United States Vice-President Mike Pence

U.S. Delegation to the 2017 Munich Security Conference Hotel Bayerischer Hof

Promenadenplatz 2--6

80333 München

First by fax 089-2120-906 February 18, 2017

An OPEN LETTER on Drones, Our Wars, the Munich Security Conference 2017

Mr. Vice-President:

We hope that your official welcome to Munich means you are visiting us in the interests of peace and disarma- ment. In recent months Munich has also welcomed and opened its doors and its hearts to thousands of ex- hausted and destitute refugees from the war torn and poverty stricken countries of Africa, the Middle East and beyond. These spent children, women and men of all ages are fleeing the effects of terrorism raging in their homelands. Sadly, without the U.S. military involvement, without the supply of U.S. personnel, weapons, logis- tics and espionage, these wars, this terror, might have never happened, surely would not have reached current levels. Many correctly state that the terror surrounding us is largely a result of the U.S. “War on Terror”.

We of the Munich American Peace Committee, a group of US American citizens living in and around Munich, working since 1983 for peace and disarmament, want to remind you of the consequences of one aspect of our government’s international military policies: the heinous use of drones, including attack planning through sur- veillance vehicles, the death they deliver, the panic, the horror, the destruction they cause to the victims, as well as the psychological damage to their enablers (especially the desktop “pilots”), The militarists' plans to spend billions of dollars expanding this program and increasing the lethality of this pernicious technology would drive an increasing number of even friends and allies to become militant “enemies”, if not fanatics, and exacerbate terrorism worldwide.

The many bases in the United States around the world, from where drones are launched, controlled and ser- viced, are mostly known, including those at Ramstein and Stuttgart not far from Munich. Secret sites, like other critical aspects of the program are hidden from the public.. Top secret, are for example the number of people, militants and civilians, killed and maimed, as well as the extent of the physical destruction the drones reap. Concealed are the true costs of the drone program, run jointly especially by the CIA and the Defense Depart- ment, both with large, secret budgets funding their pieces of the program. The essential matters of legality and morality have not been adequately addressed in any official open forum. The authority arrogated to the Execu- tive Branch (currently, President Trump and his Cabinet), namely to negate human rights and execute an indi- vidual or group without due process is illegal and a violation of international law. Such killing is murder, and re- mains morally reprehensible and unconscionable for the vast world majority opposed to taking a human life.

The USA and President Trump can stop its program to expand the use of all drones, immediately prevent their deployment, withdraw them from foreign countries and close the foreign bases. Of course, American forces must halt their activities, especially in most African nations, in eastern Europe, across the Middle East and in parts of Asia and the Pacific Basin. War is terror and not a method for preventing terrorism. Clearly, the 15 year official “War on Terror” is not working. Thus, Mr. Vice-President, please do all you can to end this fruitless, im- moral and deadly blunder. Yes, you and we can do it! What better place to start a policy of peace and cooper- ation than here at the Munich Security Conference!


Richard Forward, Munich American Peace Committee, Preysingstr.16, 81667 Munich

Some of supporting U.S. citizen organizations:

--Americans Against War (AAW), Paris, France, --U.S. Citizens for Peace and Justice- Rome (USC4P&J), Itraly, Anna Farkas --CODE PINK, Elsa Rassbach, Berlin, Germany

--Cynthia McKinney, Atlanta, Georgia