More on the preemptive arrests outside Hancock AFB, with Media Benjamin, Debra Sweet and Leila Zand
The Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, a group of concerned citizens from Buffalo, Rochester, Ithaca, Binghamton, Syracuse, Rome and Albany, has organized a "Stop Drone War Crimes" weekend to protest the Reaper drones at Syracuse's Hancock Air National Guard Base --- and everywhere. The murderous use of Reaper drones violates international law, but continues to expand. In the year since our last action at Hancock, the use of militarized drones has increased. Drone technology research funding has also increased, as has Pentagon pressure on the FAA to allow drones to fly in U.S. civilian airspace.
Ann Tiffany of Syracuse was arrested after she exited her car and crossed the street a block before the beginning of the fence that surrounds the base.
Those arrested in the street several blocks from the base were put on
a bus for processing. On the bus, they were giving the option to
waive their arrest and leave, but only 1 person did so. Shortly
thereafter, a plainclothes policeman with a Sheriff Dept Jacket drove up
and spoke to the officers in charge. They then took the rest of those
arrested to the DeWitt courthouse for arraignment.
Arrests at the Front Gate to Hancock AFB:
Six people did reach the gate of the base, where they were arrested attempting to deliver an indictment. Those people included Elliott Adams of Veterans for Peace, and Ed Kinane and Rae Kramer of Syracuse. Debra Sweet of World Can't Wait was by the gate talking to the press, who seemed visibly shaken by the overwhelming response of the police to a peaceful walk down the street and efforts to deliver a letter to the gate.
Sandy called as she was leaving to say that the police are
everywhere, and that if you slow down as you drive along, they come up
behind you and shriek their siren and flash their lights to encourage
you to speed up and get out of there. She drove by the front gate of
Hancock AFB on her way out of the area, but all of the people were
gone. A couple of young soldiers and some police were standing around giving one another high fives.
Mission accomplished, I guess.