Just ask 1st Lt. Ehren Watada who’s second court martial is coming up. He’s refused to be deployed to Iraq and made (GASP!) critical statements of Bush and the war.
Watada has acknowledged making public statements criticizing the war and Bush. He has said deploying to Baghdad last year with the 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division would have made him guilty of war crimes by participating in an illegal war.
How DARE he???
He’s being court-martialed for missing movement and for conduct unbecoming an officer. If convicted, Watada could get six years in prison and be dishonorably discharged.
I’m torn over this. On the one hand, joining the military in the USA is pretty much like checking your conscience and free will at the door, and they make that fact well-known. Orders are orders, and orders are to be followed. On the other, if someone wants speak up about what they think is a senseless war (especially those forced to DO the dirty work) and doesn’t want to participate, can we blame them? I am certain that those that have serious qualms with killing in Iraq might be made use of elsewhere. But, it could be argued that once you make an exception for one, many other “conscientious objectors” start popping up and no one wants to go to Iraq.
Which I’m not certain is a bad thing.