Monday, May 21, 2007

Legal Defense Fund for Adam Kokesh

May 22, 2007

Dear Friend of Iraq Veterans Against the War,

My name is Adam Kokesh and I need your help. Because of my involvement in IVAW, I have been singled out and called for a military hearing to be made an example of for those of us who have spoken out against the war. I have been an active member of IVAW for a mere four months, but have already garnered enough attention to be perceived as a threat by those using our military to maintain political support for the occupation of Iraq.

Because my second activation as a reservist extended past my six-year obligation, I am only in the Inactive Ready Reserve from my honorable discharge from active duty last November to June 18th. After my discharge, I moved to Washington, DC to get a Master’s in Political Management at GWU, and joined IVAW. I have since appeared on behalf of IVAW speaking at concerts, universities, and high schools. I have written about my views on the occupation and my military experience for the IVAW website and on my blog.

Most notably, I participated in Operation First Casualty on March 19th. This was a mock combat patrol through Washington, DC in order to bring home the truth of the occupation of Iraq, because the first casualty of war is the truth. I appeared in my uniform, without my name, without rank, and without the patch that says US MARINES. I received an email of warning about possible violations of the UCMJ for appearing in uniform at a political event. Instead of ignoring it like everyone I know who has received similar emails, I wrote a strongly worded reply admonishing the Major who was “investigating” me for wasting time on such trivial matters. The text of that email is posted here.

I soon received a package from the Marine Corps informing me of a separation hearing to re-separate me with an Other Than Honorable Discharge. A scan of the complete package can be seen below. I have sought private counsel for this hearing, as is my right. I intend to bring as many witnesses as possible to testify to both the character of my service and the nature of my involvement with IVAW. The Marine Corps only made it known to us today that the hearing will be held on June 4, in a mere 13 days. They have also decided to activate me for the hearing and hold it in Kansas City, home of the Marine Corps Mobilization Command.

This case is important because the intimidation of servicemen who speak out will suppress the truth about Iraq. With the help of IVAW, I intend to fight this to the end and stand up for the rights of all members of our armed forces. Please support this effort by mailing a check made out to IVAW with “Adam Kokesh Legal Defense Fund” in the memo to PO Box 8296, Philadelphia, PA 19101 or by going here, clicking on “Donate Now” and including “Adam Kokesh Legal Defense Fund” in the Special Project Support window. Please feel free to email me with any questions or comments.

Sincerely,

Adam Kokesh

adam@ivaw.org


















46 comments:

Anonymous said...

Outstanding work! I've sent out requests for support for your leagal defence fund to Dailykos, and to lawyers across the country. To see if this is a malicious prosecution. Good luck. Gordon Sodebrerg

Anonymous said...

You deserve everything you get. Didn't you realize that what you were doing violated regulations?

Anonymous said...

You deserve everything you get.Didn't you realize what you were doing was against regulations? Posting on DU isn't going to help your cause.

Sarah White said...

Adam!!! I'm glad your doing this.. I'm proud of you. This is Sarah White from NAPS!!! So anyhow I hope everything works out for the best. Take care. Sw

Laurie said...

Anonymous 11:12,

How many days did you serve in this (or any) war, and how long have you been on the Bush payroll?

crom-a-boo said...

It is sad when veterans brave enough step up to the challenge of fighting for freedoms others take for granted, complete their obligation, and STILL are unable to participate in free speech. A member of the IRR with a bar to reenlist should be able to say what he feels; he has earned that right.

Signed,

A Veteran in Augusta, GA

Neocon said...

do your time in leavenworth and quit being such a pussy. hopefully they will put you in a cell with a nigger faggot.

Bill Harasym said...

