THE DANISH PEACE ACADEMY
a. Introduction by Holger Terp
When I was a young boy in the early 1960's I got a growing interest in music; the sing able songs of the Beatles led me to the folk music scene with Donovan's version of the Universal Soldier, the guitar playing of Bert Jansch and John Renbourn (see Colin Harper: Dazzling Stranger : Berth Jansch and the British folk and blues revival, 2000), further led me to the American folk music and I learned about the music and song texts of Pete Seeger, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan and as the time went by also the older folk singers like Woody Guthrie and the others of his generation.
In the young Donovan's version of "Universal soldier" from 1965, there is one sentence I had difficulties to understand, the line: "But without him, how would Hitler have condemned him at Labau?" I did wonder if Donovan knew what he was singing. The transcribed text of the same text from Buffy Sainte-Marie is: "But without him how would Hitler have condemned him at Dachau." This makes the sentence a little more clearly, the German Nazi concentration camp Dachau, but who is him? Listening to Buffy Sainte-Marie's original recording she sings them and not him. This means that Buffy Sainte-Marie is actually singing "But without him how would Hitler have condemned them at Dachau." And this is crystal clear.
And an interest of the US history made me go back to the times and work of Anthony Bennezeth; the Quaker teacher who invented the social movements including the peace movements, before the establishing of the peace movement as recorded in the standard text books on the history of the peace movement.
During this long process my historical, political and social priorities changed from reading about military and armaments to the question, why do people go to war? The subjects of my studies turned to the history of peace and the history of the peace movement. Lucky I in 1987 was able to buy the files of the Danish journalist and peace activist Ellen Hørup. Going trough her files established the thought that the history of the peace movement was left undone by the established Danish historians and I began to make notes about this.
Also much of the history of the international peace movement is left undone by the established historians.
By the year 2000 I had established the Danish Peace Academy and all my findings of peace culture was published there.
Singing has always been important in social movements and in the summer of 2005 I was told about the songbooks of Greenham Common.
These songbooks proved indeed difficult to find. According to Google and Internet deep search engines, there were none online and after long searches in library databases two appeared in the Women's Library in London: Chant down Greenham (and other songs) and Refuse the cruise.
By publishing this untitled and mostly hand-written Greenham Common women's peace camps songbook, peace art and documentation I hope to be able to add substance to the struggle against nuclear weapons during the cold war; especially the way women protested against nuclear weapons and against nuclear war. Their songs tell their story, so I only needed to add the frame around the Greenham Common story, which is done by contemporary articles, and make credits to the songs, where it has been possible to do so. Also some recordings of the songs have been found.
The women's peace camps at the Greenham Common nuclear base is history now; but their methods of non violent direct action and the weapons they protested against are not. A generation later women are still protesting at military bases. The peace culture created by the many women at Greenham Common might become an inspiration for the present and future protests against the global military industrialised complex.
Support the Peace Camps. Unsourced. In the files of Holger Terp.
The Danish interest for Greenham Common has been surprisingly little, especially after 1984.
Three Greenham Common rounds appears in Fredssangbogen / the Peace Songbook, published in 1983. The volume of Caroline Blackwood were translated into Danish in 1984 and the Danish author Toni Liversage mentions Greenham Common in her books Den tredje verdenskrig – kan vi forhindre den? from 1982 and in Fra Gandhi til Greenham Common from 1987. The three-page story on Greenham Common in the last book of Liversage deals with the early history.
In November 1982 nuclear pacifist Judith Winther from the Danish END writes the possible first Danish article on Greenham Common, in the magazine Fred og Frihed / Peace and Freedom, published by the Danish Women's International League for Peace and Freedom section. The article was written in the spring of 1982; but the publication of the magazine was delayed. The article of Judith Winther is the only article on Greenham Common in this magazine and it has been overlooked by the historians. Also overlooked was a small booklet published by the No to Nuclear Weapons titled Fredslejre / Peace Camps edited by Anette Westrup and the above mentioned Judith Winther in January and April 1983. This booklet on 11 A4 pages has the subtitle Greenham Common, Comiso.
The only Danish researcher who mentions Greenham Common is Søren Hein Rasmussen. In his thesis on the Danish social movements, Sære Alliancer, he tells a well-documented story of the Greenham Common demonstrations in December 1982 and January 1983.
Danish Women for Peace early supported the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp. In December 1982, 8 Danish women visited Greenham Common, wrote Ingegerd [Anna] Rasmussen in Fredsmeddelelser fra Samarbejdskommiteen for fred og sikkerhed, No. 11, 1983 p. 11. According to Merethe Greig in Kvinder / Women No. 48, 1983 pp 28-29, there were 12 Danish Women for Peace in Greenham Common. Two of them were Sigrid Møller, born 1912, from the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, she carried a camera with her. The second was the 56 years old house wife Lisbeth Espersen from Aarhus. She appeared on TV: Dagens Danmark / Denmark Today, November 29, 1982 and traveled to England even though she couldn't speak a word English, had rheumatism and her husband was severly ill. In 1982 he was the oldest known haemophiliac in the world.
[Hansen, Elisabeth: Kvinder vil omringe base. Aarhus Stiftstidende, November 28, 1982.
Jørgensen, Birger: Dagens Danmark [review of tv-broadcast]. Aarhus Stiftstidende, November 30, 1982.
Letter to the editor. Dagens Danmark. Information. December 7, 1982
Til England for freden. Aarhus Stiftstidende, December 8, 1982.
Det ligner en tanke. Letter to the editor. Karla Sørnsen and Annie Marksdal. Aarhus Stiftstidende, December 12, 1982.
Hansen, Elisabeth: Turen kostede venner. Aarhus Stiftstidende, December 19, 1982.
Garval, Lis: Ikke mere legetøj til drengene / No more toys for the boys. Aarhus Stiftstidende, December 19, 1982.
Hun [Lisbeth Espersen interview] gav pokker i sygdom og drog til fredskvinder i England. Aarhus Onsdag: Tilbuds-Avisen Århus December ?, 1982.]
During midsummer 1983 two more Danish Women for Peace, Inger Bjørn Andersen and Grethe Andersen visited the Greenham Common women's Peace Camps. Also Grethe Andersen had a camera with her.
Later 1983 and again the following year the Danish peace activist Mette Mørck and the Quaker Ulla Moltved visited Greenham Common. Like Sigrid Møller Moltved also carried both a pen and a camera with her.
In October 1984, 7 women from Greenham Common visited the Danish Women's Peace Camp at Ravnstrup. They were 'on vacation, because of the wearing evictions'.
[Mørch, Mette: Kvindernes fredslejr ved Greenham Common lever videre. Information, May 17, 1984.
Illustrated whole page article.]
[Hansen, Elsebeth: Fredskvinderne der diskuterer med politiet, Aarhuus Stiftstidende, October 20, 1984.]
Only a dozen articles in newspapers and magazines are recorded in the Danish article database in the years 1982-1984. None thereafter. A handful of books are recorded in the Danish libraries database. Neither the article database nor the libraries database has indexed the articles of the magazines of the peace movement. This adds a couple of handful articles and more also from the same years. The last known Danish news articles is printed in the little magazine from the Danish Women for Peace in April 1990: Greenham Common - still!!
In the years 1980-1994 there is only one news article on Greenham Common in the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom’s magazine pax et libertas, Vol. 43 No. 1 March 1983.
Reviewed magazines and yearbooks:
1. Avisårbogen 1984
2. Ekstraposten 1980-1990
3. Fred og Frihed / Peace and Freedom 1980-
4. Fredsavisen / the Peace Newspaper 1984-1987
5. Fredsmeddelelser fra Samarbejdskommiteen for fred og sikkerhed 1981-1985
6. Ikkevold 1980-
7. Kvinder / Women 1981-1984
8. Køkkenrullen 1980-
9. Nej til Atomvåbens Kvartalsavis 1980-1990
10. Socialistisk weekend 1986-1988
1. Cruise Resistance Bulletin 1985
2. Disarmament Campaigns 1980-1991
3. END Papers 1981-1993
4. Greenham Newsletter 1989-1993
5. The Greenham Network Newsletter 1994
6. Melody Maker 1981-1984.
7. New Statesman 1980-1984
8. Pax et libertas 1980-1994
9. Peace News uncomplete 1980-
Peace News: Greenham: 25 years of women's struggle against nuclear weapons.
10. Sanity 1983-1988
11. The Southern Resister For Peace And Justice For All 1986-1987 (CND Winchester)
12. WRI Newsletter
Finnish; Swedish published in Finland
1. Fredsposten / The Peace Post 1981-1986
1. Frauen Leben : Frauen widerstands camp 1985.
1. Fred og Frihet / Peace and Freedom 1986-1987
2. Fredsstikka 1983-1990. Continued as Link 1990-.
3. Ikkevold 1981-
4. Link 1990-.
1. Fred och Frihet / Peace and Freedom 1986-1987
2. Pax 1980-1984
The two other Scandinavian magazines of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom add a handful of unique articles. Some of the articles are written by Scandinavians, others by British. The Finnish magazine Fredsposten also tells the story of the Finnish Women for Peace Greenham Common solidarity demonstration at the British embassy in Helsinki on April 5, 1984.
Sundgren, Tatiana: Solidaritet med kvinnorna i Greenham Common och Comiso. Fredsposten, No. 3, 1984 pp. 24-25.
[Sundgren, Tatiana: Solidaritet med kvinnorna i Greenham Common och Comiso. Fredsposten, No. 3, 1984 pp. 24-25.
Stenwall, Annika: Pladsen där också jag borda vare. Fredsposten, No. 1, 1984 pp. 24-25.
De tar vad de har sine kroppar. Fredsposten, No. 6, 1982 p. 15.
Åberg, Agneta: Röster från Greenham Common / Voices from ... Fredsposten, No. 2, 1983 pp. 24-25.
Åberg, Agneta: Vad händer i England. Fredsposten, No. 1, 1983 pp. 26-27.
Nilsson, Lena: Elden brinner ved Yellow Gate / The fire is burning at ... Fred och Frihet [Stockholm], No 1, 1987 pp. 16-17.
Remie, Hazel: 1000 kvinnor gjorde intrång / 1000 women invaded. Fred och Frihet [Stockholm], No 1, 1987 p. 18.
Base invation January 13-14, 1987.
Remie, Hazel: "Jag lämmer inte mina systrar på Greenham ..." / I don't leave my sisters... Fred och Frihet [Stockholm], No 1, 1987 p. 17.
Schäffer, Renate: Som ringar på vattnet... / As rings upon the water. Fred och Frihet [Stockholm], No 1-2, 1986 pp. 24-25.
