Resistance to Missile Testing, Space-based Weapons, Drones, and the U.S. War Machine
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Guadalupe, CA 93434
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KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES UPDATE

Thank you for supporting the Kings Bay Plowshares. Please know that the trial and jail witness are a powerful and important part of the work for nuclear disarmament. Here is where the Kings Bay Plowshare are now in that process.

In early May, the Kings Bay Plowshares were indicted in the Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick division. The seven were charged with four counts each: Conspiracy; Destruction of Property on a Naval Station; Depredation of Government Property; and Trespass. On May 17, 2018, the seven were arraigned and all pled not guilty. Magistrate R. Stan Baker presided.

Also at the May 17 court date, bond was set for six of the seven. Steve Kelly, SJ, was not offered bond due to a pending nonviolent direct action case at the Kitsap-Bangor Naval Base in Washington State. Conditions of release required that each of the six post a $50,000 surety with $5,000 cash paid ($1,000 for Carmen Trotta). The court also mandated that they wear ankle monitors, be subject to home confinement, and surrender their passports. Martha Hennessy, Carmen Trotta, and Patrick O’Neill chose to accept these conditions and bond out hoping to continue the work of organizing for nuclear disarmament from their home communities as they await trial. Liz McAlister, Clare Grady, and Mark Colville elected to continue writing, praying, and organizing from within the Glynn County Jail in Brunswick, Georgia. However, on May 24, Martha, Carmen, and Patrick were released from Glynn County, traveled home, and began their home confinement.

Currently, Liz McAlister is represented by attorneys Bill Quigley and Jason Clark (local attorney) Martha Hennessy is represented by attorneys Anna Lellelid and Jason Clark (local attorney), Clare Grady is represented by Stephanie McDonald. Attorney Matt D’Aloisio will be standby counsel for Mark Colville, who will be representing himself. Patrick O’Neill will be representing himself with Darrel Gossett as standby counsel. Steve Kelly, SJ, and Carmen Trotta are also representing themselves. Other attorneys are helping in various capacities as well.

A motions hearing has been set for August 3, 2018 (tentative). At this hearing the seven along with their attorneys, and on the opposing side, the prosecution, will argue motions related to the trial.

Around the time of this hearing, the legal team expects that the timing of the trial will become clearer. As soon as a trial date is announced, the legal team will share that news with supporters.

The legal team and the seven members of the Kings Bay Plowshares expect to win this case. The Kings Bay Plowshares will continue throughout this process to show how nuclear weapons are illegal and immoral. They will continue to illustrate how nuclear weapons kill everyday through the theft of resources from desperately poor communities, the ecological and public health catastrophe of the mining, production, and waste processes, and the looming threat posed by their existence. The seven and their attorneys will make a clear and powerful case that they were upholding both International and U.S. laws when they went to the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base and are innocent of any crime.

REGARDING STEVE KELLY, SJ, — Steve recently called from the Glynn County Detention Center and said he is doing well and is now getting vegetarian food. He is grateful for the mail he is receiving and for your support, and has plenty to read, including the daily New York Times.

Many people have been getting their postcards to Steve returned for various reasons, so please be advised of the below rules we have learned about.

Significant correspondence restrictions include: Only plain white pre-stamped postcards can be sent, which can be purchased at some post offices and online at usps.gov. Write with black or blue pens only – no other color ink and no paint, crayon, marker, or anything affixed with glue is permitted. You must hand write your return address with your full first and last name–no initials. No return address label or other labels, stickers, or stamps are allowed. Hand write Steve’s full name and number with the jail address as it appears below. Write Stephen, not Steve. Do not write Rev. or Fr. in front of his name or SJ after it. Do not write anything on the mailing front other than his address and your return address. All postcards are subject to copying, search and/or screening. No letters will be accepted. Also do not write any anti-U.S./U.S. policy remarks. They are very strict about this.

Stephen Kelly #015634
Glynn County Detention Center
100 Sulphur Springs Road
Brunswick, GA 31520

TRAILER FOR AN EXCELLENT DOCUMENTARY – THE NUNS, THE PRIESTS, AND THE BOMBS.

Nuclear disarmament activists, including Catholic nuns and priests, challenge the security and legality of U.S. nuclear weapons when they break into the “Fort Knox” of uranium and a Trident nuclear submarine base. Are they criminals or prophets sending a wake-up call to the world? This LINK is to a trailer for an excellent documentary.

