by Joe Scarry on Scarry Thoughts
Yesterday I marched with other members of local Lutheran congregations in a march to protest the Israeli invasion of Gaza. Estimates put the number of marchers at between 5,000 and 10,000. (Watch this Youtube video “Protest in downtown Chicago on 7/20/14” and judge for yourself.)
As the march neared its objective — the office building at Madison and Canal where the Israeli consulate is located — the nearby Boeing building came into view. For the first time, I wondered at its proximity.
Boeing, headquartered in Chicago, is one of the top military contractors in the world; and it’s one that hides behind the veneer of providing civilian airliners, for “nice” travel. The antiwar community in Chicago has long sought to shine a light on Boeing’s grisly war business and has called for it to cease those activities. (See “Activists Challenge Boeing to Disinvest from Drone Research”.) Getting the public to pay attention isn’t easy in our see-no-evil, hear-no-evil, above-it-all society.
Now that the Israeli government’s killings in Gaza are front-page news — particularly the way military aircraft is being used to mow down innocent men, women, and children — Boeing’s involvement is in everyone’s face.
|“An Israeli Apache helicopter fires a missile towards the Gaza Strip
on Saturday as Israeli forces pressed ahead with a ground offensive.”
(Source: Baz Ratner/Reuters/Landov, retrieved from 89.3 KPCC website.)
You can read the description of the “Boeing AH-64 Apache (Hebrew nickname: ‘Peten’ (‘Adder’), ‘Saraph’)” on the Israeli Air Force website.
|“An F-15I over the IAF’s Hatzerim air base.”
(Photo credit: Ofer Zidon/Flash90. Retrieved from End Time Bible Prophecy website.)
You can read the description of the “Boeing F-15I (Hebrew nickname: ‘Ra’am’ (‘Thunder’))” on the Israeli Air Force website.
It seems that Boeing has an Israel problem. And considering the close relationship between Chicago and Boeing, that means Chicago has a problem, too.
Most recently, several groups in Chicago took action in light of Boeing’s leading role in the Gaza killings, with a protest where Boeing lives. (See “Police Arrest 5 Anti-Israel Protesters At Boeing HQ”)
What will happen in just a few weeks, when Boeing sponsors a full-volume enactment of fighter jets and other military aircraft roaring over the Chicago lakefront in front of a half million spectators? Isn’t the sight and sound of jet fighters coming in low over people on a narrow strip of land next tot he water a little too close for comfort? Isn’t the 2014 Chicago Air and Water Show likely to be a public relations disaster for Boeing?
|“Die-in” at 2012 Chicago Air and Water Show.|
Numerous peace and justice groups long ago committed to have a presence at the Air and Water Show to protest U.S. militarism, drone killings, abuses of the “war on terror,” and recruitment of youth for war. (See, for instance, August 16-17: Protest U.S. Kidnapping, Torture, and Drone Assassinations at the 2014 Chicago Air and Water Show Protest )
It’s beginning to look like Boeing’s role in the Gaza killings may be the big story at the 2014 Chicago Air and Water Show.