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The real story about the veteran and the DC protest: Veteran claims he was spit on but Code Pink honored him

Posted by Susan Eleuterio on February 4th, 2007

Fox News and NPR"s On the Media reported on a story of Joshua Sparling, an Iraq vet who got a lot of airtime claiming he was spit on at the DC protest- I saw Colonel Ann Wright speak to Joshua at the CP rally and she not only honored him but thanked him for his service- we are indeed women of peace-too bad this story hasn't been reported.

Email sent to NPR 's On the Media show today- As a folklorist who studies urban legends, I was thrilled that "On the Media" spoke with Jerry Lemke who has actually researched whether veterans were spit on after the Vietnam war, but I think you missed a major piece of the story about Joshua Sparling- I was holding a banner near the Code Pink rally stage in DC where Sparling claims he was spit on- he was extremely agitated and yelling at each speaker- I watched as Colonel Ann Wright, a former US diplomat (and one of the highest ranking women who has come out against the war) who resigned over the Iraq war gently went up to Sparling, put her arm around him and listened to him- she showed her skills as a diplomat and her ability to speak truth to a veteran -not only did Sparling stop screaming at the speakers, but Colonel Wright introduced him from the stage and thanked him for his service-for which he was applauded by the crowd (all of us anti war protesters appauding a vet-how about that) if you check the transcripts from Sparling's interview on FOX news, he actually mentioned that Code Pink allowed him to speak but he forgot to mention that he was applauded- I did not see any one spit at him or treat him with anything but respect- I agree with Lemke that these veterans share a frustration and sorrow (not to mention anger) with Vietnam vets who came back from service to find that they had fought in an unpopular war- their belief system makes it easier to be angry at anti war protestors than at the commander in chief who lied to them in the first place.

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