Thursday, August 31, 2006

Lieutenant Ehren Watada and the US Army

Pam, over at Nerd's Eye View posted a thought-provoking piece of news with these words: It’s a superb reminder that governments and people are not the same thing. And even when they are, they’re often less - and sometimes, much, much more - than they appear to be.

Read the whole story here , it opens with this: Lieutenant Ehren Watada seems to know his chances are slim. He is trying to convince the U.S. Army that the war in Iraq is illegal, a task that would be challenging for anyone, and is even more so for Watada, a 28-year-old officer who has, with much ensuing media attention, refused to deploy to Iraq.

Watada, raised in Honolulu, is now doing desk work at Fort Lewis, just south of Tacoma, as he awaits his legal fate. In person, he has a serene bearing and a hopeful, earnest face. It's the face of an idealist, a face that reminds of the great chasm between the way the world should be and the way it actually, disappointingly, is. In Watada's world—or, at least, in his world as it was in 2003—it's hard to imagine a leader betraying the trust of his people.

His first rotation took him to South Korea, where he received stellar reviews from his superiors, but while he was racking up accolades he was also developing a different view of the Iraq war, reading books and articles that led him to conclude that the U.S. attack on Iraq was "manifestly illegal." That transformation led to his refusal to deploy, and to his current confrontation with the military justice system.

There's an interview with him over at .

1 comment:

Pam said...

Thanks for posting this, I'm glad the story is getting around.