Monday, July 21, 2008

I Used to Respect Canada

Robin Long became the first U.S. war resister since the Vietnam War forced to leave Canada and turned over to the U.S. military. Even though on June 3rd 2008 Canada's House of Commons voted in favor "to allow conscientious objectors" to "remain in Canada".

Let's add Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper to the long list of bu$h lapdogs.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper may be set on embracing George Bush and his occupation of Iraq, but on Tuesday, June 3, the Canadian members of Parliament extended their embrace to the war resisters. By a vote of 137-110, the House of Commons called on the Canadian government to “immediately implement a program to allow conscientious objectors and their immediate family members… to apply for permanent resident status and remain in Canada.” The motion also called on the government to “immediately cease any removal or deportation actions against such individuals.”

All the opposition parties — Liberal Party, the New Democratic Party, and the Bloc Quebecois — came together to reject the policy of the ruling Conservative Party. The motion, however, is non-binding and the Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper may choose to ignore it.
There are still many "war resisters" trying legally to remain in Canada and stay out of a war they view as unjust. However, with the deportation and jailing of Robin Long it does not look good for these soldiers who wanted to take a legal avenue. I hope his penalty is light.

There is blog up called Courage to Resist. Some of these soldiers have been to Iraq and Afghanistan, some are in Canada, others are awaiting trials in the U.S. They all have one thing in common... they are sick of war, fighting and the military. They are a diverse group; religious reasons, female soldiers who have been threatened, sufferers of PTSD, and others who have been there, seen the inhuman treatment of other human beings.

I hope Long tells every prospective troop who wants to sign up to be sure of what they are getting into. Once they sign the contract, gave their word... it's too late to say, "Oops, my bad."

When I enlisted, I never relized it would end up being the single biggest decision of my entire life. I figured a few years serving during a time of peace, get some college money, get out in good health, I'd be set for life. It does work for some... if it all goes according to plan. To enter during a time of war and expect all things to be rosy is idealistic to say the least.

These soldiers have my utmost respect. Canada not so much.

1 comment:

Anjha said...

It is interesting, SoS, have not heard a thing about this in the corporate media.


Canada used to mean safety. What now?