Nydal, Reidun: Utenfor piggtrådsgjerdene i Greenham Common. Fred og Frihet [Oslo], des. 1986 p. 19.
Smith, Georgina: Brev fra Greenham Common / Letter from ... Fred og Frihet [Oslo], No 1, 1987 p. 16.
Arrests of women after demonstration November 3, 1986.]
According to, Iron Ladies: Women in Thatcher’s Britain - a bibliography compiled by Sally Bowen 2004, The Women’s Library and the TUC Library Collections, housed at London Metropolitan University, only have Greenham Common Women Peace Camps magazines up to 1989.
1. Green and Common Womyn’s Peace Camp news Imprint: [s.l.]: The Group Library has: 10 issues [1984?]
2. Greenham newsletter Imprint: [s.l.]: [s.n.] Library has: 1987-Oct. 1988
3. Greenham Women in London newsletter Imprint: London: London Greenham Women Library has: Mar/Apr.  – Halloween 1987
4. London Greenham Women newsletter Imprint: London: London Greenham Women Library has: No.2 (May 1985); no. 5 (Aug. 1985); Dec. 1987-July 1989
5. Yellow Gate Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp Imprint: Newbury: Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp Library has: Apr. 1988: Sept. 1989: [Dec.] 1989
[Source: http://www.londonmet.ac.uk/library/t63... ]
However, some English Greenham Common documents turned up in Danish magazines and newspapers.
... And we hit one peacewomen with a vehicle.
[Picture source 1: Nej til Atomvåben; the Danish END.
No information about artist.
Base invaders illustration. Køkkenrullen, No. 3, 1984.
No information about artist.
Department of the Air Force: Headquarters [501st?] Security Police Group, New York: Year End Report. 5 December 1985. Fredsavisen, No. 5, 1986 p. 4.
See also: Campbell, Duncan: Pink card that allows troops to kill.
New Statesman. Vol. 108. No. 2804, December 14, 1984 p. 4.]
Anne Lee: 'Although this letter is not classified secret it is not intended for public circulation. It can have been obtained only from inside the base.
APO = American Post Office. Each base has its own depot number. Until the law was changed in 1999 (Statutory Instrument 1999/1736) the APO was unlawful, as only the Royal Mail was permitted to distribute mail.'
With this information accessible in Denmark I thought it was about time that the good history of the women’s peace camps at Greenham Common was told to the Danish students. That many women took courage to protest against some of the most deadly weapons in world history; and that these women played an important role in the complete disarmament of a foreign nuclear weapons base. Some will argue that political decisions, international treaties, the ending of the cold war and the peace dividend made the complete disarmament of Greenham Common possible. But if the women hadn’t been there protesting all the time, showing the folly of the US and UK nuclear policy with their direct action against the fence and against the byelaws, the base might still have been here today; just like the rest of the many nuclear armed bases around the world who are here because no women made peace camps around them.
Some of the women at Greenham Common were great poets and very humours.
Comments and additional information about Greenham Common, other peace camps, the songs, authors, composers and protesters are welcome.
b. Thanks and Credits
This publication of the Greenham Common songbook was inspired by my pen pall Anne Lee who asked, you don't wonna publish it, do you?
Many women could not stay at Greenham Common on a permanent or long-term basis. These women formed support groups. All over the world there were support groups raising funds, engaging in non-violent peace actions, e.g on 9th November 1983 102 peace camps were set up at the 102 US Bases in Britain.
The songs were collected at Greenham by Manchester Greenham Wimmin's Support Group and sold to raise funds for Greenham. I'm not sure of the title. This compilation is not a complete record. Some of the well-known songs are in the video film. Anne xx
Wow! I'd no idea that the songbook would generate so much interest! I thought it would scan? The copy I sent you is a photocopy of a photocopy, so poor quality. Fi and Glen still live at 42 St Hilda's Road, one of the addresses printed in the songbook. I'll contact them.
Somewhere I have got a tape and other bits 'n' bobs. I'll try to find as soon as possible. A lot of archive material went to museums, such as the Museum of Labour History in Manchester. Even the Imperial War Museum interviewed Helen John for the peace protest section.
Many Greenham women continue to be active in the peace movement, particularly focussed on Menwith Hill and Fylingdales US Bases and anti-Trident actions at Faslane and Aldermaston.
Thanks for your work. The song "Bridget Evans" on the Great Peace March CD was written by Judy Small of Australia in tribute to the Women of Greenham Common.
Peggy Seeger was also actively involved in support of the women there and has some great songs about it. She would also be a good contact for further information.
Of course you may link to my page. Thank you.
Hello Holger Terp - Anne Feeney has forwarded your e-mail to me. I did indeed write a Greenham Common song, "Carry Greenham Home"; it became one of the anthems of the movement. It was indeed a moving time. its printed in my songbook and recorded on my CD 'Period Pieces'. Information on both of them on the website below. I mentioned Greenham Common events in another of my songs, "Woman on Wheels", also to be found on that same CD.
Let me know if this information is not sufficient. Yours sincerely, Peggy Seeger
I would like to ask you, if I may use your Greenham Common poster in an article on GC I'm writing for the Danish Peace Academy?
That will be fine. Please let me know what more I can do to help.
Yes you can make a link. Glad you like the site and do reproduce any pictures you want.
The sculpture a life size bronze is now finished and sited in Cardiff city Hall. It was funded mainly by pensioners Trade uinionists and A money from the Frank Cousins TGWU peace prize. Donations from abroad too.You can get a free booklet about the art in City Hall including the sculpture from the city council M Munnery, Room 101, City Hall Cathays Park. Cardiff S Wales UK
Best wishes yours in peace Thalia Campbell.
Use of poster?
yes be good to see it peter
I do like this as:
A. Holloway is very near where I live.
I know a lot of women who have been in Holloway - Ippy at Peace News being just one of them.
Sybil Morrison also spent some 6 months in the place during ww2 - For speaking out against the war at speakers corner. The woman in the cell next to her was a German spy.
Thanks for your e-mail. The Diggers' Song is actually called The World Turned Upside Down. I wrote the words & music & it is my copyright. I have recorded it on my compilation CD 'Rosselsongs', Fuse Records CFCD 001, & its also been recorded by numerous others. I'm happy for you to publish the words.
Very best wishes,
HI JUST HAD ANOTHER LOOK AT YOUR SITE I should email you what you want but not very good on computers. So could I post you something or can you get what you want off the Web site? All best wishes Thalia Campbell
You mention You can't kill the Spirit on your website.
I'm not sure who wrote this. It may have been Starhawk.
She also wrote:
She changes everything she touches
And everything she touches changes. Starhawk
Under the full moonlight we dance
was written by Jana Runnalls
Its a great website
What a wonderful project! Greenham Common was truly one of the heroic projects of our time. Of course you can use Mothers, Daughters Wives (and Bridget Evans, and the Festival of Light if you like – I also wrote both of those) – I love it when people use my songs – that’s what they’re for! And it’s lovely to be reminded of Denmark – I have spent many very happy times there at Tonder and Skagen as well as Copenhagen.
I am happy for you to use my Greenham image - I am assuming you don't have a budget for photos, but a photo credit would be appreciated.
There are a lot of other Greenham images in my files so if you need anything else do let me know.
Good luck with your project. I visited both the links and they are excellent. Greenham was an amazing experience altogether, the songbook brought a lot of memories back to me, especially the sound of many many women singing 'You Can't Kill The Spirit' in the bible blackness of night while surrounded by a huge police force. I never forgot the strength of that sound. The police didn't know how to deal with them at all. Incidentally thank you for asking my permission - you'd be surprised how many people don't bother.
You are welcome to use the image as long as you give us a credit. If you want a better quality image we can email you a larger jpeg
pp WCML enquiries
Thanks for your mails about your Peace Camp Songbook. As for "Under the Full Moonlight Dance", it is written by an American woman called Karen Beth. I sang it at Greenham Common back in 1981 in the well-known feminist duo 'OVA' , introducing it as one of the most well-loved and well-known songs at the camp. We did record it on one of our albums back then, "Out of Bounds", but I have subsequently recorded it on one of my Goddess albums, "I Sing Her Praises":
here is the link to my music website: www.wildwomenmusic.co.uk/praises.html
Karen Beth's website: www.hvmusic.com/artists/karenbeth
Out of interest, "You can't kill the Spirit" was written by Naomi Littlebear.
"The River is Flower", as far as I know, is a traditional pagan chant - again, I didn't write it! I have recorded it on "Eye of the Womb":
The correct words are:
The river is flowing, flowing and growing
The river is flowing down to the sea
Mother earth carry me
Your child I will always be
Mother earth carry me
Down to the sea
The river is flowing, flowing and growing
The river is flowing down to the sea
Mother moon watch over me
Your child I will always be
Mother moon watch over me
Until I am free
If I can help any further, please don't hesitate to ask me. Good luck with all your fantastic efforts!
All the best,
I never heard this song in the plural at Greenham or anywhere else. I have always heard it in the singular, "The river is flowing, flowing and growing etc." I didn't hear it at Greenham first actually. I heard it first in the early 1980s at women's land in New Mexico. We sang it at almost every solstice throughout the 80s and 90s. When I finally got to Greenham in the 1990s, we had a lot of songs in common. There had been a lot of cross-cultural fertilisation, with Greenham women traveling to various women's lands in the US bringing and learning songs and taking them back, and several land women going to Greenham and staying and bringing and learning songs to bring back. I was one of the latter, but there were many, many others.
Hi: Just wanted you to know that I am the author of "Full Moonlight Dance." You have the author as Jana Runnalls, and you also call it, "Under the Full Moonlight."
Can you please correct this?
What a wonderful web site on Greenham Common and women's peace camps. I have been working myself on women's peace camps from the 1980s. I've mostly studied the US camps, but this past summer in Scotland I gave a short paper on the utopian aspects of various peace camps around the world.
I will put a link to this site in the Peace Collection's web site. I will also send notice of the site to H-Peace, if you have not yet done so.
I have a couple of changes for you. I haven't looked at everything closely yet, but here are changes for song #10 "Down At Greenham on a Spree". The changes are all spelling ones.
Fifth verse, third line, although the idea of sinning in the rain is rather amusing, it should read:
"Laughing, dancing, singing in the rain,"
Sixth and last verse, third line:
the word "cas" should be spelled either "cus" or "cuz" it is a slang/shortening of the word because.
Great work, Wendy
Wendy E. Chmielewski, PhD.
