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DePaul University Special Collections and Archives

Nuclear Arms Resistance

"Beat swords into plowshares" - Isaiah 2:4

Plowshares 8

Kings Bay Plowshares 7

On April 4, 2018, the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination, the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 infiltrated the United States naval base at Kings Bay, Georgia. This group of seven peacemakers included Carmen Trotto, Patrick O’Neill, Elizabeth McAlister, Steve Kelly SJ, Martha Hennesy, Clare Grady, and Mark Colville. Like Dr. King, they opposed “the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism.”

Kings Bay Plowshares 7

Kings Bay Plowshares 7.

The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 argued that building and stockpiling nuclear weapons at the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base constituted a war crime. The group indicted the United States government for violating international treaty law under the Constitution, the United Nations Charter, the Nuremberg Principles, and the Non-Proliferation Treaty through its sponsorship of the Trident nuclear program.

Split into three groups, the activists set out to symbolically disarm the world’s largest nuclear submarine port. They marked Trident nuclear missiles and submarines at the base with their own blood to make the weapons’ criminal and violent nature visible. Each of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 was arrested and charged with breaking and entering and destruction of federal property. For this action, they faced up to 25 years in prison.