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Veterans Occupy National Archives

photo from Tony Teolis

Live streaming video.

UPDATE FROM JIM GOODNOW: Homeland Security slashed the Defend Our Constitution banner with a knife.

UPDATE 4:30 p.m. Saturday from Tony Teolis: Security guards threatened to arrest everyone, but instead climbed the scaffolding, tore the banners down, and sent the activists on their way. It is getting to the point where you can do anything without getting arrested, and yet so few people do.

UPDATE 4 p.m. Saturday: Activists plan to remain through Monday morning at least, if not longer. They lost the really big "Arrest Bush and Cheney" banner to wind but have a smaller version and still have the "We Will Not Be Silent" Banner. The Archives security chief, Mr. Adams, spoke with Elliott Adams of Veterans for Peace and offered to not press charges if they left and threatened to have arrest warrants issued for them all in 2 or 3 weeks if they did not get down immediately. They chose to stay, and Elaine Brower of Military Families Speak Out got on the PA system to announce their intention to make sure that Bush and Cheney are arrested for murder. She told her son's story and began reading the names of the dead. Also, the similar action in Santa Monica is going well.


This was the second time that a group of veterans opposed to illegal wars and in favor of the rule of law had taken over the National Archives building in Washington, D.C. The first time, several weeks ago, a group of them had climbed onto a ledge on the front of the building with flags and banners. This time, they aimed higher.

Mike Ferner gave me a report over the phone at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday. He said that at 7:45 a.m. he and others had arrived at the Constitution Avenue side of the Archives. There had been no police presence on this side because the Pennsylvania Avenue side had been swarming with police focused on blocking traffic for G-20 delegates' endless limousine motorcades. That remained the case throughout the day, as world leaders burned oil and produced hot air.

Eight people, including six members of Veterans for Peace, one member of Iraq Veterans Against the War, and one member of Military Families Speak Out got around a construction fence, went up the Archives steps, and climbed 90 feet of scaffolding. From the top of the building they unfurled giant banners, the first at about 8:15 a.m. and the second around 8:45. The first read: "Defend Our Constitution, Arrest Bush and Cheney, War Criminals!" The second said: "We Will Not Be Silent."

The enormous banners stayed up until about 2:30 when it started to rain, hail, and blow. Many hundreds of people stopped by. One man, who said he'd seen the banners from blocks away, said he'd come over imagining the Archives had opened an exhibit on freedom of speech. The vets took a sound system up with them, and all day blasted music and speeches by Martin Luther King Jr. Down below, allies passed out flyers and talked to reporters, including representatives of NBC News, German television, Argentinean television, and KPFA.

As the banners were being unfurled Saturday morning, a few security guards came out and said that they might call the police and fire departments to come and get the activists down, but that they hated to deprive citizens of the city of needed services. Ferner found this ludicrous, given the thousands of cops working overtime to wait on G-20 delegates. Later the guards threatened to arrest everyone on the sidewalk. Nobody took these threats very seriously, and they turned out to be empty.

“Our goal is to have the Bush administration tried for war crimes no matter how long it takes. There is no statute of limitations on war crimes,” the veterans said in a press release.

The same messages were also displayed at demonstrations in Santa Monica and Long Beach, California on Saturday.

"The offenses of Bush, Cheney, and their accomplices are appalling," said Kim Carlyle, a VFP member and Army veteran. "Their misdeeds have killed or maimed more than a million people – American soldiers, innocent civilian children, women, and men. They have displaced almost five million people, with millions seeking refuge in other countries. Their total disregard for international agreements has severely tarnished the reputation of America in the world. Their unlawful wars have squandered billions of dollars that could have bolstered a troubled economy."

The veterans are demanding Bush administration be tried for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and crimes against peace; asking the media to clearly inform the public of the administration’s crimes; and encouraging citizens to take similar nonviolent actions.

According to Tarak Kauff, a VFP member, "People say Bush and Cheney will be gone soon so what’s the point? The point is, there is no statute of limitations on war crimes, and if not held accountable, criminality will continue regardless of who is in office. We either are or we are not a nation of law."

These individuals took part:

• Elliott Adams VFP: 61, Sharon Springs, NY, VFP President and former Army
paratrooper, Viet Nam
• Ellen Barfield VFP: 52, Baltimore, MD, former Army Sgt.
• Kim Carlyle VFP: 61, Buncombe County, NC, former Army Spec 5
• Doug Zachary VFP: 58, Austin, TX, VFP staff, former USMC Lance Cpl.
• Tarak Kauff VFP: 67, Woodstock, NY, former PFC, Army Airborne
• Will Covert VFP: 63, San Diego, CA, VFP lifetime member, former E4 Navy
• Elaine Brower MFSO: 54, Staten Island, NY, Military Families Speak Out, National Steering Committee, mother of USMC Sgt. James Brower on third tour in Iraq
• Matthis Chiroux IVAW: 24, Army Sergeant, served in Afghanistan, refused deployment to Iraq

And these people provided support on the ground:

• Mike Ferner VFP: 57, Toledo, OH, former Navy corpsman
• Debbie Tolson VFP: 52, Potomac, MD, associate member of VFP
• Michelle White MFSO: 24, Clarksville, TN, Military Families Speak Out, wife of Iraq war vet currently serving in Afghanistan
• Michael Marceau VFP: 59, Rockville, MD, VP VFP Chapter 16, former Army, Viet Nam
• Bruce Berry VFP: 62, Minneapolis, MN, former SPC 4 Army, Viet Nam
• Fred Nagel VFP: 65, Rhinebeck, NY, former SPC 4 Army
• Jay Wenk VFP: 82, Woodstock, NY, former rifleman, 90th Infantry Div., WWII
• Tony Teolis VFP:

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IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


I would love to be on that list but I am about one year away from social security. yes, Sargeant Earlywine will be there real soon! I am so jealous! Gotta keep working for about two more weeks ... getting close!


