Today in History: President Carter Pardons Draft Dodgers


U.S. President, Jimmy Carter

On this day in 1977, U.S. President Jimmy Carter grants an unconditional pardon to hundreds of thousands of men who evaded the draft during the Vietnam War.

In total, some 100,000 young Americans went abroad in the late 1960s and early 70s to avoid serving in the war. Ninety percent went to Canada, where after some initial controversy they were eventually welcomed as immigrants.

Still others hid in the United States.

In addition to those who avoided the draft, a relatively small number, about 1,000 of deserters from the U.S. armed forces also headed to Canada.

Though many Americans returned home, an estimated 50,000 settled permanently in Canada, greatly expanding the country’s arts and academic scenes.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

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