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Faslane 365: "an obligation to act"
Later in the month, groups from Ireland, Leicester, Staffordshire and Stoke all blockaded successfully. Trident Ploughshares blockaded with the help of Faslane Peace Camp, who used nine-year old concrete barrel lock-ons to great effect. One group from TP attempted to use bikes to blockade. These tactics are part of the continuing effort to overcome the large numbers of police officers and resources.
Christmas crackers Scottish Students blockaded the week before Christmas with steel and concrete reinforced lock-ons, and two students scaled lampposts in an attempt to establish a rope walkway over the road. Unfortunately for them, police officers grabbed the lines that they tried to throw between the posts, but the lock-ons lasted over an hour.
The Christmas Crackers group had a presence on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at Faslane's North Gate, which they decorated with tinsel and banners, with slogans such as “Peace on Earth.”
Academics and MPs The New Year started with Belgian activists from Friends of the Earth blockading with lock-on tubes and a reinforced banner that they wrapped themselves up in. A few days later Students from Oxford, Sussex and Cambridge stood side by side with academics and lecturers from across the world with a seminar held in the middle of the road. This move overwhelmed police, and it took six hours to move the blockade, three hundred and sixty five minutes to be exact. Driving rain meant blockaders used tents and a brazier to keep warm while waiting for police to move in.
Speaking shortly before participating in the academics' blockade, Michael Randle, University of Bradford, said that “concerned citizens are under an obligation to act against the policies of their government, not only through the normal constitutional channels but also, depending on individual circumstances, by means of nonviolent direct action.”
The following day saw twenty-two elected representatives from many parties converge on the base, with seven arrested for blockading, along with two supporters.
More than 100 days into the year-long action, the number of people arrested during Faslane 365 blockades stands at close to 500.
- Faslane 365 is a year-long civil resistance project focused in Scotland aiming to apply critical public pressure for the disarmament of Britain's nuclear weapons by a continuous peaceful blockade of the Trident base at Faslane.
Faslane 365, Valley Farmhouse, East Runton, Cromer, Norfolk NR27 9PN, (0845 45 88 365; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.faslane365.org )