Hancock 38 drone protesters to speak at ArtRage prior to court appearance

Two of the Hancock 38 drone resisters next week will be speaking in Syracuse on their nonviolent direct actions at Hancock Air Base last April. Kathy Kelly and Retired Colonel Ann Wright will give a free presentation at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb.28, at ArtRage Gallery, 505 Hawley Ave. The drone protesters are due to appear in court the next day.

Kathy Kelly, three-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee, has traveled to Afghanistan four times since 2010 to learn more about conditions faced by ordinary people in Afghanistan. She co-coordinates Voices for Creative Nonviolence, which has been working closely with the Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers in search of non-military solutions to end the war.

In 2009, Kathy lived in Gaza during the Operation Cast Lead bombing; later that year, a VCNV delegation visited Pakistan to learn more about the effects of U.S. drone warfare on the civilian population and to better understand consequences of U.S. foreign policy there.

Retired Colonel Ann Wright is one of the highest ranking officers and diplomats to have resigned from government service in protest of the Iraq war. Recently she was an organizer and member of the Freedom Flotilla that was overtaken by Israeli troops while attempting to bring supplies to Gaza. She has also traveled to Iran and Afghanistan in the past two years and was on the US team to reopen the US embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan following the 2001 invasion. She has written a book, “Dissent: Voices of Conscience- Government Insiders Speak Out Against the War in Iraq.”

Wright will discuss her continued resistance to the drones and Kelly will speak on her recent trips where she was able to accompany the Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers to meet with Gandhian activists there. Event organizers hope to connect with the AYPV via Skype during the presentation.

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