Freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it.
Dear Arctic 30.
You are all heroes and we will get you out of there.
Together we’ll never give up never giving up.
Thinking of you everyday and all that you stand for.
Keep fighting. We are all fighting with you!
Free the Arctic 30
You are my heroes. The world know all about GAZPROM now. Thank you!
We’ve never met, but I read you moving letter this morning and it made me cry. Yeah. It’s a bit embarrassing to admit that but what you said was incredibly touching, particularly the bit about doing this for Russia and its children.
I’ve got a two year old kid, Rosa. She’s got a cuddly polar bear that she loves - well technically its second to her snow monkey - and I keep thinking how I’ll explain all this to her in the future. Not about the polar bears (even she knows the real ones are actually quite frightening) but about the bigger threats to our world by fossil fuel companies digging up fuel we cannot burn. How do I explain to her that we as humans are doing this stuff on such an incredibly destructive level when just throwing her food around the table will land her on the naughty step?
I imagine her one day doing her frowny face when trying to understand the bigger picture - why the adults who have been telling her since day zero how to understand the world could have got it so wrong.
I like to think that when that happens I can point to you, the other 29 and everyone else who’s ever peacefully put themselves on the line for a better world and say we weren’t all zombies. Despite all the pressures to stop them - economic, social and military - there were some great people who really did speak truth to power.
Thanks Po-Paul for everything you do. It’s heartbreaking to know you’re lonely in there when there are so many millions of us out here cheering you on.
Love and strength,
Thinking of you all and have signed petitions etc so that you can come home SOON!
Feel pretty useless writing this and hope that SOON someone see sense!!
Sending our thoughts and special wishes. Know you’ll be fine.
Love from the Parker family. (Scotland)
Hello everyone! Out there ;-)
Sorry my English is not very good, and my writing even worse! But I guess you will figure it out.
I am now for about 12 days alone in a cell. I don’t have books, newspaper, TV or someone to talk to. At the daily walk I am also isolated. The 4x5 metre “walkyard” is surrounded by concrete walls and covered with iron bars. On top is a roof, which doesn’t allow the sunshine in.
The only sky I can see is out of my cell window , which is placed in the northern wall of the building. This means no sun at all. Days are long! The highlights are weekly visits of my lawyer and consul. And yesterday I got the first bunch of email from the outside! Yehaa…
The aggressive and unfair acting of the Russian government and Gazprom shows how important it is, that decisions about Arctic and its future are made by global public. And not by states and companies which are blinded by its resources and short term profits.
At the 18 September I faced danger and the risk ending up in jail, because I am sure that WE have the power to make a change! WE the massive amount of people worldwide which are brave and concerned enough to fight for a future to coming generations. Because we see the dependency of our future existing to the acting now.
Let’s save the Arctic and with it also the chance of future for mankind. Your support and the knowledge that we have done the right thing keeps me above water. Thank you very much for your kind words, love and care you give to me.
You are incredibly important!
CAN BE USED, IF IT’S ANY USEFUL
Don’t be worried about me! (for now)
Marco Weber, 8th October to everyone
Life is settling down to a daily grind where the merest opening of the peep hole from outside causes a ripple of excitement from within. One of my cell mates has been transferred to another which means only one chain smoker.
I’m taking the one hour of exercise seriously and did some calculations. If I walk round the flooded 5m x 5m concrete pen 80 times it’s the equivalent of walking to Queen’s Park Tube Station.
Frank Hewetson, 8th October to Greenpeace UK
I honestly believed I’d be out of prison by now. I’m slowly coming to terms with the prospect of spending two months here. But it’s not knowing what will happen after that that I find really hard. I prayed for the first time in my life the other day. I prayed for freedom and courage.
I am definitely getting stronger. I try to keep myself ‘busy’ with little things like doing the laundry, sweeping the floor and doing exercises. I sound like Cinderella! I also write a lot. I listen to a lot of music as it helps to lift my spirits. My friend Camila is in the cell next door so we tap on the wall in beat with the music. We’ve just been tapping to ‘everything’s gonna be alright’ in Bob Marley’s no woman, no cry. I really hope it will be alright. As Ana Paula told me, ‘you can’t give up hope - it’s the only thing we’ve got’.
