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A DESERTER, NOT A “DISSENTER”

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By Michelle Malkin  •  June 7, 2006 01:45 PM

***scroll for updates…Watada support website registered by moonbat vet/Cindy Sheehan groupie Jeff Paterson of Not In Our Name…more below…***

deserter.jpg
1st Lt. Ehren Watada: The face of a deserter

The Seattle Times heralds the moonbat left’s new hero:

In a rare case of officer dissent, a Fort Lewis Army lieutenant has refused orders to head out to Iraq this month to lead troops in what he believes is an illegal war of occupation.

“Dissent?!” He’s defying his orders.

1st Lt. Ehren Watada’s Stryker brigade is scheduled to make its first deployment to Iraq this month. His refusal to accompany these troops puts him at risk of court-martial and years of prison time.

“I feel that we have been lied to and betrayed by this administration,” Watada said Tuesday in a telephone interview from Fort Lewis. “It is the duty, the obligation of every soldier, and specifically the officers, to evaluate the legality, the truth behind every order — including the order to go to war.”

In making his decision, Watada has reached out to peace groups, including clergy, students, some veterans opposed to Iraq and others. Some war critics are raising money for his legal defense as they seek to galvanize broader opposition to Bush administration policy in Iraq.

“There has been an outpouring of support in the Puget Sound area,” said David Solnit, who works with the anti-war group Courage to Resist. The group and others are helping organize a press conference today in Tacoma to launch the support campaign.

A military reader e-mails:

This guy graduated from college and then joined the Army, going to Officer Candidate school, AFTER we had already started the Iraq campaign just to claim it was an “illegal” war when his unit is called to go. Smells funny to me. In my mind either the Army gave a commission to an idiot not aware of current events or he planned this all along.

And another retired military reader adds:

I don’t think that this lieutenant knows how much trouble he could be in.

First, he stated, “It is the duty, the obligation of every soldier, and specifically the officers, to evaluate the legality, the truth behind every order — including the order to go to war.” This is wrong It is not the duty of every soldier to evaluate the legality of every order. It is the duty of every soldier is to follow all LAWFUL orders.

It sounds as if he has been planning this. If it can be proven that he is doing this to encourage other soldiers to do this, he would be guilty of formenting a mutiny – a capital offense. This is Article 94 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice:

ART. 94. MUTINY OR SEDITION
(a) Any person subject to this chapter who–

(1) with intent to usurp or override lawful military authority, refuses, in concert with any other person, to obey orders or otherwise do his duty or creates any violence or disturbance is guilty of mutiny;

(2) with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of lawful civil authority, creates, in concert with any other person, revolt, violence, or disturbance against that authority is guilty of sedition;

(3) fails to do his utmost to prevent and suppress a mutiny or sedition being committed in his presence, or fails to take all reasonable means to inform his superior commissioned officer or commanding officer of a mutiny or sedition which he knows or has reason to believe is taking place, is guilty of a failure to suppress or report a mutiny or sedition.

(b) A person who is found guilty of attempted mutiny, mutiny, sedition, or failure to suppress or report a mutiny or sedition shall be punished by death or such other punishment as a court- martial may direct.

Steven Burt
1LT, FA, USAR (ret)

Milblogger Bubblehead adds:

Expect the evening news tomorrow night to be filled with stories of a “brave” Army Lieutenant. The actions he’ll be lauded for don’t fit the traditional definition of bravery, but you’ll see pundits far and wide hailing his actions. Here’s what he’ll be celebrated for: refusing to deploy with his unit to Iraq.

1st Lt. Ehren K. Watada says, through his lawyer, that he cannot “participate in a war that he cannot justify or support legally and morally”. Many of us have probably thought about what we’d do if given what we felt was an illegal order — we all got training when we first came into the military that we weren’t obligated to follow such an order. I always figured I’d explain to the person who gave me the order why I felt it was illegal, and then take it up the chain of command if that was available. If worse came to worse, I’d probably get my Congressman involved. One action I wouldn’t take, though, was holding a “coordinated news conference”. His parents apparently support his decision; his father is fairly well-known in Hawaiian political circles.

Watada claims that the current war is illegal. Interestingly, he joined the Army in June 2003, after we had invaded Iraq (so the concept that he might have to go there shouldn’t have come as a surprise to him); his obligation ends in December of this year. I’m interested to know where he gets the idea that our current occupation of Iraq is illegal; not only has Congress supported the continued action through appropriations, the United Nations Security Council specifically authorized (unanimously) the current coalition military operations in Iraq.

Kim at Wizbang has extensive coverage:

This is more than just one man refusing to deploy. It’s a coordinated effort by the anti-war left to undermine our troops, our war effort, and President Bush, and Lt. Watada is its pawn.

More on the media circus from the Army Times. And John Stephenson.

Here’s left-wing Alternet extolling Watada’s “courage.”

Watada’s website crashed earlier today. Here’s what’s posted there now from his donation-seeking supporters:

Our primary website is currently offline.
We are working very hard to bring it back.

