By Bob Meola, Courage to Resist. September 28, 2012
"Courage to Resist helped me in many ways...and just altogether being excellent. Thanks from the bottom of my heart for everything!"
I recently interviewed Army War Resister, Skyler James. Skyler joined the army in October, 2006. Her experience in the army facing harassment and a death threat for being an open lesbian and hearing soldiers brag about the inhuman and criminal things they did in Iraq and then being told she would be deployed to Afghanistan, even though she should have been discharged for being gay, until the time she went AWOL in October, 2007, about a year after joining it and her experience living in Canada seeking refugee status and hoping not to be deported, can be read at Skyler James resists war, anti-gay harassment and in our recent book, About Face, Military Resisters Turn Against War. That story left off in August of 2008. This is an update on War Resister, Skyler James in her own words.
By Courage to Resist. September 20, 2012
US war resister Kimberly Rivera was deported this morning from Canada and is currently under arrest by the US military. She is expected to face prosecution--and up to five years in a US military brig--at Fort Carson, Colorado. Courage to Resist is in contact with Kimberly's US-based civilian attorney. We're committed to assisting the Rivera family in any way possible. We'll be posting additional information soon.
Courage to Resist staged a vigil at the San Francisco Canadian consulate September 18, 2012 (photo above) in a last-ditch effort to convince Canada to do the right thing.
Courage to Resist is preparing to do everything possible to support Kimberly and her family if deported. Check resisters.ca for updates!
By Alexandra Posadzki, The Canadian Press. August 31, 2012
TORONTO - An American soldier who fled to Canada after she became disillusioned with the Iraq war is weighing her legal options after a ruling that would have her deported to the U.S.
"My biggest fear is being separated from my children and having to sit in a prison for politically being against the war in Iraq," Kimberly Rivera told a news conference Friday.
Rivera was joined by a number of groups, including the War Resisters Support Campaign, Amnesty International and the Canadian Labour Congress, who urged Immigration Minister Jason Kenney to let Rivera, her husband and their four children stay in Canada.
By Jeff Paterson, Courage to Resist. August 31, 2012
An Arabic translator, Joshua Casteel deployed to Iraq with the 202nd Military Intelligence Battalion in 2004. He served as an prisoner interrogator at the now-infamous Abu Ghraib prison from June 2004 to January 2005. During his deployment, Joshua told his command about his intention to apply for a conscientious objector discharge. His command at Abu Ghraib assigned him to the "non-combat" role of working at the massive and toxic burn pit. Into this burn pit went plastic, rubber, body parts and other medical waste, and all manner of other garbage. It burned 24/7. After his return stateside, Joshua was eventually honorably discharged as a conscientious objector in May 2005. Joshua was diagnosed less than a year ago with stage IV lung cancer. This cancer was already present in his liver, spine and adrenals. He died in New York City a few days ago on August 25, 2012. He was 32 years old. Joshua believed that the cancer was a direct result of his burn pit duty, yet he explained, "I have a certain sense of relief that I get to share in the sufferings of the Iraqis. We were conducting those burn pits in agricultural fields.... Americans are gaining awareness of the impacts of burn pits on soldiers, but not the impact they will have on Iraqi civilians." Joshua's courage to resist was unsurpassed.
August 17, 2012. By the Bradley Manning Support Network.
Six veterans and activists in Oakland, and six more in Portland, were arrested yesterday night at Obama 2012 campaign offices for occupying the spaces in solidarity with accused WikiLeaks whistle-blower PFC Bradley Manning. Dozens of veterans and anti-war demonstrators coordinated a West Coast set of actions that also included protests in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Seattle.
Among the approximately 100 Oakland protesters was Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen, who participated in the sit-in and explained, “We occupied the President’s campaign office to raise awareness about the injustices Bradley Manning has endured. Bradley has sacrificed for us, doing what was right despite potentially spending the rest of his life in jail.”
