• Gary Swing

My "Green Unity" Peace Pledge

On July 17, 2019, the National Committee of the Green Party of the United States passed a resolution to encourage Green Party candidates for federal office to sign a "Green Party Peace Pledge." This resolution encouraged candidates of other parties and independent candidates to sign the pledge as well.

I removed class struggle language from the Green Party's peace pledge before signing it.

Quoting the "Resolution to Encourage Green Party Candidates to Sign Green Party Peace Pledge:"

"Whereas nonviolence is one of the Green Party’s pillars and Ten Key Values;

Whereas it serves the party’s interest to strongly identify the Green Party as a party devoted to the cause of global peace, a party that stands on principle against militarism and U.S. military and other unlawful intervention in the affairs of other nations;

Whereas it is in the interest of the Green Party to have its candidates for federal office advocate for our values and our platform; and

Whereas an end to U.S. military intervention and other unlawful intervention in the affairs of other nations, and a major reduction in military spending, will help allow our society to address the climate crisis, fund a Green New Deal and otherwise serve the public and environmental good;

Therefore, be it resolved that the Green Party of the United States shall encourage Green Party candidates for U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate and President of the United States to sign on to the attached “Peace Pledge” for their respective offices;

That the GP-US shall make the attached Peace Pledges available online, for candidates to sign by that means, with a link listing all candidates who have signed;

That the Peace Pledge shall be made available to candidates of other political parties, and independent candidates, as well as Greens; and

That the Green Party of the United States shall publicize the Peace Pledge as part of a broader effort to make its demand to end war, militarism and unlawful intervention in the affairs of other nations a central issue in the 2020 election campaign.

Further rationale: Regarding the provision that the Peace Pledge be made available to non-Green candidates, one of the purposes of this provision is to help expose the fact that few, if any, corporate party candidates will be willing to sign the Pledge. This will help our candidates answer the ubiquitous “spoiler” argument by pointing to the fact that their opponents will not even go so far as to promise not to use the federal government to murder people or intervene in the affairs of other sovereign nations, and, therefore, that they are not qualified to hold office and do not deserve our votes. In the event that a handful of maverick non-Green candidates do sign the Pledge, the Green Party can still justly take credit for taking leadership on this issue and making peace, anti-militarism and anti-intervention a central issue in 2020. "

This is the unedited language of the Green Party Peace Pledge approved by the National Council of the Green Party of the United States:

Here is the modified language that I agree to:

I, Gary Swing, as a Unity Party nominee for U.S. Representative in Colorado's Second Congressional District, do hereby swear or affirm that:

1) I recognize all acts of military aggression are illegal under established international law, including the Kellogg-Briand Pact of 1928 (46 Stat. 2343), Article 6 of the Nuremberg Charter, recognized as international lawby the International Law Commission of the United Nations in 1950, and Article II, sections 3, 4 and 7, and Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations. Article VI, paragraph 2 of our Constitution makes treaties to which the United States is a signatory a part of the “Supreme law of the land.” Therefore, violations of these international laws are also unconstitutional under U.S. law.

2) I recognize that all acts of military aggression are fundamentally immoral and never justifiable, and that the use of military force can only be justified, if at all, as an act of self-defense, to repel an actual attack on the United States or its people. I categorically reject justifications for war based on claims that pre-emptive action is necessary.

3) I recognize that U.S. military aggression arises from economic motives, aimed at controlling the resources, markets, labor and wealth of other nations. It also enriches the military weapons industry and its beneficiaries, also known as the military-industrial complex. Therefore, I recognize that claims of “national interest,” “humanitarian intervention,” a “responsibility to protect,” "promoting democracy." etc., are nothing more than pretexts, intended to provide cover for the real motives for war, and cannot justify U.S. military aggression.

4) Accordingly, if elected to Congress, I promise to use the power of my office to resist, and attempt to block or reverse, any act of military aggression ordered by the president of the United States, whether or not authorized by Congress. I will demand an immediate end to existing U.S. military interventions, drone strikes and the U.S. troop presence in Africa and the Middle East, and support the closure of U.S. foreign military bases worldwide. I will also use the power of my office to expose the real motives for war and do my best to help mobilize popular resistance to such acts.

5) I recognize that Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution gives Congress the exclusive authority to declare war. In recent decades, Congress has abdicated its responsibilities and authority under that provision and has given the president virtually unchecked authority to order acts of war against other nations with little oversight and even less resistance. If elected to Congress, I promise to invoke Article I, Section 8 in every instance in which the president threatens or authorizes the use of military force. I will insist that, except in the case of an actual attack on the United States, every authorization of the use of military force by the president is unconstitutional unless preceded by a declaration of war by Congress, and would further be illegal under the international laws cited in paragraph 1 of this pledge.

6) If elected to office, I further promise to introduce, or, if already introduced, to support, articles of impeachment against the president of the United States for each and every illegal act of war committed by the president.

7) I oppose any and all efforts of the U.S. government to dominate or intervene in the internal affairs of other nations by means other than military aggression – for example, intervention by the Central Intelligence Agency or other spy agencies, the National Endowment for Democracy or other NGOs, payments to opposition groups, mercenaries, death squads or terrorists groups, or the use of economic sanctions. Such efforts are immoral, violate principles of national self-determination, and are utterly hypcritical in light of recent allegations of foreign interference in U.S. elections. Such forms of intervention are also illegal under international law, including Article 32 of the Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States, adopted by the General Assembly in 1974, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Resolution 2625 (XXV), and Chapter IV, articles 19 and 20 of the Charter of the Organization of American States. My opposition to such forms of U.S. government or government-surrogate intervention does not imply opposition to indepependent efforts to oppose oppression in or by other nations, such as the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement, aimed at reisting Israeli colonization of Palestinian lands.

8) I recognize that U.S. military aggression contributes greatly to the climate crisis and other environmental devastation. I recognize that our government has been literally spending trillions of taxpayer dollars on wars that only make us less safe – dollars that could have been used to combat the climate crisis, create good-paying jobs at home, refurbish our infrastructure, build sustainable energy and transportation, educate our children, pay for college tuition, and provide health care for all. Accordingly, if elected to Congress, I pledge to cut the military budget by a minimum of 50 percent, with the funds thus saved to be allocated to combating the climate crisis through a Green New Deal, and otherwise expended on meeting real human needs.

Signed: Gary Swing, Unity Party candidate for Congress, Colorado

Date: April 4, 2020

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