Staten Island, NY – September 29, 2007. On Saturday, September 29th, Peace Action of Staten Island hosted a fundraiser for Iraq Veterans Against the War at the Unitarian Church, 185 Fillmore Street. It was a very exciting and productive fundraiser with a presentation by Fernando Braga. Fernando was one of the very first National Guardsmen to not only join, but helped create a group that rejected the illegal war of aggression he was against. He was in Iraq from March, 2003 to January, 2004, and quickly learned of the lies and deception that led us into that war and occupation.
He returned to start organizing against it and now IVAW has 22 chapters Nationwide with over 600 members, and growing! His speech was inspirational and his dedication to the cause of organizing military resistance is phenomenal. Along with the pleasure of hearing Fernando speak, we were able to show the video of the â€œVeterans for Peace 2006 Conventionâ€ where other war resisters, such as Sgt. Ricky Clausing, who was AWOL for a year to return and face court martial, told their stories. These are the true heroes of our time.
Peace Action of Staten Island members turned out and were in full support of IVAW. This was the first fundraiser given Nationwide since the call from IVAW for the financial support of the peace movement. The group raised $360 that evening, with the possibility of other donations being mailed in or given online. The commitment of peace activists to solidly stand behind war resisters was proven that evening in a very small borough of New York City.