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(en) Daybreak #3 - Resisting the Draft: A Survival Guide - Adapted from AWOL by Daybreak editorial Collective

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>(http://free.freespeech.org/mn/daybreak!/article16.html)
Date Sat, 23 Nov 2002 04:34:55 -0500 (EST)


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What is the Draft?

One of the many concerns that has been raised as a result of the
united states immediate rush to war, is the possibility of a
forthcoming draft. A draft, otherwise known as conscription, is
quite simply, the calling to arms of young men in order to be sent
to foreign countries with orders to kill, and lay their own lives
down should that be the case. The Selective Service is the
government agency that is responsible for amassing the names of
the young men to be selected. They go about the task of getting
them from street corners, basketball courts, farms, and
classrooms to the frontlines of a u.s. war prepared to kill and/or
die.

All young men ages 18-26 are required to be registered with the
Selective Service. This registration is to be carried out within 30
days of a young man's 18th birthday. Exemptions for attending
school are no longer in place. Don't believe myths that if you act
"gay" or have flat feet that you'll necessarily be denied. When they
need war fodder even fodder with flat feet will do.

What is the Likelihood of a Draft?

In recent years, the thinking at the Pentagon has been that the u.s.
would be looking solely at Gulf War-style wars to be carried out
with planes and cruise missiles, and with little hand-to-hand
ground combat. Their speculation has also been based on
wars/conflicts that can be finished in a matter of weeks with little
or no u.s. casualties.

That is not the case here. This "war" that George W. Bush is
intent on engaging in, is exactly the war that the military
forecasters didn't count on: the possibility of a long, protracted
ground war with the likelihood of lots of red, white, and blue body
bags. Presently the military has nearly 2.7 million people between
active duty and reserves to draw on, but as Bush's "war on
terrorism" drags on, the reality of a draft may come to pass.

Prior to the events at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon,
virtually any draft counselor or military person would have claimed
confidently that there was very little possibility of ever reinstating
the draft. Today, while maybe not a high probability, a draft is
definitely a possibility. So, we must know the facts about resisting
the draft in order to preserve our lives, limbs, and sanity.

What are my Options?

The main thing that draft age men (18+) should do, whether they
have registered with the Selective Service or not, is start to
document their opposition to war. Not necessarily just this war,
but any war. This may help to get a conscientious objector
exemption, and not be drafted. The military defines conscientious
objection as: "...an opposition to war in any form, based upon a
moral, religious, or ethical code." To show this opposition, we
encourage youth to document their beliefs by writing a statement
of beliefs (stressing unwillingness to participate in any war),
having it notarized, listing books read on resistance/revolution,
listing organizations that they belong to, and events that they have
participated in/organized (workshops, demos, trainings, etc.).
Once this file is assembled, make copies, make sure everything is
dated, and notarized, and send a copy to the Selective Service, and
hold onto another copy in the event that there is a draft. If a draft
is called and these steps have been followed, the chances of
getting a conscientious objector exemption are much stronger.

As for males under 18, one way to avoid being drafted is not to
register with the Selective Service in the first place. When ones
registers with the Selective Service, he adds his name to a huge
pool of names for the military to choose from. As logic has it, if
you're not on the list, you won't be drafted.

The other option, the last resort that many people chose out of
desperation during the Vietnam war is to bail from this country,
with techno-fascist advancements this may be harder now but is
likely still possible. Some may prefer it to the alternatives of being
a murderer/or going to jail.

What Penalties Can I Face?

There are substantial penalties for not registering. As it presently
stands, the penalties for non-registration are still officially up to 10
years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines. Despite what is
technically on the books, it is not the policy of the Selective
Service to prosecute people who refuse to register for the draft.
Since draft registration was reinstated in 1980, only about 20
young men, out of thousands and thousands, have been
prosecuted for not signing up, with no prosecutions occurring
since 1985.

Far more effective than the largely empty threats of prison and
fines, however, are the financially oppressive tactics currently in
use by the Selective Service. Today, if someone refuses to comply
with the government's preparations for war by not registering for
the draft, they will be denied federal financial aid for college, state
financial aid, and they are barred from employment with the
federal government (including the postal service and the national
park service). Males have until age 26 to register. If registration
has not taken place by then, the possibilities of financial aid and
government employment are forever forfeited. In addition to these
government strong-arm tactics, legislation has been proposed in at
least 21 states to deny driver's licenses and/or high school
diplomas to non-registrants, and some states have even denied
admission to state colleges and universities for choosing not to
register for the draft.

Resist

Whether you choose to register with the Selective Service or not,
be aware of what you are facing and arm yourself with the truth.
Spread the word in your schools and communities. Use
information through art, music, and creativity to educate young
freedom fighters and potential freedom fighters. Now, more than
ever, it's time to go AWOL!

Central Committee for Conscientious Objectors / AWOL:
Revolutionary Artists Workshop 1515 Cherry St. Philadelphia, PA
19143 1-800-NO JROTC 630 20th St., Ste.# 302 Oakland, CA
94612 1-888-231-CCCO


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