VVAW Letter of Support
By VVAW National Office
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In recent months, VVAW and its credibility have come under attack from the loony Right and the mainstream press. As with the Nixon administration, these new voices are attacking us on whether or not we are really vets and whether we spoke the truth about the war and our participation in it. Stand with VVAW now. Please sign on to this letter of support and get your friends to do so as well. For over 35 years, Vietnam Veterans Against the War has put itself on the line for veterans and active duty GIs. Now we are putting ourselves on the line for Vietnam Veterans Against the War. This letter will be run as an advertisement in various publications and appear in the next issue of The Veteran. The letter is printed below, along with the list of people who have already signed on. To show your support, please fill out the form below and mail it to the National Office.
Since its formation Vietnam Veterans Against the War has opposed unjust wars and supported the welfare of men and women on active duty. Whenever there has been a choice between the welfare of GIs and the interests of politicians, VVAW has always supported the welfare of fighting men and women.
The testimony of VVAW members in 1971 during the Winter Soldier Investigation first brought to public attention the conditions of service in Vietnam. Members of Vietnam Veterans Against the War worked tirelessly to establish the credentials and accuracy of each witness before the investigation. A confidential Nixon-administration team led by Charles Colson worked ruthlessly to undermine the testimony of each witness afterward. To this day none of the Winter Soldier Investigation evidence has been shown to have been false.
Vietnam Veterans Against the War has continued to focus attention on the many unmet needs of veterans. Members of VVAW developed the rap groups that served as the model for counseling at veterans' outreach centers. Vietnam Veterans Against the War was the first organization to draw attention to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), the shameful neglect of patients in VA hospitals, the harmful effect of exposure to Agent Orange, and the inadequacies of educational and employment benefits. VVAW fought for amnesty for war resisters, including vets with bad discharges. VVAW has supported Gulf War veterans in their struggles with Gulf War Syndrome and depleted uranium (DU) ammunition.
The current negative attacks against VVAW are an attack on the whole anti-war movement and must be countered.
Nancy Lessin and Charley Richardson (cofounders, Military Families Speak Out)
Fran Johns (Military Families Speak Out)
Ron Kovic (Vietnam veteran, "Born on the 4th of July")
W.D. Ehrhart, Ph.D. (poet, writer, teacher)
John Ketwig (Vietnam veteran, "And a Hard Rain Fell")
G. David Curry, Ph.D. ("Sunshine Patriots")
Annie Bailey (former regional coordinator, VVAW)
John Lindquist (former national coordinator, VVAW)
Ed Damato (former national coordinator, VVAW)
Dave "Buzz" Doyle (Gulf War I veteran)
Joe Bangert (WSI testifier, DCIII and more)
Orlando Tizon, Ph.D. (Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International (TASSC)*)
Sister Alice Zachmann (SSND, TASSC*),
Harold Nelson, Ph.D. (TASSC*, Korean Era veteran)
Yoomi Jeong (Korea Truth Commission*)
Jeff Stack (Mid-MO Fellowship of Reconciliation coordinator*)
Carl Davidson, (Chicagoans Against War & Injustice,* former national secretary of SDS)
Chukia Lawton (nurse, activist)
Richard Stacewicz, Ph.D. ("Winter Soldiers: Oral History of VVAW")
Jane Fonda (actor, activist)
*for identification only
Sign me on to the VVAW letter of Support
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PO Box 408594
Chicago, IL 60640