Civilian Judge Stalls Court-Martial of War Resister

  • Playlist
  • Download
  • Embed
    Embed <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
  • Transcript

A civilian court has stepped in on the case of war resister Ehren Watada, an Army first lieutenant who was facing court-martial for refusing to deploy to Iraq.

The federal judge in Tacoma has issued a preliminary injunction preventing the Army from going ahead with the court-martial, because the judge says the military court is ignoring Watada's constitutional right not to face double jeopardy. His first court-martial, earlier this year, ended in a mistrial.

The federal court's involvement gives Watada a much stronger chance of winning. But it would mean his central argument — that the Iraq war is illegal — will go untested in court.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.