Activists disrupt military exercise
Place: Rockhampton Barracks
Canoona Road, Rockhampton
Peace activists will this morning block the gates of the Rockhampton barracks as a response to the Talisman Saber military training exercises. The Talisman Saber exercises, which involve 18,000 American and 9,000 Australian troops, are a key part of the Australian – US alliance. The protesters intend to lie on the road, stopping traffic from moving in and out of the barracks and holding up the military training.
While American troops train in Australia for war , former soldier and whistleblower Bradley Manning, is in court facing life in prison for leaking documents that showed American atrocities in Iraq.The American government also continues to pursue Edward Snowden, the National Security Agency employee who leaked details of American intelligence activities that include the PRISM program, which enables the NSA to spy on the internet activity of anybody in the world.
In Guantanamo Bay, the infamous American offshore military prison, detainees have been on hunger strike for over 160 days. Over 100 detainees have been on hunger strike, with 45 being medically force-fed. Many of the inmates have been held there for over 10 years without being charged with any crime. 86 of the 166 prisoners have been cleared for release but are still detained.
The Australian government has been silent about these issues, as it was silent about the totrure of Australian citizens David Hicks and Mamdouh Habib inGuantanamo Bay, both of whom were wrongfully imprisoned there. The Talisman Saber exercises are a symbol of Australia’s unwavering support for America’s military endeavours.
Activist Andy Paine says that the activists are attempting to disrupt the war games, to be active and public in our pursuit of peace. Our governments are spending billions of dollars preparing for the next war in this continual cycle, and the American government continues to abuse human rights and crush those who dare to speak up. Those who believe in peace need to confront the violence of the war machine.”
Activist Graham Dunstan faces court on August 19th for his role in the disarming of an attack helicopter during Talisman Saber 2011.
For more information contact:
Andy Paine 0413 205 154
Robin Taubenfeld 0411 118 737