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A coordinated international campaign this week will try to save South Korea’s beautiful Jeju Island from destruction. We have the chance to participate, and in so doing to help form a badly needed partnership between the environmental and antiwar movements.
The World Conservation Congress 2012 is being held on Jeju Island in two weeks — while just four miles away, in the island’s Gangjeong Village, construction is beginning on a massive new naval base to be used by the U.S. Dredging of the seabed and coral has already begun.
The extraordinary biological diversity, unique volcanic topography, and the culture of Jeju Island attract many tourists. The Sea of Gangjeong is a national cultural treasure adjacent to a UNESCO biosphere reserve. Only 114 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins remain, and they live here — one of many species threatened by base construction. The damage will be devastating.
But Samsung, the primary contractor for base construction, is sponsoring the World Conservation Congress (WCC), which is pretending all is well.
94% of the residents of Jeju Island have voted against construction of the base.
If the base is constructed, it will host nuclear-powered submarines and aircraft carriers, as well as Aegis missile-carrying warships. U.S. taxpayers will pay the cost of the Obama administration “pivot” into the Asia-Pacific, while Jeju Islanders pay with a damaged home. Ultimately, the cost to the earth and the risk of war will belong to all of us.
Villagers have been arrested during nonviolent protests. Police and construction workers have assaulted elderly members of the community, who represent a large portion of the activists. Raising our voices in solidarity is the least we can do.
Please forward this email widely to like-minded friends.
–The RootsAction team
P.S. Our small staff is supported by contributions from people like you; your donations are greatly appreciated.
P.P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Coleen Rowley, and many others.
Save Jeju Island
Jeju Island, South Korea
Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space
Veterans For Peace
Voices for Creative Nonviolence
Fellowship of Reconciliation
Environmentalists Against War
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