Three Sacred Peace Walkers arrested blocking road at Creech Air Force Base

Photo by John Amidon

Photo by John Amidon

from Nevada Desert Experience

On April 1, about 40 people participating in the annual Sacred Peace Walk went to Creech Air Force Base in Nevada. After some of the group entered the public roadway into Creech, Clark County Metro Police redirected traffic to the West Gate a mile away. After a five-minute warning, three of the activists were arrested when they continued praying in the roadway.

The prayer-action was in response to the peace and justice violations committed by the U.S. Air Force at Creech, including regular assassinations by drone at the behest of the CIA. The three who were arrested – Judy Kehr, Joan Monastero and Marcus Page-Collonge – have a court date in Las Vegas City Court on May 20.

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Juanita Nelson, Presente!

juanita_nelson__NE2012Rest in peace, Juanita Nelson. Pacifist, farmer, civil rights activist, war tax resister, partner of Wally Nelson and co-founder of the Peacemakers group in 1948. Thank you, Juanita, for your shining example to us all in building a better world.

Juanita (Morrow) Nelson, 91, died peacefully following a period of declining health on Monday, March 9, 2015, at Poet’s Seat Health Care Center in Greenfield, Massachusetts.

Heralded as a lifelong activist and pioneer of the Civil Rights Movement and the organic farming and simple living movements, Juanita was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on August 17, 1923, the daughter of Eula Jean (Middlebrooks) Morrow and Oscar Morrow, Sr.

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Seven activists arrested closing Hancock drone base gate with giant books

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photo by Ellen Grady

from Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars

At 9:15 a.m. on March 19, the 12th anniversary of the U.S.’ illegal invasion of Iraq, seven members of the Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars shut the main gate of the Hancock Drone Base (near Syracuse, New York) with a giant copy of the U.N. Charter and three other giant books – Dirty Wars (Jeremy Scahill), Living Under Drones (NYU and Stanford Law Schools), and You Never Die Twice (Reprieve).

The nonviolent activists also held a banner quoting Article 6 of the U.S. Constitution, stating that every treaty signed becomes the supreme law of the land. They brought the books to Hancock to remind everyone at the base of the signed treaties that prohibit the killing of civilians and assassinations of human beings.

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Appeal arguments for Transform Now Plowshares sabotage charge heard by three judges in Cincinnati federal courthouse

appeal-notice-612x375by Ralph Hutchison, Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance

March 12, 1930, Ahmedabad, India. Mahatma Gandhi and a company of nonviolent satyagrahi set out from the Sabarmati ashram and began his march to Dandi where, twenty-four days later, he would take hold in his hands salt made from the ocean water and declare, “Here I ruin the British empire.”

It was an audacious faith in the power of nonviolence that carried Gandhi on that walk, and that powered him for another seventeen years before the miracle was realized and India was freed from British colonial rule.

Eighty-four years later, to the day, the power of nonviolence entered into the Potter Stewart federal courthouse in Cincinnati, Ohio, where three men sat in black robes to hear arguments challenging the sabotage convictions of Gregory Boertje-Obed, Megan Rice and Michael Walli in the Transform Now Plowshares action. Appellate arguments usually echo in a courtroom empty but for judges, a clerk and the lawyers. But on March 12, 2015, the pews began to fill at 8:30. By 9:00 there were more than forty people in the courtroom—three dozen Plowshares supporters and another dozen high school students on a field trip who were about to be educated about the legal process, and maybe be prompted to think about nuclear weapons and the power of nonviolent direct action in the process.

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Fr. Bill “Bix” Bichsel, S.J. – Presente!

photo by Felice Cohen-Joppa

photo by Felice Cohen-Joppa

Knowing that his life was drawing to an end, seventy friends of nuclear resister Fr. Bill “Bix” Bichsel sang one of his favorite songs at the beginning of the Pacific Life Community gathering in California on Friday evening. “Your face will shine through all our tears…. And when we sing another little victory song, precious friend you will be there.” He passed from this world less than 24 hours later, on Saturday evening, February 28. His life was a gift to many. Rest in peace, dear friend.

