Courage to Resist. February 5, 2007.

Lcpl Ivan Brobeck, Iraq combat veteran and war resister, was released from a military brig at Quantico in Virginia, three months after returning to the United States from Canada with a letter to President Bush asking him to “Bring the Troops Home Now” !

During a tour of duty in Iraq in 2004 Brobeck witnessed regular instances of abuse of Iraqi detainees and the killing of Iraqi civilians at military checkpoints. He chose Canada over a second tour in a war that he came to see as illegal and contrary to the interests and moral standards of most Americans.

“I was not willing to go back and fight a war that I did not believe was right, and I didn’t want to put myself in a situation where I would possibly kill an innocent civilian,” Brobeck explains. “Please, President Bush, do what is right; do everything you can to bring our troops home from Iraq.”

Ivan Brobeck surrendered to military authorities in Washington, DC on election day, November 2006. He was transferred to Quantico in Virginia where he faced court martial for his courageous actions. He returned in the same spirit that motivated him to enlist at age 17 – a desire to serve his country and to stand for what is right. On December 5, Ivan Brobeck plead guilty to “Unauthorized Absence” and “Missing Movement” at his court martial at Quantico in Virginia and was sentneced to 8 months in a military brig, forfeiture of 2/3 pay and a bad conduct discharge. Due to a pre-trial agreement Ivan was required to serve two months of that sentence with the remaining time suspended.

Lisa Brobeck, Ivan’s wife, said after Ivan’s sentencing,” The United States Marine Corps has been diligent in resolving this matter quickly, in order for Ivan to be released in time for the birth of his son. Ivan has been treated fairly, within the confines of the UCMJ but, there is a bigger picture here that is overlooked when focusing on an individual circumstance. The American public has been lied to and bullied by an  administration with little regard for the welfare of the servicemen and women who put their lives on the line everyday. I ask that the American public demand an end to this war and then demand answers from the very government that started it.

Congratulations to Lisa and Ivan Brobeck on the birth of their son , Nolan Ivan Brobeck, born in Canada just after Ivan’s release on February 10, 2007, but Ivan must remain in the United States as he waits for the Marine Corp to officially discharge him. He cannot return to Canada without this necessary documentation. He also continues to fight for a discharge upgrade from his “bad conduct” discharge. Ivan had this message for his supporters, ” I want to thank everyone for their support of me, especially those who sent me letters while I was imprisoned. It was helpful to receive the words of encouragement and support”