War is Money Down the Drain: CODEPINK Protests Afghanistan Escalation

(Washington, DC – November 30, 2009) As President Obama prepares to issue his long-awaited plan for the U.S. war in Afghanistan, activists nationwide prepare to take to the streets to oppose the escalation of the U.S. war in Afghanistan and to demand instead for a redirection of resources toward human needs.  Concerned citizens, many of whom helped elect the president based on an anti-war platform, will gather publicly to watch the President's address on December 1 at 8 pm EST.

CODEPINK activists strongly oppose the addition of troops to the already volatile situation in Afghanistan. “The United States cannot solve Afghanistan's problems with military solutions,” said CODEPINK co-founder Jodie Evans, who recently returned from a fact-finding trip to Afghanistan. “Adding troops will lead to more civilian casualties which will lead to more recruits for the Taliban—and a protracted war that the American people don't support. This is not the ‘hope' so many voted for.”

Co-founder Medea Benjamin: “The people of Afghanistan are looking for diplomatic and economic support, not soldiers, and the American people are looking for a way out of our economic morass. Spending a million dollars per soldier for another 30,000-plus soldiers is only deepening our economic crisis. Enough is enough.”

Protests are planned nationwide, including:

• Washington, DC: 11 a. m Dec. 1, March from Treasury Dept to White House, another rally at White House 5 p. m. on Dec 1 & 2 [contact: medea@codepinkalert.org]

• Berkeley: 3:30 p.m. Dec. 2, 64 Shattuck Square (gather at Marine Officers Recruiting Station), then to join the San Francisco protest at 5 p.m. [contact: info@bayareacodepink.org]

• Bangor, ME: 5 p.m., Dec. 2, Margaret Chase Smith Federal Building, 202 Harlow St. [contact: Lisa Savage, 207-643-2356]

• Boston: 5 p.m., Dec. 2, Boston Common, Brewer Fountain, near Park Street Station [contact: Cole Harrison, 617-466-9274]

• Chicago: 5 p.m., Dec. 2 and Saturday, Federal Plaza, Adams & Dearborn Streets [contact: codepinkchicago@yahoo.com]

• Detroit: 4:00 p.m., Dec. 2, Federal Building, 477 Michigan Ave., [joellengilchrist@yahoo.com]

• Hartford, CT: 5 p.m., Dec. 2, Federal Building, 450 Main St. [contact: Marissa Jaczewska, 860-216-0566]

• Killeen, TX: Nov. 30, 11 a.m., press conference, 17 S. College St., Under the Hood Café

• Los Angeles, CA: 5 p.m., Dec. 2, Federal Building, Wilshire & Veterans, [contact: codepinkla@gmail.com, 310-827-4320]

• New Haven, CT: 5 p.m., December 2, Federal Building, 150 Court Street [contact: Chris Garaffa, 203-803-9066]

New York: 6 p.m., Dec. 2, Times Square [contact: codepinknyc@gmail.com]

Orange County: 5:30 p.m., Dec. 2, Plaza Square (Chapman Ave & Glassell St) in Orange, CA [cathy@codepinkoc.org]

• Phoenix, AZ: 4:30 p.m., Dec. 2, 24th St. and Camelback, marching to the offices of Senators Kyl and McCain [contact: caterliz@gmail.com]

Pittsburgh, PA: Dec. 2, University of Pittsburgh, Campus, [contact: codepinkpgh@gmail.com, 412-389-3216]

Portland, ME: 5 p.m., Dec. 2, Monument Square [contact: Lisa Savage, 207-643-2356]

Portland, OR: 5 p.m., Dec. 2, SW Madison & SW Third

Providence, RI: 5 p.m., Burnside Park [contact: Kathy Lessuck, 401-633-5063]

• San Francisco: [contact: Janet Weil, codepinkjanet@gmail.com]

* 11 a.m., Dec. 1, Press conference, New Federal Building, 7th & Mission

* 5 p.m., Dec. 1, Activist gathering to watch the President's address,

Tommy's Joynt at Van Ness & Geary;

* 5 p.m., Dec. 2, rally, Powell & Market, organized by ANSWER

* 5 p.m., Dec. 2, Federal Building, candlelight vigil organized by AFSC.

For more information, visit http://www.codepinkalert.org/calendar.php?id=3326

CODEPINK is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, stop new wars, and redirect resources to healthcare, education, green jobs and other life-affirming activities. CODEPINK rejects foreign policies based on domination and aggression, and instead calls for policies based on diplomacy, compassion and a commitment to international law.