I heard the Arctic sunrise mentioned on the radio the other day. It was in Russian so I couldn’t understand it but it’s great to know the world is talking about us. On a good day I get to see my lawyer and hear news of protests all over the world. You wouldn’t believe the difference the news makes. It really makes me feel better and I thank every single person who has joined a protest or sent an email. If there’s one good thing to come of this horrible situation it’s just that - the world is talking about Arctic oil and I’ve played a role in that. That’s why the 30 of us are here.
We’re allowed to leave our cell and walk for one hour each day. We’re locked in what can be described as an outdoor chicken pen. It’s horrible. But yesterday I saw that someone had scratched ‘Save the Arctic’ into the wall. It made me laugh.
To get myself through the long days and nights I think of my family. I dream of the day I can run into their arms. I heard that my sister joined the protest in London and has been speaking on TV - that makes me so proud.
I also think of the other 29, who I now consider family, locked up here. I think back to the days when we were all together on the Arctic Sunrise, so proud and excited to be heading to the Arctic working on such an important campaign. Those days seem so long ago now. Even though I can’t see them I know I’m not alone and that make me stronger.
When we were taken off the ship to be arrested we were escorted by the coast guard ship and then by a bus. It felt like a scene from the cold war. It was dark. The bus was old and smelt of metal - I could taste it in my mouth. We were driven through a series of derelict buildings. There were more guards than there were of us. I was scared. I told my friend Phil that I was worried that I wouldn’t cope in a solitary cell not knowing what was going to happen. He told me I’d be fine. To always remember that there are a lot of people on the outside working very hard to release you. I have to constantly remind myself of that now.
Alexandra Harris, 10th October to James Lorenz
Post to everyone that has written to me
I can’t put it anymore simply than “thanks”. Some of you I know, some I’ve heard of, some I’ll never even meet. Your kind thoughts, support and humor mean a lot to me right now, it is the simple things in life.
In the words of an old and trusted workmate and friend: “What is this monkey business?” I have no idea, just more questions than answers. The only thing I’m sure of is the thing that ties us all together - wanting a clean, green and peaceful planet.
It’s impossible to write to you all, it just ain’t happening from here, so that’s it.
To those who know Sarah and have heard of Theo, please give your support to them, they mean so much to me.
Definitely time to stand up, speak up and be heard.
Thanks for that.
See you on the other side
David Haussmann, 13th October to everyone
The world is talking about the Arctic because of you. Nothing is lost. Nothing is wasted. #FreeTheArctic30
The world’s eyes are on Russia & Big Oil because of the sacrifice you made.
We will not rest until you are free.
Murmansk prison SIZO-1, cell 217
Lovely Greenpeace family
I don’t know how to thank you enough for all the support, warm thoughts and love that we get from you. Hearing about all the support that we get world-wide really squeezes my heart and puts tears in my eyes. We are so lucky to have you! I feel sorry for all the activists behind bars around the world who can’t have the same support and care as we.
Receiving all the letters, messages and greetings really makes my days and weeks. I read them all over again and again and they make me smile, laugh and even cry at the same time. They bring so much light into the darkening and early Murmansk winter.
I want to tell you all that I’m doing well and so are the other girls in the team, I hear of them every day. All our team is in the same prison and that makes me feel safe. We are treated well in the prison, and many of us have received support and respect from the other prisoners. We are finally getting some books from the prison library. Our support team in Murmansk keeps us happy and safe by sending us food and clothes. If they wouldn’t be here this all would be so much harder, we would be very hungry and quite so cold.
The early winter is here in Murmansk, it has snowed during a couple of days already. I spend a lot of time looking out through the window when the sun shines, it makes me think of all of you supporting us, it makes me happy and makes me smile. When it is snowing, I think about the Arctic, the sea ice, the beautiful nature up here, and it gives me strength, it gives this all a meaning.
Other than that I spend my days writing, reading, drawing. I dance every day in my cell and am already familiar to the Russian pop music. During our “walks” I jump around the concrete box and the guards laugh at me. I stretch and sing (luckily the walls are thick).
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
WIth thousands of hugs and warm thoughts, missing you all,
Sini Saarela, 15th October to Greenpeace