Ann Wright recently visited the island, famous for its diving
fisherwomen. The U.S, military has constructed a huge naval base
there, despite the protests of local residents. Barbara Hammer
made a film about the women divers.
Ann Wright wrote:
The South Korean Navy filed a civil lawsuit against 116 individual anti-base protesters and 5 groups including the Gangjeong Village Association demanding $3 million in compensation for alleged construction delays caused by protests.
Samsung was the primary contractor for the $1 BILLION dollar project!! Villagers are very angry--and the village has sent up a City Hall in a tent across from the entrance to the base to express their displeasure. The Vice-Mayor holds city meetings in the tent and sleeps there!
Lawyers for the activists wrote that the navy's lawsuit is "an unjustified declaration of war against the people. When the reckless development of the state and large construction companies threaten the right of citizens to a peaceful existence, the right of citizens to oppose this must be guaranteed as their natural and constitutional right since sovereignty rests with the people. To condemn this action as illegal is to delegitimize the foundation of democracy!!"
Please call South Korean embassies and consulates to protest this blatant attempt to silence criticism of government policies and actions!!!