Uproot nuclear missiles in our backyard

Uproot not upgrade nuclear missiles in our backyard
Vigil to commemorate Trinity atomic test blast, July 16, 1945
Nuclear SILO N-8, Weld County, 1pm Saturday, July 14, 2007
(CITIZENS FOR PEACE IN SPACE carpool starts at PPJPC at 9:30am)

From Bill Sulzman of Citizens for Peace In Space:

The nuclear non proliferation treaty (1970) and the International Court of Justice opinion (1996) both call for the dismantling of all nuclear arsenals and the prevention of new nuclear weapons anywhere.

U.S. policy ignores both principles. Nuclear silo N-8 in Weld County should be uprooted not upgraded. Ranchers and farmers know the scourge that weeds represent. For good things to grow bad ones have to be eliminated and replaced. The 49 Minuteman III missiles in our state and the other 451 spread across parts of Wyoming, Nebraska, Montana and North Dakota are illegal, immoral and noxious for the whole world. They need to be eliminated to restore the integrity of our state and our country.

Join us on July 14 at Nuclear silo N-8 in Weld County, the site of the 2002 Sacred Earth and Space Plowshares action. Help us express our gratitude to Sisters Ardeth, Carol and Jackie and to Fr Carl Kabat who remains imprisoned for a similar action in North Dakota last year. We will also remember the Trinity atomic blast which occurred July 16, 1945.

The vigil at the silo will start at 1:00. We will leave in a carpool from the Justice and Peace Office, 214 E. Vermijo Colorado Springs at 9:30 AM on Saturday July 14. For more details call 389 0644. We will have maps for those who are driving.

13 thoughts on “Uproot nuclear missiles in our backyard

  1. Let me get this straight? Our government is involved in killing and mass mayhem in multiple regions around the globe, and the local ‘peace’ community has trouble in getting a since huddle or two of local protest here going in Colorado Springs about much of anything? The US killings in Colombia, Somalia, Afghanistan, Haiti are all pretty much off the radar screens of our peace activism entirely. We do not hold our government accountable for much of anything, including not trying to hold an agent of our local government accountable for firing an antiwar Iraqi vet, who has been pretty much about the only person in this forsaken community who has engaged actively and consistently in peaceful protest recently?

    Yet there will be a car or two to ferry a few CS souls far across state to a field with a missile silo? This is just spinning the wheels of local inactivity and throwing smoke about instead of leadership. It is not a substitute for creating real local protest. It is in many ways, a misuse of activist time and energy.

    Further, this is another example of how projects are made by a some J&P clique or other, without any real discussion at all. The decision to go out to this missile silo is essentially back up for 3 nuns, who got themselves deliberately arrested several years ago at this same missile silo locale. Getting yourself deliberately arrested is a poor strategy for long term mobilization of the public against war and militarism. The nuns and priests who do this need to stop doing it, since it just creates themselves as ‘martyrs’, and not genuine public mobilization.

  2. Or would it be better to just ignore the buildup and it will go away?

    Remember, right now Our Stupid Leader is facing off against Russia AND China AND India AND (this part hurts him bad) NATO because he wants to put up the Missile Shield in Europe in anticipation of the Unholy War he’s declaring against Iran.

    Some acts of martyrdom are just plain stupid, like blowing up a bus along with yourself.

    Or ignoring a buildup to Nuclear Holocaust.

    How much more fucked up would the world be now without the almost unnoticed acts of martyrdom in our long collective history?

    or the “Commit a Random Act of Kindness Today” movement in all it’s forms and manifestations through that same history?

    How much more or less effective will that be than our demonstrations, marches and vigils?

    The constant counter of War by peaceful actions…

  3. Don’t get me wrong, Jonah. The situation of having nuclear weapons everywhere and the resultant radioactivity that comes from their production and use is an important issue and deserves protest. I am not objecting to doing that at all. My comment refers mainly to other issues involved.

    1) I think it wrong to build and focus activities without any discussion by the membership of a group in support of doing so before hand. The Justice and Peace Commission has a long history of doing just that and pushing for group activity based on clique-made decisions instead. The result is that religious pacifists are making their activities the only activities that come forth from this group.

    These folk ask for others, with other political outlooks than their own to show up and support them, but are strikingly absent in showing up when other activities than their own are encouraged or initiated.

    In this case, I decline to travel across state and back all day to a missile silo, when I have found it impossible to get the same people to walk a block or two from their offices to do a street vigil in this city that they live in.

    2) I am against deliberately getting arrested, which is the core of what ‘civil disobedience’ is all about. IMO, it is also the core of what police would like for protesters to do, which is get themselves arrested.