Protesters delivered a letter to campaign staff members, which they requested be sent to President Obama at the main campaign headquarters in Chicago. The letter makes its demands clear: that President Obama pardon PFC Bradley Manning, accounting for both his abusive treatment in a Quantico prison cell and the president’s own unlawfully prejudicial remarks that Bradley “broke the law.”
By Tod Ensign, Citizen Soldier. August 15, 2012
E/4 Catalino "Papo" Rodriguez, 30, from Aberdeen, MD surrendered at the Vietnam Memorial on Wednesday, August 8th to dramatize the need for adequate mental health care and disability payments for thousands of Iraq and Afghan war veterans, including himself.
By the Bradley Manning Support Network. August 13, 2012
This document not only reveals new details about Bradley’s brutal conditions at the Quantico Marine Brig in Virginia, but also the shocking revelation that a three-star General, far removed from the brig, ordered this illegal treatment. Two different brig commanders then carried out these unlawful orders in clear violation of Article 13 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) which prohibits pre-trial confinement conditions “any more rigorous” than the minimum needed to ensure the accused appears for court hearings. Mr. Coombs will argue this motion for dismissal of all charges, based on these military law violations at a critical October 1-5 pre-trial hearing at Fort Meade, Maryland.
Thousands of Courage to Resist supporters are currently receiving our new tri-annual newsletter, August 2012, in their postal mailboxes across the United States. If you didn't get your copy, please view, print, and share the PDF version. We produce and distribute these 4-page newsletters every four months to provide a quick overview of our efforts on behalf of our donors and other supporters. This edition includes features on Bradley Manning, Sgt. Brook Lindsey ("AWOL to get PTSD help"), The Clearing Barrel GI coffeehouse in Germany, Brad McCall's return from Canada, Peace Flags over Berkeley for International Conscientious Objectors Day, and Rodney Watson ("US war resister in sanctuary of church").
If you appreciate our efforts, please make a donation today.
By Courage to Resist. July 14, 2012
Army PFC Bradley Manning is accused of releasing to the public tens of thousands of documents containing proof of war crimes, government corruption, and corporate influence on foreign policy, via the WikiLeaks website. For his courage, he is facing life plus 150 years in prison.
Bradley’s next public pre-trial hearings at Fort Meade, Maryland, are scheduled for July 16-20th and August 27-31st. Yet as Bradley’s court martial approaches, it has become apparent to observers that he will not get a fair trial by the US military court.
These are the reasons why justice demands that the charges be dropped, and Bradley be released now:
By Bob Meola, Courage to Resist. July 8, 2012
Join us in helping Rodney with his monthly food and phone expenses. Please donate via our friends at vancouverwarresisters.org with a one-time or monthly PayPal contribution.
War Resister Rodney Watson wishes he could be with his parents and other family and friends in his home town of Kansas City, Missouri. He’d like to see his wife and four year old son more than just on weekends in Vancouver, B.C. too. He’d also like to take his young family home to the United States and have his wife and his son meet his parents. But he can’t. Rodney has been living in the sanctuary of United Church in Vancouver since September 18, 2009. He eats and sleeps there and still cannot leave the Church without the risk of being deported back to the United States and to a military brig. After a tour of Iraq, in which he witnessed the senseless brutality of the war and the same racism toward the Iraqi people by U.S. enlisted soldiers and American contractors that he knew so well from experiencing it as an African-American, growing up in the United States, Rodney was stop-lossed.
By Keegan Hamilton, Seattle Weekly. June 27, 2012
Courage to Resist is currently working with Seattle area supporters of Sgt. Lindsey in order to best channel support. More information forthcoming.
An Iraq War veteran stationed at Ft. Lewis says struggles with PTSD and a lack of responsiveness to his condition by Army doctors forced him to go AWOL.
The soldier, 26-year-old Sgt. Brook Thomas Lindsey, met with members of the media on Friday at Coffee Strong, a non-profit organization, headquartered across the street from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, that advocates for military mental health treatment reform. Lindsey recounted why he decided to leave the base without permission on March 26.
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