Busting through the Bottom Line

| International, IRS, Militarism, Redirection

Under the bright, clear, azure blue skies of Spring, our thoughts turn toward action. There are a number of ways to take action in the upcoming tax season culminating on April 15, 2024 and beyond. NWTRCC has put together a page- Quick Tips for Tax Day that has some resources to activate actions in coming weeks. There is a little something for everyone. We have sample letters to the IRS, the updated Peace Tax Returna form for redirection and let us know what you have planned

War tax resisters created this banner for tax marches in 2017.

An article in New York Times this week reminds us of how our “defense” dollars are connected.  It was 21 years ago this week that Rachel Corrie was killed by a Caterpillar D-9 bulldozer while trying to defend a Palestinian home in Rafah.  The bulldozer was made specifically for the Israeli military to destroy homes. This week Caterpillar was in the news for not paying taxes. The article reported on the investigation of the IRS into Caterpillar for not reporting over $3 Billion in profits by moving accounts overseas. The article alludes to political appointments as the reason that Caterpillar was not fined or held to account for their failure to pay taxes corporations but corporations have long avoided paying taxes as well as presidents.  

On the anniversary of her death, people traveled to Caterpillar headquarters including Rachel’s parents to try to hold the company responsible for the harm their product had inflihcted. Her father explained that as a business man he wanted to hold the company to their code of ethics. The demand then and the demand now is that these companies must be held accountable for the destruction and loss of life these products cause. 

Looking back in time, A year ago NWTRCC published The Bottom Line about the many unique aspects of US taxpayer money and the Israeli military. The article cites that through 2020, the US has given $236 Billion in aid to Israel and continues

“Many aspects distinguish the United State’s support of Israel. One is the fact that Israel receives a lump sum of allocated MOU money in the first month of the budgetary year in which it can be deposited in an interest bearing account with the  Federal Reserve which increases the money available to the Israeli military. This allows for more money to be invested in the Israeli military than is currently acknowledged and able to be tracked.”

Much of the background was from a video from the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) a Quaker organization. You can watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxOLXaKgIxA

Another note in history was the formation of the War Resisters’ International on March 16, 1921. They wrote a statement that began and ended with these words: “War is a crime against humanity…WE, THEREFORE, actuated by an intense love for mankind…We hold, however, that consistent pacifists have no right to take up a merely negative positions, but must recognise AND STRIVE FOR THE REMOVAL OF ALL CAUSES OF WAR.

Weeds grow through cracksPhoto

Photo by Ed Hedemann, 2017.

We are educating ourselves and each other. 

We must keep trying to use all of the tools at our disposal with love and learning as keys. Share the wealth of NWTRCC resources with those interested in refusing to pay for war. We have videos and lots of other materials. 

On the topic of education and videos, I’d recommend Exterminate All the Brutes. The miniseries was directed by Raoul Peck who was the former Minister of Culture of Haiti.  It provides an overview of European colonization and would be worth a  watch over the weekend or Spring Break.

Post by Chrissy Kirchhoefer