Adam,
As a veteran who is disabled, It amazes me, that a country that says you were fighting over there to protect our freedoms here, (Yes, a major talking point of the right and the ignorant.) would not afford you the same rights that you were supposedly protecting here. Hypocrites All! I am familiar with the military's UCMJ, as I was a dog Handler, and saw both sides of that coin. I would love to donate money for your defense fund, but living on disability severely limits my discretionary income. But I will spread the word to all my friends and family. You are doing the right thing, and although I might have used the same language, your lawyer might advise you to tone it down. Take care, and best wishes always! And one former servicemember to another, never retreat!

CEDRIC WARD said...

Wow...the two posters above, Neocon and anonymous, certainly represent the kind of assholes that support the war crimes of George W. Bush and his co-conspirators.

You two make me want to puke.

I bet you two pussies have never done a damn thing for this country, except suck off its tits.

Your lives probably already show the results of your irrational mental non-abilties.

I hope you both rot in one of Bush's concentration camps.

Having the balls to sign my name,
I remain,

Cedric Ward
Athol, Idaho

Anonymous said...

"Neocon said...

do your time in leavenworth and quit being such a pussy. hopefully they will put you in a cell with a nigger faggot.

May 30, 2007 12:18 PM"


You have my support, Adam. Apparently the brass has nothing better to do than to punish those who don't share their moronic opinions.

As far as YOU, neocon, Aside from being a homophobic racist, I'm more than certain you never had the GUTS to serve one second in the military so crawl back into that hole you came out of you gutless COWARD!

Got Democracy? said...

Thank you for the powerful street theater. One would think the military would have more important items to attend to than this bullshit. How many soldiers died this week? May was, so far the deadliest month. Ok to die in uniform, but telling the truth in uniform is forbidden? What a waste of time & money-- are there not enough severely injured soldiers who need medical funding? I guess the military would prefer you get your camo garb at Wal Mart instead, to help support a 3rd world sweat shop. Clearly the military can't handle the truth?

Anonymous said...

First, didn't you get demoted while you were active duty because you illegally brought back a pistol from Iraq? You should reflect your page to show your indiscretions Corporal. There are still thousands of honorable citizens fulfilling the obligation that came with signing on the dotted line, and you're pissing on their morale. Looks like you got what you wanted, money for college but not the other stuff that goes along with being a Marine, just like that Lt. Watada. Being in the military is only convenient when you get what you want huh? It's all about the fine print, looks like they got you, now take it like a Marine!!!

crom-a-boo said...

Isn't it sad when people use their right to free speech in such an ignorant manner as "Neocon"? Veterans serve to protect the rights of such ungrateful, uneducated, defects of society. You have a right to your opinion; too bad it does not come from a source of social justice. Perhaps your tag is "Neocon" because you are a Neo-Nazi convict with a similar experience for which you wish for SGT Kokesh?

Anonymous said...

I wear my uniform while hunting. Will I be recommended for a NDRB and BCNR? This whole case is just silly. The major's God complex was affronted and he couldn't handle it. Simple.

honestly said...

Crom-a-boo, first, he DIDN'T 'complete his obligation.'

He was still in the IRR when he violated USMC and DOD regulations.

And it wasn't for protesting per se, it was for protesting in his uniform.

On top of that, responding to an officer with an obscenity when you are still a member of the IRR is remarkably short-sighted.

It's like cursing out a judge just befor sentencing. What do you IMAGINE would happen ?

Cato Uticensis said...

Kokesh, you are a poster boy for Liberal traitors trying to help the terrorists win in Iraq. You are not a victim here, and you well know it. You are just trying to set yourself up as a Liberal Media darling and living the high life while you are doing it. Stop whining like a little bitch.

We all know when we take the oath that you can't speak out against the military when on duty. And disgrace to the service that you are, you are still obligated to obey its rules.

So, you want sympathy? While the people of Venezuela are risking their necks in the streets TRULY fighting for free speech that is being taken from them, you want us to look at you and cry?

OK, here's a pity party for you-

1-2-3 AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!

poor baby.

