We carried out a fabulous 'rise up' nonviolent action today - creative, full of singing and ritual and narrative - my favourite kind. [well I did help organise it!]
Part 1 - Acknowledgement and Reflection
We started with a senior custodian of that country, who attended with his sister and younger brother and grandchildren, welcoming us to that country. And in response we thanked him and apologised for the impact of our people and society on his people. We stood in silence feeling the earth and remembering and acknowledging.
We then listened to a prophesy of Ezekiel - dry bones that will return to life; Matthew's beatitudes and Jesus' pentecostal call to love and rejection of fear in John 14. This was a pentecost action, so we then placed on a cross black cards with the names of the dead in Iraq and red flame-cards with the names of people who have led/do lead us in action into the Reign of God. - Oscar Romero, Gandhi, Luther King, Seeds of Hope, Ploughshares, Ciaron O'Reilly, - all our favourite heros.
We sang - Hear the voice of Justice Cry, Moving through our Land ...
and then Rise up, Rise up on Eagles Wings
Part 2 - Transformation
We transformed the sign at the front of Pine Gap from "Pine Gap Terror Base" to "Pine Gap Peace Base"
... and we created a lovely peace symbol on the ground in front of it out of purple flowers while Stu sang "Flowers in the Guns"
“Come on Everybody, Lets put Flowers in the Guns, Everyone under the sun, Lets put Flowers in the Guns”
Part 3 - Inspection
We listened to Helen Caldicott speak about the US war machine, we listened to Bryan talk about the court case, we listened to Edward.
We congratulated the Pine Gap 4
Then we launched a mass citizen’s inspection. Unfortunately after asking three times, our inspection was not given authorisation. We then regrouped.
Edward and Terry decided that they were prepared to proceed with an inspection despite not being authorised by the authorities! So the crowd of citizens gave the authorisation needed.
Edward and Terry went forth and climbed the fence to carry out their mission - yes over the barbed wire. Unfortunately they were arrested on the other side.
We sang: “With my hammer I break the chain, I will not remain in silence. I will stand and I will defend my right to fight against violence.”
Then we sang: Let justice roll on like a river…
And went home ...
[Oh - Terry and Edward were released to our loving arms first, uncharged, unhurt.]
... I'm tired. - lucky we didn't have to do a watch-house solidarity vigil!