|Date:||12 Jun 2001 16:52:48 -0000|
|Subject:||[CPEO-MEF] Vieques Digest 6/12/01|
#1) A CALL TO PARTICIPATE IN CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE AND SUPPORT ACTIONS #2)Viequenses in federal prison and awaiting trial #3)Demands of the people of Vieques to the US Navy #4) STATEMENT FROM THE JUSTICE AND PEACE CAMP #5) CALL TO ACTION: Virtual Sit-In for Vieques, Wed. June 13th! 4 June, 2001 A CALL TO PARTICIPATE IN CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE AND SUPPORT ACTIONS Warm greetings from Vieques. We prepare for the upcoming threat to our security and well being - US Navy bombing announced for the 13th of June. Since the intense campaign of civil disobedience at the end of April we have been working continuously on preparations for the next exercises - those of the Navy as well as ours. Our people prepare to resist the psychological and physical attack of the military maneuvers here. The Committee for the Rescue and Development of Vieques is convoking a constant dialogue about the process of non violent civil disobedience together with members of the Vieques Youth United, the Vieques Women=B4s Alliance, Horseriders for Peace, Luisa Guadalupe Camp, local leaders of the Catholic and Methodist churches, the Mayor of Vieques - D=E1maso Serrano, the Asst. Commisioner for Vieques and ex mayor - Radam=E9s Tirado, and our fishermen. Over the past weeks we have worked with the Coordinating Committee All Puerto Rico with Vieques, the Ecumenica Coalition, the Diocese of Caguas, the PR Bar Association, the Socialist Frente, the Carribean Project for Peace and Justice, the National Hostosiano Congress, the Giants of Carolina, the New Independence Movement, labor and student organizations, among other solidarity groups on the main island of Puerto Rico. The CRDV created the Luisa Guadalupe Institute for Civil Disobedience on Vieques to help systematize preparations for our next actions (workshops, orientations, written materiales, coordination between participants and the the Vieques community organizations). We work on a series of strategies directed at blocking the Navy=B4s maneuvers in June, in July, in August or whenever, and that way defend the peace of our community. We work in the context of non violent civil disobedience - a tool that has gained us the respect and attention of people throughout the world and that has paralyzed at several momentos, the Navy=B4s plans to continue their destruction of Vieques with bombs and guns. Participation in civil disobedience is much more than getting arrested. Presence and solidarity at the Peace and Justice Camp or in other areas of the struggle here, in Puerto Rico or in other countries during military maneuvers; your help with the multiple tasks of cleanup, maintenance, cooking, discipline, transportation, communications; your economic support and donation of materiales (boxes of water, battery, office materiales, tools for disarming oppresive fences, flashlights..); prayer and messsages of solidarity; promoting the dialogue in your neighborhood, in the churches, at work and in the family about the urgent need for the immediate and permanent cessation of military activity on Vieques - all these actions are an important part of this campaign in favor of life and against military violence. Support for the prisioners for peace in Vieques in the federal prision in Puerto Rico and in New York is a fundamental task of civil disobedience. Write them! You can find prisoner numbers, addresses and other information about our prisoners on the website viequeslibre.org or contacting us by email or telephone. We invite all Viequenses, all Puerto Ricans and people everywhere who defend peace and human rights, to participate in this historic process against the most powerful military force in the history of mankind - the US Navy - using our most powerful forces - a firm commitment to love, peace and justice. Take part in this historic moment! Call us at the Peace and Justice Camp in Vieques 787 741-0716 R. Rabin, CRDV #2) 7 June, 2001 PRESS RELEASE Viequenses in federal prison and awaiting trial Spokespersons for the Committee for the Rescue and Development of Vieques (CRDV) emphasized the participation of Viequenses in the recent acts of civil disobedience, and that currently five Viequenses are in federal prison and many more await trial. Veteran leader of the struggle against the military presence in Vieques, Ismael Guadalupe and North American resident in Vieques, Paul O'Leary, were released from prison two weeks ago after spending thirty and seventeen days respectively. Both were arrested in the bombing zone here at the end of April and were part of a brigade organized by the CRDV that also included Zoraida Figueroa (Puerto Rico), Angel Aponte (Vieques) and the North American resident in Vieques, Kathy