Tag Archives: VFP

Report Back: National Veterans for Peace Conference in Miami

Members of Gainesville Veterans for Peace pose with Col. Ann Wright at the National Vets for Peace Conference in Miami in August. Photo courtesy of Gainesville Veterans for Peace.

By Brian Moore, Gainesville Veterans for Peace Member

Veterans for Peace (VFP) held its 27th national convention this year in Miami. The focus was on U.S. military involvement in Latin America with the theme “Liberating the Americas: Lessons from Latin America and the Caribbean.” Speakers included author Alice Walker, Father Roy Bourgeois and TV host Phil Donahue.

Also speaking at the workshops were familiar names like Col. Ann Wright, David Swanson, Medea Benjamin, Iraq War resisters Camilo Mejia and Victor Agosto, Carlos and Melida Arredondo, Marlene Bastien and DeAnne Graham. They participated in presentations on Haiti, Honduras, Guatemala, a panel on G.I. resistance, a Hiroshima/Nagasaki commemoration and much more. You can see video of the workshops at vfpnationalconvention.org.

We met with many other members to discuss current issues including drone warfare, depleted uranium, Agent Orange, the military industrial complex, the war on drugs and U.S. foreign policy in South America.

Many of the members present in Miami worked together in the ‘80s. In Central America, VFP visited Nicaragua, Guatemala and Honduras. VFP was invited back to help monitor the elections of 1990. While older members of the organization were excited to reunite and have some laughs, newer members and guests were eager to meet some of these legendary characters who have devoted their lives to working for peace over the past decades.

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25th Annual Winter Solstice Concert, Dec. 17

Gainesville Veterans for Peace will be hosting its 25th Annual Winter Solstice Concert on Saturday, Dec. 17. For a quarter century now, the anti-war group has been bringing together peace musicians, artists, organizations and advocates at a concert celebrating the Winter Solstice.

This year’s line-up includes Drums of Peace, John Chambers, Lauren Robinson, David Beede, Kevin O’Sullivan, Scrub Hill Billies, Talking Stick, Quartermoon, the Heavenly Semi-Angels and others.

The Winter Solstice Concert will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship (4225 NW 34th St.). Doors open at 7p.m., and the concert begins at 8p.m. Tickets are $10 to $30 on a sliding scale.

Advanced tickets can be purchased at Hyde & Zeke Records (402 NW 10th Ave.) or by calling (352) 375-2563. People who purchase tickets in advance must arrive by 7:30p.m. to assure a seat. Unclaimed seats will be opened up for those in line after 7:30p.m., with no preference given to advance ticket purchasers, until all 400 seats are filled.

Outside the event, organizations and groups from the Gainesville area will set up informational booths and tables. Attendees are encouraged to bring clothing, food and personal items to be collected and distributed by Helping Hands Clinic. Refreshments will also be available.

Parking is available at the event but is limited (carpooling recommended!), and parking attendants will be present to assist drivers.

For more information about the Winter Solstice Celebration, visit the Vets for Peace Website.