one year ago, u.s. war resister takes sanctuary in vancouver

One year ago today, US Iraq War resister Rodney Watson, deported from Canada by the Harper Government, accepted an offer of sanctuary from the First United Church of Vancouver.

Watson served in Iraq and completed his full three-year contarct. Then the US military ordered him to return - involuntarily - through the conscription program known as stop-loss. After witnessing the war crimes and the racism of the US occupation of Iraq, Rodney knew he could no longer participate, and came to Canada.

When his appeals to stay were exhausted, the Harper government ordered Watson deported. Reverend Ric Matthews and the congregation of the First United Church in Vancouver wanted to give Rodney - and Canada - another chance.

We are on the cusp of an historic opportunity to affirm Rodney's sacrifice. Bill C-440, the private member's bill that would allow US war resisters to apply for permanent residency in Canada, will continue second reading at the end of this month. We'll be asking for your help to ensure that it passes. Be ready!


allan said...

Everyone who says "but but but they should honour their contracts" should say the exact same thing about the US military -- and demand that Watson be allowed to resume his life as a civilian.

Boyd M L Reimer said...

This anniversary is one of great honour for some, and great shame for others.

Great honour to Rodney Watson, and all who support his determined heroic stand to save Nuremberg Principle IV. (which was originally backed by the US in 1945)

Great shame to all those who have shown contempt for the hard-won Nuremberg Principle IV.

Great shame to the Conservative Party of Canada for twice showing contempt for democracy by not following the recommendation of a majority of the elected representatives of Canada.

Great shame to the Supreme Court of Canada for refusing to re-hear the case of Jeremy Hinzman, when a lower court directly contradicted Nuremberg Principle IV.

Lest We Forget the horrors of World War II. For background info click here.

Cornelia said...

Very impressive. Let him stay, let them stay!