April 03, 2012
On March 24, 2012, about 1,000 people participated in a several mile "Stop Police Brutality" march in New York City, organized by Occupy Wall Street. It originated in Liberty Plaza (Zuccotti Park) and wound past City Hall, #1 Police Plaza, the city courthouse and other landmarks significant to OWS.
This march marked the first deployment of the Veterans Peace Team (VPT), following meetings between Tarak Kauff, VPT organizer, and OWS organizers.
March 15, 2012
Contact: Elliott Adams 518 441-2697
Tarak Kauff 845 706-0187
U.S VETS REFUSED ENTRY INTO SOUTH KOREA
Protest Friday at South Korean Consulate
WHERE: 335 East 45th Street, New York, NY
(between First and Second Avenues)
WHEN:Friday, March 16, 12:30 PM.
South Korean democracy crumbles to outside pressure and US Veterans are Denied Access to Return to Korea
March 15, 2012
Yesterday South Korea stopped US veterans, who had served to defend Korea, from entering the country. After 2 days of travel these US citizens and veterans of the US armed forces were left in no-man's-land between Korea and China. These veterans came back to Korea at the request of the people, to support the people of a small island (Jeju) off the South end of Korea. The people here have been struggling for months to protect their culture and their way of life. The people, men and woman, are using their bodies to block giant cranes bent on destruction. At risk are the sacred rocks of Gangjeong, the fresh water springs in the rocks, the coral reefs that support the island's marine fishery and endangered species. The area is linked to three UNESCO World Natural Heritage sites, nine UNESCO Geo-Park and that it is designated a Global Biosphere Reserve. But all this and the life on Jeju island in to be destroyed or put at risk for one more naval base.
As the Mayor of Gangjeong, and the Governor of Jeju, representing their people, plead with the S. Korean government to respect the citizens and stop this disaster, the US pressures the government to build the base. It should be noted that while there have been tensions with North Korea this naval base will be as far from North Korea as is possible in South Korea. It is not to defend South Korea. It is so the US, in subtle saber rattling, can threaten China's coastal waters with a nearby deep water naval base.
Instead of respecting the democratic wishes of the people and their elected representatives, the S. Korean government has shipped 1,700 riot police from the mainland into this little island to suppress the peaceable demonstrations and calls for democracy of the people. What is happening on Jeju is the forsaking of democracy, and the US should sanction Korea for it. What is happening on Jeju is a travesty of justice.
Two US veterans, both members of Veterans For Peace, were asked to come by the people. Elliott Adams and Tarak Kauff responded to the request by traveling for 2 days from New York to Shanghai to Jeju, including 19 hours in the air. But when they got off the plane they were rudely told by the Korean government (not the Jeju government) that they must leave. Tarak Kauff says, “ they were waiting for us, they had our photos as we arrived on the plane.” The veterans were left with little money, just tickets home that would not be good for a week. “This is gratitude. I served in Korea with the 2nd Infantry Division defending the people from North Korea, I come back to again defend the people and I am pushed off into no-man's-land,” said Elliott Adams
The Australian Veterans group Stand Fast says “We condemn the South Korean police treatment of protesters knowing that the real criminals are the war mongers and vandals that the police are protecting.”
March 08, 2012
Veterans especially are very aware of the tragic and dangerous situation now
It is urgent that more international people go to Jeju ASAP. This is a
Three of the four VFP members who will travel to Jeju are:
In a letter to the South Korean Embassy, S. Brian Willson, who has been to Korea 8 times, wrote,
"As a former US military officer who participated in our illegal war
"I am aware of the horrendous massacre in 1948 of at least 30,000 Jeju
Sending international peace workers to Jeju Island at this time signals that
Jeju Island is an early spark in the coming dangerous and expensive
Or you can send us a check in the mail at our post office box (see address
We are truly grateful for your support from Veterans For Peace and the
Bruce K. Gagnon Coordinator Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in SpacePO Box 652Brunswick, ME 04011
Bruce Gagnon (Maine): serves as Secretary/Coordinator of the GN. He has been working on space issues
December 22, 2011
Now with the recent police violence directed toward the
Veterans For Peace will establish Veterans Peace Teams to be
As veterans, we stand with the Occupy movement as members of
We also stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in
Excessive use of force by police toward those in the Occupy
This abuse of unarmed civilians exercising their
As veterans and as citizens, we implore individual officers,
We seek to prevent deaths and additional injuries in
Veterans For Peace
December 05, 2011
People of color, including Native Americans, African-Americans, Latinos, and working class communities in America have long been on the receiving end of police brutality.
Now with the recent police violence directed toward the Occupy movement, the country at large is waking up to the unpleasant reality that the violence of the system can and will target anyone who stands up for justice and opposes the exploitation of the 99 percent by the 1 percent.
The Veterans For Peace mission statement states that we pledge to work for peaceful conflict resolution and the elimination of war—the ultimate violence. As veterans of conscience, we are compelled to take a stand against police violence toward the national Occupy movement.
Veterans For Peace will establish Veterans Peace Teams to deploy to as many Occupy sites and actions as we can. We ask any and all military/law enforcement veterans to join us in this endeavor as nonviolent Veterans Peace Teams will attempt to act as mediators with the police, and as a buffer between Occupy protesters and police violence. Our goal is to protect constitutional rights and minimize conflict and injury to all involved.
Veterans For Peace stands with the Occupy movement as members of the 99 percent. We have taken an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Some of us have taken a similar oath as firefighters, government officials, and members of law enforcement. We therefore oppose any and all use of force by police against peaceful protesters exercising their right to peaceably assemble to seek redress of grievances as guaranteed by the First Amendment.
We also stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Tahrir Square and worldwide, standing up courageously, leading and often dying in the struggle for equality and justice as they are exposed to massive state-run police and military violence. We recognize that our common enemy is the wealthy power elite, those who control, ravage and exploit.
Excessive use of force by police toward those in the Occupy movement has led to arbitrary arrests, a fractured skull for one veteran and a ruptured spleen for another, near-asphyxiation and trampling of peaceful protesters and pepper-spraying of students sitting peacefully on a sidewalk obstructing nothing at all, among many abuses and injuries. Pepper spray, tear gas, bean bag projectiles, rubber bullets, tasers and other weapons—all of which can cause grave injury and death—have all been deployed against peaceful U.S. citizens.
This abuse of unarmed civilians exercising their constitutional First Amendment rights must cease.
As veterans and as citizens, we implore individual officers, police agencies, elected officials and government agencies to use restraint, negotiation and common sense when dealing with peaceful protesters. We will continue our efforts to convince law enforcement to avoid excessive force, brutality and injury to all involved. We also oppose the increased militarization of police agencies.
We invite law enforcement agencies to contact us to further communication and understanding. We seek to prevent deaths and additional injuries in domestic protests of governmental policies. We realize that those employed in law enforcement are part of the 99 percent, and we call upon all police personnel to honor and perform their duty to serve and protect the people—not to be a domestic front line force for the 1 percent.
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