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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2009 :  02:54:39  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Matthis Chiroux refuses to go to Iraq and receives a general discharge. He demanded a hearing rather than taking the easy way out, if I understand correctly.

A video before the hearing.

...at the end of the day I don't feel like I served much of anything except elitist interests....



(edited 4/26 to change the first link and to try to make this post make a little more sense)

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter




Edited by - Gorgo on 04/26/2009 01:55:24

Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2009 :  03:30:14   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
http://ivaw.org/node/3484

Good afternoon. My name is Sgt. Matthis Chiroux, and I served in the Army as a Photojournalist until being honorably discharged last summer after over four years of service in Afghanistan, Japan, Europe and the Phillipines. As an Army journalist whose job it was to collect and filter servicemember's stories, I heard many stomach-churning testimonies of the horrors and crimes taking place in Iraq. For fear of retaliation from the military, I failed to report these crimes, but never again will I allow fear to silence me. Never again will I fail to stand.

In February, I received a letter from the Army ordering my return to active duty, for the purpose of mobilization for Operation Iraqi Freedom. Thanks in great part to the truths of war being fearlessly spoken by my fellow IVAW members, I stand before you today with the strength, clarity and resolve to declare to the military and the world that this Soldier will not be deploying to Iraq.

This occupation is unconstitutional and illegal and I hereby lawfully refuse to participate as I will surely be a party to war crimes. Furthermore, deployment in support of illegal war violates all of my core values as a human being, but in keeping with those values, I choose to remain in the United States to defend myself from charges brought by the Army if they so wish to pursue them. I refuse to participate in the occupation of Iraq.


I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



Edited by - Gorgo on 04/25/2009 03:31:36
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9672 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2009 :  14:35:10   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I applaud his curage!

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2009 :  16:19:53   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
That is courage, and that is defending the Constitution and the rule of law.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



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Valiant Dancer
Forum Goalie

USA
4826 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2009 :  20:04:08   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Valiant Dancer's Homepage Send Valiant Dancer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Gorgo

That is courage, and that is defending the Constitution and the rule of law.


Less so than he may expect.

Courageous, yes.

Ultimately successful, no.

He is disobeying a lawful order to deploy, not an unlawful order to commit a war crime or violate the UCMJ.

I expect a dishonorable discharge and possible jail time from the Court Marshal.

Cthulhu/Asmodeus when you're tired of voting for the lesser of two evils

Brother Cutlass of Reasoned Discussion
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 04/25/2009 :  23:35:30   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I wish the man luck, I really do. In-service war resisters in other wars have had little to show except for any pride they may have in their moral courage. When next the Supreme Court declares a war illegal, and excuses its resisters from discipline, it will be the first time ever.

In 1965 during the Vietnam War, while still a teen-ager and serving on a Navy supply ship, I became strongly opposed to the war. I was hearing about "winning the hearts and minds" of the Vietnamese from President Johnson, but with my own eyes I was seeing wooden crates stenciled "FIRE BOMBS" stacked twenty feet high over acres of ground in Subic Bay, Philippines.

I did not have the "courage" to outright disobey orders. I did write to my ship's Captain that I was pretty sure I would not be able to fire the ship's guns in actual combat, but I did not refuse to work with the gun crews in drills. (Note how I weasel-worded that. I did not directly refuse an order, but made myself appear a doubtful gunner. Not exactly heroic of me, eh?) I was taken off the guns, and put on a lookout watch for General Quarters instead. Of about 250 men, I was the only man aboard my ship who declared an opposition to the war. Once, while standing a nighttime roving security watch, four men from another department came after me with pipes and wrenches. I managed to give them the slip until they gave up. (I did not report the event because, right or wrong, I assumed it had the blessing of officers.)

I filed for Conscientious Objector status, but the Navy never processed my application over my remaining year and a half of active duty. I protested this by going on a water-only diet for ten days. During this fast, I lost only 7 lbs. The Navy decided I was eating on the sly. Several political friends, including both a San Diego Congressman and a City Councilman I'd campaigned for, deserted me. None of the anti-war groups lifted a finger in my defense, though I made many aware of my situation. Nobody except my family even wrote to me.

