BY COUNCILORS STEWART AND JOHNSON:
The city council finds as follows:
(a) The Duluth City Council supports the more than one million brave men and women deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001, honors the memory of those who have lost their lives in the war, and supports the families who have lost their loved ones; further, the Duluth City Council considers the men and women who serve in our armed forces to be an extraordinary gift, for they volunteered to leave their homes and families and risk their lives everyday in the line of duty, and they do it with honor; and
(b) Throughout the state members of the emergency medical services, and local police and fire departments, many of whom have been called to serve, are our first line of defense against terrorism and our first responders in emergencies and disasters; and
(c) The United States military occupation of Iraq has placed strains on the capacity of the United States armed forces, both active duty and reserve and the National Guard; and
(d) Many volunteer members of the armed forces are entering into their third and fourth deployments to Iraq; and
(e) The war in Iraq, now in its fourth year, has caused:
(1) The deaths of more than 3,140 service men and women and tens of thousands of Iraqis;
(2) The physical and psychological wounding and disabling of more than 23,530 service men and women and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis; and
(3) The destruction of the homes, communities, and livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis; and
(f) More than $378 billion (nearly $9 billion every month) has been appropriated by congress to fund military operations and reconstruction in Iraq when the congressional budget office (CBO), prior to commencement of military action in Iraq, estimated the costs of the conflict at $21 to $33 billion; and
(g) The war has resulted in the devastation of Iraqis’ physical and social infrastructure and threatens the lives of Iraqi civilians and the men and women who compose the ranks of U.S. and other occupying forces; and
(h) Hundreds of similar resolutions have been enacted and registered throughout the country; and
(i) It is the duty of the city council to act on behalf and in the best interest of the citizens of Duluth; and
(j) The city council is empowered to make such resolutions as may be necessary to protect the public interest and for the preservation of health, welfare, peace, and order; and
(k) Just this month, more than 20,000 additional American sons and daughters, mothers and fathers, have been ordered into battle.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the city council of the city of Duluth that the city of Duluth urges the United States government to:
(a) Commence planning an orderly and comprehensive withdrawal of United States military personnel from Iraq; and
(b) Support our troops by ensuring that returning veterans receive compensation and care, including full mental and physical health, education, disability, and rehabilitation benefits; and
(c) Provide the people of Iraq with appropriate non-military aid as shall be necessary for the security of Iraqis citizens and for the rebuilding of Iraq; and
(d) Establish a plan for the ongoing transition of responsibility for internal security activities to the military forces of the Iraqi government; and
(e) Pursue security and stability in Iraq through diplomacy.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a copy of this resolution is forwarded immediately to United States President George W. Bush, Senator Norm Coleman, Senator Amy Klobuchar, Representative Jim Oberstar, and members of the Minnesota State House and Senate representing Duluth.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE: This resolution memorializes the council’s position on an issue of concern.