Vigils and delegations visited eight Canadian consulates across the United States January 25, 2008 to ask that the U.S. war resisters by allowed to stay in Canada. Veterans, community organizers, and others gathered in Washington DC, New York City, San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, Dallas, Philadelphia, and Minneapolis to support the troops who have refused to fight.
Demonstrators say, "Let War Resisters Stay"
If you have not already done so, please sign the letter, "Dear Canada: Let U.S. War Resisters Stay" today. Although we delivered thousands of petitions and letters to Canadian Consulates across the country on January 25, we'll still mail this letter on your behalf via USPS International First Class mail.
Photos, reports, and audio from around the country.
Soldiers in 2nd Platoon, Charlie 1-26 stage a 'mutiny' that pulls the unit apart
By Kelly Kennedy, Army Times. December 16, 2007
Spc. Gerry DeNardi stood at the on-base Burger King, just a few miles from downtown Baghdad, hoping for a quick taste of home.
Camp Taji encompasses miles of scrapped Iraqi tanks, a busy U.S. airstrip and thousands of soldiers living in row upon row of identical trailers. Several fast-food stands, a PX and a dining facility the size of a football field compose Taji's social hub. The base had been struck by an occasional mortar round, and a rocket had hit the airfield two weeks before and killed an American helicopter pilot.
By Madeline Chambers, Reuters. December 17, 2007
BERLIN (Reuters) - A U.S. Army medic jailed for desertion after refusing to return to Iraq is on a mission to tell young Americans about the grim realities of war before they join the military.
By Courage to Resist. December 11, 2007
On December 6, the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration of the House of Commons in Ottawa, Canada adopted a motion that was a critical victory for U.S. Iraq War resisters seeking sanctuary.
Courage to Resist organizers Lori Hurlebaus and Jeff Paterson traveled to Ottawa for this hearing, along with supporters and resisters from across Canada, and have contributed to this report. In collaboration with the Toronto, Canada-based War Resisters Support Campaign (WRSC), Courage to Resist is calling for U.S.-Canada consulate delegations, vigils, and actions on January 25-26 to build momentum in the wake of this important first victory.
By Courage to Resist. November 18, 2007
Courage to Resist presents our new audio interview project. In launching this new feature, we bring you the voices of: Nathan Burden, currently AWOL, talks about his disillusionment with the Army; Brad McCall and Ryan Johnson, share their experiences that led them to seek sanctuary in Canada from the Iraq War. Listen to their stories here: www.couragetoresist.org/audio
By Courage to Resist. November 18, 2007
While home on leave in January 2007, Army Spc Kimberly Rivera made the life changing decision that she would not be returning to the Iraq War. Instead, she packed up the family car and drove to Canada with her husband and two children. She is currently one of about fifty AWOL US war resisters who are openly seeking sanctuary in Canada. This is her story.
Also now available, Courage to Resist audio interview with Kimberly. December 4, 2007
On the weekend of 13-15 March, 2008 Iraq Veterans Against the War will assemble history's largest gathering of US veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as Iraqi and Afghan survivors. In Washington DC they will testify to their first hand experiences and reveal the truth of occupation. They are currently seeking many types of support to make this happen, and are requesting that Iraq and Afghan veterans submit testimony and evidence.
By William Kates, Associated Press. November 14, 2007
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — A soldier who served two combat tours in Iraq was arrested Wednesday for leaving the Army without permission more than a year ago to seek treatment for post traumatic stress disorder.
At a news conference hours before his arrest, Sgt. Brad Gaskins said he left the base in August 2006 because the Army wasn't providing effective treatment after he was diagnosed with PTSD and severe depression."They just don't have the resources to handle it, but that's not my fault," Gaskins said.
Tod Ensign, an attorney with Citizen Soldier, a GI rights group that is representing Gaskins, said the case is part of a "coming tsunami" of mental health problems involving Iraq and Afghanistan vets.
Courage to Resist. November 9, 2007
In Seattle, Washington, Courage to Resist member Sara Rich, mother of Army Spc. Suzanne Swift, and her son marched with a banner urging support for war resisters. Our friend Gerry Condon of Project Safe Haven was seen helping with the large “Stop the Illegal and Unjust War in Iraq—Support Lt. Watada’s Courage to Resist” nearby.
In San Francisco, California, Courage to Resist organizers marched with Veterans for Peace, the Watada Support Committee, and many other military-related organizations calling for an immediate end to the U.S. occupation of Iraq.
Federal judge bars Army retrial of officer who refused Iraq War
By Jeff Paterson, Courage to Resist. November 11, 2007
Civilian federal Judge Benjamin Settle blocked the Army’s plans for a second court-martial of prominent Iraq War military resister First Lieutenant Ehren Watada. Judge Settle’s preliminary ruling last Thursday found that a retrial would violate Lt. Watada’s Fifth Amendment protections against being tried for the same crime twice—known as double jeopardy.
Ruling by Judge Benjamin Settle (PDF). November 8, 2007
Update November 3, 2007: The Army has begun a very official “unofficial” investigation of out-spoken Iraq veteran Eli Wright, an active duty soldier at Fort Drum, New York. Apparently the story below prompted right-wing bloggers to press the military to take action against Eli—for either the actions described, or simply talking about them. The military might take action to keep “search and avoid” missions from again becoming an “open secret”—as during the Vietnam War. We’ll keep you posted on developments, including possible action alerts if needed.
Ill-Equipped Soldiers Opt for 'Search and Avoid'
Iraq war veterans now stationed at a base here say that morale among US soldiers in the country is so poor, many are simply parking their Humvees and pretending to be on patrol, a practice dubbed "search and avoid" missions.
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