Broader foreign policy News Things We Can Do

Oregon Divesting from Iran: Bad Idea

I just learned from the American-Iranian Friendship Council that the  Oregon Senate passed a resolution calling for the state to divest from businesses with ties to Iran. This is a poorly-conceived bill,  based on “enemy-of-the-month” thinking that has placed Iran in the crosshairs for the last couple years (again).

The resolution attempts to create false links between Iran and our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, but will possibly wind up depriving people of food (for example, Oregon farmers sell wheat to Iran) and curtail legitimate businesses when we’re all already facing hard economic times.

Senate Bill 633 passed the Senate 27-3, but I’m proud that my Senator,  State Senator Margaret Carter, did the right thing and voted against it along with Senators Burdick and Metsger. (To see the vote results, you can run a search for SB 633 on the Oregon Legislature’s bill search page).

We have to make sure that this horrible bill doesn’t pass the Oregon House.  Rather than continuing to demonize the Iranian people, we should be looking for ways to decrease tensions in the region.  I’ve already emailed my rep, the great Representative Chip Shields, earlier today.

This could totally sneak in under the radar and will cause hardship for many ordinary people in Oregon and Iran. Take five and send a message to your Representative today before this bill is sitting on the Governor’s desk.  (Not sure who to email?  Let the Oregon Legislative website help you find your Rep)

Broader foreign policy News Things We Can Do

Why Provoke Iran? Do We Need More Wars?

No, we don’t need a war with Iran. As if we haven’t created enough problems occupying Iraq and Afghanistan, now we’re going to blockade Iran? What purpose does a blockade serve except to provoke them? True Majority sent me this action alert about opposing HR 362. And United for Peace and Justice has called for three days of action, July 19-21.

All this comes on the heels of the New Yorker article that came out earlier this month about how we’re spending $400 million to destabilize the government of Iran, and look around for nuclear weapons that our own intelligence assessments say don’t seem to exist.

And of course, here in Portland, we have already passed a public declaration of our opposition to military action against Iran. We passed it last March and then we reiterated it to our congressional delegation in June.

And yet, they need to be reminded more. To keep track of the status of HR 362, I’m found a widget from Open Congress:

Don’t attack Iran!