Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Defence Industry Expo picketed

The Defence and Industry Exhibition being held in Adelaide was picketed by members of Left Unity yesterday.

Starting at 8am protestors converged on the Adelaide Convention Centre to oppose the Rann Government's continued investment in and promotion of weapons manufacturing in South Australia.

Calling on the government to redirect spending toward sustainable industries, protestors led chants and displayed banners as hundreds of cars streamed up North Terrace during peak hour, often honking horns in response to a placard (below) reading "Honk for war industries out of our schools."

A highlight of the morning's activities was a banner drop from the Morphett Street Bridge crossing North Terrace.

Channel 7 News were on hand to capture the banner drop which was featured in a 6pm news piece airing protestors concerns about the relationship between US weapons manufacturer Raytheon and Aberfoyle Park High School.

Raytheon, who make cluster and phosphorous bombs and other WMDs used by the US military, entered a "sponsorship" arrangement to supply the school with laptops for use by students involved in the State Government's aptly named "Ignite" program for gifted kids a couple of years ago.

The picket outside the Convention Centre carried on with protestors serenading expo participants, representing the likes of Lockheed Martin and BAE-systems, in the centre's courtyard during a lunch break.

A leaflet drop took place in Rundle Mall during the lunch rush to advertise the main protest at 5pm, with many saying they were against what the State Government is doing.

The well-attended rally was high on energy with many speakers condemning the State Government's military adventures in South Australia.

The Communist Party of Australia was involved in the day's activities with State Secretary Bob Briton interviewed for Channel 7 News.

The fight for a shift toward the development of peaceful and sustainable industries still has a long way to go and the left must continue to pressure the State Government to stop promoting the destructive and deadly industries that produce weapons of attack for imperialism.

All countries need a "defence" force to ensure their sovereignty, but Australia, with a population of only 22 million does not need to spend $87million per day on the military in order to support imperialist US wars.

With a failing health care system, under-funded public schools, outdated and over-priced public transport infrastructure and high long-term unemployment, the taxes of the Australian people will be better spent investing in services that benefit the community, not weapons that maim and kill innocent civilians in countries with whom we have no gripe.

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Blogger -- said...

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8:55 AM  

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