July 26, 2007 UpdateAfter nearly seven months in Fort Sill, Oklahoma military brig, Iraq War veteran turned GI resister Army Spc. Mark Wilkerson is finally free! Prior to sentencing, Mark explained, “I could not [again] deploy to a foreign land with a weapon in my hand, representing my government. I am not willing to kill, or be killed for my government. When I enlisted in the Army, I thought I would be able to, but after Iraq, my beliefs became such that I could no longer participate.”
Only days after being released, Mark has already begun working with Iraq Veterans Against the War. He is looking forward to attending the upcoming Veterans for Peace national convention next month in St. Louis where he will be joining the Courage to Resist panel discussion on GI resistance in the military today.
Commentary by Jeff Paterson, Courage to Resist. February 14, 2007
Also from Courage to Resist:
"It’s a belief of the soldiers I’ve talked to that any troop increase over here, it’s just going to be more sitting ducks, more targets," said Sgt. Ronn Cantu in a "Democracy Now!" interview the day following the announced troop escalation.
Sgt. Cantu, 28, is a member of the First Cavalry Division stationed in Iraq and a member of Iraq Veterans Against the War . He is currently on his second tour in Iraq and recently signed the "Appeal for Redress" a petition to Congress calling for the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq. The appeal, currently signed by over 1,000 active duty troops, will be delivered to Congress on January 16. Sgt. Cantu also started a forum called Soldier Voices to provide a place for other soldiers to speak about the Iraq war.
January 3, 2007-Supporters of Spc. Suzanne Swift rallied outside Fort Lewis, Washington this morning to welcome the news that Swift had been released from military prison. Photos: Suzanne Swift released from the brig, supporters rally outside Ft. Lewis
US Army Interrogator Sgt. Ricky Clousing returned home to Washington State on December 23, 2006 after three months in a military prison. After his release, Clousing travelled to nearby Raleigh for a reception with local human rights supporters at the Raleigh Friends Meeting House.
An Iraq combat veteran, the 24-year-old Army interrogator from Seattle outlined his opposition to a "war of aggression" that has "no legal basis to be fought" at a August 11, 2006 press conference during the national Veterans for Peace convention. Photos: Iraq combat vet Sgt. Ricky Clousing speaks out against illegal war
“In Iraq I operated as an interrogator and was attached to tactical infantry units during daily patrol operations. As an interrogator I spoke to Iraqis each day. This gave me an idea of what local civilians thought of coalition forces. Throughout my training very appropriate guidelines for the treatment of prisoners were set. However, I witnessed our baseless incarceration of civilians. I saw civilians physically harassed. I saw an innocent Iraqi killed before me by US troops. I saw the abuse of power that goes without accountability. Being attached to a tactical infantry unit and being exposed to the brutalities of war, I began to doubt and reconsider my beliefs.” - Sgt. Ricky Clousing
"It is important that Ivan receive mail everyday , so he is constantly reminded that he is not alone during this time in the brig and that he is supported in his brave and courageous stand." said Lisa Brobeck, Ivan's wife. Write Letters of Support:
Lcpl Ivan S. Brobeck
The first G.I. Coffehouse, of the current Iraq war, is planning to open its doors to servicemembers and their guests on October 27, 2006 in Watertown, New York.
For more information, and a full schedule of events, visit: www.DifferentDrummerCafe.org
" First United Methodist Church of Tacoma has declared itself a sanctuary for servicemen and servicewomen who don't want to go to Iraq." by Mike Barber, Seattle Post-Intelligencer. June 15, 2005
On March 12, 2006 Fernando Suarez del Solar , Pablo Paredes , Camilo Mejia and Aidan Delgado led a coalition of the willing across a 241 mile quest for peace aimed at raising Latino voice of opposition to the War in Iraq! Photos and report: 241 mile California March for Peace
To mobilize and publicize resistance within the Latino community to the war in Iraq, Fernando Suarez de Solar, the father of U.S. Marine Jesus Alberto Suarez de Solar, led a historic peace march from Tijuana to San Francisco, from March 12-March 27.
“…if there's anything I could be guilty of, it is my beliefs. I am guilty of believing this war is illegal. I'm guilty of believing war in all forms is immoral and useless, and I am guilty of believing that as a service member I have a duty to refuse to participate in this war because it is illegal."
We urge you to join us in a National GI Resistance Alert Network!
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