International Conference Delegates Protest at US Military Use of Shannon Airport

From November 16th to 18th a historic conference was held at Liberty Hall in Dublin. It was the first International Conference Against US/NATO Military Bases, hosted by the Peace and Neutrality Alliance (PANA). It was attended by delegates from 35 countries who came together to debate issues relevant to their own country and to the world.

The conference was mindful of the fact that Shannon Airport, located on the other side of the country, is a de facto US military base. Close to three million US troops and their weapons have passed through the airport since 2002 on their way to and from wars in the Middle East. On Monday November 19th several of the delegates visited Shannon and staged an impromptu protest against the US military use of the airport.

Three Warplanes at Shannon

There were at least three US warplanes at Shannon Airport today, possibly carrying up to 1,000 armed US troops through Ireland. These planes with weapons and soldiers on board, sat alongside normal civilian aircraft at the terminal building.

Court report: DPP V Horgan and Dowling

Report from the Court

Today saw another hearing, this time in Court 5, Dublin Circuit Court - Judge Melanie Greally presiding - in a case involving peace activists Edward Horgan and Dan Dowling.  The case relates to the alleged writing of some graffiti (DANGER DANGER DO NOT FLY) on a US war-plane at Shannon Airport on 25 September 2017, and a charge of trespass relating to the same incident which the Ennis District Court has arguably being trying to hold in reserve (or park as they describe it) so that if we are acquitted in the Circuit Court they might have second go at us in the lower District Court.

US Military Transport Aircraft Flew Shannon to Israel and Back

On October 30th a US military C-17A Globemaster III transport aircraft, registration 09-9212, passed through Shannon Airport on its way to Israel from the US.  It was travelling from Washington DC.

Five days later, on November 4th, it flew back from Tel Aviv in Israel. Once again it landed at Shannon before proceeding on to the US.

The Phantom Kalitta Boeing 747 - No Official Record of it Landing at Shannon

On the 11th of this month we reported that at least seven planes on contract to the US military were refueled at Shannon Airport. Six of these were Omni Air International planes - these are the carrier contracted to take US troops and their weapons to and from war zones in the Middle East.

The other was a Kalitta Air Boeing 747-4B5(F) with registration N710CK that flew in from Bagram in Afghanistan the previous day (October 9th).

In answer to a parliamentary question from Clare Daly TD, the Minister for Transport; Tourism and Sport said that Shannon Airport has confirmed that five aircraft, registration numbers N207AX, N342AX, N351AX, N477AX and N819AX, landed in Shannon Airport on the 10th of October 2018.

He went on to say that Shannon Airport has no records of aircraft with the registration number N710CK being in Shannon Airport on that day.

But we have a photograph of the plane at Shannon, taken at 12:47 PM that day.

North Carolina Torture Report - a Timely Reminder that Investigation of Rendition Flights is Still Needed at Shannon

On September 27th, the North Carolina Commission of Inquiry on Torture (NCCIT) released a ground breaking report on North Carolina's involvement in the CIA torture program. The Commission which was made up of policy experts, academics, and community leaders was doing a job their government refuses to do, which is to investigate North Carolina's involvement in the US torture program and prevent it from happening again.

The report begins as follows:

In the years following 9/11, North Carolina was used as a staging ground to launch flights that picked up suspected terrorists abroad and transported them to CIA "black sites" and third-party countries where they were illegally detained and tortured. Declassified documents and news reports have confirmed that the CIA front company Aero Contractors, which is headquartered in the state, used North Carolina's aviation infrastructure and public airports to launch these "torture taxi" flights in support of the United States' Rendition, Detention and Interrogation (RDI) program.