Father Supports Son Who Refuses Iraq Duty - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Father Supports Son Who Refuses Iraq Duty

Bob and Ehren Watada Bob and Ehren Watada
Bob Watada Bob Watada
Army Lt. Ehren Watada Army Lt. Ehren Watada


by Beth Hillyer

(KHNL) -- The events of September 11th motivated Ehren Watada to join the Army.

But the army officer is refusing to go with his unit to Iraq when they deploy this month. 

His father Bob Watada, a former State Spending Commission Executive Director, says his son, "Decided he wanted to do what was patriotic and joined the Army so he could do his part for his country."

Lt. Ehren Watada is with a Stryker unit in Fort Lewis, Washington with orders to Iraq by month's end.

The elder Watada explains, "I think he became very disillusioned when he found out not only did we not have weapons of mass destruction but the planning for going to Iraq was going on well before 9-11."

Watada says several incidents contributed to his son's difficult decision.

"Since then he has seen the atrocities, the Abu Graib abuse."

Lt. Watada was most disturbed by the bloodshed on both sides.

"Their sons killed, daughter's killed, the Iraqis. He just felt he had to stand up and say something."

Lt. Watada himself took a stand against a different war.

In the 60's, Watada protested the Vietnam war.

"It was clear in my mind the very last thing I was going to do was go to Vietnam and kill Vietnamese it was just wrong."

Watada adds, "We certainly protested agaisnt the United States invovlement in Vietnam Now his son is refusing to fight a war he feels is a mistake.

"I am very proud of him he is taking the stand that is much more courageous much more difficult."

Watada knows the Army will take action and his son may face jail time.

But the elder Watada says his son won't be alone, "I'm gonna be there with him, I'm gonna be there with him."

  • Hawaii News Now headlinesNewsMore>>

  • Trump: No statehood for Puerto Rico with critics in office

    Trump: No statehood for Puerto Rico with critics in office

    Monday, September 24 2018 10:51 AM EDT2018-09-24 14:51:55 GMT
    Tuesday, September 25 2018 9:54 AM EDT2018-09-25 13:54:11 GMT
    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci). United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, left, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, right, listen as President Donald Trump speaks during the "Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem" at the Un...(AP Photo/Evan Vucci). United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres, left, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, right, listen as President Donald Trump speaks during the "Global Call to Action on the World Drug Problem" at the Un...
    President Donald Trump says he's an "absolute no" on statehood for Puerto Rico while critics, including San Juan's mayor, are in office.More >>
    President Donald Trump says he's an "absolute no" on statehood for Puerto Rico while critics, including San Juan's mayor, are in office.More >>
  • Forecast: Hot and muggy with more showers possible

    Forecast: Hot and muggy with more showers possible

    Tuesday, September 25 2018 9:43 AM EDT2018-09-25 13:43:34 GMT
    Image: Hawaii News NowImage: Hawaii News Now
    Image: Hawaii News NowImage: Hawaii News Now

    Hot and humid conditions will continue over the islands as a trough stalls just west of the state.

    More >>

    Hot and humid conditions will continue over the islands as a trough stalls just west of the state.

    More >>
  • UN: Excessive drinking killed over 3 million people in 2016

    UN: Excessive drinking killed over 3 million people in 2016

    Saturday, September 22 2018 2:20 PM EDT2018-09-22 18:20:51 GMT
    Tuesday, September 25 2018 8:12 AM EDT2018-09-25 12:12:35 GMT
    (AP Photo/Alexander F. Yuan, FILE). FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2012 file photo, a customer checks bottles of imported wine at a supermarket in Beijing. The World Health Organization said in a report published Friday Sept. 21, 2018,  that drinking too much ...(AP Photo/Alexander F. Yuan, FILE). FILE- In this Nov. 27, 2012 file photo, a customer checks bottles of imported wine at a supermarket in Beijing. The World Health Organization said in a report published Friday Sept. 21, 2018, that drinking too much ...
    The World Health Organization says that drinking too much alcohol killed more than 3 million people in 2016, mostly men.More >>
    The World Health Organization says that drinking too much alcohol killed more than 3 million people in 2016, mostly men.More >>
Powered by Frankly