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July 29, 2008

Color of Change demands investigation into death of soldier likely murdered in Iraq

The Color of Change is circulating an online petition calling upon the House Oversight Committee to hold a hearing into the death of Pfc. LaVena Johnson, whose violent death in Iraq was falsely deemed a suicide:

Dear Congressman Waxman:

I'm calling on you, as chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, to conduct a hearing into the death of Pfc. LaVena Johnson. Despite overwhelming evidence that Pfc. Johnson was brutally murdered in Iraq three years ago, the US Army continues to call her death a suicide — refusing to investigate the case and prosecute the perpetrators of this terrible crime.

Congress should not allow the US Army to ignore powerful physical evidence from investigators, withhold requested information and force family members through years of denials and delays. Worse, it appears that the LaVena Johnson case is not unique, and there is a pattern of the Army calling rape-murders suicide and covering up the crimes. This is a disgrace.

I'm standing with the family of LaVena Johnson and requesting that you immediately conduct a hearing into the cause of her death and the US Army's handling of this case and others like it.

Signed,

[Click here to add your name.]

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Comments

Pfc. LaVena Johnson was from Saint Louis where I'm from, so I've been casually keeping up with the story.

The family and those of us who want to see justice served seem to be facing a brick wall of silence and misdirection.

This is Standard Operating Procedure from what I can tell.

Maybe if we had a draft and more white collar families were brought into the context of war and service perhaps there would be more of an outcry for justice and cleaning up a sickening sweep-them-under-the-rug military policy.

the only problem there is that there are plenty of white folks there voluntarily and that MOST of the folks I see at anti war demos ARE white.

As well, the same whiteys would be staying home with the black kid who is the son of the seagram's manager here locally.

Just sayin.

What I originally came here to say was :
bout fuckin time.
My white ass pushed pretty hard for this.
I wish people could for god's sake look in the fucking mirror and see something besides THE COLOR OF THEIR SKIN.

and please forgive me. I'm not sure whether to laugh at myself or not. Probably I should ....BUT, I read white and it says white collar. I get very personally vexed by these things because for a country on it's way to beige we shouldn't be drawing all these color parallels. Here it was a case of idiocy on my own part.
See, I'm quick to admit it.

Still, it needed said anyway. just not here. LOL.

I see this issue as more class warfare than a white vs. black issue. Although, I'm sure somehow Pfc. Levena Johnson's blackness might play somewhat in the lack of scrutiny and oversight. The top brass in our military (and the people most likely in charge of ongoing investigations) are almost exclusively white.

The facts are...rich kids don't join the military. But if a rich person's kid was killed outside of combat under dubious circumstances as in Pfc Johnson's case, you just KNOW there would be wall to wall coverage by the media outlets, and the DoD would probably take events like this far more seriously.

That's why there should have been a draft call in 2001. While I believe a volunteer army is great for peacetime, if you're gonna go to war (even a Rumsfeld battle plan with less than a third of the actual troops needed)...you go all out or don't go.

Shared sacrifice seems to be lost in modern society. Since 2001, our battle call has been "Go buy SUVs at 0% financing". Our leadership (and perhaps even each one of us) and fully culpable here.

You get what you pay for...or should I say...you get what you vote for. Or should I say...you get what Diebold wants you to vote for...

The other problem is that 45% of all women in the armed forces have to deal with sexual advances and even sexual assaults by their comrades. Most of these events go unreported.

Sure, the military is male dominated, but military sanctioned rape and murder is an issue that all americans must pay attention to.

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