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Search words: winter soldier

VID (5.50) -"Iraq Veterans Against the War" Open Coffee House near Ft. Lewis

category international | anti-war / imperialism | other press author Monday July 28, 2008 07:43author by Independent Media Report this post to the editors

A group of Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW) are planning to start
up a GI coffeehouse near the entrance of the Fort Lewis military base
in Washington State. Though the project is still in its planning
stages, the idea is that it will be a center for supporting GI rights
and war resistance in the region, as well as a place for GIs to get
coffee right off the base.
Length - 5.50)

On a street littered with barber shops and abandoned dry cleaning
businesses in Tillicum, WA, the veterans have found several possible
locations for this project. Seth Manzel served in Iraq with a Stryker
Combat Team before joining his local chapter of IVAW, and is shown in
the video talking about these locations. Most of the places he and the
other vets have been checking out are abandoned dry cleaners, oddly
enough, because with fewer Army requirements for cleaning their attire
these places have virtually disappeared from the communities around
military bases.

A coffeehouse like this would be the first of its kind in the nation
since the 1970s. During the Vietnam-era dozens of coffeehouses popped
around the nation. In Texas one was called the Oleo Strut, which was
named after a part that made sure helicopters landed smoothly. In
October of 1968 coffeehouse known as the Shelter Half was established
Tacoma not far from Fort Lewis. It took its name from a makeshift
military tent structure. Aside from continual harassment from the
police force, however, the Shelter Half's shortfall was that its
location was still a twenty minute drive from the base. Still, it was
in its later years deemed "off-limits" by the U.S. Army. Jane Fonda,
the popular anti-war actress, was also banned from Fort Lewis around
this time. IVAW believes that one of the closer, newer locations will
be more effective.

When the Shelter Half opened its doors, the same month saw the first
issue of Counterpoint, a GI Resistance publication, followed by the
Lewis-McChord Free Press, B Troop News, and Fed Up! which were all
published off-base near Fort Lewis. This all happened within a short
period of time. The Seattle Chapter of IVAW last year started
publishing the GI Voice, a publication that makes its way onto Fort
Lewis, and has also begun a GI Radio project, available on

Though GIRadio currently broadcasts from Seth's garage, playing re-runs
of winter soldier—IVAW's testimonies of about Iraq and war crimes
recorded in Washington D.C.—the vets plan to move the show to the
coffeehouse once its setup.

A number of individuals and groups have already started donating
equipment to the coffeehouse, such as a cash register. IVAW says the
next step in organizing is to raise enough money to pay for the lease
they need to start operating and selling coffee. They are several
thousand dollars short at this point.

As far as a name goes for the coffeehouse, the vets are tossing around
"Ogive Plunger" which is the name for a part on a Mk19, a gun that can
be mounted to a Stryker vehicle. Seth told me he thinks that's a silly
name though. IVAW and volunteers will vote on a name as the project


Pepperspray Productions
PO Box 20626
Seattle, WA 98102

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author by Solidaritypublication date Mon Jul 28, 2008 21:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Solidairty with Robin Long Iraq War Resister - In Jail facing Court Martial - Write him a Letter!

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