by Michael Prysner
U.S. Army Specialist Daniel Birmingham, a March Forward! member stationed at Ft. Lewis, Wash. who did an infantry deployment in Iraq, won a major victory for service members’ rights this week after successfully receiving an early honorable discharge as a conscientious objector.
Over the course of applying for conscientious objector status, Spc. Birmingham’s unit received orders to deploy to Afghanistan, which he also successfully averted.
Spc. Birmingham’s basis for applying as a conscientious objector (CO) was not a religious one, but based on the fact that he did not agree with the wars that the U.S. military is engaged in, and therefore had the right to not take part in them.
His approval as a CO sets an important precedent for all U.S. service members, as polls show that a large majority also oppose the war.