Anti-war Soldier Faces 10 Years in Jail

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

A British soldier who faces up to 10 years in jail for speaking out against the war in Afghanistan will go before a military judge this week to discover if he will remain in an army jail while he awaits trial.

In an escalation of the Ministry of Defence’s legal action against him, Lance Corporal Joe Glenton, 27, was arrested and charged last week with five counts of disobeying lawful commands and standing orders in relation to his public opposition to the war expressed at an anti-war rally last month.

He had already been charged with desertion for refusing to return to fight in Afghanistan.

[Read more at the Sydney Morning Herald]

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  • GoodDoktorBad

    A real man……..perhaps there is hope for us……..

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

      i wouldn't call a man who doesn't honor his word a real man,
      it is nice to see people thinking, but once you make an agreement or take an oath you see it through to the end, then pursue other things.

      • GoodoDoktorBad

        If YOU take an oath to shoot yourself in the head and you do it, what does that make you? If you take an oath to defend your country from invaders but all you do is invade other places, does that make you honorable?
        You say, “it is nice to see people thinking”. I was wondering when you might start thinking. What if the oath you take turns out to be insane? What if the “oath you see it through to the end” means your death and the death of others? They may call you a hero, but you'll still be a dead fool who's blood is just a red. Think about your precious honor as your life drains from you or the people you shot because of your oath.

        • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

          don't take an oath you cant honor,
          being dead is better than being a coward,
          I honored my oath, I didn't enjoy it, didn't like it at all
          but it was better to suffer for a few years than to live a lifetime as coward and oath breaker,
          the way you mock integrity and honor show you have no concept of what it means

          • GoodDoktorBad

            Wow, quite a debater, you just repeat yourself as if that will prove something new. I guess my question to fall on deaf ears. Its your life to throw away. Have fun.
            Say baaaaaaahhhhhh sheep boy. You and all your sheep buddies can walk off a cliff together. A coward is someone who doesn't stand for what they believe. Don't look now, your kneeling in the mud.

          • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

            honor is not up for debate, you decide what causes you support, you decide if you join others,
            but you don't abandon your comrades once the commitment has been made,
            i'll walk off my cliff, you can hide in your closet.

          • GoodDoktorBad

            Then why are you debating my ignorant ass? Are you buying time before you decide to honor your promise to walk off a cliff? You seem to take this as a personal attack on your decision to join up or on soldiers in general. Its not. If you believe in what you were doing, I can respect that. If this soldier in the article believes what he did is right, then how could he behave otherwise? He, you, and me each have there own sense of honor and what's right. We all do what we can, sometimes we run, sometimes we fight. We take consequences either way.
            In this case, !0 yrs in prison for this guy…. for you, death by extreme velocity via gravity, for me, suffocating on moth ball fumes…..

          • bobbiethejean

            Yeah, actually it is debatable. You seem to be under the incredibly stupid impression that honor means being a mindless drone and following orders without question. I say it is doing the right thing even in the face of ill consequences.  

          • Tuna Ghost

            Kid if you're still think dying is the worst case scenario, then you're just playing games.

          • tonyviner

            This is some good stuff, ha ha ha. My government comes to my school and tells me that once I graduate I have an opportunity to be all that I can be. I am young and know little of the outside world other than what I hear from people only a little less ignorant than I, possibly more so. School is finally over, off I go to rid the world of brown people. The commercial that I saw on TV during The Ultimate Fighter didn't tell me that I would be doing this. This is not the glory I signed up for. It is not my job to kill for you, I do not enjoy killing, if you want the world's resources why are you not fighting for them, Mr. White Man.

            Any man that will stand up to an unjust government is more of a hero than some grunt that will kill on an order, not questioning what he does, or will kill for fear of being reprimanded. This is not a question of the man's honor, courage or integrity, believe me, all three of those things are intact. It is the coward who will slaughter unmercifully, without question. It is the coward that will blindly follow, because it is his sworn duty. People change, minds change, the only thing that does not change is right and wrong and this guy is truly a hero for what he has done.