    We can see how this can mess things up with the example of the St Pat’s Day police attack. Because some of those that participated in this event glorify civil disobedience, the media and the police can convince much of the public that antiwar people were literally asking ‘for it’.

    It is hard to defend a group, when some parts of it are talking about how great it is to be arrested, another part of the same group is acting like they think it glorious to be facing legal charges to ‘have their day in court’, and yet another section of the same group feels that it is all a ‘misunderstanding’ that should be wished away.

    That leaves the general public totally to the side. The media, the police, and the J&P itself all appear to be welcoming contact with the police. Contact that the general public certainly would not want to have in case they were ever able to bring themselves to protest the war and what’s happening to the country. The public looks to not being victimized by the police, yet the ‘peace’ community appears to celebrate such victimization and to actively look for it.

    3? The last issue is, should our efforts go to help those who deliberately get themselves arrested, while totally ignoring those who are victimized without their own intent to become martyrs? Why travel cross state to help in the defense of nuns who got themselves deliberately arrested, when we ignore
    the case of a local vet who was fired from his job shortly after starting to speak out?

  4. Tony, pardon me if I disagree with you and your numeric pointers.

    Whereas, the PPJPC may indeed be a local group (and none of my business), I always believed (hoped) Not My Tribe – as a website – was designed to reach outside of sheer Colorado Springs issues.

    If the St. Paddy’s incident is to mean anything to the rest of the country (and it should) – it’s meaning is in that we are more than just a locality and that standards of justice apply to everyone or no one.

    You are absolutely right that misplanning causes confusion and alienates. I still recall many decrees against patrons, even contributors to this site – based on a one for all principal – the loudest of those decrees being made by you.

    When the editors first posted this I was rather excited that NMT would finally expand in creating some awareness that landed somewhere between a third world country and Colorado Springs.

    You are right – there is great political malaise – and it breeds resentment and sometimes even contempt.

  5. (the refresh button posted a partial response – sorry – I’ll continue my response to Tony’s dismay.)

    1. Tony, you are right – political malaise can create contempt. Yet – if belief is reduced to “wash my back and I’ll wash yours” – it somehow lessens the overall concept of “solidarity”, does it not?

    2./3. I, too, am seriously against deliberately getting arrested. And your comments about such distinctions to civil disobedience versus criminal activity are exact, right, and most valuable. But as the ACLU is defending CPIS, I think it’s important to emphasize the very distinctions you have made as why to attend this.

    I do not wish to debate whether religious “martydom” is moral or immoral. I do wish – like you, Tony, that adults would learn to distinguish the differences. IF the media wants to sweep the peaceniks in as hippies, the hippies in as addicts, the addicts in as mafia, religious zeal as criminal (less it elects a president), etc, etc. IF the POPULOUS can be so easily MISLED to believe that one is the same as all – as you are so worried – that is EXACTLY what is wrong. And I hope that is why the ACLU would defend such distinctions, including the exaggerated jail sentence which was imposed upon criminal vandalism.

    In your reply – you have jumped from discussing Arms Reduction to the actions of 3 or 4 people.

    Should St. Paddy’s be the influence to decide whether the war is right or wrong?

    If I attended this rally – my intent would be to DISTINGUISH that law abiding citizens CAN discern the difference between those who announce an intent to break a law from those who protest something larger and more insideous than the symbolic violation of a chain link fence.

    I don’t blaim you in the least after St. Paddy’s for feeling that no one, nor the masses can make such a distinction. But prior to that – I thought THAT one facet of recognition – justice and voice for all – was the fundamental part of supporting unified tolerance and peace.

    I’ve been in front of these missle silos when no one was arrested. If a few get knowingly arrested – I can appreciate making the distinguishments clear. And, once again, I sincerely appreciate you making those facits clear to all.

    So – now you’ve raised the question that I must ask. Is this a memorial for protesters who’s passion “went too far” or is it sincerely yet another remembrance of a political war machine that most prefer not to recognize or negotiate?

    I’d like to believe the latter.

    Far too many hatchets to raise then bury if it’s the former…. but even the former, at the very least, deserves the recognition of passion over indifference.

    We can defend the fence while opposing the missiles. And still respect those who felt the fence less worthy – even IF not our own methodologies or beliefs.

    Hell, Tony, I was hoping you’d attend just so I could shake your hand for your efforts made in Springs and Denver area! Then you dismiss this as “wasted energy”?!?

    I hope many people show up. It’ll keep a few from feeling so powerless that they would do something so foolish as to try to stand up alone.