If a person resists the military from inside, he or she should have no illusions of success, fame, or making a lasting moral impression on anyone or anything. If simply feeling good is sufficient compensation for the hatred, danger, and hardship one is getting into is enough, then fine, do the "right thing." (I exclude the matter of direct refusal to carry out illegal orders from the above. That is every military person's duty come what may, in my opinion.)



Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
Edited by - HalfMooner on 04/25/2009 23:45:30
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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  01:07:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, sorry, I posted the same link twice I see. He received an general discharge. I don't understand the idea of general discharge, or the Army's Individual Ready Reserve.

If I get it, he was in the military long enough that they didn't take his G.I. bill away from him, but they kicked him out of the reserves?

Tuesday was a great victory for me, the entire peace movement and for troops and civilians all over the world. I faced the military for my refusal to deploy to Iraq, and I walked away a free man with a general discharge from the Army's Individual Ready Reserve.

This does not affect my discharge from Active Duty Service, however, which is the term of enlistment from which my G.I. Bill does derive. My benefits are mine, and I will use them to attain education, as all people have the right to do and should not have to fight in any armies to realize.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



Edited by - Gorgo on 04/26/2009 01:32:37
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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  01:24:45   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by HalfMooner

I wish the man luck, I really do. In-service war resisters in other wars have had little to show except for any pride they may have in their moral courage.


Even if you have religion to fall back on as a Conscientious Objector, it's a tough road.

There is no real legal avenue for soldiers to do this, and there ought to be. If you're a Quaker, you still have to support the war in some way by working in a hospital scrubbing floors or something.

I have a small idea how hard it is to resist before you go in, I have no idea how hard it must be to be already in and realize that you can't be a part of it.

Seems like Matthis Chiroux had the support that you didn't have. I'm sorry you were alone.


I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  01:29:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As a result, I was brought into the courthouse, specifically before my probation officer, where I first met Sgt. Whitetree, the man who would put me in the Army. I was threatened with serious prosecution, though the state had no physical evidence against me. I was told I could be looking at 10 to 20 years in “big boy pound you in the ass prison,” as Sgt. Whitetree put it, or I could enlist for a term in the Army.


I also think this is quite a world where people in authority can threaten other people with a corrupt system. Imagine the threat of rape being used against you to force you to go support the killing of innocent people.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  02:00:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Valiant Dancer

Originally posted by Gorgo

That is courage, and that is defending the Constitution and the rule of law.


Less so than he may expect.

Courageous, yes.

Ultimately successful, no.

He is disobeying a lawful order to deploy, not an unlawful order to commit a war crime or violate the UCMJ.

I expect a dishonorable discharge and possible jail time from the Court Marshal.


The war is a criminal act, so the order to attack innocent people in an illegal war is illegal. Soldiers have the duty to disobey illegal orders, although there is no legal avenue to refuse. They can be easily silenced. I fault no one for going along to get along, but that doesn't make it legal.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  02:03:36   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This explains more about refusal in the IRR - http://ivaw.org/irr

Members of the IRR are not under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) until they report for the Army's evaluation for activation. Marines may receive orders during periodic musters, sometimes without prior warning.

Since IRR members are not subject to the UCMJ, the military has no formal jurisdiction to take action against IRR individuals if they do not voluntarily report - and there are no corresponding civilian laws requiring IRR individuals to report.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



Edited by - Gorgo on 04/26/2009 02:05:12
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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  02:43:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It seems the refusers in this war don't even have Canada to fall back on:

http://www.couragetoresist.org/x/content/view/499/89/

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



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Valiant Dancer
Forum Goalie

USA
4826 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  06:38:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Valiant Dancer's Homepage Send Valiant Dancer a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Gorgo

Originally posted by Valiant Dancer

Originally posted by Gorgo

That is courage, and that is defending the Constitution and the rule of law.


Less so than he may expect.

Courageous, yes.

Ultimately successful, no.

