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Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp 20th

Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp 20th Anniversary!

Join the 'Women say NO to Star Wars' protests in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch on Monday, 27 August - see details at the end of this message.

On Monday, 27 August 2001, women around the world are celebrating the 20th anniversary of the beginning of the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp - the day in 1981 when Women For Life on Earth began walking from Cardiff (Wales) to Greenham Common (England).

They were walking to protest against the decision to deploy US nuclear cruise missiles in Europe, a decision which marked a major escalation in the nuclear weapons race. When they got to Greenham Common, some women chained themselves to the main gate and said they would not go home until the missile decision was reversed. From this the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp was born.

In the past twenty years, the US government (more than any other) has continued to develop and deploy new nuclear weapons systems and to explode their nuclear bomb 'tests' on the land of indigenous people. They have continued to bomb the citizens of various countries around the world, to impose economic sanctions with appalling consequences to the people targeted by them, to spend unimaginable amounts of money on their global war machine, and to impose their 'free trade' ideas on us all.

The activities of the US government and their armed forces remain a threat to life on earth. Now they are planning to commercialise and militarise space for the benefit of US big business and the Pentagon.

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Star Wars - Ballistic Missile Defence - space based laser weapons - space based nuclear weapons - 'killer' satellites - all these mark another major escalation in the nuclear weapons race; and the development and deployment of new, nastier, hugely destructive conventional weapons. As with so many US nuclear weapons, the Star Wars weapons are also being tested in the Pacific.

In the spirit of Greenham women's actions, on 27 August there will be protests around the world outside US embassies, consulates, military installations and other bases as women say NO to Star Wars! All of the protests on 27 August will be around sunset (local time). There will be two banners common to all the protests - 'Women Say NO to Star Wars' and 'Greenham Women Everywhere'. As it grows dark, we will light our candles and turn our backs on the US installation where we are gathered - this is to illustrate our contempt for the plans of the US government and big business, they hold no hope for the future.

* AUCKLAND: 5-30pm to 6-30pm, at the US Consulate office, 23 Custom Street East, City.

* WELLINGTON: 5-30pm to 6-30pm, at the US Embassy, 29 Fitzherbert Tce, Thorndon. If it is raining, gather in the brown wood gazebo (which will have a roof for the occasion!) in Katherine Mansfield garden, in Fitzherbert Tce. Things you could bring with you: something to tie to the fence; felt pen for writing on doves to tie on the fence; wool for weaving in the fence; something to make a noise with - pot and wooden spoon, whistle, your voice ... candles; your own banner or placard if you wish. Tarpaulins and lengths rope for the shelter would be helpful if it's raining.

* CHRISTCHURCH: 5-30pm to 6-30pm, at the US airforce base, Harewood (by Christchurch International airport).

For more information about Star Wars and the militarisation of space, check out the articles on Peace Movement Aotearoa's index page at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/stwars.htm

~ supported by PMA and WILPF (Aotearoa) ~


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