By HANNAH WOLFE

Ten members of Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), along with five non-veteran supporters, pleaded not guilty to charges of disorderly conduct and failure to obey a lawful order in a court appearance on November 10.

A member of the Iraq Veterans Against the war assists veteran Nick Morgan after he was trampled by a police horse during a protest outside the final presidential debate in Hempstead, New York. Photo: IVAW
A member of the Iraq Veterans Against the war assists veteran Nick Morgan after he was trampled by a police horse during a protest outside the final presidential debate in Hempstead, New York. Photo: IVAW

The soldiers, all of whom have served in the U.S. military since September 11, 2001, were arrested while protesting the final presidential debate in Long island, New York. the protest was organized by the IVAW to demand that presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama address veterans’ issues during their campaigns.

When several veterans tried to enter the debate to ask questions of the candidates, police on horseback trampled protesters. IVAW member Nick Morgan was seriously injured when a horse stepped on his head. None of the officers are facing any charges or disciplinary action. The IVAW wants the United States to begin immediately withdrawing troops from Iraq and pay the Iraqi people money to help them repair their country. The vets are also demanding full benefits and health care for all veterans. Since the war started in 2003, 4,200 U.S. soldiers and more than one million Iraqis have been killed.