          • GoodDoktorBad

            Actually, I think Tuna Ghost is a white woman, Get it? Tuna= woman , Ghost= white. Clever….
            You put it better than I…..

          • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PDDVWRQVUPMKRGHURIEQVNYWHQ Sean

            stranding up to the unjust is noble that is true,
            but to do so by breaking one's word, abandoning an agreement, forsaking your comrades isn't
            I left the military because I didn't agree with what it is being used for, I do so in the proper way,
            fulfilling my Obligation and seeing my end of a bargain through to the end, weather or not I agree with his moral stance isn't the issue, he still behaved dishonorably by not living up to his word.

          • tonyviner

            So, if you were in a line of work and you signed up for five years, you just found out that what you do ha,rms people in a way that is irreversible, you have one year left, no 'honorable' way out, what do you do?

            Leave the macho 'living up to my word' thing at the door, it's time has come and gone.

          • walsead1

            Tony, this is not just “some line of work.” Anyone who tells you otherwise is a deceiver. As I said in response to GoodDoktorBad, when joining “this line of work,” as you so flippantly put it, anyone must be aware of the gravity of the decision they are making and all it entails. When joining the military it means you accept that you may be called on to do things you would never chose to do on your own, it means you commit to supporting something greater than yourself and your personal ideology. If this man made his choice hastily and without proper consideration then I take no pity on him, nor should you. Supporting your beliefs is admirable, but doing so at the expense of your sworn responsibilities denotes a lack of both honor and integrity.

            Joining the military isn't just about the uniforms, the bad-ass attitude and women (although those things are a great bonus.) It is about placing the group before the self. It is about self sacrifice, even for something you don't wholly agree with. I don't expect those who have not been in the military to fully grasp the strength of this, but know that it exists none the less and to shirk at that is nothing less than reprehensible.

          • bobbiethejean

            What a bunch of bombastic, faux-macho blither-blather. Blah blah, oath, blah blah honor BLAH. You know what REAL honor is? Having the balls to stand up for the right thing against a tidalwave morons like you who blindly follow orders and refuse to question dictates that result in the killing of innocents.

            You talk about honor as if it is defined by following orders. BULLSHIT. I say honor is doing the right thing in the face of overwhelming resistance. He’s standing up for justice in the face of a potential decade long jail sentence. You don’t get to brag about your honor and integrity when all you did was behave like an automaton, you ignorant cog.

          • GoodDoktorBad

            What does this mean? I'm just a “kid” and I don't understand. Is this the old “Hell is for cowards” routine?
            Dying is inevitable, still, I'm in no particular rush. Are you?

          • Cwpayne1942

            You show yourself as the coward. Being afraid to stand up against the school bully, you join him.

          • bobbiethejean

            Not everybody feels the same way you do about these things. Stop moralizing at people who think differently than you do from atop your snooty, obxnoious prancing highhorse.

      • 4humanitynot4profit

        I think the oath was to defend his Country, NOT kill innocent people over corporate interests. It is a MAN that can stand up in the face of authority and defy an order he knows to be morally wrong.

    • walsead1

      It is understandable for someone to feel as though they don't agree with a war their country is engaged in. However, when you enlist, or accept a commission, in the military you do so accepting that you may be required to do things you don't necessarily agree with. For instance killing another human being. Fundamentally we are all opposed to killing, or at least we should be, but it is a necessary part of war. If this young man never contemplated that he may have to fight in a war he didn't agree with then he is a fool. If he did and signed up anyway, only to turn tail and run when the time came, then he is a coward.

      Our entire military is dependent upon rank structure and the authority it imposes. Without this structure any military would crumble and society would soon follow. There are very rare instances in which one can refuse to follow orders, specifically when those orders would break the laws of war. This is not one of those instances. Thus he had no right (i use the term RIGHT in its most literal sense) to shirk at the duty he VOLUNTARILY accepted. (I am a Judge Advocate in the Marine Corps with extensive training in the law of war and can assure you this war is entirely compliant with the LOW.)

