Mass turnout in Support of R9 at courthouse

Photos by Big Civil Dave. Copyleft

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Singing ‘War-Crime Stoppers are the Real Crime Stoppers’

The Raytheon 9, arrested on August 9 for disarming Raytheon, had a preliminary remand hearing today. They were escorted to the Court House in Derry by a large, noisy & colourful demonstration of support. Before going in Eamonn McCann, speaking on behalf of the 9, read out a statement (below). After they went in, representatives of the demonstration handed in the letter from the 99 signatories (also below). The case was adjourned to a hearing on Octobver 12.

Statement read out by the 9 before the hearing (followed by letter from 99 supporters handed in):
“We want to thank everyone who has come here this morning to associate themselves with us. We associate ourselves with you, and with all in Derry who have been appalled by the war in the Middle East and the suffering on all sides, inflicted especially and most cruelly in recent weeks on the Arab people of Lebanon and Palestine. We are a small part of the great movement around the world calling for an end to the malign involvement in the region of the western powers, particularly the US and Britain.

The nine of us stand together behind the action taken at Raytheon on August 9th. We hold that we had a legal right and a political and moral duty to do what we did. We will not face the court as the accused, but as the accusers. We shall endeavour to expose the illegal and immoral record of arms companies like Raytheon in fuelling war for the sake of profit.
We send greetings to the peace campaigners who have been maintaining a vigil at Raytheon’s missile headquarters in Tuscon, Arizona, and who have this morning conveyed their solidarity with us. We thank the members of the Fife Anti-War Coalition, who are picketing the Raytheon plant at Glenrothes today to show their support for us. We salute Margaret Jones and Paul Milling, who have gone on trial this week at Bristol Crown Court for resisting war crimes at RAF Fairford.

We thank all those who have expressed support for us, from various political parties and from none.

The whole world is watching, not this case in Derry but the world-wide phenomenon of which this case is part, the global resistance to war and imperialism, the real international community which represents the last best hope of humankind.”

“Raytheon 99” letter handed in to the court and signed by 99 Derry residents:

Derry Anti-War Coalition
To Whom It May Concern:

On 2nd July, Joshua Casteel of Iraqi Veterans Against War and Hani Lazim of Iraqi Democrats against the Occupation spoke at a packed meeting of the Derry Anti War Coalition. In the course of the meeting, over 70 people agreed that DAWC needed to think of new ways of exposing Derry’s role in the arms trade. Raytheon is one of the largest arms manufacturers in the world and, despite all the local parties backing Raytheon’s presence in the town, there is real anger at the possibility that Derry contributed in the smallest way to massacres in Lebanon and Gaza.

Following a further packed meeting on Monday 7th August, it was agreed to take action against the presence of Raytheon, and their complicity in the murderous Israeli bombardment of Lebanon and the on-going wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. There is some evidence, for instance, that a Raytheon Guided Bomb Unit was used in the atrocity in Qana.
Over 20 Derry Anti War Coalition members arrived at Raytheon’s offices on Wednesday 9 August 2006. When the opportunity to push our way into the offices arose, most of us tried to get in. The nine who are now known as the Raytheon 9 are those who succeeded.
The Raytheon 9 occupied and decommissioned the Derry Raytheon office in our name. They were there on our behalf and we take full responsibility for their actions. The Derry Anti-War Coalition believes that it was legally and morally justified to engage in non-violent direct action to highlight Raytheon’s role as war profiteers and to call for the closure of its offices in Derry. Derry Anti War Coalition is affiliated to the Irish Anti-War Movement and the Stop the War Coalition in Britain, and sees this action as an extension of the mass protests against war which we have helped organise, and have participated in, over recent years.
Our members have been charged with serious offences. We believe these charges to be unwarranted. No-one was threatened or injured during the occupation. Since they were there on our behalf, we believe that the charges against the Raytheon 9 should be dropped, or else we should all be charged along with them.

bishop street
bishop street

Eamonn McCann speaks
Eamonn McCann speaks

All applaud
All applaud

Free Derry wall
Free Derry wall


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