Monday, July 27, 2009

Last Two Activists Hand Themselves In at End of Exercises


You can call: Yulanji Bardon 0432036871 for further information

TWO ANTI WAR ACIVISTS remained for 11 days in the Shoalwater Military Exercise Area until last Sunday, officially the last day of the joint Australia-US exercises. The two, Yulanji Bardon and Emily Nielsen, turned themselves in to Range Control and were escorted from the premises by military police, under arrest for trespass.

The presence of Ms Bardon and Ms Nielsen and 5 other activists prevented the live fire phase of the exercises from being reinstated. They were able to meet their goal of staying till the end of the Talisman Sabre Exercises which represented the largest training in ‘interoperability’ between the US and Australia.

Emily Nielsen [19] said: "These exercises are not just a ten-day long game of laser tag as Brigadier Bob Brown and the media would have us believe. They represent Australia joining the United States in the illegal invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan where thousands of civilians have been killed."

Ms Bardon and Ms Neilsen lived on rations and slept in a tent in the Western and southern sectors of the area while Jim Dowling and Culley Palmer had stayed in the Eastern area. Their presence posed a difficulty for the military who were forced to limit live firing and conduct a ‘quiet’ invasion. They dodged helicopters, military dogs and avoided thousands of military personnel refuting the idea of the ‘all-pervasive security state’.

"The ideas that the military offers protection and that terrorism can be overcome with military means are in glaring need of revision. " Ms Bardon said. "If two young women with a compass and limited ‘tactical experience’ can get away with sight-seeing in a military base over the course of eleven days without detection, there may need to be an inquiry into just how effective these training exercises actually are."

Yulanji and Emily entered the base on the 16th July with 5 other activists in two groups: the Jaegerstatter 3 and the Grana 4.

5 of the group have been arrested and subject to charges of trespass with notices to appear. Yulanji and Emily have bail conditions not to go near military installations.

Bryan Law has a notice to appear in court on 7th August. Mark Palmer has a notice to appear later in the month.

Jake Bolton appeared on Friday 24th pleaded guilty and was fined $200.

Jim Dowling and Culley Palmer were not arrested but walked out of the area on Thursday.

Another 4 Christian nonviolent activists, Margaret Pestorius, Jarrod Saul McKenna, Jessica Morrison and Simon Moyle [the Bonhoeffer 4], were fined $2500 in an earlier action to stop the exercises. They were discovered by men playing ‘insurgents’.

Call Yulanji Bardon 0432036871 for further information

For an overview of nonviolent actions held in relation to Talisman Sabre call:

Margaret Pestorius 0403214422, Bryan Law 0403049566

No comments: