"Because Canada should build homes, not blow them up"
PO Box 73620, 509 St. Clair Ave. West
Toronto, ON M6C 1C0
(416) 651-5800, email@example.com
Dec. 20, 2002
Executive Vice-President, Chief Operating Officer
Litton Systems Canada
A Division of Northrop Grumman
25 City View Drive
Toronto, ON M9W 5A7
FAX: (416) 245-0324
Dear Mr. Ratcliffe,
We are writing as concerned people who live either in the Metro Toronto area or in communities throughout Ontario who are concerned about what is going on in our midst: namely, the production of weapons whose only purpose is mass human destruction.
As individuals gravely concerned about the apocalyptic effects of modern warfare, and the increasing ferocity of modern weapons systems, we are attempting to initiate dialogue with corporations such as yours in the hope that we may look at ways of transforming your businesses from producers of weapons to makers of products which serve humankind and the environment.
Hence, this letter serves notice of our intent to conduct a nonviolent weapons inspection at your facility on Monday, January 20, 2003, Martin Luther King Day. Given the body of international law regarding the production, sale and use of weapons of mass human destruction, we are sure you can understand the need for our unfettered, immediate access to your facility.
Given the urgency of world events, we are sure you can also appreciate the need to lay plans for disarming your stockpiles of weapons systems and components whose only use is to produce terror, fear, and death.
Just as Saddam Hussein has used weapons of mass human destruction against his people, your weapons have been used against the Iraqi people as well, with deadly results.
The basis of our inspection is very clear. Our purpose on January 20 is to determine the extent of your ongoing capacity to produce weapons systems and components which have been, are currently being used for, or could be involved in violations of international law and humanitarian principles.
We will be seeking information on a variety of aspects of your business, including, but not limited to, the following:
production of the inertial navigational system and the weapons release computer sets for the F-4 Phantom fighter-bomber, used to deadly effect against the peoples of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia in the 1960s and 1970s.
production of similar systems for the F-111 fighter-bomber in the abovementioned wars of aggression.
production of the inertial guidance systems for thousands of air-, land- and sea-launched cruise missiles used extensively to terrorize the people of Iraq and the former Yugoslavia, Afghanistan and Sudan.
development of guidance systems and navigational equipment for the U.S. F-22, described variously as the "next-generation air superiority fighter" of the U.S. Air Force as well as a fighter designed for a "first-look, first-kill capability against multiple targets." Your press materials describe the company as a "Star Supplier" to Lockheed Martin, the primary F-22 contractor. Such technology clearly violates a growing body of laws which outlaws the use of war as an instrument of national policy.
the production and maintenance of similar systems for the RAH-66 Comanche helicopter, described as the "world's most advanced helicopter and the cornerstone of the U.S. Army's Force XXI aviation modernization plan." The Comanche "can go to war with up to 14 "Fire and Forget" Hellfire anti-tank missiles [and] a three-barreled, 20 mm turreted nose mini-gun that can shoot 1500 rounds per minute." Given the fact that most anti-tank munitions are now covered in depleted uranium, we have great concerns about you supplying technology which is thereby used in nuclear warfare.
production of components for the A-10 Warthog, the depleted-uranium-coated munitions for which have been implicated in a sharp spike in the cancer rates of the people of Iraq, the former Yugoslavia, and Puerto Rico (where it is used in war training)
production of components for the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the U.S. fighter-bomber which flew more missions than any other aircraft during the 1991 slaughter codenamed "Operation Desert Storm" and during the bombing of the former Yugoslavia.
production of custom cockpit Liquid Crystal Displays (LCD) for the CF18 Modernization Program in Canada. The CF-18 is already a deadly fighter jet, a weapon of mass human destruction described in 1991 by Canadian General Gerard Theriault as having an accuracy which makes "the destructive ability of one CF-18 as great as an attack by hundreds of bombers in World War II."
production of the BAT precision weapon system, designed to bring "unmatched range, accuracy and lethality to the battlefield."
Surely we need not have to remind you that you have obligations, encoded in Canadian law since the end of the Second World War and solidified under Canada's War Crimes Act, not to participate in any activity which promotes wars of aggression. We are all bound by what U.S. Chief Prosecutor Robert K. Jackson declared in 1948: [T]he very essence of the [Nuremberg] Charter is that individuals have intentional duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience imposed by the individual state."
At the Tokyo War Crimes trial, it was further declared "[A]nyone with knowledge of illegal activity and an opportunity to do something about it is a potential criminal under international law unless the person takes affirmative measures to prevent commission of the crimes."
You may be wondering why we are associating Litton/Northrop Grumman with crimes. In one example that implicates most of your technology, so-called coalition forces (U.S., U.K., Canada) knowingly bombed the civilian infrastructure of Iraq in 1991 with the intention of inflicting massive civilian suffering through the destruction of electrical and water treatment facilities. Feel free to visit the website http://www.progressive.org/0801issue/nagy0901.html for further information on this crime.
Such terror bombing is a cornerstone of the US Air Force Strategic Attack Doctrine, publicly available on the USAF website at
The use of depleted uranium-coated weapons has resulted in disastrously high rates of cancers and birth deformities across Iraq and, as we are beginning to see, in the former Yugoslavia as well. We will bring such documentation to share with you on January 20.
These are all serious issues which demand our attention, some of them so difficult it would normally be our preference to turn our heads and look the other way. So perhaps we can begin the process of dialogue, discussion, and transformation with the words of Northrop Grumman Chairman, President and CEO K. Kresa, who states, "Ethics is not a policing function. It's about creating the kind of climate in which people are encouraged to make the right decisions in the first place."
The crimes planned for an impending war against Iraq are almost beyond belief. The crimes already documented in wars which have used your technology are equally horrific and self-evident.
We are sick at heart that the people of Iraq, Afghanistan, or any other country should be the victim of policies which some only see as immoral and illegal in hindsight. A decision by you to choose peace, not war, homes, not bombs, life, not murder, would send an unmistakable message that the world so desperately needs to hear.
On January 20, we invite you to join us to help you and all employees of Litton Systems Canada/Northrop Grumman Canada make "the right decision in the first place": to renounce war, to fall in line with international and Canadian law, and to take the steps necessary to live together on this planet as a human community, undivided by the violence imposed by divisions based on class, race, gender, sexual orientation, or any of the numerous other forms of discrimination which keep us from living together in peace.
We obviously cannot wait for the final proof, the smoking gun, that could come in the form of a nuclear mushroom cloud delivered by a Litton-guided cruise missile. We similarly cannot wait for the final proof in newly destroyed water filtration systems, child care facilities, hospitals, and other social infrastructure which will be destroyed by the use of these weapons.
We look forward to hearing from you regarding any arrangements necessary to conduct our inspection.
Rev. Brian Burch
on behalf of Homes not Bombs
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