Komboa: Anti-Vietnam Warrior

Lorenzo “Komboa” Ervin is a thirty year old ex-GI now serving life in Marion maximum security jail for hijacking a plane as a protest against US involvement in Vietnam.

In the early ‘sixties, soon after joining up, he and other young black GIs serving in Mannheim, West Germany, secretly formed Black GIs United to fight racism in the army, and became involved in anti-Vietnam war activities, taking part in demonstrations with West German students. Later, as whole units of GIs in France and West Germany were sent to Vietnam, Black GIs United responded by calling on soldiers to desert. The consequent harassment suffered by Komboa and his friends came to a head when Komboa was himself drafted to Vietnam and decided to go AWOL instead.