Part two of our wrap up of Auckland Peace Action’s Week of Peace (did you miss Part one?). On the second day of the Weapons Expo, a noise demo was organised to coincide with the awards ceremony and gala dinner. People were encouraged to come along with noisemakers, instruments, banners and placards – to help drown out the weapons dealers’ party happening inside.
The Wall of Noise began with industrial noise screaming through the sound system accompanied with whatever racket people could make.
Police called in noise control to shut down the sound system and confiscate another but by then the cacophony was so great it was barely noticeable when they were gone.
The wall of noise continued for three hours until 9pm when everyone had thoroughly thrashed their instruments.
It was a cathartic experience for many and a powerful way to come together and express our sentiment for the global arms trade.
On Friday a planned Navy celebration event, the 1000 soldier international street march was cancelled. The Navy said it was out of respect for earthquake victims but seeing as half the warships had swanned off to Kaikoura to prance about there together the other half seemed to have cold feet in front of some opposition.
The Peace Flotilla was organised to coincide with the Naval Review moved its date on to the Saturday as the Navy switched dates earlier in the week.
The peace flotilla set sail in Waitemata harbour to surround the navy boats in the “naval review” with support from people on land.
The Pacific Panther Network were out on the water protecting te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa.
Pinochet’s torture ship was in Auckland’s harbour.
The Peace Flotilla was another strong stand against the war machine and glorification of war from many different groups.
One of the warships parading around Auckland was an Indonesian naval ship. Indonesia illegally holds West Papua under brutal military occupation and aids Australia in denying asylum seekers the right to seek asylum.
The final day of the Week of Peace was truly a bonanza of events with the Grannies4Peace holding a tea party that same afternoon.
And then to wrap it all up an alternative prayer service outside Holy Trinity Cathedral where a naval glorification service was being held inside.
Wow! What a Week of Peace! It was so wonderful to see so many different groups get involved and make it happen. Full credit to Auckland Peace Action for awesome organising. We will take inspiration from your words and actions if the arms dealers come back to Wellington. See you next year!