Veterans Equal Rights Protection Advocacy, Inc.
~VERPA~

P.O. Box 8225, Medford, OR 97504-0225
"Veterans & Families For Equal Justice Under Law"

Inc. December 1999
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January 22, 2005 (Amended)

Veterans Equal Rights Protection Advocacy, Inc. (VERPA) Contacts:

Barb Cragnotti, Legislative Coordinator @ verpalegislative@aol.com /or/ (541) 773-8169

Jeffrey A. Trueman, Executive Director @ verpaphila1@aol.com /or/ (757) 338-0593

PRESS ADVISORY - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

VERPA Inc. Announces Their Plan To Petition
The Organization of American States (OAS) Seeking Redress Of
Human & Constitutional Rights Abuses Arising Within
The United States Armed Forces Under The Provisions Of The Feres Doctrine

MEDFORD, OR -- VERPA Inc., (http://www.verpa.org/), announces its intent to petition the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Commission and following; the Organization of American States (OAS) to expose and remedy the atrocities being committed against American military members and families under the unconstitutional judicial legislation known as the Feres Doctrine. The Feres Doctrine is a judge made law that strips American service men and women of their constitutional rights.

VERPA’s proceeding to the UN, we feel is necessary, not for “resolution” of the Feres Doctrine subject matter, but to start to frame human rights law issues brought about by the Feres Doctrine. Specifically, within the United States Armed Forces, the Feres Doctrine strips American service members and other legally inducted persons serving to protect and defend the United States Constitution, from "equal protection" of the very constitution they are asked to sacrifice life and limb to preserve.

Introduction

This press advisory summarizes five years of good faith efforts by VERPA and its volunteer group of American military Veterans and families to compel the United States Congress to “remedy” the judicially created Feres Doctrine.

The Feres Doctrine became official United States Government policy on December 4, 1950 and is virtually unknown in American Society. Again, the Feres Doctrine is a judge made law that strips American service men and women of their constitutional rights. It is also an exemption to the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) of 1946. Its unconstitutional grant of “sovereign immunity” is directly contributed to unspeakable atrocities of American service members and their families, rarely heard of in the American public. As a matter of fact, the crimes being condoned by the United States Federal Government, if committed by a foreign government, would undoubtedly lead to a declaration of War. VERPA asserts, all Americans either directly or indirectly are being betrayed by this unconstitutional judge made law. This is due to the fact that, rather then the Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecuting crimes under the Inspector General Act (IG Act) of 1978, the DOJ continues to defend federal employees who's wrongful acts or omissions violate the IG Act and result in injury or death to honorable men and women serving the Nation, using taxpayer's money.

Ironically, the men and women of the United States Armed Forces, fighting to restore human rights to the Iraqi and Afghanistan people, are denied redress of similar human rights abuses under the Feres Doctrine. It is a chilling reality that many Members of the United States Congress do not want their constituents to know about.

With the inevitability of a military draft of 18-26 year old males and females in the summer of 2005; as the Selected Service draft boards are manned and ready, and the reality of “stop loss” and reactivation of “paper soldiers” to continue the prosecution of the so-called global war on international terror, this press release is undoubtedly the most critical document produced by VERPA since our incorporation in 1999.

The Feres Doctrine abolishment movement is a non-partisan issue and it is not an attack against Republicans, Democrats, Independents or of any political affiliation nor is it an attack against our system of government. It is about "individual accountability" and serious crimes being committed against American service members, which also negatively impact their families.

The harsh reality of the Feres Doctrine grant of “sovereign immunity” and its contempt towards American service members and families is best summed up by quote of former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger: "Military men are just dumb stupid animals to be used as pawns for foreign policy." VERPA asserts for example, if the Feres Doctrine did not exist, many of our brave American soldiers who fought in the Vietnam War and have suffered from the deadly affects of Agent Orange would be alive today! More recently Gulf War Syndrome/Illnesses, however, the atrocities date back to Atomic testing since the inception of the unconstitutional Feres Doctrine and continue to this very day in all aspects of military service.

