CO Sentenced to Three Months Hard Labor

From Holden:

Jeebus, what century is this again?

A U-S sailor has been ordered to serve three months of hard labor for refusing to deploy to Iraq.

Pablo Paredes (pah-REE’-dees) says he disobeyed orders for moral reasons, because he believes the Iraq war is illegal and immoral.

The judge in the case could have given the 23-year-old up to a year in jail, but instead ordered him to hard labor. The judge also demoted the young man to seaman recruit, the lowest rank in the Navy.

Paredes has become a passionate anti-war activist, but showed no emotion and didn’t speak with reporters after today’s sentencing in San Diego.

One of my great uncles, a socialist son-of-a-socialist, became a conscientious objector when he was drafted during the Second World War (his own brother served for two years in the Pacific Theater, and his brother in law, another great uncle of mine, died at Anzio). My CO uncle was beaten and imprisoned for six months before he was finally given a clerical job stateside. It’s not an easy road to walk.