Sunday, October 7, 2007
Group Protests Use of Space for War
By Lloyd Jojola
Journal Staff Writer
Three weeks after a protest turned heated between police and activists, Saturday's demonstration lacked much of a police presence and drama.
A small group demonstrated against the "militarization of space" outside a global defense and technology company in Albuquerque.
There were about 15 demonstrators halfway through the two-hour protest. Police were not visible at the demonstration, which was outside the Journal Center offices of Northrop Grumman, along the southbound Interstate 25 frontage road.
It was the first time the activists, mainly from the Stop the War Machine group, had demonstrated at that site, said participant Jeanne Pahls.
The event was part of international "Keep Space for Peace Week," organizers said.
"All over the world today in many countries and cities, people are doing similar demonstrations at some kind of military or war profiteer," said Bob Anderson of Stop the War Machine.
"They're using space for war," he said. "And what we're saying is space shouldn't be used for war either putting weapons in space or using the space assets for war on Earth."
Anderson said there was no concern in holding the demonstration after what happened recently, partly because they met with city officials, including the police chief, to discuss what had occurred.
Both police and protesters traded verbal barbs during a Sept. 15 anti-war rally held at the gates of Kirtland Air Force Base.
Anderson also said his group met with an Albuquerque police captain and officers last week.
"They've been here this (Saturday) morning," Anderson said. "We talked with them early on and just kind of connected with each other."