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The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Moveable Feast Cafe 2022/01/23 ? Open Thread Sun Jan 23, 2022 16:30 | herb
2022/01/23 16:30:01Welcome to the ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’. The ‘Moveable Feast’ is an open thread where readers can post wide ranging observations, articles, rants, off topic and have animate discussions of

offsite link What Next? Sun Jan 23, 2022 09:52 | amarynth
Tarik in the Vineyard for the Saker Blog I’m not sure even a NATO mosquito could cross the Russian border unmolested. And when a bear is lethally threatened, it doesn’t

offsite link An aftermath of Washington Post ? Zelensky interview Sat Jan 22, 2022 20:10 | The Saker
by Lilia Shumkova for the Saker blog On December 8, 2021, days before Russia presented to the U.S. its Draft of the proposed Treaty between The United States of America

offsite link Response to the US Department of State?s fact sheet: Facts vs. Fiction: Russian Disinformation on Uk... Sat Jan 22, 2022 18:05 | amarynth
From the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.  On January 20, @StateDept released a “fact sheet” (https://is.gd/QBgF3i) on the so-called Russian disinformation on Ukraine???? ?? Nothing written in

offsite link BBC HardTalk: Marandi on Vienna Nuclear Talks Sat Jan 22, 2022 09:38 | amarynth
University of Tehran Professor Seyed Mohammad Marandi explains the JCPOA, western sanctions against Iran and Iranians as well as Iran’s response to US military threats on BBC HardTalk. Ed Note: 

The Saker >>

Public Inquiry
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005

offsite link Irish media mote in the eye

offsite link King Hammurabi: Builders law Anthony

offsite link Michael Clifford: low standards in journalism Anthony

offsite link Are the wheels of justice creaking into action? Anthony

offsite link Middle class revolution Anthony

Public Inquiry >>

Human Rights in Ireland
A Blog About Human Rights

offsite link UN human rights chief calls for priority action ahead of climate summit Sat Oct 30, 2021 17:18 | Human Rights

offsite link 5 Year Anniversary Of Kem Ley?s Death Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:34 | Human Rights

offsite link Poor Living Conditions for Migrants in Southern Italy Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:14 | Human Rights

offsite link Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights

offsite link Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights

Human Rights in Ireland >>

Lockdown Skeptics

The Daily Sceptic

offsite link Coronavirus is Nowhere Near Endemic, Says WHO Tue Jan 11, 2022 15:46 | Will Jones
The coronavirus is "nowhere near" endemic, the World Health Organisation has said, while Pfizer's CEO says an Omicron vaccine is on its way and admits two doses no longer work. Some people don't want this to end.
The post Coronavirus is Nowhere Near Endemic, Says WHO appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link One in 12 Teachers Absent in First Week of Term as Class Sizes Reach 120 Tue Jan 11, 2022 13:24 | Will Jones
One in 12 teachers was absent from schools in England during the first week of term, according to the latest data, as some class sizes hit 120. Time to end mass testing?
The post One in 12 Teachers Absent in First Week of Term as Class Sizes Reach 120 appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Supreme Leader Nic Sturge-on Tells Scots They May Have to Wear Masks For Years Tue Jan 11, 2022 11:05 | Toby Young
People in Scotland may have to wear masks in public places for years to come, Nicola Sturgeon has warned. This is in spite of masked-up Scotland having a higher number of Covid cases per 100,000 than England.
The post Supreme Leader Nic Sturge-on Tells Scots They May Have to Wear Masks For Years appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link Some Healthcare Workers Have Pre-existing Immunity to Covid, Study Finds Tue Jan 11, 2022 08:58 | Noah Carl
Researchers identified a group of healthcare workers who did not become infected during the first wave. They found evidence of pre-existing T-cell immunity, suggesting that not everyone is equally susceptible to Covid.
The post Some Healthcare Workers Have Pre-existing Immunity to Covid, Study Finds appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link How?s He Going to Get Out of This One? Fresh Allegations Emerge That Boris Attended Drinks in the No... Tue Jan 11, 2022 07:00 | Will Jones
Fresh allegations have emerged that Boris Johnson attended a social gathering during the first lockdown, described in an email from his PPS as "socially distanced drinks in the No 10 garden... bring your own booze!?
The post How’s He Going to Get Out of This One? Fresh Allegations Emerge That Boris Attended Drinks in the No. 10 Garden During Lockdown appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

Lockdown Skeptics >>

America's Lap Dog: Ireland And The War In Afghanistan

category international | anti-war / imperialism | opinion/analysis author Monday November 22, 2021 17:00author by De Piorraíauthor email depiorrai at protonmail dot com Report this post to the editors

The Irish state has blood on its hands for its involvement in the War on Terror, read about it now!

I originally wrote this piece in September 2021 following the announcement by United States President Joe Biden that US forces would withdraw from Afghanistan, but never sought to publish the piece. The Irish Government is playing both sides on the matter of foreign affairs, calling for peace and claiming to be 'neutral' while actively supporting Western military imperialism. In this peice, I examine and criticise the involvement of Ireland in the Afghanistan War, with sources provided at the end.

I can be contacted at depiorrai@protonmail.com

The general attitude of the Irish political establishment can best described as two faced. Talk of care, compassion and a just society on one end while actions that hurt workers, communities, and society as a whole are enacted. On the matter of Afghanistan, it’s yet again the same old political shenanigans.