June 7, 2006
FAMILY & FRIENDS OF LT.
www.ThankYouLt.org

Press Advisory

FIRST U.S. MILITARY COMMISSIONED OFFICER TO REFUSE DEPLOYMENT TO UNLAWFUL IRAQ WAR TODAY

Today U.S. Army First Lieutenant Ehren Watada will become the first commissioned officer to refuse deployment to the unlawful Iraq war and occupation. The lieutenant will announce the intention to disobey the illegal order to deploy to Iraq in coordinated press conferences in Tacoma, Washington and Honolulu, Hawaii. Veterans, religious leaders, military families, students, faculty, peace and justice organizations and community members will announce a national public campaign of support for the Lieutenant.

12:00pm, Wednesday, June 7th
Associated Ministries
1224 South I Street
Tacoma, Washington
(at the intersection of 12th & I)

11:00am, Wednesday, June 7th
Hawaii State Capitol
Senate Conference Room 224
Honolulu, Hawii

DONATE to Lt. Watada’s Legal Defense Fund

KOMO TV Seattle coverage.

KHNL coverage – interview with Watada’s father, Bob, a Vietnam War protester who supports his son.

Nathan Goulding at The Media Blog has more on Bob Watada–a Bush Derangement Syndrome sufferer:

I decided to find out if Lt. Watada or his father have had any associations with anti-war groups or anti-war movements. After a short time on Google, this turned up—a posting on a forum at the University of Hawaii:

During the past year, [Bob Watada] confided to me his opposition to the War in Iraq.

He likened Bush Two to be equal to Adolf Hitler.

Although I don’t have any strong feelings about the subject, I generally side with the national political establishment.

In recent years, I’ve been mildly criticizing the truth about how Europe began conquering the Planet starting in the 15th Century.

Of course, America’s empire is just an extension of Europe’s exploits.

When I was just out of high school, Robert taught me frosh college economics at Kapiolani Community College on Pensacola Street.

This appears to have been posted by someone named Mike G. H. Chun. Sadly, it seems you can’t trust anyone these days. If Mr. Watada’s Bush/Hitler sentiments are accurate, this could help illuminate why he’s so proud of his son for opposing the war.

***

Update (via Kristinn T): Military families speak out…

MILITARY FAMILIES REBUKE ARMY LT. WATADA FOR REFUSAL TO SERVE AND ALLIANCE WITH ANTI-AMERICAN GROUPS

(Washington) Rebecca Davis, Cofounder of Military Families Voice of
Victory (www.mfvov.org), issued the following statement today on the
announced plans by Army 1st Lt. Ehren Watada to disobey orders to serve
in Iraq:

“On behalf of the members of Military Families Voice of Victory, and as
a mother of three sons who have served honorably in Iraq and
Afghanistan, I am demanding the Army prosecute Lt. Watada to the fullest
extent under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

“The refusal by Lt. Watada to obey lawful orders to serve in Iraq as
part of Operation Iraqi Freedom will surely encourage al Qaeda in Iraq
to continue terrorizing the Iraqi people and attacking U.S. and
coalition forces, and encourage al Qaeda and allied terrorist forces
around the globe to wage war against America and Western civilization.

“Lt. Watada has chosen to ally himself and accept financial aid from Not
in Our Name, a front group for the Revolutionary Communist Party. He has
also accepted aid from other anti-American organizations that have
expressed support and/or given material aid to terrorists in Iraq.

“Lt. Watada is not standing on principle, nor is his stand valiant. He
is a coward and a traitor. His actions will only serve to get his fellow
soldiers killed so that he can save himself and become famous.”

-30-

***

Update: Here is some registration information concerning the proprietor of the Watada support website…

Domain ID:D123530763-LROR
Domain Name:THANKYOULT.ORG
Created On:31-May-2006 18:02:32 UTC
Last Updated On:31-May-2006 18:30:39 UTC
Expiration Date:31-May-2007 18:02:32 UTC
Sponsoring Registrar:Nettuner Corp. dba Webmasters.com (R1310-LROR)
Status:CLIENT UPDATE PROHIBITED
Status:TRANSFER PROHIBITED
Registrant ID:WM06053189dd
Registrant Name:Jeff Paterson
Registrant Organization:Not in Our Name

Paterson is a “a former Kane’ohe Bay Marine who refused to board a transport in 1990 heading to the Gulf War and now works as an anti-war activist with the organization Not In Our Name.”

Dan Riehl has more on moonbat papa Bob Watada.

John Donovan
:

Note that Watada is not seeking conscientious objector status, because he does not oppose all wars, only this particular one.

Which puts Lieutenant Watada on the horns of a dilemma.

Let us assume that Lieutenant Watada is sincere. We owe him that much.

If so, he is taking the high road. His sole defense of his actions is going to be “Refusing an illegal order.” Absent a *stunning* action on the part of a Courts Martial panel, he’s going to get convicted. His defense team is going to have to be miracle workers to successfully assert that the war in Iraq is illegal in terms by which it will excuse his actions – and, by extension, condemn every other serving officer as a war criminal for not having refused. Oh, there’s room to maneuver in there, but when you strip it down to the essentials – that’s it.

***

Previous:

Pablo Paredes – convicted for refusing to deploymore
Where in the world is Wassef Ali Hassoun?
Jeremy Hinzman: AWOL and AINO
Jeremy spoke in Canada todayLoser of the day
Deserter Kevin Benderman

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