February 13, 2015 The Shut Down Creech! Steering Committee
On March 4-6, a mass mobilization is planned in the Nevada desert, north of Las Vegas. The goal: to stop Washington's drone warfare program and end the terror of endless US global wars. CODEPINK, Nevada Desert Experience, Veterans For Peace, Voices For Creative Nonviolence and Women's International League for Peace and Freedom are joining forces this spring in an historical united front at Creech Air Force Base, calling for an end to the violence and injustice inherent in US global terrorism.
ACTION ALERT: Mobilize in the Desert to Confront the Drone War The SHUT DOWN CREECH! Steering Committee
(February 12, 2015) -- On March 4-6, 2015, a mass mobilization is planned in the Nevada desert, north of Las Vegas. The goal: to stop Washington's drone warfare program and end the terror of endless US global wars.
CODEPINK, Nevada Desert Experience (NDE), Veterans For Peace (VFP), Voices For Creative Nonviolence (VCNV) and Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) are joining forces this spring in an historical united front at Creech Air Force Base, calling for an end to the violence and injustice inherent in US global terrorism, endless wars and drone killings. We are inviting peace & justice organizations across the country to support this mass mobilization.
Creech Air Force Base is the "home military base" for Drone Warfare, where the CIA and the Pentagon are waging illegal wars across the planet in places like Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia.
What more apropos place to demand an end to the racist US policies that dehumanize and devalue the lives of our sisters and brothers around the globe, than at the heart of US Drone Operations - Creech AFB?
Educational activities are in the early planning stages and will take place at CAMP JUSTICE directly across from the base entrance, as well as in Las Vegas, a 50 min. drive from Creech AFB.
For more details:
"Let's Rehabilitate CREECH!" Kathy Kelly / Voices for Creative Nonviolence
(January 29, 2015) -- As many of you know, Kathy Kelly of Voices for Creative Nonviolence recently began a prison sentence for participating in protest against murders being conducted by the US government using drones.
Kathy's sentence was for a protest at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri. In March, protesters will gather at another base from which the US directs its drone killings -- Creech Air Force Base in Nevada.
Kathy has created the video below to urge all of us to participate in the March 4-6 action to Shut Down Creech! [You can read Kathy's essay, "My Future in Prison," at the bottom of this posting.]
CODEPINK: Women for Peace
Nevada Desert Experience (NDE)
Veterans For Peace (VFP)
Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)
Voices for Creative Nonviolence (VCNV)
Courage To Resist
Environmentalists Against War
Fellowship of Reconciliation
Occupy Beale Air Force Base
Upstate NY Coalition to Ground the Drones & End the Wars
Veterans For Peace, Chapter 10
Veterans For Peace, Chapter 87, Sacramento
World Beyond War
World Can't Wait
Environmentalists Against War
Methodist Federation for Social Action, Iowa Chapter
War Resisters League-West
How You Can Help
We are asking for peace and justice organizations to support the campaign in one or more of the following ways:
As an Endorser:
Advertise the event through any and all of your Social Media resources, your email lists, newsletters and/or website.
As a Sponsor:
(One or more of the following) * Take an active role to get members of your organization to participate.
* If your group might want to consider providing a speaker for one of these educational activities or workshops, please let us know.
* Join one of our committees to help plan and implement the event. (Committees incl. Logistics, Outreach/Social Medea, Programming, Direct Action, etc.)
To make a donation to help with expenses (for limited meal provisions, port-a-potty rentals, program costs, educational activities and a play on drone killing, and, if sufficient funds are raised, scholarship funds to help bring activists who wouldn't otherwise be able to attend), donations can be sent to:
Nevada Desert Experience
1420 West Bartlett Ave.
Las Vegas, NV 89106
Please write "Shut Down Creech" in the memo line and make checks out to:
"Nevada Desert Experience."
(100% of monies raised will be used to fund this event.) Reflection: My Future in Prison Kathy Kelly / Pax Christi USA Teacher of Peace
(January 23, 2015) -- The Bureau of Prisons contacted me today, assigning me a prison number and a new address: for the next 90 days, beginning tomorrow, I'll live at FMC Lexington, in the satellite prison camp for women, adjacent to Lexington's federal medical center for men.