Swarthmore College Peace Collection
This is a great website. I've been looking to see what is out on the internet about Greenham. I lived there for 6 month in 1986. its great to see songs and other historical information on your site. I also lived for a year, and was involved for longer, at the Seneca Women's Peace Encampment in the US. Now I am involved with a newly formed Seneca Peace Camp Herstory Project. We have a blog at: http://peacecampherstory.blogspot.com/
If you are able to, can you please post the blog link on your site? Seneca was inspired by the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp and there were many Greenham women at Seneca and Seneca Women at Greenham. Thank you.
I have some info about a song from Seneca.
Song # 79 "Revolution Talk" words and music were written in 1985 at the Seneca Women's Encampment for a Future of Peace and Justice by The Average Dyke Band. The ADB was made up of various women who lived at the Seneca women's peace camp in the mid '80's.
Song # 6 Out of the Darkness
written by Frankie Armstrong for Greenham Common march.
We've just been searching online trying to find a harmony acappella version of the song "Tomorrow" (song as featured on your Danish Peace Academy site). No luck so far - Might you know of one anywhere? If so we'd be very grateful to hear about it - we want to sing it at a party for peace here in Leicester, UK.
We noticed at the bottom of your entry on "Tomorrow" that you had no info on author etc. We have a copy of the Workers Music Association book "Peace Songs" (ed. J.Jordan, 1989). This book says that "Tomorrow" was written by Peggy Seeger as part of her defence in court when she was charged with obstruction for protesting about the arrival of Cruise missiles. Hope this info is helpful.
Rowan & Willow Songsmith
Dear Mr. Terp,
This is in response to your inquiry (NWCTC 06-00590) regarding records of the [US] Department of State mentioning atomic weapon accidents. Your request has also been sent to our Modern Military Textual Reference branch, you can expect to hear directly from them.
I searched the State Department's Central Decimal File (the main filing system for State records) under the decimal heading 711.5611, the decimal covering American atomic weapons. For the time period in question, there was no mention in the documents about the accident at Greenham Common.
There is, however, considerable documentation on British concerns over potential nuclear accidents, including clippings from British newspapers. The portions of the files containing such information are about one hundred pages. The articles do not specifically mention Greenham Common, they focus on British reaction to an accident that had occurred in South Carolina.
Archivist, Civilian Records
Textual Archives Services Division
Sent: Friday, November 18, 2005 10:04 PM
Re: Inclusion in SOSIG of:
This is to inform you that your Web site has been included in SOSIG (Social Science Information Gateway):
A link, summary and details of the Web site will be available for viewing from SOSIG from 8am tomorrow morning (GMT) at the address below:
Please let me know your posting address so that I can send you out the permissions contract
Thank you so much for sending this, it is a marvelous contribution to the history of women's role in the peace movement. I will add a link to this site to our webpage. Please keep me on your mailing list.
Lucinda Marshall, founder
Feminist Peace Network
Hi, a friend just drew my attention to your website.
The Layabout Song (beginning 'Down' not 'Here') at Greenham on a spree' was written by me and if you would like the correct version -I don't mind seeing it in print, but I would like it to be reproduced correctly, - I can provide you with it - please contact me.
And I also wrote Which Side are you on.
Both songs could be sung by me as they are meant to be - most people get the notation wrong. I would send a recording to you.
My songs were written for 'us' at the camp but they were bound to be shared. That's ok.
Song 63, Your Children are not your children' was first put to music and sung by Sweet Honey in the Rock, an American acapello goup. Words are by Kahil Gibran. Song number 75, On this Mountain, is from a song by Holly Near.
Happy to help. Hope to hear from you soon.
Still alive and kickin'.
ps there has been quite a bit of 'cleaning up' and censorship - that will never do!!
When I was a teenager I would go to Greenham Common with my mother or with friends during the school holidays.
Many years ago I lost a precious record called Women Sing For Peace, with songs from the Greenham Songbook sung on it by the women who had written the songs, including Carry Greenham Home and Four Minutes to Midnight. I found your site, which is beautiful by the way and an amazing resource, and realised that the recordings you link to on the site are from the same album.
Today my mother remembered a song that they used to sing in the police cells and I remember a slightly different version from her (I later lived at Faslane Peace camp in Scotland).
I can't remember the title but my mother thinks it is
'Police cell song'?
The version we sang at Faslane peace camp goes like this:
You can't forbid nearly everything
You can't forbid me to sing
You can't forbid the sun to shine
And you can't shut my mouth when I speak.
My mother remembers it as this:
You can't forbid nearly everything
You can forbid me to sing
You can forbid me to act
but you can't close my mind when I think.
As I am not classicaly trained in music I can't give you the notes but we could perhaps sing it and send a copy?
I am sure Anne Lee and Helen John and other women must remember it?
Anyway, lots of sunshine
It was me who wrote the song 'Sarah's Song' when I was arrested the first time at Greenham and was in a Newbury police cell. I was being held on my own in one cell with others, including Sarah being held next door. We were shouting to each other and the police was getting ver fed up - not allowing us to go to the toilet, not feeding us for hours, constantly telling us to shut up. So I started making up this song and kept singing it with the women in the other cell quickly catching on and repeating it. I also memorialised the song on the wall of the police cell on that day with a pen I had managed to smuggle into the cell - however, the next time I was in that same cell it had been painted over.
Sometime later Jane L. and myself sang it at a peace rally in Copenhagen we has been invited to attend.
'We are the witches' was composed and written by myself, Beatrice and Sue Popper and I believe the input of one or two other women during a night outside the main gate when we were waiting for a convoy of cruise missiles to be driven out of the base. Sitting on an old sofa outside all night we wrote this song.
How fantastic to see this site with all the songs kept in this way!
Just came across your website asking for Greenham Songbooks etc. I lived there for about 6 months and did write down and number of Rebecca's songs. I also have a number of peace song books from the anti-nuclear movement in the USA. Can I send you copies for your project?
Director, Women's Studies Program
Illinois State University
I saw "Carry Greenham Home", the documentary on the women of Greenham Common, long ago and used part of it (VHS) in a documentary for peace groups before 1989!
I remember well that Peggy Seeger sang the song "Carry Greenham Home" in a breathtaking way - it is a different version to that you just published.
This is what I would like to inform you about. The best would be to publish the song in that version and the documentary as mpg.file.
I keep a VHS copy of the documentary "somewhere", but have no technical means to transform it into a mgp.file which shoul be done.
I addition, today I was informed about a new 2006 campaign against nukes at Faslane, Scotland.
Love, Christian Bartolf
Did Greenham make a difference?
We’re asking everyone to answer the question ‘did Greenham make a difference?’ - I know it is not a simple question and it means different things to different people … some answer with regard to their own personal experiences, some in terms of international policy (and everything in between) … it is all relevant and worthwhile. In any case, could you please try to answer in a short paragraph (or few) and email it back to me.
(Within the next week or two would be much appreciated, if at all possible.)
Do attach one picture if you like (i.e. of yourself at Greenham, or of some Greenham event that is related to your answer…).
In addition, if any children/grandchildren/friends/family who have not yet been in touch with me would also like to respond to this question, I’d be happy to hear their thoughts…
These testimonials will be used as part of the online Greenham project, and may also form part of an article in the paper (not yet confirmed).
Please feel free to email/call me on the number below with any questions/concerns.
I look forward to hearing from you!
119 Farringdon Road
London EC1R 3ER
Tel: 020 7131 7112
Stead, Jean: Greenham Common 25 years on.
The Guardian, 2006. 12 pp. and
Remembering common bonds
Audio: What did the women's protest against nuclear weapons at Greenham Common achieve?
Thanks for this - it's really wonderful! Your site looks great, well done. I was not able to access everything (i.e. couldn't hear recordings of songs, or see INF treaty), but what I did see was great. I'd very much like to see what you have on the INF treaty...
It is a long way to come especially, but if you're planning to be in London anytime between Sept 6 - Oct 20, please do come to our Greenham exhibition. Our project won't be online before Oct, but I'll be sure to keep you posted - sure we'll email before then.
Congratulations on all that you have done to memorialise Greenham Common. The last lot of pictures are a great addition to all the other resources you have collected.
May we add your site to our LINKS page on our website?
( www.femarch.freeserve.co.uk )
We should have asked you before this! It is simpler if researchers can go straight to your site. If you agree, what is the best URL to give for researchers to use to access your Greenham site?
This briefly to say how much I appreciate your work in rescuing some of the marvellous songs which were so integral to the Greenham Women’s protest, were original, often funny and made singers of us all. As you may know by now, for the past 5 years I have been writing the story of how the peace-camp began, and of our visit to the USSR at the height of the Cold War where we expressed solidarity with the independent peaceniks, “Moscow Group for Trust”. My book is now about to be published by the small Welsh press “Honno”, it is called “Walking to Greenham: How the peace-camp began and how the Cold war ended”. I am wondering if the organiser of the exhibition of the peace-camp at the offices of the Guardian newspaper in London, have any recordings to play of the Greenham songs. Do you have any of this material on cd? The organiser is called Gareth James, has he been In touch with you?
Regards and thank you for all your work and dedication these years, without people like you all this marvellous non-violent history of effective protest would leave no trace.
Dear Holger Terp
Thank you so much for including CAAB by sending us your interesting work about GC. Anni and I were both profoundly afffected by our experiences at GC as were hundreds of other women - having been arrested many many times during those years etc etc - the campaign has continued since then. CAAB works to bring public scrutiny and awareness to what the US Visiting Forces are doing here and round the world - a mammoth task indeed!
Very sadly Anni Rainbow's eldest son Matthew was killed in Iraq on 1 August - he was serving in the British Army. It was utterly pointless and a terrible waste as are all the other cilivians and soldiers who have been killed or injured during this terrible illegal war.
Lindis Percy and Anni Rainbow
CAMPAIGN FOR THE ACCOUNTABILITY OF AMERICAN BASES (CAAB)
Dear Holger Terp:
I was forwarded the information below regarding your documenting of Greenham common. I've been trying to recover information about the camp for several years and I hope we can assist each other.
My name is Daniel Kinch. I'm a New York based playwright. My plays are about issues of social justice and peace.. In 1999, I toured one of my plays through the Netherlands and Belgium in support of the Hague Appeal for Peace. There is some detail on my website http://users.rcn.com/danmk. Sadly, the American taste for messages of peace went away after 9/11. Most of the theatres I was working with are gone now, victims of rising real estate prices and an indifferent public.