    For those of us outside of Colorado Springs – I’d LOVE to hear more whether this event is a clique or a genuine effort. It’s a question I asked before. Perhaps you can shed light, Tony?

    And Jonah – thanks for distinguishing martydom by levels. Even holding a sign (instead of lounging in a swimming pool) could be considered martrydom. Breaking the law is foolish. Martrydom? It’s a word slur on passion and ego versus method (almost always).

    Thanks to the editor for the announcement. Damn the missiles.

  6. I figure it will work out, something good will come of it… or we are all well and properly screwed… doesn’t seem to be much in between the two outcomes.

    Maybe it’s just the Irish thing to do, you know, shame somebody by dying on his doorstep…

    I ought to visit the Jonah House website, at least. It’s been a while.

    For making a distinction between Religion-inspired pacifism and any other brand, I honestly can’t see a difference. I think that people like Phil Berrigan (rest his soul) have it the other way around, a feeling of the deep wrongness of war and killing inspires their religious beliefs. Maybe it’s just the After Midnight Dizziness talking…

    But it looks right and all the words and grammar are in order, so I’ll let it ride.

    Meet you at the barricades.

    Peace Up.

  7. Jonah, there’s more depth in your last comments than I could reply to without knowing you better. But I certainly understand the depths of wondering the sources of faith, and distinctions in between. I do hope you can make the voyage this Saturday.

    Tony, please understand I definitely agree with maximizing efforts. I would quip that at the very least there’s a great t-shirt market in Northern Colorado, but I’m not sure others would accept the humor as self-mockery and not insult.

    I respect that local care IS more efficient and productive to a larger whole. Per rallys in Colorado Springs I’ve asked if my own attendance versus fuel consumption would be that meaningful, and well, to be honest, I haven’t owned a reliable functioning vehicle for the last few years. I’ll be arriving there the same way I arrived in Colorado Springs for my last visit some 6 years ago – using borrowing transportation. Unfortunately, not an economy car but at least – very recycled!

    So – if I don’t get the opportunity to meet NMT bloggers, no problem – I understand that proximity will always be a bit alienating. Nevertheless, I can still thank those who are constructively involved for their efforts at NMT (and more importantly beyond blogging) and I do.

    Obviously the bottom line is we each have local care to impart – as we can – and common skies to hope upon – when we can.

    Regards, and again thanks for the notice. If there are details to be published – they too would be appreciated. Otherwise, I’ll be asking locals here to join in.

    I’m too old to want to repeat another Arms Race, and America is too intelligent to play dumb and numb to its own or the globe. If there is validity to fighting terrorism – the most obvious factor is that it is underground – hidden. A nuclear build up has nothing to do with this war – but wars to come. I remain hopeful that diplomacy and negotiation is a more civilized resolve than the deterent of brute force.

    And, although I would hope it’s obvious, as long as the world has borders, I believe in the U.S. – the people of the U.S. – the great strength of our spirit and intellect – to somehow – continue to establish concepts of justice and safety for all – until the concept of Peaceable Living is no longer just a childish notion or idealism – but a reality to which future generations can look back to admire that humans still evolve.

    We’ve crawled from the mud of history – and there is no direction but to live up to the ideals our forefathers established or the dreams of hope that we hold like candles inside.

    Perhaps some will light a candle for the persecuted, others for a dream of the future. Eleanor Roosevelt lit them to fight off the dark. I really don’t care what brand of matches she used, so long as it’s a wick and not a fuse.


  8. Maybe I am being too negative and harsh, 13th? You and Jonah are both going upstate, and I know one other person, too, that will go to the missile silo. I won’t be going, if for no other reason than that I will have to make another long trip by car on Sunday. But the real reason is that I am just tired of following religious pacifist orientation all the time, when the religious pacifists usually tend to be missing in action in trying to mobilize broader sections of the public.

    Religious pacifists often demonstrate for the right causes, like trying to closer the School of Americas down for just one example. Or trying to end the death penalty as another. These are causes that need to be supported.

    But here’s my problem with the religious pacifist orientation. They don’t reach out to the general public well on issues, since the general public is by nature precluded from becoming religious pacifist, and naturally so. The general public will say that ‘our’ country needs to have a strong ‘defense’, where the message of the religious pacifist is merely to say that ‘all killing is wrong’.

    So this is what happens. The religious pacifist will go around the country trying to witness for ‘peace’, while ignoring building local action that tries to bring in a greater amount of the general public. The religious pacifist knows, in their hearts, that they will never win over the general public. In fact, the religious pacifist feels superior to the general public and wouldn’t have it any other way.