You betrayed this country on foreign soil, you are a disgrace. And don't give me the BS about "dissent is the highest form of patriotism." Dissent is what people who love this country do who sincerely seek to better it. It is not describing traitorous swine who oink for the benefit of enemies who seek to kill us.

Matt Dedinas
3rd Infantry Division 1996-1999
Amrican Conservative Veterans

djetaugh said...

I served from 1977-1988 and know what it is to loose one's rights while protecting those of others. I knew several vets from VVA during and after Vietnam. I have 3 family members currently serving in Iraq. Thousands of homeless vets wear uniforms without insignia, it is all they have. If doing so were against the law, thousands of Army Surplus shops would go out of business. Thank you for speaking out against "Viet-raq".

JockWriter said...

Adam,

I just read some of the stuff going on with the military's treatment of you and some of the nasty, unAmerican comments you have been receiving just for standing up for yourself and defending what you think is right. Let no one tell you what you're doing is bogus or you're some pussy. It takes a real man to stand by his convictions and I salute you. Good luck to your fight and your future in political management.

CT said...

Anonymous 8:38, hunting is not a political activity, should you be wearing your uniform while hunting, that is up for debate. Here is my view on it folks, I think Adam has every right to speak what he feels, even though I don't agree with any of it. The problem is that he is using a military uniform in an unauthorized manner, ie. for political means. He knows and all of us that have worn a uniform know that this is a big no no. Now if he would have waited until the end of his 8 years obligation, they couldn't touch him. He still has to abide by the USMJ and no he can't go tell an officer to go "F" himself. For those of you with the "doesn't the Marine Corps have better things to do" questions, well yes and no. The majority of the Marine Corps could care less about this situation and maybe don't even know about it, because they are busy with fighting a war. But there are Marines and units out there (HQ Marine Corps Legal) that has the job of ensuring all members, regardless of duty status abide by the rules. That is what makes the military the military folks, we have rules and we enforce them, at least better than the civilian sector. Anyway, Adam, I don't agree with a damn word you say, but think you should be allowed to say it, I know I've fought for you to have that right. But the uniform represents the Marine Corps and this country, not any individual. So wearing it, or part of it to a political function is saying that you are representing the Marines in your cause. The majority of us (Jarheads)don't agree with you, and that is why we have the rules we do and probably why legal action is being taken against you. Take care and Semper Fi!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Anonymous 5:11, sounds like you've never been overseas. Anyone who's in the shit is way too head down to be thinking about what's going on back here. Or should be. And since when did the Corps get so chickenshit about war trophys? It's a busted ass world where if you put your life on the line you can't bring back some toys.

ntodd said...

Yes, civil disobedience has consequences. What the anonymous, clearly non-vet assholes don't get is that a man who served with courage and honor in a war zone is showing similar courage and honor in trying to bring his brothers home.

Oorah, Marine. And peace.

Anonymous said...

Cpl Kokesh, while I disagree with your actions, you certainly have the right to voice your opinion, as that is part of being an American. As a member of the IRR, I'm afraid I have to say you may have made a mistake, inadvertent as it was. Despite being discharged, members of the IRR are still subject to the UCMJ. It appears you may have to make some concessions to get out of this situation. Your heart may have been in the right place in your opinion, but the black and white of the matter is that you were in violation of the UCMJ, which you are still obligated to adhere to.

Anonymous said...

Hi Mr. Kokesh. This being my first time hearing this, I have some reading to do. But before that I want to say , YOU have my SUPPORT on this. Stay strong, Just know we are behind you 100%.

Horace said...

To "anonymous"
Speaking as an ex-Marine myself, there's a world of difference between the "soldier" who just "follow orders" even when he knows those orders are criminal and morally reprehensible, and the true warrior who follows his own conscience, and most of all honors what's in his heart. Also it's extremely honorable for you to cite Adams "indiscretions", to judge him, while doing so under the name "anoymous", yep, that's the stuff heroes are made of.

