Mary Patierno and I produced “Vieques: Worth Every Bit of Struggle,” a documentary that spotlights a group of people who were the David to the U.S. military’s Goliath.
Vieques is a tiny island a couple miles to the east of Puerto Rico. For decades, the U.S. military owned two-thirds of the island, using one-third of it for target practice. Everything from machine guns to bombs shot from jets and ships pummeled the island just a few miles from where civilians lives.
Viequenses were scared that an errant missile would kill civilians – and that did happen. They also became sick with cancer at a higher rate than residents of the mainland Puerto Rico, because of the heavy metals from exploded bombs poisoning the agricultural fields and waters.
There is so much to this story that for the poster, I chose the image that best captured the grassroots movement, adding a often repeated chant as a sub headline (Yes to Vieques, No to the Military.)