Adriel has been volunteering with the Mike Gravel 2020 campaign, and is posting up a few pieces to help organic rankings for the Senator’s ActBlue donation page. This is a guest post from Duncan Gammie. 

Mike Gravel has a strong record in many left-wing policy areas, but in particular in the area of foreign policy and anti-imperialism. Gravel made his name nationally as the Senator from Alaska who read the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional Record, and risked his membership in the Senate as a result. As Gravel runs for President in 2020, seeking to capture the nomination for the Democratic Party, as he solicits donations in order to make it on the debate stage (the current DNC rules stipulate that each candidate must raise donations from sixty-five thousand individual donors in order to be let in to the debates), it is important to take a look at the issues that he cares about most. Gravel is anti-war, and has spoken out against our involvement in Syria, Afghanistan, and Iraq; has criticized the use of drone warfare, which often leads to indiscriminate civilian deaths and the creation of more terrorism; and has pledged in his campaign to fight the war machine in whatever form it takes, Republican or Democrat.

“Peace” (photo by Eric Kelly, erickelly.us)

Given the recent surge of violence in Gaza, his anti-war views have a special place in the Democratic field of candidates, in that most other candidates are doing all they can to avoid answering these difficult and controversial questions about American involvement overseas. It is the position of Mike Gravel, however, that no left domestic policy can be sufficient unless it is explicitly tied to a left international policy. The idea that the Gravel campaign is trying to get across (and the reason why they ask you to donate, if only a dollar, to their campaign and get him represented in the debates to force these issues) is that while the leftward tilt in the party has been encouraging, especially the fact that grassroots donations have replaced much of the fundraising efforts (making citizens more involved in the political process, and also, since the average donation tends to be very low in terms of dollar amount, making them feel like even if they only donate a little, their voice still matters), it is also troubling that few if any voices within the party seem to be raising these issues about our conduct overseas. Given what we saw from Gravel in the 2008 debates, the last time he ran for President, to donate to his campaign today (since sixty-five thousand individual donations secures him a spot) would be a worthwhile step, since he intends to bring our focus to questions that have received far too little attention so far.