Seeing your “Vancouver World War II veteran honored for service” (The Columbian, March 13) and “U.K.: Russian advance in Bakhmut could come with heavy losses” (Associated Press, March 11) articles remind me of the importance of supporting peace.
World War II saw over 50 million people perish, and today there are more active armed conflicts globally than at any point since then, which is why Congress must do more to reduce violence abroad by investing in peacebuilding — a critical tool for responding to and recovering from these crises.
According to the Institute for Economics and Peace, every dollar invested in peacebuilding “carries a potential $16 reduction in the cost of armed conflict.” Prioritizing peacebuilding not only prevents human suffering and saves lives; it also saves U.S. taxpayer dollars, and over the past year many of us have felt the impact of our current economy.
I urge Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez to please publicly support funding for three peacebuilding programs in the fiscal year 2024 appropriations — the Complex Crises Fund, Atrocities Prevention and Reconciliation programs — to prevent and reduce violent conflict, because “Human suffering anywhere concerns men and women everywhere” (Elie Wiesel).