shannonwatch's blog

We need Irish version of Chilcot

Letter from Edward Horgan of Shannonwatch, printed in today's Irish Examiner.

During the month of June, while Nato exercises were taking place in Poland, I photographed a large number of US military aircraft at Shannon airport, including mid-air refuelling aircraft, whose only purpose is to refuel other military aircraft in mid-air. On July 12, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Charlie Flanagan TD gave a written reply to Clare Daly TD, who had asked the Minister "to ascertain from the United States Government if any of the US military aircraft that transited through Shannon Airport during the month of June 2016, were involved in any capacity, in supporting military exercises in Poland or elsewhere." Minister Flanagan replied as follows: "The US Embassy has reconfirmed details which it had provided previously in relation to the aircraft that transited through Shannon Airport last month. The Embassy has reconfirmed that the aircraft were unarmed, carried no arms, ammunition or explosives and did not engage in intelligence gathering. The Embassy further reconfirmed that the aircraft were not part of a military operation or exercise. Permission for landings by these aircraft was granted subject to these conditions."

Aircraft Linked to Renditions Back at Shannon

Shannon Airport has seen plenty of torture planes come and go - none of which were investigated by the authorities. Today (July 1st) one of them was back, although of course we don't know why it was there. We just know it was at US military facilities in Maryland and Alaska in the days before its arrival at Shannon this morning at 9.43am.

A Call For Action in Warsaw during the NATO Summit (8-10 July 2016)

(From the No to War - No to NATO network, http://www.no-to-nato.org/)

The next NATO summit is planned to take place in Warsaw on 8-9 July. This summit will be held during a period of wars, heightened global instability and conflict. The wars raged by the West in the Middle East and Afghanistan have left hundreds of thousands dead; destroyed these countries' infrastructure and ruined the conditions for political stability and social peace. The terrorism that has spread around the world is a terrible legacy of these conflicts.

Millions of refugees have been forced to flee their homes in search of a safe place for them and their families to live. And when they reach the shores of Europe and the USA, they often meet hostility and racism from those very countries that started the wars from which they are escaping.

The Crippling Effects of Plutonium Poisoning - It could Happen in Ireland

Some people may wonder why we have been focusing on the unusual number of US military mid air refuelling planes landing and taking off at Shannon Airport over the past two weeks. These planes or the planes they are refuelling never crash do they?? Well actually they do. A report in today's New York Times focuses on former US soldiers who are now suffering from cancers after being used to clean up radioactive contaminated materials after two separate accidents involving US B52 bombers carrying nuclear bombs, one in Spain and the other in Greenland. Of course we are told that the US military planes landing at Shannon and overflying through Irish airspace never carry nuclear weapons, and never even carry weapons or munitiions of any sort, and are not on military operations or military exercises!! But this is almost certainly not true.

Is Ireland supporting NATO exercises in Eastern Europe?

Shannonwatch have recorded an unusual number of US military aircraft at and overflying Shannon Airport since June 4th. This time period coincides with the preparations for NATO Anaconda-2016 military exercises in Poland which are being conducted from June 7th to 17th. (See list below)

US Air Force Special Ops "Resting" At Shannon

On Wednesday June 1st a US Air Force Dornier C-146A Wolfhound, 11-3075, sat on the tarmac at Shannon Airport being watched carefully by an Irish army patrol. It had come from Grand Canaria - Las Palmas in Spain, and on Thursday it travelled on to St John's Newfoundland.  Its call sign was REACH1042.

The aircraft is operated by the US Air Force 524th Special Operations Squadron which is part of the 27th Special Operations Wing. This Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) unit flies a fleet of non-standard transport aircraft in support of special operations. Their missions, which are typically covert, include insertion, extraction and resupply of special operations forces.