Rallies at BAE, Endicott and Lockheed Martin, Owego
by Jack Gilroy, VFP Chapter 90 Broome County NY
We had two good events to expose war merchants yesterday, September 9. First, at BAE in Endicott, NY followed by our action at Lockheed Martin in Owego, NY. We congratulated both companies for taking tiny baby steps to convert from systems that destroy to systems that improve mankind and our fragile earth. (electric buses at BAE and a Post Office improvement system by Lockheed Martin)
Certified letters were sent to the CEO’s of both BAE and Lockheed earlier in the week. Our attempt to hand deliver letters to BAE and Lockheed were halted by security. At BAE by men who said they were not employees of BAE. They were defenders of private property and not even a shoe tip was to touch the property of BAE. all security at BAE wore shoulder patches identifying them as Black Rhino. At BAE, thirty six people held banners or signs, our VFP flag flew with VFP members from Syracuse, Corning, Albany and Binghamton who joined in solidarity with UpState Drone Action and Peace Action.
Following our sidewalk demonstration and comments broadcasted via our public address system to BAE employes asking them to demand work that gives them purpose to help not harm the earth; we drove twelve miles down the road from BAE (which has claimed on their website to be the #3 arms producer in the world) to the undisputed #1 weapons maker, Lockheed Martin. We stood with our banners before the signs and logos of this giant Pentagon contractor knowing that elevated cameras would soon alert the people inside. This time, it was not a private security team that was dispatched but rather Tioga County Sheriff Department deputies who gently and diplomatically said we would have to get off the private property of Lockheed Martin. We had time to slowly speak to the young officer as our cameras photographed our folks and banners with Lockheed Martin as the backdrop.
When we drove into Lockheed Martin to try to deliver our letter, their own security team stopped us and called the Tioga Sheriff’s Department to turn us around and escort us back to our staging area across the road. Likely a letter of warning will be sent to the three of us, including the TV cameraman who was in the car as we attempted to deliver a letter to the tightly guarded officials at Owego NY Lockheed Martin.
Both events were exhilarating as we exposed the war makers. Good TV coverage and lots of photographs to circulate.
This is the TV coverage (Vera Sdroggins will have her YouTube piece available soon) offered on two national affiliate channels locally Veterans for Peace holds protests at BAE and Lockheed Martin
I had to wait about five seconds to play this link first covered by an ad.