Soldier returning to Ft. Stewart after four years in Canada

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - Cliff Cornell's tough exterior dissolves
into tears as he prepares to return to the Army four years after he
fled to Canada to avoid the war in Iraq.

The 29-year-old Cornell of Mountain Home, Ark., plans to turn
himself in to military police Tuesday at Fort Stewart, where he'll
likely face criminal charges for abandoning his unit before it
deployed to Iraq in January 2005.

He says he fled because the war has failed to improve the lives
of Iraqi civilians, and he couldn't stomach the thought of killing.

The Army artillery specialist escaped to Canada in 2005 and soon
started a new life working at a grocery story on Gabriola Island in
British Columbia.

His exile ended last week when Cornell crossed the U.S.-Canada
border into Washington state. He left voluntarily to avoid being
deported.

After he returns to Fort Stewart, Cornell could be placed into a
unit or held in pretrial confinement at a local jail.


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