Easter Vigil 11th April 2009 - While Irish Army and Police Protect US Warplanes Inside the Airport

About 27 people attended an Easter Peace Vigil at Shannon airport. Seven were peace activists, from Shannon, Limerick, Galway, Dublin and Cork, and the remainder were Gardai and airport police. Within the airport fence a US Hercules C 130 warplane was being protected by a unit of the Irish army, and an Omni Air chartered US troopcarrier was also parked in the centre of the aerodrome.

Ireland's complicity in the Iraq and Afghan wars continues at Shannon airport in spite of the collapse of the poxy Celtic Tiger economy. Garda overtime accross the country has been severly cut back, but not apparently at Shannon airport, or at the Shell toSea protests in Mayo. Seven peace activists were "policed" by about 20 Gardai and airport police. The policing security operation was not very efficient. Anti-riot barriers provided by a private company at taxpayers expense arrive too late to be put in place. Several determined peace activists got beyond the rather wobbly police line. Several Gardai refused to say under what Irish legislation they were trying to prevent the peace activists from proceeding along a public road. The Garda Sergeant present took out his notebook and asked a number of the peace acticists their names. He seemed surprised when they declined to cooperate with his "intelligence gathering"activities. He cited the Air Transport Navigation Act as his reason for preventing them from walking along a public highway, but it was unclear how this act could apply on a public highway that was not legally part of "Shannon Aerodrome".

Meanwhile, in Iraq and Afghanistan, the decisions by new US President Barack Hussein Obama to close Guantanamo prison, outlaw torture by CIA and other US agents, and possibly close some of the other black site torture prisons in Europe and elsewhere is being welcomed.

However, these belated moves will not bring back the over one million Iraqi and Afghan dead, or undo the trauma of torture and the suffering of the injured, and the trauma of the relatives of the dead.

Our Irish Government, and the Gardai Siochana have been willing and knowing participants in these crimes against humanity.

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