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Then this happened

The crime of conscience. In June, WIP reported on the nine peace activists who commemorated the original anti-war intent of Mother’s Day by protesting against the nuclear-armed Trident subs parked in Kitsap County. One of the demonstrators James Manista, “crossed the blue line” and was charged under US Code #1382, Entering military, naval, or Coast Guard property, which comes with a possible six months in jail and $5,000 fine.

James Manista (center) surrounded by supporters at the Tacoma Federal Courthouse, October 23, 2019. Photo by Joanne Dufour

This October, Manista pled guilty and made an impassioned statement about the insanity of the US nuclear practices. The Navy prosecutor recommended a $50 fine. Magistrate Judge Theresa Fricke stated, “I will lower the recommended fine in recognition of defendant’s conscientious protest” and charged him $25.

Today, there are eight Trident submarines in Kitsap County, deployed at Bangor. Six others are at Kings Bay, Georgia. About five of the eight Bangor-based subs are at sea at any given time. Three of those are thought to be on “hard alert,” ready to launch on command. Due to the number of missiles on each sub, about 270 nuclear warheads can be launched on 60 Trident missiles within about 15 minutes of receiving an order.

One Trident submarine carries the destructive force of over 1,300 Hiroshima bombs (the Hiroshima bomb was 15 kilotons).

The crime of poetry. In January of 2018, we published the story of a Palestinian poet, Dareen Tatour who was arrested, then imprisoned, then confined to her house for writing a poem called “I’ll Forget, As You Wish.” Well, today Dareen Tatour is finally free. Despite dogged efforts by the government of Israel to secure the maximum conviction possible, their Supreme Court last week rejected the state’s petition to restore Tatour’s overturned conviction for incitement to violence. With that, the poet’s legal ordeal came to an end, more than four years after it began.

The crime of identity. Everyone freaked out when it was reported that Trump said we should shoot immigrants in the leg. But that’s what the Israeli army does to Palestinians and it’s fine. Since this March, Palestinian in Gaza have massed along the shared border with Israel to call for a return to lands they were displaced from in 1948. In 8 months, Israeli snipers have shot 6392 demonstrators in the lower limbs.

Clarification: Views expressed in October’s article about the Port’s real estate ventures were those of the author, Esther Kronenberg.


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