Pine Gap Protest

5-7 October 2002

Ozpeace

www.ozpeace.net.au


Reports on Protest Action - 13 October 2002

Alice Springs, Northern Territory, AUSTRALIA

This October 5-7 there is a massive action happening up at Pine Gap by people from all over Australia who object to being a part of this US war fighting scheme and who say:

  • we don't want to take part in directing your weapons

  • we don't want to take part in giving you a leg up to dominate space

  • and we don't want to be a nuclear target because of your presence.

Pine Gap is a military spy base for the United States located in the middle of Australia. It has been here since the 1960s and has played a major role in many US military operations (including the Gulf War and the current "War on Terror"). It will be an integral part of the proposed US star wars system enabling the US to dominate and control space. Its very existence on Australian soil makes us complicit in the military strikes of America and makes us a nuclear target. We don't want it. Help us expose it and shut it down this October.

(See also Pine Gap - the enemy within )

desert camp - national convergence on Pine Gap
- major days of action being planned now
- workshops - creative actions - music
- give the land back to the Arrernte people.

Come along and tell the United States we won't play their war games.

Expose the Gap


Pine Gap: the low down for activists and independent media makers:

There are national actions planned for the US military base at Pine Gap just outside of Alice Springs. The dates of the protests are 5,7 October.

There are groups organising from all over the country in small ways and big. Mass transport is being coordinated from most capital cities. Some groups are lining up trainers to assist people to know what they are going to, how to form affinity groups, etc. Medical teams are being organised. Legal teams are being sought. Raging Grannies are tuning up their voice boxes. Students are working out their latest chants. People are looking in the back shed for their tents. Its a happening
thing.

Buses being organised from most states; camping site in town (approx $28 for 3 days camping fees) or possible bush camp options; BYO food, drink, tents, music, theatre, anti-war passion.

Below are some things you may want to check out:

Contacts:

Northern Territory:
Alice Springs c/-ALEC:
ph: (08) 8952 4686 or emmaq@octa4.net.au : contact Emma King
there are activists working towards these actions in Darwin but they do not currently have the capacity to be contacted directly.

South Australia:
Australian Peace Committee - Adelaide (coordinating transport)
ph: (08) 8332 3461 or r-grayle@msn.com.au : contact Irene Gale
or contact Dimity Hawkins (FoE): dimityhawk@optusnet.com.au
or at actions: 0419 032 896

Victoria:
OzPeace (Melbourne)
ph: 0402 246 491 until September 26 or jacob@ozpeace.net : contact Jacob Grech
or at actions: 0418 332 080

New South Wales:
Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition - Sydney (coordinating buses in Sydney)
ph: (02) 9212 0800 or peace@mira.net : contact Hannah Middleton or Denis Doherty
or at actions: 0418 290 663 or 0418 668 098

ACT - Canberra:
Dan at the A.N.U. Environment Collective
ph: (02) 61259869
or contact Benjo Keaney
kean666@hotmail.com

Western Australia:
Anti-Nuclear Alliance of WA (Perth) ANAWA (coordinating buses and training in Perth)
contact: Jo Vallentine, Judy Blyth or Scott Ludlam
Farida Iqbal: do_the_bim@hotmail.com
ph: (08) 9272 4252 (Jo); (08) 9381 6293 (Judy)
or at actions: 0417 123 774 (Scott); 0408 950 472 (Farida)

Northern NSW
ph: (02) 6685 8410

Queensland:
Brisbane
ph: (07) 3359 1933 or 0412 057 240

2. camping and other accommodation for the protests:

Where are we staying?: there are many accommodation options in Alice Springs. But to clarify, here's the go for the "official" protest situation from my reading:

There is a central Bush Camp and a Town Camp being organised for the protests. Different state organisers are making different arrangements for their bus loads. For example, the buses from Melbourne and Adelaide are organised to take people to the Bush Camp, and the buses from Sydney are going to the Town Camp.  For those who wish to stay in the Town Camp, this will be in established camping grounds attached to the Airport Motel (formerly known as The Gap Review Resort). Their number is 08-8952 6611. Bookings essential (costs around $30 for three days?). For the Bush Camp there may be a small cost to assist with supplies - to be confirmed. If you wish to book in there or have further questions, let the Alice Springs coordinating office know: (08) 8952 4686. Emma from the Alice office has asked that any mass travellers inform the Alice organisers of where their mob will be staying as there are limitations on the numbers who can fit in both the Bush and Town camps .

But you are welcome to make other accommodation arrangements in Alice Springs instead if you wish. Organising alternative accommodation is your own responsibility however.There are also other motels and back packer accommodation in Alice Springs.  One alternative to look up if you want other options is: http://www.ntholidays.com/nt_te_accomSearch.asp . Please note, organisers are not responsible for finding individuals suitable accommodation - this is DIY stuff.

3. established e-groups working on this now:

OzPeace: this website (see below) has a subscriber section which allows you to get regular (but not flooding) emails about Pine Gap and other security issues. It will probably be the primary information dissemination tool organisers use to get the messages out to general public or interested people in the lead up, but is not as yet a major organising body. If you are keen to keep in touch but don't want too many emails or to be focussed on organising just yet, this is the one to
join!

Defending Peace: this group was set up over a year ago to start working towards Pine Gap and on nuclear weapons and other security matters. It has been small with only peace and anti-nuke activists who are already working on the issues involved, but has since broadened slightly. If you are interested in working full on on the protest for October and want to be in touch with those who are doing that around the country, this is the one to approach about joining.

4. get the propaganda

Australian Anti-Bases Campaign Coalition (AABCC) in Sydney have produced a full colour pamphlet about Pine Gap - if you want copies to distribute write to them at: peace@mira.net and let them know how many and where to mail them to. By early May over 20,000 of these had been distributed nationally through peace and environment networks.

Friends of the Earth (FOE) have a pamphlet called: "Star Wars 2020" which explains missile defence and advertises the protest action at Pine Gap. PDF - can download and print off - A4 double sided leaflet. Available soon on the FoE web site: www.foe.org.au (National Campaigns section or see link below)

Medical Association for Prevention of War (MAPW) have just released missile defence briefings and some members are planning to attend. All information and html & PDF files of the factsheets are on the web site.

There are two collaborative (non-group specific) pamphlets available also:

  1. "21st Century Star Wars - Talking Points on National Missile Defence and Australia's role through Pine Gap the US Military base outside of Alice Springs" , has great explanations about Missile Defence and Pine Gap from AABCC's Dr Hannah Middleton  and UK specialist David Webb. PDF document and designed as a 2 sided A4 so just print off, photocopy and get it out there.

  2. a leaflet designed for an International audience - explaining why Australian's are protesting at Pine Gap, where it is , what is used  for.

Also a PDF suitable for web sites or printing off.

5. get informed

check out these web sites for more info on Pine Gap, National Missile
Defence and other peace issues:

Friends of the Earth: http://www.foe.org.au/nc/nc_pine.htm
MAPW: http://www.mapw.org.au/nationalmissiledefence/nmd-index.html
AABCC: www.anti-bases.org.au
OzPeace: www.ozpeace.net.au
Aust. Peace Committee: www.peacecourier.com
WANI (Women Against the Nuclear Industry) http://www.womenandearth.org/wani/wani.html
Global Network: www.space4peace.org (all about the international week to keep space  for peace, happening at the same time as the Pine Gap actions all around the world!)



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