15. Juni 2008

Canada is refusing refuge

I found an interesting article about the support of US friendly governments in the "War on Terror" on the site of a German online news portal.

John Horvath writes for example in his text:

Meanwhile, in Canada the government has undertaken measures to prevent army deserters from entering the country and even returning those who are already in back to the US, where they face stiff penalties for their actions. Traditionally, Canada has served as a safe haven for Americans who valued a duty to their conscience above that of their commander-in-chief. During the Vietnam War, about 100,000 Americans sought refuge in Canada (it should be noted that two-thirds of those who fought in Vietnam were volunteers). Of those, approximately 30,000 ended up staying and living in Canada.

Some might argue that the difference between then and now is that economic conditions are much tougher, and that Canada would be unable to accommodate such an influx. Yet the present economic situation in Canada isn't as bad as in the US. More importantly, there is a vast difference in the numbers between then and now. Presently there are about 200 American deserters in Canada and of these only about 50 or so are asking for refugee status.

Still, as far as the Canadian government is concerned these people aren't welcome, and attempts are now on the way to have them expelled and sent back to the US. In fact, the first American soldier to be deported back to the US is set to take place this week. Corey Glass, who sought asylum in August 2006 after serving in the Iraq War, is scheduled to be sent back on June 12.

...

Although it's true that those from the American military seeking refuge in Canada should have known what they were getting into when they joined the military, some point out that many of these people feel they have been tricked and lied to. In fact some, such as Glass, had signed up for the National Guard feeling that they would be doing humanitarian work and that they would only see military action if the country was attacked by a foreign army (this is the ultimate meaning of the term National Guard). Thus, many feel they had been duped, for they expected to be bagging sand and saving lives during a hurricane or flood and not in Iraq taking part in an illegal war.

Although the article also has a weird part about how "many of them (soldiers) actually went to Iraq as they were supposed to do and served honorably* for at least one tour of duty", I recommend you to read the whole text dealing also with moral and legal aspects here.


* I simply do not understand what could be honorable in fulfilling the "duty" of oppressing and killing people...

Just in case you neither click on the soldier above nor read the comment: Have a look at the site where I found the picture below:
www.resisters.ca (English and French!)

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