Winter Soldier

Thomas Paine

These are the times that try men’s souls: The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value.

-Published on 23 December 1776

Hundreds of veterans and active-duty soldiers of the Iraq and Afghanistan

wars are gathered in Washington DC, from yesterday 3-13-08, to sunday 3-16-08,  for the Winter Soldier hearings. The soldiers plan

to give eyewitness accounts of the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Organized by Iraq Veterans Against the War, the gathering is modeled after

the 1971 Winter Solider hearings organized by the Vietnam Veterans Against

the War

The soldiers plan to give eyewitness accounts of the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

That is what ‘Winter Soldier’ is all about, Eyewitness Account to War, especially Wars of Choice!

It’s about testimony of the policies of conflict, and war, under orders from the civilian and military leadership, as perceived by the individual recipients of those orders, the Military Personal!

For those not paying attention, and according to a recent survey 72% of you aren’t really concerned with the Conflicts in Iraq and Afganistan in your busy lives, you can visit War comes Home and listen to the individual testimonies of those you sent into the Invasions and Occupations, especially Iraq, and Start Paying Attention!

They are posting up the testimonies right after they happen. So when you visit the link you’ll see the most recent, or next, at the top. Click on the page numbers, at the bottom, to follow each individual testimony, from the opening statements back to today.  The ones that have been loaded onto the site you’ll find a player under each, you can click on these to listen to that individuals testimony.

Some of those who testitfied yesterday, 3-13-08, and are testifying today, 3-14-08:

Iraq Veterans Against the War’s Kelly Dougherty’s Opening Statement at Winter Soldier 2008

The Executive Director of Iraq Veterans Against the War, Kelly Dougherty, gives the opening remarks at Winter Soldier 2008. She speaks about how Iraq Veterans Against the War has grown from a small organization in 2004 to a larger force with more than 800 members — 200 of whom are in attendance this weekend in Washington, DC.

Barry Romo of VVAW’s Opening Remarks at Winter Soldier 2008

Barry Romo of Vietnam Veterans Against the War’s emotional opening remarks on the 1971 Winter Soldier gathering Detroit Michigan and what it means of this weekend’s gathering.

Hart Viges

Testimony from the March 14, 2008 Rules of Engagement, Part One Panel. Hart Viges joined the Army after September 11th 2001 and was shipped out to Iraq from Febuary 2003 until January 2004. He says that while he was stationed in Iraq he “saw the beauty of the land and the people.” When he returned to the US, he filed for Concientious Objector and recieved my Honorable Discharge. Now he works with the GI RIGHTS HOTLINE and goes into High Schools to talk to kids on a weekly basis. He lives in Austin, Texas.

Jesse Hamilton

Testimony from the March 14, 2008 Rules of Engagement, Part One Panel. Former US Army Staff Sergeant Jesse Hamilton has received the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal. His grandfather was a sergeant in World War I, his great-great-grandfather served in the Civil War and his great-great-great grandfather served in the war of 1812. He lives in New Jersey.

Adam Kokesh: Testimonial and Bio

Testimony from the March 14, 2008 Rules of Engagement, Part One Panel. Former Marine Corps Sergeant Adam Kokesh served in a Civil Affairs Group in Iraq’s Western Anbar Province from February to September 2004. Since his return from Iraq, Kokesh has become a leading activist with Iraq Veterans Against the War. He was arrested for disrupting General Patreaus’ testimony before Congress last September.

Jason Hurd: Testimonial and Bio

Testimony from the March 14, 2008 Rules of Engagement, Part One Panel.

Eric Estenzo: Testimonial and Bio

From the March 14, 2008 “Crisis in Veteran’s Healthcare” panel. Eric Estenzo is a Marine Corps Reservist who served in the initial invasion of Iraq. He hurt his back in Iraq and when he returned home in the US he ended up in line for food at a shelter for homeless veterans. He’s also an artist.

Adrienne Kinne: Testimonial and Bio

From the March 14, 2008 “Crisis in Veteran’s Healthcare” panel. Adrienne Kinne served in the US Army and Army Reserves from 1994 through 2004 as an Arabic linguist in military intelligence. She was activated in the Reserves for two years following the events of 9/11 and served stateside in direct support of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan as a voice interceptor. She now works in the Department of Veterans Affairs as a health science specialist (psychology) and as the New England Regional Coordinator for Iraq Veterans Against the War. She lives in Vermont.

