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Monday, April 6, 2009

Quaker Group Picks 6th Anniversary of Baghdad’s Fall to Launch CountdownToWithdrawal.Org

PHILADELPHIA  (April 6, 2009) – The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) will observe the sixth anniversary of the fall of Baghdad this week by launching a national campaign to  hold President Obama to his pledge to remove all combat troops from Iraq by August 2010.

On Thursday, April 9, the AFSC will launch CountdownToWithdrawal.Org, which also can be reached via the AFSC’s website,,  to track the troop departure from Iraq, counting down the next 1,000 days to the end of the occupation.   

“While we applaud President Obama’s desire to end the war, we believe all troops should come home as soon as possible,” says Mary Zerkel, national coordinator for the AFSC’s Cost of War Program.”By tracking the actual withdrawals on a weekly basis, we will both hold the President to his promise and help him do it.”

Each day, the latest figures on casualties, troop levels and resources in Iraq will be tracked at  Supporters also will be asked to contact members of Congress with a message about Obama’s plan, based on the following:

  • Stop It. Troop withdrawal is good, but almost three years is too long. Each day the conflict continues, U.S. troops and Iraqis die, and our government spends $720 million a day on the occupation of Iraq.
  • Fix It. The U.S. has both responsibilities and obligations in the aftermath of conflict. We support an Iraqi-led reconstruction.
  •  Don’t Repeat It. We must learn from the tragedy of Iraq: No more wars based on lies and political expediency. Wars only result in massive suffering.


The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker organization that includes people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace and humanitarian service. Its work is based on the belief in the worth of every person and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice.