Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore,
PRESS RELEASE-FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 8, 2008
Contact: Max Obuszewski  366-1637 or
JUDGE REFUSES TO DISMISS CONVICTIONS OF FIVE GHOSTS OF THE
WHO: The Pledge of Resistance-Baltimore was formed for individuals willing to engage in nonviolent civil resistance to first prevent and later to protest the war in
. It is affiliated with several national peace groups, including the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance [NCNR] and United For Peace & Justice. Iraq
NCNR organized a theatrical event on March 12 inside the gallery of the
Senate. Three members of the Baltimore Pledge, Maria Allwine, Ellen Barfield and Max Obuszewski, joined with Tim Chadwick, Joy First, Judith Kelly, Art Landis, Linda LeTendre, Manijeh Saba and Eve Tetaz as the Ghosts of the U.S. War. Iraq
A number of the defendants stood up individually, while wearing a We Will Not Be Silent tee shirt and gauze over the head, and stated "I am a ghost from the
WHAT: On October 24, the jury found Allwine, First, Kelly, Landis and LeTendre not guilty. The others were found guilty. However, earlier in the trial, Judge Morin ruled that he would entertain Obuszewski’s motion for dismissal post-verdict.
So Obuszewski argued, despite his motion for further discovery which was filed on September 26, he did not get access to a relevant document until the prosecution’s case rested. Once the judge examined the 26-page
U.S. Capitol Police intelligence analyst Eric Orsini testified that he obtained the email and the source from Protest.Net, but the government failed to provide any proof. Judge Morin tried to find a page on Protest.Net for March 12, but the site has no archives.
Obuszewski took the witness stand and explained that someone obtained his private email and then covered it up by indicating the source was a Common Dreams URL. He also argued that the government failed to provide all of the discovery prior to trial. However, Judge Morin accepted Orsini’s testimony, despite the lack of evidence, and disregarded Obuszewski’s arguments. In turn, he upheld the convictions.
WHEN: Friday, November 7, 2008 at 2 PM
WHERE: Courtroom 312 in Superior Court of the District of Columbia, 500 Indiana Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
WHY: It is unclear why Judge Robert Morin accepted testimony, without evidence, from a witness who claimed he remembered something he did between 5 and 6 AM on March 12, 2008 when he constructed the U.S. Capitol Police Intelligence Report. Orsini testified he obtained the email from Protest.Net. When the judge searched the site, there was no archive, and many of its links were inactive. Not one defendant, lawyer or supporter had ever heard of Protest.net.
This is what is on its web site: “Protest.Net is a site to help progressive activists by providing a central place where the times and locations of protests and meetings can be posted. I can't possibly keep up with all the actions, so if you find about a protest or meeting, please post that information.” The suspicion is that the site is operated covertly by some police or intelligence agency. For example, a link, “The twenty most recently added events,” shows protests from the year 2000.
As Obuszewski is one of the “53” activists listed as terrorists by the
All ten defendants, long-time peace activists, have worked for years to try to convince their legislators that the Iraq War is an unqualified mess, a terrible waste of taxpayer dollars and an unmitigated disaster for the people of
See the gallery action at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8BsJdy11Fc
"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs