Anti-war activist Kait McIntyre appeared in Cook County Judicial Circuit court on the morning of Aug. 1. McIntyre was one of five activists arrested in a civil disobedience protest action July 16 to oppose Boeing Company providing weapons to Israel for the siege on Gaza. She proudly pled guilty to trespassing at Boeing headquarters. «Hospitals, homes for the disabled and playgrounds are being bombed and more and more children die. As a citizen of Chicago, which has one of the largest Palestinian communities in the U.S., there comes a time where you cannot ignore your conscience and you know more drastic actions have to be taken.»
As part of the Antiwar Committee-Chicago (AWC), McIntyre is a leader of a two-year campaign against Boeing for their role as the second largest arms manufacturer in the U.S.. She even ran for Boeing’s board of stock holders earlier this year as a way to bring the message to Boeing that we need to end wars, not build a new generation of deadly weapons.
She is now required to pay a fine and is prohibited from contacting the company or setting foot on their premises. With this sentence, she is being threatened with disqualification as a candidate for the board this year. For her, the connection is clear: «Boeing is only interested in profit; they would rather silence people than stop the killings in Gaza.»
Protests around the country against Boeing have grown ever since Israel’s assault on Gaza began a month ago. Recently, the AWC held a die-in at City Hall to demand Boeing be dropped from sponsoring the Air and Water Show, Aug. 16 and 17.
Rather than being dismayed by the verdict, McIntyre took this as a positive sign that Boeing is now paying attention. «It is up to us not only to sustain this pressure, but also to increase it.” She urged people who oppose Israel’s attack on Gaza to join protests against Boeing at the Air and Water Show.
The four other activists involved in the civil disobedience action have their trial date on Aug. 12 at 2:30 p.m. at 2452 W. Belmont Avenue in Chicago. They are calling on supporters to come with them to court.