Nicolas J S Davies

A collection of published articles and letters to policymakers regarding the crisis in United States foreign policy by Nicolas J S Davies.

Location: North Miami, Florida, United States

Friday, March 12, 2004

Letter to Congress on Madrid Bombings

The Hon. Kendrick Meek
1039 Longworth House Office Building
Washington DC 20515

Friday, March 12, 2004

Dear Kendrick,

I am writing to you today on three inter-connected issues: the bombings in Madrid; the U.S. trade deficit; and the presidential election campaign.

Yesterday’s bombings in Madrid were a tragic escalation in the “War on Terror”, and will doubtless be cited to justify further escalation by the U.S. and Spain. On the other hand, this may be an appropriate time to question this whole policy. In two and a half years, we have succeeded only in escalating a problem with a specific group, Al Quaeda, into an intractable global pandemic of terrorism. U.S. troops are now deployed in at least 130 countries, and their enemies are becoming equally ubiquitous. We blame them; they blame us, in a chicken-and-egg argument punctuated by horrible violence. We focus on their victims in New York, Bali and Madrid; they point to ours in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq. As the casualties mount, it will only be harder to make peace. The appropriate response was always to treat terrorism primarily as a police problem, to limit military action to very specific and legitimate targets, to scrupulously avoid collective retribution, and to work much harder on mutual understanding, education, and political and economic development.

American political rhetoric usually treats “national security” and economics as separate issues. However, the latest balance of trade figures suggest that Mr. Bush’s militarist foreign policy is continuing to undermine “Brand U.S.A.” and hurt U.S. exports. The big question remains, “How long will foreigners who fear our foreign policy and don’t want to buy our products continue to increase their dollar reserves by $1,600,000,000 per day?” Wall Street is growing understandably nervous.

Lastly, new campaign commercials accuse John Kerry of wanting to “delay defending America until the United Nations approved”. I hope that Senator Kerry and other Democrats will respond with an unequivocal commitment to the U.N. Charter in accordance with Article VI of the United States Constitution, which states that international treaties “shall be the supreme Law of the Land”. The war in Iraq and the detentions at Guantanamo are clearly illegal, and the coup in Haiti and the attempted one in Equatorial Guinea also appear to have involved illegal actions by our government. International law provides a stable global environment that serves our country’s widespread interests. It is irresponsible for American political leaders to foster the illusion that our country can act as an international outlaw without strategic and economic consequences.

Yours sincerely


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