WHO SHOULD BE INDICTED?

Who Should Be Indicted?

by Liz McAlister (member of the Kings Bay Plowshares), May 5, 2018

Our country bound itself in 1945 to the U.N. Charter, which rendered nuclear weapons systems criminal by its purpose to “save future generations from the scourge of war.” It further directed that “all nations shall refrain from the use of force against another nation.” Our country bound itself in 1945 the Nuremburg Principles, which prohibit crimes against the peace, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and genocide. The Nuremburg Principles thus render nuclear weapons illegal and criminal under all circumstances. Our country bound itself in 1970 by the Non Proliferation Treaty, which seeks the “cessation of the nuclear arms race and to undertake effective measures in the direction of nuclear disarmament.” Our country is further bound by the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty of 1996, which bans nuclear explosions and the production of fissile material for weapons.

The work being done with nuclear weapons at Kings Bay violates all these laws and higher moral laws and is thus a great crime. We acted to expose this criminality and withdraw our consent to participate in the crime of the production and maintenance of nuclear weapons.

KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES ACTIVISTS HAVE BEEN MOVED

On Monday, May 7, the seven Kings Bay Plowshares activists – Liz McAlister, Steve Kelly, Carmen Trotta, Mark Colville, Martha Hennessy, Clare Grady, and Patrick O’Neill were moved to the Glynn County Detention Center, in Brunswick, Georgia.

On May 10 they will appear in federal court in Brunswick. Last week, an indictment was filed by the federal government and the group was charged with four counts: conspiracy, destruction of property on a Naval Station, depredation of government property, and trespass.

You can now write to them at:

Carmen Trotta #015636

Clare Grady #015632

Patrick O’Neill #015637

Elizabeth McAlister #015633

Stephen Kelly #015634

Martha Hennessy #015631

Mark Colville #015635

Glynn County Detention Center
100 Sulphur Springs Road
Brunswick, GA 31520

Significant correspondence restrictions continue at the new jail. Plain white postcards only can be sent, either pre-stamped or metered (white pre-stamped postcards are available at some post offices and online). Minimum size – 3.5” x 4.25”. Maximum size – 4.25” x 6”. Written with black or blue pens only – no other color ink and no paint, crayon, marker or anything affixed with glue. Please handwrite your return address. No return address label or other labels or stickers allowed. All postcards are subject to search and/or screening. No letters will be accepted.

Inmates can receive new paperback books from a publisher only. We’ll share information when available about their book “wish list.” We will also check if there is restrictions on how many books a prisoner is allowed at a time.

You can check out the new Kings Bay Plowshares website for information about the action, updates, prisoner reflections, jail addresses, suggestions about how to continue the witness, how to make a donation and more. Also, visit the Kings Bay Plowshares Facebook Page.

If you want to be added to the list to receive e-mail updates from the Kings Bay Plowshares, please e-mail Jessica Stewart at jms733@cornell.edu

KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES UPDATE

Press Release
May 4, 2018

For more information contact:
Jessica Stewart: 207.266.0919
Paul Magno: 202.321.6650
Brian Hynes: 718. 838.2636
Kings Bay Plowshares Indicted in Southern District of Georgia Federal Court

On April 4, 2018, the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Liz McAlister, 78, Stephen Kelly S.J., 70, Martha Hennessy, 62, Clare Grady, 58, Patrick O’Neill, 62, Mark Colville, 55, and Carmen Trotta, 55, entered the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base. Carrying hammers and bottles of their own blood, the seven sought to enact and embody the prophet Isaiah’s command to: “Beat swords into plowshares.” In so doing, they were upholding the US Constitution through its requirement to respect treaties, international law through the UN Charter and Nuremburg principles, and higher moral law regarding the sacredness of all creation. They hoped to draw attention to and dismantle what Dr. King called, “the triple evils” of racism, militarism, and extreme materialism.

In an indictment filed this week in the Southern District of Georgia, Brunswick division, the seven were charged with four counts: Conspiracy, Destruction of Property on a Naval Station, Depredation of Government Property, and Trespass. They will appear before a magistrate in Brunswick on May 10th. Although currently being held at the Camden County jail in Woodbine, Georgia, they expect to be acquitted of all charges. Attorney William P. Quigley, Professor of Law at Loyola University, New Orleans, LA, noted, “These peace activists acted in accordance with the 1996 declaration of the International Court of Justice that any threat or use of nuclear weapons is illegal.”

