Protest weapons of mass destruction
50 arrested at Lockheed Martin

Workers World | May 8, 2003
By Bill Hackwell

Sunnyvale, Calif. - Hundreds of protesters from all over the Bay Area converged on the sprawling Lockheed Martin plant here April 22, blocking the three main gates for most of the morning.

Lockheed Martin is the world's largest weapons producer. At the Sunnyvale facility, the company makes nuclear-tipped missiles for Trident submarines. Lockheed Martin has played no small role in the death and destruction carried out by the Pentagon against Iraq.

Lockheed Martin is incestuously connected to the Bush administration. Eight of the current top policy makers in Washington used to be on Lockheed Martin's payroll. They include Vice President Dick Cheney. Lynne Cheney, who was an official in the Reagan and first Bush administrations and is married to the vice president, served on Lockheed Martin's board of directors from 1994 to 2001.

In the past two years alone this manufacturer of weapons of mass destruction has received prime Pentagon contracts totaling $30 billion, to, among other things, produce weapons systems using depleted uranium.

In the early morning hours, demonstrators locked themselves down at the Third Street gate. They also sat in at the First Street and H Street entrances. Police arrested over 50 people.

At one point Sunnyvale police on horses charged the protesters at Third Street to separate them from those locked together at the gate.

The protest was organized by several anti-war groups in the South San Francisco Bay Area, including the South Bay Mobilization to Stop the War. This group, along with International ANSWER, has called for big protests when President George W. Bush comes to Santa Clara on May 2 to pat the arms merchants on the back.