What We’re About

The Nuclear Resister networks the anti-nuclear and anti-war resistance movement while acting as a clearinghouse for information about contemporary nonviolent resistance to war and the nuclear threat. Our emphasis is on support for the women and men jailed for these actions.  This blog is the online companion to the quarterly Nuclear Resister newsletter, a more comprehensive chronicle.

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Activists cut fences, occupy nuclear weapons bunker in protest of U.S. nukes in Germany

Activists prepare to enter Büchel Air Base in Büchel, Germany to challenge U.S. nuclear weapons deployment. From left, Bonnie Urfer, Steve Baggarly, Susan Crane, John LaForge and Gerd Buentzly. (photo by Ralph Hutchison)

An international group of five peace activists got far inside the Büchel Air Base in Büchel, Germany, after nightfall on Monday, July 17, 2017, and for the first time in a 21-year-long series of protests against the deployment of U.S. B61 thermonuclear bombs there, climbed on top of one large bunker used for nuclear weapons. After cutting through two exterior fences and two more fences surrounding the large earth-covered bunkers, the five spent more than one hour unnoticed sitting on the bunker. No notice of the group was taken until after two of them climbed down to write “DISARM” on the bunker’s metal front door, setting off an alarm. Surrounded by vehicles and guards searching on foot with flashlights, the five eventually alerted guards to their presence by singing, causing the guards to look up. The internationals were eventually taken into custody more than two hours after entering the base.

U.S. citizens take action against U.S. nuclear bombs in Europe – remove U.S. flag; blockade main gate; meet with Base Commander

Photo by Bonnie Urfer

from Ralph Hutchison

A delegation of eleven U.S. citizens joined with activists from China, Russia, Germany, Mexico, The Netherlands, Belgium and Britain at a peace encampment at the German airbase in Büchel, Germany, where U.S. B61 bombs are deployed.

On Sunday, July 16, following the celebration of a Christian liturgy, Dutch and U.S. citizens removed the fence blocking the main entrance to the airbase and proceeded on site, the Dutch delegation carrying bread for a “Bread Not Bombs” action and the U.S. delegation carrying the text of the Nuclear Ban Treaty passed on July 7 at the United Nations in New York City.

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Six anti-war activists arrested on U.S. Capitol steps

Photo by Art Laffin

from the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance

In Washington, D.C. on July 12 – the 200th anniversary of Henry David Thoreau’s birth – six anti-war activists with the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance (NCNR) and several supporters visited both the Senate and House Office Buildings.  They first went to Room 317 in the Russell Office Building to deliver a petition to Sen. Mitch McConnell (scroll down to read petition).  A staffer graciously accepted the petition, and indicated that it would be delivered to someone in the office who works on military spending.

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Four arrests during another Coulport nuke base blockade

Trident Ploughshares photo

from Trident Ploughshares

On the morning of July 13, for the second time in three days, Trident Ploughshares campaigners blocked roads into the nuclear warhead store at Coulport on Loch Long as part of a week of peaceful disruption of the UK Trident bases in Scotland.

A group of four protesters blocked the main route to the base by lying in the roadway joined to each other through “lock-on” tubes while a different group, in carnival costume, occupied an alternative access route. Access to the base via these roads was blocked for over two hours. The “lock-on” group was eventually removed by police and the four arrested on a charge of breach of the peace. Those arrested were Esa Noresvuo (26) and Kaj Raninen, both from Helsinki, Peter Anderson (60), from Wales, and Jamie Watson (35), from Glasgow.

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Activists arrested blockading Trident Nuclear Weapons Depot in Scotland

Trident Ploughshares photo

from Trident Ploughshares

[scroll down for update: Angie and Brian in jail until trial August 3]

Five people from the Trident Ploughshares international nuclear disarmament camp were arrested on the morning of July 11 after they blocked the road leading to the Coulport nuclear weapons depot starting at 7 a.m.

