Mainstream press article
Few if any in Indian Springs expected up to 100 Anti-War Activists to brave the heat of the desert and the wrath of Pro-War forces, to descend last week upon Creech AFB located on the eastern edge of their town.
Several activists though felt so strongly about halting the military’s use of the drones, they did expect to risk arrest Monday as they attempted to meet with the base commander to dialogue about their abhorrence to the military’s – and that base’s in particular – use of unmanned aerial vehicles to hunt down, track, and kill human beings 7000 miles away: i.e. drones against people in Pakistan, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
“Soldiers kiss their families good-bye in the morning, come to Creech, sit behind a computer console, grab their joy stick, and click the mouse to unfurl bombs on people” Leeza Vinograv, a CodePINK spokesperson, states indignantly.
Activists from various groups as CodePINK:Women for Peace, Pace e Bene, WILPF (Women’s International League of Peace and Freedom), and Progressive Democrats came from around the country to Creech to partake in this second “Take 5 Days of Action Against the Drones”. The first 5 Days took place the beginning of July and another 5 Days is tentatively planned for the end of November.
“All weapons of war are horrific” Marie Bravo from CodePINK asserts, “Drones are not merely yet another, and the latest, appalling weapon: they are as odiousness and unconscionable as dropping nuclear weapons on human beings, killing 50 civilians for every 1 ‘bad guy’ targeted by the CIA and/or the military.”
Activists came to Indian Springs to participate in non-violent direct actions against the drones. On Sunday over 30 activists were arrested for civil disobedience at the old nuclear test site.
On Monday, 5:00am activists donned white apparel and face paint and held a funeral march down highway 95 passed the north entrance to the AFB, through Indian Springs to end up at the southern end of the AFB.
Several were then arrested and charged with such misdemeanors as "Pedestrian on the Highway", "Obstructing the Police", and "Walking on the wrong side of the Highway".
Other protesters continued the demonstration with a wailing where women carrying small caskets and photos of war devastation, mourned the lives destroyed, especially the lives of the children.
A huge banner declaring "DRONES: Making Enemies Faster Than We Can Kill Them" was held by several demonstrators. Other signs included: "Kill Drones, Not People" and "War is NOT a Video Game".
Later that evening, 8 activists were arrested for civil disobedience, “Disturbing the War” Father Louis Vital, one of the arrested and a Pace e Bene spokesperson quips, as state patrol officer Symansky, the arresting officer, mutters “They are non-violent and non-compliant.”
5 other arrests were made for various charges as “Pedestrian on the Highway”, “Obstructing the Police”, and “Obedience to a Police Officer”. In addition traffic citations were issued for honking the horn and failure to use a left-turn signal as well as driving with a crack in the windshield.
The police often outnumbered protestors, especially on the last day of protests when only 4 activists were still in town attempting to hold a large “Peace” banner and a picture of the real face of war for soldiers entering the base.
“Pilots of Drones and manned bombers as well do not get to smell the stench of war or see the pain and suffering their click of a button reeks on human beings” Toby Blome, CodePINK, says. “We are attempting to bring the Real Face of War to these pilots. They need to know the truth of their actions.”
The four demonstrators that last day were met by at least 20 police officers from three different agencies, as well as 4 mounted police on horseback, and several military observers. One demonstrator was arrested for “obstructing the police” as she attempted to video the police officer 50 yards away citing another demonstrator for honking her horn in support of peace.
“I feel sorry for these soldiers who are going blindly to another country, risking their lives and limbs, killing innocent people for my right to protest – and here they have to watch me being arrested for attempting to exercise that very right” says the arrested member of CodePINK Xan Joi.