Kurds pull out of Kirkuk after Turkey threatened to send in troops: We go to northern Iraq for a report; Congress considers bill to grant automatic citizenship to some immigrant soldiers fighting in Iraq: But there is a catch, the law would only apply to soldiers who die in combat; Saying no to war by saying no to the IRS: With the deadline for filing income tax four days away, thousands of Americans are refusing to pay federal war taxes
9:00-9:01 Billboard 9:01-9:06 Headlines 9:06-9:07 One Minute Music Break 9:07-9:15: In Northern Iraq Kurdish forces have said they will hand over control of the oil-rich city of Kirkuk to US forces. Kurdish troops advanced into the city against US orders yesterday. Then, Turkey threatened to send its troops across the border. The US invited military observers into Kirkuk, and the Kurds backed down. Washington is assuring Turkey the Kurds will not be allowed to control Kirkuk and its oil resources, or to declare an independent state in northern Iraq. Meanwhile, US special forces are involved in heavy fighting with Iraqi forces near Syrian border. * Ilene Prusher, Istanbul Bureau Chief/Mideast correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor 9:15-9:40: Immigration officials have decided to grant citizenship to seven US soldiers now that they have died in Iraq. The names of three soldiers have been released. They are: 19-year-old Diego Rincon was born in Columbia, 27-year-old Jose Gutierrez was born in Guatemala and 21-year-old Jose Angel Garibay was born in Mexico. Eight of the soldiers killed in the Iraq invasion thus far were immigrants. Some 37,000 men and women or about 3 percent of the total active duty force are non-citizens. Many immigrants enter the military in the hopes it will speed up citizenship applications. US Senators Zell Miller and Saxby Chambliss have announced they will introduce legislation to grant immediate citizenship to some immigrant soldiers who serve in the Gulf. But it will apply only to those who die in combat. In response, the head of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Cardinal Roger Mahony is urging President Bush to award immediate citizenship to all immigrant troops serving in the Persian Gulf. He said: There is something terribly wrong with our immigration policies if it takes death on the battle field to earn citizenship. We are joined now by Tod Tamberg, spokesman the Cardinal Roger Mahony, Sylvia Moreno of the Washington Post and George Rincon, father of 19 year-old Diego Rincon who was killed March 29 in Iraq. * George Rincon, father of the late Diego Rincon, soldier who was granted citizenship after being killed in Iraq. Link: http://www.diegorincon.com * Sylvia Moreno, reporter for the Washington Post. Wrote article For Immigrants, a Special Sacrifice *Tod Tamberg, Spokesman for Cardinal Roger Mahoney of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles * Dan Kane, spokesman for the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services 9:40-9:41 One Minute Music Break 9:41-9:58: According to the government's Unified Budget for 2003, a measly 17 percent of the federal budget is earmarked for the military, while over three times as much is spent on Social Security and Medicare. However when you look at the actual budget -- that which comes from taxes, minus Social Security funds -- we're spending nearly half of our budget, about $775 billion, on past and present military expenses. That is the introduction to a recent article War Tax Resistance Made Simple that appeared on the news website Alternet. As tax day approaches, thousands of Americans are expected to refuse to pay part or all of their federal taxes to avoid personally funding war. Tax resistance is nothing new. Henry David Thoreau may be the nation s best known tax resister. The author of Walden Pond spent a night in a Massachusetts jail for refusing to pay taxes to support the Mexican-American war of 1846. During the Vietnam War as many as 500,000 withheld part or all of their federal taxes. As the invasion of Iraq continues, a group of activists, academics and artists have co-signed a petition calling for a new generation of tax resistance. The petition reads in part war tax refusal under the present circumstances is fully justified on moral and ethical grounds. Signatories include: Joan Baez; Father Daniel Berrigan; Noam Chomsky; Daniel Ellsberg; Elizabeth McAllister; Grace Paley, Utah Phillips and Howard Zinn. Today we are joined in our Firehouse studio by long-time tax resirster Ruth Benn who is the author of War Tax Resistance. Father Julio Torres of St. Mark s Church in New York is also with us * Reverend Billy, of Rev. Billy s Peace Revival & Tax Revolt * Ruth Benn, author of War Tax Resistance and coordinator for the National War Tax Resistance coordinating committee. She has been a tax resister since 1980. * Father Julio Torres, urging his congregation at St. Mark s Church to consider tax resistance. 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Angie Karran, Ana Nogueira and Elizabeth Press. Mike Di Filippo is our music maestro and engineer.