Fifteen years after Shannon Airport was made available to the US military for their illegal invasions of Afghanistan and then Iraq, both countries are in violent turmoil. Here's a small snapshot of what happened in the last couple of days alone:
On Sept 30th a US drone strike in Nangarhar, Afghanistan killed 15 civilians.
On Sept 28t in Iraq IS set fire to 3 more oil wells; Iraqi forces launched an offensive near Ramadi after capturing additional nearby territory last week; US helicopters transported IS captives from remote areas in Anbar to undisclosed destinations, possibly to be tortured; and IS bombings in Shiite areas of Baghdad killed at least 17 people.
The US agreed to send more troops in addition to the 4,400 who are already officially deployed there. These probably went through - or will go through - Shannon.
Meanwhile in Aleppo in Syria hospitals are being bombed by Russian-backed government forces. 100 children have been killed in the city since last Friday alone as the all out destruction of Aleppo reaches a new level. Peace deals have been broken and a quarter of a million people are now trapped in eastern Aleppo with almost no access to food, medicine, or clean water.
In 2001 the US unleashed a war of terror in response to the appalling violent attach of Sept 11th that has killed and displaced millions of people. Since then the imperialist powers have continued to start and fuel wars, while rendering the UN powerless to deal with them.
In response to Ireland's support for one of these imperialist powers, the US, Shannonwatch is hosting a series of events on October 8th and 9th to mark a shameful 15 years of support for war by Shannon Airport. We call for as much support as possible to demand an end to Irish government support for the wars in the Middle East. Ends the US military use of Shannon now.
14:00 - 17:00: Seminar and discussion on US imperialism and militarization at the Bunratty Castle Hotel (Bunratty). (Note the change in venue).
Speakers will include Robert Fantina of World Beyond War, a global nonviolent movement to end war and establish a just and sustainable peace, and Gearóid O'Colmáin, an Irish journalist living in Paris who has appeared on RT and Press TV. [Attendance is free but please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in attending]
19:00 onwards: Celebration of Peace - an evening of food, music and conversation in a Peace Tent at at Shannon
A number of people intend to hold an overnight peace vigil in tents that will be provided at Shannon on Saturday night / Sunday morning. Please consider joining us on that overnight peace vigil which is intended to be in solidarity with refugees and asylum seekers fleeing conflicts, terror and hunger. The overnight conditions at Shannon will be far more clement than those faced by refugees in rubber inflatable boats fleeing across the Mediterranean.
13:00 - 15:00 Peace Rally. Gather at Shannon Town Centre (car park next to Lidl) at 13:00 and walk to airport. Family-friendly. Bring banners, bugles and peace flags.
About the Speakers (Oct 8th)
Robert Fantina is an activist and journalist, working for peace and social justice. He writes extensively about the oppression of the Palestinians by apartheid Israel. He is the author of several books, including 'Empire, Racism and Genocide: A History of U.S. Foreign Policy'. His writing appears regularly on Counterpunch.org, MintPressNews and several other sites. Originally from the U.S., Mr. Fantina moved to Canada following the 2004 U.S. presidential election, and now resides in Kitchener, Ontario. Visit his web page at http://robertfantina.com/.
Gearóid Ó Colmáin, Paris correspondent for American Herald Tribune, is a journalist and political analyst. His work focuses on globalization, geopolitics and class struggle. His articles have been translated into many languages. He is a regular contributor to Global Research, Russia Today International, Press TV English, Press TV France,Sputnik Radio France, Sputnik Radio English , Al Etijah TV, and has also appeared on Al Jazeera , Al Mayadeen TV and Russia's Channel One. He writes in English, Irish and French. Visit his web page at www.gearoidocolmain.org.