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Can A Volunteer Be A Conscientious Objector?

From the Fayetteville Observer:

Jeremy Hinzman said he could barely stomach chanting "kill we will" during basic training and, as a Quaker, he didn't want to shoot anybody. But it was the thought of serving U.S. interests in Iraq that made the 82nd Airborne Division specialist flee to Canada last month.

"I would have felt no different than a private in the German Army during World War II," he said by phone from Toronto, where he is seeking refugee status.

Hinzman, 25, who was a member of the 2nd Battalion of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, is subject to prosecution as a deserter if he is caught within U.S. borders.

His name will go on a national database that law enforcement officers can access, said Sgt. Pam Smith, a spokeswoman for the 82nd Airborne. He can be arrested, but the Army won't go looking for him, she said.

"We don't have time to go and track down people who go AWOL," she said. "We're fighting a war."

Hinzman, who grew up in Rapid City, S.D., joined the Army in January 2001. The socialist structure of the military appealed to him, he said. He liked the subsidized housing and groceries and, at the end of his service, the money for college.

"It seemed like a good financial decision," he said. And, he said, "I had a romantic vision of what the Army was."

Somehow he failed to remember that one of a soldiers jobs is to kill the enemy.

He's not likely to get refugee status. According to Canada's Immigration and Refugee Board, none of the 268 American applicants last year was accepted.

Update: Sgt. Mom has a note that this guy should have read before he hitched up.


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Comments (7)

"It seemed like a good f... (Below threshold)

"It seemed like a good financial decision," he said. And, he said, "I had a romantic vision of what the Army was."

No, Jeremy, you had a stupid, ignorant vision of what the Army was.

Does he not know any other Quakers who might be a little older and wiser? Did they not take him aside and tell him, "Hey, the military's mission is to kill people and break things. Instead, you might want to try getting an on-campus job, and a Pell grant and maybe some student loans."

This is precisely what <a h... (Below threshold)
Jalal Abu Jarhead:

This is precisely what Sgt Mom was talking about last week. What do these people believe the military actually does?

And he's in the Parachute Infantry, fer Crissakes! Talk about unclear on the concept!

He made the decision, he sh... (Below threshold)

He made the decision, he should stand by it.

If he likes the socialist s... (Below threshold)
jen:

If he likes the socialist structure of the military, then he will now enjoy the socialist structure of Canada.

I hope he tries to return to the US unscathed. And I hope he gets prosecuted to the fullest extent that the law allows.

I... um... er...Wo... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

I... um... er...

Words fail me.

If caught, Hinzman should be forced to repay every single penny he was paid while on active duty. He should be stripped of all rank, benefits, and pensions. And then he should be shot at dawn -- not only for desertion and fraud, but out of simple Darwinian eugenics. Anyone this incredibly clueless and greedy can NOT be allowed to reproduce.

Obviously he will not be shot. But while in prison, I certainly hope he will share his "romantic vision" of the socialist structure of the penal system, with it's free housing and groceries, with his fellow inmates. Loudly. Perhaps while squealing like a pig.

J.

Full pardon compliments of ... (Below threshold)
Greyhawk:

Full pardon compliments of President Kerry next January.

The military still has on i... (Below threshold)
James Ackerson:

The military still has on its books, the order by which a deserter is to be handled during war time situations. that process it to be formally detained and stripped of rank to buck private, held in a detention center without pay, informed of rights by legal counsel and told that a "summery execution" is allowed under war time events, that the court marshal hearing is set for such & such date, and then left to think about the consequences of such actions taken.

If the arresting officer implies that the detainee was attempting to effect an "escape" during transport, the military laws allow for an on-the-spot summery execution should it be deemed necessary by the commanding officer on duty (you tell me which is cheaper, a 10 cent bullet or a long drawn out court marshal) so I believe that unless the individual is to be used as military PR for future references should any other military personnel deem it worthy to try and desert there post during war time or post time efforts, It would be more effective to "indicate" intent to the deserter should they ever cross the boarder back into the United States.

Personally when I was in the service, if you where to attempt to desert and I caught you, I would not hesitate to place a bullet between your eyes or in the back of your head (your choice) as a summery execution is preferable to having to court marshal you (unless I had been given a set of restrictive orders that say otherwise).

The military is a very focused machine designed to exact offensive efforts in the most effective manner, it is not a place for PC minded people, it is not a place for people who have doubts about there rights under military authority, and it most definitely is not for someone who is cannot "suspend" there constitutional rights during there service to America "for" Americans.

I could say what I would do to the deserter, but it would be pointless, I think we need to tighten down on the reigns of our troops and make sure they understand that the military is NOT for people who are enable to do as "told" without question as to question during a campaign, is to cause your buddy to become dead (if not yourself as well).

Read the fine print people, it will save you trouble in the long run.




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