Unbeknownst to him and his legion of supporters, Glass, 25, was actually discharged from the U.S. Army shortly after he went AWOL in 2006.
Glass and about 40 other American deserters who like him sought refugee status have prompted a national debate in Canada that last month reached the floor of Parliament on where to draw the line between cowardice and conscience.
"I had absolutely no idea that I had been discharged," said Glass when ABC News informed him of his status. "This is insane. This is so weird. There are no warrants? No one is looking for me?"
According to U.S. Army documents and officials Glass was discharged from the California National Guard on Dec. 1, 2006, four months after he arrived in Canada and six months after he failed to show up to a required muster.
Army Major Nathan Banks is quoted stating the US military does not consider Glass AWOL or a deserter, there are no charges against him, he is out of the military.
The development (similar developments happened during Vietnam) comes as polls show huge support in Canada for US war resisters. From Jason Buckland's "Don't turf Iraq war deserters, poll says" (Toronto Sun):
Three in five Canadians favour giving U.S. soldiers resisting the Iraq War a chance to stay in Canada as permanent residents, a new poll said yesterday.
Results from the nation-wide Angus Reid survey showed 64% of Canadians support war objectors seeking refuge north of the border.
"I think Canadians were opposed to the Iraq War from the start," said Lee Zaslofsky, national co-ordinator for the War Resister Support Campaign (WRSC).
"The fact that it has dragged on so long -- is in shambles, really -- I think Canadians understand why someone would want to stop fighting for that kind of cause in that kind of place."
The news today includes a shocker for many reporters. Ebony Horton, whom we called out in May, and others quick to swallow, should damn well pay attention. Sarah Childress (Newsweek) reports, "The number of active-duty soldiers who deserted the Army last year is higher than previously reported -- at 3,301, the military said last week. (The Army said the original figure was tallied incorrectly.) Deserters are branded after abandoning their posts without permission for 30 days. The tally is hardly at Vietnam War levels, but it's still significant for an all-volunteer military."
As Rebecca noted Friday, we are discussing how to cover the illegal war at Third and this news about Glass actually jumps a planned angle for Sunday. What's happened isn't surprising historically. Corey Glass should inquire about his IRR status before attempting to visit or return to the US. For Glass and for others, action is still needed. So planned actions should continue such as Canada's War Resister Support Campaign calling for a "NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION, Wednesday July 2nd" -- that's today:
STOP THE DEPORTATION OF U.S. WAR RESISTER COREY GLASS
On July 2nd…
CALL MINISTER OF CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION DIANE FINLEY!
U.S. Iraq War resister Corey Glass is still facing deportation on July 10th, despite the Parliament of Canada having voted in favour of a motion to let Corey and other U.S. war resisters stay.
The federal government and the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration must respect the will of Parliament and implement the motion which calls on the government to "immediately implement a program to allow conscientious objectors and their immediate family members […] to apply for permanent resident status and remain in Canada; and … the government should immediately cease any removal or deportation actions … against such individuals."
On July 2nd, the War Resisters Support Campaign is calling on all supporters to call Minister Diane Finley and ask her to:
• STOP deportation proceedings against Corey Glass and all U.S. Iraq war resisters; and
• IMPLEMENT the motion adopted by Canada’s Parliament to allow U.S. Iraq war resisters to apply for permanent resident status.
Here are the numbers to call:
Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Diane Finley
MP Diane Finley's constituency office (Simcoe):
* * *
It is more urgent than ever that we send a message to the Canadian government that Canada needs to welcome US men and women who refuse to participate in the illegal and immoral war in Iraq. There are three actions you can take today to help support the war resisters.
- Sign the petition in support of the war resisters;
- Contact the federal government and make your views known; and
- Send a letter to the editor of your local newspaper.
Add your name to the petition calling for the federal government to implement a provision to allow war resisters to stay in Canada. Initial signatories include June Callwood, David Suzuki, Maude Barlow, Shirley Douglas, Naomi Klein, Ann-Marie MacDonald, and many others.
Please download a copy of the petition, sign it, circulate it and return it to the campaign.
Write a letter to the editor
Letters to the editor are an important piece of the public debate on this issue. The majority of Canadians opposed the war in Iraq and support the provision of sanctuary for US soldiers. Send a copy of your letter to the campaign to firstname.lastname@example.org.
And, in the US, Courage to Resist is planning "July 9th actions at Canadian Consulates nationwide:"
Join a vigil and delegation to a Canadian consulate near you on Wednesday, July 9th to support war resisters! On the eve of Corey Glass' possible deportation, we will demand, "Dear Canada: Abide by the June 3rd resolution - Let U.S. war resisters stay!" More details and cities to be confirmed soon!
