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Mojave cross theft shows planning; veterans groups vow to rebuild

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[Editor's note: The original version of this story suggested the Supreme Court ruling overturned the First Amendment prohibition on government endorsement of religion. In fact, it reversed a land transfer injunction.]

The high court’s decision was applauded by the Liberty Counsel, an advocacy group representing VFW and other military service organizations and the American Center for Law and Justice. Opponents, including the ACLU, pledged to keep fighting for the removal of the cross.

"To think anyone can rationalize the desecration of a war memorial is sickening, and for them to believe they won't be apprehended is very naïve,” said Mr. Tradewell, a combat-wounded Vietnam veteran from Sussex, Wis.

The cross’s removal leaves veterans’ groups hunting for clues. Looking at the pictures of the site where the cross once was, VFW chief spokesperson Joe Davis says he is amazed at the serious planning and execution that went into the theft. The cutting of the thick, metal pipes in concrete was a serious undertaking, he says.

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