For several years now, I've been attempting to compile a series of plays based on women peace activists. These are all based on the first-person accounts of women engaged in work against militarism and war. I've premiered two of the monologues here in NY. One was based on the testimony of Dr. Rosalie Bertell on the worldwide health effects of the fallout from nuclear testing and warfare. A second monologue was from one of the refugees from the US nuclear testing in the Marshall Islands.
As far as Greenham goes, I'm sure you're already aware of the work of Sasha Rosenneil (Disarming Patriarchy, Common Women, Uncommon Practices). I also found Lynne Jone's Keeping the Peace (a set of essays by women about anti-war activities) quite helpful. I did correspond with someone who was at Greenham for two or three years. I also found out that an old family friend was an activist at Greenham for a couple of years. But I was never able to get my hands on video or tape records of the period. There was a woman who was selling video and audio tape of the Greenham common period online, but I was never able to get in touch with her.
You also know that Petra Kelly visited Greenham Common on a number of occasions. I am working with a young woman doing her graduate thesis on the long-term effects of Kelly and the Greens, and I also wrote a play about Kelly in the early 1990's. This is not to say that Kelly's visit was important in and of itself; rather, it seems to me that it was necessary for Kelly and Die Grunen to acknowledge the pioneers of Greenham, who had paved the way for the European rejection of US nukes. That consensus in public opinion helped to raise early consciousness of the Green Party's 'anti-politics'.
Also, I don't think you can have the CAAB group at Menwith Hill absent the Greenham protests.
Let me know if I can be of assistance. In the meantime, I wish you success with your project, and peace in un-peaceful times.
Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp
by Sarah Meyer
It is the 25th anniversary of Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp. We lived outside the US base near Newbury, Berkshire, where US Cruise missiles were to be installed. Sometimes there were two or three dozen of us. Sometimes there many more women, especially on weekends and holidays. The first big demonstration, 'Embrace the Base,' brought thousands of women to Greenham. Then Greenham became international. All Greenham gates had women living nearby. We were supported by donations of money, food and blankets. The postmen bent under the bags of post we received. Writing return letters in the mud and rain in the winter by our fire was not easy.
Ref Petra Kelly,
Petra Kelly was at the END meeting in Berlin which a few of the Greenham women attended in 1983. She and a friend went to East Berlin, and were arrested for, as I remember, flying a peace flag. It was, I believe, Bruce Kent, then Chair of CND UK, who got her released.
Greenham women turned the END Berlin meeting upside down. I doubt if that is mentioned anywhere. Neither CND nor END could cope with us. We didn't like rows of chairs with men dominating microphones and talking forever, nor did we like all the speakers sitting in a line behind desks on the platform. So we discussed the situation, and then rebelled. Fun. What is most fun is seeing disapproval and/or disbelief in other peoples' eyes. I still cherish this. Keeps me alive, really ... Some VIP delegate wanted me to go to East Berlin with him for the night. We had a Consensus Meeting about this. The women decided I shouldn't go. The look on his face when the Greenham women told him of their joint decision was PRICEless. Makes me laugh remembering this ...
Another time I met Petra Kelly was when some Greenham women went to Sweden for a meeting. We shared big hugs. She put on a Greenham Common headband. I made and sold these headbands to help pay for the petrol for the Greenham Rainbow Bus.
Petra Kelly was a beautiful woman, and with very extraordinary energy.
I ran across your website while searching for articles on the Puget Sound Women's Peace Camp. Diana Siemens, whose photograph appears on a flyer on your site, was my dearest friend. Sadly, Diana passed away recently. We have set up a tribute website in her honor:
Losing Diana is not only a personal loss for me, losing her is a loss to all humankind who strive for peace.
Thanks for your great website
Just letting you know here that the song Who Are the Witches was written by an Australian man Phil Day. Our womens song group here in Sydney, Australia sing it. It is our theme song. We are part of the Older Womens Network (OWN) but we call our singing group the Witches of Wisdom.
I was looking for the tune to Take the Toys from the Boys as we want to sing that one too.
If you can help us with the music that would be great thanks,
All the best,
DEP ARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE AIR FORCE
HISTORICAL RESEARCH AGENCY
MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, ALABAMA
16 Aug 06
MEMORANDUM FOR RECORD
600 Chennault Circle
Maxwell AFB, AL 36112-6424
TO: HOLGER TERP
STRANDBYPARKEN 4, 1 tv
HVIDOVRE, DENMARK 2650
SUBJECT: Greenham Common 1958 (Your 12 June 2006 e-mail)
Dear Holger Terp,
As promised, I have further researched your request for information on the Women's Peace Camps at Greenham Common. I have enclosed an extract from one of our unit histories that has quite a bit of information.
Another of our documents, K-WG-501-HI, V. 7, dated July 1982 thru Mar 1983 (a volume in the same history timeframe, but a different volume) also contains information. That volume has too much for me to copy, so I will send you an order form for 16mm microfilm. If you are interested, the order form will explain how to order. I have also enclosed the abstract for the document to give you an ide a what else is there.
There are some photographs within the documents, and if you are interested in one of two, let me know. I can scan at high resolution and send to you. We would just like acknowledgement.
Also, I viewed your website. VERY impressive. What a great project!
I hope this helps with your research.
ANNE M. O'CONNOR, Archivist AFHRAJRSA
HISTORY OF THE 501st TACTICAL MISSILE WING (TMW)
RAF GREENHAM COMMON; UNITED KINGDOM
1 JULY 1982 THROUGH 31 MARCH 1983
VOLUME 1 -- NARRATIVE.
Undated. pp. 121-134
SmartSearch Dacument Print.
Page 1 af 1
Main: WING/0501/TACTICAL MISSILE RECTYPE: HISTORY CaU: K-WG-501-HI Y.7 IRIS Number: 1054042 BegDate: 07-01-1982 EndDate: 03-31-1983 PubDate: Author:
Title Extension: VOL VII OF VII TitIe Added Entries: AFTER ACTION REPORT ON CAMPAIGN FOR NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT DEMONSTRATION AT RAF GREEHAM COMMON, MAR 82 WINTEX-CIMEX 83 AFTER ACTION REPORT, 25 MAR 83 WOMEN'S PEACE CAMP (WPC) - RAF GREENHAM COMMON, C. FEB 82 CAMPAIGN FOR NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT CONSTITUTION, 1978 (DOCUMENT) PEACE GAME - A FILM ABOUT THE NUCLEAR DEBATE, OCT 82 (PAMPHLET) Class: UNCLASSIFIED LNFT: O AudioRec: NumPages: O MajCom:
Subject: MILITARY CONSTRUCTION PROGRAM Abstract:
DateRcvd: AddDate: 11-07-1984 IRISRef:
DNotes: SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS 190-325.
AccNotes: REF 01054036 OldAcc: AccsnrID: DateAccs: Reel: 0000037506 Frame:
241 FrameLast: O DateScnd: DateMflm: ScanrID: IndexID: C2 QCID:
https://hrairis2/scripts/rwisapi.dl1/@... SESSION_KEY =GBQRAGHZMKIB&C... 8/16/2006
Dear Ms Terp:
This is in response to your November 14, 2005, e-mail inquiry.
US Air Force accident reports dating back to 1939 are in the custody of the US Air Force Historical Research Agency (AFHRA). If you have not already done so, you should start your research by requesting a copy of the report relating to the crash of the C-47 aircraft at the airfield in Greenham Common. Following is a link to the AFHRA website:
Modern Military Records
National Archives at College Park
8601 Adelphi Rd
College Park, MD 20740-6001
US Air Force aircraft accident reports (including for "broken arrow" incidents) are in the custody of the Air Force Historical Research Agency, 600 Chennault Circle, Maxwell AFB AL 36112
This question was submitted via the Main Inquire Form by a user of the National Archives web site.
Dear Holger Terp,
I found one document in our published collections that might be of interest. I have put its link below:
It refers to a February 27, 1958 alleged accident; however, you will see the wording is very careful in the memorandum. We do not have any references to the Greenham Common broken arrow incident in our nonpublished collections.
I recommend that you contact the U.S. National Archives (NARA). NARA has the U.S. Air Force records up to 1976 / 1977. An inquiry can be emailed to an Archivist at:
Searching on the Internet, I found a detailed list of broken arrow incidents prepared by the U.S. Military in 1981. The link is
However, I could find no mention of the Greenham Common accident.
Thank you for your interest in the collections of the National Security Archive. I hope some of this information will be helpful.
Mary Curry, Public Service Coordinator and Research Associate
DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE
AIR FORCE HISTORICAL RESEARCH AGENCY
MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, ALABAMA
MEMORANDUM FOR RECORD
600 Chennault Circle Maxwell AFB, AL 36112-6424
SUBJECT: Broken Arrow at Greenham Common, 28 Feb 1958
I have researched your request for materials about a broken arrow at Greenham Common on 2 Feb 1958. We have no information on this. Your best option is to go to Department of Energy website: http://www.mbe.doe.gov/execsec/foia.htm. li you can find no information on the site there is a "request" option to mail for information on this subject.
My best to you on your research,
Department of Energy
Washington, DC 20585
Mr. Holger Terp
Strandbyparken 4, 1 tv.
Dear Mr. Terp:
This is in response to the request for information that you sent to the Department of Energy (DOE) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552. You asked for reports that relate to a broken arrow or other accident at Greenham Common in England in February 1958.
The request has not been controlled as a FOIA request and assigned to a program office to process because it does not address the requirements of a proper FOIA request as stated at Title 10, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Section 1004.4.
The DOE regulation that implements the FOIA provides, at 10 CFR 1004.4(e), that "a request shall inc1ude (1) an assurance to pay whatever fees will be assessed in accordance with 10 CFR 1004.9, (2) an assurance to pay those fees not exceeding some specified dollar amount, or (3) a request for a waiver or reduction of fees." The regulation further states that no request will be deemed to have been received until (1) some valid assurance of willingness to bear fees anticipated to be associated with the processing of the request, or (2) a specific request for a waiver or reduction of fees has been stated.
In your correspondence you did not provide an assurance to pay fees associated with the processing of the request or request a waiver of processing fees.
The FOIA provides that ”[d]ocuments shall be furnished without any charge or at a charge reduced below the fees established under c1ause (ii) if disclosure of the information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations or activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester.” See 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(A)(iii).
The DOE has implemented this statutory standard for fee waivers or reduced fees in its FOIA regulation at 10 CFR 1004.9(a)(8). If you request a waiver or reduction of fees, please address the criteria established in that section. The regulation sets forth the following factors that are considered by the agency in applying the criteria:
1. The subject of the request: Whether the subject of the requested records concerns "the operations or activities of the government;"
2. The informative value of the information to be disclosed: Whether the disclosure is "likely to contribute" to an understanding of government operations or activities;
3. The contribution to an understanding by the general public of the subject likely to result from disclosure taking into account your ability and intent to disseminate the information to the public in a form that can further understanding of the subject matter; and
4. The significance of the contribution to public understanding: Whether the disclosure is likely to contribute "significantly" to public understanding of government operations or activities.
