Monday, May 09, 2005

Pablo Paredes and Kevin Benderman

From an e-mail that went out to those who've signed up at Dahr Jamail's Iraq Dispatches:

The following was written by Fernando Suarez, who lost his son in Iraq. His appeal is followed by some links you can click to take further action to support the cause.

To all media outlets
To all who love peace and justice
To the citizens of the United States
To the entire world
Pablo Paredes and Kevin Benderman will be subjected to a court martial for having opposed Bush's criminal war in Iraq.
Both applied for conscientious objector status and were denied. Both are accused of disobeying orders among other charges.
In San Diego and at Fort Stewart, Georgia, both will be tried in proceedings that without a doubt will mirror the absurd theater in which Camilo Mejia was pronounced guilty by a military tribunal that sentenced him to a year in prison.
Beginning tomorrow, May 11, we will see similar trials in which justice will be conspicuously absent, in which the power of the state will impose its will over international law, and in which young men will be sentenced and shipped to military prisons.
But all of this can be avoided if the international peace community
comes to the defense of these two brave human beings and brave soliders.
Why brave soldiers? Because they understand their duty as members of the military to defend the Constitution of the United States, to defend democracy and freedom, and they understand that the war in Iraq has nothing to do with these hallowed values. Why courageous human beings? Because by refusing to take part in war crimes they risk their personal safety and their careers.
These war crimes have been perpetrated in Irak by a president who has brought only economic hardship to families in the United States and death and destruction to the people of Iraq.
These young men are the spokesmen for thousands of soldiers who have deserted and we must give them our total support. I invite you to participate in a day of international resistence, to sign petitions of solidarity, and to demonstrate against these courts martial, against the illegal occupation of Iraq, and for the immediate return of our troops.
More than 1600 U.S. soldiers have died already and more than 100,000 innocent Iraqis have perished including thousands of children. Thousandsof children are now orphans in both nations.
Now is the time to overcome our fear and to protest and demand an end to Bush's historic crimes.

*COME* to National City (south of San Diego)
Join the struggle of
*PABLO PAREDES*, a US sailor who refused to be a cog in the war machine.
*FERNANDO SUAREZ DEL SOLAR*,* father of one of the first U.S. servicemen killed in Iraq : "Thank you, my son. Thank you for your courageous stand, for your brave act of love and respect for human life, and above all thank you for being an example of strength and patriotism for the young people of your generation....The true soldier defends the Constitution, life, liberty, and democracy, and does not exterminate a foreign land for economic gain."

"The actions that Pablo Paredes is taking are honorable and impressive, and merit the support of people who are committed to peace, justice, and the rule of law -- not force -- in world affairs. It is no exaggeration to say that the possibilities for decent human survival depend on that commitment. I hope that others will be inspired by Pablo's courageous actions, and will not only lend him their support, but will find their own ways to work for the same ends."
*HOWARD ZINN: * "Your refusal to participate in a war which is contrary to international law and which violates basic standards of moral behaviour is to be commended and admired. Your act is in keeping with a long tradition in our country -- from the Boston Tea Party, to the refusal to accept the Fugitive Slave Acts, to the civil disobedience of Martin Luther king -- of following your conscience rather than blindly obeying orders. Democracy requires citizens who will think for themselves and insist that the government uphold the principles it is supposed to stand for."
*RON KOVIC*, author:_ Born on the 4th of July_*: *
"I want to send my support and admiration to Pablo Paredes for his courageous opposition to the war in Iraq...he is an inspiration to all of us! I want to encourage everyone to stand with Pablo and other brave war resisters who are finding the courage withinside themselves to begin saying what really needs to be said!...what they are now doing, at great personal risk, is an extremely courageous act of citizenship that every American should be proud of!"*

*On-going Events in National City/San Diego Tuesday-Friday THIS WEEK!*
*Camilo Mejia*
*Fernando Suarez del Solar*
*Naomi Klein*
*Blase Bonpane*
*Aidan Delgado*
*Marjorie Cohn*
*Cindy Sheehan*
are among those who will come to San Diego in support of War Resister Pablo Paredes/_.*

*Voices of Resistance*
*Tuesday, May 10 2005
7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Aswan Hall
401 Mile of Cars Way
National City, CA
*Pablo Paredes, Camilo Mejia and Aidan Delgado, three outspoken war resisters, will share their personal expereinces and motivations in seeking Conscientious Objector status and renouncing the war.
Join us on this "National Day of Action for GI Resisters" in a show of overwhelming support on the day before the US military brings sailor Pablo Paredes (San Diego, CA) and soldier Kevin Benderman (Ft. Stewart, GA) before military court martial tribunals for their opposition to the Iraq War.
Directions to Aswan Hall:
401 Mile-of-Cars Way (aka 24th St.)
National City (free parking)
Take I-5 to Mile-of-Cars Way.
Exit EAST.
LEFT at 1st intersection (Hoover Ave.)
LEFT into the first driveway.
*For Additional Events and other info: * **
*or San Diego Military Counseling Project

Que dios les bendiga.
Fam. Suarez del Solar.
Jesus Alberto Suarez del Solar Navarro Lance Corporal USMC1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division

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