    That’s much of their motivation for why they become and stay protesters. It is individual protest they love (witnessing), and the thought of actually rallying around the general public to their cause is mainly absent. They may talk about ‘ending the war’, but they do not seriously think that they can ever truly halt the war machine.

    It is a mistake in not trying to build a secular antiwar movement instead of a religious oriented one. We need to change society, but the religious pacifists are not truly going to try to do that. They are content in being the minority that continually ‘witnesses’ against power, but they are not truly out to take power away from the powerful. And they will not try to build much of a movement that will get the general public out to their actions.

    The missile silo action is designed to get a small grouping out into a field far away and ‘witness’, and you guys will travel a long way and back to do that. When it comes to trying to build a pro-peace activity in general public view in Colorado Springs, all the J&P pacifists will then suddenly become ‘too busy’ to participate. And the general public will neither travel to the field far away, nor come to a non-existent protest in the city they live in, simply because we are all ‘too busy’, too.

  9. Uh… CITIZENS FOR PEACE IN SPACE meets every first Saturday morning at the offices of the PPJPC. They’re led by Bill Sulzman and anyone’s welcome to participate. CPIS has been working, visibly and invisibly- for the cause of nuclear disarmament for over twenty years, their efficacy of course remains to be determined.

  10. I don’t know from one day to the next if I’m going to be physically able to do anything. It keeps me out of a lot of good stuff, steady employment for one.

    For Christian Pacifism I can offer this one simple defense, the Christian Warmongers won’t listen to anybody who can’t quote the Bible at them.

    They try not to listen to those of us who CAN, either, but that one little wedge has been known to block some HUGE wheels.

    It’s what kept the Klan from lynching Dr King for so long, even though they did get to him in the end.

    But the Klan bullet that ended his life didn’t end his ministry…

    …and now, in places like Ft Worth, Montgomery, Tupelo, Chattanooga,… wearing Klan robes in public is no longer welcomed by the political elites.

    Before the shot was fired, sure. They even had parades on public streets like the St Paddy’s Day, only every one of them would be wearing a robe…

    And the local cops would most likely be IN the parades.

  11. You are right Tony. The general public will NOT travel massive distances to rally for a singular group or cause that’s portrayed or frequently demonstrated as lacking order and/or unified directive. Only a few – who believe beyond the present – would attempt that feat! And if challenges are issued to the inquisitive and hopeful -they too will probably elect to save gas and time – and refocus elsewhere.

    And yes! one valid reason to attend is per “witnessing” – how true!

    I’ve lived in Colorado nearly all my life – on the farmlands and along the front range. Yet, I still continue to meet people who seem to “forget” we have missle pads – or don’t know where NORAD is, who’ve never been to the National Cemetary in Denver, and who only know the directions to amusement parks or how to cleverly (boringly) market their body parts and or pocketbooks.

    So – clearly – it’s Politics 101. Awareness. As there is always a new generation – regardless of age – that at the very least – need a few reminders or some exposure to life beyond Capitalism, sex, and drama queens.

    If I see you there Jonah – I’ll definitely introduce myself as you don’t seem the type to be interested in getting into next year’s “Who’s Who” list. But obviously I’m not attending to meet the people or meat the people – but to meet and further the issue.

    To the rest who may attend and the organizers – John Doe 13 says thank you herein and in advance.


    READERS: Please consider attending a vigil to remember the Trinity atomic test blast, July 16, 1945 – being held at:
    Nuclear SILO N-8, Weld County, 1pm Saturday, July 14, 2007

    Whether the event is held by CPIS, PPJPC, or the Junior Justice League of America matters not.

    What matters is whether you believe that the escaltion of nuclear armaments is necessary in this day and age or not.

    What matters is if you recall Rocky Flats and nuclear waste in public waterstreams and feel it is wrong.

    What matters is if you don’t know what to believe – and are curious to see where the money that could have built that new school or library has been appropriated.

    What matters is that YOU are a CITIZEN, a VOTER, and A HUMAN. Attendence is free as are your own voting decisions throughout the event.

    Whether you agree with the politics or not – please bring your respect to the organizers, and your focus to the information provided.

    More importantly – bring your mind to see and realize – beyond your own little world.

    And the world WILL become larger therein.

    This much, I can guarantee….

  12. Wasn’t able to make it today. On the other other hand, I pulled from Yahoo that Russia has decided to back out of the Nuclear Deals that Mr Chimp has been so blatantly violating…. as of Yesterday.

    Meet you at the barricades, if we aren’t reduced to our component atoms and lightly spread all over the world before then.

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