Korean and U.S. Green Parties issue joint statement against U.S. missile program in Korea
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Green Party of Korea and Green Party of the United States have published a joint statement against the decision to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) in South Korea. The statement follows below.
Jill Stein, 2016 Green nominee for President of the U.S., traveled to South Korea in July along with a peace delegation to support Koreans protesting deployment of THAAD.
For Immediate Release:
Monday, July 31, 2017
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U.S. Greens warn of a new era of bipartisan belligerence that threatens global peace
U.S. Greens said that maneuvers in the Korean peninsula, recent bombing campaigns in Syria, support for devastating Saudi assaults on Yemen, threats against Iran and Venezuela, and sanctions against Russia are adding up to a new era of U.S. belligerence, bloated military budgets, and a danger of greater regional or global conflict in which the U.S. is the aggressor.
Party leaders noted that the current military posture is bipartisan, with Democrats adopting the neocon doctrine that informed the Bush-Cheney administration's disastrous foreign policy. In mid July, 60% of Democrats in the U.S. House voted for a $696.5 billion defense spending bill that surpassed President Trump's proposal.
The Green Party of the United States and Green Party of Korea, along with Green Parties throughout the world, support diplomacy and political solutions instead of military action. Green Parties have called for global nuclear disarmament and a transfer of military funding to humanitarian programs and the fight against climate change.
No to THAAD, Yes to Peace!
A joint statement from the Green Party of Korea and the Green Party of the United States
Deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system (THAAD) will raise military tensions, encourage an arms race in East Asia, and threaten world peace.
The decision to deploy THAAD, which is substantially incorporated into the US missile defense system, will place the Korean Peninsula in irreversible danger. It undermines democracy in Korea and is harmful to the health and life of the local population.
In May, the Moon Jae-in administration was inaugurated in South Korea. This became possible after Korean citizens who had suffered from the previous administration's deep failures and detrimental policies gathered with candles in public squares in protest. Korean citizens won a great victory and initiated a new era. They declared "No to THAAD, Yes to Peace!"
Contrary to citizens' expectations, the Moon Jae-in administration's positions have proven ambiguous. On June 30, in a joint statement of the summit between South Korea and the US, the leaders of the two countries affirmed "the Alliance's fundamental mission to defend the ROK [Republic of Korea] through a robust combined defense posture and the enhancement of mutual security based on the United States-ROK Mutual Defense Treaty."
They also declared "The ROK will continue to acquire the critical military capabilities necessary to lead the combined defense, and detect, disrupt, destroy, and defend against the DPRK’s nuclear and missile threats."
In a meeting with the leaders of the US House of Representatives and Senate during the same visit, President Moon Jae-in said "You had better brush away the suspicion that the new administration might be willing to reverse the deployment of THAAD."
The previous administration of South Korea unilaterally informed Seong-ju residents of their intention to deploy THAAD in the region. President Moon Jae-in, a presidential candidate at the time, said at several points "The deployment of THAAD needs to be ratified by the National Assembly."
Now that he is the president, he is reportedly urging approval of THAAD by the National Assembly for the sake of trust and cooperation in the ROK-US alliance. If a different process yields the same results, how have the aspirations of Korean citizens been fulfilled?
The Trump Administration should cease using the conflict in the Korean Peninsula as an opportunity to make money. The ROK-US alliance is becoming an exercise in economic exploitation by the US. Over the last ten years, South Korea has spent more than 36 trillion Korean wons to purchase US weapons, including the F-35.
The South Korean government has borne most of the expenses -- more than 10 trillion Korean wons to transfer US military bases to various locations. The Green Party of Korea and the Green Party of the United States agree that there is no need to discuss the issue of increasing the share of defense spending or causing extra spending, because THAAD should not be deployed.
The Green Party of Korea and Green Party of the US demand that both governments solve their greater common crises in humanitarian ways instead of joint military maneuvers. The two countries must spend their budgets for education, health care, and the fight against climate change instead of national defense systems.
Both parties warn that the decisions made at the Trump-Moon summit endanger peace, not only in the Korean Peninsula but around the world.
The first step in the effort to ease military tensions and encourage dialogue and cooperation is to reduce mutual military threats. Democracy in both countries means fighting on the side of the weak against systems of war and destruction.
THAAD will not bring peace. Plans to deploy THAAD must be withdrawn immediately.
July 27, 2017
Green Party of Korea
Green Party of the United States
Jill Stein leads US activists in protesting THAAD in South Korea
Stars and Stripes, July 25, 2017
Korean and U.S. Green Parties joint statement against deployment of U.S. missile program in Korea
Press release: Green Party of the United States, September 20, 2016
US peace activists arrive in Korea calling for withdrawal of THAAD deployment
Korea Herald, July 23, 2017
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