WEEK 3: Take the Lead, State-by-State
The past two weeks have been enormously successful for Vets for Freedom. The voices of pro-mission Iraq and Afghanistan veterans are finally being heard on Capitol Hill and throughout America.
Don't think so? Read this piece on NRO, this lead editorial in the Washington Times, or this front page article in The Politico.
Click here to read about our standing-room-only press conference with nine U.S. senators on Tuesday and here to read about our hour-long private meeting with President Bush on Friday.
My deepest thanks to everyone who made the trip to Washington, DC, last week and to everyone who offered their support. You all made a real difference last week. But, as you know, there is much more work to be done.
Vets for Freedom may have helped stop Congress from declaring defeat in July, but now we need to ensure they continue to hear our message in August and September. We need to capitalize on our momentum and move full-speed ahead. So, going into Week Three of our "10 Weeks to Testimony," we still need your help.
We know you are no stranger to heavy lifting, sacrifice and team work - and this week it's your team work we need. Vets for Freedom is in the process of developing a national presence, which will include state-level grass roots movements in August ... and eventually state chapters around the nation. We are asking you to join in the fight -- in your local area -- to let your Senator and Congressman know that you are committed to supporting our troops and General Petraeus as they execute our nation's new counter-insurgency strategy in Iraq.
What You Can Do This Week! Week #3: Take The Lead, State-by-State
If you don't do anything else this week, at least click here and quickly update your information in the Vets for Freedom database.
In the past few weeks and months, thousands of people have joined Vets for Freedom. We are growing at a phenomenal pace, and I have people emailing me every day asking how they can help. Therefore, we recently updated our database so that it captures enough useful data to ensure we mobilize our members efficiently.
So, before you do anything this afternoon, click here and take 30 seconds to update your information in the Vets for Freedom database. Why, you ask? Because in August, Vets for Freedom plans to mobilize pro-mission veterans around the country, in their home states, to engage members of Congress. Senators and representatives need to hear from us in all forums -- letters to the editor, op-eds, radio, television, advertising, town hall meetings, and phone calls. So, by entering your name, email, phone number, and home-state, we will be able to notify you of opportunities to support the troops and their mission ... in your backyard.
Wanted: State Captains
Many of you have also expressed a desire to go above-and-beyond, to really take the lead. This is your opportunity. We are looking for "State Captains" to coordinate grass-roots efforts in their home state in August.
Every State Captain will receive assistance in formulating a budget and will be provided with a plethora of assistance, to include: contacts with all local media, list of all town-hall meetings, assistance in recruiting other vets, and one-on-one assistance from Vets for Freedom National Field Director Joel Arends.
If you are willing to serve as a State Captain for the month of August -- and take the lead to support our troops overseas -- just send an email to Joel at Joel@vetsforfreedom.org
What Else Can You Do?
1)Spread the word. Tell your friends and fellow veterans about Vets for Freedom. Despite our success, we have only cracked a tiny portion of the pro-mission veterans community. Forward this email to everyone you know today.
2) Write Op-Eds. Take a crack at putting down your thoughts on paper and send them to your local paper. Your community needs to hear from you. Ask your representative to support the troops - and their mission. Your story is the most powerful message we have.
On Tuesday July 24, I will be debating anti-war veteran Jon Soltz on Hardball with Chris Matthews. The segment will be shot live at Hardball Plaza (400 North Capitol Street, Washington, DC) and will include a large audience. If any Vets for Freedom members and/or supporters can make it out, I'd love to see you there. Otherwise, watch it live on MSNBC at 5pm ET.
Let's continue to charge ahead - together. Keep telling your friends and tell them to sign up. And be on the lookout for our "Sign up to Show up" email for September. We plan to have hundreds of pro-mission veterans on Capitol Hill in September, and need your support early. As veterans, and soldiers who have served in the front lines, your voices offer credibility, courage, and leadership to our nation at a crucial time. Keep up the hard work!
Iraq War Veteran 2005-2006
Executive Director, Vets for Freedom
Click here for more information on Vets for Freedom's "10 Weeks to Testimony."