March 13-16: Iraq Veterans to Share the Truth with the American People

Iraq Veterans Against the War to convene Winter Soldier on war’s fifth anniversary

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 11 February 2008

Philadelphia, PA As the fifth anniversary of the U.S. occupation of Iraq nears, Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) is preparing to launch an event that will change the way the American public thinks about this war. Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan will feature testimony from U.S. veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, who will tell the hard truth about what is really happening, day in and day out, in Iraq and Afghanistan.

From March 13-16 in Washington, D.C., veterans from across the country will be standing up to share their experiences. While many Americans feel that the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan is improving, these veterans will reveal the unpleasant realities of the ongoing U.S. military occupation that many don’t know about.

“It’s our responsibility to tell the truth, and it’s the duty of the American people to listen,” said Kelly Dougherty, executive director of IVAW and a former sergeant in the Colorado Army National Guard, who served in Iraq as a military police officer. “It’s not going to be easy to hear what we have to say. It’s not going to be easy for us to tell it. But we believe that the only way this war is going to end is if the American people truly understand what we have done in their name.”

The event has been named Winter Soldier to honor a similar gathering 30 years ago of veterans of the Vietnam War. Winter soldiers, according to founding father Thomas Paine, are the people who stand up for the soul of their country, even in its darkest hours.

Thousands of concerned citizens have already pledged their support for Winter Soldier by signing the statement, We Support the Troops Who Oppose the War. The full statement can be read at [LINK]. For those who won’t be able to travel to Washington, live video and audio feeds of the entire Winter Soldier weekend will be available ­ groups across the country are already planning to gather and watch the event.

Iraq Veterans Against the War was founded in 2004 to give those who have served in the military since September 11, 2001 a way to come together and speak out against an unjust, illegal and unwinnable war. Today, IVAW has over 700 members in 49 states, Washington, D.C. and Canada and on military bases overseas.

For more information: [LINK]