Gannett. Trial date for these three is July 14th, together with Viequense civil disobedients Rafael Ayala (Vieques fisherman), Armando Torres (young Viequense machinist), and Myrta Sanes, sister of David Sanes, the Viequense security guard whose death by a Navy bombing error shook the consciousness of the Puerto Rican community. Viequenses jailed this week for their participation in the April actions against Navy bombing were Jos=E9 "Cheo" Molina, Angel Carmona, Juan Santos Centeno y Angel Class.Among the Viequenses awaiting trial for their participation in recent civil disobedience actions here are the Mayor of Vieques, D=E1maso Serrano; Civil Defense Director, H=E9ctor Oliveri; Father Nelson L=F3pez, parish priest; editor of local newspaper, Manuel Otero; Vieques engineer, Jos=E9 Arroyo; Viequense youth Buenaventura Torres and Vieques fishermen Hector and Mamn Ventura CRDV spokespersons announced that hundreds of Viequenses will participate in protest actions to denounce renewed bombing on July 13th and that an increasing number of people are signing up for civil disobedience actions inside the Navy's restricted zones. #3) Demands of the people of Vieques to the US Navy Demilitarization The US Navy must cese immediately and permanently the bombing our land and waters. The people of Vieques demand the removal of all military personnel and war artefacts installed in Vieques, including the ROTHR radar. Our people have hope that future generations of Viequenses may have the chance to live on an island of peace and not war. That=B4s why our principal slogan is: Navy out! Navy out! Decontamination The contamination from more that half a centuray of bombing and other military practices must be cleaned from our lands and waters and the Navy must leave our house as clean as they found it sixty years ago. The EPA and Puerto Rican government agencies responsible for the protection of our natural resources and enforcing environmental laws, have permitted the destruction of Vieques=B4 flora and fauna both on land and sea and the contamination of water, air and land by the US Navy.=20 Get our and clean up your mess! Return of Lands Every inch of Vieques lands must be returned to the Viequenses. We need the land for our homes, schools, hospitals, agriculture, turism development, fishing and for the future generations. During the 1940=B4s, the US Navy expropriated 26 thousand of Vieques 33,000 acres. The rescue of our lands is indispensible for the development of Vieques for future generations.=20 For Vieques to progress, we must get the Navy out! Development The people of Vieques have a vision for the development of a Vieques freed from the US Navy. With ample community participation - together with the Municipal Government and our Technical and Professional Team in Support of Vieques Sustainable Development - we will promote a new economy based on peace. Eco-turism, agriculture, fishing, marine biology investigations and projects related to Vieques archaeology, among other proyects generated by the creativity of our people, will provide work for our population. Vieques has the natural resources and the human capacity to create a healthy economy and end half a century of social and economic crisis caused by the military presence. The people of Vieques have a moral right to demand that the US Navy pay for sixty years of destruction and economic stagnation. We demand a billion dollar indemnization to be used in the socio-economic development of a Vieques freed from the Navy, a Vieques for the Viequenses and for all Puerto Ricans. If Vieques is to have a future, we must fight hard to get the Navy out! #4) STATEMENT FROM THE JUSTICE AND PEACE CAMP Our people are getting ready to face the bombings announced by the US Navy to start on June 13. Just like in April, when our forces held up the naval exercises at several moments, during the upcoming maneuvers we will also resist this military force that enslave us in the name of "freedom", violate our human rights while "defending" democracy. There is no turning back for us. The mayor, the parish priest, our women, youth and fishermen, in short: our people, have decided that the US Navy will not fire any more bombs without the community resisting through pacifist civil disobedience. Neither threats from two hundred Puerto Rican police members, nor tear gas, nor rubber-bullet shotguns can tame these people who have taken control of their future to ensure a free and healthy Vieques for the next generations. For the past three weeks there have been workshops and orientations about civil disobedience on the main island and in Vieques. The PR Bar Association, Todo Puerto Rico con Vieques, el Congreso Nacional Hostosiano, the Caribbean Project for Justice and Peace, and Law Students with Vieques, along with the Committee for the Rescue and Development of