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War Resister

Jon Brooks
Language: English


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Jeremy Dean Hinzman (born in 1979 in Rapid City, South Dakota) was the first American Iraq war resister/deserter to seek refugee status in Canada.

He enlisted in the U.S. army as a paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne Division and deserted in 2004 to avoid participating in the Iraq War. "He fled to Canada with his wife and preschool-age son. Now living in Toronto and working as a bike courier, Hinzman faces a court martial and a possible five-year prison sentence if he returns to the U.S.. Hinzman said he sought refugee status because he opposed the war in Iraq on moral grounds and thought the U.S. invasion violated international human rights standards."

He "was one of the first to have his application [for refugee status] rejected – a decision he unsuccessfully appealed to the Federal Court and the Federal Court of Appeal. His request to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court was rejected...November [2007]. At that time, he filed for a pre-removal risk assessment with the citizenship and immigration department, which determines if a denied refugee applicant would be subject to torture, death or a risk of cruel and unusual treatment or punishment if returned to their country of origin.

Distinct from his application for refugee status, he also filed for permanent residency on compassionate and humanitarian grounds." Using this approach, he achieved a major step forward on July 6, 2010.
Was born, Jeremy Hinzman, Rapid City.
South Dakota, I still miss you.
I bought war cards as a kid.
I never knew mom or why she did what she did.
I went to Fort Bragg, Benning, too -
yeah, we don’t know why we do what we do –
it’s just: ‘breathe, trigger, squeeze.’
And I was trained to kill – “Kill we will,
in the 82nd Airborne we exceed the
standard!” (of soldiering) -
and my hands they’d shake with adrenaline.
We’d shoot at the circles until they grew legs,
6 weeks later we’d be shooting at men –
just: ‘breathe, trigger, squeeze.’
Yeah, I could shoot 36 out of 40.
O but I’m not studying war no more,
no, I’m not going back to Rapid City.
We left Anzio Base Housing
with the dishes in the sink, Nga, and Liam.
I’m a bike courier in Toronto now,
I got a secret that I can’t tell.
My conscience is making me a criminal.
And my hands, they shake with the Peridol.
I asked Allah and I asked God’s Son:
‘What’s freedom worth if it’s bought with a gun?’
And: ‘breathe, trigger, squeeze,’
a voice inside of me
said, ‘I’m not studying war no more
no, I’m not going back to Rapid City.’
Was born, Jeremy Hinzman, Rapid City.
South Dakota, I still miss you.

Contributed by DoNQuijote82 - 2014/8/18 - 18:34



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