The group of campaigners included two Spaniards and three UK citizens. By 9:30 a.m., MOD police had cut the protesters out of the heavy concrete and metal tubes with which they had locked themselves together.

“The New Reality – We banned nuclear weapons”

Some of the many people who worked on adopting a treaty to ban nuclear weapons: Elayne Whyte Gomez of Costa Rica and Setsuko Thurlow, a Hibakusha who was 13 years old when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. Photo by Kathleen Sullivan.


The New Reality

by Ray Acheson, Reaching Critical Will

8 July 2017
Yesterday, we banned nuclear weapons.

It’s still hard to believe this is the case. It hasn’t fully sunk in yet, the enormity of what just happened. Even as survivors, activists, politicians, and diplomats celebrated in New York and around the world, many expressed amazement that we actually pulled it off.

It was a long campaign. Activism against nuclear weapons has been fierce and determined for over seventy years. But it wasn’t until recent years, when a few courageous diplomats in partnership with a group of civil society actors working as part of or in collaboration with the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons decided to take a leap into the unknown, that we managed to finally develop international law condemning and prohibiting these last weapons of mass destruction.

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Fr. Carl Kabat, OMI arrested at KC nuclear weapons plant on July 4

from Chrissy Kirchhoefer

In keeping with the tradition of Interdependence Day, the recognition of our need for each other as well as the impact of our actions on others, 83-year-old Catholic priest Carl Kabat took action on July 4 at the Kansas City National Security Campus. Carl’s attempt to incarnate the destructiveness of nuclear weapons by symbolically pouring red paint on the National Nuclear Security Adminstration sign was thwarted by employees of Honeywell.

After five years of annual actions on Interdependence Day, Kabat witnessed security personnel at all of the entrances to the facility for the first time. Despite the heavy rainfall and security presence, Kabat opted for the bike path in his single-minded pursuit of nuclear disarmament. Further down the path, Fr. Kabat was met by additional security personnel who prevented him getting any closer to the facility that is responsible for the production of 85% of the non-nuclear components of nuclear weapons. Carl was charged with trespassing and released. He was issued a court appearance for August 8.

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Continued resistance at Des Moines Drone Command Center, 2 more arrests

Photo by Charlie Faraday of Ed Bloomer

from Frank Cordaro 

Twenty protesters attended a July 1 witness and direct action at the Drone Command Center in Des Moines, Iowa, our largest Saturday witness thus far. The Des Moines Woman’s International League for Peace and Freedom chapter, the Des Moines Intentional Eucharistic Community and Occupy the World Food Prize were represented.
Des Moines Catholic Worker Ed Bloomer and Jesse Horne were arrested. It was our campaign’s 7th Saturday witness and direct action at the Iowa National Guard Drone Command Center.

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Veterans arrested at Senate confirmation hearing of “Torture Memo” author Steven Bradbury

Code Pink photo

from Code Pink

At the Senate confirmation hearing for Steven Bradbury as general counsel for the Commerce, Science and Transportation Department on June 28, members of Veterans for Peace and CODEPINK protested Bradbury for his authorship of the “Torture Memos” under the Bush administration. Three members of Veterans for Peace were arrested for speaking out at the hearing: Tarak Kauff, Ken Ashe and Ellen Barfield.

All three veterans, in response to why they protested today, affirmed that Bradbury should not hold any kind of position in the United States’ government and called on the senators to oppose his nomination.  

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Four drone protesters arrested at Volk Field


by Joy First        

Wisconsin Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars has held monthly vigils against drones at the gates of Volk Field for over five years.  This Wisconsin Air National Guard Base is a critical component of the whole drone warfare program being conducted by the US government in a number of countries in the Middle East and Africa.   At Volk Field personnel are trained to operate the RQ-7 Shadow Drone, which has been used for reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition.  However, now there is the likelihood that the RQ-7 is also weaponized.  See http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/7914/was-a-new-type-of-drone-launched-weapon-used-to-kill-al-qaedas-2-man

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