VVAW quickly took up the struggle for the rights and needs of veterans. In 1970, we started the first rap groups to deal with traumatic after effects of war, setting the example for readjustment counselling at Vet Centers now. We exposed the shameful neglect of many disabled vets in VA hospitals and helped draft legislation to improve educational benefits and create job programs. VVAW also fought for amnesty for war resisters, including vets with bad discharges. We helped make known the negative health effects of exposure to chemical defoliants, and we worked with Maude DeVictor to help her publicize the VA's attempts to cover up this information. We continue to fight for treatment and compensation for all Agent Orange victims.
Today, the U.S. still finances and arms undemocratic and repressive regimes around the world. Meanwhile many veterans are still denied justice---facing unemployment, discrimination, homelessness, post-traumatic stress disorder, and other health problems, while already inadequate services are being cut back or eliminated.
We believe that service to our country and communities did not end when we were discharged. We remain committed to the struggle for peace *and* for social and economic justice for all people. We will continue to oppose senseless military adventures and to teach the real lessons of the Vietnam war.
We will do all we can to prevent another generation from being put through a similar tragedy, and we will continue to demand dignity and respect for veterans of all eras. This is *real* patriotism, and we remain true to that mission!
VVAW Homepage - http://www.prairienet.org/vvaw/