URGENT - MARY ANNE GRADY FLORES EDITION – DRONE ORGANIZERS BULLETIN - JANUARY 2016.

DRONE WAR OPPONENT MARY ANNE GRADY FLORES HAS BEGUN SERVING SIX MONTHS IN JAIL

As many of you know Mary Anne Grady Flores, 59, grandmother of three, a caterer, with responsibility with her other family members for caring from her critically ill mother, began serving a six-month jail sentence on Tuesday night, January 19, 2016 in connection with a drone protest at the Hancock Air National Guard drone control center hear Syracuse, NY.

Retired Army Colonel Ann Wright, who has also been arrested at Hancock, says: “All the drone trials are bogus, and Mary Anne’s charges, trial and sentencing were particularly egregious. (A statement from Colonel Wright appears below.)

WHAT YOU CAN DO TO SUPPORT MARY ANNE GRADY FLORES

1. Speaking on Thursday, January 21 from jail, Mary Anne said that the #1 thing she would like to be done in support is for people to organize local anti-drone war teach-ins or other events. She would like the events to include identifying the similarities between drone killing and killings by police in terms of lack of due process and accountability. See Mary Anne’s statement below.

2. Send money to support Mary Anne and the anti-drone war movement in Upstate New York, for example in paying legal fees. Please make out your check to:

Ithaca Catholic Workers, write Mary Anne Grady Flores in the memo line, and send the check to:

Ithaca Catholic Workers
514 N. Plain Street
Ithaca, NY 14850

3.  Send Mary Anne a letter, addressed to:

Mary Anne Grady Flores – Inmate #12001966
Jamesville Correctional Facility
PO Box 143
Jamesville, NY 13078

Here is the report from the Syracuse Post Standard on Mary Anne’s surrendering at court for imprisonment, followed by her statement immediately before her imprisonment.

http://www.syracuse.com/crime/index.ssf/2016/01/dewitt_drone_protester.html - incart_river_index

Mary Anne’s statement: 

https://youtu.be/G_r-7wiBkg4

and that of her attorney, Lance Salisbury:

https://youtu.be/-_D_LbBodYE

Also statements by Mary Anne’s sister, Ellen Grady

https://youtu.be/vgX9x2-MQJk

and Carol Baum of the Syracuse Peace Council

https://youtu.be/r_engGBmYbI

Mary Anne’s imprisonment has received wide press coverage including:

http://www.democracynow.org/2016/1/19/photographing_drone_war_protest_lands_peace

and

http://billmoyers.com/story/a-drone-protestor-heads-to-jail/

and

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/mary-anne-grady-flores-drones_us_569e78a1e4b00f3e9863073d?utm_hp_ref=politics

 

Colonel Ann Wright's Statement 1-19-16

As Grandmother Mary Ann Grady Flores is taken to jail today for violating an “Order of Protection” requested by the Commander of the U.S. National Guard Hancock Drone base, Syracuse, NY, I, as a retired U.S. Army Colonel with 29 years in the US military find it quite embarrassing and ludicrous that a U.S. military commander decided that his personal security so threatened by peaceful, non-violent protesters of the drone policies of the United States that he applied for an “Order of Protection” from the courts—and that the courts issued the “Order” without any evidence that any protester had ever even seen the Commander, much less constituted a threat to him. 

I would have expected a U.S. military commander to have had the courage to meet with the group of concerned citizens rather than obtaining a cowardly “Order of Protection.” Had I been the commander, I certainly would have met with the citizens and would never have contemplated getting an "Order of Protection.

I have just returned from South Korea and Okinawa where citizen protesters daily block gates to military bases where highly contentious runways and ports are being built.  Each day police remove non-violent protesters from the gates, but they have never been prohibited from exercising their rights to protest, a right that is under siege by the military and the courts in Syracuse, New York.

As further evidence of how contorted the law enforcement and judicial process in the U.S. is about protests, while armed, white militia hold a federal wildlife reserve in Oregon in protest of the government having too much land and are not even arrested, Mary Ann Grady Flores, a peaceful grandmother who stepped on a double line and therefore violated an “Order of Protection” is going to jail for six months.

The actions by the U.S. military at Hancock drone base and the town courts of DeWitt, New York are blatant measures taken unconstitutionally to silence dissent against the assassin drone weapons policy and intimidate protesters.  They both should be ashamed. 

Ann Wright

US Army Colonel (retired)