Why is Ireland involved in this brutal war?
The occupation of Iraq has killed nearly 1 million Iraqis, destroyed Iraqi society, created sectarian
strife. Over 3,000 US troops have been killed and over 4 million Iraqis have been displaced.
Cindy Sheehan, the US peace activist, broke down and wept when she was in Shannon. It was the
last place that her son Casey was before he was killed in Iraq.
Everyone has been lied to in this war. The American people were told that it was about the war
on terror; in fact it was about oil.
The British were told that they were
under threat from Saddam; it was
Even generals and chiefs of
staff are now saying that the war
was a mistake and the troops
should be withdrawn. Soldiers on
the ground are poorly equipped
and under excessive danger. The
situation in Iraq has become so
bad that many now no longer know what they are there for. Even Bush has compared it to Vietnam.
In the wider stage of the middle
east, US plans to bring “rogue
states” to heel has imploded.
Israel’s invasion of Lebanon, allowed to proceed last summer with Washington’s agreement, represented an unprecedented military and political defeat.
Afghanistan now has 50% of its land once again under the control of the Talliban and its civilian population suffering carpet bombing that is wiping out entire villages. In Ireland we have been told that we are participating in the war on Iraq because we have a special relationship with the US. Later we were told that US troops could use Shannon because it was permitted under UN mandate, even though UN Resolution 1511 was passed seven months after the invasion of Iraq. Many Irish politicians in the run-up to the election declared themselves openly against Ireland’s involvement in the war on Iraq and 78 signed the IAWM anti-war pledge. Post –election they have quickly changed their tune. Some have said that nothing can be done now and promised that any future involvement in a war will have to be passed by the Dail. This conveniently lets them off the hook regarding Iraq. Meanwhile huge numbers of US troops continue to go through Shannon. This denial of democratic accountability to the people of Ireland cannot go on. The Irish Anti War Movement wants to give voice to the majority in Ireland who want no involvement in this war.
• immediate cessation of the use of Shannon by US troops
• lobby of Irish politicians to carry through on their election pledges to oppose
Come on this demonstration and add your voice to the anti war movement and
show this government that we do not accept their complicity in this war.
In Ireland, the degree to which the Irish economy is dependent on the US makes an understanding
of the contradictions assailing the US all the more important for us. After all, the use of
Shannon by US military is the political price willingly paid by our government for the hugely profitable
investments that US capital has made here. Profits made by US companies in Ireland doubled
between 1999 and 2002 from $13.4 billion to $26.8 billion and Ireland is described as a ‘semi-tax
haven’ for US firms. For the US the economic and the military go hand in hand and it is that chain of
logic that the Irish anti-war movement seeks to break.