November 12, 2002 Special Town Meeting
WHEREAS: We as a people and a nation must not retreat from our
commitment to act as a constructive force within the community of nations.
Human progress resides in the respect for international law and the
sovereignty of nations. As the strongest of these nations, the U.S.
has a special responsibility to uphold and abide by broadly supported
principles of international behavior such as those laid out in the U.N.
WHEREAS: The U.N. Charter decrees: 1. No nation can use military
fo rce except in self-defense (arts. 39, 51); 2. The Security Council
is the only body that can authorize the use of force (art. 24; ch. VII);
& 3. Only the Security Council can decide what action can be taken
to maintain or restore international peace and security. (art. 39);
WHEREAS: We view with great alarm two major changes in U.S.
foreign policy : a new policy of "preemptive" attack, and a concerted
determination to act unilaterally in world affairs. Both policies are
counter to a half-century of successes in establishing safeguards minimizing
violence in the conduct of international relations; and
WHEREAS: We regret Congress' abdication of its responsibility,
reminiscent of the shameful Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. Congress must
not give away the authority to determine when war is to be declared.;
WHEREAS: The desire of people the world over is to feel safe
and secure. The surest longterm path to safety and security, both domestic
and foreign, is through collaborative efforts under international law
- not through belligerence and unilateralism.
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Brookline Town Meeting:
A. opposes any U.S. attack on Iraq until and unless (1) there is clear
and convincing evidence of a serious and imminent threat of aggression
by Iraq, and (2) the U.N. has determined that collective action is necessary
B. believes that, at this time, neither of these conditions has been
C. requests that the Board of Selectmen transmit this resolution to
our congressional delegation.
Passed by Brookline Town Meeting
Nov. 13, 2002
127 Yes -67 No -10 Abstaining.