To "neocon"
Speaking as a Black Man in general, it's apparent you do a thorough enough job of embarassing yourself, and apparently making a cesspool of your life so I won't contribute to that any moreso.

Adam, thanks for being an inspiration and living life like you "own a set!" We "got your back!" here in North Cali.

Blessings!,

Horace R Boykin
U.S Marines (active 1979 to 1982)
Sacramento, California

Skip Smith said...

Although I agree with your right to lawfully protest Operation Iraqi Freedom as a civilian, you don't have the right to tell a superior officer to 'go fuck themselves' as a Marine.

What, were you asleep in class that day in basic training?

Skip Smith
MSgt. USAF(Ret)

P.S. Laurie (May 27, 2007 10:24 AM)
How many days in service to this country have YOU served?

Anonymous said...

Adam, Do you recall if you where telling the trouth when you said "I had a great experience, and I'll never regret for a second that I volunteered." Refering to your first and only tour in Iraq.

Let me count the Lies. For you.

An Adj said...

Here’s the basic breakdown of this situation. Cpl Kokesh is using his position against the war in an attempt to paralyze the command element at MOBCOM. This is where the email sent to him originated. By his actions, the Adjutant, CG, and all others involved now have to pay special attention to Cpl Kokesh because Cpl Kokesh’s intent is to hold the unit hostage. Due to his lack of tact and personal bearing, leadership traits I’m sure he’s completely forgotten, Cpl Kokesh has taken this issue, disguised at a veteran against the war, and turned it into an issue of a disgruntled Marine against the Corps.

The command element of this unit could be spending valuable time conducting the day to day business of processing awards, fitness reports, and mission related correspondence. The CG now has to focus attention on this annoyance, along with many others that are sure to exist in the form of routine NJP’s and investigations internal to any command. Cpl Kokesh is aware of this. He has been the recipient of an NJP in the past while on active duty. He knows how this can affect a battalion or regiment respectively. What he doesn’t fully understand is the implications of his actions in depth.

Not only does the command now have to assign an officer or SNCO as an investigating officer, extra time has to be taken away from the day-to-day business; business that is meant to serve the Marines who are either doing their pre-deployment work-ups, or others who are in the process of getting out of the Marine Corps. Stack this onto the aforementioned nuisance of the 10 percent who are being administratively separated for to the wide variety of offenses against the UCMJ and you have a constant thorn in the backside of any given command. Cpl Kokesh is just one such thorn. Good job Marine. You must be proud. After all, you’ve made this all about you. Let’s hear your speech on troop welfare now.

Marinemommilof3 said...

Adam:
I am very proud of what you are standing for...Freedom of Speech.
Funny (not) how we can fight for the Iraqi's freedoms (that is what we are now fighting for this month isn't it? or has the new talking point changed already?) but you and I have less and less everyday.
When 9/11 happened I encouraged my son to join. All he talked about was getting Bin Forgotten, I mean, Bid Laden. Little did I know or realize, this would turn into a war for Bush's oil, Cheney's oil, Haliburton no bid contracts, Blackwater high bid contracts or making money for the Carilse group!
Those w/o b*lls, can post with anonymity, (you gave them that freedom)but you have chose to stand tall. Thank you from a
Very Proud Marine Mom
Semper Fi
Dawn
Oceanside, Cali

lindy said...

Adam, your post on this blog along with your response to the Major is VERY telling about you. It wreaks of sour grapes. I'm just sayin'...

Anonymous said...

This is just a little FYI for all you right wing cretins out there who've either never worn the uniform or haven't put one on since the first Bush administration. Kokesh is not alone in his feelings. More and more Iraqi military folk are seeing what this war is really about. Profits for KBR/Halliburton, ie Cheney and friends. And let me tell you. They are PISSED OFF! And when they come home, I suggest you keep your right wing comments to yourselves because they will beat you til you piss blood. Too bad you neo cons don't believe in PTSD, well I mean too bad FOR YOU. We're coming for you! PS Keep up the great work Kokesh. We military famlies are behind you! PSS If I wasn't married and ten years your senoir, you'd be in big trouble mister, keep hitting the weights. From Strawberry Bitch.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Kokesh,

You should have done the protest in Army Style BDU's without ANY insignia of any type.
Unfortunately, as you are finding out you wore the MARPAT uniform complete with the EGA, which makes it a Naval Service uniform.

