…and I said to the judge, it’s very clear that a crime was being committed last April 15th at Whiteman Air Force Base, but it isn’t we people who tried to make a petition to their government. It was that the trespass, you know the crime was trespass, but it’s the trespass of the drones from Whiteman Air Force Base into the airspace of Pakistan, into Afghanistan, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and this trespass is not a benign peaceful people bringing, bringing a piece of paper, a petition, to a government official, but the trespassing that is going on in Afghanistan and Pakistan is done, is lethal, is accompanied by 500-pound bombs and hellfire missiles…
September 09, 2012
by Debra J. Groom
DeWitt, NY — Forty-one people with signs, a drum and voices parked themselves across from the gate to the New York Air National Guard headquarters at Hancock Field Sunday to protest the United States’ use of unmanned drones in Pakistan and other countries.
“Americans just don’t understand what is happening over there,” said Judy Bello, of Rochester.
“Using drone to target assassinations is against international law,” said Jim Clune, of Binghamton.
The group Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drone and End the Wars chose Sunday for its event because the 174th Fighter Wing at Hancock was changing its name to 174th Attack Wing, which reflects the change in mission at the base from flying fighter aircraft to MQ-9 remotely piloted aircraft.
Although eight Onondaga County Sheriff’s patrol cars and three town of DeWitt Police patrol cars were on hand, no one was arrested. The protesters stayed on the south side of Molloy Road during their 90-minute event.
Join Us! “Put Drones on Trial”
Monday, Sept. 10, @ Federal Courthouse at 80 Lafayette St., Jefferson City, Mo.
Support CW Brian Terrell & Ron Faust in Federal trial in Jefferson City, Mo.
First federal trial on drones will feature Ramsey Clark, Col. Ann Wright, Bill Quigley, & Kathy Kelly; attend 9/10 trial in Jefferson City, Mo., & demo at Whiteman AFB
Catholic Worker Brian Terrell and retired Disciples of Christ minister Ron Faust were arrested April 15 at Whiteman Air Force Base in Knob Noster, Mo. They asked to give the commander an indictment of all U.S. agents involved in drone warfare, from President Obama to the crews at Whiteman that direct predator drones by remote control. Charged with trespass, Terrell and Faust are preparing to “put drones on trial.”
August 8, 2012
Join Ramsey Clark, Kathy Kelly, Ann Wright and Bill Quigley
Come to Missouri to Join Experts in Constitutional and International Law Supporting Activists in First Anti-Drone Trial Heard in Federal Court, September 10, 2012.
Onondaga County sheriffs arrested the defendants, from Syracuse and across New York State, on Sunday, April 22 while they walked silently, solemnly and single-file along the shoulder of East Molloy Road, the public road leading to the main gate of Hancock Air Base.
June 12, 2012
The United States District Courthouse in Jefferson City, Missouri, is a modern and graceful structure sitting on a bluff over the Missouri River. Less than one year old, it is a virtual temple in white marble, granite and glass, its clean lines all the more immaculate in contrast to its nearest neighbor, the crumbling 19th century hulk of the derelict and empty Missouri State Penitentiary, now a tourist attraction and occasional movie set. Set into the floor of the courthouse rotunda, executed in marble and bronze, is the image of the Great Seal of the United States, the eagle with arrows in one talon and olive leaves in the other, circled by a quote from the Bible, from the prophet Amos, “Let Justice Flow Like A River.”
Arrests began without warning; most were charged with violating a Town of DeWitt ordinance requiring a permit to march. How ironic that the real criminals who plan, fund and perpetrate drone strikes go free while citizens who are upholding the U.S. Constitution and international law are arrested. What is so dangerous and powerful about the Indictment that such an effort is made to prohibit its delivery?
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
N E W S R E L E A S E
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Carol Baum, 315-472-5478 (SPC), 315-383-5738 (cell) Judy Bello, 585-733-4058
Trial of Hancock 38 Drone Protestors Ends
The trial of the Hancock 38 ended late Saturday evening, November 5. Closing arguments ended just before midnight after 5 days of testimony at the Town of DeWitt Court House near Syracuse, NY. The verdict will be announced Thursday, December 1 at 5 pm. They had been charged with 2 counts of Disorderly Conduct.
Update: Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark testifies at DeWitt trial of Hancock Field drone protesters
by Charles Ellis
November 4, 2011
DeWitt, N.Y. — Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark testified this evening for about 4 1/2 hours in the trial of 38 protesters arrested in April at the New York Air National Guard base at Hancock Field.
After considerable legal wrangling, DeWitt Justice David Gideon overruled a previous decision that would have kept Clark off the stand. Gideon decided that Clark’s knowledge of international law would be relevant in the case. His testimony ended just after 11 p.m.
June 7, 2011
With my involvement in ongoing protests at Hancock Field near Syracuse, a base for Reaper drones remotely “piloted” over Afghanistan and Pakistan, I have been trying to achieve greater clarity about my objections to weaponized (“killer”) drones. A new children’s book on Predator Drones explains their significance, “The US military is always looking for ways to reduce risks for soldiers and to keep pilots safe. This is why unmanned drones are important.” This seems reasonable, but consider that, due to overwhelming US air power superiority, there hasn’t been a US Air Force plane lost in combat in nearly 40 years, and so there is negligible difference in risk between piloting a drone aircraft and flying a fighter jet. Add to this the fact that killer (Predator or Reaper) drones are used most frequently in sovereign nations – Pakistan, Yemen, Libya - with which the US is neither at war nor has any official boots on the ground. So there are no US soldiers to keep safe in these places. It seems that neither US pilots nor soldiers are made safer by most drone deployments. And still their use has skyrocketed.