On Saturday, Nov. 15, at 8 AM, eight military veterans and a military mother climbed a 9-foot retaining fence outside the National Archives Building in Washington DC, and occupied a 90-foot high scaffolding to raise two 450-square foot banners reading, “DEFEND OUR CONSTITUTION. ARREST BUSH AND CHENEY: WAR CRIMINALS!” and “WE WILL NOT BE SILENT.” The same message was also displayed at demonstrations in the Los Angeles area that day.
Members of Veterans for Peace (VFP) chose the Archives for their nonviolent protest because it is symbolic of their military oath to “defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” In September they occupied the Archives for 24 hours, and plan to stay longer this time.
“The offenses of Bush, Cheney, and their accomplices are appalling,” said Kim Carlyle, a VFP member and Army veteran. “Their misdeeds have killed or maimed more than a million people—American soldiers, innocent civilian children, women, and men. They have displaced almost five million people, with millions seeking refuge in other countries. Their total disregard for international agreements has severely tarnished the reputation of America in the world. Their unlawful wars have squandered billions of dollars that could have bolstered a troubled economy.”
The veterans are demanding Bush administration be tried for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and crimes against peace; asking the media to clearly inform the public of the administration’s crimes; and encouraging citizens to take similar nonviolent actions. (Democratic Underground, Nov. 15)
See our last posts on the anti-war effort and military resistance.
I have always appreciated the sacrafice of our military people whether I agreed with the reason they went to war or not. But these veterans deserve more than praise and respect, they deserve to be heard.
It is not enough to follow orders from a superior, though they won’t tell you that. When your leaders have committed crimes against the constitution that YOU swore to defend then you are under no obligation to follow their orders.
These men take their orders from the constitution, they recognize its authority over any transient tyrrant, and leaving office or no President G.Bush and R. Cheney desearve to go to trial to answer for crimes against humanity.