Kings Bay Naval base opened in 1979 as the Navy’s Atlantic Ocean Trident port. It is the largest nuclear submarine base in the world. The Kings Bay Plowshares hope to draw attention not only to the threat of nuclear annihilation posed by the weapons aboard the submarines whose homeport is Kings Bay, but to emphasize how the weapons kill every day. Clare Grady wrote from Camden Country jail, “We say, ‘the ultimate logic of Trident is omnicide’, and yet, the explosive power of this weapon is only part of what we want to make visible. We see that nuclear weapons kill every day by their mere existence. We see the billions of dollars it takes to build and maintain the Trident system as stolen resources, which are desperately needed for human needs. In response to news of the indictment, Mark Colville, of New Haven, Connecticut, wrote from the Camden County Jail, “Once again the federal criminal justice system has plainly identified itself as another arm of the Pentagon by turning a blind eye to the criminal and murderous course from which it has repeatedly refused to desist for the past 70 years.”

For more information visit their Facebook page: KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES.

Link to past Kings Bay Plowshares postings: See FRANK CORDERO’S BLOG

PRISON REFLECTION BY FR. STEVE KELLY, S.J.

Reflection from the Camden County Detention Facility, by Fr. Steve Kelly, S.J., Kings Bay Plowshares

“Do you swear/affirm to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you [God]?”, Dennis Apel was asked as he took the stand in Federal court for his witness at Vandenberg Air Force Base. Dennis looked to the judge and said, “If I am allowed to, I will, believe me, tell all the truth… “ The torch of truth-telling is then passed on to the next set of nuclear resisters. They in turn give to the next. So we await, from the bowels of our southeast Georgia keep, the next of the three phases (action, trial, prison) of the Kings Bay Plowshares witness.

The second phase of our plowshare’s witness, inspired by the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination, is to figuratively hammer the Judiciary… in an attempt to convert the courts (plural) from legitimizer of nuclear holocaust sword to abolition plowshare. Our instrument, all self-righteousness aside, is what usually becomes the first casualty in the courtroom – truth. That’s the paradox, the torch passed on: We cannot shirk nor truncate “all the truth” for it is The witness…

There are many unknowns as this golf-pencilled prose is sent off late April (i. e. federal or state jurisdiction), but hammer we will, despite seeming failure.

(NOTE: Above photo of Steve Kelly, S.J. taken by Felice Cohen-Joppa on March 4, 2018 at the Pacific Life Community liturgy and action at the Nevada Nuclear Test Site.)

Read more about the Kings Bay Plowshares action at the NUCLEAR RESISTER and on their Facebook page.

A PRAYER FROM PRISON

The following reflection was written by Martha Hennessy, one of the seven Kings Bay Plowshares activists, and granddaughter of Catholic Worker movement co-founder, Dorothy Day.

    Prayer from Prison

    by Martha Hennessy
    Camden County Jail, Woodbine, Georgia
    Kings Bay Plowshares

    When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:
    Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against the Lord’s anointed one”
    (Acts 4: 23-26).

    We walked in the dark, stars overhead, with Orion at our shoulder and the waning moon rising late. Praise to you Dear God, for this gift of Eden. There were fire flies and croaking frogs to keep us company. And to think the logic of Trident is the obliteration of Creation. What did God whisper to my ancestors and then to me? Swords into Plowshares! We don’t mean to make everyone furious, but why turn our blood and hammers into spray paint and bolt cutters?* Why continue to set the desecrated altar to the false idols of war? We walked onto a military base that harbors the ultimate destruction, and we prayed for the power of a message, of a witness that could reach many ears; conversion of free will towards life- giving work and away from death dealing false constructs.

    We strung up crime scene tape over the model missiles and over the door to the Strategic Weapons Facility Atlantic (SWFLANT), a place where war plans promise to take all we love. We wish to indict this war machine for what it is: immoral, illegal, and monstrous. Our foolish plans desire to see a world in which the suffering is lessened, our leaders begin to know what it means if they pull the nuclear trigger. Our action is an invitation to all for a change of heart that will bring us to true revolution.

