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Case Of 1st Lt. Ehren Watada Ruled A Mistrial

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posted on Feb, 7 2007 @ 09:42 PM
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Due to inconsistencies concerning a "stipulation of fact" the case for the US Army Officer who refused to fight in Iraq was declared as mistrial. It is interesting to note Watada's lawyer comment on the ruling. "The mistrial is very likely to have the consequence of ending this case because double jeopardy may prevent the government from proceeding with a retrial," A new date for a court martial was set on March.
 



newsinfo.inquirer.net
FORT LEWIS, Washington -- The court martial of a US army officer who refused to fight in Iraq was ruled a mistrial here Wednesday after a dispute over a pre-trial agreement.

Watada, 28, had pleaded not guilty on charges relating to his refusal to join his unit as it left for Iraq in June last year on the grounds that the US-led invasion was illegal and immoral.

Although the US Army insists that a soldier has to respect the chain of command and cannot choose which war to fight, Watada has said that under the US constitution he has the right to refuse an illegal order.




Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Legal experts pointed out valid points in this case. Under the US constitution, Watada has the right to refuse an illegal order. On the other side, the court stated that Watada had brought disgrace upon himself. He accused the Army of commiting crimes in Iraq & abandoned soldiers under his command.

This is a hard one. "A soldier has to respect the chain of command and cannot choose which war to fight", yet "if you find the order illegal, then you have the right to refuse?"

Where does Watada really stand here?

[edit on 7-2-2007 by searching_for_truth]




posted on Feb, 7 2007 @ 11:41 PM
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Wow, look at that.
Even your own justice system is finding it hard to continue the sham of Iraq and its missions being 'legal'

Lets hope this sets a tone.



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 01:12 AM
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Originally posted by searching_for_truth
This is a hard one.

Its pretty simple. Congress declared war. He joined, then, for his own reasons, decided that he didn't want to serve in iraq, but would serve elsewhere. That decision is simply not up to him. The war was not illegal. If he was in iraq and then ordered to shoot a bunch of civilians, he can refuse. And even then, there has to be an investigation. A solider also simply doesn't have the right to protest Congressionally declared wars, they are not civilians, they are government property, if they publically criticise thier commanders, all the way up to the presidency, then they can be punished under military law, military law that they themselves agreed to when they signed up.



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 02:26 AM
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Originally posted by searching_for_truth
This is a hard one.



Originally posted by Nygdan
Its pretty simple. Congress declared war. He joined, then, for his own reasons, decided that he didn't want to serve in iraq, but would serve elsewhere. That decision is simply not up to him. The war was not illegal. If he was in iraq and then ordered to shoot a bunch of civilians, he can refuse. And even then, there has to be an investigation. A solider also simply doesn't have the right to protest Congressionally declared wars, they are not civilians, they are government property, if they publically criticise thier commanders, all the way up to the presidency, then they can be punished under military law, military law that they themselves agreed to when they signed up.


Very clear Nygdan. Understood. Now, according to Watada, the war in Iraq is illegal & immoral. Is there any legal basis for Watada to stick with his claim? His basis is probably just because he feels that way (as his own opinion), in which the bottomline, can not be considered as legally valid.

One of the interesting part in this mistrial issue is that according to his lawyer, may lead to double jeopardy that may prevent the prosecutor from proceeding to further trials. (Could be the best excuse to let him get away with this one)

[edit on 8-2-2007 by searching_for_truth]



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 02:37 AM
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Originally posted by searching_for_truth
(Could be the best excuse to let him get away with this one)

Indeed, they should just let him go. I mean, ideally, he'd get a bullet to the skull, but realistically, its best to just say 'you don't want to be in the army, fine, leave'.



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 02:48 AM
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Ideally he'd get a bullet to the skull?

How very compassionate of you.


This guy has the balls to stand up for his views. Doing what many in the military, so it seems, would like to do. He has more brass than all the high ranking officers who are choosing to criticise anly after leaving service with their pensions intact.



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 02:51 AM
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Originally posted by Britguy
Ideally he'd get a bullet to the skull? How very compassionate of you.

