Several British newspapers, including the Guardian, the Herald (Glasgow) and the Morning Star have reported from the United States that three anti-nuclear WMD activists, including an 84 year old nun, have just been jailed for breaking into a major military nuclear production plant. This raises major questions over what is legitimate for concerned citizens to do about nuclear weapons of mass destruction
The nun, Sister Megan Rice, who actually received a 35 month sentence and two other defendants Michael Walli (64) and Greg Boertje-Obed (58) - the latter two being jailed for 62 months each - were also fined a massive $53,000 for entering the Y-12 nuclear explosives (fissile materials) production facility at the giant Oak Ridge uranium enrichment plant in Tennessee, and daubing it with Biblical messages
Despite a 14,000-signature petition pleading for leniency in the case, the US government lawyers argued the three are "recidivists and habitual offenders".
Yet at his celebrated speech at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin on 19 June last year, President Obama said” “We may no longer live in fear of global annihilation, but so long as nuclear weapons exist, we are not truly safe…”and added “.And so, as President, I've strengthened our efforts to stop the spread of nuclear weapons, and reduced the number and role of America’s nuclear weapons. Peace with justice means pursuing the security of a world without nuclear weapons -- no matter how distant that dream may be.”
He also revealed “America will host a summit in 2016 to continue our efforts to secure nuclear materials around the world…and call on all nations to begin negotiations on a treaty that ends the production of fissile materials for nuclear weapons. These are steps we can take to create a world of peace with justice.”
These three brave activists should be released immediately, and thanked by the US Government for taking seriously the President’s pledges on nuclear disarmament.
The UK Government could directly assist, and should publicly lobby President Obama to live up to his promises, prove they are more than warm words, and pardon the activists.