As 2016 draws to an end we'd like to wish you a peaceful and relaxing Christmas. And as we continue to step up our campaign to end Irish complicity in global militarisation and war in 2017, we look forward to your continued support.
Sadly it won't be a peaceful Christmas for the people living in or fleeing from war torn regions of the world. Imperialist interventions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Yemen, Syria and elsewhere have created and amplified conflicts that have had devasting consequences for millions of people. Here in Ireland our governments have supported the invasions and occupations that gave rise to al Qaeda; participated in the ever-increasing militarisation of the EU; facilitated torture by turning a blind eye to rendition planes landing at Shannon; and refused to investigate possible complicity in war crimes at the airport. At the same time the government is failing to provide safety and sanctuary to those fleeing from war, and refuses to take even its fair share of refugees.
As we look to 2017 there is a lot to be pessimistic about. There is no end in sight to the conflicts in the Middle East. Acts of terror are being committed all around the globe. And with the increased US military spending planned by Donald Trump, the world is even less likely to become a peaceful place. Indeed as the UN Security Council calls for an end to the building of settlements by Israel in the occupied Palestinian territory, Trump seems intent on the opposite. By actively supporting Israeli settlements he has shown his intention to promote colonisation and oppression instead of peace.
We encourage everyone to find constructive and imaginative ways to resist the escalation of violence, war, and oppression, and to work with us to end the US military use of Shannon. This is an essential first step towards the restoration of Irish neutrality and the promotion of justice, peace and human rights.
We oppose all human rights abuses, oppression and war crimes, regardless of who the perpetrator is, but since Ireland and Shannon are complicit in the abuses and crimes of the US our focus as an organisation is on ending that complicity. Our peace vigils at Shannon Airport on the second Sunday of every month will continue in 2017, starting with one on Jan 8th. Further peace actions will also be organised throughout the year, and we hope that some of you can join us for these.
Working together we can make the future more promising. We hope you have the opportunity to enjoy time with loved ones over the Christmas, and we look forward to your continued support in 2017.