And we’ve just been told by the Australian Defence Forces that the Americans are now arriving in greater numbers than they first told us.
By June l8, 20,000 American soldiers and sailors will all be in place to commence bombing and blowing the living daylights out of our beautiful and sacred land of Australia.
Personally, writing this now, knowing firsthand the beauty and quiet sanctity of Shoalwater Bay which I’ve sailed into twice, the amazing biodiversity that it encompasses makes me want to cry as I think what this country means to me, what this country has given to me over the years and that there are so few of our fellow Australians who know or seem to care that this is happening.
Twenty thousand US soldiers and sailors in nuclear powered aircraft carriers, destroyers and submarines coming from active duty in the Gulf, leave off killing innocent Iraqis (‘collateral damage’) and other parts of the world to train with our decent young men and women in the ADF to refine how to be more effective killers. On Australian soil.
Live aerial bombings, ship to shore naval bombardments, land based artillery firings, Abrams tanks, landmines, amphibious landings, underwater depth charges let off where the largest colony of dugongs on the east coast feed and the endangered Loggerhead and Green turtles breed in the mouth of Shoalwater Bay.
Nuclear subs sliding inside the Great Barrier Reef (when we’re told that the Reef is dying) where there are 26 species of whales and dolphins. The subs will be using frequency sonar at levels millions of times greater than would burst the human eardrum. Old American warships scuttled in the waters around the Reef straffed by US Airforce jets hammering them with rockets and bombs to show their “good Aussie mates” how effective are their latest laser guided missiles.
B52 bombers, Stealth bombers and B1 bombers flying non-stop from Guam to drop their massive tonnage of bombs from five kilometres high on the acquifer ridden and ancient desert landscape near Katherine, NT - against the ignored wishes of the traditional owners - fuelling in midair before flying back to base.
Part of their training no doubt to simulate a similar run from the US to bomb Iran.
On our ancient ochred desert. “Rubbish country only inhabited by blackfellas anyway..!”
Don’t worry that the world is melting down from climate change and the oceans of aviation fuel and heavy crude oil their ships will guzzle up to come here from the other side of the world. Don’t worry about the carcinogenic nature of all these heavy metal bombs (even if we can ‘trust’ them on their word not to use depleted uranium bombs) they will explode and will drift on the wind over Australia for up to one thousand kilometres from the drop site.
I believe we have an urgent responsibility to speak up for and ‘defend’ country.
What does it take dear fellow Australians before the immorality of our inaction dawns home to us making us aware that we are complicit in their murder while we say or do nothing?
What can I do I hear you say? Come to Shoalwater Bay and by your presence bear witness and send a strong message to everyone that its not being done in your name.
We will converge on Shoalwater Bay and set up our peace camp at Yeppoon after kicking off the protest with a street demonstration and concert in Brisbane June l6 aimed at grabbing media attention and public interest. We want to steal the PR initiative from the Australian and US military BEFORE their war games and live bombardments start in earnest June l9.
Mark down in your calendar to be in Brisbane the morning of Saturday June l6 ready to take to the streets in a colourful media oriented event. (More about that “street parade with a difference’ in another email). Come join us in Brisbane that night for the Peace Convergence concert and then kick up our heels to let Howard and Bush know that we want to dance to a different beat to ‘the drum of war’.
For the past six months we have been working with 35 coordinators from around the country, having regular phone hookups, now happening on a weekly basis in this final runup to the big protest, organising people in their communities to come. We have close and active involvement with a good group of people at Shoalwater Bay who are so pleased we are coming up in solidarity to support their community. They are there to help us have a good and memorable stay. You’ll even be able to grab a hot shower after a hard day ‘at the barricades’.
Whilst it was a great idea for the environment to hire a train, it was just too expensive to hire it ourselves from Brissie to Rockie. We have the funds of a poor church mouse so far to pull all this off!
However senior cits who can get a pensioner concession are encouraged to take the train to Rockie where buses will pick you up on arrival nightfall June l7 and take you to a hot shower and a friendly welcome at the Yeppoon caravan park.
Those of you who can only come for a few days and want to fly from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, aim to be there around the evening of Thursday June 2l to Sunday dusk June 24 when most actions are likely to take place. A regular bus will take you from the airport at Rockie to Yeppoon. There’s a big night planned in Yeppoon Townhall with the locals Friday night June 22 with speakers including Helen Caldicott and the world premiere screening of “Shoalwater Bay: Weapons Wastedump One Day, World Heritage the Next!” by yours truly.
We know it requires effort for you to get to Brisbane and then onto Yeppoon. We know most of our fellow Australians don’t feel they have a say anymore in our political life so why care? We know the majority of Australians are ‘asleep’, struggling to pay their mortgage (aren't we all..?) or pay their credit card debt, brainwashed to shop-till-they-drop rather than to struggle to protect this country of ours which has, by our birthright as Australians, given us so much and now needs our help to protect it.
NOW is the time to tell us the numbers that are coming from your community because you can imagine the logistics of an exercise like this so we need to know now who is coming, not on the day of your arrival up there.
Coordinators, get people up off their ‘bums’ and motivated! Show them the Vieques dvd and the mess that wonderful island turned into after the US military took over for its weapons testing. Same as they did in the Phillipines, Okinawa. This is our wonderful Australia these war criminal killers now want to despoil. The same military who tortured and held David Hicks and countless others for years without a proper trial while telling us what paragons of justice they are and how we all should embrace the ‘democratic’ American way .
Now they want to destroy our homeland and have our nation sucked more into their adventurist wars. Don’t fantasise about a Revolution in Venezuela. Make your own peaceful Revolution here. Now!
For the youth in our ranks romanticising about the past, this could well rank as your Woodstock, your anti-Vietnam war or Jabiluka protest. Be there or be square! Bring your guitars, your drums and voices. Lots of campfire camaraderie and tales to tell. But no hotheads please! Only people who are prepared to respect the group decisions and peaceful, non violent actions should come.
Hopefully with me, you will see that this is an important one as we bear witness to our fellow Australians to treasure what we have and not let our political masters throw it away. This military madness has to stop. Not in our name.
See you all in Brisbane for that ‘demo with a difference’ Saturday morning, June l6 (a few celebs to rub shoulders with joining us), at the Peace Convergence concert that night and then at Yeppoon caravan park and Shoalwater Bay. You're sure to find a community of like-minded souls who will warm the cockles of your hearts!
yours in solidarity,
Peace Convergence 17-24 June
The train travelling from Brisbane to Rockhampton that people may like to travel on is the Sunlander:
Departing Sunday June 17 at 8.55am arriving Rockhampton 8pm. (transport will be organised to collect people to take to Yeppoon).
Other trains are available.
To learn more or to make a booking contact Queensland Rail 131617.
Kristy is taking bookings for a bus leaving Brisbane on Sunday 17 June. Please email or call her on 0421 323 839.
For more information about Talisman Sabre 2007 and the Peace Convergence visit www.peaceconvergence.com or email info[at]peaceconvergence.com
stop the exercises | close the bases | end the wars
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