Veterans for Peace (Chapter 72-Portland, Oregon)
“Courage to Resist is one of my major resources for keeping informed and for informing others…”
I am Viet Nam Veteran and Agent Orange Victim, served in the U.S. Marines 1968 to 1969, it took very little time to realize what a disaster and a crime the war in Viet Nam was.
My home coming was without incident, no protesters blaming soldiers, no spitting, and no cries of “baby killers” but there were protests, protests to end the war and I found only compassion and a genuine concern for our troops coming from the peace movement. I wasn’t engaged in the movement, I wanted to put the war behind me and get on with my life. Unfortunately, the weapons of mass destruction used in that criminal war was responsible for crippling my son Casey, born in December 1977 with a congenital heart disease, cleft palate and other abnormalities. Casey died in February 1981 at the age of 3 after being in a coma for 7 weeks from a failed surgery to repair his heart. For the first time in March of 2006 I returned to Viet Nam to attend an International Victims of Agent Orange Conference and visited centers where I met other Casey’s whose bodies were twisted, and lives denied from exposure to/or offspring of those who were exposed to Agent Orange some 30 to 35 years ago, many of the children were victim inheritors now into the 3rd generation.
My son’s death and the future of his little sister Harmony inspired in me a deep understanding of how precious are all our lives. I have dedicated my life to peace and have become a war resister and member of Veterans for Peace. To be a resister one should be aware of our history and the history of our victims and understand why Nations send their sons and daughters to kill or be killed. War whether Viet Nam, Central American, Grenada, Haiti, Somalia, or Afghanistan and the reasons for going to war are based on lies like the present war and occupation in Iraq. The history of the Viet Nam anti-war movement included and was led by veterans who refused continuing participation in the war.
Courage to Resist is a leader in support of Iraqi Veterans Against the War, conscientious objectors, and AWOL GIs. Courage to Resist organizes support and critical information for GI resisters undergoing court martials. Courage to Resist’s website is an important resource for the dissenters in the trenches and for all of us trying to keep current on the plight of our veterans and war resisters. It’s an organizing tool and international center for building networks of opposition to the war and promoting peace and diplomacy.
Courage to Resist is one of my major resources for keeping informed and for informing others, please use the website and support the organization both financially and through volunteer anti-war projects.