A Brief History of Atrocities Allowed By The Feres Doctrine

For the past 54 years the Feres Doctrine’s exemption under the FTCA has denied Americans and other legally inducted persons in the United States Armed Forces from "equal protection" of the United States Constitution to petition the federal courts for redress of grievances; arising from the wrongful acts or omissions of federal employees. This direct violation of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution is the primary reason the Feres Doctrine is unconstitutional. In addition, it affords the Executive branch of the Federal Government “absolute power” over the military and violates the “separation of powers” clause of the United States Constitution. Yet again, making the judge created Feres Doctrine unconstitutional. Notwithstanding, the long-train of systemic abuse includes acts of fraud, waste and abuse arising within the military’s command, legal and medical systems under the Feres Doctrine’s grant of sovereign immunity. The “individual” destruction of service members’ human and constitutional rights is absolutely chilling and serious public trust matters, which should be the discussion on every news program in America.

VERPA affirmatively asserts, due to the United States Congress’s failure to remedy the unconstitutional Feres Doctrine or the United States Supreme Court’s unwillingness to overturn this abomination to ensure checks and balances on power in the military, the Feres Doctrine has resulted in more American soldiers being injured or killed by this law’s existence than all wars combined dating back to the American Revolution. Each day the Feres Doctrine remains the law of the land, it not only negatively impacts the lives of a service member or loved one it also indirectly impacts all Americans. It can be argued, Saddam Hussein could have never dreamed of injuring or killing more Americans than the Feres Doctrine has, and will continue to, if not abolished without further delay.

The VERPA Act and The Senate Judiciary Committee

Since October 8, 2002, VERPA has attempted to amicably work with the Senate Judiciary Committee and specifically with Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA), who chaired hearings on the Feres Doctrine on that date. VERPA has submitted proposed grassroots legislation entitled the “Military and Veterans Equal Rights Protection Act,“ short title; VERPA Act to Senator Arlen Specter and all Members of the United States Senate to abolish the Feres Doctrine without disrupting good order and discipline in the military. Unfortunately, even though Senator Specter’s legal counsel has approved the language of the VERPA Act, our humble petitions and assertions that the Feres Doctrine must be abolished to prevent the following wrongful acts and omissions have been ignored:

(1), Murders, (2), Rapes, (3), human experimentation in violation of the Nuremberg Code, (Atomic Testing, LSD, Anthrax, other FDA unapproved inoculations), (4), Agent Orange and Gulf War Syndrome exposures and failure to treat, (5), Abuse of Power and Gross Negligent Legal and Medical Acts or Omissions, (6), Undue Command Influence, (7), Abuse and Double Standards under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), (8) Falsification of Official Documents, (9), Abuse of the military’s mental health system and administrative discharge process to retaliate against service members who expose corruption and to silence claims of fraud, waste and abuse, (10), service-connected mental or physical injury or injustice from being fully identified prior to a service members discharge resulting in years of emotional and financial hardships of honorably discharged Americans seeking just and equitable benefits within the VA health care system.

VERPA believes the above stated abuses and wrongs arising “incident to service” in our military and denied redress under the Feres Doctrine are serious public trust matters, calling for congressional hearings to abolish this unconstitutional judge made law without further delay. Additionally, the general public may review comments of American service members or family members betrayed by the Feres Doctrine’s bar on judicial review by accessing VERPA’s on-line petition in support of our pending legislation to abolish the Feres Doctrine at: www.petitiononline.com/fd1950/petition.html. In total, over 6,000 Americans have documented a service-connected injury or injustice since our incorporation in 1999. However, we believe if the Feres Doctrine subject matter were to be exposed by the mainstream media to the American People, millions of claims would surface covering the 54 years the Feres Doctrine has been the law of the land and the American People would be outraged.