      You are correct that standing up for what you believe in takes courage, and he certainly had the right to do so, so long as he did not disregard the responsibility he took upon himself in joining the service. He was more than free to protest, write letters, petition his congressmen (or whatever they have in Australia) or proceed by any other means not inconsistent with military regulations. When he disregarded the very regulations he swore to uphold he acted in a manner that was dishonorable, both to himself and his comrades in arms.

      • GoodDoktorBad

        I wouldn't attempt to debate you on military law. Obviously, you're the authority there. I would ask though, does all personal responibility for your actions just go away because of a legal contract? How can they prosecute soldiers for “war crimes” if there is no personal responsibility? So, essentially you describe your own comrades as contract killers? I must be naive to think that most soldiers at the very least have honorable intentions. Would you shoot any member of your family if told to under military law? It's only slightly different to shoot someone elses family member simply because you “signed up for it”. This guy simply had the bad timing of waking from his zombie-like state after and not before signing that fatefull piece of paper people seem to hold more dear than life itself. All you really prove in your legal rambling is legal rambling. Arbitrary ideas built on other arbitrary ideas enforced arbitrarily under force. Blah blah blah, on and on……Legality trumps morality right?

    • Jay

      You know the risk when you join any forces army or raf…. This is what you paid to do even if it is a stupid thing as fighting a useless war in Afghanistan or iraq………

      As for sean's statement yes indeed going awol makes you a coward but then again if you die in battle you will be called a hero for what you have done and i damn well know alot of people will be lining the high street in wootton bassett praising you for what you did! I do it every time there are fallen soldiers who come through WB….. Its a mark of respect!

      • mozzaok

        Honour and committment are fine, but while we recruit naive young people to send off to war, puffed up with spurious ideological justifications for performing actions that most of us could never face, then I think we should be prepared for the chance that some will find the ethical conflict too much to bear, and these people should be given options to serve out their time in a role that does not compromise their personal moral standards.
        Unless we see a military where their is total upfront disclosure of exactly what type of actions these young people will be required to participate in, then talk of committment to contractural obligations is a nonsense, because one party is unable to fully comprehend the extent of what can be demanded of them.
        So while we should respect, and honour the people who do serve so bravely, we should not condemn those whose consciences dictate that they can no longer do so in good faith, for all do not have the same experiences, and to demand that all who serve follow all and any directions, irrespective of their personal moral code, is as previously stated, how war crimes are justified, and by allowing a system where moral people can be true to themselves, is one way we can make sure that we do not add to that list of war crimes.

  • fredshaw

    Well Done Joe Glenton, We Should all back this brave soldier up and pull our troops out of Iraq and Afganistan.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bobbie-Jean-Pentecost/100000391760333 Bobbie Jean Pentecost

    Not everybody feels the same way you do about these things. Stop moralizing at people who think differently than you do from atop your snooty, obxnoious prancing highhorse.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bobbie-Jean-Pentecost/100000391760333 Bobbie Jean Pentecost

    What a bunch of bombastic, faux-macho blither-blather. Blah blah, oath, blah blah honor BLAH. You know what REAL honor is? Having the balls to stand up for the right thing against a tidalwave morons like you who blindly follow orders and refuse to question dictates that result in the killing of innocents.

    You talk about honor as if it is defined by following orders. BULLSHIT. I say honor is doing the right thing in the face of overwhelming resistance. He’s standing up for justice in the face of a potential decade long jail sentence. You don’t get to brag about your honor and integrity when all you did was behave like an automaton, you ignorant cog.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Bobbie-Jean-Pentecost/100000391760333 Bobbie Jean Pentecost

    Yeah, actually it is debatable. You seem to be under the incredibly stupid impression that honor means being a mindless drone and following orders without question. I say it is doing the right thing even in the face of ill consequences.