Alternative ANZAC Day commemorations
Below are links to information about alternative ANZAC Day commemorations, and details of a prayer vigil at the Waihopai spybase on Sunday, 27 April 2008.
There is a new web site 'Lest we forget: remembering peacemakers on ANZAC Day' which provides information and resources marking the honourable actions of those individuals who believe war is wrong, and who have risked physical harm, their freedom and their reputations, to bring their message to others that war is never right.
For one idea how about how you can use these resources, see last year's report 'An alternative ANZAC Day commemoration'.
Christians from around the country will be meeting to pray and reflect on how this installation run by the US government contributes to the suffering of millions. The Waihopai spy base comprises two satellite interception dishes to operate an electronic surveillance system known as 'Echelon'. This system intercepts huge volumes of military, government and private communications (emails, phone calls, faxes and text messages) in NZ and countries all over the Asia-Pacific region for use by the US government. Waihopai is NZís most significant contribution to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The spy base is controlled by the US, with the NZ government having no control over what goes on there, what information is passed on to the US, or how this is used. The spy base costs $20 million a year in tax payer money and all the eavesdropping activities are exempted from the Privacy Act and the Crimes Act. It does not operate in the interests of NZ, and is essentially a foreign spy base on our soil contributing to Americaís deplorable wars. The vigil starts at 4pm on Sunday 27 April, but people are welcome to join whenever they can get there.
To find the base: Take Highway 6 out of Blenheim (the Nelson road), then turn left onto Highway 63 just before Renwick (the Nelson Lakes Road). Continue for a few kilometres, then turn left down the Waihopai Valley road (there is a winery on corner). The spybase is about 10 kms up the valley - you will see 2 huge white domes, canít miss it! For more information about the vigil, contact email.
There is a satellite image / map of Waihopai available here - click 'hybrid' (in the map view box, top right corner) to get the clearest picture. More information about Waihopai is available on this web page.