As the "Umbrella" Organization to abolish the Feres Doctrine, VERPA's mission has gained the support of countless military and Veterans’ rights organizations as well as Veterans, families and loved ones. However, there is some concern the VERPA Act would lead to a flood of lawsuits arising out of the military. This is not true. It must be specifically stated that VERPA‘s initiatives to abolish the Feres Doctrine will not negatively impact good order and discipline in the Armed Forces nor lead to frivolous lawsuits. Nor will any claim of negligence or injury or injustice arising out of combat be questioned, as the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) is the proper statutory authority to address those types of grievances. The overall goal with abolishing the Feres Doctrine is to institute “individual accountability” within the Department of Defense (DOD/Armed Forces) and Veterans Administration (VA) to prevent intentional, deliberate, malicious, or gross/criminal acts and omissions of federal employees which lead to injury or death of honorable Americans serving to protect and defend the United States Constitution.

The Failure Of The Congress To Act

Since October 8, 2002 when Senator Specter chaired the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on the subject matter of the Feres Doctrine our humbled petitions to our government to resume productive hearings to abolish the Feres Doctrine have been ignored. This is a blatant intentional failure by all Members of the United States Senate to address and remedy all issues of fraud, waste, abuse and dangers to the public health and welfare being silenced under the Feres Doctrine cannot continue and as a final showing of our good faith effort, before proceeding to the UN and the OAS, VERPA is affording each Senator of the 109th Congress the opportunity to act and prevent any further abuses under Feres Doctrine.

At the time of this release, VERPA is in the process of presenting all Senators one final copy of the VERPA Act, as well as a copy of this release. This is our final effort to determine which Senators will step up and agree that American military men and women, who are presently being injured and killed fighting the so-called war on terror, deserve the same protection of their human and constitutional rights as the Iraqi people are receiving.

The continued failure of the Congress and most specifically, the United States Senate to act and prevent intentional and deliberate abuses leading to injury or death of our service members, arising from gross or criminal negligent military acts, omissions or decisions condoned under the Feres Doctrine, is unacceptable! It is even more unacceptable in the year 2005, when American men and women are being ordered to fight the war on terror to preserve “human rights” around the world, when; they are denied their very own “human rights” due to the Feres Doctrine. This fact is a national disgrace and the question must be asked: “Why would any young American want to fight and risk being injured or killed for a government who denies them equal protection of the United States Constitution due to the judge created Feres Doctrine?” It makes no sense.

VERPA’s UN and OAS initiatives can be completely avoided if all United States Senators will begin the process of remedying the unconstitutional Feres Doctrine by supporting VERPA’s grassroots proposed legislation. In sum, Senator Arlen Specter must be compelled to resume hearings to remedy the unconstitutional Feres Doctrine and this process can begin with no more excuses now that Mr. Specter is the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. The evidence to support abolishment of the Feres Doctrine is substantially documented in VERPA’s Official Statement for the Public Record arising in the wake of the Feres Doctrine hearings. The VERPA Act “case studies” provide coverage for all other similarly situated Americans denied redress of service-connected injury or injustice being condoned by the United States Government under the Feres Doctrine. For example, the issue of military medical malpractice is nothing new to the United States Congress. During the 100th and 101st Congress, legislation to address military medical malpractice passed the House of Representatives only to be killed in the Senate. Thus VERPA, being solely funded by its members, specifically focused on the Senate and the substantial documentary evidence provided in the official record of the Feres Doctrine hearings demand the Senate to conduct new hearings at this time.

VERPA asserts the strongest argument that supports our mission to abolish the Feres Doctrine and should compel the United States Senate to end this 54 year atrocity arises from the dissenting opinion of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Scalia who stated in the case of United States v. Johnson, (1987):

"Feres was wrongly decided and heartily deserves the widespread, almost universal criticism it has received." Furthermore, "Congress's inaction regarding this doctrine and its doing little, if anything in the way of modifying it to prevent Constitutional claims is clearly unjust and irrational. Again, allowing such power to military leaders can and does result in abuse therefore, where are the checks and balances on the military."

After five years of evidence collection and submissions to Congress, VERPA affirmatively asserts and notwithstanding systemic abuses in the military’s command, legal and medical systems; the failure of the United States Senate to begin hearings to abolish the Feres Doctrine will be viewed as the intentional and deliberate failure to act and prevent crimes against American service members’ human and constitutional rights.

