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Raytheon 9 - On Trial

category antrim | anti-war / imperialism | feature author Sunday June 08, 2008 20:59author by Ciaron O'Reilly - Catholic Worker/Plowsharesauthor address Belfast Report this post to the editors

They're on Trial For Us, We're on the Loose for Them!

featured image
On Trial!

The Raytheon 9 are an inspiration. I just got a phone call from my friend Les who's trying to get a plane ticket to get to Belfast for the Raytheon 9 trial. Les hasn't been to Northern Ireland since he did three tours with the British military. He says is it is so exciting that socialists and republicans are experimenting with nonviolent direct action and he wants to be there to support them at the trial. He says that this would be a great way for him to return to Northern Ireland - confront his past and celebrate a future with a community in resistance to war.

Les was a British soldier who has moved on to nonviolent direct action against the war machine - in the '90's he broke the sanctions on Iraq and in 03 was arrested blockading the HMS Ark Royal as it pulled out to Iraq and the start of this war. As he was being arrested at Aldermaston a few years ago, the arresting cop forcing him to the ground and cuffing him said "You were in my unit in Northern Ireland!" Les's expression of regret for the previous activity they had undertaken together did not win him any favours.

Meanwhile Bush has been invited to Belfast as man of peace with the hope of further U.S. investment with no mention of restrictions on weapons manufacturers such as Raytheon http://www.counterpunch.org/harkin05302008.html The north fast tracked from the fringe of empire to central comfort zone where hi tech weaponry can be constructed and where troubles are exported to Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Colombia et al and become someone Else's troubles.

To spend the day around the Raytheon defendants in the Laganside Courthouse has been an inspiration. To be around people risking their liberty for peace and justice is always both a nourishing and challenging experience. It always poses the question what can I do in response to their gift and the wars that continue to claim so many victims.

Inside the court - at the front there was the Judge, to the side the jury, in the middle I counted 20 legal (mostly bewigged) professionals, at the back there was 30 of us in support from Derry, Dublin and Belfast. We were parents, partners, SWP, Catholic Worker, Quakers, Pax Chrisit, Republican, punk, a long hair lad from Hollywood and other traditions.

And then there were the defendants being frisked as they entered this weird kind of plexiglass, aquarium like pod in the middle of the courtroom. Boiled down these were unmistakeably Derry lads who did the right thing at the right time as Lebanon burned and Raytheon raked in the profits. A barman, a biker, a journo among their number. They stood with their action to save lives and are here today, 2 1/2 years later, risking their liberty to speak some truth to power.

Eamonn McCann took the stand. Born on the Derry's bogside in 1942 his parents were of the working class - a labourer and a retired nurse. His testimony traced his life's trajectory that brought him into Derry's Raytheon's offices - anti-Vietnam War, civil rights, labour organising, radical journalism and sustained activism.

The events immediately preceding the occupation and decommisioning of Raytheon by the nine were described. There was a sense that this was a very Derry action. We were in the company of people who walk the walk after they talk the talk. A large crowd had gathered at Sandinos Bar in early August 06 to hear visiting U.S. veteran of the Iraq War Joshua Casteel http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM8jjqxtSpY and an Iraqi exile describe their experiences of the war on Iraq.

The discussion, that followed the presentations, quickly turned to the U.S./Raytheon equipped Israeli bombing of Lebanon ongoing that night. The realisation that Raytheon with a plant in Derry was profiting and pivotal to the slaughter of these Lebanese civilians. The questions posed, what is our response, what can we do to intervene in this slaughter?

The follow up meeting a few days later had all the hallmarks of human frailty that speaks of our movement that confronts corporate entities such as Raytheon ("light from the Gods") that claim omnipotence and the power of life and death. The room booked at Badger's Bar was double booked and the fine tuning action meeting of 50 souls took place in the public bar much to the bemusement of fellow nonalligned drinkers. Then it was off to Raytheon on the morning of August 9th (the 61st. anniversary of the destruction of the city of Nagasaki by one bomb).

The last team talk was given in a nearby carpark by Goretti Hogan who emphasised a commitment to nonviolence and an objective to disable Raytheon's equipment in attempt to preserve life and social infrastructure in Lebanon. Down the hill and around the three police officers present and the door kindly open by a worker entering the building. Up the stairs and into the corporate officers where software to deliver destruction is produced. But what would life be without a domestic?

