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.
Left to Right Mark Kenney, Brian Terrell and Ron Faust: In front of the Jefferson City, Missouri US Court
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?
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.
by Charles Ellis The Post-Standard 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.
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.
Kabul— On July 10, 2014, in New York State, Judge David Gideon sentenced Mary Anne Grady Flores to a year in prison and fined her $1,000 for photographing a peaceful demonstration at the U.S. Air National Guard’s 174th Attack Wing at Hancock Field (near Syracuse) where weaponized Reaper drones are remotely piloted in lethal flights over Afghanistan. Dozens have been sentenced, previously, for peaceful protest there. But uniquely, the court convicted her under laws meant to punish stalkers, deciding that by taking pictures outside the heavily guarded base she violated a previous order of protection not to stalk or harass the commanding officer.
Mary Anne began her sentencing statement with, “Your honor, a series of judicial perversions brings me here before you tonight.” She concluded that the “final perversion is the reversal of who is the real victim here: the commander of a military base whose drones kill innocent people halfway around the world, or those innocent people themselves who are the real ones in need of protection from the terror of US drone attacks?”
“Monty Python’s Life of Brian” is a 1979 British comedy film starring and written by the comedy group known as Monty Python…
This article, though, is about the life of a different Brian, one much closer to (my) home than Great Britain. In fact, the man about whom I am writing lives only 15 miles from my home town in northwest Missouri.