By Jason Ditz for Anti War – The US has announced its intention of permanently deploying a company of Grey Eagle drones capable of firing Hellfire Missiles, to South Korea, along the border with North Korea. Officials are saying they’ll provide “surveillance” capabilities. Yet the fact that they chose to send a missile-capable drone suggests surveillance isn’t the primary goal of this deployment. The Trump Administration has already shown an interest in escalating the use of drones to attack targets in places that are not directly part of current US military operations. While the US throwing more military forces at the Korean Peninsula is nothing new…
By Max Obuszewski for Popular Resistance. According to Baggarly, “After leaving the courtroom, the assistant prosecutor, who had been nodding in agreement during much of our time speaking, thanked us very much for the education.” Embroski also indicated he would try to return the Dan Berrigan cut-outs and the banner which the police confiscated. Unfortunately, the defendants did not file a Motion to Preserve the Evidence. This would have forced the police to bring the banner and the cut-outs into court. It would have been a sight to see Dan Berrigan back in a courtroom. The eloquence of the defendants’ sentencing statements seemed to have an effect on Judge Davis. I sensed that he was touched by the sincerity of the statements. And for sure, there was a lot of speaking truth to power in a courtroom in Alexandria, VA, on March 2, 2017.
By Alex Emmons for The Intercept. THE PENTAGON’S TOP Middle East commander told Congress on Thursday that he found no signs of “poor decision-making or bad judgment” in a January raid in Yemen that killed 10 children and at least six women, as well as Navy SEAL William “Ryan” Owens. “I made the determination that there was no need for an additional investigation into this particular operation,” said Gen. Joseph Votel. Earlier on Thursday, The Intercept published its own investigation of the raid based on eyewitnesses, including a 5-year-old who described how his mother was gunned down while trying to flee what other family members said was indiscriminate gunfire from a helicopter. The White House has tried to shame the raid’s critics into silence.
By Carey Wedler for Anti-Media – When he was in office, former President Barack Obama earned the ire of anti-war activists for his expansion of Bush’s drone wars. The Nobel Peace Prize-winning head of state ordered ten times more drone strikes than the previous president, and estimates late in Obama’s presidency showed 49 out of 50 victims were civilians. In 2015, it was reported that up to 90% of drone casualties were not the intended targets. Current President Donald Trump campaigned on a less interventionist foreign policy, claiming to be opposed to nation-building and misguided invasions. But less than two months into his presidency, Trump has expanded the drone strikes that plagued Obama’s “peaceful” presidency.
By Staff for Institute for Public Accuracy. Four drone resisters, James Ricks, Daniel Burns, Brian Hynes, and Ed Kinane, from the 2015 big books action were found innocent of all charges at 11 p.m. at the Dewitt Town Court. After deliberating for only about a half hour, the jury returned with a verdict of not guilty on all charges. Applause erupted in the courtroom upon the jurors’ announcement of the verdict. The four were charged with obstruction of government administration, disorderly conduct, and trespass and faced a year in jail. Following the rendering of the verdict, a juror approached Brian Hynes and said ‘I really support what you are doing. Keep doing it.’ “During the trial, Brian Hynes told the jury, “This is not a case about contested facts, this is a case about contested meanings.” Hynes went on to explain to the jury that they could, in the words of the 4th Circuit of Appeals, acquit for any reason which appeals to their logic or passion.
By Toby Blomé for War Is A Crime – Anti-drone activists blocked traffic at the Main Gate into Beale AFB for over 30 minutes today during early morning commute hour. They stood across the gate entrance holding life-sized cardboard replicas of the 15 drone victims killed during a Sept. 27, 2016 U.S. drone strike in Eastern Afghanistan. As traffic backed up behind the blockade, activists read the name, age and occupation of each of the 15 Afghan Civilian men who were killed that night while sleeping in their beds in Achin district, Afghanistan. The men had been gathered to welcome a friend/relative returning from his hajj, or sacred pilgrimage to Mecca. 13 others were injured in the drone attack. The drone deaths included a 26 yr. old teacher, a 70 yr. old village elder, a 30 yr. old principal, and laborers and farmers of varying ages, as well as a 17 yr. old youth according to a human rights organization based in Afghanistan. Activists were trying to humanize the lives of the victims that are so often kept anonymous by the media. Many of the activists gave heartfelt personal statements to the base personnel that witnessed the action
By Glenn Greenwald for The Intercept – IN 2010, President Obama directed the CIA to assassinate an American citizen in Yemen, Anwar al-Awlaki, despite the fact that he had never been charged with (let alone convicted of) any crime, and the agency successfully carried out that order a year later with a September, 2011 drone strike. While that assassination created widespread debate – the once-again-beloved ACLU sued Obama to restrain him from the assassination on the ground of due process and then, when that suit was dismissed, sued Obama again after the killing was carried out – another drone-killing carried out shortly thereafter was perhaps even more significant yet generated relatively little attention.