By wearing the MARPAT uniform, complete with boonie hat with EGA, you wanted people to know you served in the Marines. That was against the regs......since you are a grad student...you need to research into political movements by members of the reserve components a little better.....

You even said the below statement, which makes me puzzled:

"I love the Marine Corps," he said. "I always have loved the Marine Corps, and that is why I'm particularly offended to see it being used for political ends."

If you said the above, then why wear a MARPAT uniform, using it for political ends?

If you get out of this scott free, you need to go back to GMU, and retake the undergrad critical thinking class.

If you get an OTH, you may lose your VA educational benefits, but I think you should ask for them to be re-instated so you can take a class about critical thinking...or take out another loan.

You are NOT a disgrace to the Marine Corps, but next time, you need to think before you act.

But in this case, your past precedes you, especially in the matter of bringing a weapon back from theatre......

You are a loose cannon that the Corps needs to get rid of....either Honorably, or Other than Honorable.

In your case it was un-honorable to utilize the uniform you had friends die in for political statements.

Read the regs next time. The Corps still owns you....for 2 more weeks anyway.

ewe said...

you have the right to speak and i support you.

Sam said...

I have seen some of the protest you participated in Germany. You are one vulgar individual. It was disgraceful how you and your buddies disrespected the troops and their families. While you may be against the war, your words clearly left no doubt you did not support the troops. I was appaled at your little demonstrations and do hope you'll get your status changed. You are still IRR, maybe you should have just kept your mouth shut until June...be an adult and take responsibility for your actions.

Anonymous said...

You have your rights to protest all you want, you served to protect those freedoms as did I and I support you in your choice to do so. Don't expect many of us to support your views though Adam, not all Marines think as you do.

Btw, next time you want to let everyone know you're a Marine at one of these functions, just wear a t-shirt or follow the regs as we all know you can't wear your uniform to such activities.

Anonymous said...

Let's not kid ourselves. He's being targeted because of his politics. If he had worn a uniform to a GOP fundraiser or, say, the CONSERVATIVE POLITICAL ACTION CONFERENCE, no one would've batted an eye.

Here's proof...

Maj. Eric Egland at CPAC

Adj said...

I've read the email letter from Major Whyte a few times over and I can't seem to find anything in the content that would indicate a threat or any other possible wording of mal-intent. To me it seems the major was trying to establish a good rapport by indicating that you “might be” in violation of a UCMJ article. He even goes a step farther in comparing your issue to the current geopolitical issues as if to say: “hey, this is silly, but let me tell you what my obligations are on my end”.

If you would have hit the reply and said: “roger sir, got the email, thanks for the heads up”, I have a strong feeling that would have been that. Instead you personalized the issue and asked the major to kindly go “fu_k himself” or words to that effect. Are you stupid? No, really, for real now, how dumb are you? Hey if Cpl Kokesh can tell a major to go “f-himself” then it must be ok for PVT’s, PFC’s, LCpl’s to tell officers to fu_k themselves. Why not? As an NCO you have set the precedence.

The major was hanging all kinds of olive branches out but you chose to be an ASS. He didn’t have to tell you he was assigned as the investigating officer. He didn’t even have to tell you he had a strong desire to help a fellow Marine. But, he chose to be on the level with you and you chose to take a piss on the whole thing. You’ll get what you deserve.

Ryan (ex military 99-04) said...

People like you make me sick. Just cause you served doesnt mean that it is Ok to protest how you did. People are right, you do have the freedom of speech, you are just to stupid to realize whats right and wrong. First thing I did when I got out the military was take all the tags off my uniforms.

