Evan Knappenberger, left, with Adam Kokesh
(Photo Credit: By Haraz N. Ghanbari — Associated Press Photo)
VIGIL ON THE MALL
Veteran Questions Ethics of War Policies
By Sylvia Moreno
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, August 29, 2007; Page B06
Evan Knappenberger is like many young post-Sept. 11 Army enlistees who went from high school into the military for patriotic reasons. He wanted to spread democracy, to topple Saddam Hussein, "to do something to affect the world in a good way," the freckled 22-year-old says.
Today, Knappenberger is a disillusioned Iraq War veteran, four months out of the military and on a one-man mission as a peace activist campaigning against Defense Department policies that he believes unethically support the continuation of the war.
He is not so much protesting as standing guard against the Pentagon's so-called "stop-loss" and "inactive reserve" policies, both designed to maintain troop strength in light of failed recruitment goals. His platform is a makeshift six-foot-tall guard tower that he erected Sunday next to the Washington Monument. There, outfitted in his battle dress uniform, Knappenberger is holding a vigil for seven nights and eight days. ...(more)