The world has been watching closely at the events unfolding in Afghanistan, as the Taliban has inevitably regained power following the recent end of the twenty year long Western occupation. In a statement on the 16th of August 2021, An Taoiseach Micheál Martin stated that the events have “taken many by surprise”, despite the fact that assessments by intelligence agencies warned that the Taliban takeover would occur. The Taoiseach also declared that Ireland would “participate fully” in international humanitarian efforts.

Since then, the Government has issued a further one hundred and fifty humanitarian visas on top of the previous forty five to Afghan citizens, as well as fast tracking one hundred and three family reunification applications. Deportations of Afghan citizens have been halted and the two hundred and thirty three people with pending deportation orders will have the opportunity to request their orders be revoked.4

The far-right have rushed to oppose this, blaming the housing crisis on refugees as opposed to crooked developers, unscrupulous landlords, vulture funds and the cycle of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael. The divisions the far-right seek to create, built on lies and racism, must be opposed. We owe it to these civilians and the international community to offer safety and refuge, not just because of our international human rights obligations nor the history of the Irish people fleeing persecution and poverty, but because the Irish state has and continues to play a role in the War on Terror.

Following the September 11th terrorist attacks, the Irish Government invited the United States to use Shannon Airport, with no end in sight for this toxic relationship. Shannonwatch, the campaign group that tracks and seeks an end to military use of Shannon Airport, reports that between 2001 and the end of May 2021, little under three million United States soldiers passed through Shannon Airport. These flights don’t require permits from the Minister for Transport but flights carrying munitions of war, both overflights and landings, do require permission. Between 2007 and 2020, 15,342 applications for permits were made to the respective Minister, with only 601 (3.9%) being rejected. It gets worse when you are made aware of the Irish state’s assistance in the extrajudicial capture and torture of terror suspects by allowing rendition flights through Shannon Airport, with the Government having suspected such prisoner transfers were taking place according to a leaked diplomatic cable from a meeting in December 2007 between the then-Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern and then-United States Ambassador for Ireland Thomas C. Foley.

For twenty years, the Irish state has been complicit in the occupations, torture and bombings as part of the War on Terror and for what, the blood of innocent civilians that are now on our hands. The ‘Cost of War’ project by the Brown University Institute of International and Public Affairs estimates that between October 2001 and October 2019, direct war deaths across Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen tallied in at 312,971 - 335,745 for civilians and 769,549 - 801,398 overall. These numbers do not take into account indirect deaths, such as deaths due to infrastructure damage, starvation, water shortages and disease, so the actual death toll is much higher. On top of that, across the aforementioned nations, plus Libya, the Philippines and Somalia, thirty seven million people have been displaced, their homes destroyed, livelihoods ruined and families broken apart. That is the cost of war and regardless of who’s innocent or guilty, a civilian or combatant, these are people who have all paid the price.

Unfortunately, foreign policy isn’t a high profile issue in Irish politics, with Brexit and the occasional European treaty referendum being the exceptions. In 2003, one hundred thousand people poured onto the streets of Dublin to oppose Bush and Blair’s invasion of Iraq, though the anti-war movement in Ireland has never been that large since. It’s about time to rebuild that mass movement, to remove the United States from Shannon Airport, to get an Irish withdrawal from PESCO and to oppose the triple lock imperialism of the United States, Britain and the European Union.

Sources:

1) Statement from the Taoiseach Micheál Martin on the situation in Afghanistan - 16th of August 2021
https://www.gov.ie/en/press-release/8405f-statement-from-an-taoiseach-micheal-martin-on-the-situation-in-afghanistan/

2) ‘A massive policy fail’: CIA warned White House of swift Taliban takeover - 18th of August 2021
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/aug/18/massive-policy-fail-cia-warned-taliban-takeover

3) 300 Afghan citizens expected to arrive in Ireland under Govt programmes - 18th of August 2021
https://www.rte.ie/news/ireland/2021/0817/1241236-ireland-afghanistan/

4) Afghan nationals in Ireland can request deportation orders to be revoked - 17th of August 2021
https://www.irishexaminer.com/news/arid-40361438.html

5) Military Use Of Shannon Airport - 2021
https://www.shannonwatch.org/Military

6) US 'rendition flight' aircraft flew to Shannon airport - 1st of September 2011
https://www.thejournal.ie/us-rendition-flight-aircraft-flew-to-shannon-airport-215372-Sep2011/

7) Ireland suspected Shannon had carried prisoners: the WikiLeak in full - 17th of December 2010
https://www.https://www.thejournal.ie/ireland-suspected-shannon-had-carried-prisoners-the-wikileak-in-full-2010-12/.org/Military

8) Human Cost of Post - 9/11 Wars: Direct War Deaths in Major War Zones - 13th of November 2019
https://watson.brown.edu/costsofwar/figures/2019/direct-war-death-toll-2001-801000

9) Creating Refugees: Displacement Caused by the United States’ Post-9/11 Wars - 21st of September 2020
https://watson.brown.edu/costsofwar/papers/summary

10) 100,000 March Against War In Iraq - 15th of February 2013
https://www.rte.ie/archives/2013/0215/367908-10-years-ago-today-protest-against-iraq-war

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