RAF Cargo Containers at Shannon

On Saturday 5th Sept there were at least two containers marked as property of the RAF beside a chartered Omni Air International plane at Shannon. They sat amongst the other containers, most of which were marked as Omni Air cargo. But the labels were clear: they said Royal Air Force. In other words, it seems that British military cargo is being transported through Shannon.

One of the containers that sat near the Omni Air plane was marked "Property of RAF Brize Norton". RAF Brize Norton is the home of the RAF's strategic air transport (AT) and air-to-air refueling (AAR) forces. It is the most important British military base for maintaining the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan and is the main transport base for sending troops and supplies in and out of these occupied countries.

This raises further serious questions about Shannon's role in the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. What might an American civilian plane - that looks like it is carrying US troops - be doing with RAF containers? Is Ireland now part of the re-supply chain for all of the belligerent NATO forces around the world? And if so, is it being done with our government's approval or without it?

 In the past, activists who have attempted to take photographs of cargo being loaded onto Omni Air International planes at Shannon have been ordered by Gardai to leave the airport and threatened with arrest if they failed to do so. On last Saturday no attempts were made to forcibly remove the photographers from this part of the aerodrome (although they were being watched). Perhaps this was because of the prominent attendees at the nearby peace conference that included current and former MEPs, members of the Dutch and UK parliament, and other notable experts.



Pictures (c) Paula Geraghty

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