Kucinich Receives "Champion for Peace" AwardCongressman and Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich, has received the first "Champion for Peace" Award in Hollywood from a group of families of military members.
Ohio Congressman and Democratic Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich, the only Presidential candidate who voted against the original Iraq war authorization and every funding appropriation since, has received the first-ever Champion for Peace Award in Hollywood from a group of families of military members opposed to U.S. involvement in the Iraq War.
Military Families Speak Out honored Kucinich for being “a strong advocate for bringing the troops home now and never wavering from that position despite the politics going on,” said Pat Alviso, leader of the organization’s Long Beach and South Bay Chapter. His son is currently serving in Iraq.
At the presentation ceremony at the corner of Hollywood and Vine, blocks away from tonight’s Academy Awards event, Kucinich said, “The military families are so deserving of support, I think of what it must be like to have a son or daughter in Iraq, knowing they’re in harm’s way, knowing that there is not a military victory to be won, and to me it’s an obligation to support them and an honor to support them.” That support should come in the form of a withdrawal of American forces from an increasingly deadly and dangerous situation.
“America must leave Iraq,” said Kucinich. “We must leave there now,” he said. “If we really love our troops as the military families do,” Kucinich told the crowd, “we should bring them home,” he said. He added, “The debate in Washington will have politicians asserting the best way to support the troops is to leave them in this civil war. They should listen to the military families and soldiers themselves who are caught in an impossible situation.” The war, he said, is “based on lies.”
Alviso told reporters at the event that he hopes Kucinich’s position, his efforts to tend the war, and the award he received “will inspire other Congressional representatives to follow his lead, cut the funding and bring the troops home now.” The organization and almost two dozen other groups, including Iraq Veterans Against the War and Veterans for Peace, are planning a “Bring Our Troops Home Now” rally and peace vigil today at the same famed Hollywood intersection.
Kucinich unveiled a 12-point plan last month (www.kucinich.us) to withdraw U.S. forces and contractors from Iraq, establish a United Nations peacekeeping force, convene a regional conference to assist in stabilization and provide funding for reconstruction, jobs and reparations in Iraq.