Council supports the men and women serving in the armed forces and honors their commitment to our nation's safety and security; and

WHEREAS, American veterans are deserving of honor and continued recognition; and

WHEREAS, there is an urgent need for genuine multilateral action to eliminate weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and world wide; and

WHEREAS, the Austin City Council condemns all acts of terrorism; and

WHEREAS, Saddam Hussein is a repressive tyrant who spends much of his country's oil wealth on luxuries for himself -- and monuments to himself; and

WHEREAS, the international community supports UN weapons inspections to achieve disarmament in Iraq, and most governments around the world oppose U.S. military action without express consent of the UN Security Council; and

WHEREAS, the imminent threat of Iraqi actions against its neighbors or the United States has not been demonstrated; and

WHEREAS, the United Nations inspectors have said they need more time to complete their work; and

WHEREAS, military action against Iraq would result in the significant loss of lives, both military and civilian; and

WHEREAS, a unilateral preemptive strike risks international destabilization by encouraging other countries to engage in unilateral attacks; and

WHEREAS, the U.S. has not built an anti-Iraq coalition similar to that which underwrote the financial costs of the Gulf War; and

WHEREAS, most American cities and states are suffering fiscal crises that threaten funds for basic services and endanger programs that benefit working people and the poor; and

WHEREAS, military action against Iraq would cost billions of dollars at a time when the American economy is struggling and at a time when the federal government is operating with a deficit; and

WHEREAS, the city of Austin urges the federal government to dramatically increase environmentally sound efforts to reduce dependence on foreign oil including higher fuel efficiency standards, tougher emissions standards for industry, and increased conservation efforts; and

WHEREAS, former President and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Jimmy Carter has called on Iraq to disarm, but also warned: "We must remember that today there are at least eight nuclear powers on earth, and three of them are threatening to their neighbors in areas of great international tension. For powerful countries to adopt a principle of preventive war may well set an example that can have catastrophic consequences;" and

WHEREAS, Carter's fellow Georgian Martin Luther King Jr. told us: "War anywhere intensifies the possibility of war everywhere. When major world powers flaunt the authority of the United Nations and embark on unilateral courses of action they open the door to similar action on the part of other nations in situations of conflict and tension;" and

WHEREAS, Carter also said: "Great American power and responsibility are not unprecedented, and have been used with restraint and great benefit in the past. We have not assumed that super strength guarantees super wisdom, and we have consistently reached out to the international community to ensure that our own power and influence are tempered by the best common judgment;" NOW, THEREFORE,

BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN:

That the Austin, Texas, City Council goes on record as opposing unilateral preemptive military action against Iraq.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:

That the Council supports granting UN weapons inspectors in Iraq the time they seek to complete their work.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:

That the Austin City Council calls on the federal government to continue working through the UN Security Council towards a diplomatic resolution that brings disarmament in Iraq.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:

That this resolution be forwarded to the president of the United States and to our senatorial and congressional delegation.

ADOPTED: February 6, 2003

Shirley A. Brown

City Clerk

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