Very early tomorrow morning, Buddy Bell, Cassandra Dixon, and Paco and Silver, two house guests whom we first met in protests on South Korea's Jeju Island, will travel with me to Kentucky and deliver me to the satellite women's prison outside the Federal Medical Center for men.
In December, 2014, Judge Matt Whitworth sentenced me to three months in federal prison after Georgia Walker and I had attempted to deliver a loaf of bread and a letter to the commander of Whiteman Air Force base, asking him to stop his troops from piloting lethal drone flights over Afghanistan from within the base.
Judge Whitworth allowed me over a month to surrender myself to prison; but whether you are a soldier or a civilian, a target or an unlucky bystander, you can't surrender to a drone.
When I was imprisoned at Lexington prison in 1988, after a federal magistrate in Missouri sentenced me to one year in prison for planting corn on nuclear missile silo sites, other women prisoners playfully nicknamed me "Missiles." One of my sisters reliably made me laugh today, texting me to ask if I thought the women this time would call me "Drones."
It's good to laugh and feel camaraderie before heading into prison. For someone like me, very nearly saturated in "white privilege" through much of this arrest, trial, and sentencing process, 90% (or more) of my experience will likely depend on attitude.
But, for many of the people I'll meet in prison, an initial arrest very likely began with something like a "night raid" staged in Iraq or Afghanistan, complete with armed police surrounding and bursting into their home to remove them from children and families, often with helicopters overhead, sequestering them in a county jail, often with very little oversight to assure that guards and wardens treat them fairly.
Some prisoners will not have had a chance to see their children before being shipped clear across the country. Some will not have been given adequate medical care as they adjust to life in prison, possibly going without prescribed medicines and often traumatized by the sudden dissolution of ties with family and community.
Some will not have had the means to hire a lawyer and may not have learned much about their case from an overworked public defender.
In the US, the criminal justice system disproportionately incarcerates people of color for petty offences. Many take plea bargains under threat of excessive, punitive sentences. If I were a young black male, the US penal system quite likely would not have allowed me to turn myself in to a federal prison camp.
I'll be incarcerated in a satellite camp outside a medical facility where I expect the wards are crowded with geriatric patients. How bleak and unnecessary it is to confine people for decades.
My friend Brian Terrell, who was incarcerated in Yankton, South Dakota for six months after crossing the line at Whiteman AFB, told me that while in prison he saw signs on the walls recruiting prisoners to train for medically assisting geriatric male prisoners. I shudder to think of our culture's pervading callousness, pointlessly consigning so many aged people to languish in prison.
I will be free in three months, but our collective future is most assuredly shackled to a wrongheaded criminal justice system. I hope this compulsively vengeful and diseased criminal justice system will change during my lifetime. And I hope that my short sojourn inside Lexington's prison walls will help me better understand and perhaps help shed some small light on the systems that affect other people trapped there.
During recent visits with concerned communities focused on drone warfare, many have helped me see a connection between the drone killings across Central Asia and the Middle East and the casual executions and incarceration of young black males in our own country.
In Afghanistan, where the noise of air strikes and civil war have faded to the buzz of drones and the silence of empty promises, our friends in the Afghan Peace Volunteers (APVs) continue their peace building efforts.
Last week, eighty street children walked from the APV center to the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission office to assert their right to education. Their signs expressed their determination to help create a school for street children. One sign said, "We don't want your charity. We want dignity."
Our young friends wish to provide a better life for the very children whose only other ways off the streets may well include joining the Taliban, criminal gangs, or some other militia. Meanwhile, the United States' vengeful stance as a nation, concerned with protecting its wealth and status at all costs and its safety above all considerations of equity or reason, destroys the lives of the impoverished at home as it destroys those abroad.
The "Black Lives Matter" protests need our support, as do the March 4-6 protests to "Shut Down Creech" Air Force Base. Our friends in the Afghan Peace Volunteers will continue to do vital work for peace and solidarity, in Kabul, that needs our support. It's encouraging to know that thousands upon thousands of committed people seek and find work to make our world less like a prison for our neighbors and ourselves.
My address for the next three months is:
Kathy Kelly 04971-045
FEDERAL MEDICAL CENTER
P.O. BOX 14525
LEXINGTON, KY 40512
Kathy Kelly co-coordinates Voices for Creative Nonviolence. For more information, please contact VCNV firstname.lastname@example.org.