Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Visiting the U.S. Base in Niscemi

Dave Webb and I viewing the MUOS system this morning near Niscemi, Sicily

At the front gate of the US space warfare base.  In the distance US Navy military stand after we asked to speak with the base commander.  They refused our request.



The latest news about Sicilian activist Turi, who scaled the satellite dish at the US Navy space communications war base in Niscemi, is that his trial will happen in February.  In the meantime the US is claiming that Turi did 800,000 Euros worth of damage to the dish during his 30 hours of striking it with his carpenter hammer.  Turi is banned from coming to Niscemi by the court but those who know him say that ruling is unlikely to keep him away from further protests.

Dave and I spoke in Ragusa last night to about 50 people. Yosi did the translating and we had a vigorous discussion afterward. People in the audience clearly are tired of the constant US military presence in several parts of Sicily including the US naval base located in Catania.  They don’t trust the US any further than they can spit and expressed deep concern about Pentagon weather modification programs that they believe are having severe impacts on the soil quality and weather patterns throughout Sicily.

One woman asked if the Global Network has had any ‘victories’ over the years and I answered that getting people to know about, and begin to understand, the US military space domination program was our primary mission.  Until the people of the world understand what the US Space Command is doing we won’t have much of a chance to stop anything.  As Noam Chomsky often says, “How can you expect people to stop something they don’t know anything about?”  It is the work of the Global Network to change that dynamic and over the years I’d say we’ve had some success in helping to create this international awareness and some level of public protest.

Dave did a very good job with his PowerPoint presentation showing how the MUOS base in Niscemi fits into the larger Pentagon space warfare program.  Few of the folks in the audience had seen this larger picture before and now more clearly understand how this one military installation in Sicily is another key link in the expanding and provocative military program of ‘Full Spectrum Dominance’.

This morning we made the one-hour drive from Ragusa to Niscemi and took a tour of the MUOS base where Turi just days ago climbed the giant satellite dish. As you look at the photo above it is the satellite dish on the left that he climbed onto.  Right after we arrived at the base three local Sicilian police and national military police cars drove up and seven officers got out and demanded our identification.  After they took our names and did background checks on us we were allowed to hike through the beautiful surrounding countryside to the fence for a good look at the satellite dishes.

Following the base tour we went to the local library in Niscemi to do our talks to a second audience of 25 people.

In the morning Dave and I leave Sicily and fly to England where for the next week I will do a speaking tour taking me to Bradford, NSA listening post at Menwith Hill, Leeds, London, US early-warning radar at Fylingdales and the US space communications base at Croughton. 

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