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Vets to march for Katrina survivors, against war


Ahandful of Colorado Springs anti-war veterans will converge on New Orleans next month, joining activists around the nation to ask President Bush to remove troops from Iraq and to dramatically increase aid to Americans still grappling with the devastating aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Several members of Iraq Veterans Against the War, an anti-war organization with members in Colorado Springs, will travel 1,300 miles by van to Mobile, Ala., to begin a march on March 14. The event is slated last five days, ending in New Orleans on March 19 the third anniversary of the start of the Iraq war.

Kelly Dougherty, a local member of Iraq Veterans Against the War who plans to participate in the march, says activists want the Bush administration to rethink its domestic and international priorities.

"Bring the troops home now, and bring the hurricane survivors home," she says.

In the next fiscal year, Bush is seeking more than $72.4 billion to fund operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and other defense initiatives, some associated with the war on terror, according to supplemental White House budget documents. This is in addition to the $50 billion already appropriated for the war on terrorism.

By comparison, Bush is calling for $19.8 billion in disaster relief in the next fiscal year, including Louisiana flood prevention and other programs in need of funds.

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