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US Soldier Reveals Why Aaron Bushnell Self-Immolated

One week after Aaron Bushnell set himself on fire in an extreme act of Protest for Palestine – the world has been awe-struck by his galvanizing act of courage, with his last words being Free Palestine. Across the world, including in Yemen and Gaza, Bushnell is being memorialized as a martyr for Palestine as Israel continues its genocide in Gaza that has left over 30,000 people dead.

His protest was not only moving but stood in stark contrast to the empty rhetoric given by so-called liberal politicians who’ve done very little to stop Israel from continuing its war on civilians. Bushnell was horrified not only by Israel’s actions but also by his own air force. It was recently revealed that Bushnell had classified information about the U.S. Air Force aiding Israel in bombing Gaza.

Yet media searches of Bushnell’s name produce headlines and articles framing his protest as a mental health issue, inferring that he may have been suicidal. YouTube even includes “suicide hotline” messages under videos discussing Bushnell.

So, who was Aaron Bushnell, and how was his extreme act of protest actually in line with a long history of active military servicemembers who had a conscious awakening during their service, including in the Vietnam War era? To talk more about this, we are joined by Mike Prysner, a former Iraq war veteran turned antiwar activist and organizer. Prysner is also a producer and journalist with the Empire Files. He openly calls on military members to refuse to serve in the U.S. military and draws attention to the global class war.

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