Arresting the Wrong Suspects

Photo of John LaForge by Felton Davis

Photo of John LaForge by Felton Davis

From CounterPunch

by John LaForge

NEW YORK, NY — At the United Nations here this month, talk is focused on the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). At about 11 a.m. Apr. 28, I was handcuffed with 21 other nuclear realists after blocking an entrance to the US Mission. I say “realists” because US media won’t pay much attention to US nuclear weapons unless somebody is taken off to a jail.

Barrels of ink are used detailing Iran’s non-existent nuclear arsenal. The US has about 2,000 nuclear weapons ready to launch and used as ticking time bombs every day by presidents the way gunslingers can extort the loot without ever pulling the trigger. Deterrence it is not.

When we were ordered to leave or face arrest, we called ourselves crime-stoppers and asked the officers to arrest the real scofflaws. We were packed into vans and driven to the 17th Precinct. Our band of nuclear abolitionists concluded a long time ago that US nuclear banditry and pollutionism was worth dramatizing for a day, or a month, or a lifetime.

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Sixteen arrested stopping traffic at busy main gate of California drone base

Photo by Guarionex Delgado of arrestees after being released from custody

Photo by Guarionex Delgado of arrestees after being released from custody

Sixteen people – including a three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee, military veterans and clergy members – were arrested early in the morning of April 28 at the main gate to a drone operations center at Beale Air Force Base in California. Several protestors were in tears as the names and ages of children killed by U.S. drones were read aloud.

All were released, and will be arraigned in U.S. Federal Court on misdemeanor trespassing charges.

Among those arrested was Nobel Peace Prize nominee Kathy Kelly from Chicago, who just finished three months in prison for attempting to deliver a loaf of bread and a letter to the base commander of a drone base in Missouri, asking him to stop piloting lethal drone flights over Afghanistan from within the base.

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Man arrested for landing nuclear protest drone on residence of Japan’s Prime Minister

Fukui man arrested for landing drone on Abe’s office says he was protesting nuclear policy

Yasuo Yamamoto in custody. Photo © Noboru Tomura,

Yasuo Yamamoto in custody. Photo © Noboru Tomura,

from The Japan Times
APR 25, 2015

A man was arrested Saturday in Fukui Prefecture for allegedly flying the drone found earlier this week on the roof of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s official residence, investigators said.
Yasuo Yamamoto, 40, of the city of Obama, presented himself to the Fukui Prefectural Police on Friday evening and said he landed the drone on the rooftop of the prime minister’s office to protest the government’s nuclear energy policy.

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Climate activists arrested on Earth Day at Pentagon

02-Procession-to-Pentagon-e1429884805844from Popular Resistance

by Max Obuszewski

Members of the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance [NCNR] have been active in challenging U.S. invasions and attacks of Afghanistan, Iraq and other countries. Frequently NCNR members have been arrested, and then in court speak out against such U.S. policies. On May 23, 2013, for example, members of NCNR filed a criminal complaint with the U.S. attorney’s office in Alexandria, Virginia against the CIA’s use of drone strikes to assassinate people in various countries, including Pakistan. The citizen activists never received a response.

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Making History and Building a Future in the Nevada Desert

Nuclear-America-Peace-Campby Brian Terrell

On March 26, I was in Nevada in my role as event coordinator for Nevada Desert Experience, preparing for the annual Sacred Peace Walk, a 65-mile trek through the desert from Las Vegas to the nuclear Test Site at Mercury, Nevada, an event that NDE has sponsored each spring for about 30 years. Two days before the walk was to begin, a car load of us organizers traced the route.

The last stop but one on the traditional itinerary is the “Peace Camp,” a place in the desert where we usually stay the last night before crossing Highway 95 into what is now known as the Nevada National Security Site. When we got there we were surprised to find the entire camp and the way leading from it to the Test Site surrounded by bright orange plastic snow fencing.

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Faslane nuclear weapons base day-long blockade results in 34 arrests; workers sent home

_82280589_pafrom Scrap Trident Coalition

13th April 2015

The Scrap Trident Coalition has hailed today’s blockade of the UK’s nuclear weapons base at Faslane in Scotland as a huge success after the gates were blocked from 7 am until 13.30 pm and many workers, who had been queued up in buses in nearby Helensburgh, were sent home.

Thirty-four people have been arrested breach of the peace for lying in the gateways, or malicious mischief for painting. At 3pm the protesters still in position relinquished the blockade voluntarily and held a closing ceremony at the base’s north gate.

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My five days in “Pod A” at the Juneau County Jail

drones - bonnie and char.previewby Bonnie Block

On April 1, 2015 a six person jury found me guilty of trespassing at the Volk Field Open House because I handed out leaflets with four questions about drone warfare in the parking lot of the Wisconsin National Guard Museum. National Guard personnel deemed that “propaganda” sight unseen. The result was my arrest, being charged with trespass, pretrial motions to greatly limit the evidence I could present to the jury and ultimately the trial. The fine was $232 but I felt I couldn’t in good conscience pay it.

So Judge Paul Curran sentenced me to serve five days in the county jail. After I was “booked in” and issued my orange jump suit and orange plastic clogs, I was escorted to Pod A where I became the 7th woman living in a two-story cinderblock room about 35 by 15 feet. The front half was common space with metal tables with stools or benches attached, a TV high the wall, a cabinet with the various request forms and some books & games or puzzles and two phones. The front wall was one-way glass so guards in the “bubble” could see in but we couldn’t see out.

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Twenty-two nuclear abolition activists walked into Nevada nuclear weapons test site, were arrested

Nevada Desert Experience photo

Nevada Desert Experience photo

from the Nevada Desert Experience

Twenty-two people were arrested on Good Friday, April 3 at the Nevada nuclear test site. The activists, from eight different U.S. states and Germany, Japan and the Netherlands, had crossed over the cattle guard that marks the boundary of the Nevada National Security Site (formerly known as the Nevada Test Site).

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No arrests made at two blockades in March at Burghfield Atomic Weapons Establishment in England

DSC_0931-1024x768from Action AWE


Summary of the 3 blockades at AWE Burghfield on March 2, 2015

Taken from on-site witnesses and compiled by Angie Zelter on 10th March

The Thames Valley Police Liaisons informed Action AWE at the weekend that there was a green line painted on the MoD road (The Mearings) and that anyone stepping across this would be arrested. On the day it was evident that several hundred police had been drafted in from many parts of Britain, including Devon and Wales. It was also soon evident that the majority of the AWE Burghfield staff had been given the day off and that construction vehicles had been told not to come that day. This was a success in itself.

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Seven peace activists arrested on Good Friday at Lockheed Martin, world’s #1 war profiteer

6511730351_dcdfcd3098_m-1from Brandywine Peace Community

Seven activists were arrested following a Good Friday Stations of Justice, Peace, and Nonviolent Resistance at Lockheed Martin in Valley Forge/King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. After each station and accompanying reading, a large wooden cross was hammered next to the main driveway entrance, into the ground next to the large wooden sign reading, against the backdrop of the Lockheed Martin logo, ‘We’re Making A Killing’.

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