Library - Reading Room
Supporting Materials for Sir! No Sir!
Where It's At
We don't urge you to desert-that's a totally personal decision. But if that's your choice you should know about the legal and political situation in the various countries of Europe. You should know not only the law but how it is enforced so you know what precautions you will want to take.
WHERE SOLDIERS HAVE GONE: IN ORDER FROM BEST TO WORST:
THE SAFEST COUNTRY TO GO IS SWEDEN: Sweden has given full political rights to deaerters.This means safety from being sent back to the Army, the chance to work and even the possibilities for political action against the war.
CLOSER AT HAND TO GERMANY AND ALMOST EQUALLY SAFE IS FRANCE: France has granted short-term, regularly renewed residence to every depserter since May, as well as the right to work. Political activity is forbidden in theory hut not practice.
SWITZERLAND IS OK ONCE YOU ARE INSIDE; But sometimes they give you trouble at the border. People have suggested avoiding the police until seeing a lawyer. The Federal Government will under no circumstances send an anti-war resister hank to Germany.
NORWAY. DENMARK, HOLLAND AND BELGIUM are supposed to he unfriendly, but in fact they try hard to avoid seeing things. It's still risky though. Some test-cases are in progress and if you want to became one see a lawyer. It is said that the land route (via Jutland) is safer than the water route between Germany and Denmark.
ENGLAND IS STILL A RISKY PLACE TO BE: ITALY IS SAD AND POLICE ARE UNFRIENDLY: WEST GERMANY ARRESTS AND RETURNS.
AT THE BORDER: It is said that it helps to have or pretend to have some money (about $40 if possible and to be presentable. If you have a passport use it.
IF YOU HAVE TROUBLE AT THE BORDER: Army ID cards have been used for Identification when asserting status am a politicsal refugee in opposition to the war. You are probably safer in a jail for a few days in a country like France or even Holland than in Germany where you will be automatically turned over to the Army.
ACT, vol. 1, no. 1