Camilo Mejia, Iraq Veterans Against the War
Once again we are reminded of the permanent, criminal, and atrocious assault on freedom and democracy that we’re living under, an assault perpetrated as much by our privatized puppet government, as by the corporations that pull its strings. But the harassment of activist students Brian Kelly and Lauren Giaccone by the thuggish Secret Service and the servile college administration, should serve not only as reminder of the deplorable state of affairs in the United States, but also as reminder of the continued need for young activists within the students’ movement to speak truth to power. In a society where conformity and silent acceptance are the norm, and where government corruption easily floats about unchallenged, there needs to be people like Brian and Lauren, whose voices sound loud across the land of the quietly oppressed, and whose persecution reminds us of the need to speak out loud. Shame on war criminal Bill Clinton! Shame on the Secret Service! Shame on the cowardly Dean of Students at Pace University! Shame on those who agree with us but remain quiet! And thank you, Brian Kelly and Lauren Giaccone, for doing your civic and moral duty. Thank you for sounding off.
Staff Sgt. Camilo Mejia is a GI resister, conscientious objector and Iraq War veteran. A Staff Sgt. with the Florida National Guard, he became the first soldier to go public with his refusal to redeploy. He spent seven months in military confinement for his decision, and was released in mid-February, 2005. He has been an outspoken advocate for ending the occupation of Iraq.