Minister threatens Christian pacifists with seven years jail
Federal Defence Minister Robert hill has written a letter to a group of Christian pacifists threatening them with "a maximum penalty of imprisonment for seven years" if they enter the Pine Gap spy base near Alice Springs.
A media release from the Brisbane Catholic Worker movement says that the group - Christians Against ALL Terrorism - received the response to their request to inspect the Pine Gap Spy base near Alice Springs for terrorist activity. Catholic Worker members are part of the group.
The pacifists expressed their belief that blowing apart children with a bomb dropped from a plane was just as much an act of terrorism as doing it with a suicide bomb. They then informed the Senator they intended to attempt to inspect the base with or without his permission, as numerous reports to the National Terrorism Hotline over three years had failed to secure any action against the activities at Pine Gap
The group wrote to Defence minister Robert Hill quoting the British Lancet report which claimed over 100,000 civilians had been killed in Iraq since 2003, the biggest single cause of death being the US led bombing campaign. They also quoted defence expert Michael McKinley from the Australian National University, who claimed Pine Gap would have a major role in providing targeting information for that bombing campaign.
The majority of the group of eight people who hail from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Cairns will leave Brisbane on Tuesday and travel to Alice Springs in a van powered by used cooking oil. They will carry with them hundreds of signatures of people who support their action.They will have information stalls and visit other bases on the way travelling via Rockhampton and Cairns.
Senator Hill threatens Christian pacifists with seven years jail (Brisbane Catholic Worker 25/11/05)
LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Pit Stop Ploughshares
War On Trial
Peace by Peace, Cairns
Trial of Christians collapses after judge linked to US President (Ekklesia 8/11/05)
Australian Peace Activist Takes Stand for Disarming U.S. War Plane in Ireland (Perth.Indymedia.org 4/11/05)
Military Spending Exceeds Disarmament, Says Vatican (Zenit 13/10/05)
Holy See's Statement to U.N. on Disarmament (Zenit 13/10/05)
25 Nov 2005