In Case Of Emergency


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From top: Results of a Red C poll; Independent TDs Mick Wallace and Clare Daly (centre), with Dr John Lannon (left) and Ed Horgan (right), of Shannonwatch at a press conference in Buswells Hotel, Dublin earlier today 

Independent TDs Mick Wallace and Clare Daly released the results of a Red C poll earlier today, which show over half the population don’t agree with Ireland’s current military relationship with the United States – which uses Shannon Airport to refuel.

Some 55% of those polled say they don’t believe that the Irish Government should allow the US to use the Limerick airport for military purposes.

Mr Wallace and Ms Daly held a press conference earlier today with Dr John Lannon and Ed Horgan, of Shannonwatch, at the Buswells Hotel, Dublin, to discuss the poll’s results.

Clare Daly said:

A country with a policy of positive neutrality would not facilitate the massive, devastating displacement of tens of millions of people through wars whose only purpose is to keep the gears of the military-industrial complex oiled.”

“It would not find itself in a state of absolute moral abjection when it agreed to accept only the tiniest fraction of those made homeless and stateless by wars it had abetted. We need to put meat on the bones of our neutrality, to actively and vigorously work against war and destruction, against the arms trade, against the absolute devastation of so many lives in pursuit of imperial power and wealth?”

“Until we enshrine a policy of neutrality in our Constitution, and make it so that our neutrality is something that is real, positive, and active, we cannot and will not play that role”.

Mick Wallace said:

Since 2001, the US Military and their allies have been responsible for the deaths of over 2 million citizens in Afghanistan and Iraq alone. Mindless destruction of the Middle East region & beyond has seen the displacement of over 30 million people and an unprecedented refugee crisis in Europe today.

“It’s long past time that Ireland stopped facilitating this horror by refusing to allow Shannon Airport to be used for any military purposes. We need a change of direction – It should start with the new Government. It’s time for Ireland to work for peace, not war.”

Ed Horgan of Shannonwatch said:

Shannon airport has been used, or misused by the US military, with the approval of successive Irish Government’s since October 2001. In the meantime over three million armed US troops have transited through Shannon on their way to and from wars and military operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Syria and elsewhere.”

“In addition US military aircraft have transported unknown quantities of munitions and other war materials through Shannon airport but the Irish Government has been repeatedly denying that these aircraft are carrying weapons and munitions. Irish neutrality needs to be urgently restored to prevent Irish complicity in crimes against humanity”.

Dr John Lannon of the University of Limerick and Shannonwatch, said:

“Ireland’s failure to uphold national and international law at Shannon is shameful. The routine transit of armed troops to and from war zones is in contravention of the Hague Convention on Neutrality.”

“The authorities have failed in their responsibilities under the Convention Against Torture by not investigating rendition planes at Shannon. And they also turn a blind eye to the fact that the US military aircraft landing at Shannon are likely to be carrying people who are guilty of war crimes in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere. Under the principle of international jurisdiction, these should be investigated and prosecuted.”

Earlier: Five Years

Previously: For The Record

Pic: Ailbhe Conneely

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58 thoughts on “In Case Of Emergency

  1. Gearóid

    “Some 55% of those polled say they don’t believe that the Irish Government should allow the US to use the Limerick* airport for military purposes.”


    1. martco

      jasus would all these smartypants’ please think of de poor oul Duty Free at Shannon???

      if all dem soldiers weren’t there anymore what then, eh?

  2. steve white

    Clare Daly and Mick Wallace are not actually Independent TDs they are members of a registered political party ‘Independents 4 Change’

  3. Jake38

    What do the 57% think we should do if attacked? Hand the aggressors a copy of the Constitution? Pathetic.

    1. Mysterybeat

      Yeah, because in our current situation we’ve got so much safety. We’ve basically been a convenient landing area for whatever superpower decided to take over for the last 70 years, and we were a convenient port for the British empire for the few hundred tears since.
      I’d prefer to take my chances and at least retain some national pride, than just roll over for a few bob.

      1. Jake38

        I’m not entirely sure how writing into our constitution that we have no intention of ever fighting for anything we might believe in would do anything for what remains of our national pride.

        1. :-Joe

          You’re free to emigrate and sign up for any war at any time.

          The national security of this country is already at risk thanks to our disregard for international law and supporting the US in it’s crimes against humanity.


        2. Mysterybeat

          I’m not sure you understand what neutrality actually means. It’s possible to be non-aligned or militarily neutral without being passive (I don’t mean pacifist).
          We have for many years fought around the globe for things that we believed in, via UN-mandated missions to enforce and keep peace. That seems like the kind of thing that is going to bring a lot more respect from people around the world, rather than dancing to the tune of a bigger more militaristic nation.

        3. f_lawless

          What’s pathetic is your contribution to the debate. It’s about the resisting being used a pawn in imperialist war games and not “writing into our constitution that we have no intention of ever fighting for anything we might believe in” as you put it. That’s just silly.