Please provide a statement that you agree to pay fees that may be incurred to process the request, that stipulates an amount you are willing to pay, or that requests a specific waiver or reduction of fees and addresses the factors above. You should provide this information to Ms. Joan Ogbazghi of this office by January 4, 2006. If she does not hear from you or receive the requested information by that date, no further agency action will be taken on this request.
The above referenced number has been assigned to the request and you should refer to it in the response to this office.
Thank you for your interest in the DOE. If you have any questions about this correspondence, you may contact Ms. Ogbazghi for assistance at email@example.com. She also can be reached on (202) 586-3595.
FOIA/Privacy Act Group
Office of the Executive Secretariat
Dear Mr Terp
Thank you for contacting The National Archives of the United Kingdom
The following sources may be of interest:
DEFE 24/1204 US Air Force and US Navy presence in the UK: proposal to reactivate RAF Greenham Common as a second UK base for KC-135 tankers 1976 Jan 01 - 1978 Dec 31
DEFE 24/1287 United States Air Force (USAF) and United States Navy (USN) presence in the UK: selection of a second base for KC 135 tanker aircraft (Greenham Common or Fairford); Parliamentary statements and correspondence 1977 Jan 01 - 1978 Dec 31
There is other material related to Greenham Common airfield (e.g.: AIR 2, AIR 19, AIR 29) but this pre-dates the 1970s.
Remote Enquiries Duty Officer
The National Archives of the United Kingdom.
Dear Holger Terp,
I believe you may have the wrong accident, the Greenham Common accident that occurred in 1958 resulted in the deaths of 2 people who were crushed by a falling fuel tank dropped by a Schilling Air Base (Salinas, Kansas) bomber.
The information of these two men follow below
Airmen 1st Class Richard Francis Goguen
Staff Sargent Carter J. Pauley
These two men were not pilots but most likely mechanics and ground crew members.
You might be more interested in the 28 July 1956 incident at Lakenheath where a Lincoln bomber skidded off the runway into nuclear weapon storage igloos. The names of the crew were...
Capt. Russell R. Bowling
Lt. Carroll W. Kalberg
Lt. Michael J. Selmo
Tsgt. John Ulrich
If you need any more information I would be happy to help you.
Sorry to have taken so long to respond, computer has been acting funny.
The reports you sent me are fascinating but unfortunately I don't have anymore information on the incident. No veterans I've talked to speak of the incident and all thats in the newspapers is about the two airmen.
Your notes are put together well and if you are ever able to find out information from government sources about this incident I'd like to hear about it. The biography.ms/nuclear_accidents website has quite a few incidents I have not heard of (from government, private organization or other American websites).
It is very interesting to see that the fire had blazed for so long, I would think a nuclear-armed aircraft would be quickly extingished (there have been many, many B-47 accidents in the United States)
My advice would be to research about the B-47s there, I'm not sure if this burning B-47E would be a Smoky Hill (later Schilling AFB) 310th aircraft or a Lincoln one (98th or 307th).
A good idea is to research the tail numbers (aircraft identification) of the B-47s and try and track down their history (such as was this aircraft reported as being crashed? or was it retired, or unknown?). If you might locate this aircraft's tail number you may be able to find more information about its history. Perhaps requesting wing histories from the AFHRA could help as well.
It looks as if you have encountered a lot of buracracy in your search and hope you are able to overcome it. I wish you the best of luck in your search and sorry I couldn't of been more help.
c. US Nukes for Newbury
The NATO "Double-Track" Decision on Theatre Nuclear Forces
Documents Special Meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers Brussels, 12 December 1979
1. At a special meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers in Brussels on 12 December 1979.
2. Ministers recalled the May 1978 Summit where governments expressed the political resolve to meet the challenges to their security posed by the continuing momentum of the Warsaw Pact military build-up.
7. Accordingly Ministers have decided to modernise NATO's LRTNF by the deployment in Europe of US ground-launched systems comprising 108 Pershing II launchers, which would replace existing US Pershing I-A, and 464 Ground-Launched Cruise Missiles (GLCM), all with single warheads. All the nations currently participating in the integrated defence structure will participate in the programme: the missiles will be stationed in selected countries and certain support costs will be met through NATO's existing common funding arrangements.
The programme will not increase NATO's reliance upon nuclear weapons. In this connection, Ministers agreed that as an integral part of TNF modernisation, 1,000 US nuclear warheads will be withdrawn from Europe as soon as feasible. Further, Ministers decided that the 572 LRTNF warheads should be accommodated within that reduced level, which necessarily implies a numerical shift of emphasis away from warheads for delivery systems of other types and shorter ranges In addition they noted with satisfaction that the Nuclear Planning Group is undertaking an examination of the precise nature, scope and basis of the adjustments resulting from the LRTNF deployment and their possible implications for the balance of roles and systems in NATO's nuclear armoury as a whole. This examination will form the basis of a substantive report to NPG Ministers in the Autumn of 1980.
11. The Ministers have decided to pursue these two parallel and complementary approaches in order to avert an arms race in Europe caused by the Soviet TNF build-up, yet preserve the viability of NATO's strategy of deterrence and defence and thus maintain the security of its member States.
A modernisation decision, including a commitment to deployments, is necessary to meet NATO's deterrence and defence needs, to provide a credible response to unilateral Soviet TNF deployments, and to provide the foundation for the pursuit of serious negotiations on TNF.
Though it apparently was a common NATO decision the US control of the Cruise and Pershing II missiles in Europe was absolute.
[Source: Rentoul, John: US control of cruise to be made absolute.
New Statesman. Vol 106 1983. No. 2746 p. 4.]
The US General Dynamics/McDonnell Douglas BGM-109G Gryphon Ground Launched Cruise Missile replaced nothing.
The first part of the redevelopment of Greenham Common was to cost £50 million, roughly 40% of which came from NATO infrastructure funds.
On June 17th 1980, the British Government announced that Greenham Common and RAF Molesworth in Cambridgeshire would be the two GLCM bases in Britain. Greenham Common would also be the very first base in Europe to receive its first flight of 16 missiles in late 1983. Molesworth had also been a USAF base during the 1950s and in WW2. NATO aimed to have the first missiles operational at Greenham and Comiso in Sicily, Italy by December 1983.
Time Vol. 116. No. 3 p. 9. July 21, 1980:
The Newbury area (pop. 121,400) near Greenham Common is sure to become a focus of protest. Street meetings and leaflet mailings, even a series of "music against missiles" concerts are being planned. Says Mrs. Joan Ruddock, a Labor candidate in last year's election and the leader of the local opposition: "The protest is just starting; it is going to be very big."
But the government's decision to place the missiles in two Tory-dominated areas seems to be paying off, and town opposition is hardly intense at this point. "Nobody would say, 'Please may we have them,'" admits Reginald Stubberfield, the Conservative chairman of the Newbury District Council, "but we have our obligations to NATO." Newbury residents also appear to be more resigned than most Britons to the idea of nuclear hazard: Harwell, Britain's atomic research center, and Aldermaston, the atomic-weapons research center, are situated within 14 miles of the town. "We've got so many nasties anyway," a Newbury housewife told TIME Correspondent Eric Amfitheatrof, "that another is not going to make all that much difference." Added a pub owner, "If they are going to go bloody bang, it doesn't matter where they are."
[Illusration source: le cruise. Le bulletin de CO.DE.N.E. No. 2, 1983.]
[Specal report: Thinking the unthinkable. Newsweek, October 5, 1981 pp. 24-31.]
Greenham's boys with the black stuff
By Fran De'ath. Sanity, June 1983 p.5
I spent February and March ofthis year picketing the main works gate at Greenham Common. I soon discovered that one firm in particular was making a lot of money out of the building work. Tarmac Ltd had been awarded a twelve and a half million pound contract to build the Cruise silos.
A group of campaigners decided to launch a campaign against Tarmac. It was a way of involving people in their home towns and even sitting at home writing letters.
Since then the anti-Tarmac action has gathered momentum. There have been pickets at Tarmac offices in London and Wolverhampton; two pickets at sites in Wales during visits by the Chairman of the Board and a roadside demonstration at a Tarrnac site in Bristol organised by Women Oppose the Nuclear Threat...
On July 1, 1982, USAF's 501st Tactical Missile Wing was activated at RAF Greenham Common in Great Britain.
[Source: Grier, Peter: The Short, Happy Life of the Glick-Em. Air Force Magazine Online, July 2002 Vol. 85, No. 07.
15 Squadron Royal Air Force Regiment
15 Squadron RAF Regiment was formed on 1 June 1946.
In September 1982, the Squadron was formally declared operational as a light armour squadron and shortly after began re-training in the IS role for duty in Northern Ireland from January to May 1983.
After returning from Northern Ireland, the Squadron moved to RAF Hullavington in June 1983. In July 1983 the Squadron was deployed at short notice to RAF Greenham Common as part of the forces in support of Operation ROUST. This involved the physical security of RAF Greenham Common as it was threatened by anti-nuclear activists. This continued as a commitment until 1985.
[Source: http://www.raf.mod.uk/rafregiment/15_s... ]
The soldiers of RAF Greenham Common and RAF Welford published the magazine the Common Crier, 1982-.
Greenham had the longest military runway in Europe.
[Source: Newbury Weekley News, January 16, 1992.]
At the same time the US military bases and installations in the UK increased so in 1984 there were 135 of them in the UK.
[Source: Campbell, Duncan: Target Britain. New Statesman. Vol. 100, October 31, 1980 pp. 6-9.]
Campbell, Duncan: US military bases and facilities in Britain. New Statesman. Vol. 107, April 13, 1984 pp. 10-11.
The Cruise missiles at Greenham Common were deactivated in 1991.
PICNIC - IN AT THE COMMON
Peace News No. 2125. July 25, 1980
Cito reports: The actions against the Cruise Missiles continued on July 20 when 150 people walked the three and a half miles from Newbury to Greenham Common airbase, Berkshire, for a picnic outside the main gate. This was the first action at Greenham Common since the announcement [On June 17th 1980] of the plans to site 96 Cruise Missiles there, with several more actions planned.
