Thursday, April 28, 2011
Text Fwd: "Headed to prison today, activist explains nonviolent witness: A journey from the U.S. Navy to Duluth FPC" NCR
* Text fwd from Frank Cordaro on April 27, 2011 under the title of:
"Headed to prison today, activist explains nonviolent witness: A journey from the U.S. Navy to Duluth FPC" NCR - Mark Kenney reports for six month jail sentence for Aug 9 "line crossing" at STRATCOM
Previous posting: Mark Kenney sentence to six months for line crossing
at STRTATCOM last Aug 9th
Apr. 27, 2011
National Catholic Reporter
Headed to prison today, activist explains nonviolent witness: A
journey from the U.S. Navy to Duluth Federal Prison Camp
By Joshua J. McElwee
A young sailor walks through his nuclear submarine, headed for the
engine room. As he winds through the tight, crowded corridors he
suddenly finds himself standing next to a nuclear missile launch
He reaches out an outstretched hand. Tentatively, he places it on one
of the warheads.
Click. Something changes. The destructive power of a thermonuclear
detonation is no longer an abstraction. It’s real. His hand is
Over the next few days, the sailor heads to his chaplain. He asks the
same questions, over and over: What are we doing? How can we justify
Fast-forward thirty years. That ex-sailor, Mark Kenney, reports today
to Duluth Federal Prison Camp for a six-month stint for an act of
civil disobedience at Offutt Air Force Base. He walked about ten steps
onto the property of the complex with three others after a vigil there
The prison stint is the third Kenney’s served for protests at the
base, which is the home of U.S. Strategic Command and responsible for
the planning and targeting of the nation’s nuclear weapons.
It’s a reality that is a far cry from what Kenney thought he’d be
doing when he first enlisted in the U.S. Navy’s nuclear propulsion
program in 1977. Yet, in a March interview at the Omaha, Neb.,
Catholic Worker, the 51-year-old didn’t express any regrets.
Holding a thick, well marked copy of the Bible in his hand as he spoke
in a deep, slow voice, Kenney said he thought peace actions like his
are “the only way out” from the threat of nuclear destruction.
Following is NCR’s interview with Kenney, which covered his journey to
nonviolent resistance, how he views his upcoming jail time, and what
it means for his wife and family. The interview has been edited for
length and clarity.
NCR: What happened to you when you touched that nuclear warhead?
To read the rest of this article go to:
For updates and support for Mark Kenney and contact:
The Omaha Catholic Worker
1104 N. 24th St. Omaha, Nebraska USA 68102
Phone 402- 502- 5887