    *Editor’s note: The charging documents and the Magistrate referred to their possession of bolt cutters and spray paint, but ignored mention of the symbols of blood and hammers, which were used by the seven in their symbolic action.

CATONSVILLE NINE 50th ANNIVERSARY

On May 17, 1968, nine Catholic activists (who became known as the Catonsville Nine) went into the Selective Services Offices in Catonsville, Maryland, removed 378 draft files, took them to the parking lot in wire baskets, dumped them on the ground, poured homemade napalm over them (an incendiary used extensively by the U.S. military in Vietnam), and set them on fire as an act of protest against the Vietnam War. They then prayed and spoke with reporters until arrested by Baltimore Police.

The nine were tried in federal court in Baltimore in October 1968 in a highly publicized trial. They were found guilty of destruction of U.S. government property and sentenced to a total of 18 years’ in prison. During the trial large demonstrations occurred outside the Federal Courthouse against the defendants.

The Nine were:
• Fr. Daniel Berrigan, a Jesuit priest
• Fr. Philip Berrigan, a Josephite priest (who later left the priesthood)
• Br. David Darst, a De La Salle Christian Brother
• John Hogan
• Tom Lewis
• Marjorie Bradford Melville
• Thomas Melville, a former Maryknoll priest
• George Mische
• Mary Moylan

This act of civil disobedience intensified protest against the war–especially the draft, and prompted debate in households across the nation, as well as stirred angry reaction on the part of many around the country. It also propelled the nine Catholic participants – specifically Daniel and Philip Berrigan – into the national spotlight.

The most renowned quote from this action is that of Fr. Dan Berrigan, who so eloquently stated during their trial: “Our apologies, good friends, for the fracture of good order, the burning of paper instead of children, the angering of the orderlies in the front parlor of the charnel house. We could not, so help us God, do otherwise.”

For more info see this LINK and this LINK

For a list of events surrounding the anniversary see this LINK.

To see actual footage of the action see this LINK.

To read the transcript of the trial see this LINK.

There are books available on this action and a 45-minute documentary is posted on YouTube

Listen to an excellent song dedicated to the Catonsville Nine called War No More at this LINK.

KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES UPDATE

If you are interested in writing to the seven Kings Bay Plowshares activists, here is information about sending them mail.

1. They can only receive plain white postcards with the pre-printed stamp (available for purchase at the post office). Please do not use regular, stick on stamps.

2. The address is: Camden County Detention Facility, P.O. Box 699, Woodbine, GA 31569.

3. You have to use their prisoner number after their name:

Carmen Trotta 65203

Clare Grady 65197

Patrick O’Neill 65205

Elizabeth McAlister 65198

Stephen Kelly 65201

Martha Hennessy 65206

Mark Colville 65200

See the FACEBOOK page for updates.

SEVEN PLOWSHARES ACTIVISTS ARRESTED INSIDE TRIDENT NUCLEAR SUBMARINE BASE

PRESS RELEASE
Paul Magno 202-321-6650
Jessica Stewart 207-266-0919
Brian Hynes 718-838-2636
Kingsbay Plowshares on Facebook: Kings Bay Plowshares

Seven Catholic plowshares activists were detained early Thursday morning at the Kings Bay Naval Base St. Mary’s Georgia.

Calling themselves Kings Bay Plowshares, they entered on Wednesday night April 4 and went to make real the prophet Isaiah’s command: “They shall beat their swords into plowshares.”

The seven chose to act on the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Who devoted his life to addressing the triplets of militarism, racism and materialism. In their statement, which they carried with them, the group quoted King, who said: The greatest purveyor of violence in the world (today) is my own government.”

Carrying household hammers and baby bottles of their own blood, the seven attempted to convert weapons of mass destruction.

Kings Bay Naval base opened in 1979 as the Navy’s Atlantic Ocean Trident port. It is the largest nuclear submarine base in the world. There are six ballistic missile subs and two guided missile subs based there.

The activists went to three sites on the base: The administration building, the D5 Missile monument installation and the nuclear weapons storage bunkers. The activists used crime scene tape, hammers and banners reading: The ultimate logic of racism is genocide, Dr. Martin Luther King; The ultimate logic of Trident is omnicide; Nuclear weapons: illegal – immoral. They also brought an indictment charging the U.S. government for crimes against peace.