          1. Wayne.F

            So F_lawless, I assume you support a massive increase in military spending to be able to maintain and protect the
            neutrality that you write into the constitution. Below is a rough list of what would be required

            10-20 maritime vessels to protect shipping and ports

            2-4 fighter jet squadrons approx 10 planes on each. Training aircraft and other infrastructure to support them

            5-10 maritime patrol aircraft.
            Another 30 rotary aircraft

            Massively upgraded air defence system

            And the a long list of new assets for our ground forces

          2. f_lawless

            I think that’s what they call a “straw man” argument. Why does allowing Irish citizens to have a greater say in deciding whether to align ourselves with the imperialistic aspirations of other nations necessitate a massive increase in Irish military spending?

          3. Jake38

            My interest is in protecting the constitution from partisan abuse with God knows what consequences in the future. “Pawns of imperialist warmongers” figure prominently in student union debates where I’m sure you can continue to work yourself into a froth over them.

          4. Wayne.F

            F_lawless because making yourself neutral is not just about words in a constitution. You will require the ability to protect your airspace and shipping lanes in the event of a conflict breaking out. The Americans and British did it for us in WW1 and WW2.
            You cant possibly be that childish to believe we can be neutral and not have the ability to maintain access to our island nations trade routes and air space. Just look at other neutral nations like Sweden and Switzerland for an example of what is required to remain truly neutral

        4. Jesus Wept

          “fighting for anything we might believe in”,like God maybe.That’s a good reason to kill somebody.

  4. Harry Molloy

    as it stands I would be happy to be part of a country with a neutral policy but I wouldn’t want it enshrined as you don’t know what’s around the corner.
    world war 2 for example, a fight well worth fighting. hope we won’t see it’s like again but who knows…

  5. shitferbrains

    Behind the speeches of those four is a deep and abiding hatred of Israel, whom they believe is the ” root cause ” of all troubles in the ME. And if they could only be defeated and scattered to the four winds – again – the Arabs would revert to their default position of peaceful coexistence.

    1. f_lawless

      Their call to have our neutrality enshrined in the Constitution is motivated by a deep and abiding hatred of Israel? I can’t see any reference to Israel in the above.. says more about your own disturbed mindset…. unless, you have some references to back all that up?!

    1. TheFerg

      Ah, you missed the memo – “constituted” is a noun now because some tax dodger says so.
      Please try to keep up wit de nu verbidge.

  6. Cluster

    I would vote against an attempt to enshrine neutrality in the constitution, even though I’m generally in favour of it in principle.

    It unnecessarily ties the hands of a govt in the future from even bluffing.

    I know there’s scepticism about politicians at the moment but the answer is to elect less bullsh!t TDs (including Wallace, Lowry, Kenny, FF) instead of trying to enshrine all your current favoured policies into the constitution.

    1. some old queen

      I Agree, they may need to invade the north after Brexit when Britain imposes border controls on their island.

      1. some old queen

        After Brexit, one of two things happen. Border controls are placed on the border of UK and ROI or border controls are placed around the Island of Britain, Theresa Villiers has already stated that there will be no border controls between ROI and NI. In that case, the north’s position within the UK will become weakened and civil unrest will become almost a certainty.

      2. some old queen

        Add to that the fact that Scotland will demand independence therefore the breakup of the UK becomes inevitable and you are into a very volatile situation in NI.

      3. Cluster

        I don’t know how it would come about but that’s exactly the point. You can’t predict all plausible future scenarios in advance.

        Anyhow, if we are really to enshrine neutrality into our constitution, then we’ll want to seriously beef up the armed forces

  7. Cluster

    It’s weird. I see the results of polls (sometimes several different polls) every day & I have never once been in the sample. How do they dig them up?

    1. f_lawless

      Have you ever considered that the fact it seems weird to you could be a sign of narcissistic tendencies – as in, an over inflated sense of self importance? Just a thought.

      1. Cluster

        Not really. Statistically, it’s odd that I never have. I said it to a couple in work & almost all of them had never been polled.

    2. Lorcan Nagle

      I’ve been polled at least once, while still living with my parents. They rang the home phone, asked my mum a few questions, then asked if there was a teenager in the house who’d be willing to be polled and I said yes.

      Bear in mind that most polls tend to ask between 1,000 and 2,000 people for responses, as apparently once you get to that number of answers it scales up accurately. So the odds of being polled are around 2% per poll comissioned.

      1. Hank

        “then asked if there was a teenager in the house who’d be willing to be polled and I said yes”


  8. Stumpy

    The notion of Irish neutrality has long been a nonsense. Happy to claim all of the rights, but none of the responsibility.

  9. Owen

    How much are we payed each year for the use of Shannon by the yanks, and if they stop the planes landing will it have negative influences on any business in Ireland (other then direct financial loss from the planes landing)?

    Answer that before you ask if people want them landing.

    Personally I don’t want them landing, but lets get a clear picture.

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