DEMOCRACY NOW – Interview with Kathy Kelly on eve of “Creech 14” Drone Trial in Las Vegas Nevada, USA

From Ciaron O’Reilly

Democracy Now Interview with Kathy Kelly on eve of “Creech 14” Drone Trial in Las Vegas Nevada, USA


* Link to today’s Democracy Now pre-trial interview with Kathy Kelly

* New Youtube clips from Kathy Kelly’s July 29th visit to DM

* “The Indefensible Drones: A Ground Zero Reflection” by Kathy Kelly published in Common Dreams

Updates on trial to follow…..

Sept 13 – Pretrial interview with Kathy Kelly on Democracy Now…evada

4 thoughts on “DEMOCRACY NOW – Interview with Kathy Kelly on eve of “Creech 14” Drone Trial in Las Vegas Nevada, USA

  1. Ciaron O'Reilly says:

    Las Vegas “Creech 14” Drone Trial report

    Fourteen anti-war activists may have made history today in a Las Vegas courtroom when they turned a misdemeanor trespassing trial into a possible referendum on America’s newfound taste for remote-controlled warfare.

    The so-called Creech 14, a group of peace activists from across the country, went on trial this morning for allegedly trespassing onto Creech Air Force Base in April 2009.

    From the start of today’s trial, prosecutors did their best to keep the focus on whether the activists were guilty of allegations they illegally entered the base and refused to leave as a way to protest the base’s role as the little-known headquarters for U.S. military operations involving unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, over Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan.

    But a funny thing happened on the way to prosecutors’ hope for a quick decision.

    Appearing as witnesses for the Creech 14 today were some of the biggest names in the modern anti-war movement: Ramsey Clark, former U.S. attorney general under President Lyndon Johnson; Ann Wright, a retired U.S. Army colonel and one of three former U.S. State Department officials who resigned on the eve of the 2003 invasion of Iraq; and Bill Quigley, legal director for the New York City-based Center for Constitutional Rights.

    By the time those three witnesses finished their testimony as to why they believed the activists had protested at the base, they’d managed to convince Las Vegas Township Justice Court Judge William Jansen to delay his verdict for four months — and had managed clearly to frustrate prosecutors.…39790

  2. Judge Decides to Devote 4 Months to Studying Issues snd Testimony Presented in “Creech 14” Case

    The “Creech 14” went to trial on September 14, 2010 in Clark County
    Regional Court in Las Vegas, Nevada. The case originated during a week
    of demonstrations and vigils in April 2009, when the activists entered
    Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs to highlight the serious
    injustice of the U.S. military’s use of drones, or Unmanned Aerial
    Vehicles (UAVs) in Afghanistan and elsewhere. Crews at Creech control
    the drones used in these expanding wars, including killing civilians
    in remote controlled assassination attacks. The protesters were
    charged with trespassing. Judge William Jansen scheduled the verdict
    for January 27, 2011
    Judge Jansen allowed the pro-se defendants to call three expert
    witnesses – former Attorney General Ramsey Clark, retired Col. and
    former Embassy Official Ann Wright, and Bill Quigley, Legal Director
    of the Center for Constitutional Rights.

    “Targeted assassinations by Predator and Reaper drones,” said
    defendant Renee Espeland, “must be catapulted into the court of public
    opinion. I am bound by the law of our land that makes it my duty to
    stop the killing of civilians and to protect U.S. soldiers being
    ordered to perform illegal acts.”

    The judge limited the defense to questions strictly pertaining to the
    charge of trespass. However, through carefully crafted questions, the
    defendants were able to extract several key points from their

    – Intentional killing is a war crime, as embodied in U.S. constitutional law.

    – Drone strikes by U.S. and coalition forces kill a disproportionate
    number of civilians.

    – People have the right, even the duty, to stop war crimes.

    – According to the Nuremberg principles, individuals are required to
    disobey domestic orders that cause crimes against humanity.

    Defendant Brian Terrell delivered the group’s closing statement.
    Referring to earlier mention of a classic metaphor used in cases
    invoking the necessity defense, he depicted a house on fire, with a
    baby trapped inside. “The house is on fire; the baby is in the house,”
    said Terrell, “We fourteen are ones who see the smoke, and will not
    allow a ‘no trespass’ sign to stop us from reaching burning children.”
    Terrell was speaking about the civilian deaths caused by U.S. drones
    in Afghanistan.

    The Creech 14 include Fr. John Dear, SJ; Dennis DuVall; Renee
    Espeland; Judy Homanich; Kathy Kelly; Fr. Steve Kelly, SJ; Mariah
    Klusmire; Brad Lyttle; Libby Pappalardo; Sr. Megan Rice, SHCJ; Brian
    Terrell; Eve Tetaz; Fr. Louie Vitale, OFM; and Fr. Jerry Zawada, OFM.
    Espeland, Fr. Kelly, Klusmire, Rice, Terrell, Vitale and Zawada all
    live in or volunteer regularly with various Catholic Worker
    communities around the country


    Las Vegas Sun Photo and Report…rial/

  3. Drones on trial, and a judge listens
    by Tom Roberts on Sep. 18, 2010

    Drones have raised to a new level the detachment with which modern warfare can be conducted. Operated remotely from great distances away, drones are lifeless, indiscriminate killing machines. They’ve been responsible for countless civilian deaths and a concomitant rising tide of anger against the United States in Pakistan. What follows is an intriguing account of the recent trial of 14 activists who trespassed at an Air Force Base in Nevada protesting the use of drones.

    By Jerica Arents
    September 17, 2010

    I received an education yesterday.

    I wasn’t in a classroom. I wasn’t laboring over a paper, strategizing in a small group, poring over a textbook or hustling across campus. I was sitting as a spectator in the front row of Judge Jansen’s courtroom in Clark County, Nevada.

    Fourteen peace activists were on trial for trying to hand-deliver a letter to the base commander at Creech Air Force Base in April of 2009. Their letter laid out concerns about usage of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, or drones, for surveillance and combat purposes in Afghanistan. The Creech 14 believe that the usage of remote aerial vehicles to hunt down and kill people in other lands amounts to targeted assassination and is prohibited by international and U.S. law. Soldiers carrying M16s stopped them after they had walked past the guardhouse at the base entrance and a few hours later Nevada state troopers handcuffed the Creech 14 and took them into custody.

    The next day, they were charged with trespass to a military facility and released. The charges were later dropped, then reinstated. Defendants, upon learning of a September 14, 2010 court date, had ten months to plan for their trial. They decided to represent themselves pro se and to call, as expert witnesses, former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, Colonel Ann Wright and Professor Bill Quigley, the Legal Director of the Center for Constitutional Rights. What were the chances that a Las Vegas court that normally handles traffic violations and minor offenses would admit three expert witnesses to testify on behalf of defendants charged with a simple trespass? Slim to zero in the view of most observers.

    Article continued….

  4. PDF – U.S. Justice Dept. A Review into F.B.I.’s Investigations of Certain Domestic Advocacy Groups…0.pdf

    The New American
    Feds Slammed for Spying on Anti-war Groups, Lying…lying

    Boston Globe
    Reedbaiting 2002-06…lying

    U.S. Catholic
    Catholic Worker groups subject if faulty FBI probe, says new report…eport

    Huffington Post
    Inspector General Criticism Doesn’t Faze F.B.I. Raids on Midwestern Anti-War Activists….html

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