Canada deports U.S. army deserter
— U.S. army deserter Robin Long was quietly deported from Canada Tuesday
morning, while protesters unaware of his whereabouts picketed the Canada-U.S.
border crossing south of Vancouver.
“I can confirm that the removal took
place but the Privacy Act prevents any discussion of the specifics of the
case,” Shakila Manzoor, a spokesperson for the Canada Border Services
Agency, said today in an interview.
She declined to say at what time he was sent back, where he crossed the
border or who received him.
A small group of supporters gathered early Tuesday morning at the Peace
Arch border crossing, about an hour south of downtown Vancouver, for a
symbolic protest against the deportation.
“This is about international human rights,” Sarah Bjorknas, coordinator of
the Vancouver War Resisters Support Campaign, said in an interview.
“Why do we want to wait until people commit war crimes and then prosecute
them instead of providing sanctuary for those who say this is what is happening,
and we don't want it to happen and refuse to participate in it,” she said.
“That's a backward way of running anything, to say we cannot stop atrocities, we
would rather wait until it happens and then prosecute people for it.”
Ms. Bjorknas said the support group would like to ensure that Mr. Long is the
last deserter to be sent back to the U.S.
“These are people who are clearly intent on not allowing this to happen
again,” she said. “They will be calling on the [federal] government and the
[Canada Border Services Agency] to account for what has happened.”
“The majority of elected officials in the country and the majority of
Canadians who have been polled over and over again support a safe haven for war
resisters. For the government to say nothing, do nothing shows a lack of
morals,” she said.
Ms. Bjorknas also said Mr. Long should have been given more time to exhaust
Mr. Long would most likely be returned to military control on the base from
where he fled, Lt. Col George Wright, acting deputy director for U.S. Army
Public Affairs, said in an interview from Washington, D.C.
Mr. Long would be confined to the base and advised of his rights to due
process, including his right to a lawyer. Disciplinary actions would be at the
discretion of his commander, who has a wide range of administrative,
non-judicial and judicial options from counselling to dishonourable discharge
and a prison sentence.
Desertion in the army is not as huge a problem as it has been portrayed by
some organizations that assist soldiers who have deserted, Lt. Col Wright stated
in an e-mail sent earlier to The Globe and Mail.
Less than one per cent of U.S. troops desert and most soldiers desert as a
result of personal, family or financial problems, he said. Historically more
than 80 per cent have served fewer than 36 months, he said.
Desertion continues to primarily affect our most junior troops, with
approximately 76 per cent of the 4,698 deserters in 2007 being first-term
soldiers, according to a preliminary review, Lt. Col. Wright said.
Madam Justice Anne Mactavish of the Federal Court of Canada cleared the way
for Mr. Long's deportation late Monday, dismissing a last-ditch attempt to delay
the process while the 25-year-old pursued further appeals.
Mr. Long, who fled to Ontario in 2005, had signed up to join the U.S. Army in
July, 2003. Though he initially felt his country's war in Iraq was justified, he
became troubled by his experience and said he wouldn't participate in what he
believed were war crimes, his lawyer said.
Commentary by the Ottawa Mens Centre in the Globe and Mail
Canadian Judges make political not legal decisions. Harper's republican
puppet government makes it quite clear that it's all the way with George W. Bush
in just the same way as Australia famously went all the way with L.B.J. and so
started the beginning of the end of that government.
Ottawa Mens Centre.com, from Ottawa, Canada) wrote:
Congratulations Robin Long you made a stand. Its a lot harder to make a decision
of conscience that goes 'against the political flow". How could all those
American's be wrong? You might as well ask "how could all those Germans have
been wrong during WW2. How could all those Nazi Judges have made all those
politically correct decisions to send all those politically incorrect , the
wrong religion off to concentration camps? Who stood up for their rights prior
Sending Mr. Long back to the USA is an indication that Canada is effectively
another state of the USA and subservient to American dictates. That has a very
bad odour of rotting "values" where Canadian Citizenship means little if a judge
decides to make a political decision and deport you. Khadr was deported on an
American whim on dubious evidence that was "politically interpreted" and a legal
decision made to do indirectly what Harper's government knew was wrong directly.
Again, Border services quietly picked up Mr. Long and no doubt it was on Harpers
spoken or unspoken clear instructions from those who know exactly what the goals
of the government of the day are.
Canada's judiciary is increasingly taking on the role of a puppet court that
makes political decisions. Take Canada's "war on men" which means Canada has a
policy of "male gender apartheid. Any father who seeks to enforce his child's
right to a relationship with him now runs a very real risk of being effectively
DEPORTED! even if he is a Canadian citizen. Dead Beat Family Court Judges in
Ontario do it by issuing "Life time restraining orders" that ban fathers from
complete cities, provinces and by "orders for costs" and "vexatious litigant
orders" made to enforce orders for child support for which the income did not
exist, mean Canadian fathers face repeated endless periods of incarceration or
voluntary deportation. Its happening every day. Canada is a country where the
Rule of Law has no meaning except for the purposes of political abuse using
judges willing to prostitute their values for political purposes by flagrantly
abusing their judicial powers for political purposes. www.OttawaMensCentre.com
The Americans at the time made a political decision "not to become involved" and
made it difficult for Jews to enter the United States.
American foreign policy conscientious objector.
Conscientious Objectors need medals of recognition, not condemnation by the far
right rednecks. Conscientious Objectors have something rare, "a conscience",
they use their powers of logical reasoning to decide a moral dilemma and at
least they had the courage to make the decision to consider their obligation to
society and humanity not to do as their government ordered. They are true heroes
to be respected. I sincerely hope that Robin Long one day earns the recognition
for his courage he has displayed. Shame Harper Shame. www.OttawaMensCentre.com
American Conscientious objectors be advised that our puppet republican
prime minister does NOT speak for all Canadians. Harper does not stand for the
rule of law or respect for the fact that Canada has a responsibility to
Canadians and the world to support anyone who conscientiously objects to their
countries participation in war crimes.
The fact that George Bush fabricated evidence to invade Iraq is something that
many Canadians are ashamed of Harpers directions to boot out conscientious
If you are a conscientious objector, you will find a great many Canadians
willing to assist you. If you are smart, you will defer any application for
official recognition in Canada until we have a change in government. There is no
point in being a sacrificial lamb. Just wait till we get rid of our puppet
republican prime minister who rubber stamps any outragious act of our war
mongering neigbours. www.OttawaMensCentre.com
- Posted 16/07/08 at 12:09 AM EDT
Yep, Globe shut down the Kadhr story! WHY? The Globe regularly shut down
extremely early any story that might bring them political flack. Its nice to
see that this story is still open. Conscientious objectors deserve the
greatest respect equal to that of war heroes, they are heroes of peace,
heroes for speaking out when no one else had the courage to do so. They are
a similar category to those who helped Jews escape Nazi persecution and who
also risked their political careers to do so.
Now, Canada ships these heroes of peace back to our war mongering George W.
Bush who thinks nothing of fabricating evidence to justify invasions for his
corporate buddies engage in a wide variety of well known corporate economic
missions that have nothing to do with any war on terror.
- Posted 16/07/08 at 12:51 AM EDT