UNAC’s April protests to say no to killer and spy drones

The United National Antiwar Coalition has announced demonstrations in 50 U.S. cities during April, which UNAC has designated “anti-drone month.” Many actions are set for April 20.

These protests focus on the new dangers at home and abroad from killer and spy drones. They also call attention to the escalating U.S. war threats against north Korea, Syria and Iran, and the French occupation of Mali in West Africa.

The UNAC call for the actions points out that “the Obama administration employs lethal drones for illegal targeted attacks around the world — notably in Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan and Yemen, where hundreds of civilians have been killed.”

About Korea, the call says: “To deny mandated democratic elections following the post WWII imperial division of Korea, the U.S. engineered the devastation attendant to the 1950-1953 Korean War — killing some 4 million North Koreans to maintain the U.S.-directed division of the country and the still ongoing U.S. occupation. This included the successive installation of hated dictatorial regimes that destroyed the resurgent labor and popular movements in the south. …

“The latest and most serious provocation is the staging in mid-March of ominous U.S. ‘military exercises,’ close to Korean skies, including a simulated nuclear attack on North Korea via armed B-2 and B-52 bombers, among the most powerful weapons of mass destruction in the world. The U.S. acknowledged that the North Koreans are not preparing for war, but not before demonizing Korea’s president.”

Regarding Iran and Syria, the call continues: “The U.S. is already waging war on Iran with brutal sanctions and a virtual embargo that cause terrible hardships, including a substantial fall in the standard of living of the Iranian people. U.S. surveillance drones openly fly in Iran’s air space, a deliberate provocation. …

“Similarly in Syria, another important oil producer, U.S. sanctions, political maneuvers, ‘indirect’ military aid to selected Syrian opposition forces favorable to U.S. interests, and threatening military intervention are aimed at a ‘regime change’ that advances U.S. military and economic objectives. The U.S. is discussing sending drones into Syria as the next step in offering direct military support to opposition units.”

The call also points to the 3,500 troops and military supplies the Pentagon sent to 35 African countries, and “plans to build a drone base in Niger, the first such site in Western Africa. This base can be used for surveillance and possible attacks against the Sahel, Central and West Africa.”

The UNAC call emphasizes that whatever “noble motives” are used to cloak the intervention, “the U.S. military never brings peace and democracy” and that UNAC says “no to U.S. intervention, sanctions, wars and occupations.” The group calls on “self-determination to all oppressed peoples and nations!”

UNAC also condemned the use of drones inside the U.S.: “Drones are the latest tool of warfare and repression at home and abroad. Their use is proliferating and they pose serious threats to human lives, national sovereignty, the right of privacy and the rule of law.”

Many of the local demonstrations have specific targets that are part of the U.S. war machine. For example, from April 26 to 28, a protest will be held at the Reaper drones base at Hancock Air Base near Syracuse, N.Y.

In New York City on April 20, demonstrators will gather at 8th Avenue and 15th Street starting at noon and march on Technion to protest the role of this Israeli arms technology institute in developing the high-tech arms industry in the New York area, and to protest the $400 million subsidy given to the institute by the city. This new industry will displace important hospitals on Roosevelt Island in the East River area.

For the full UNAC statement and more information about where the demonstrations are in your city, see knowdrones.com.