Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Hancock AFB Commander requests "order of protection" from anti-drone activists

The truth hurts. At least, apparently for Colonel Earl Evans, commander of the Hancock Air National Guard Base in DeWitt. As reported by the Syracuse Post-Standard, Col. Evans has applied for and been granted a restraining order against 17 anti-drone peace activists from the Syracuse area, in retaliation for their peaceful demonstrations against the civilian carnage resulting in countries around the world from U.S. drone strikes.
Col. Evans has requested protection from 17 activists against
 their approaching Hancock AFB to protest its role as a drone
 base; a luxury unavailable to people whose lives are
threatened by drones piloted under Evans' command.

This move by Evans comes in the wake of ongoing demonstrations across the street from the base, and a recent protest in which 37 activists were arrested for blocking one of the base's gates. As noted by local drone resister John Hamilton, the irony is palpable:

 "Clearly the intent is to keep us away from his ‘place of employment’, the military base.  However, he is a government official, and the first amendment doesn’t say, ‘you can petition your government once… and after that it’s a felony.’
This is of course a pure perversion of the restraining order laws, and therefore illegal in itself.  Judge Benack, who issued these, and Judge Jokl who is enforcing them should, and soon will be ashamed of themselves.

Having the full force of the $700 billion a year US military to protect him is, apparently, to our trembling commander, but a weak shadow.  The plaintiff commander also requires the full force of the sheriff’s department, and the local courts to let him sleep easy.
Makes you wonder, doesn’t it, why his sleep is so fitful and his days troubled.  Makes you wonder why he’s so frightened of peaceful us citizens who stand before him only with signs and truth.
The killer  drones this commander commands are actually completely illegal, immoral, and are, according to the UN, undermining all  human law, by ignoring laws against extrajudicial  (outside the law) killings.  These are very serious offenses against common sense and common morality. Indeed as law-abiding citizens we are required by US law, customary international law, and the long established Nuremberg principles, to stop these illegal activities wherever they occur."
Local activists targeted by the order have filed a lawsuit in the state supreme court against Donald Benack, Jr. and Robert Jokl, Jr., the DeWitt judges who made the choice to threaten these citizens with felony charges for exercising their first amendment rights in protesting the unjust and illegal killing being perpetrated by drones in the name of the "war on terror."
Demonstrators peacefully submit to arrest after blocking the
 gate at Hancock Air National Guard Base.

April Days of Action Against Drones continue with the Convergence for Action and Inspiration against drone warfare in Syracuse this weekend. which will conclude with a return to demonstrate at the gates of Hancock Air National Guard Base!

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