“Soldiers’ Wounds: One Cost of War that Never Ends”

One of the recurring themes in the Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation’s TV series is that we are all interconnected. No matter what issue we address on one program or another, we find ourselves affirming our common humanity – across nations, across social and economic groups, and so forth.

Olympia FOR’s TV program for April 2011 took a fresh look at people who are in the military on active duty – and veterans who have served in the military.

While the peace movement opposes wars and our violent foreign policy, we recognize that the individuals who serve or have served in the military are human beings just like ourselves. They are literally our brothers and sisters. Also, some members of the peace movement – like our two guests – have served in the military.

The peace movement recognizes our common humanity with all people who are victims of war. Indeed, many people who serve in the military have also been victimized by war. Just as we want civilians to be healed and restored to peace, so also we want health and peace for all who have served in the military.

It is only fair that GIs and veterans be able to fully exercise their rights related to the benefits for which they are eligible.

This month’s TV guests are Dennis Mills and Mark Fleming. Both Dennis and Mark served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam era. Both are very active now in the peace movement. Both of our guests are very active with Veterans for Peace Chapter 109, the Rachel Corrie Chapter, in Olympia, Washington, and also very active also with the Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation.

Both Dennis and Mark volunteer significant time and effort helping active duty GIs and veterans know about their rights and claim their rightful benefits.  Both have qualified as “Independent VA Accredited Claims Agents.”

War costs everyone in many ways. The U.S.’s current wars are bankrupting our nation and turning world opinion against us. Wars are costing our nation our principles and our soul.

The Olympia FOR’s April TV program focuses specifically on how war hurts the people who fight – and their families. Despite people’s glib rhetoric that soldiers are “heroes,” the truth is that every combat soldier is wounded in several ways. Our nation must be mature enough to recognize these human costs – and responsible enough to cover the costs. Wars damage the people on all sides, and we must take responsibility to heal the people on all sides.

Our two guests – Dennis Mills and Mark Fleming – volunteer tremendous amounts of time, skill and effort to help active duty GIs and military veterans protect their rights and get the benefits that they deserve. You can get more information at:
• Olympia Veterans for Peace, Chapter 109: (360) 888-3704 or (360) 357-1060 www.vfp109rcc.org
• GI Rights Hotline: Toll-free 877-447-4487 www.girightshotline.org

To watch this interview, CLICK HERE.


About GlenAnderson 1515 Articles
Since the late 1960s Glen Anderson has devoted his life to working as a volunteer for peace, nonviolence, social justice, and progressive political issues. He has worked through many existing organizations and started several. Over the years he has worked especially for such wide-ranging goals as making peace with Vietnam, eliminating nuclear weapons, converting from a military economy to a peacetime economy, abolishing the death penalty, promoting nonviolence at all levels throughout society, and helping people organize and strategize for grassroots movements to solve many kinds of problems. He writes, speaks, and conducts training workshops on a wide variety of topics. Since 1987 he has produced and hosted a one-hour cable TV interview program on many kinds of issues. Since 2017 he has blogged at https://parallaxperspectives.org He lives in Lacey near Olympia WA. You can reach him at (360) 491-9093 glen@parallaxperspectives.org