The centrepiece of the event was the handing in, by the kids on the walk, of a letter to the men (we decided there probably weren't any women on active service there) of the base stating our opposition to Cruise missiles and our intention to take all nonviolent steps necessary to prevent their installation. This was signed by all most all of those present, with a large number of personal comments added.
Those at Greenham ranged from punks to pensioners and a good time was had by all. We recommend everyone to organise a picnic outside their nearest nuclear horror. Most of them have convenient large villages nearby and its an excellent opportunity to reach people. (We got publicity in places we wouldn't normally have dreamed of.)
A sponsored vigil will take place at Greenham Common from 8.14am August 6 to 5pm August 9 to commemorate the dropping of the atom bomb on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. Details from Tony Talbot, tel Oxford 724315.
On September 21  there will be a large demonstration outside the base. Contact: Acorn, The Emporium, Merchants Place, Reading for details of the picnic and Newbury Campaign Against the Missiles, 9 Connaught Road, Newbury, for the growing campaign at Greenham.
Hiroshima Day, 1980
[Peace News for nonviolent revolution 22 August 1980 3]
NO MORE BOMBS
Last year , in commemoration of the dropping of the Bomb on Hiroshima, a writer lamented on the back cover of Peace News that he would yet again be "one of a pitifully small group on a vigil in a main street". This year, thousands of people all over the country added their silence to the memory of the people who died and are still dying from the effects of the Bomb. The following reports convey the breadth of activity that took place activity that expressed itself as protest against the new generation of nuclear weapons as well as the memory of 35 years ago.
Meg reports: We held a 75 hour vigil outside the entrance to RAF Greenham Common, to commemorate the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and to protest against the proposed use of this base as home site for part of "our share" of Cruise Missiles. A camp was set up on a small triangle of MoD grass beside the main entrance to the base and the busy Newbury to Basingstoke road.
The vigil began at 8.13 am on Wednesday August 6 and continued until 11.02 on Saturday August 9. We formed a circle at thirteen minutes past the hour throughout the day and well into the night, and sang songs, read and kept silence, and the vigil ended with a two hour session of songs, readings and street theatre, followed by a two minute silence and presentation of a cherry tree to the base commander.
Attendance varied from over 200 in the final two hours to about 10 in the middle of Thursday morning. A cross-section of people came whose ages ranged from late 70s to a babe in arms, and we were joined by Danes, a Finn, Swiss, Italian and some North Americans. The tone was set by the presence of large numbers of local Quakers, several veterans of the peace movement and the Buddhist monks from Milton Keynes. One monk fasted for the whole time and spent from 6am to 6pm chanting and beating his drum-accompanied by one of US- a few yards from the guard house. We attracted support from passers-by, some of whom stopped their journey to join us, and hoots and thums-up signs particularly from longdistance lorry drivers. There was also a steady stream of derision from other drivers, but while I was there the positive support outweighed the negative.
We made the TV news, local radio, and newspapers, so as a publicity exercise the vigil can be seen as a success. For those of us who attended, the experience was very positive and highly charged-the atmosphere of the site changed-and gave us an opportunity to get to know each other better. Negative criticisms came entirely from the people who spent a short time at the vigil at the start and finish, and predictably from members of the lefttendencies who were alienated by the atmosphere. This feeling was shared by a group of young army officers who came along to disrupt us af ter the pubs closed. They shouted at us for half an hour and fled in terror when we formed a silent circle.
For me it made a useful contrast to overtly political demonstrations, without long speeches by big names, and it was good to attend an event for peace together with groups of people I don't normally meet, but who clearly have a great deal to offer.
Contact: Campaign Atom, tel Oxford 47429.
d. The long road to Greenham
The idea of the march was a little notice in Peace News about a women-led march from Copenhagen to Paris which I noticed whilst on a leaflet writing party to persuade our Council to go nuclear-free (they did). What a nice idea to have one here - everyone agreed, but no one wanted to "do" it because it would be too much work. Nor did I, but" the idea just refused to go away so in the end I gave in to persistent internal pestering and announced that I would walk from somewhere in Wales to somewhere, like Greenham Common, in England with anyone else that wanted to come.
About forty of us assembled in Cardiff on August 26th, and the first thing that struck us was our variety. The more we discovered of ourselves the more impressed we became - by the numbers of women, for instance, for whom coming on the march had been difficult, involving elaborate arrangements over child-care or jobs, or giving up a holiday. Simply to discover that this primlooking grandmother, this cheerful G.P., this nervous schoolgirl, this single-parent mother of five, took the threat to our future seriously enough to respond to a call to action coming not from any known organisation but from an unknown individual living in an obscure rural corner of these isles gave us courage. This faith is important, for the potential of "the movement" to rise to the rhetoric about The Greatest Challenge in the History of Mankind is no more than the potential of these miserable individuals, with dinner to cook and too much to do already, and a deepseated lack of faith in themselves and others ...
By the second half of our long walk in the heat wave, the atmosphere was like a kind of force-field within which obstacles served only to strengthen determination and policemen relaxed, became human and danced with us to the tune of "No More Hiroshimas" ... What I believe we experienced was something of that creative spirit, that power of mimesis, evoked by our distant ancestors when they drew pictures to overcome their fear of the huge powerful animals that surrounded and threatened them - the woolly marnmoth, the sabre-toothed tiger. They drew it and danced and in this way they came to believe it could be done - these powerful creatures could be killed.'
The Greenham Factor
In 1983-1984 Sally Belfrage was involved in the Greenham Common Women's Nuclear Disarmament movement, and helped edit its broadsheet "The Greenham Factor."
[Source: Guide to the Sally Belfrage Papers 1903-1994.
Tamiment Library/Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives. New York.
Belfrage, Sally: Down Among The 'Wimmen'. The Nation, June 30, 1984 pp. 793-796.
Joan Ruddock MP: I was the chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament - the major anti-nuclear weapons campaign in the UK. We gave support to the original marchers from Wales (women and men), who subsequently set up the Peace Campaign after having reached Greenham Common. It soon became an all female camp and CND continued to give support.
My house was near the Greenham base (which is why I became the head of the movement). Consequently I didn't live at the camp but was a very frequent visitor and supporter.
Come to Greenham Common. END Newsletter. No. 3, 1981 p.1.
John, Helen: Greenham Common. Disarmament Campaigns. No. 8, February 1982 p. 9.
Women's Banners / Published and edited by Thaila Campbell.
Coates, Ken: Letter: Kalevi Sorsa
The Guardian, Monday March 15, 2004
Kalevi Sorsa (Obituary March 5) played an important part in the launching of the movement for European Nuclear Disarmament.
Campbell, Duncan: The road to Greenham Common.
New Statesman. Vol. 105. No. 2709, 18 February 1983 p. III.
e. We want Life on Earth!
Cruise Missiles: Keep Out of Britain
Women of the whole world, No. 4, 1982 pp. 14-15.
[Women of the whole world were the journal of the Women's International Democratic Federation.]
“Women have a very different comment to make about war and the killing of children. Our heritage is to bring life into the world - no longer will we stay at home and allow men to go out and fight in wars - today we are coming out to fight against war."
(from a press release of the Women's Peace Camp Greenham Common (Great Britain)”
At the end of August last year , forty women plus children and men marched from their home town Cardiff in South Wales, where armaments are manufactured, to Greenham Common USA Air Force Base, just west of London, where the British government intends to station 96 of the 160 Cruise missiles which NATO proposes to deploy in Britain. They marched "in an attempt to bring some attention to how they felt about the nuclear war issue and the unacceptable escalation Cruise missiles in Europe represents". They were virtually ignored by the media. In order to get publicity for their views, on arrival at Greenham Common, some of the women chained themselves to the fence around the military base for 24 hours (just as the suffragettes had done outside the Houses of Parliament at the beginning of the century in the fight for votes for women) ... and, women have been there ever since. They set up what has become known as the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp at the main gate of the base. They have now been living there 11 months in tents and caravans through the heavy snows and rain storms of the harsh winter and the summer heat wave. And they intend to stay until December 1983-the NATO deadline for deploying the Cruise missiles.
About a dozen women and some children are always living in the peace camp-some have been there the whole time; others for a few months, weeks or days. They are ordinary women-factory workers, students, housewives, professionals and unemployed women-who have sacrificed their normal life to protect not only the lives of their families and friends, but the lives of all humanity.
The peace camp has the official support of the entire peace movement in Britain. Individuals and whole bus loads from local peace groups come to show their solidarity, bringing food and financial support. For instance, one day recently, fifty women from Dorset Women for Peace came dressed up as waitresses, carrying models of Cruise missiles and holding placards asking "Who ordered these?". They gave out home-baked "peace cakes" to the workers at the base, saying "Don't feel guilty; just don't work here!"
As well as having a very visible presence at the main entrance of the military base, the women peace campers are taking many initiatives to spread the word of peace and life and to intensify the fight against Cruise missiles. They talk with the British building workers who are constructing the silos for the new missiles (two workers left their jobs when they discovered what it is that they are building-quite a sacrifice in a time of over 3 million unemployed); they explain their case to the US soldiers and their children with posters and conversations; they speak at nuclear disarmament meetings up and down the country, and Helen John, one of the original founders af the camp who is still there, made a fighting speech at the quarter million strong national demonstration for nuclear disarmament held in London in June.
They organized a very successful Festival of Life on 21 March to mark the spring equinox and mothers day the traditional festivals welcoming spring and life. About 10,000 people came to the base and surrounded it, listening to music, dancing, singing and watching theatre. Starting that evening, 250 women staged a symbolic occupation of the base by sitting across all the entrances to the base, stopping traffic in and out for 24 hours. The next morning, police removed a section of the fencing at the back of the base to follow soldiers and workers on the silos through. Women immediately sat in front of this hole as well. 34 women were arrested and fin[e]d, and for the rest of the day women were dragged away by police to allow vehicles through, only to return at once.
Two days later, the local District Council announced that they were seeking action in the High Court to evict the peace campers. Despite nation-wide protests, they won their case, and at the end of May the police arrived with bulldozers. They removed the caravans and completely demolished a large communal tent, which the protesters had used as a meeting area. They arrested five women who lay in front of the bulldozers in a last valliant effort to prevent the destruction of a nationally supported protest for peace. They were sent to prison for one week and thousands of women rallied in protest at the prison gates. But these determined women were not to be defeated. They immediately set up camp again-two yards down the road on land over which the District Council has no jurisdiction. And they are still there!
I had already met several women peace campers from Greenham Common at various European women's peace conferences and meetings during the past months, and was delighted to be able, at last, to visit the camp in July. I spoke with Babs [Schmidt] who is one of the women living in the camp -and heard about their plans.
