Europe

Thu
16
Apr
2015
New translation available
Submitted by hannah

“Suppose there’s a war and nobody turns up.”

Exhibition / Events / Talk / Memorial / Film in celebration of International Conscientious Objectors Day
At Neuwagenmühle in...

Fri
30
Sep

1-2-3-4; We Don’t Want Your F—Ing War!

Russian men carry their luggage after crossing the border at Verkhny Lars between Georgia and Russia, September 27, 2022, in Georgia.,Zurab Tsertsvadze/AP Photo // The American Prospect

September 29, 2022 / Harold Meyerson / The American Prospect  - It’s been less than a week since Vladimir Putin announced he was calling up 300,000 fellow Russians to fight his war in Ukraine, but on Monday, just five days after his speech, the independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta, citing government sources, reported that 261,000 Russian men had fled the country. Today’s New York Times reports that the line of cars at Russia’s border with Georgia stretches 12.5 miles.

Credit where credit is due: Putin has accomplished in less than a week what it took years for Presidents Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon to do—drive young men across the border (in that case, Canadian) rather than fight an immoral and failing war.

Fri
30
Sep

1-2-3-4; We Don’t Want Your F—Ing War!

Russian men carry their luggage after crossing the border at Verkhny Lars between Georgia and Russia, September 27, 2022, in Georgia.,Zurab Tsertsvadze/AP Photo // The American Prospect

September 29, 2022 / Harold Meyerson / The American Prospect  - It’s been less than a week since Vladimir Putin announced he was calling up 300,000 fellow Russians to fight his war in Ukraine, but on Monday, just five days after his speech, the independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta, citing government sources, reported that 261,000 Russian men had fled the country. Today’s New York Times reports that the line of cars at Russia’s border with Georgia stretches 12.5 miles.

Credit where credit is due: Putin has accomplished in less than a week what it took years for Presidents Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon to do—drive young men across the border (in that case, Canadian) rather than fight an immoral and failing war.

Thu
24
Mar

Fearing front-line deployment, some Russians resist conscription

Several young Russians have fled the country, fearing that they would be sent to the front line as conscripts [File: Dmitry Kostyukov/AFP]

As rumours of martial law spread across Russia in early March, some young men abruptly left their homeland, fearing they would be conscripted and sent to the battlefield in Ukraine.
They are among thousands of people who have fled Russia since February 24, as a crackdown grows on anti-war sentiment.

Ivan*, 17, flew to Turkey on Monday from Russia.

“I don’t think it’s normal that in the 21st century, a person can be taken against their will to serve in the army for an entire year. Right now conscripts are being sent to the front line, and I am categorically against the ‘military operation’ carried out by my country,” he told Al Jazeera, ironically using the state-approved terminology for the war.

After initially insisting that only professional soldiers were fighting in Ukraine, Russia’s defence ministry has since admitted conscripts have been deployed, with some captured or killed.

Sat
12
Mar

Military Conscription Is a Crime Against Humanity

A young Russian conscript receives a military uniform ahead of departing for service in November 2021. (Kirill Kukhmar / TASS

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is a reminder that military conscription remains foundational to modern warfare. It is a reckless, self-defeating, and criminal practice that makes us all less safe — and it should have been abolished long ago.

Jonah Walters | Jacobin | The shocking and massively destructive Russian assault on Ukraine, still ongoing at the time of this writing, is conducted by a military that includes an estimated 260,000 conscripted soldiers in its ranks.

Thu
11
Nov

Jehovah's Witnesses and conscientious objection | Freedom of Belief

Holocaust victims, derided, discriminated against, subject to virulent attacks by anti-cult organizations and fake news fabricated ad hoc, Jehovah's Witnesses have always been an example of integrity and altruism that materialized with epochal human rights achievements. This was the case for the freedom of therapeutic choice and for the right to conscientious objection, now recognized as an inalienable right.