It is further noted, VERPA’s UN and OAS initiative will not negatively impact the sovereignty of our government and for the record; the United States is a signatory State of the OAS Charter. Therefore, prior to proceeding to the UN to establish an international foundation to advance and OAS we are requesting a reply from all Senators by February 15, 2005. This will tell us if they support VERPA’s initiative to abolish the Feres Doctrine, or not.

It should be further noted, in addition to Justice Scalia’s strong opposition to the Feres Doctrine, there are many federal judges and scholars who also agree the Feres Doctrine is bad law.

How the American People Can Help Their Military Veterans And Families

The time is now for all Americans, who support the men and women of our Armed Forces, to come to their aide and liberate them from the unconstitutional Feres Doctrine. With the pending military draft, no one is safe from the Feres Doctrine! If we as Americans wish to seek accountability in the DOD/Armed Forces and VA and government in general, it begins with abolishing the Feres Doctrine!

Please call both of your Senator's local offices and ask them to support the VERPA Act and let them know that the time is now to abolish the Feres Doctrine. Your Senator's information is at http://www.congress.org/ then put in your zip code. Each call is logged and the more calls each office receives, the more recognition your call will get, so please have everyone you know call!


We urge all Military, Veterans and family, who reasonably believe there has been a service-connected injury or injustice of a loved one or themselves that has been denied lawful redress to please contact VERPA at; verpalegislative@aol.com for your voice to be heard and claim to be documented for the public record.

Our UN and OAS initiative must be supported by the "Feres Doctrine Resolution" to show all organizations and individual military and Veterans Rights advocates agree the Feres Doctrine is bad law and unconstitutional. Therefore, VERPA's Feres Doctrine Resolution Coordinator, Johnny O'Brien will be accepting input from all military or veterans' organizations and individuals who wish to submit their suggestions. Johnny can be reached at: ORIGINALJOHNNYO@yahoo.com. Johnny will be also disseminating this press release to all Human Rights and other professional organizations seeking to unite all aspects of American society to liberate our service members and loved ones from the chilling effects of the Feres Doctrine. The “Resolution” will in essence state the Feres Doctrine's judicial creation and grant of “sovereign immunity” is unconstitutional and has denied you or a loved one of the inalienable right to petition the government for redress of grievances. This inalienable right is the most fundamental of all rights under the United States Constitution as cited in the First Amendment.

For VERPA to proceed with our legislation and to petition the UN and the OAS, on your behalf, it will take your support and funding. VERPA is solely funded and we have expended our own funds to come to where we are today. Donations to VERPA Are Not Tax Deductible, but they are greatly appreciated and will be used solely for the purpose indicated. In essence, if all betrayed American Veterans or loved ones donated simply one (1) dollar to help VERPA abolish the Feres Doctrine, it could happen.

To receive a copy of "The Military & Veterans Equal Rights Protection Act" Point Paper, please send an email to verpalegislative@aol.com and specify "VERPA Act" on the subject line. If you would like a copy of VERPA’s Press Package, please mail your request, along with your name, address, and check in the amount of $10.00 made payable to “VERPA” to VERPA, PO Box 8225, Medford, OR 97504-0225. $10.00 covers the cost of the package and postage and is not a donation.

Conclusion

For more information about the VERPA movement and how it potentially impacts all 18-26 year old American Citizens and legal residents with the pending military draft, in addition to hard facts to support our legal position; the United States Government has willfully failed to act and prevent blatant human, constitutional and systemic abuses arising in the United States Armed Forces due to the Feres Doctrine’s grant of "sovereign immunity,” please see our web site at: http://www.verpa.org/.

In the United States of America there are an estimated 17 million Veterans attempting to obtain lawful benefits from the VA, not including future Veterans who are fighting the international war on terror. If all Veterans and families pull together to abolish the Feres Doctrine, the 535 Members of the United States Congress will have no choice but to hear our petitions for redress of grievances.

The Americans who make up “VERPA” hope this press release will provide credible insight as to how poorly America’s service members, Veterans and families are being treated by the United States Government due to the Feres Doctrine. The men and women who serve to keep us free deserve “absolute” protection of the United States Constitution.

//END//

Equal Justice for Veterans & Families can happen via abolishment of the Feres Doctrine!