I hope you are severely punished.

I also knew when I got out that no matter how much I hated my superior E-7s and up, that it wouldnt be smart to send hate emails I so badly wanted to do.

Its sad how the only thing you other people can do is badmouth neocons ignorance and racism. Wow, good job. One person doesnt represent the whole non anti-war population.

Anonymous said...

I read your website to hear your side. I am not impressed. You violated your oath to our country in order forward your petty political agenda. To know that you are a fellow vet brings me shame.

Dennis

Anonymous said...

If you were wearing a MARPAT uniform, it has the Marine Corps emblem incorporated into it's design. Civilians cannot buy this uniform, it's strictly for active duty Marine's. So, you were in uniform, and you were, whether you intended to or not, representing the Marine Corps. Nothing would have been said had you protested in civilian clothes. You chose to bring the uniform into it, to make a point, and now the military will make theirs. Think before you act!

Anonymous said...

i like how you try to swing this into a "I got in trouble because I protested against the war. The military is trying to take my rights away!" Please. You are being looked at because you are still under contract, and wore a military uniform to a protest. There are rules and regulations that govern how and when to wear a uniform, and you ignored them. Had you protested in civilian clothes, you would have not been in this pickle. There are many people against the war, you are not the only person to find issue with it. Acting like an asshole though is only going to bring unwanted attention your way, and make people tune out what you are saying because it is filled with vindictive diatribe. You opened up this can of worms by not being well versed on the UCMJ, and now you will have to accept the consequences. I find it funny that you are worried about your money, your college etc. when you openly and vulgarly bite the hand that feeds you, especially when that side has the regulations to back it's laws that govern your service. Maybe it's your age, maybe it's your small amount of time in the service, but someday son you have to grow up and follow the contracts you sign. If you don't, the fall out is on you and you only.

Anonymous said...

You asked. IMO you should not be able to have it both ways. It's wrong to except benefits when you don't follow the rules. I'm a tax payer. I don't feel you should be given the benefits. Both of my sons are defending our freedoms. We're not free to break rules and disobey laws. Further, I feel your premise is based in selfish lies. Mostly, your words and action show disregard to those still deployed. I take this personal so I'll keep an eye on this to see what happens. It's made very clear that you are not allowed to use the uniform in this way. You decided to anyway. You owe me, my sons, and this country an apology.

Tom Doff said...

Sgt. Kokesh,

I salute you. If you are taking a poll, put me down in the column that says; 'Marine Majors who think they have the right to determine what civilian veterans can or cannot say can GO F*CK THEMSELVES'.

Best of luck, you deserve it and our thanks,

Tom Doff

Anonymous said...

FOr you simple minded illiterates out there, that keep posting against the Marine Corps...

They are NOT telling this young man he cannot protest. They are telling this young man that he CANNOT wear a uniform to do it. If you are going to fight a battle, make sure you know what the hell it is about before you start making illiterate statements. Pfffttt...

Gandolfo said...

If he can't wear a uniform then how come Bush could?!? Anytime there is a camera on Bush, it is a political rally one way or another. So every single member of the military seen on camera with Bush, Cheney, Rice or any of the usual suspects, they have broken the law as well. Don't quote it unless you want be cut down by it!

Anonymous said...

Gandalfo...You need to get an education. Your remark made no sense, has nothing to do with this man's protest, and shows you are grasping at straws because you have no clue. When the President is visiing with troops, of course they will be wearing their uniforms. They are not protesting, or doing anything illegal. D***-A##

Rachel Kenney said...

This country was founded by those who dared to question their government and the way of life that was being forced upon them. It is our primary duty as Americans to act upon our concience in order to maintain the integrity of our country. It takes courage to defend your country, but it takes even greater courage to defy your country! You are a hero and a TRUE patriot, Adam. Thank you for your unwavering service.