Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala, President and Vice President in the Green Shadow Cabinet of the United States, shared this message today on the events in Egypt.
In Egypt the voices of tens of millions of people have been heard. Following months of protests and demonstrations calling for early elections, and after weeks of intransigence by the Morsi government, the demand for a change in power has been met.
The Green Shadow Cabinet hopes this change will lead to greater self-determination and participation by all members of Egyptian society; we are concerned by early reports of summary arrests and censorship of the media. We hope and expect that the pressure for democratization will continue, regardless of whether the government is run by Mubarak, Morsi, the military, a transition council or anyone else, until a more inclusive and participatory Egyptian government has stabilized.
The Green Shadow Cabinet supports the right of the Egyptian people to decide what kind of government they have, and who its leaders will be. Leadership of the Egyptian government is not the business of any foreign government, and the United States of America should not back any particular candidate or party, or pressure the Egyptian people to seat anyone. Quite simply, the U.S. should not intervene into the business of Egypt.
The U.S. State Department this past week released an additional $1.3 billion to Egypt in the form of military aid. Today, the White House announced that it was considering ending this aid. While the Green Shadow Cabinet agrees that military aid should be cut, this should be done not as form of intervention, but as a matter of general practice. The U.S. should cut military aid not only to Egypt, but also to Israel ($3 billion annually), Pakistan ($673 million), Jordan ($319 million), and the billions of additional dollars in military aid the U.S. spends annually in over 150 different countries. The U.S. needs to stop military intervention in the affairs of other nations whether directly or through military aid.
In place of using military aid as a foreign policy tool, we support major increases in U.S. humanitarian aid to fight hunger, disease and illiteracy — not people. Further, this kind of aid must not be used to undermine the self-determination of those receiving our support.