The Rev. Bill Bichsel, longtime weapons protester and Tacoma-born priest, dead at 86

by Steve Maynard

from The News Tribune

For nearly 40 years, the Rev. Bill Bichsel protested against U.S. military programs and weapons, resulting in dozens of arrests and making the Jesuit priest one of the most visible and admired protesters in the Pacific Northwest.

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Break-In at Y-12: How a handful of pacifists and nuns exposed the vulnerability of America’s nuclear-weapons sites

Security Breach HEUMFA Reporter at Large, March 9, 2015 Issue of the New Yorker

by Eric Schlosser

The Y-12 National Security Complex sits in a narrow valley, surrounded by wooded hills, in the city of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Y-12 and Oak Ridge were built secretly, within about two years, as part of the Manhattan Project, and their existence wasn’t publicly acknowledged until the end of the Second World War. By then, the secret city had a population of seventy-five thousand. Few of its residents had been allowed to know what was being done at the military site, which included one of the largest buildings in the world. Y-12 processed the uranium used in Little Boy, the atomic bomb that destroyed Hiroshima. Seven decades later, Y-12 is the only industrial complex in the United States devoted to the fabrication and storage of weapons-grade uranium. Every nuclear warhead and bomb in the American arsenal contains uranium from Y-12.

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Thirty-four anti-drone protesters arrested blocking two access gates to Creech Air Force Base

photo by Crystal Zevon

photo by Crystal Zevon

Anti-drone protesters arrested, cited at Creech Air Force Base

from the Air Force Times

by Sally Ho, The Associated Press

LAS VEGAS — Anti-drone protesters who said they wanted to spotlight war crimes and connect with pilots were arrested on March 6 after trying to block the entrance Friday at a US Air Force base in southern Nevada.

More than 100 people were assembled Friday morning outside the Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs near Las Vegas, officials said.

The protesters attempted to block the entrance but the workers were able to come and go during the shift change between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m., officials said.

Organizers said protesters stood or laid down on the road in front of the two access gates. Others were stationed along the highway carrying photos and tombs to represent drone warfare victims.

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Twelve nuclear disarmament activists arrested at Lockheed Martin in California

photo by Felice Cohen-Joppa

photo by Felice Cohen-Joppa

To conclude the 2015 gathering of the Pacific Life Community, 80 activists held a colorful and lively demonstration on Monday, March 2 at Lockheed Martin in Sunnyvale, California, protesting nuclear weapons work and other weapons for war.

After sharing poetry, litany, dancing and songs, twelve of the protesters spread across the entrance roadway with a 50 foot banner that read “Lockheed Weapons Terrorize the World” to stop traffic going into the weapons plant.

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Three Trident Ploughshares activists arrested at Faslane naval base in Scotland

Trident Ploughshares Photo

Photo by Douglas Shaw

from the Trident Ploughshares

On Sunday, February 22, three Trident Ploughshares activists were arrested at Faslane naval base after attempting to paint peace slogans on the perimeter fence. One person was charged with vandalism while the other two were detained after pinning a set of “Peace Pirate Articles” to the fence.

Jean Oliver, from Biggar, Janet Fenton from Edinburgh and David Mackenzie from Largs are known as the Peaton Peace Pirates (the “PPP”), and are careful to distinguish themselves from the sectarian splinter group known as the Peace Pirates From Peaton (the “PPFP”).

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Six arrested on Ash Wednesday at killer drone protest at Beale Air Base

photo by Paula Orloff

photo by Paula Orloff

On the afternoon of February 18, six people – including several clergy members and military veterans – were arrested during an Ash Wednesday service at the gate of Beale Air Force Base during an act of “repentance” for the innocent people killed by the U.S. government’s fleet of killer drones.

Participants spread ashes memorializing those of children killed by U.S. drones overseas. The four women and two men who crossed the line also carried an indictment with them onto the base (see indictment below). They were charged with trespassing onto federal land and taken into custody by military police.

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