Thursday, 24 September 2015

Revelations re Shannon and Ireland's complicity in War

from Shannonwatch

Shannonwatch, 23rd Sept 2015

Extent of Shannon and Ireland’s Complicity in War Revealed

The Department of Transport has revealed that in 2014 a total of 272 flights were given permits to take weapons or explosives through Shannon Airport. In response to a freedom of information request by Shannonwatch they confirmed that the majority of the flights were taking US troops between military bases and locations in the Middle East. The information also shows that US troop carriers and aircraft with machine guns, rocket motors and other war material are routinely allowed to fly through Irish airspace. Again the majority of these are flying to or from US military bases around the world.

The permits are requested by airline operators under the Air Navigation (Carriage of Munitions of War, Weapons and Dangerous Goods) Order. Close to twenty requests were refused in 2014 but the Department would not reveal where these were from or why they were refused. It would only state that they were refused on the advice of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

“The information provided by the Department shows the alarming level of support that Ireland is giving to US military operations overseas” said John Lannon of Shannonwatch. “Over 550 permits were granted to airlines carrying troops, weapons and explosives to their forward operating bases. There would seem to be an overwhelming bias towards facilitating flights from the US and other NATO countries. How can our government claim we are in any way neutral when this is happening?”

“The information reveals flights going to the likes of Saudi Arabia which is dropping cluster bombs on Yemen” continued John Lannon. “When we see the scale of the refugee crisis created by the use of weapons in Syria we begin to get a glimpse of how arms shipments can impact on a region. It’s not something we should be part of.”

The companies identified as carrying weapons and other war related material for the US include Atlas Air, Omni Air International, Southern Air, National Airlines, Delta Air, Kalitta Air and North American Airlines. 

 “The records received by Shannonwatch reveal a lack of transparency, no proper oversight and little regard for the consequences of war.” according to John Lannon. “It is shameful that the Department of Transport had to be compelled under freedom of information legislation to make these details available. Why couldn’t the government have answered some of the many requests made by TDs like Clare Daly, Mick Wallace and Sinn Fein’s Sean Crowe for details of what is being brought through Shannon by the US army?”

Even though the Department of Transport has finally made this data available, Shannonwatch say that they still don’t know what is on the US Air Force Hercules that land at Shannon. “These aircraft are exempt from freedom of information and the only way to find out what is on them is to do what Mick Wallace and Clare Daly tried to do in July of last year, which was to inspect the planes themselves.” said John Lannon.

Former army commandant Edward Horgan who is also a Shannonwatch member said “The FOI documents show that on 6 particular flights the amount of small arms ammunition, that is bullets, sent from the USA to Afghanistan in 2014 amount to almost 420,000 lbs weight which is about 190 metric tons. We are led to believe that these flights were approved to fly through Irish airspace by the Department of Foreign Affairs.”

“In my (military) opinion, this ammunition was probably intended to supply the Afghan army. However, given how events have developed in Iraq, where huge amounts of arms including tanks and armoured vehicles and vast quantities of ammunition supplied by the US to the Iraqi army, was both captured and handed over to ISIS and other militia groups, then it is not unlikely that in time, much of this 190 metric tons of ammunition sent by the US to Afghanistan in 2014 could be captured or handed over to the Taliban and other such groups”.

“US arms manufacturers will be delighted with these developments as they will continue to replace all this ammunition expended in wars, or stolen and handed over to the likes of ISIS”.

The information provided to Shannonwatch reveals US troop movements via Shannon to airports in Eastern Europe as well as to Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Jordan, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. Shannonwatch have published a complete list of all the flights on their website, with details of flight sources and destinations, what they were carrying and whether or not the plane landed in Ireland.

For more information contact 087 8225087 or email

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Letter to Governor Mary Fallin re unjust execution of Richard Glossip

Dear Mary

You have the unbelievable power to stop an unjust execution and give a chance to a proper defence team to fight the injustice for the first time.

With that power comes responsibility

Please change your mind and grant a stay to Richard Glossip who, you must know by now, was stitched up for the murder of Mr Van Treese, when they interviewed Justin Sneed and hid the video of the interview.

What a shambles of a prosecution on which to justify the taking of innocent human life.  No fingerprints, no DNA evidence.  Only the word of the killer prompted by State interrogators.

Poverty is not a crime.  Richard's poverty denied him a proper defence.

The death penalty is utterly barbaric.  "We think you're guilty by our standards, therefore we kill you" is a motto worthy of Jihadi John and his Isis clan of murderers. Please don't join them.

With best personal wishes

Justin Morahan
Pacifist, human rights activist
Dublin Ireland

Monday, 14 September 2015

Full list of Jeremy Corbyn's new Cabinet - from Social Media

Nigel Morris

New shadow Environment Sec Kerry McCarthy - who'll be dealing with farmers - is a vegan
12:56 PM - 14 Sep 2015

Full list of shadow cabinet appointments:
Leader of the Opposition and Leader of the Labour Party
Jeremy Corbyn MP

Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Party Chair and Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office
Tom Watson MP

Shadow First Secretary of State, Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills
Angela Eagle MP

Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer
John McDonnell MP

Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury
Seema Malhotra MP

Shadow Home Secretary
Andy Burnham MP

Shadow Foreign Secretary
Hilary Benn MP

Opposition Chief Whip
Rosie Winterton MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Health
Heidi Alexander MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Education
Lucy Powell MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
Owen Smith MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Defence
Maria Eagle MP

Shadow Lord Chancellor, Shadow Secretary of State for Justice
Lord Falconer of Thoroton

Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Shadow Minister for the Constitutional Convention
Jon Trickett MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
Lisa Nandy MP

Shadow Leader of the House of Commons
Chris Bryant MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Transport
Lilian Greenwood MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
Vernon Coaker MP

Shadow Secretary of State for International Development
Diane Abbott MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland
Ian Murray MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Wales
Nia Griffith MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Kerry McCarthy MP

Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities
Kate Green MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
Michael Dugher MP

Shadow Minister for Young People and Voter Registration
Gloria De Piero MP

Shadow Minister for Mental Health
Luciana Berger MP

Shadow Leader of the House of Lords
Baroness Smith of Basildon

Lords Chief Whip
Lord Bassam of Brighton

Shadow Attorney General
Catherine McKinnell MP

Shadow Minister without Portfolio
Jonathan Ashworth MP

Shadow Minister for Housing and Planning
John Healey MP

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Churches should Open to Refugees and Poor

Over a week ago I wrote to the Irish Examiner, Irish Independent and Irish Times suggesting that our churches should open their doors to the poor and to refugees.  None of the three newspapers published my letter but the Examiner put part of it on their online edition.

My suggestion was not anti-religion or anti-church.  It was a practical proposal.  Many churches are only half full at weekends.  The Irish winter can be cold, bitter, wet, windy and dark - in other words miserable - not forgetting that hail, snow frost, thunder and lightning come when they will.  The plight of the homeless in Ireland, because of its prolonged and desolate winter can be unbearable especially for the weak.

The proposal is for all places of worship.  The largest Churches are Christian in Ireland.  The founder of the Christian church advised his then Jewish followers not to worship either on the Holy Mount or in the Temple.  He also advised them that when they wished to pray, not to do so openly but in secret.  That founder is respected in most religions including Islam but his teaching has been largely ignored.  It would be a good time to put his advice into practice.  His was a humane  teaching.  I cannot see him asking his followers to spare large comfortable buildings for worship when humans of every shade are in dire need of food and shelter.

I believe that the followers of most religions would respond positively to my suggestion.