CO’s, deserters, dodgers pacificists & veterans

Questioning War?

Lecture 7 Monday February 14, 2011 PEACE ST 2BB3: Introduction to the Study of War Dr Colin Salter, Centre for Peace Studies, McMaster University


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What is a Conscientious Objector? Why do people dodge or desert?


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Tim Hetherington & Sebastian Junger (2010) Outpost Films/National Geographic


Just war theory

jus ad bellum

jus in bello


I’ve never felt freer in my life. There’s no higher assertion of your freedom, than to follow your conscience.
Camilo Mejia


Soldiers of Conscience

Catherine Ryan & Gary Weimberg (2007)


Conscientious objection
The right to conscientious objection to military service is considered a legitimate exercise of the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion as articulated implicitly in article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and explicitly by the Human Rights Committee in its general comment No. 22 on article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Rachel Taylor and Kasper Jon Larsen (2004)



Bradley Manning
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Daniel Elsberg Collateral Murder (2010) & Ethan McCord


Citations & further reading
Courage to resist (2010) ‘Profiles in Resistance Daniel Elsberg (2006) ‘The Next War’, Harpers Magazine, October. Gleen Greenwald (2010) ‘The worsening journalistic disgrace at Wired’,, December 27 Brian Martin (2005) ‘Researching nonviolent action: past themes and future possibilities’,Peace & Change, Vol. 30, No. 2,: 247-270. Catherine Ryan & Gary Weimberg (2007) Soldiers of Conscience, Rachel Taylor and Kasper Jon Larsen (2004) ‘References to Conscientious Objection in the documents submitted to, and resolutions of, the UN Commission on Human Rights’, UN Commission on Human Rights, 60th Session.


Image sources
Pablo Picasso (1937) Guernica. Oil on canvas. Unknown soldier in Iraq. Date unknown. sourced from–-part-v/ Carlos Latuff (2003) War 2. Sourced from Crimethinc (undated) War on Terror/Drugs.


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