He is disobeying a lawful order to deploy, not an unlawful order to commit a war crime or violate the UCMJ.

I expect a dishonorable discharge and possible jail time from the Court Marshal.


The war is a criminal act, so the order to attack innocent people in an illegal war is illegal. Soldiers have the duty to disobey illegal orders, although there is no legal avenue to refuse. They can be easily silenced. I fault no one for going along to get along, but that doesn't make it legal.


And around we go again, Gorgo.

The war has not been declared illegal by any judicial or governmental body to which he reports. While it is your opinion that the war is illegal, that opinion has no weight of law.

He was not ordered to attack innocent people. He was ordered to deploy. The order to deploy was a legal order.

And a general discharge does mean that the military considers you unfit for duty. He refused a legal order and cannot be counted on to obey direct orders. It is an other than honorable discharge. It will mean something down the road. It may impact his job search. Especially if he needs a background check for his chosen profession.

Mooner's own personal example also shows that he did not refuse any legal orders but instead questioned the legality of potential future orders. He did not refuse legal orders to stand guard, conduct readiness drills, or otherwise perform his duty to the best of his ability.


Cthulhu/Asmodeus when you're tired of voting for the lesser of two evils

Brother Cutlass of Reasoned Discussion
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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  07:12:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote


The war has not been declared illegal by any judicial or governmental body to which he reports.


Yes, again, Japan did not declare waterboarding illegal, or attacking Hawaii illegal, so the people who tortured or attacked Hawaii and were punished, did not violate any laws. In fact, there was no Nuremberg or U.N. when they did those things, so they were surely within their rights.

Just because a corrupt system condones corruption, does not mean it is not corrupt. Excusing crimes by using euphemisms like "deploy" is less then helpful.

As Sgt Chiroux stated, he has a duty to defend the Constitution of the U.S.A. The war against the people of Iraq is clearly a violation of international law, and thus, the Constitution of the United States of America.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



Edited by - Gorgo on 04/26/2009 07:15:18
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Gorgo
SFN Die Hard

USA
5310 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  08:03:31   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Gorgo a Private Message  Reply with Quote

And a general discharge does mean that the military considers you unfit for duty. He refused a legal order and cannot be counted on to obey direct orders. It is an other than honorable discharge. It will mean something down the road. It may impact his job search. Especially if he needs a background check for his chosen profession.


Thanks for that clarification. I knew it was different than Honorable Discharge, but wasn't sure what it meant. I gather that it is no different than what would have happened to him if he had just ignored the order, which, evidently many in his position are doing. He wanted the hearing. They did not put him in prison, they fired him and let him keep his benefits from his past service.

I know the rent is in arrears
The dog has not been fed in years
It's even worse than it appears
But it's alright-
Jerry Garcia
Robert Hunter



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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26000 Posts

Posted - 04/26/2009 :  08:47:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Gorgo

This explains more about refusal in the IRR - http://ivaw.org/irr

Members of the IRR are not under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) until they report for the Army's evaluation for activation. Marines may receive orders during periodic musters, sometimes without prior warning.

Since IRR members are not subject to the UCMJ, the military has no formal jurisdiction to take action against IRR individuals if they do not voluntarily report - and there are no corresponding civilian laws requiring IRR individuals to report.
So much for courage, then. Chiroux himself makes it clear that he didn't even have to show up to his hearing:
“Sgt. Chiroux is an honorable man,” said John Adams. “He could have stayed home. He's here. He's a man of honor. He deserves an honorable discharge.”
My bolding.

He basically RSVP'd "no" to an invitation to go on active duty. And for that, they gave him "a general discharge under honorable conditions" instead of an honorable discharge. And Chiroux's reaction is to say that it's okay, people sometimes make mistakes. It all sounds like he knows he's not going to be asked to come to the Spring Tea Social.

Let's save the "courageous" label for people who face significant consequences for their actions, when their alternatives are much safer. Chiroux had to choose between the awful prospect of going to a combat zone, or staying home and maybe get a less-than-honorable discharge, and he chose to stay home. Poor guy.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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