INTERVIEW: Anti-radar protest in Brdy by Greenpeace

Aktuálně.cz national news reporters
30. 4. 2008 18:00
One of the activists answered questions online

Prague/Brdy - Twenty members of the Greenpeace have been occupying the site in the Brdy military zone where the US radar base is to be installed. They are planning to stay there for several weeks as a protest against the planned radar base installation.

Lieutenant Colonel Březovský who is in charge of the military zone in Brdy has asked the protesters to leave the place - unsuccessfully.

Aktualne.cz gave yesterday its readers the opportunity to learn more about the protest action by asking one of the direct participants of the protest Jan Freidinger.

However, most of the questions were aimed at general attitude of the Greenpeace towards the US radar base rather than the ongoing protest. Freidinger was also forced to react to a number of accusations raised against his organization.

We have selected the most interesting and important statements Freidinger made in the online interview.

Green and peace, it's that simple

"As is manifested by the name of our organization, our activities are aimed at two main goals: clean environment and (nuclear) disarmament. Originally, our activities were focused against nuclear tests, thus disarmament issue is not novel to us," he explained general focus of the Greenpeace in response to a question how the environmental protection is related to the political and national security issues.

"We are not indifferent to our country's defense, but we don't support installation of a facility that is not only useless, but at the same time increases international tension and challenges new arms races," said Freidinger after being accused of payling down the national security issues.

Outside of politics?

Repeatedly, the activist was asked about how is the organization financed. "The Greenpeace relies on contributions from individual supporters, we don't accept donations from private companies, governments, public grants, and so on," he explained.

Freidinger assured that they are an apolitical organization that even shares particular beliefs with different political parties. "For example, we share with the Civic Democrats of Litvínov their opinion on increases of brown coal mining, with the Social Democrats their stance towards the US radar issue, or with the Green Party their attitude to energetics or bio-fuels."

In touch with US experts, politicians

Freidinger also informed that the current protest is only a tip of the iceberg of the activities linked to the radar issue.

"Look at our web site and you will learn that we have done much more with regard to the radar - we have organized a visit of  US missile defense expert Phillip Coyle, we have mediated between the US Congressmen and the Czech anti-radar activists, we have raised scientific objections to official government studies about the radar's influence, we present online info-bulletins about the missile defense."

The Greenpeace activist also assured that Phillip Coyle is "closely cooperating" with them.

Read more:
Ex-Pentagon man shoots down US anti-missile shield
Better safe than sorry. Mr. Umbrella pitches for radar

Anti-Americanism? Nonsense

Freidinger rejects an allegation of the Greenpeace's being anti-American: "We are not at odds with the USA, it is the country of our origin and where we still have a branch, in addition we are closely cooperating with some of the US Congressmen and with defense experts."

When asked a related question of what information sources on the US missile defense issue the Czech Greenpeace uses, Freidinger explained that their data are mostly from the US resources, be it former US Deputy Minister of Defense Phillip Coyle or information presented by the US Congress.

 

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Zdroj: ČTK
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