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Brian Willson
Born July 1941 (age 82)
Residence Portland, Oregon, US
Known for War Resistance
#166 - Beyond "The Axis of Evil" (Clarifying the History of US Intervention in Korea) #166 - Beyond "The Axis of Evil"
    (Clarifying the History of US Intervention in Korea)

A veteran of the Vietnam war, Brian Willson recounts his moving story in episode 166. Radicalized by his Vietnam war experience of assessing the effectiveness of the genocidal policy of bombing villages, he quickly asked awkward questions about why these bombings were being carried out, and was expelled from the army, and studied to be a lawyer. He was admitted to the bar, but found the strict courtroom procedures reminded him of his blind obedience in going to Vietnam and so he found himself unable to work as a lawyer. After reading a lot of the real history of US interventions abroad, a series of Vietnam flashbacks in 1981 launched him onto a path as a politically active radical war resister.

In 1987 he blocked train tracks at the Concord, California Naval Weapons Station to try to stop a train of US weapons being shipped to Central America. Aware of this, the FBI instructed the train drivers not to stop, suggesting that they would be in danger if they did so. As well as skull injuries, Brian Willson lost both his legs, but this was not successful in blunting his resolve to oppose war and militarism in all its forms.

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