Refusing to Fight: Canadians Supporting US War Deserters
Canada: A Refuge from Militarism?
January 2014 marks the ten year anniversary since Jeremy Hinzman, US soldier with the 82nd Airborne Division, having deserted his battalion, crossed the border into Canada and sought refuge from a war he could not legally or morally participate in.
In so doing, he became the first modern day US War Resister to seek asylum in Canada.
Brandon Hughey, David Sanders, Joshua Key, Kim Rivera, and ultimately more than two dozen others followed suit. All publicly declared their conscientious opposition to the US war agenda, particularly the conflict in Iraq.
This is not including the more than one hundred who may have crossed over unacknowledged.
Given the unpopularity of the Iraq War, especially in Canada, one would think there would be significant support for these military personnel who sacrificed their careers, their families and their reputations for an unknown future in a foreign country.
However, the experience of today’s war resisters indicates otherwise.
The current Conservative government in Canada seems anything but accommodating of US military deserters, regardless of the questionable legality of the conflicts they were ordered to participate in.