Eamonn and Gorreti concluding that their 20 year old daughter with severe learning need a difficulties a parent at large. Gorreti left the building, the door was barricaded and the very human work of military disarmament got underway. Raytheon's mainframe computer was decommisioned with the use of a handy fire extinguisher. Raytheon computers and paperwork were despatched through an open window onto the car park pavement below. After 7 hours the barricade was broken with a chainsaw and the robocops inched forward around the nine card playing resisters. A scene reminiscent of the last roundup of Jake and Elwood Blues Brothers!

Also recounted was the nine defendant's post arrest sojourn to the heavily bombed Lebanese town of Cana where they experienced firsthand the victims and orphans of Raytheon.

On cross examination the Prosecutor did his best to suggest that there was another agenda other than an attempt to preserve life in Lebanon that drove the nine. He suggested this was not a direct intervention but a publicity stunt. On recross the defendant explained he was a radio/television/newspaper journalist with little need of publicity stunts to express his views. The Prosecutor tried another tack - this was a revenge on Raytheon of wanton destruction following a frustrated political campaign. McCann pointed out if wanton destruction was the motivation the computers would not have gone out an open window but a closed one. Point taken!

The trial continues tomorrow. From my experiences what is significant in these dark times is solidarity and resistance. There isn't much resistance in the West these days because there is not much solidarity. The more solidarity the resister/defendant experiences the easier the task, the burden is lightened.

I hope Les makes it to Belfast.

If you can't make it to Belfast check out their website http://www.raytheon9.org and spread the word.

Send a text to me at the court. I'll copy it down and pass it on to the defendants


Inside UK 07950 290 857
Outside the UK 0044 7950 290 857
Not sure how you SMS/Text from U.S.?

Suggested text - short message, name, city
eg. Goodonya! Ciaron, Dublin
http://www.raytheon9.org

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by Ciaron O'Reilly - Catholic Worker/Plowsharespublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 07:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Soldiarity to those on trial. A special greeting for Eamonn, from someone who was at university the same time as him.

A thought for Eamonn from Tennyson's Ulysses:

"Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho'
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are,--
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield."

best regards

Gary"
(originally of Omagh, now of Brisbane)

"Thanks to the Raytheon 9 you are held by a community that spans (or was that spams? ed) the world and the victims of war will surely salute you."
Stephen Hancock, Oxford, England
Upper Heyford Ploughshares disarmament of nucler capablle F1 11, England
http://www.plowsharesactions.org/webpages/UPPERHEYFORDP...S.htm

"Please send my salam 2 the R9 I will share their story with activists from West Papua and with student activists preparing 4 climate camp. I am moved by their solidarity with folk brutalised by Raytheon.
Jason, Brisbane, Australia

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by Chrispublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 11:09author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Message sent - fair play to all working 4 peace, & to yr mate Les, Ciaron - it takes some bottle!

author by redjadepublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 13:04author address author phone Report this post to the editors




ABOVE: US Prez Eisenhower warns us of the Military Industrial Complex

I have no way of sending a text today - I will write my message here.

Thank you to all 9 for your efforts and sacrifice to stop the profiteers of war - in this age of man-made global food shortages, astronomical oil profits and a massive 1st-World military industrial complex that feeds itself on human blood - this resistance should be celebrated and not be the last.

Related Link: http://LMV.hu/redjade
author by GH - Derry Anti War Coalitionpublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 16:28author email resistderry at aol dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thanks to Ciaron for his 'solidarity text' campaign. As it looks like the trial may end in the next day or two, please continue to send email solidarity messages to resistderry@aol.com as we collate them all and put all messages together on the Raytheon 9 website www.raytheon9.org.

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by Mark Cpublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 18:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Cianon and Derry Anti-War,

Well done on this campaign. Hopefully you'll get hundreds of emails/texts from people. You are doing a great job.

Mark.

author by Ciaronpublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 18:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Solidarity.
Harry, Dublin

Solidarity and warmest wishes ti the Raytheon 9.
Paul, member of the Labour Party, Ireland

Big solidarity to the Raytheon 9 from Australia. Thanks for your resistance and speaking the truth. Love and peace from Donna Mulhearn www.pinegap4.org Sydney, Australia.

