The group of signers is comprised of 13 former senior government officials and military officers, who wrote a letter to to Secretary of State John Kerry in response to this weekend’s Camp Ashraf attack urging immediate action at both Camp Liberty and Camp Ashraf. The letter in its entirety is available below.
Copy of the open letter from the American Friends of the MEK to Secretary of State John Kerry:
Secretary of State
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520
This is a letter that none of us ever thought we’d have to write.
Each of us has answered the call of our country on more than a few occasions. It was no different last year when a confrontation between the Government of Iraq and the refugees at Camp Ashraf threatened to consume innocent lives as happened in 2009 and 2011 when a combined total of 47 residents were slaughtered. Secretary Clinton’s Special Representative, Ambassador Dan Fried, asked us to persuade the residents of Camp Ashraf to abandon their home of 27 years.
Yesterday, at least fifty-two of these people were murdered. Some had their hands tied behind their backs and were executed. All of them were defenseless, and shared these things in common: each of them was disarmed by the United States in exchange for “Protected Persons Status,” and each was living in Ashraf under the terms of an agreement that we negotiated at the urging and acceptance of the United States Government.
We strongly condemn this barbaric attack by the Iraqi government at the behest of the Iranian regime and express our deep disappointment at the failure of the UN and our own government to protect the residents of Ashraf and Liberty. We strongly urge USG do the immediate evacuation of all CA and CL residents, AND, that until they are all forthwith so evacuated, UN Blue Helmets be posted on both sites to protect Residents.
In considering our request, compare the current circumstances to statements made by the State Department and relied upon by us to achieve cooperation and accept reliance on the United States Government:
Secretary Clinton, December 25, 2011
“We welcome the agreement by the GOI and the UN to station monitors at this new location around the clock.” “Officials from the US Embassy Baghdad will visit regularly and frequently.”
Ambassador Fried, December 29, 2011
“The UN will conduct 24/7 monitoring at Camp Liberty.” “Embassy Baghdad will visit former Camp Liberty on a frequent basis to provide robust observation.”
Agreement between State and MEK of August 16, 2012
State “Commits to support safety and security of the Residents until the last of the Residents leaves Iraq.”
Letter to Madam Rajavi from Rendell, Ridge and Torricelli
“Department officials also stressed their commitment for the safety and security of all Residents throughout the process of their relocation.”
Let us be clear, the State Department used us to broker the solution of a crisis and then abandoned its promises and assurances which we gave in our country’s name. The attack on Ashraf is not an isolated incident. Rocket attacks on Camp Liberty and its 3100 Residents have resulted in 10 previous deaths, but there hasn’t been a State Department visit to Liberty since April. UNAMI has no permanent presence. The Residents who put their lives at risk are abandoned and alone. Not only has the United States not supported the “safety and security” of the Residents, the State Department has even failed to persuade the GOI to allow protective equipment so that they can protect themselves.
Dan Fried’s assurance that the Residents could remain at Ashraf until there was a property settlement might now be an ‘inconvenience’ to the State Department but it was a solemn commitment of your Department made by us at Mr. Fried’s urging. He specifically informed some of us on September 6, 2012 that “…100 residual Residents, without time limit, [will] remain as guardian of the property.” The same commitment was conveyed to the MEK and was made by the UN. Now over half of the people who staked their lives on the value of our word are dead.
All of us take commitments by the United States Government seriously. We are offended and outraged with the notion that solemn pledges, upon which lives depend, last no longer than the temporary solution of a political crisis. This is not the United States Government to which we have dedicated our lifetimes of service.
Several of us have sought to meet with you to present these concerns and to avoid committing these words to paper. You’ve chosen not to meet. We have corresponded with your staff and often have not had the courtesy of a reply. We of course realize the constant pressures on your schedule. However, this humanitarian crisis has been continuing for over two years.
Something must be done, and it must be done now.
Hon. Howard Dean – Former VT Governor, DNC Chairman, Presidential Candidate
Colonel (Ret.), U.S. Army Wesley M. Martin -US Military Commander for Camp Ashraf
Hon. Tom Ridge – Former PA Governor, Secretary Homeland Security
Hon. Louis J. Freeh – Former Director FBI
Hon. Michael B. Mukasey – Former US Attorney General
General (Ret.) Hugh Shelton- Former Chairman of US Joint Chiefs of Staff
Hon. Rudy Giuliani – Former NYC Mayor, Presidential Candidate
Brig. Gen. (Ret.) David D. Phillips – US Military Commander for Camp Ashraf
Hon. Robert Torricelli – Former NJ Senator
General (Ret.) James L. Jones – Former USMC Commandant, NATO Commander, National Security Advisor to the President
Hon. Mitchell B. Reiss (Ret.) – Former Ambassador, Former Special Envoy to the Northern Ireland Peace Process
Hon. Patrick Kennedy – Former Rhode Island Congressman
Hon. Edward Rendell – Former PA Governor, DNC Chairman