Vieques have prepared a handbook for Practical Workshops for Civil Disobedience in Vieques. Several comrades from the main island, including our Luz Nereida P=E9rez, gathered at the Justice and Peace Camp last Friday to discuss the handbook and the workshop's procedures. Six members of the Juventud Viequense Unida (Vieques Youth United) shared information about their own acts of civil disobedience last August, about the arrest, and about a pamphlet that they put together in order to train the next disobedients. Juan Vera, Bishop of the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico, was a special guest at this Saturday night's vigil, and so were a great number of officials of the Church who participated this week in the celebration of the centenary of the Methodist Church in Vieques. Bishop Vera read a resolution that was unanimously accepted by the Methodist Assembly, which supports civil disobedience and the struggle for peace in Vieques. During the vigil, we received three solidarity phone calls that we transmitted live to the area where the vigil was being held, thanks to the technical assistance of Andr=E9s Nieves, our audiovisual specialist. The first phone call was from Ernesto Pe=F1a, prisoner from Vieques, artist, and artisan. Aside from his own inspiring message, Pe=F1a read messages that were given to him by Paco Salda=F1a -another Viequense civil disobedient who is in the federal prison- and by Rub=E9n Berr=EDos, president of the PR Independence Party. The second phone call was from members of the Equipo Cristiano en Acci=F3n por la Paz (Christian Peacemakers Team) in Indiana, where they were holding a vigil simultaneously with ours. Four members of the Equipo Cristiano will be tried on the 28th of this month for their entrance to the restricted military zone during Navy exercises here in April. A third phone call of solidarity was from Blanch Rivera, wife of the NY State legislator Jos=E9 Rivera, one of the "Vieques quartet" of civil disobedients incarcerated in NY for the cause of Vieques. The "quartet" also includes Reverend Al Sharpton, NY City Councilor Alfonso Carri=F3n, and President of the Democrat Party in the Bronx, Roberto Ram=EDrez. Blanche offered a statement about the health and spirits of the four prisoners and about the commitment that they show with the struggle for Vieques. The prisoners from Vieques in the federal prison in Guaynabo are: Ernesto Pe=F1a Carambot # 21622-069 Francisco "Paco" Salda=F1a # 21618-069 Jos=E9 Molina Encarnaci=F3n #21504-069 Juan A. Santos Centeno #21510-069 Angel Class Alvarado #21509-069 You may write to them at : MDC Guaynabo PO Box 2147 San Juan, PR 00922-0692147 The full list of names of the prisoners for the peace of Vieques is available at viequeslibre.org or via our email. The CRDV covers costs and coordinates transportation for family members =of Vieques prisoners so they can get to the federal prison for weekly visits and return to Vieques the same day. Also, we deposit funds for Vieques prisoners needing aid in their prison account for purchases in the prison store and for phone calls. Our Committee also maintains a support camp outside the federal prison next to camps set up by the PIP and the University Students / Friends of Vieques and the Carolina Giants. Maintain the CRDV camp in support of our prisoners, transport people from Vieques to participate in activities at the camp represents another cost for the struggle. Therefore, we ask for your donation in funds or materials for the Peace and Justice Camps. R. Rabin, CRDV #5) CALL TO ACTION: Virtual Sit-In for Vieques, Wed. June 13th! On Wednesday, June 13th, 2001, beginning at 9am EST and continuing for 24 hours, join the Virtual Sit-In for Vieques at http://www.freespeech.org/provieques Why a Virtual Sit-In? To support the demand that the US Navy cease their wargames and leave Vieques in peace. To add our virtual bodies to the presence of the physical bodies of Puertorican activists who will occupy the bombing ranges of la Isla Nena. To attract media attention by engaging in a new form of protest action. To send a message to the United States government that we will not be silenced until the people of Vieques can live without the sound of jets screaming overhead, without the destruction of their beaches and coral reefs, without the high cancer rates caused by depleted uranium found in bullets and shell casings, without the 'accidental' deaths of civilians. To add our voices to the cry 'Not one more bomb! Leave Vieques in Peace!' =A1PALANTE! *For more information on the struggle for Vieques, and on other ways you can help, please visit www.viequeslibre.org. For more information on this electronic action contact firstname.lastname@example.org. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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