Gallery of Images from Hancock Resistance, 9/25/2017
Here is a gallery of images from “Rich Man’s War, Poor People’s Blood“, a civil resistance action by Upstate Drone Action at Hancock Air National Guard Base that resulted in 7 arrests on September 25, 2017.
Click on an image to see it enlarged in a frame. The photographer’s name is highlighted on hover. Right click on an image to see it full sized for download. You can click through the framed images as a slideshow.
Men & Women of the 174th Attack Wing, Stop Drone Crucifixions
Men & women of the 174th Attack Wing,—Leave the Military
People of Iraq Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Afghanistan Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Pakistan Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Syria Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Yemen Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Libya Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Somalia Forgive us our Killer Drones
People of Gaza Forgive us our Killer Drones
Our Tax Dollars for Death Forgive Us
Slaughtered Native Americans Forgive Us
Teaching Hate Forgive Us
Our Sins against our Black brothers and sisters Forgive Us
Tortured people of the Philippines Forgive Us
United States invasions of Mexico Forgive Us
United States invasions of Haiti Forgive Us
United States invasions of Nicaragua Forgive Us
United States imperialism in Latin America Forgive Us
United States killings in the Great War Forgive Us
60 Million dead in World War II Forgive Us
Calling 60 Million dead a ‘Good War’ Forgive Us
Believing War can be Just Forgive Us
Christian Churches’ Silence in Nazi Germany Forgive Us
German Catholic Bishops’ silence Forgive Us
Lutheran Church Silence Forgive Us
Dresden Fire Bombed Forgive Us
Hiroshima Incinerated Forgive Us
Nagasaki Destroyed Forgive Us
Nagasaki Cathedral Ground Zero Forgive Us
All Christian Crews Do Bombing Forgive Us
38,000 Americans Died in World War II Forgive Us
1 Million North Korean Soldiers & Civilians Killed Forgive Us
United States Kills 3 Million Vietnamese Forgive Us
58,000 American Troops Killed in Vietnam Forgive Us
Dow Chemical’s Agent Orange Devastates People and Land of Vietnam Forgive Us
American Napalm Burns Vietnamese Children Forgive Us
Trillions Spent on Nuclear Weapons & War Preparation Forgive Us
United States Supports El Salvador Death Camps Forgive Us
United States CIA Helps Assassinate 250,000 People in Guatamala Forgive Us
United States Creates a Torture & Assassination School at Fort Benning, GA Forgive Us
Graduates of the School of the Americas Kill Peasants and Union Leaders Forgive Us
Graduates of the School of the Americas Kill Priests & Nuns Forgive Us
US Troops IN 180 Countries Around the World Forgive Us
US Led Sanctions Kill 500,000 Iraqi Children Forgive Us
United States Slaughters Fleeing Iraqi Soldiers Forgive Us
US Troops Stationed in Muslim Countries Forgive Us
Invasion and Occupation of Afghanistan Forgive Us
Shock and Awe Bombings of Iraq Kill Civilians by the Thousands Forgive Us
Two Million People Flee American War Making in Iraq Forgive Us
American Violence Spreads Throughout The Middle East Forgive Us
Refugees Die in the Deserts & on the Sea Fleeing Wars Promoted by the United States Forgive Us
United States Rejects Middle East Refugees Forgive Us
Islamophobia Sweeps the Nation Forgive Us
United States Drones Assassinate People in Seven Muslim Nations Forgive Us
One Half Our National Spending is for Death & Weapons Forgive Us
Weapons Are Our Largest Export Forgive Us
United States in Year 2017 Will Cut Assistance to the Poor & Children’s Programs Forgive Us
Building Walls Instead of Empathy and Generosity
Our Bloated Military Budget Will be Increased $54 Billion This Year Forgive Us
Republicans & Democrats Praise Trump for Killing Syrians Forgive Us
Aaaaa men…..Aaaaaa men….Amen Amen Amen
Pre Analysis of “Big Books” Trial #1
Our three-day Hancock trial in De Witt ended around midnight Thursday (3/2) and, exhausted, we scattered to the winds — some of us with long trips home. Hence only minimal de-briefing or analysis. but here I’ll mention some of what I think are relevant factors in our acquittals.
~ First, obviously our cause is essential — not that that usually guarantees anti-drone activists victories in court….
~ One of our four defendants (JR) is African American with Native American ancestry.
~ The trial began last fall, but – at our insistence — was postponed til February 28 in order to get a new jury pool that wasn’t drawn only from the almost-lily white suburb of De Witt. our sense was that this time we got a sympathetic jury (mostly women) – perhaps drawn from a population newly awakened to the trump horror.
~ We also were blessed with two dedicated, political, savvy pro bono attorneys (JW, DI) who have made multiple trips from afar (Long Island and Buffalo) to defend us in previous Hancock drone trials — they knew us, the issue, the charges and the judge (DG). They were skilled in voir dire; their presence served as a check on an unfriendly judge. The judge knows that, given our skillful legal support, abridgements of our rights might well be reversed on appeal.
~ The defendants are seasoned activists, each having been tried before in the De Witt court (as well as in other courts for other issues over the years). Our goal was not necessarily to “win” or to avoid prison, but rather to put weaponized drones on trial. Maybe our action and our defense radiated a certain integrity.
