Soldiers face court martial for alleged anti-protester rants

Students protest in Montreal, May 23, 2012. (MAXIME DELAND/QMI Agency files)

Students protest in Montreal, May 23, 2012. (MAXIME DELAND/QMI Agency files)

Jean-Nicolas Blanchet, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:00 PM ET

QUEBEC CITY -- Four soldiers face a court martial next month for allegedly making hateful online comments about protesters during the student crisis in May.

The soldiers are stationed at CFB Valcartier near Quebec City.

The Canadian Forces has been investigating Facebook postings by people who identified themselves as members of the army, said Capt. Julie Brouillette, spokeswoman for the 5 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group.

An anti-fascist group tipped off the army to several postings made in the spring at the height of violent province-wide protests over tuition hikes.

One individual claiming to be a soldier suggested rubber bullets be used on student demonstrators. Another user, who had recently left the army, recommended a Nazi concentration camp be reopened to house protesters.

A photo of a woman who was seriously injured during a rally in Drummondville, Que., elicited several mocking comments on Facebook.

"Bitch hippie communist," read one comment, while another read, "Well done on this bitch," and a third said, "Better for her to have stayed home."

The army subsequently issued a warning to all of its personnel.

"This behaviour does not represent our values," said the memo. "Such remarks will not be tolerated. Be advised that any member who makes public statements which undermine human integrity and dignity will be investigated."

The four soldiers could face sanctions ranging from a reprimand to 14 days of leave.


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