Peace activist flies “peace drone” over Predator drone on display at Davis Monthan Air Show

Sam Yergler standing next to a Predator drone and flying his "peace drone"

Sam Yergler standing next to a Predator drone and flying his “peace drone” – Photo by Kassi Royalty

On March 13, Sam Yergler went to the Thunder and Lightening Over Arizona air show at Davis Monthan drone base in Tucson. When he found the Predator drone on display, he entered the roped off area surrounding it and flew his own small “peace drone” over it. He was detained on the tarmac for several hours, had a conversation with an FBI agent (who told Sam he’d be calling in the future) and received a 90 day ban and bar letter before being released. Two friends who accompanied him as observers were also given 90 day ban and bar letters.

Sam writes about his action:

Yesterday I lifted the veil on the military industrial complex if only for a short while. During the Air Force Base air show I snuck in a drone of my own and flew it above the Predator Drone they had on display. It was affixed with a banner reading “Peace Drone”. As it took off, I addressed the crowd:

“Ladies and gentlemen, this is a peace drone. Do not be afraid, unlike the Reaper Drone it will not kill innocent civilians. Unlike the Reaper Drone, it is not involved in three illegal wars in Somalia, in Pakistan, or in Yemen. Unlike the Reaper Drone, it is not used in extrajudicial killings of American citizens in other countries. Unlike the Reaper Drone, it will not be used to attack your wedding party.”

After I repeated this a couple times my banner got caught in the blades of my quad copter and it fell to the ground. Soon after I was detained. The FBI told me that they would be contacting me and I was escorted off the base. I have not been charged as of yet but I assume I will be charged with something in the near future.