LOCH MASS MORDOR
a tale of Britain's dodgy nuclear arsenal
"We don't do anything secret here at all. We're very open."
Ministry of Defence, Faslane
Which is why the Navy has spent an estimated £1million in just two weeks trying (not very well) to prevent over 130 activists from Trident Ploughshare 2000 (TP2000), along with the regular Faslane Peace Camp crew, from gaining access to the submarine base that houses Britain's nuclear arsenal.
With the original 15 year old peace camp still under threat of eviction, members of TP2000 have been sending out daily multi-pixie missions from their own camp, bought and owned by a former Greenham Common protester. TP2000 is an alliance of priests, students, road protesters and peace campaigners from countries as far apart as Germany and Australia, calling themselves 'Hobbits'.
Activists have nicknamed the base 'Mordor' after the evil castle in the 'The Hobbit'. The hobbits involved in the latest two week non-stop assault on the nuclear sub base have been pissing all over security, even cheekily giving embarrassed police and the Ministry of Defence (MoD) advance warnings.
The MoD say, "There has never been a breach of security", funny that, considering that in the last two weeks activists have; cut the fences constantly, defeated the 'unscaleable' razor wire with old carpet, played a half hour game of football inside the base before anyone noticed, performed classical music in the road, demanded access to the base as weapons and war crimes inspectors, two elderly women have planted wild flowers and in one action, hobbits played spoons on the sound sensitive fence, setting off the alarms and distracting the guards whilst others swam across a loch to the subs.
"It was so easy it took almost no planning. We just started swimming, I was able to swim past two security boats ... and right up alongside Trident". So far there have been 107 arrests, some being released without charge whilst others are being held on remand. One of those on remand for stealing a boat and taking a sightseeing trip to nearby Coulport nuclear arms depot, is Angie Zeltzer, one of the original Ploughshares acquitted last year of committing any crime when she helped sledgehammer Hawk Jets bound for Indonesia.
"We see ourselves as fully open and accountable"
Just as they did then TP2000 have sent the MoD their names, addresses and videos of their actions "Most people would try to evade the law", says Angie, "we say we're within it and the Goverment is outside..we are upholding international law. Britain...uses it against Saddam Hussein or others but when they are applied against Britain, it goes blank".
International law is why the Ploughshares are so up for it, they won the Hawk Jets case because the jury agreed that theirs was a lesser crime committed to prevent the greater crime of Genocide (Nuremburg Principles, SchNEWS 177), now they want to put the British Government in the dock for breaking the International Court of Justice's Advisory Opinion on nuclear weapons which states, "(nuclear arms are)... the ultimate evil...destablising humanitarian law". Whatever the outcome tp2000 have pledged to continue the actions from now until the the year 2000 unless Britain gives up the bombs (or some prat puts his coffee mug on the button?)
"Wings of Death" by Dr Chris Busby (Quaker)
"From Polaris to Trident" by Graham Spinardi (Cambridge Uni Press)
(from SchnEWS 181)