The "Pitstop Ploughshares" were charged in 2003 after disabling a US Navy plane bound for the Gulf at Shannon airport. The five defendants protested that Ireland was a neutral country and should not allow US warplanes to pitstop on the way to Iraq. Exerts from the defense attourney were posted at Commondreams.org and are worth reading:
"The final summations of each defense counsel urged jurors not only to ask whether the defendants were right to take action, but also ask why it is that the rest of us haven't acted. Mr. Nix, praised by the prosecutor as "the last of the great orators," noted that the prosecutor had characterized the action of the defendants "political" as if that were a bad thing. "I'll tell you of someone who made a great political speech," said Mr. Nix, "the greatest political speech of all time and that's Jesus Christ." He went on to quote the Sermon on the Mount to the jury. I could hear the pencils stop scratching, see the jaws drop all around the courtroom. It was an awe-inspiring moment. The shock was yet to come.
Mr. Nix told us he had recently been in a park where he'd listened to children laugh and shout as they happily chased ducks and each other around on the green grass. He thought a sound of universal happiness must be the sound of children playing.
But now his tone darkened. "Now Lebanon is burning," he thundered. "Today, children swimming in a pool were bombed. A swimming pool is now filled with burning children. This is war."
He concluded, " What will rise you to action?" Perhaps we are all on trial as this war spreads.
For more on the Pitstop Ploughshares see Peace on Trial.