On Hiroshima and Nagasaki Days they are organizing a public event at the war memorial in the nearby town, drawing attention to the horrific effects of nuclear holocaust. They plan also to stage an action at the gates of the base and to attempt to enter it in a peaceful way and talk with the soldiers.
They are in the process of investigating the history of the base. They have discovered that is built on common land, which should, by custom, be open to free use by all citizens. They are looking into whether it is in fact lawful for the base to have been built there and if not intend to push through the courts for its removal!
Amongst their many original ideas for action is the plan to surround the whole base, whim has a perimeter of ten miles, with women holding hands a human chain. They will need 10,000 women and are spreading the idea everywhere in order to gain the support they need and will surely get.
Babs told me how important the support from all over the country and abroad is. They have received letters and telegrams from many different countries and organizations, including the WIDF. (Address: Women's Peace Camp, Outside main gate, USAAF. Greenham Common, Berkshire, Great Britain).
Just as I was saying goodbye a representative of the Ministry of Transport (who owns the land the camp is now on) brought a 28 day notice of eviction. But the women at Greenham Common will battle on and, with all their initiative, will find a way of maintaining a permanent presence at the gates of this crucial base in their heroic battle to stop the stationing of Cruise missiles in Britain.
The Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp has become on the one hand, a focal point for the peace movement, and on the other hand, a great inspiration to others for action. There are now twelve 'Peace camps throughout Britain. Each has its own specific character, but all are firm in their stand against Cruise missiles and for nuclear disarmament.
Another nationwide campaign is the one for Nuclear Free zones. Already over 140 local councils-including those of big cities such as London, Manchester and Liverpool, and whole regions in Scotland, and Wales in its entirety-have declared themselves Nuclear Free zones, convinced that "their citizens should not suffer the horrors of nuclear war", They have passed resolutions in whim they call upon the British Government "to refrain from the manufacture or positioning of any nuclear Weapons of any kind within the area of our city (region, etc.)." They are 'taking action by supporting disarmament and peace movements, by opening free discussions in smools and community groups, by pressing to stop the transportation of nuclear warheads and waste without their approval in their areas, by seeking to extend their powers to achieve a nuclear free Britain for future generations. The united action of these Nuclear Free lone councils has forced the government to postpone indefinitely a nationwide civil defense exercise (part of a NATO exercise) designed to test and encourage local civilian involvement in dealing with the aftermath of a nuclear war. This is a great victory, but the fight goes on.
Nuclear disarmament and peace groups have sprung up everywhere throughout Britain in the last two years. In the largest city to the smallest village, thousands of people of all age and backgrounds-many of whom have never before been involved in political activity-are on the streets with leaflets, loudspeakers, stalls and cars in protest at the stationing of Cruise missiles on British soil and for nuclear disarmament and peace. The Greater London Council, which covers over 12 million people, proposes to designate 1983 as London Peace Year. The half a million people who participated in massive national demonstrations for nuclear disarmament in October 1981 and June 1982 have made their views very clear to the government. They, and the many others locally, are determined to realize the movement's slogan:
"Together we can stop the bomb '"
f. The Sarah Tisdall case
In 1984, The Guardian was sent photocopies of two classified documents about the deployment of US cruise missiles in Britain. When the Government demanded them back in order to establish the identity of the mole, the paper eventually produced them. Sarah Tisdall, the young clerk who had sent them, was then prosecuted and subsequently jailed.
The Nation, 08/18/1984 - Beat the Devil by Cockbum, Alexander
In the fall of 1983, amid tremendous public uproar, Britain's Conservative government was secretly preparing to accept delivery of the first batch of 160 cruise missiles from the United States. That October 20, Minister of Defense, Michael Heseltine wrote two memoranda to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, copies of which were distributed to senior ministers, including the Foreign Secretary, Geoffrey Howe. The first memo discussed tactics of political and media damage-control to be employed when the missiles arrived, and the second concerned' security arrangements at Greenham Common, one of the U.S. Air Force bases to which the cruise missiles were committed.
Selections from Full Text:
...The following da[y] Sarah Tisdall, a 23-year-old civil service clerk working in the office of Sir Geoffrey Howe, read the memos...
...This memo dealt with the possibility that demonstrators at Greenham Common might be shot by Royal Air Force personnel, backed by armed U.S...
[McQueen, Alastair: Beneath these 'molehills' the deadly missiles wait. Daily Mirror. December 12, 1983.]
Beside the storage pens is a high-level observation tower manned round the clock by armed paratroopers. They are understood to have orders to shoot any unauthorised person approaching the silos... Most are veterans of last year's fighting in the Falklands.
The memos were written long before the NATO-Soviet negotiations were concluded:
1981 -- November 30 OPENING OF INF NEGOTIATIONS Formal negotiations on INF begin in Geneva. The United States seeks elimination ("global zero") of U.S. and Soviet longer-range intermediate nuclear force (LRINF) missiles and collateral constraints on shorter-range intermediate nuclear force (SRINF) missiles.
1983 -- November 22-23 U.S. INF DEPLOYMENT The West German Parliament approves Pershing II deployments on November 22. The first U.S. INF missiles arrive in Europe the next day, and the Soviet delegation walks out of the INF negotiations in Geneva. The United States offers to resume the talks whenever the Soviets are willing to return, but the talks remain suspended until March 12, 1985.
Dwek, Erika: Something in common: Women Oppose the Nuclear Threat. END Journal, No. 3, 1980 p. 18.
Campbell, Duncan: Convoy caught in city. New Statesman, vol. 102. No. 2636, September 25, 1981, p. 3.
Campbell, Duncan: Dangers of the nuclear convoys. New Statesman, vol. 101. No. 2612, April 10, 1981, pp. 6-8.
Hassan, Amanda: A Black Woman in the Peace Movement.
Spare Rib Magazine, 1984, No. 142 pp. 6-8
National Library of Wales: Pacifism in Wales.
Campbell, Thalia: 100 Years of women's banners. - Bristol : Women for Life on Earth ; Art and Publicity ; Arts for Labour Wales [1986?] - 27 pp.
In February 1982, the camp became women-only space.
Cook, Judith: Greenham's uncommon women.
New Statesman. Vol. 105. No. 2704, 14 January 1983 p. 21.
Jones, Lynne: In the eye of the storm.
New Statesman. Vol. 106. No. 2752/53, 16/23 December 1983 pp. 8-9.
Keeping the Peace / Lynne Jones (editor).
- London : The Women's Press, 1983. - 162 pp.
Spare Rib: Greenham : Inside and out.
Spare Rib Magazine, 1984, No. 142 pp. 18-21.
Wallsgrove, Ruth: Press Coverage.
Spare Rib Magazine, 1984, No. 142 p. 21.
Ratovisky, David: Mænd og Greenham Common / Men and Greenham Common. Ikkevold, No. 2, 1984: pp. 14-15.
James, Lucy: Defence and British Politics in the 1980s: The Greenham Alternative.
g. The camps of Greenham
The 'camp' itself consisted of nine smaller camps: the first was Yellow Gate, established the month after Women for Peace on Earth reached the airbase; others established in 1983 were Green Gate, the nearest to the silos, and the only entirely exclusive women-only camp at all times, the others accepting male visitors during the day; Turquoise Gate; Blue Gate with its new age focus; Pedestrian Gate; Indigo Gate; Violet Gate identified as being religiously focussed; Red Gate known as the artists gate; and Orange Gate. A central core of women lived either full-time or for stretches of time at any one of the gate camps with others staying for various lengths of time. From the beginning, links were formed with local feminist and anti-nuclear groups across the country while early support was received from the Women's Peace Alliance in order to facilitate these links and give publicity through its newsletter.
Anne Lee: "I stayed at Indigo Gate, the main gate on the north side of the base. The USAF c. 1986 moved itseveral hundred metres further west. We then called it Woad Gate (woad was an ancient blue dye with which ancient Britons painted their bodies when confronting the Roman adversary). The campsite was on the road verge.
At one stage there were 9 camps: 7 at the Gates, identified by the women as the colours of the rainbow. Between Green and Blue Gates, there was Emerald camp - opposite the Cruise Missile Silos and between Red and Orange was Red Gap, where an internal road terminated at the fence, but there was no gate - it would, however, have been possible for the USAF to have brought out the missile convoy through Red Gap."
A Letter from Greenham Common
Carol (Vegan Views 30, Autumn 1983)
Here at the 'Blue Gate' of Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp eight of us have decided to become vegan. We would like to ask for recipes and ideas from other VV readers, bearing in mind that we cook over a wood fire. I particularly would like to know about soya 'cheese', as I remember being given some at a festival once. Yours in peace.
The women's peace camp at Greenham Common was copied and exported around the world.
h. Peace Camps: They're everywhere, they're everywhere
The Mobilizer, 1984 No. 1 p. 11.
Published by the US National Mobilization for Survival.
When a few dozen British women marched 140 miles from South Wales to Greenham Common in 1981, they didn't plan to start an international trend in the peace movement. They intended to have a debate with military personnel at the proposed U.S. cruise missile base. The debate never did occur, but the women set up the first peace camp at a military site, sparking the establishment of similar camps throughout the world.
As a semi-permanent presence at a military facility, a peace camp acts as a center for direct action organizing, workshops, discussions, and other activities focused on challenging militarism in general, and a local military installation in particular. This summer peace camps are functioning at nuclear installations in several regions of the U. S. Five of the most active are:
Women's Encampment for a Future of Peace and Justice (upstate New York, July 14 through Sept. 2)- Women have established a continuing peace camp outside the Seneca Army Depot in Romulus, N. Y. Seneca is a storage facility for neutron bombs and probably Pershing II missiles, and a transhipment point for nuclear weapons going to Europe. Last year Seneca was the site of the first U.S. peace camp and became a national focal point for opposition to the deployment of cruise and Pershing II missiles in Europe. Contact: Women's Encampment for a Future of Peace and Justice, 5440 Route 96, Romulus, N.Y. 14541 (697) 869-5825.
Women's Peace Presence To Stop Project Elf (Wisconsin, May 28 through the summer)- Women from around the Midwest have set up a peace presence outside the Navy's Project Elf facility in northern Wisconsin. Project Elf is a sophisticated radio transmitter designed to summon Trident submarines to the surface for a coordinated first-strike attack. It is the "trigger" to launch such an attack. Until recently this aspect of the Pentagon's first-strike policy has gone unnoticed outside Wisconsin and Michigan. The peace presence aims to highlight this dangerous system, and to challenge its continuation. Contact: The Women's Peace Presence, Hazel Kellar, Rt. 6, Box 6684, Hayward, WI 54843 (715) 634-3117..
