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Emma Kaplan

Emma Kaplan is the National Youth and Student Coordinator of World Can't Wait

January 26th, 2010 5:48 PM

Stop Military Spying, Support Port Protesters!

On Friday January 27th, Olympia anti war activist Patti Imani and World Can’t Wait Steering committee member Emma Kaplan will be facing trial for participating in protests with Port Military Resistance (PMR) in August 2008. They could face a fine of $200 and 6 months in jail. PMR has been a national effort to non violently protest and blockade military vehicles used in the war in Iraq. PMR in Washington state has blockaded Stryker Brigade vehicles that travel from Iraq, carried through the ports and return to the nearby military bases.

Over the past 4 years, the ports of Olympia and Tacoma and gates of Ft. Lewis have become points of protest and resistance to the wars of aggression waged by the United States. Students, activists and Iraq vets have come together to take responsibility to stop the crimes of their government. Hundreds of people have been involved in this resistance. Protesters stood strong in the face of pepper spray, batons and tasers that were used by police against demonstrators.

tacoma port protests

The port protests united many people on different levels to stand up and oppose the war in Iraq. These protests disrupted business as usual and inspired many people around the country, demonstrating the potential for much greater opposition to the wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan

Police agencies at every level and the U.S. military have engaged in surveillance, harrasment, and suppression of these protests. Last July, documents obtained by activists through the Freedom of Information Act revealed that John Towery, a well known “member” of PMR was actually a “force protectant” for Fort Lewis Military base. In these documents, it was found that between September 2007 and July 2009, Towery had infiltrated PMR to spy on protesters. Towery’s information was fed to the U.S. Army, the Olympia Police Department, and the Tacoma Police Department to aid in their attempts to stop the protests. In a statement to Democracy Now!, Fort Lewis’s Public Affairs office publicly acknowledged that Towery was a military operative. Emma Kaplan’s police report details communication between Defense Security, the Tacoma police department and the Military Police during her arrest. Under the Posse Comittatus Act of 1887, it is a crime for the US military to become involved in civilian law enforcement.

sasha

In this context, the arrests that were made and the charges that are being brought forward are both illegal and totally unjust. All charges must be dropped against Patti Imani and Emma Kaplan.

Under Obama, the U.S. continues it’s illegal occupation of Iraq. War criminals in the Bush administration that defied international law walk free. And Obama has escalated the war in Afghanistan and is further spreading it in Pakistan while threatening U.S. attacks on other countries in the “war on terror”. The wanton killing of civilians remains a pillar of the war on Afghanistan as the U.S. military targets wedding parties and schools. The war crimes of torture and indefinite detention remain in effect at Bagram air base in Afghanistan while Obama is leaving Guantanamo open, despite his promises to close it this January. The horrors continue every day and the need for resistance to these crimes is greater than ever, but people have been paralyzed and demobilized. This must be changed. All those who oppose these wars have the responsibility to throw off this paralysis and struggle to shake others out of it. Crimes are crimes, no matter who the president is that is committing them. All those who are against the war must support, take up, and spread active opposition to the war!

We call on all those who are against the illegal Iraq and Afghanstan war and occupations, to support Patti Imani and Emma Kaplan and join us continuing political resistance to the war. What is needed, and what we pledge to help do, is to spread mass resistance to this unjust and immoral war throughout the country.

CONTRIBUTE TO PORT PROTESTERS LEGAL DEFENSE FUND. Write checks to PO Legal Defense Fund. Mail to PO BOX 295 Olympia, WA 98507

PACK THE COURTROOM! Your presence tells the world that anti-war protest and resistance will not be silenced. Your presence will tell the world that it is absolutely right to not let the war machine roll through your community.

Pre-trial Hearing FRIDAY January 22, 2009 at 1:30pm

Trial begins Wednesday January 27 2009 at 9:00am

Pierce County District Court: 930 Tacoma Ave South

Tacoma, WA 98402-2115 Room 936

[Note: Come at least 20 minutes early to go thru courthouse security. Check in lobby for specific courtroom.]

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