~ Three of the defendants (JR, DB, BH) went pro se; this gave our defense added flexibility and allowed the jury to see us as human beings. one of us (EK), who usually goes pro se, deliberately allowed JW to represent him, which allowed that attorney to play key roles in the defense.
~ The defendants acted and spoke more or less with unanimity both during the trial and during our planning sessions before each trial session.
~ Although Hancock AFB and the town of De Witt are in Greater Syracuse, local media and even many local liberal activists — being in denial about how pivotal militarism and the pentagon budget are to the issues they work on — pretty much ignore our coalition’s scrupulously nonviolent and protracted (since 2010) civil resistance campaign. Nonetheless we got valuable support from other locals providing food and lodging to sustain the defense.
~ I can single out here such support, typical of all our trials, of Friends of Dorothy, the local catholic worker house. [in previous trials another catholic worker house, Slocum House, has played a key hospitality role…and we expect it will continue to do so in the future. Also, former Hancock Defendants (AT, RK) provided key lodging and logistical support.
~ While no mainstream media attended the trial (despite our pre-trial press releases), we had our own videographers (CB, EG, ER) who will be getting out footage of opening and closing statements. We were also fortunate in having our videographers (JA, CB, ER) on hand on march 19, 2015, when we did our “big books” action. they soon circulated footage on YouTube. this was helpful in court, showing not only our “books”, but our obviously un-disorderly deportment throughout the action and the arrest.
~ Each evening of the trial there were dozens of supporters. they came from NYC, Ithaca, Buffalo, Albany, Rochester, New England and points in between. The jury might well have been favorably impressed by the community there on our behalf. not to mention the presence in court of JR’s six-year old grandson and DB’s two youngsters – all cute as a button.
~ A word about the prosecutor: unlike some of the past De Witt prosecutors, ADA Albert played fair. He indulged in neither cheap tricks nor pandering rhetoric, nor was he obstructionist or hostile. He even allowed us to show the jury ten oversize color photos of the “big books” action and of victims and relatives of drone victims.
~ ADA Albert’s only witness was Hancock Master Sergeant Ramsey who has been a prosecution witness at probably all of our trials. Ramsey seems to be a pretty straight shooter; we’ve remained on good terms with him over the years. Even after he testifies, he generally stays to watch the rest of our trial. Who knows? Maybe this career military man has been able to hear our testimony.
~ Others were arrested with us on march 19, 2015. but JO and BR, with the additional charge of violating their Order of Protection, a bogus misdemeanor, still await a trial date. it’ll be interesting to see if this jury’s verdict will dispose the DA and Hancock to drop that charge. Their next court hearing is march 9.
. . . . . . . stay tuned.
Stop U.S. drone warfare now
An unmanned U.S. Predator drone flies over Kandahar Air Field, southern Afghanistan, on a moon-lit night.(Photo: AP)
I just spent two months as a prisoner in Jamesville Penitentiary.
I was jailed for my involvement in an April 28, 2013, solemn funeral procession at Hancock Air Force drone base in Syracuse. I joined 30 others to carry the message to “stop the killing.” Hancock’s 174th Attack Wing of the New York State National Guard flies missiles and drops bombs via satellite from drones thousands of miles from Syracuse. The targets are suspected “terrorists” somewhere in the Middle East.
Stanford University Law School’s International Human Rights Conflict Resolution Clinic and New York University Law School”s Global Justice Clinic, working independently with The Bureau for Independent Journalism, spent years collecting data on U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan. The findings are grim. In their report titled “Living Under Drones,” only 2 percent of the killings have been confirmed “suspected terrorists” by the law schools’ study.
Thousands have been killed, thousands wounded — body parts scattered in cities and countryside by our killer drones. There are no estimates of psychological damage to millions who live under drones 24/7. The killings by American drone missiles may be the best recruitment tool for more Middle East terrorists.
My “crime” was being a nonviolent messenger outside the main gate to Hancock. I was convicted of trespass and obstructing government administration. I was handcuffed and sent to Jamesville Penitentiary in Syracuse. As the oldest prisoner at Jamesville at 79, I was also the only political prisoner — a prisoner of conscience.
Before my sentence, I was offered a plea bargain: Plead guilty and have all charges dropped, or go to trial and face a year and 15 days in Jamesville Penitentiary. As a former high school teacher of Participation in Government classes, I could not say I was guilty of a crime for practicing my First Amendment rights of assembly, speech, press and religion.
Thankfully, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio did not support arresting Wall Street demonstrators during the U.N. Climate Summit in September of this year. “I think the First Amendment is a little more important than traffic,” de Blasio said when asked about disruptions caused by the Wall Street demonstration. “The right of people to make their voices heard, regardless of their views, is a fundamental American value, and we’ll protect that value.”
It should be noted that those of us arrested did not block traffic at Hancock Drone base on April 28, 2013.
The refusal of the DeWitt town court in East Syracuse to recognize First Amendment rights of assembly is akin to the medieval act of killing the messenger of bad news. The insistence of the DeWitt court to collaborate with the military to stop nonviolent protest near the Hancock Attack Wing is in violation of the U.S. Constitution. The DeWitt court order of protection to stay away from the assassination base begs the question: Is there collusion between the DeWitt court and the military to suppress constitutional rights?
Gilroy is a lifetime anti-war activist who has been working with the Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars. He is a resident of Endwell, NY.