Thanks for fighting the good fight and good luck and good wishes
from "Smash EDO" and the "Carnival Against the Arms Trade"
Brighton, England

Best wishes - work for peace!
Chris, Cambridge, England

Thank you for your bravery on behalf of us all. We're with you - Emily in Belfast via Washington D.C. (where you have more support than you think!)

Justice for the Raytheon 9! Down with business and wars for Empire! Best wishes comrades.
Daithi, Dublin

Greeetiings and best wishes.
Tim Hourigan, Limerick

Sending solidarity and warm greetings to you all - all the best for the future.
Jon, Birmingham, England.

To R9: Solidarity and all the best!
Fintan Lane, Dublin

author by Justin Morahanpublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 20:39author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Message sent. Here is a supporting poster.

PDF Document raytheon_poster.pdf 0.05 Mb

author by Sevinch Karaca - Workers Solidarity Movement-Corkpublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 01:14author email nazire.sevinc at gmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

I stumbled upon the might of the arms industry 12 years ago to churn a press relase of which I could not make much sense of its "disguised" language that was handed to me by the editor of the newspaper I was working for in Turkey. It was about an exhibition, but the industry and location of the exhibition was not specified. It has been a more or less cumbersome journey since in trying to tell the world that it is the biggest industry by far ( check out CAAT research figures) and it needs these wars to exist and subsequently to survive. Even oil industrialists are disturbed by its hunger that it is preventing "business". The link between the arms dealers and the likes of the World Bank and IMF which forces poor countries ( now our great EU through Lisbon Treaty) to more and more military spending in return for more military spending is not a well kept secret anymore (Fisk, Said and Pilger wrote extensively about these). A lot to tell. Emotional (what we need to feel about this action), moving action by the comrades is empowering and motivating to say the least.
Your hearthened supporter and comrade from Turkey

author by solidarity textspublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 08:25author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Solidarity and love from Auckland, New Zealand, to the Raytheon 9. kia kaha!

Best of luck this week folks!
Mark, Portumna, Galway

Best wishes to R9
Alan, Dublin

Please tell R9 lads that Julie K sends love from the U.S.A.
I'm there in spirit.
Julie, USA

author by Ciaronpublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 08:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Due to the absence of the jury and laws on subjudice little can be reported on Tuesday's developments in the R9 trial.

That we are not allowed to take notes from the public gallery also effects public alt/media reporting (se my initial posting) of the trial.

Approx 25 anti-war folks attended preceedings yesterday in support of the defendants. Defendants appear to be in good spirits.

I'll be at trial today so keep those solidarity texts coming in. I'm copying them by hand into a small booklet that I will leave with the defendants to pass around

. Defendants viewed the texts yesterday and were bouyed by the varriety of people and locations they were coming in from.

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by daffy duck - nonepublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 13:04author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Can't say much today but, believe me, from tomorrow the text messages will probably be redundant. Well done for all the support and the demeanour of the nine brave men in the dock!

author by Ciaronpublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 17:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Back in Dub and downtown until 8 pm. (Wed)
If anyone buys me a pint I'll give you an eyewitness account of a fascinating 3 daze in Laganside court.

All the stuff in court today happened in the absence of the jury so can't be reported

Outside the court defense looks happy, prosecution looks sad.
Trial resumes at 10.30 am Thursday morning.

Free the Raytheon 9!
Disarm Raytheon!
Phone no longer in Belfast.
Post support message here or email
address on www.raytheon9.org

author by Justin Morahanpublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 18:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Will be glad to buy you one if you come to Terenure Inn, Terenure before or after 8 pm. :-)

author by more solidarity textspublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 22:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Solidarity and love to Eamonn. Colm and the Raytheon 9 from Heather, Oisin and Joe C in New Zealand and all comrades of Socialist Aotearoa. Spreading the word down here.

