Last week John Kerry delievered a speech at Georgetown U and called for the Bush administration to bring 20,000 troops home by the holidays. Today, John Kerry sent out the following email, asking his supporters to help demand that Bush puts forward a detailed plan on Iraq:
No more shell games. No more false reports of progress. No more misleading rhetoric about “staying as long as it takes.”
It’s time for the American people to demand that George W. Bush put forward a clear understandable plan for achieving America’s goals in Iraq and bringing the vast majority of our troops home by the end of 2006.
The time is overdue for a plan with a clarity and vision equal to the valor and sacrifices of America’s brave armed forces. Help make that kind of plan a reality by supporting our “20,000 troops home over the holidays” campaign. We’re kicking off this vitally important initiative with a clear goal – collecting 20,000 signatures a day each and every day until Thanksgiving.
It won’t be easy to achieve our goal. But, every day that we gather another 20,000 Americans to our side, we’ll be upping the pressure on the Bush administration to come up with the concrete, detailed plan for Iraq that our fighting men and women deserve.
And, with your help, we won’t stop there.
– We’ll place our “20,000 home over the holidays” message on billboards in the home districts of Republican leaders.
– We’ll organize 20,000 letters to the editors in newspapers all across the nation.
– We’ll set up days of action and, in 24 hours, flood Congress and the White House with 20,000 phone calls.
– We’ll run newspaper and radio ads advancing our “20,000 home over the holidays” message.
– We’ll organize personal email campaigns with tens of thousands of people sending “20,000 troops home over the holidays” postcards to their friends and neighbors.
Can I count on you to join me in this effort? I hope so – because we can’t let the Bush administration’s “stay as long as it takes” approach stay in place any longer.
By galvanizing the American public around our specific goal of responding to the December elections in Iraq with the withdrawal of 20,000 troops, we can put an end, once and for all, to this administration’s directionless approach to the disastrous situation that their failures have created in Iraq.
The way forward in Iraq is not to pull out precipitously or merely promise to “stay as long as it takes.” Neither course does justice to the sacrifices of America’s soldiers. To undermine the insurgency, we have to simultaneously pursue both a political settlement and the withdrawal of American combat forces linked to specific, responsible benchmarks.
Our “20,000 troops home over the holidays” drive is about taking a first critical step.
Upon the completion of the December elections, we can start the process of reducing our forces by withdrawing 20,000 troops over the course of the holidays. You can provide the momentum for this campaign.
It will be hard for this administration, but it is essential to acknowledge that the insurgency will not be defeated unless our troop levels are drawn down, starting immediately after successful elections in December.
The draw down of troops should be tied not to an arbitrary timetable, but to a specific timetable for transfer of political and security responsibility to Iraqis and realignment of our troop deployment. That timetable must be real and strict. The goal should be to withdraw the bulk of American combat forces by the end of 2006. If the administration does its work correctly, that is achievable.
If George W. Bush can’t achieve this first critical goal, then, at the start of 2006, we will demand that Congress acts to take the decision out of his hands.
And, if the Republican Congress fails to call the Bush administration to account, we will use the 2006 elections to take the decision out of their hands. We won’t stop until we succeed.
Sign our “20,000 home over the holidays” petition right now: johnkerry.com/action/20000
If we act together – if we drive our message home that America wants “20,000 troops home over the holidays” — we can make this a real turning point. Let’s move forward with the conviction and seriousness of purpose that this moment demands.
P.S. We’ve set an ambitious goal of 20,000 signatures a day on our “20,000 troops home over the holidays” petition. We can only get there if you do two things – sign the petition yourself and then forward this email to someone who can be part of tomorrow’s 20,000 signatures.