Kevin Lucey: Testimonial and Bio

From the March 14, 2008 “Crisis in Veteran’s Healthcare” panel. Joyce and Kevin Lucey are the parents of Corporal Jeffrey Lucey, who

killed himself on June 22nd, 2003 after returning from a tour in Iraq.

Joyce and Kevin Lucey are currently suing the Department of Veterans

affairs arguing the VA was negligent in caring for their son. A VA

Inspector General’s Report notes VA officials turned Jeffrey Lucey a

few days before he took his own life.

Euegene Martin: Testimonial and Bio

From the March 14, 2008 “Crisis in Veteran’s Healthcare” panel. Euegene Martin is a labor organizer with the American Federation of Government Employees.

Kelly Dougherty: Testimonial and Bio

Kelly Doughrety is Executive Director of Iraq Veterans Against the War. An eight-year veteran of the Colorado Nat. Guard, she served as both a medic and in the military police. She was deployed both to the Balkans and to Iraq.

Winter Soldier – Testimony About Military Contractors

The testimony today has been so riviting that I just pulled away to write to you. There are people listening from London, Japan, germany, Italy, France, Costa Rica, and Canada as well as all over the US. We’ve received emails from all over the country. If your local Pacifica affliliate isn’t carrying the coverage, you can stream the broadcast all weekend at or I’ve received many emails that the mainstream press has ignored this. If you come across an interesting news article or tv report, post it here.

By the way, we’re posting audio from those testifying and some background about the people. You can listen to this later – it’s archived and available as soon as we can post it.

Captain Luis Montalvan: Testimonial and Bio

Former US Army Captain Luis Montalvan served two tours in Iraq. Before joining the officer corps in 2003, Montalván spent over a decade as a communications specialist, military policeman and infantryman in the enlisted ranks, having joined the U.S. Army on his 17th birthday in 1990. He personally witnessed the September 11th attacks in New York. He currently lives in Brooklyn.

Antonia Juhasz: Testimonial and Bio

Antonia Juhasz is a Tarbell Fellow, Oil Change International and a

Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies. She is author of

The Bush Agenda: Invading the World, One Economy at a Time

Jeremy Scahill: Testimonial and Bio

Jeremy Scahill is an American investigative journalist. He serves as a correspondent for the U.S. radio and TV program Democracy Now! He is a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow at The Nation Institute, and a frequent contributor to The Nation magazine.

Vincent Emanuele: Testimonial and Bio

Vincent Emanuele served in the Marine Corps in Iraq in the Spring of 2003 and again in the winter of 2004-2005. He turned against the war because of the poor condition of the military equipment used by American soldiers in the war-zone.

Rules of Engagement, when an occupying military starts making up their own it creates the tragic deaths and maimings of the innocent, in an Insurgent/Guerilla War the Support of the Populace is the only reason it can continue, the more tragic events to the innocent the more Support to their fellow citizens trying to rid their country of the invaders and occupiers!

Visit War Comes Home to listen to these testimonies, and find much more.

After the first Winter Soldier Testimony of 1971 those who gave testimony were condemned as were those who organized it and especially the spokesperson for VVAW and the ‘Winter Soldiers’, and still are today.

Those who were actually Veterans and Veterans of Vietnam knew full well what happened during that Conflict. The DoD and Administration, of that time, choose not to investigate fully the testimonies, nor did anyone who were with those soldiers come forward to dispute their testimonies. Yet there are some who would rather Re-Write the History than Admit that Vietnam was an Atrocity of major proportions and an ugly destructive stain on our History, that still exists in this Nation.

The Country, as one, stated we would learn the lessons of and not Repeat, We Are Now Repeating and this ‘War On Terrorism’, going through Afganistan and especially Iraq, are going to be much worse than Vietnam, for the Hatreds we made will Haught this Nation for Decades!

As Was Just Spoken, “The Problem Is The Occupation!!!”

Wars of Choice are an Atrocity


    • jimstaro on March 14, 2008 at 11:41 pm

    Are some Very Moving testimony as well as Visions you may not want to know But Must!!

    I had 31/2 months left in ‘Nam and the end of my 4yr hitch in the Navy, all shore duty, when the First ‘Winter Soldier’ took place.

    It’s the Reality of War, Wars Of Choice!

    • jimstaro on March 15, 2008 at 12:01 am

    On August 25, 2004, Carlos Arredondo’s son, Alexander, would die there.

    And so from the spectre of the summer soldier who shrinks from the hard truths and his country’s crises, comes the Winter Soldier who will not look away.

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