Solidarity to all 9 justice defenders.
Ed, Limerick

Thanks for taking such a brave stance. It is an amazing thing to risk your freedom for the lives of others.
Margaret, Limerick

You're all in our thoughts. Le gra agus solas a chairde.
Mars Borza, Tara, County Meath

author by CB - Raytheon 9publication date Thu Jun 05, 2008 00:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Just a quick line to thank Ciaron for passing on the messages. Having so many people in court this week has been tremendous for all of us in the dock. Messages from Lebanon too this week, from friends we met when we were there, which were very moving. Having the footage of the Qana massacre played in court, brought us back to the day we stood at the graves. It's hard to find words sometimes. Wish we could tell you all more about the case. Tomorrow maybe.... Salam, Colm

author by CB - Raytheon 9publication date Thu Jun 05, 2008 00:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Just a quick line to thank Ciaron for passing on the messages. Having so many people in court this week has been tremendous for all of us in the dock. Messages from Lebanon too this week, from friends we met when we were there, which were very moving. Having the footage of the Qana massacre played in court, brought us back to the day we stood at the graves. It's hard to find words sometimes. Wish we could tell you all more about the case. Tomorrow maybe.... Salam, Colm

author by Peterpublication date Thu Jun 05, 2008 07:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Kia kaha!" as the Maori say... Be strong!
Your action was a statement of TRUTH.
In solidarity from Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand.
Peter Murnane!
One of the Waihopai Ploughshares 3

www.ploughshares.org.nz

Related Link: http://www.ploughshares.org.nz
author by GH - Derry Anti War Coalitionpublication date Thu Jun 05, 2008 19:03author email resistderry at aol dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Today, the Raytheon 9 were acquitted on the charge of affray. The trial in relation to the remaining charges of criminal damage has been adjourned pending an appeal. The appeal is being held as quickly as possible and a gagging order in relation to the issues under appeal is in place to preserve the integrity of the trial. Just as soon as we have any further definite news, the Raytheon 9 website will be updated and news posted on indymedia.

author by Deirdre Clancypublication date Thu Jun 05, 2008 22:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Well done on the acquittal for the one charge. Here's hoping and praying that the same verdict will apply to the rest of the charges.
Keep up the great work.

author by GH - DAWCpublication date Fri Jun 06, 2008 21:23author email resistderry at aol dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

The appeal was heard today. We can't say anything about it except that the trial will resume before the jury on Monday. Hopefully, next week will be the last! Hope to see some of you there - Laganside Court is a couple of hundred yards from the Central train station.

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by notpublication date Sat Jun 07, 2008 19:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Possible job cuts in Raytheon Derry
http://www.derryjournal.com/journal/Raytheon-looking-at...33.jp

author by Ciaronpublication date Sun Jun 08, 2008 12:06author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Monday June 9th 4pm-7pm- Solidairty Vigil at Dublin's GPO with the Raytheon 9

http://www.indymedia.ie/article/87874

author by Michael Gallagher - Photographerpublication date Mon Jun 09, 2008 11:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Solidarity to Eamonn and all the rest.

Eamonn, I still have that plastic bullet from '93. ;-)

Take care.

Michael.

A weapon of mass destruction. Photo (c) Paul Mattsson.
A weapon of mass destruction. Photo (c) Paul Mattsson.

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/87612
author by JustWonderingpublication date Mon Jun 09, 2008 11:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Just wondering why the protest was on the 9th August??

Is it not more significant to have had the protest on the 6th August for Hiroshima, which was the first time the aweful atomic bomb was used....???

See the following URL: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atomic_bombings_of_Hiroshi...asaki

Could I suggest that we are grabbing at dates to consolidate our cause....

author by Ciaron - Catholic Worker/Plowsharespublication date Mon Jun 09, 2008 13:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

August 9th. is the anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Nagasaki, one of the oldest Christian centres in Asia.

The Catholic Cathedral was used a ground zero for targeting by a predominantly Catholic U.S. bomb crew.

The bomb crew was blessed by Fr. George Zabelka before boarding the flight.

Fr. Zabelka later repented his role and embraced pacifism as central to the Christian ethic.
He traced the Christian complicity in the nuking of Nagasaki and Hiroshima to the Constantine shift in the 3rd. century - the legalisation of christianity, the abandonment of pacifism etc.

As an act of repentance Zabelka sepnt 2 years walking from the Trident nuke sup base in Washington state to Bethelehem. Google him interesting guy.

By the by -Nagasaki Day was also chosen by the Jabiluka Ploughshares to disable uranium mning equipmet in '98.

