It beggars belief that some people still try to defend the indefensible atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (Letters, 07 and 10 August).

Extensive scholarship, primarily from the US, ably demonstrates that the Japanese leadership wanted to surrender and had, through various avenues, sued for peace. Much of the US military knew this. General Dwight Eisenhower said, ‘Japan was at that very moment seeking some way to surrender with minimum loss of face. It was not necessary to hit them with that awful thing.’ Two days before the Yalta Conference in January 1945 and seven months before the bombings, General Douglas Mac Arthur presented a 40-page report to President Roosevelt outlining the Japanese peace proposals.

But the US politicians thought differently. Roosevelt dismissed Mac Arthur’s recommendations with the remark, “MacArthur is our greatest general and our poorest politician.” Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson described the atom bomb as the ‘master card’ in US diplomacy towards the Soviet Union. Churchill and Roosevelt had decided as early as September 1944 that the new deadly weapon should be tested on Japan and that their ally, the Soviet Union, should not be informed before its use. They derided the efforts of eminent atomic scientist Niels Bohr who attempted to convince them to share the knowledge openly with their allies if only to prevent a post-war arms race. This gives the lie to the propaganda version that the decision about bombing was taking in extremis to force surrender.

IAWM Press Statement on refugees crisis and refugee Walli Ullah Saf, 02 August 2015

IAWM Press Statement on refugees crisis and refugee Walli Ullah Saf, 02 August 2015

In a statement issued today the Irish Anti-War Movement (IAWM) criticized EU Governments’ responses to the refugee crisis at Calais and the current treatment by the Irish Government of Afghan refugee Walli Ullah Safi.

The condition in which the refugees in Calais are being kept while denied entry to Britain is sickening according to Glenda Cimino of the IAWM Steering Committee who said that “human beings already traumatised, needy and in desperate circumstances, are being treated in an appallingly inhumane manner, in a 'supposedly civilised' part of the world. It is shocking that EU Governments are prepared to spend a fortune on police and barbed wire, but yet cannot give these people a facility to wash their hands, clean food and safe passage.

The IAWM condemns the scaremongering language of British Prime Minister David Cameron who referred to a ‘swarm’ of refugees trying to enter Britain through Calais. The simple facts are that EU countries have taken a minuscule number of refugees compared to countries in the Middle East. It is despicable that EU leaders are using this issue for their own political ends.


IAWM Press Statement, 24 July 2015

The Irish Anti-War Movement (IAWM) expressed deep concern today about plans by Minister for Defence Simon Coveney to allow the international defence industry to have increased access to the Irish Defence Forces for 'product testing', as reported in the Irish Independent on 12 July.

This clearly represents the broadening of Ireland’s involvement in the reprehensible business of arms manufacturing. The independent article noted that the Irish Military has already been involved with US Company MOOG whose products are used in missiles, military and commercial aircraft, satellites and space vehicles and launch vehicles.

While Minister Coveney is reported as saying that “the plans wouldn't involve the testing of weapons like guns or rocket launchers” the IAWM stated that the problem with increased access to an already questionable collaboration is that it will inevitably involve the Irish Defence Forces in the development of militaristic products and systems that will have no use other than to kill and maim people.

Glenda Cimino of the IAWM Steering Committee said, "they may sugarcoat this message all they want - call it 'software technology' etc. - but in the end it is still 'neutral' Ireland increasing its participation in the international war and weapons industry.”

The IAWM condemn in particular any involvement by the defence forces in the further development of drone technology. “As everyone knows, the consequence of using drones is often the death of innocent men, women and children, as well as selected 'targets' who may or may not be guilty, but never get their day in court. We have seen the devastating effects of this policy over and over again in such countries as Afghanistan, Pakistan and Gaza,” said Jim Roche, PRO of the IAWM.

He continued:

Solidarity with Refugees event for today Saturday 20 June at 5pm at the Famine Memorial

IAWM Press Statement on UN Refugee Day, 20 June 2015

The IAWM supports the Solidarity with Refugees event organized by United Against Racism for today Saturday 20 June at 5pm at the Famine Memorial and The World Poverty Stone, Custom House Quay, Dublin.

The event organized by United against Racism -
aims to highlight the plight of refugees around the world.

Memet Uludag of United Against Racism said:

“We are calling on all anti-racist organisations, civil society groups, NGOs, political parties, religious groups, migrant and refugee support organisations to join our gathering on World Refugee Day, 20 June to:

• recognize the resilience of forcibly displaced people throughout the world
• pay homage to the victims of migrant boat tragedies in the Mediterranean
• show our solidarity with refugees everywhere
• demand further and meaningful actions by the EU states to do whatever is necessary to rescue migrants and provide safety and humanitarian care”

The IAWM statement noted that the EU including the Irish Government could be doing much more to alleviate the plight of refugees worldwide.

Jim Roche, PRO IAWM said:


IAWM Press Statement on Prince Charles visit to Ireland 18 May 2015

The Irish Anti-War Movement oppose the publicly funded visit by Prince Charles to Ireland given his connections to the British Military and his open support for undemocratic, despotic regimes.

Irish political leaders and the mainstream media are making much of Prince Charles’s impending visit to Mullaghmore as a personal event of closure and an act of reconciliation that will aid the Northern Irish peace process. Many Irish people may likewise see this as a useful act, just as they regarded the Queen’s visit. The problem is that Prince Charles and the British Royalty generally are not benign forces – they play a continuous role in promoting the British military and the arms industry around the world. Prince Charles is Colonel-in-chief of many regiments of the British Army including the notorious Parachute Regiment which killed 13 innocent civilians on Bloody Sunday in Derry.

The Sein Fein leader, Gerry Adams, has expressed the hope that the Prince’s visit will be “an occasion to promote reconciliation, respect and understanding". However Prince Charles has never expressed such concern for the victims of the wars waged by the British military in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. Nor has he balked at his role in promoting the British arms industry which arms repressive regimes that have appalling human rights records. Professor Neil Cooper of Bradford University's Peace Studies Department has noted that: "There is a long history of members of the royal family supporting the promotion of the UK arms trade in the Middle East - and especially the Gulf …. It is accepted as part and parcel of the brief."


IAWM Press Statement on Chinese Premier’s visit to Ireland. 17 May 2015


Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is visiting Ireland and will be met by Taoiseach Enda Kenny to discuss trade, investment and tourism links.

The Irish Anti-War Movement rejects the idea that Ireland’s relationship with Foreign Governments should be based solely on potential monetary gain. Instead we call for some basic regard for human rights and democratic principles. The Chinese Government respects neither of these things. It is a totally undemocratic, oppressive and authoritarian one-party state with a record of brutal suppression of the Tibetan people among others.

We call on the Taoiseach and the Irish Government to raise these concerns about human rights with Premier Li Keqiang in the course of his visit.


Jim Roche, PRO, Steering Committee IAWM, Tel. 087 647 2737
John Molyneux, Secretary, Steering Committee IAWM, Tel. 085 735 6424

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