That is irrelevant.


This guy has the balls to stand up for his views.

He ran away to canada.


Doing what many in the military, so it seems, would like to do.

Are you saying that the people that aren't comfortable with the iraq war, and are in the miltary, 'have no balls'. Interesting.



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 03:03 AM
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I see, so backpedalling, your previous statement about him ideally getting a bullet to the skull is now irrelevent?

Ran away to Canada, but came back voluntarily to state his case and face the music.

You seem to have comprehension difficulties Nygdan. Read again what I said.
I clearly stated that he has more brass than the senior officers who criticise only after leaving the services with their pensions intact. THEY have no balls in my opinion. Same as the politicians who, attempting to gain votes on an anti-war stance, sidetrack the fact that they voted for it



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 03:14 AM
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I think he faced the reality and waked up to the fact that the ``commander-in-chief`` didn't care about the soldiers fates, so aside from dying for corporate greed, he stands for what he believes in, integrity(not killing people on lies and corporate greed) and standing against evil (Bush will).

Sorry Nygdan if I misquoted you. So would you want him to leave or to be killed as a traitor?

[edit on 8-2-2007 by Vitchilo]



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 03:31 AM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

Originally posted by searching_for_truth
(Could be the best excuse to let him get away with this one)

Indeed, they should just let him go. I mean, ideally, he'd get a bullet to the skull, but realistically, its best to just say 'you don't want to be in the army, fine, leave'.


I think Nygdan has been misquoted. ( I just thought so and i am not sure)
What I thought the meaning of this is Nygdan's opinion of what would be the U. S. Army's point of view, (not Nygdan's) He may be a considered marked man for some soldiers (for what he did) Because he is considered as "traitor" or he will be facing the danger of being killed by a bullet of being in the front line in Iraq.

That is why Nygdan stated that "they should let him go" Nygdan clearly stated as third person "They"

[edit on 8-2-2007 by searching_for_truth]



posted on Feb, 8 2007 @ 07:39 AM
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Originally posted by Agit8dChop
Wow, look at that.
Even your own justice system is finding it hard to continue the sham of Iraq and its missions being 'legal'

Lets hope this sets a tone.

This establishes nothing of the sort. The mistrial was based on an administrative procedure that was screwed up.



posted on Feb, 9 2007 @ 09:43 AM
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www.prisonplanet.com...
As opposed to some foolish coward he is being made out to be I think the Lt. really had his stuff together. The powers that be really did not want any kind of ruling as to the illegal order issue. The double jeopardy rule will prevent his retrial.



posted on Feb, 9 2007 @ 09:58 AM
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Nygdan I am interested to know if you served in the military? Have you significant higher learning in the area of military law?

I served. Every one that serves is responsible to determine if an order given to them is lawful of unlawful.


The Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) 809[890].ART.90 (20), makes it clear that military personnel need to obey the "lawful command of his superior officer," 891.ART.91 (2), the "lawful order of a warrant officer", 892.ART.92 (1) the "lawful general order", 892.ART.92 (2) "lawful order". In each case, military personnel have an obligation and a duty to only obey Lawful orders and indeed have an obligation to disobey Unlawful orders, including orders by the president that do not comply with the UCMJ. The moral and legal obligation is to the U.S. Constitution and not to those who would issue unlawful orders, especially if those orders are in direct violation of the Constitution and the UCMJ

Ultimately a member of the armed forces duty is to the constitution first.



posted on Feb, 9 2007 @ 10:05 AM
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Originally posted by Nygdan

Its pretty simple. Congress declared war. He joined, then, for his own reasons, decided that he didn't want to serve in iraq, but would serve elsewhere. That decision is simply not up to him. The war was not illegal.



Ok, then Mr Nygdan, if it's so simple, then why don't you go to the trial yourself and show those qualified attorneys the errors of their ways.

I myself think it's a pretty cool thing that's happening, this might help to unravel this war.

Whether it's illegal or not, the war is wrong any way you look at it, and I used to think it wasn't.




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