US Veterans to Return Medals at NATO Protest

Controversial move intended to protest the war on terror
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 16, 2012 4:31 PM CDT
A pair of medals are seen on an American flag in this file photo.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – A group of 30 to 50 US veterans from the post-9/11 era intend to return their service medals this Sunday to protest a war on terror they say they no longer believe in. The veterans plan to lead an anti-war march on a NATO summit in Chicago, carrying American flags, MSNBC reports. When they reach the summit, they intend to lower their American flags and pin the medals to them, raising white flags in their stead.

They hope to hand the medals to NATO officials but, if they can't, they may just throw them toward the convention center. "I feel like this is a really good way for me to kind of, not clear my conscience, but just make a step in the direction of healing," says one veteran taking part. It's a message to the Afghan and Iraqi people that "we're standing by their side and we're not standing with NATO anymore." But the move is controversial. "They're as much of a disgrace as the veterans back in the Vietnam days that did the same thing," opined one retired Army sergeant.

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