Savannah River Peace Encampment (South Carolina)- A peace camp of women and men opened July 1 outside the Savannah River bomb factory in Aiken, S.C. The Savannah River plant produces 98% of the plutonium used in the manufacture of nuclear warheads. Citing the success of previous social movements in abolishing slavery in South Carolina, camp organizers are determined to challenge the state's role in building nuclear weapons. An all women's camp has also been established on the same site. Contact: Savannah River Peace Encampment, PO Box 1636, Aiken, S.C. 29802 (404) 3531194. For the women's camp: (404) 5240304.
Puget Sound Women's Peace Camp (Washington)- A peace camp has reopened outside the Boeing cruise missile plant in Kent, Washington. Based upon the principles of nonviolence and feminism, this camp was one of several established last year in opposition to the cruise and Pershing II Euromissiles. The organizers stress their links with anti Euromissile peace camps in Seneca and Greenham Common; Contact: Puget Sound Women's Peace Camp, 7604 South 212th St., Kent, WA 98032 (206) 872-3482. For men 's support group contact: (206) 323-3007.
Silence One Silo Peace Camp (Montana)- Men and women have established a peace camp on farmland outside an ICBM missile silo in East Conrad, MT. The peace camp is a part of a campaign to shut down one Minuteman missile silo in Montana (hence the name Silence One Silo). It serves as a base to house and train volunteers, acts as a center of information and action, and also provides continued access to the missile site. The camp hopes to become a model of action for people near other ICBM fields. In the event that the Air Force abandons the silo, the organizers plan to dedicate the camp as a peace park. Contact: Silence One Silo, Box 9203, Missoula, MT 59807 (406) 549-9449.
Peace Camps. Disarmament Campaign No. 13. July/August 1982 p. 13
The Women's Encampment for a Future of Peace and Justice is now Women's PeaceLand.
The Danish Peace Academy: Encyclopedia on Peace and Security: Peace Camps.
[The Women's Library: The Greenham Common Collection
j. Deploying the missiles
END Journal Issue 2, 1983
Britain will receive 160 ground-launched cruise missiles (GLCM). 96 will be deployed at Greenham Common in Berkshire and 64 at Molesworth in Cambridgeshire. Greenham Common is scheduled to be the first site in Europe to receive the missiles. Initial Operational Capability (IOC) for Greenham Common is December 1983. But from past experience this suggests that a portion of the missiles will be deployed around September. The missile launchers, known as TELs, will arrive even sooner. Indeed END Journal has received evidence that the United States have asked the British government if they can begin testing the mobile TELs and the launch control centres (LCCs) on British roads as early as April.
The US Department of Defense is making strenuous efforts to maintain the IOC at Greenham Common in December and has appointed a 'Tiger Team' to iron out difficulties. Construction of the super-hardened concrete silos is well advanced as could be observed during the television coverage on New Year's Day protests at Greenham. The trucks for the TELs are made in West Germany and, reportedly, the West German government has been pressed by the US Government to ensure delivery in late spring.
The main reason for the haste appears to be political. The US is anxious that the Greenham Common facility should be as advanced as possible before a general election so as to make cancellation by a future British Government more difficult.
However any early delivery of the missiles is bound to have the most serious consequences on the US/Soviet Union talks in Geneva as it is impossible for the Soviet Union to accurately verify the presence of a nuclear armed cruise. But they can detect the presence of launch vehicles and as such it has been acknowledged by the American negotiator, Paul Nitze, that the Soviet Union is likely to pull out of the talks as soon as that part of the cruise missile system is deployed.
The Molesworth base is, so far, completely open; it is currently used for RAF disposal. Only Ministry of Defence signs deter the curious visitor. The only evidence of construction is what looks like the extension and renewal of an old disused runway.
The Women's Peace Camp at Greenham Common has been widely reported in the press. The demonstration on December 12, the invasion of the base on New Year's Day and various other forms of direct action have dramatically drawn attention to the cruise issue.
There is also a People's Peace Camp at Molesworth, with about 50 to 100 people, and much more space and facilities than Greenham. The camp includes several caravans, a windmill and a hut and campers were prosecuted for making a vegetable garden inside the base area.
The United Kingdom is the only one of the five prospective host countries where sittings for the deployment of the new systems have been carried out and two main operating bases (MOB) have been selected there. Under the NATO proposal, 40 cruise launchers-l60 missiles-will be deployed in the United Kingdom...
The decision to accept cruise missiles and the more recent announcement of the purchase of the Trident missile to replace the Polaris deterrent force has sparked a new wave of antinuclear feeling in the United Kingdom. Opposition to the possession of nuclear arms and the location of American nuclear bases on British soils reported to be running higher than in the days of the "campaign for nuclear disarmament (CND)" in the 1950's. The movement has produced a spate of literature and articles arguing for [sic] and against the Government's current position. Much of the argument has been evoked by the publication of a Government handbook on Civil Defense, "Protect and Survive," which provoked a critical review of Government policy by Oxford historian E. P. Thompson called "Protest and Survive."
[The Modernization of NATO's Long-Range Theater Nuclear Forces : Report Prepared for the Subcommittee on Europe and the Middle East of the Committee on Foreign Affairs U.S. House of Representatives by the Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division, Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, December 31, 1980. U.S. GPO, Washington, 1981 p. 60.]
Campbell, Duncan: Cruise missile base nears completion.
New Statesman. Vol. 106. No. 2745, 28 October 1983 p. 6.
Operational Selection Policy OSP 11 : Nuclear Weapons Policy 1967-1998.
Records Management Department, The National Archives.
Around the time of the Cruise Missile protests two books were published ‘War Plan UK- The Secret Truth About Britain’s Civil Defence’ by Duncan Campbell and ‘Beneath The City Streets’ by Peter Laurie. Between them they documented the plans to defend the country in case we should ever be attacked by atomic weapons.
When the MOD produced a propaganda pamphlet, at public expense of £ 8000, for the residents of Greenham Common and Molesworth, the prospective cruise missile bases, it assured them that the bases were not, because of the missiles' mobility, 'likely to be a priority target'. That was in July 1980; in September 1980, the two bases featured on the Square Leg bomb plot as high-priority targets indeed. Greenham Common was one of the very earliest Square Leg targets. It would not have been dishonest for the MOD to say that the bases were almost certainly priority targets anyway, and the addition of the cruise missiles represented only a marginal increase in the mortal risk already faced in war by anyone living near the bases.
[Campbell, Duncan: War Plan UK. Paladin, 1983 p. 362.]
by Andrew Puddephatt.
CHARTIST, April/June 1990.
There is now an unprecedented level of individual surveillance, harassment and invasion of privacy by the state. The Observer in October 1988 claimed that, based on interviews with British Telecom engineers, there had been a 50 per cent increase in the number of engineers engaged in tapping telephones and that 30,000 taps a year were currently being placed on the lines of British citizens. The storage of information on people by the police has increased massively; it is not just people who are criminals or suspected of crime who are stored on the Police National Computer (PNC). Anyone o interest can find that personal details are logged by a local `collator' and store either on a local data-base or the PNC.
Ministers have the power to define who is and who isn't subversive and who does or does not warrant surveillance by the security services. Michael Heseltine used MI5 to collect information on CND and the Greenham Common protesters in order to fight a political campaign in the media against the peace movements.
Copyright © Statewatch
Campbell, Duncan: Tories wage secret war on peace campaigmers.
New Statesman. Vol. 105. No. 2706, 28 January 1983 p. 8.
In January 1983 Newbury District Council revoked the common land bye-laws for Greenham Common, becoming the private landlord for the site and instituting court proceedings to reclaim eviction costs, actions which were ruled as illegal by the House of Lords in 1990.
In March 1984, Caroline Blackwood (1931-1996), visited the camp for the first time.
In her book of reportage, On the Perimeter, she depicts the lives, fears and prejudices of all those involved; she talks to the women themselves, to bystanders, to shopkeepers, and members of RAGE (Ratepayers Against Greenham Encampments). She witnesses the evictions, sexual abuse of the women by the paratroopers, the trials in Newbury of women who have entered the base and the sudden arrival of the hunt at Main Gate...
[The New York Review of Books: Caroline Blackwood: Bibliography of books and articles by Caroline Blackwood, from The New York Review of Books.
Hipperson, Sarah: Letter: Lord Donaldson of Lymington
The Guardian, Wednesday September 7, 2005
The Greenham Common protest might not have lasted beyond 1985 had it not been for Lord Donaldson (obituary, September 3). In the appeal court, he overturned a ruling that had removed the names of 13 women from the Newbury electoral register, stating: "As to the need for a qualifying address, there can be no doubt that the Greenham ladies have it. Their mail is regularly delivered ... [their occupation] seems to have a marked degree of continuity." He listened with patience and courtesy to each of us.
Evictions at Greenham Common continued to 1995.
Greenfield, Myrna: Peace camp inspiration. END Journal, No. 6, 1983 pp. 6-7.
Up to 50,000 women were involved in protests to try to stop the movement of missiles.
Michael Fleet: One last heave will topple the Greenham fence.
Electronic Telegraph, Thursday 11 September 1997
At the end of 1984, 2013 women from Greenham Comon had been arrested.
[Source: Peace Protest Roll Call (9). New Statesman, Vol. 108. No. 2802 1984 p. 6.]
[Hansard] 147 Oral Answers 17 JANUARY 1984
Mr. Strang: Is the Secretary of State aware that I delivered to his office this morning a large chunk of concrete which the Greenham common women believe was thrown over the perimeter fence on to one of their tents in the middle of the night just before Christmas by a British soldier? Has he noticed the recent reports in the press of the harassment of the Greenham common women by British soldiers? Will he take this opportunity to make it clear that he is opposed to any such harassment and that if any Member of Parliament provides him with precise details of any such incident it will be investigated?
Mr. Heseltine: I think that I can help the hon. Gentleman. I am against members of the armed forces throwing concrete at people.
The protests and arrests continued...
WOMEN MAKE LINKS Set of 8 postcards NO.8
Heathrow Airport, December 1984. Greenham women demonstrate against nuclear and racial exploitation of the Soufh Pacific. Action to coincide with Australian Women's Peace Camp at U.S. Base, Cockburn Sound.
Photo Pam Isherwood.
Published by Sheffield Women Against Pit Closures and Hackney Greenham Women
WOMEN MAKE LINKS, 77 Bayston Rd, London N16.
Printed by Trojan, 10a Bradbury St, London N16
Distributed by Housmans, 5 Caledonian Rd, London N1.