Though you would be hard-pressed to prove it looking out on the peaceful campus of the University of Victoria, where bunnies and birds cavort in the late Spring sunshine, we are living in a time of war. President Bush is a "War President," and by extension Stephen Harper is a War Prime Minister; and Gordon Brown, and all the heads of the so-named "coalition of the willing" nations, are Commanders in Chief.
Bush and his lesser leaders tell us the battle field of this most unusual war is everywhere, and nowhere to be seen; it exists in cyberspace, and outer space, and the space between men's ears, and in the bosoms of women folk longing to be free. It is an abstract war, a war like the emperor's clothes of fable that could be invisible but for the very real bloody bodies of the innocent that overflow the morgues of Baghdad, and lay unattended in the streets of Mogadishu, fodder for dogs and carrion birds. Most of these are "unintended" casualties, merely men and women and children who got in the way of the bullets and missiles and bombs meant to destroy something, or somebody else; they are "collateral damage."
Chris Hedges is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, former war correspondent for the New York Times and the Christian Science Monitor, and author. Some of his book titles include: 'What Every Person Should Know About War,' 'War is a Force that Gives Us Meaning,' 'Fascist America: The Christian Right and the War on America,' 'I Don't Believe in Atheists,' and his latest, 'Collateral Damage: America's War Against Iraqi Civilians.'
Chris Hedges in the first half.
And; the illusion of a prinicipled Canada, that place where a caring people live and work to bring about the betterment of their fellow, if less fortunate, brethren around the globe suffered another dose of reality with the Harper government's refusal to grant asylum to conscientious objectors deserting America's unconscionable wars of aggression and occupations in foreign lands. Despite a motion recently adopted in the Canadian parliament, wherein a majority of legislators voted to stay deportation orders against some of the first U.S. soldiers to seek sanctuary here since the days of Trudeau and that other American war in Vietnam, Prime Minister Harper is yet to move to enact the non-binding motion, making of Canada a haven again for principled opposition to egregious foreign policies south of the forty ninth.
Lee Zaslofsky resisted his country's call to arms. Fleeing instead America to take refuge in Canada, he joined the estimated 50,000 young Americans refusing LBJ's and Richard Nixon's insistence they go to war to "join black men, sent by white men, to kill yellow men, to protect land stolen from red men."
Lee Zaslofsky and the growing Resisters movement in Canada in the second half.