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ACTION ALERT

Stop U.S. Military Involvement in Yemen

In 1982, the Church of the Brethren affirmed its opposition to war in the statement on Opposition to War and Conscription.This statement drew from our long history of nonviolence, referencing several older statements:

"Our understanding of the life and the teaching of Christ, as revealed in the New Testament, led our Annual Conference to state in 1785 that we should not 'submit to the higher powers so as to make ourselves their instruments to shed human blood.' In 1918 at our Annual Conference we stated that 'we believe that war or any participation in war is wrong and incompatible with the spirit, example, and teachings of Jesus Christ.' Again in 1934 Annual Conference resolved that 'all war is sin. We, therefore, cannot encourage, engage in, or willingly profit from armed conflict at home or abroad. We cannot, in the event of war, accept military service or support the military machine in any capacity.'"

From Afghanistan to Yemen, the United States military is actively engaging in violent conflict. Most of these military engagements have not been debated or authorized by Congress- instead, they have been justified under legislation originally meant to enable the U.S. government to go after al-Qaeda and its affiliates.

This legislation (the Authorization to Use Military Force) has had far-reaching impacts- including in Yemen. Using an overly-broad interpretation of the legislation, the United States has partnered with Saudi Arabia to provide military support to the Yemeni government. The U.S. also continues to carry out drone strikes and intelligence operations within Yemeni borders.

The country of Yemen is currently experiencing a civil war, a conflict that is exacerbated by the presence of foreign powers like Saudi Arabia and the United States. The humanitarian situation is dire- many Yemenis lack access to food, water, sanitation and medical care. Over 10 million people lack adequate food and water. Families are living in the midst of military conflict, which has killed over 10,000 civilians and injured an additional 40,000.

In line with the Church of the Brethren's peace stance and commitment to nonviolent solutions to conflict, we urge the Senate to pass Senate Joint Resolution 54, which would require Congress to debate and vote on legislation authorizing U.S. military involvement in Yemen. If they do not explicitly authorize involvement in Yemen, the U.S. will automatically cease operations in Yemen after 30 days.

Call your Senators and tell them to vote YES on Senate Joint Resolution 54!
(Find your Senators here)

Sample message:

As a member of the Church of the Brethren, I am greatly concerned by the United States’ military involvement in the Yemeni civil war. Our involvement is contributing to civilian deaths and a humanitarian disaster, and Congress has not authorized this military action.

I urge you to support Senate Joint Resolution 54, which will require the United States to end operations in Yemen within 30 days unless Congress passes legislation explicitly authorizing such operations. Can your office commit to voting "YES" on S.J. Res 54?

In Christ's peace,

Tori Bateman
Peacebuilding and Policy Associate
Church of the Brethren, Office of Public Witness
Washington, D.C.


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For more information about the public witness ministries of the Church of the Brethren, contact Nathan Hosler, Director, Office of Public Witness:

Nathan Hosler
337 North Carolina Ave SE
Washington, DC 20003
nhosler@brethren.org
717-333-1649

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Church of the Brethren Action Alerts are a ministry of the denomination's Global Mission and Service and Office of Peacebuilding and Policy in Washington, D.C. Contact Global Mission and Service at the Church of the Brethren General Offices, 1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120; 800-323-8039 or mission@brethren.org.

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