The activists at the nuclear weapons storage bunkers were Elizabeth McAlister,78. Jonah House, Baltimore; Steve Kelly, S. J.,69 Bay Area CA; Carmen Trotta, 55, NY Catholic Worker.

The activists at the Administration building were Clare Grady, 59, Ithaca Catholic Worker; Martha Hennessy, 62, NY Catholic Worker

The activists at the Trident D5 monuments were Mark Colville, 55, Amistad Catholic Worker New Haven CT; Patrick O’Neill, 61, Fr. Charlie Mulholland Catholic Worker Garner NC

All activists are being detained and as of 10:00 Thursday morning were acknowledged by the Camden County, Georgia jail as “on the way.” No one was injured.

This is the latest of 100 similar Plowshares actions around the world beginning in 1980 in King of Prussia, PA.

See full story HERE and HERE. See family-related story by Frida Berrigan on, How do you tell the children grandma is in jail for resisting nuclear weapons? HERE See their Facebook page and listen to their prophetic and powerful statement HERE.

KINGS BAY PLOWSHARES, Plaintiff ​
​​​​​vs.​​​​​
​​​​​UNITED STATES OF AMERICA​​​​​, Defendant
​​​​​
INDICTMENT

Today, through our nonviolent action, we, Kings Bay Plowshares—indict the United States government, President Donald Trump, Kings Bay Base Commander Brian Lepine, the nuclear triad, and specifically the Trident nuclear program.

WHEREAS, This program is an ongoing criminal endeavor in violation of international treaty law binding on the United States under the supremacy clause of the U.S. Constitution (Article VI, Section 2):
This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

WHEREAS, The United States is bound by the United Nation’s Charter, ratified and signed in 1945. Its preamble affirms that its purpose is to “save future generations from the scourge of war”. It directs that “all nations shall refrain from the use of force against another nation”. Article II regards the threat to use nuclear weapons as ongoing international criminal activity.

WHEREAS, The Nuremberg Principles, also promulgated in 1945, primarily by the U.S., prohibit crimes against peace, crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide. They render nuclear weapons systems prohibited, illegal, and criminal under all circumstances and for any reason.

WHEREAS, The U.S. government is obligated as well by the Non-Proliferation Treaty, in force since 1970 that requires the signers to pursue negotiations in good faith and to eliminate nuclear weapons at an early date. The U.S. government is also obligated by the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which prohibits full-scale nuclear explosions.

WHEREAS, the members of the United Nations are currently negotiating a treat to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination.

THEREFORE, the work being at done at Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base violates all these agreements and is thus criminal.

Specifically, the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base refits and maintains submarines, which carry Trident D5 nuclear missiles. The Trident D5 is a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), built by Lockheed Martin. The Navy currently operates 14 Ohio class submarines. Six have their homeport at Kings Bay. Each submarine carries the capacity to cause devastation equivalent to 600 of the nuclear attacks on Hiroshima, Japan. Thus, the six Tridents maintained at Kings Bay have the capacity to cause the devastation of 3600 Hiroshima-scale attacks.

From the initial mineral mining through testing, storage, and dumping, the production and maintenance of these weapons harms human beings, destroys the environment, and violates international and God’s law. Moreover, each day this program steals from all in our nation and world by its theft of much-needed resources. Nor is the Navy or the nation retreating from this violation of international law. The Navy is currently preparing to spend at least $100.2 billion of the public’s money on a new class of 12 Trident ballistic missile submarines to replace the current Trident submarines.

Against these continuing violations of treaty law, we assert our right and duty to civil resistance against nuclear weapons. Furthermore, we affirm as crucial the human right to be free from these crimes. The Nuremberg Principles not only prohibit such crimes but oblige those of us aware of the crime to act against it. “Complicity in the commission of a crime against peace, a war crime, or a crime against humanity…is a crime under International Law”. The United Nations Charter further reinforced this principle and made it part of binding international law. Similarly, the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, to which the United States is a signatory, makes it clear that private individuals can be held responsible for acts of genocide.

The ongoing building and maintenance of Trident submarines and ballistic missile systems constitute war crimes that can and should be investigated and prosecuted by judicial authorities at all levels. As citizens, we are required by International Law to denounce and resist known crimes.

For the sake of the whole human family threatened by nuclear weapons, and for the sake of our Planet Earth, which is abused and violated, we indict the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base and all government officials, agencies, and contractors as responsible for perpetuating these war crimes.