Please write a letter today in support of this objector's early release
Update April 19, 2013: War resister Justin Colby transferred to Fort Lewis, south of Seattle, to serve nine month prison sentence. Write him directly at: COLBY, Justin / 1450 Alder Rd. / Box 339536 / Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA 98433-9536
By SPC Justin Colby, US Army. March 22, 2013
Justin wrote this statement a few hours before being sent away for 9 months to a military prison. Justin had lived in Canada in order to refuse a second Iraq deployment, and to better care for his family. See below for how to help Justin now.
My name is Justin Colby and I am an Active Duty soldier serving in the United States Army. I am writing today to talk about some of my experiences serving in the US Army. I admit that there were many positive experiences about my serving the Army (and I have a great deal of respect and appreciation for many of those that I served with), but for the purposes of this writing I will focus on the negative experiences that shaped my ability to participate in this organization.
By Bob Meola, Courage to Resist. March 15, 2013
"We treated them like dog shit. We’d roll into a village and the guys would throw water bottles at the kids. We’d do home incursions. It was like police harassment in L.A. that I’d seen growing up. We were foreign cops in another people’s country."
Jules Tindungan (photo right) is a U.S. War Resister living in Toronto, Ontario. He joined the Army in 2005. Jules comes from a military family. His grandfather was from the Philippines and served in World War II and was present at the Bataan death march. An after effect of his service was U.S. citizenship for his family. Many other family members served in the military. Jules’ brother is currently deployed in Afghanistan. Numerous uncles and cousins are also current members of the U.S. military.
We're proud to share our April 2013 print newsletter (PDF). This tri-annual newsletter highlights Bradley Manning's historic statement taking credit for exposing war crimes and government corruption, "Bradley Manning in his own words," as well as updates on war resisters Kimberly Rivera and Jules Tindungan. Kimberly facing prison at an upcoming April 29 hearing for having sought refugee status in Canada with her family. Meanwhile Jules won a Canadian court decision recently that allows him to stay in Canada--for now.
Last Friday we mailed thousands of copies to friends and supporters around the world, but you can also view, print, and share it here. We publish our newsletter every four months so folks have a quick overview of our recent work. It's the next best thing to regularly checking in with us via our website and/or our Facebook page.
By Army PFC Bradley Manning. Read to Judge Denise Lind, Fort Meade courtroom, February 28, 2013. Transcript by the Bradley Manning Support Network--including Courage to Resist members.
"I believed that if the general public, especially the American public, had access to the information... it could spark a domestic debate on the role of the military and our foreign policy in general as it related to Iraq and Afghanistan." - Bradley Manning
I wrote this statement in confinement, so… The following facts are provided in support of the providence inquiry for my court martial, United States v. Pfc. Bradley E. Manning.
I am a 25-year old Private First Class in the United States Army currently assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, HHC, US Army Garrison—USAG, Joint Base Myer, Henderson Hall, Fort Meyer, Virginia. Prior to this assignment, I was assigned to HHC, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, New York. My primary military occupational specialty or PMOS is 35 fox-trot: intelligence analyst. I entered active duty status on 2 October 2007. I enlisted with the hope of obtaining both real-world experience and earning benefits under the GI Bill for college opportunities.
Refugee Protection Division ignored evidence that US military justice system fails to meet basic fairness standards
By the War Resisters Support Campaign (Canada). February 4, 2013
TORONTO, ONTARIO - On Friday, February 1, the Federal Court of Canada released a decision granting United Stated (US) war resister Jules Tindungan a new hearing before the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). The Court found errors in the original IRB decision pertaining to issues which are at the heart of asylum claims by US soldiers in Canada.
Mr. Tindungan is one of dozens of former US soldiers who have sought asylum in Canada because of their objection to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Tindungan refused to return to combat for the United States military in 2008 after serving a 15 month combat tour and seeing first-hand the breaches of the Geneva Conventions committed by US forces.
Mr. Tindungan argued before the Refugee Board that he faces differential punishment in the US because he has spoken out publicly against US military actions in Iraq and Afghanistan. He also argued that he would not get a fair trial if returned because the US court-martial system is not an independent and impartial tribunal as required under Canadian and International law.
Recent rulings in Bradley’s pre-trial hearings–Trial delayed until June
By the Bradley Manning Support Network. January 23, 2013.
