With today's government shutdown came mandatory closings of the country's national parks, museums, and memorials. The Mall—that enormous green space that cuts through D.C.—was completely barricaded off. Which didn't stop a group of octogenarian WWII vets from reportedly "knocking over" barriers and getting inside their memorial, located in between the Lincoln Memorial and the Capitol. And now they're staying there. Many of the vets are in wheelchairs, pushed by sons or daughters. Others are wearing their military insignia. It's so, so badass.
Now, there's a little bit of confusion about what's going on at the memorial. Apparently the police are keeping it open and a few congressmen are on the scene. So this could all be a PR stunt by one of the dueling political parties—or the vets could have won the right to stay on the Mall. (D.C. is a heartless place right now, but the fuck is going to kick out these guys?) Follow Stars and Stripes reporter Leo Shane, who promises any further updates.