Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Solidarity Statement from Col. Ann Wright

To the Students Who Walked Out on March 27, 2008 to Protest the 5th Year of the War on Iraq

As a 29 year US Army veteran who retired as a Colonel and as a 16 year diplomat who helped reopen the US Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, and who resigned in March, 2003 in opposition to the Iraq war, I am extraordinarily proud of the 600 students and supporters who took time from the daily lives on March 27, 2008 to leave classes and work to protest the continuation of the war on Iraq. For the peaceful, non-violent protest of Bush administration violent and criminal acts of aggression on Iraq to be met with the arrests of three of the 300 who continued the walk is truly political intimidation.

I totally support your actions in protesting this war and urge you not to be intimidated by the actions of local police. Having been placed on the FBI's National Crime Information Data base for misdemeanor violations for protesting the war (generally payable by fines less than a parking ticket) and now having been banned from entering Canada for being on the FBI list which is supposed to be for foreign fugitives, parole violators, members of violent gangs and sex offenders, I consider the actions of local law enforcement in selective identification and prosecution of those who protest the war to be blatant political intimidation of our rights of free speech and free assembly.

I urge you to argue strongly in your court the rights of us as citizens to protest an unjust and criminal war.

I am so proud of you all!

I hope you can attend the 51st New Jersey Peace Action annual banquet on Sunday, April 27th to be held in North Pompton Plains, NJ.Peace!

Ann Wright
US Army Reserve Colonel and former US diplomat

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