Bradley Manning, a 25-year-old Army intelligence analyst, is accused of releasing the Collateral Murder video, which shows the killing of unarmed civilians and two Reuters journalists by a US Apache helicopter crew in Iraq. He is also accused of sharing the Afghan War Diary, the Iraq War Logs, and series of embarrassing US diplomatic cables. These documents were published by the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks, and they have illuminated such issues as the true number and cause of civilian casualties in Iraq, along with a number of human rights abuses by U.S.-funded contractors and foreign militaries, and the role that spying and bribes play in international diplomacy. He has twice been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for his heroic and noble actions. For over 960 days he has been imprisoned without trial, 11 months of which were spent in solitary confinement at Quantico prison, where his treatment has since been judged to have amounted to unlawful pretrial punishment.
Saluting Bradley Manning
In the San Francisco Bay Area, please join us in saluting Bradley Manning on Thursday, January 31, 2013, 7:30 pm, at the First Congregational Church of Berkeley, 2345 Channing Way, Berkeley. Presented by KPFA Radio and Courage to Resist, this benefit for KPFA and the Bradley Manning Defense Fund (hosted by Courage to Resist in collaboration with the Bradley Manning Support Network) features Daniel & Patricia Ellsberg & Kevin Gosztol.
$12 advance tickets at Brown Paper Tickets, or at: Pegasus Books (3 locations), Marcus Books, Mrs. Dalloway’s, Moe’s Books, Walden Pond, DIESEL, A Bookstore, Modern Times. $15 tickets may be available at the door.
January 18, 2013
Iraq veteran and subject of the Academy Award-nominated documentary "Poster Girl" Robynn Murray's brief message in support of U.S. Iraq War resisters in Canada. Courage to Resist currently hosts the Rivera Family Support Fund for Kimberly Rivera and her family. Kimberly appears in this video on the right. Since this video was filmed, she was deported to the U.S., and now faces prison at an upcoming court martial.
Kimberly Rivera currently awaits court martial at Fort Carson, Colorado, for seeking refuge in Canada while objecting to the Iraq War. Her husband and four children live in Texas. We need to make sure the kids have Christmas presents, and a roof over their heads this winter!
Please consider a tax-deductible contribution to the Rivera Family Support Fund:
By Mario Rivera, husband of war resister Kimberly Rivera. Interviewed by Bob Meola, Courage to Resist. December 21, 2012
The donations from the fund established by Courage to Resist let me and the four children visit Kimberly last month. We were able to stay at a motel on Fort Carson. It allowed the kids to visit their mother--even if it was just for a short week.
Any new donations would allow us to keep up with the basics--food and shelter and the water bill and gas and electric. They would allow us also, hopefully, to get some Christmas presents for the kids.
David Coombs, defense attorney in the WikiLeaks-related case, US. v. Bradley Manning, gave his first public presentation to an audience of over a hundred people at All Souls Church in Washington DC, on December 4, 2012. Additional speakers included Emma Cape and Kevin Zeese of the Bradley Manning Support Network, Michael Ratner of the Center for Constitutional Rights, Jesselyn Radack of the Government Accountability Project, and Marsha Coleman-Adebayo of the National Whistleblower Center. Mr. Coombs specifically noted the ongoing support of Courage to Resist in his efforts to defend Bradley.
Why, what it means (and doesn't), and what next
By Jeff Paterson, Courage to Resist. November 19, 2012. Published at Allvoices.com
Army Private Bradley Manning recently informed the military court that he was, in fact, the source of information published by WikiLeaks. While the 24 year old Intelligence Analyst, effectively, took responsibility for transferring classified documents, in violation of military regulations, he maintained that he was not guilty of all 22 charges against him.
“PFC Manning has offered to plead guilty to various offenses through a process known as "pleading by exceptions and substitutions," explained Manning civilian defense attorney David Coombs on his blog. Manning is “attempting to accept responsibility for offenses that are encapsulated within, or are a subset of, the charged offenses…. PFC Manning is not pleading guilty to the specifications as charged by the government,” added Coombs. Nor is he “submitting a plea as part of an agreement or deal with the government.”
"Pleading by exceptions and substitutions" is very rare--so rare that most observers of the proceedings were thoroughly confused. Some media outlets incorrectly reported that Manning was “seeking a deal”, “pleading guilty”, or trying to nullify a life sentence--or even the death penalty. It’s important to clarify that no deal is being sought, Manning no longer faces the death penalty, and his plea doesn’t prohibit the maximum sentence of life in prison. Manning’s plea confused many, simply because the truth isn’t usually offered up in such proceedings without something in return. But that is what happened.
Please help Courage to Resist support the troops that refuse to fight with your urgently needed tax-deductible donation today. Donate today.