Related Link: http://www.plowsharesactions.org
author by GH - DAWCpublication date Mon Jun 09, 2008 15:14author email resistderry at aol dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

it wasn't the 6th...... The meeting at which we decided to occupy and decommission Raytheon was on the 7th August!

Also, there had been some marking of Hiroshima Day, which put the 9th in mind for us.

author by William Wallpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 09:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's difficult to get day to day news of what's going on. Understandably the Raytheon 9 site has a lot on its mind. Today is Tuesday 10th, can anybody attending the trial give a brief update, or point me to where I could find such an update?

Related Link: http://www.williamwall..eu
author by Ciaronpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Closing arguments began in the trial yesterday (Monday).
Defence rested after calling one witness.
Trial is likely to conclude this week.

author by Ciaronpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Closing arguments began in the trial yesterday (Monday).
Defence rested after calling one witness.
Trial is likely to conclude this week.

author by William Wallpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thanks Ciaron.

Related Link: http://www.williamwall..eu
author by Damien Moranpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors




The Youtube video is of R9 trial, week 2 - it was uploaded by Belfast anti-war group

Below is brief interview with Eamonn McCann, one of the Raytheon 9 (www.raytheon9.org) and veteran civil rights campaigner from Derry, Northern Ireland, speaking from Qana, Lebanon, (July 2007) on the 1st anniversary of the Israeli bombardment of Lebanon with Raytheon produced missiles.

http://radio.indymedia.org/en/node/16892

This is a link to my report from Lebanon last summer after spending time with members of the DAWC, Raytheon 9 visiting areas torn apart by he war.

Irish Activists in Lebanon on 1st Anniversary of Israel's War
http://www.indymedia.ie/article/83681

The interview with activist/artist Shane Cullen (in the comment section), who designed the commemoration stone layed at Qana by the DAWC, might be of particular interest.

This weekend we will have a demonstration in Poland against US missile base plans. We will hand out flyers with info. about Raytheon 9 action, website, etc.

The SWP and Stop War Coalition here in Poland are aware of the Raytheon 9 case. They held a conference here in Warsaw recently and send their best wishes to the defendants.

All activists I have met over the past few weeks here in Warsaw have been very happy to hear about the DAWC/Rayheon 9 campaign and actions.

Last weekend we had a no border conference and protest against Frontex, the EU migrant hunting agency, whose headquarters are in Warsaw. Activists from all Europe attended and were heartened to hear about the anti-militarist success of the DAWC/Raytheon 9.

So the ripples are reaching far and wide and inspiring a lot of people. Who knows what will transpire from others reading and learning from the campaign to kick Raytheon out of Derry, out of Ireland, out of.......??

Related Link: http://cia.bzzz.net/raytheon_9_on_trial_in_belfast_may_17th_disarm_the_arms_profiteers
author by solidarity textspublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Hi Raytheon 9.Keep resisting. Keep toppling those who think they are Gods.
Solidarity from
Karen, Hackney, London

R9, I left my job at IBM after one of yr support gig in Dub in 2006....prob the decision I'm most proudest of.
Thx 4 what u did. Peace will prevail
Edu - Barcelona

author by Michael Gallagher - Photographerpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 17:02author email libertypics at yahoo dot ieauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Pics (c) Michael Gallagher, not to be used without permission.

Child
Child

Vigil
Vigil

author by Goretti - Derry Anti War Coalitionpublication date Tue Jun 10, 2008 18:59author email resistderry at aol dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

The case has now concluded, the judge has directed the jury and the eleven remaining members of the jury (one got sick) will tomorrow (Wed) consider their verdict. We will text/phone everyone just as soon as we have a verdict.

We are all confident of an acquittal or, at worst, a hung jury....let's hope we're right!

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by Damien Moranpublication date Wed Jun 11, 2008 16:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I just got an sms from Ciaron O'Reilly:

R9 ACQUITTED ON ALL CHARGES. E McCann guilty of theft - got conditional discharge.

Related Link: http://www.raytheon9.org
author by Fiachrapublication date Wed Jun 11, 2008 23:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Well done everyone, ye're inspirations.

author by Ciaronpublication date Sat Jun 28, 2008 13:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

LINK-Critical Mass in Memory of anarchist cyclist killed on way to anti-arms trade protest in Englan

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2008/06/402051.html

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