Washington DC - Time TBA - 501 Pennsylvania Ave NW (map). Sponsored by Veterans for Peace. Info: TBA
San Francisco - Noon to 1pm - 580 California St (map). Sponsored by Courage to Resist. Info: 510-488-3559; courage(at)riseup.net
Seattle - Time TBA - 1501 4th Ave (map). Sponsored by Project Safe Haven. Info: 206-499-1220; projectsafehaven(at)hotmail.com
Dallas - Time TBA - 750 North St Paul St (map). Sponsored by North Texas for Justice and Peace. Info: 214-718-6362; hftomlinson(at)riseup.net
New York City - Noon to 1pm - 1251 Avenue of the Americas (map). Sponsored by War Resisters' League. Info: 212-228-0450; wrl(at)warresisters.org
Philadelphia - Time TBA - 1650 Market St (map). Sponsored by Payday Network. Info: 215-848-1120; payday(at)paydaynet.org
Minneapolis - Time TBA - 701 Fourth Ave S (map). Info: TBA
Los Angeles - Noon to 1pm - 550 South Hope St (map). Sponsored by Progressive Democrats LA. Info: pdlavote(at)aol.com
Help organize a vigil at one of these other Canadian Consulates: Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Miami, Anchorage, Houston, Raleigh, Phoenix, or San Diego. Please contact Courage to Resist at 510-488-3559.
Veterans for Peace issued a joint call with Courage to Resist and Project Safe Haven for July 9th vigils at Canadian Consulates: "Dear Canada: Do Not Deport U.S. War Resisters!" Contact us if you can help organize a vigil, or can otherwise get involved. Locations of the 22 Canadian Consulates in the United States.
Recently on June 3rd the Canadian Parliament passed an historic motion to officially welcome war resisters! It now appears, however, that the Conservative government may disregard the motion.
Iraq combat veteran turned courageous war resister, 25-year-old Sgt. Corey Glass of the Indiana National Guard is still scheduled to be deported July 10th.
We will ask that the Canadian government respect the democratic decision of Parliament, the demonstrated opinion of the Canadian citizenry, the view of the United Nations, and millions of Americans by immediately implementing the motion and cease deportation proceedings against Corey Glass and other current and future war resisters.
Join Courage to Resist, Veterans for Peace, and Project Safe Haven at Canadian Consulates across the United States (Washington DC, San Francisco, New York City, Seattle, Minneapolis, and Los Angeles confirmed--more to be announced).
We mailed and delivered over 10,000 of the original letters to Canadian officials. Please sign the new letter, "Dear Canada: Abide by resolution - Let U.S. war resisters stay!"
Again, those actions should continue. Team Nader notes:
We're Having a Party!
We're having a party!
A Nader/Gonzalez House Party!
And we're inviting you to be one of 100 Nader/Gonzalez supporters to host a House Party on Saturday night July 26, 2008. Sign up now.
With the help of modern technology, you can have Ralph Nader right there with you in your living room.
If you choose to be one of the 100 to host a house party, we will send you a remarkable documentary DVD about Ralph Nader - An Unreasonable Man and the Awake from Your Slumber DVD starring Ralph Nader and Patti Smith - both autographed by Ralph Nader.
Plus, we'll throw in a special collector's edition Nader/Gonzalez button.
The purpose of the National Nader/Gonzalez House Party Day?
Raise $100,000 to help put Nader/Gonzalez on at least 45 state ballots.
To reach our goal, we are asking that each house party host bring together 20 or more friends, family, and other party goers to donate $50 each.
But you can organize your house party any way you want. If you want to bring together 40 people at $25 a pop, that's great. Or four people at $250 a pop, that's good too.
Now, of course, you won't be doing this alone.
Ralph is really excited about our house party project. (Check out our House Party video here.)
He'll be available that night - either by phone or through the wonders of the Internet - to talk with you and answer your questions.
So, if you want to host a house party - click here. Our house party staff will answer any and all questions you may have.
If you can't host a house party, please donate now to help fund our ballot access drive - remember, you can give Nader/Gonzalez up to the legal limit of $4,600. And if you choose, your name will appear on our home page!
So, if you can, join with us on July 26.
While McCain and Obama continue to flip-flop toward November, Ralph Nader remains steadfast - standing firm on a platform to shift the power away from the corporations and back to the people.
On Sunday, Ralph told ABC's George Stephanapolous that we intend to get on at least 45 states.
And we can't let Ralph down.
Stand by the candidacy that will stand by you.
By the way, yesterday, 319 of you kicked in $12,761.69. Thank you all very much.
As a result, we are now well on our way to our fundraising goal of $40,000.
This will help us secure ten state ballot lines by July 6. Together, we are making a difference.
The Nader Team
PS: We invite your comments to the blog.
Your contribution could be doubled. Public campaign financing may match your contribution total up to $250.
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