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Catholic group to U.S. Soldiers: "Refuse to Fight! Refuse to Kill!"

by La Voz de Aztlan Wednesday, Mar. 19, 2003 at 10:27 AM

Catholic Group Pours Human Blood in Front of Military Recruitment Center. They call upon Catholic US soldiers to: "Refuse to Fight! Refuse to Kill!"

Catholic Group Pours Human Blood in Front of

Military Recruitment Center

They call upon Catholic US soldiers to:

"Refuse to Fight! Refuse to Kill!"

March 17th

At 3:30pm, four people from the Ithaca Catholic

Worker Community poured blood in and outside the

military recruitment center in Cayuga Mall, in Ithaca,

NY (near TJ Max), declaring that the slaughter of the

innocent of Iraq is wrong.

Peter DeMott, Daniel Burns, Teresa and Clare Grady

all entered the office with jars filled with human

blood which they poured up on the walls, door and bay

window, on the flag, on the stand-up cut-outs of

smiling military recruits, and over a body bag which

they had brought representing the American soldiers

who may die in this next onslaught on Iraq.

Peter and Daniel stayed kneeling inside while Clare

and Teresa went outside with the body bag in front of

the door to kneel and pray. They stayed for a while

praying the rosary, read from their statement and

from a statement requesting our Brothers and Sisters

in the Military: "Refuse to Fight! Refuse to kill!".

Both statements are below.

At the same time another Catholic Worker group of 30

protesters in downtown Ithaca called on the local

daily newspaper to be more accountable with its

coverage of this war and the Bush policies which have

led up to the announcement of unilateral preemptive

strike on Iraq, despite millions who have taken to

the streets to oppose this war, including many from


The group asked that connections of the cost of the

war and how the Ithaca community is paying for the

war be spelled out. Examples were the budget cuts and

loss of jobs within our own school district. The

C.W.'s demanded that the Journal make known the faces

of the victims of this war, just as we learned the

names and faces of the victims of Sept. 11th, stating

that neither group are collateral damage. The Journal

was asked that the 100,000 body bags sent to Kuwait

be put on the headlines of the paper. Kathy Kelly of

Voices in the Wilderness, who is in Iraq as one of

the Human Shields, was given as a resource to have

first hand information on the conditions inside Iraq.

Members of the group said that they'd like to see

some of these demands be made visible in the paper

this week.

As the group was speaking to the editor of the paper,

it was announced that an action had taken place at

the recruitment center. All decided to join those

outside at the military office , where supporters

read the statement aloud from the four, who were

taken quickly by the Tompkins County Sheriff's

Department to the jail on Warren Rd. At this time

they are being held overnight at the county jail and

bail is set for 0 each person.

Statement read by the four:


"Our apologies, dear friends, for the fracture of

good order." As our nation prepares to escalate the

war on the people of Iraq by sending hundreds of

thousands of U.S. soldiers to invade, we pour our

blood on the walls of this military recruiting center.

We mark this recruiting office with our own blood to

remind ourselves and others of the cost in human life

of our government's war making.

Killing is wrong. Preparations for killing are wrong.

The work done by the Pentagon with the connivance of

this military recruiting station ends with the

shedding of blood, and God tells us to turn away from

it. Blood is the symbol of life. All life is holy.

All people are created in the image and likeness of

God. All people are family, and everyone is loved by


"Dr. Martin Luther King reminds us that"...we are

called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for

the victims of our nation, for those it calls "enemy,"

for no document from human hands can make these

humans any less our brothers {and sisters}."

We come here today with pictures of Iraqi people --

mothers, children, those who have been the victims of

U.S. bombardment and sanctions for the past twelve

years. We also come here with love in our hearts for

the U.S. service people, also victims of war making.

We find hope in these dark times when sisters and

brothers around the world resist the spirit of hatred

and violence, lift up prayers for peace -- together

with works for peace.

Brothers and Sisters in the Military: "Refuse to

Fight! Refuse to Kill!"

You are being ordered to war by a President who was

never elected, who has never fought in a war, and who

is saying that it is acceptable to use nuclear

weapons. You are being ordered to war in the

footsteps of veterans, who, more than 10 years ago,

were sent to fight the first Gulf War. Many of those

vets returned with severe and unacknowledged

illnesses. Many gave birth to severely deformed

children. Many were abandoned by the Veterans

Administration. You are being ordered to war by the

most powerful nation on earth. You are being ordered

to war by a nation with the most destructive weapons

ever conceived, developed, deployed or used. You are

being ordered to war by a nation whose

self-acknowledged posture is that of world domination,

mastery, control. This nation can have no moral

justification for war.

We, the undersigned, are convinced that war is the

greatest evil on earth. We believe that humankind

must end war, or war will end humankind, and, in fact,

all of creation. Our convictions have driven us time

and again to the Pentagon, White House and Congress

in acts of civil resistance to war. Now, we bring our

plea to you, sisters and brothers, in the armed

forces. Refuse to kill. Refuse the order to go to war.

Leave the military before it is too late. We know

your resistance to war will be difficult and require

great courage. There are groups established for the

express purpose of counseling and supporting military

resisters. To find out about your right to

conscientiously object to war call: GI Rights Hotline,

1-800-394-9544 (or 1-800 fyi 95gi) As you consider

this plea, we ask that you reflect: Is

non-cooperation more difficult than fighting in war?

Is non-cooperation more difficult than being a pawn

of corporate greed? Is non-cooperation more difficult

than living with a violated conscience? Is

non-cooperation more difficult than living with the

poisons of war in your body and spirit? Wrong is easy.

Right is difficult and long. Do what your heart says

is right.

We knowingly and willingly make this plea to you in

violation of 18 USC Sec. 1381 and 2387. We

knowingly and willingly embrace some of your risk by

urging you to refuse duty in the U.S. military. We

plead with you, as Bishop Oscar Romero pleaded with

Salvadoran troops: "When you hear the words of a man

telling you to kill, remember instead the words of

God: 'Thou shalt not kill!' No soldier is obliged to

obey an order contrary to the law of God...In the

name of God, in the name of our tormented people who

have suffered so much and whose laments cry out to

heaven, I beseech you, I beg you, I order you in the

name of God, stop the repression!'" If you choose to

leave the military, please know that our hearts and

homes are open to you.

In Ithaca, NY contact the Ithaca Catholic Worker

(607)-387-8478 (voice mail) In Baltimore contact

Jonah House (410-233-6238) In Washington contact

Dorothy Day Catholic Worker (202-882-9649)

* * * * * * * * * * **** * * *

Forwarded by

La Voz de Aztlan
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