News Release

Veterans Group Disinvited to Memorial Day Parade


AP is reporting: “Veterans For Peace was initially granted a spot in the May 26 [Memorial Day] parade that is scheduled to travel down Constitution Avenue, past landmarks that include the Washington Monument and the White House. But the American Veterans Center, a nonprofit that organizes the parade, has pulled that approval, saying it does not allow the expression of political viewpoints.”

Teolis is treasurer and Marceau is vice president of the Veterans For Peace Delwin Anderson Memorial chapter in the D.C. area. Marceau said today: “We received a letter that we were in the parade and then the invitation got pulled. We have some World War II veterans in our chapter and we’ve lost several in the last year, so we want to make sure that they especially can participate. Other groups that are very political but are pro-war, like the American Legion, are participating. Some of the sponsors of the parade are CACI, Booz Allen Hamilton, Raytheon, United Technologies, and a lot of their contracts are in support of the military.

“I’m a disabled Vietnam War veteran and I have visited Walter Reed Hospital numerous times and it saddened me to see young men and women having to face the realization of a future where they are missing limbs, eye sight, dealing with traumatic brain injury and PTSD. They are not getting the help that they need from the military hospitals or Veterans Administration hospitals.”

National executive director of Veterans For Peace, McPhearson said today: “We’ve had this happen to other chapters because we are against the war and the occupation in Iraq. Our members have children who are in Iraq. We’re not being excluded because we’re political as the parade organizers are claiming. We’re being excluded because we’re supporting the troops and not the war and occupation. Other groups with political views — including political parties — are allowed to participate. This is supposed to be about publicly honoring the loss and sacrifice of our fallen brothers and sisters, and we are veterans who are being prevented from doing that — by other vets.”

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167