Peace Activists Charged with Defacing a US Warplane at Shannon

Last night (April 25th) two peace activists, Edward Horgan, member of Veterans for Peace Ireland, and Dan Dowling entered Shannon Airport by route unknown, and went to the location on Taxiway 11 where two US Navy planes numbered 165836 and 165829 were parked. The warplanes were being protected by an Irish army patrol who were accompanied by a Garda. The peace activists managed to get as far as the aircraft, before they were seen by the Army patrol. It later transpired that someone, some person or persons unknown, had written the words DANGER DANGER DO NOT FLY on the engine of one of the warplanes. At about 10.50 pm after the peace activists had been discovered they were surrounded by Garda and airport Security patrol vehicles with blue flashing lights. One peace activist presented the Gardaí with a list entitled "List of children killed in Middle East related wars" containing 34 pages of the names of children from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Syria, Palestine/Israel, and Libya. This list is in the early stages of compiling but already contains almost 1000 names, a tiny fraction of the up to one million children who have died needlessly in the Middle East since the first Gulf War in 1991. The peace activists asked the Army personnel and Gardai who were in the area of the two warplanes to search and investigate these aircraft. They were then arrested, handcuffed and taken to Shannon Garda station. They were initially held for 6 hours, and this was then extended for a further 6 hours when they were charged as follows:

That "On the 25/04/2017 at Shannon airport, Shannon, Co Clare in the said district court area of Ennis, district no 12, did without lawful excuse damage property, to wit, deface a US Navy Aircraft therein with Graffiti belonging to US Navy intending to damage such property or being reckless as to whether such property would be damaged. Contrary to Section 2(1) Criminal Damage Act, 1991."

The peace activists were then taken to Ennis District Court, and after a short hearing both were released on bail, to appear at Ennis District Court again on 7th June 2017. This hearing will be "for mention" only and the trial itself is unlikely to take place for many months before coming to its conclusion.

In the meantime over the past 24 hours it is likely that several more children have been added to the list of children who have died as a result of these Middle Eastern wars, that are being refueled at Shannon airport on a daily basis.

Both of these warplanes took off from Shannon Airport this morning shortly after 10am, for some destination as yet unknown, with cargo and military personnel that are likely to be used in conflicts leading to the deaths of even more innocent children.

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