By Joy First for National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance. We have a madman in the White House. Yet, unlikely acts of resistance are popping up all over the country from the large “Resist” banner hanging from a construction crane near the White House, to the National Park Rangers in the Badlands creating an alternative Twitter account, to mother’s groups who are putting aside talk of their children while they write letters to Congress, to the 60 programmers and scientists who were gathered at the Department of Information Studies building at the University of California-Los Angeles, harvesting important government data before Trump has a chance to disappear it. There is so much going on and so many ways we can get involved. This is the time we have been waiting for to see real change in the world. What kind of world will we leave for our children and grandchildren? The only way we will bring change is to keep the hope and rise up, rise up together and resist. The time has come and we will prevail in our struggle for peace and justice for all.
By Charles Pierson for Counter Punch – As you read this, ISIS drones are dropping bombs on the Iraqi city of Mosul. ISIS has had surveillance drones at least since 2014. On August 23, 2014, a video was posted to YouTube which showed aerial footage of a Syrian army base. An on screen caption proclaimed “From the drone of the army of the Islamic State.” Now ISIS has armed drones. The New York Times reported that in October 2016 Kurdish forces in Iraq shot down an ISIS drone “the size of a model airplane.” The drone exploded on examination, killing two Kurdish troops. The Times said this was “believed to be one of the first times the Islamic State has successfully used a drone with explosives to kill troops on the battlefield.”
By Staff for Upstate Drone Action. On Friday, December 23, four activists were arrested at the main entrance of Hancock Air National Guard Base. Many throughout the world prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Prince of Peace from Palestine. Upstate Drone Action members engaged in civil resistance by setting up a nativity scene at the main entrance of Hancock Reaper Drone Base. Angels and carolers played a supporting role from across the street. The base is located on East Molloy Road in the town of DeWitt, E. Syracuse New York. Hancock hosts the 174th Attack Wing of the NY Air National Guard – the MQ9 Reaper drone hub. Hancock is also the national Reaper maintenance training center.
By Seeker. Australia – Eagles, those aerial takedown artists, are at it again. This time, they’ve taken out nearly all of the unmanned aerial vehicles dispatched to fly over mining lands in western Australia. According to ABC Science, wedge-tailed eagles are batting nearly 1.000 in the skies near the country’s mining town of Kambalda. All told, out of 10 drones to take to the air, nine have been sent to the ground by the eagles. Thus far, the site reports, South Africa’s Gold Fields, which has mining concerns in the area, has spent some $100,000 on replacement drones. The company uses the drones as surveyors. The flying eyes take high-resolution photographs and use them to create contour maps for future mining forays.
By Felice Cohen-Joppa for the Nuclear Resister. On Sunday, October 9, 120 people from 17 U.S. states plus Mexico, Australia, Germany and the Netherlands concluded a Catholic Worker gathering in Las Vegas with protests at the nearby Nevada National Security Site (NNSS, formerly known as the Nevada nuclear test site) and Creech Air Force Base. A morning liturgy was held in the desert just outside of the main entrance to the nuclear test site. An activist marching band then led the group as they carried signs, banners and colorful butterflies down the road to the gate. Thirty-one of the activists crossed onto NNSS property and were arrested for trespass.
By Sharon Delgado for Campaign Nonviolence. Before we were arrested, each of us explained what we have had enough of. I explained that I have had enough of drone warfare. (Beale is the home of the Global Hawk Drone, a surveillance drone that identifies targets for armed Predator and Reaper drones.) I have also had enough of the U.S. Air Force Vision for 2020, which is geared toward “full spectrum dominance” for the purpose of “protecting U.S. interests and investments” as “the globalization of the world economy… continues, with a widening between “haves” and “have-nots.” I have had enough of the U.S. military enforcing a global order that is enriching the already wealthy, protecting the privileged, exploiting those who are vulnerable, causing massive suffering, and destroying this beautiful earth. #Enough war. #Enough “accidental” (or incidental) killing of children. #Enough suffering. #Enough extrajudicial killing. #Enough.