A survey promoted by the national headquarters of the Christian Congregation of Jehovah has brought to light the heroic efforts sustained by young Witnesses during the period spanning from 1960 to 1990. We publish below an article of Nonviolent Action of 29 May 2020 with the comments of jurists, academics and writers, some of whom were at the forefront of that great battle.

Wed
11
Aug

Human Rights Groups urged the UK military to stop recruiting under 18s

Young soldiers formed

An open letter signed by a coalition of human rights groups, including Child Rights International Network, Amnesty International UK and Human Rights Watch, urged the defence Ministry to stop recruiting children aged under 18.

The letter declared that the UK military recruits more soldiers at 16 than any other age, especially for combat infantry roles, whereas most countries around the world only allow adults to be recruited. Additionally, this recruitment practice needs to end as “figures showed that girls aged under 18 in the armed forces made at least 16 formal complaints of sexual assault to military police in the last six years” informed The Guardian in an article released in June covering the MPs debate around the Armed Forces Bill.

The joint letter also said:

Mon
04
Jan
gdghirardi's picture

How Woodrow Wilson Persecuted Hutterites Who Refused to Support His War

Woodrow Wilson had no qualms about jailing people he disagreed with. His persecution of the Hutterites can attest to that.

Lawrence W. Reed -

Campaigning for President of the United States in September 1912, “progressive” icon Woodrow Wilson said something that would gladden the heart of any libertarian:

Liberty has never come from the government. Liberty has always come from the subjects of the government. The history of liberty is a history of resistance. The history of liberty is a history of the limitation of governmental power, not the increase of it.

That was two months before the election that Wilson won. He garnered slightly less than 42 percent of the popular vote in a four-way contest. Over the next eight years, he proved to be the most repressive, anti-liberty president to ever occupy the White House.

Fri
01
Jan
gdghirardi's picture

Defence forces survey: Appetite for national defence and conscription has declined

 The Finnish Constitution stipulates every male Finnish citizen is obligated to participate in national defence. Image: Niko Mannonen / Yle

Uutiset -

    Finns’ support for conscription and national defence has decreased, according to a survey by The Advisory Board of Defence Information (MTS).

Just over half (52 percent) of respondents believe Finland’s defence system should be based on mandatory conscription for men, and voluntary conscription for women. The figure is considerably lower than in previous years.

The Finnish Constitution stipulates that every male Finnish citizen is obligated to participate in national defence. All Finnish men aged between 18 and 60 are liable to complete military service, and women can opt to do it on a voluntary basis.

Military service has to be completed as armed or unarmed military service, or non-military (civil) service.

Almost a quarter of respondents preferred a conscription that would apply to both men and women. The idea of voluntary conscription for both sexes, or a professional army got much less support.

Mon
02
Jul

Patriotic Youth Army Takes Russian Kids Back to the Future

KUBINKA, Russia — Often in Russia these days, what is old is new again or, to be more specific, what is Soviet is new again.

The Youth Army, open to both boys and girls, is a militarized throwback to the Young Pioneers of the Soviet era. Meant to instill a sense of Communist zeal, the Pioneers are mostly remembered for their summer camps.

The Youth Army jettisoned the Communist bits, emerging as a kind of hybrid version of the scouts and a reserve officers training program, with an emphasis on patriotism and national service.

The trademark red endured.

If the Pioneers knotted red scarves around their necks, members of the Youth Army sport red berets bearing a pin of the organization’s logo — the red star of the Russian Army superimposed on an eagle’s head.

Fri
09
Feb

Activists countering youth militarisation gather in London

In February, activists from different European countries met in London as part of a War Resisters' International training on countering youth militarisation and its gendered dimensions.

The gathering was held on 2-4 February, and included activists from AKL (Union of Conscientious Objectors) and Committee of 100 from Finland, Nesehnuti from Czech Republic, DFG-VK and BSV from Germany, Movimento Nonviolento from Italy, Centre Delàs from Catalonia, and the Peace Pledge Union and ForcesWatch from the UK.

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