From The Western Standard Shotgun blog. Posted by Matthew Johnston.
Today the Green Party is urging Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship & Immigration to stop the deportation proceedings against US Iraq war resister, Cliff Cornell, whose proceedings have been moved to December 19th, and to implement the motion adopted by Canadaâ€™s Parliament on June 3rd to allow all U.S. Iraq war resisters the right to apply for permanent resident status.
During the English-language Leadersâ€™ Debates Prime Minister Stephen Harper acknowledged that the Iraq war “was absolutely an error.â€ He went on to say â€œIt’s obviously clear the evaluation of weapons of mass destruction proved not to be correct. That’s absolutely true and that’s why we’re not sending anybody to Iraq.” Green Party Leader Elizabeth May thinks Harperâ€™s recent statements on Iraq are relevant to the question of whether or not the Iraq war resisters seeking refuge in Canada should be deported.
â€œThe Green Party demands that Canada adopts the United Nations Handbook on Refugees which clearly states that soldiers who refuse to take part in wars condemned by the international community must be considered refugees,â€ said May. (But did Harper really condemn the Iraq war?)
â€œI find it despicable that this government had not only set Cliffâ€™s deportation hearings for Christmas eve, but has now moved to expedite the process to this week,â€ decried Ben Hoffman, Peace and Security Shadow Cabinet member, â€œIt just shows the true nature of this government.â€
“Both international refugee law and compassion dictate that Canada offer refuge to those who enlisted in an army based on a fraudulent contract. Cliff Cornell should be allowed to celebrate Christmas in Canada secure in the knowledge he is welcome to stay,â€ said Ms. May.
Did soldiers like Cornell really enlist on the basis of a “fraudulent contract,” or did they just change their minds about the war? And what about Chuck Wiley, a 17-year veteran of the military? Wiley served proudly for years, and wasn’t part of the so-called poverty draft. Was he sold a lie by the US government?