In the age of the internets, with the vast experience of VietNam Veterans and their stories being told and retold a thousand times in every possible way, and everyone (we would imagine) being on the same page about what it means to join the army, It is absolutely staggering that there are people who are still SO STUPID and UNINFORMED about what the military really means:
(CNN) — A U.S. soldier who deserted to Canada will not face persecution if he returns to the United States, Canada’s refugee agency ruled Wednesday.
National Guard Sgt. Corey Glass, 25, says he fled to Toronto in 2006 after serving in Iraq because he did not want to fight in a war he did not support.
“What I saw in Iraq convinced me that the war is illegal and immoral. I could not in good conscience continue to take part in it,” Glass said Wednesday. “I don’t think it’s fair that I should be punished for doing what I felt morally obligated to do.”
Glass, who’s still on active duty and is considered absent without leave, applied for refugee status at the Canadian border in August 2006 on the grounds of objection to military service.
But Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board denied his application for refugee status Wednesday, prompting the Canadian Border Services Agency to issue a June 12 deportation order.
The agency says it evaluates each case on its own merits to determine whether the applicant faces a “well-founded fear” of persecution or cruel and unusual punishment if he returns to his home country.
“All refugee claimants have a right to due process,” said Danielle Norris, a spokeswoman for Customs and Immigrations Canada. “When they have exhausted all legal avenues, we expect them to respect our laws and leave the country.”
Glass, of Fairmont, Indiana, says he joined the National Guard believing that he would be deployed only if the United States faced occupation. After he returned from his first tour of duty, he said, he tried to leave the Army but was told that desertion was punishable by death.
Penalties for desertion range from a demotion in rank to a maximum penalty of death, depending on the circumstances, said Maj. Nathan Banks, an Army spokesman.
“The first thing we try to do is rehabilitate and retrain the soldier to see if we can keep him,” he said. “Remember, we’re at war, so everybody counts. When you decide to desert, you let everybody down.”
Banks said that it is up to the deserter’s commanding officer to decide on an appropriate punishment if the soldier refuses to return.
Members of War Resisters Support Campaign in Canada, which is providing transitional support to Glass and at least 13 other deserters in Canada, are holding out for a political avenue of appeal through the Canadian House of Commons.
In December, the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration adopted a motion calling on the Canadian government to initiate a residency program for conscientious objectors who have left military service “related to a war not sanctioned by the United Nations.”
The motion has yet to receive approval from the entire House of Commons.
Norris says the agency has received about 40 applications for refugee claims from U.S. deserters since the Iraq war began in 2003. Of the claims that have been addressed in public, only five have made it to the country’s Federal Court of Appeals, a venue of last resort.
All five appeals were rejected, according to Norris.
The high court has yet to rule on its sixth challenge of this kind from Army combat engineer Joshua Key, who fled to Saskatchewan with his wife and four children in 2005.
“This has been our home for three years now. It’s a lot like the U.S., and it’s as close to the U.S. as you can be,” said Key, who served on the front lines in Falluja before he returned to the United States in 2002.
Key said that fleeing to Canada was a difficult but obvious choice when faced with returning to Iraq.
“There was nothing but violence and innocent civilians dying in our hands for no justification,” Key said. “We became the terrorists.”
First of all, when you are going to desert, know where you are going to go, and be sure your host country is not on the side of your enemy:
“Dodging the draft will be more difficult than those from the Vietnam era remember. College and Canada will not be options. In December 2001, Canada and the US signed a ?Smart Border Declaration,? which could be used to keep would-be draft dodgers in. Signed by Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, John Manley, and US Homeland Security Director, Gov. Tom Ridge, the declaration involves a 30-point plan which implements, among other things, a ?pre-clearance agreement? of people entering and departing each country. Reforms aimed at making the draft more equitable along gender and class lines also eliminates higher education as a shelter. Underclassmen would only be able to postpone service until the end of their cur-rent semester. Seniors would have until the end of the academic year.* [….]
Had this numbskull done his homework (or read BLOGDIAL), not only would he never had joined the ‘National Guard’, but had he done so, he would know better than to go AWOL and then TURN HIMSELF IN.
Once again, a simple search of the Google will turn up the fact that many Draft Dodgers WENT INTO HIDING in Canada; in other words, they just dropped off the face of the earth. The border between Canada and the usa is extremely porous; there is no reason to go through a border and declare that you are AWOL. How dumb can you BE?
And while we are at it, oh for the days of the old Canada, a country with some backbone….its own backbone:
Trudeau opens the door to draft dodgers
Broadcast Date: March 25, 1969
At the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., Prime Minister Trudeau fields questions on the subject of draft evaders. He characterizes them as good, orderly students who have aroused the sympathies of many Canadians. The dodgers have been coming across the Canadian border as landed immigrants. Others pretend they are visiting the country as tourists and do not follow the formal channels of immigration.
- Immigration and Citizenship Canada estimates that between 30,000 and 40,000 draft dodgers and deserters were admitted into Canada over the course of the conflict.
- Following a serious debate, Prime Minister Trudeau extended his open door policy to military deserters. It is estimated that roughly 1,000 deserters took sanctuary in Canada.
And there you have it.
Corey Glass is an idiot. He is a perfect example of the cause of all our problems; he is a poorly educated, half witted drone without a shred of common sense, but with a vote in the idiocracy. He cant even go AWOL and do it right. No wonder america is being so easily dismantled; if these are the sorts of people who are the future, then all is truly lost. Even if his type are not the majority, there are enough of them in the population to cause total havoc across the entire world.
This is the problem we face.
Let this be a lesson to all those moral people who genuinely signed up to protect and serve their country, and who find themselves unable to obey immoral orders and who want to find a way out.
The countries which have neither diplomatic relations nor extradition treaties with the U.S. are: Bhutan, Iran, North Korea, and Taiwan (which the United States does not consider a country under the One-China policy).
Don’t play by the rules and expect to be treated correctly. When you go AWOL, all bets are off, and you are going underground for the duration.
Forget Canada. And if you INSIST on going there, be prepared to go completely underground, enter by foot, and be ready to live like a hunted fugitive.
And for those of you who say that this man is honorable, and by making his stand in this way he is brining attention to the problems of the illegal Iraq occupation, you are completely wrong.
The protest methods of the 20th century no longer work. Turning yourself in and making a martyr of yourself is just stupid; people are so brainwashed today that they turn on martyrs and truth tellers with chants of “tase him! tase him!”.
The problem with these people is that they are too quick to obey. They think that there are rules, somewhere, and that there is justice somewhere. There IS no justice, there ARE no rules, especially at this level, and now that you have been on ‘the CNN’ Mr. Glass, you are going to be treated to the most unimaginable cruelty at the hands of your government. But I digress.
There is nothing honorable about what this man is doing. It would have been far better for him and the cause of ending the american empire gracefully if he had secreted himself into Canada unnoticed, and then began an ‘AWOL Soldiers Blog’, telling the world of his fugitive adventures in Canada, his Iraq horror stories, the horror stories of other soldiers and other juicy pieces of writing. But that would take some intelligence, something clearly missing in this case.
What this man’s witless actions do is undermine the efforts to dismantle the war machine; it telegraphs to all soldiers with grave doubts and thoughts of escape that, “there is no escape for you. We will hunt you down and prosecute you to the full extent of the law.” Imagine the message that would have been sent, had he done it correctly. His influence would have been global. He would have been a real hero.
Now I feel pity for him.