Maybe you'll find your buddies on these, EW. Check out the film crew that totally ignored the obvious free speech taking place, I wonder who they were with? Congrats, Short-timer, I know you are looking forward to retirement and climbing those scaffolds of speech! (figuratively of course, be careful out there) ;-D

IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


More "Vets Occupy National Archives" video (s)

IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


I am not on high speed quite yet. I just try to read between the lines. I still use DOS on a daily basis.

I am really close to retirement and full time blogs. I was a 11B40, Infantry, Forward Observer in 1968. I volunteered for Viet Nam and they sent me to Berlin Germany! Never had a day off and even stood guard on Rudolph Hess at Spandau Prison for several weeks. Now we are in this illegal war!

I am speechless.


Santa reeeeally needs to get you a PC upgrade. Have you been a good boy? ;-)

In the meantime, check this out at your local library, EW!

IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


Your computer has DOS also. I am able to do lots of stuff in the background ... quickly and easily to my own liking.



I know I liked XP ! How come you are text only, due to dial-up? Santa can bring his cable in from North Pole, I mean, if its on your list. ;-)

IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


We need you there to help lead us sheople out of darkness.

IMPEACH & JAIL bush & cheney ( AMMO ) at...


Peace, Love & Later, & - & - & - & - -

soon, ( Step Ahead U )( GLOBAL ) University - " Where All Earth Citizens R Teachers and Students" )

i would be there but unfortunately i'm sinking in a sea of debt and must swim for my life ... fortunately i have work as an Iron Worker and can only wish that the Iraq Debacle is completely historic ... however bad history it is before i have the means to attend this most important vigil.
I was glad to see so many WWII and Viet Nam Vets


Co-State Coordinator PDA Montana
National Impeachment Network, organizer
Peace and Justice Forums - Billings, MT co- producer
Montana Partners for Impeachment,coordinator
PDA IOT Fair Trade & Impeachment Teams
Veterans for Peace
Disabled Veteran DAV Viet Nam - drafted

Thank you so much for doing this action. It's 2AM and I just got home from work. To see this is so uplifting for those of us unable to participate. The American people have been beaten to a pulp. Those fortunate enough to have a job living in fear that they won't have one tomorrow. Those without jobs looking at dismal prospects for getting one. And the jobs available, no guaranteed hours, you can be fired or have your hours cut for no reason at all. We haven't left our children and grandchildren much of a country.

Nick Egnatz
NW Indiana Veterans For Peace
Viet Nam Vet

Eric Schwing

A salute to the anti war veterans and their resistance to Empire. Great Job.

I will do my best to get there to support you Wonderful courageous Patriots... Thank You All... It is far past time these Cowardly Criminal Killers were in Prison... they are truely the lowest of the low...

Know this when Doubts creep in ...


(I know most of you know this allready)


Thomas Milcarek
Patriotic World Citizen

Thank you to the true patriots for your continuing service, you are inspiring and so much more.

Chairman Conyers is implored to indict, prosecute, impeach, and charge George W. Bush with murder and war crimes LINK

IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


Cheers to all who participated and who would have! This the the true American Spirit!!! Long live Freedom and down with Corportate/MIC Facisism!!!

I love you guys......

how fitting! i grew up just outside DC and in addition to the usual school field trips we had our high adventure-hitchike into the city on saturday to visit all the monuments and memorials. the one that has stayed with me for over fifty years was: "the big armed guy" seated in front of the national archives, with "ETERNAL VIGILANCE IS THE PRICE OF LIBERTY" inscribed above him. i am too far away now, but i would love to be there and help. dick darne, alberton, mt.

Terrific effort by all involved; remarkable really to get those signs so high up on the building, even to have them made! Who's your seamstress?

Let's lobby for troop reductions in Iraq, leave enough to help build and support the Iraq army and stabalize the country, defeat al-qaeda and stop the bombings...too;

In Afghanistan and Pakistan we need more diplomacy to talk with the governments and the Taliban and the people there to negotiate to stop the fighting in Afghanistan and more direct mobilization
to defeat tthe Taliban and al-qaeda in Pakistan.

Many people are now pressing for more diplomacy including some of the Generals who figure the war(s) cannot be won by military action only. Support Obama if he presses for more diplomacy, the way foward in the long run to negotiate, reconcile, and make agreements and stop the fighting and bring the troops home..Arn Specter,Phila.

The last update appears to be from Sat. nite. Any news since?

Think David actually meant to put Sunday - not Saturday - on his last update. It was Sunday they cut the banners down. But, here are some more details:

Update: Homeland Security Climbs Scaffolding on National Archives

"Hey, read what it says."

Oooooh, look what I did! Look, Ma!

American people should not have to seek attention for justice, that is why the press used to be called our "watchdog".

IMPEACH BUSHCO & RICO PNAC/FARA AIPAC...PNAC is Bush/Cheney's "Helter Skelter" !


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