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Shannon, Torture, Troops, and Timebombs

category clare | anti-war / imperialism | feature author Friday December 02, 2005 00:01author by Tim Hourigan - Cosantoiri Siochanaauthor phone 0879777703 Report this post to the editors

Shannon secrecy still in force.

pictureLast week a German documentary team was at Shannon as part of a program on CIA renditions. After seeing troops and cops, and doing interviews with planespotters, they also got to see the Gardai chasing the plane spotters around the airport.

Today, as Dermot Ahern is seeking assurances from Condeleeza Rice that the CIA is not using Shannon for torture, a USMIL a/c with hazardous cargo landed at SNN prompting an evacuation of parts of the airport and neighbouring industrial estate according to Clare FM.

Previous reports from Tim Hourigan
which include the Swedish documentary that matched his plane spottings in Shannon to the world wide evidence of US torture renditions. This caused a Scandal in Sweden and Spain.

Access all Indymedia Anti-War stories at http://www.indymedia.ie/antiwar

On Thursday and Friday of last week, three of the Shannon Planespotters, Conor, Ed and Tim were out at Shannon keeping an eye on things, but also meeting a documentary team from Germany.

The German crew are making a program about CIA "extraordinary renditions" - the snatch missions using the Guantanamo Bay Express and other torture jets. We spoke to the journalists, and showed them around the airport, and noticed a suspicious aircraft which Ed [Horgan] reported to the Garda Siochana.

On Friday, we showed them a bit of how we monitor the flights, and we brought them around the back of the airport while we waited for a US military flight to land. We saw an ATA Boeing 757 land and taxi to Gate 42 at the passenger terminal (Gate 42 is fenced off for the US military).

pictureWe got photographs of troops in desert uniforms, while we displayed banners in the car park ( "CIA TORTURERS OUT OF SHANNON" "US MILITARY OUT OF SHANNON"). The troops didn't even seem that surprised to see us there. They were mostly young men aged about 18-20, who stopped to read the signs, and waved at us as we waved at them (I think they understood we didn't mean anything personal, but were aiming our message at the Irish and US governments).

After the troops had all moved to the duty free area, we went to photograph the aircraft (the German crew filmed it also). We could see a Garda standing there, but they didn't notice us for a while, until we were getting ready to go, and they got a bit overexcited when they realised we'd been taking photos. The TV crew kept going, having been told of previous illegal camera snatches by Gardai at the airport.

Three Gardai started running towards us, but couldn't go very far due to the fences. One was wearing a ski mask. Another did most of the talking:

Garda: "C'mere.... C'MERE...Hey you C'MERE!!!"

TH: "What d''you mean come there? There's two fences between us. What do you want anyway?"

Garda: "What are you doing here? You're not supposed to be here. Aren't you banned?"

TH: "I'm in a public place Garda. How do you mean banned? I don't think so. But even if I was, it would be a matter between me and Aer Rianta, it's a civil matter from the High Court injunction. The Garda Siochana needn't concern themselves."

Garda: "And who do you think enforces the High Court injunctions?"

TH: "That's only if there's been a court order, which there hasn't Garda. I'm in a public place on lawful business."

Garda: "Taking photos of planes is not lawful business"

TH: "How is it not lawful? It's gathering evidence of a crime."

Garda: "Under the Air Transport Navigation Act, I'm requesting you to leave."

TH: "I was already leaving when you called me, but anyway, have a nice day."

Garda: "What?"

TH: "I said have a nice day Garda."

After that Ed and I started to cross the carpark, heading back to the hotel where the TV crew was staying. We noticed a Garda Squad car rushing around inside the airfield, having to take the long way around to get out.

As we got to the hotel, the squad car sped into the hotel car park, and Gardai jumped out, shouting for us to stop. We delayed our compliance by about 5 feet until we were inside the hotel reception (just in case anyone was temped to snatch any cameras in the absence of witnesses).

The Garda asked our names, which we gave, and the Garda gave his name. After that we had a cup of tea, while we waited for our guests to return to pick up the radio mic I was wearing. Conor spoke to the Garda outside, and after we bade farewell to our visiting journos, we left, escorted by the Gardai.

Today our Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dermot Ahern is meeting Condi Rice, US Secretary of State, to ask for another assurance that the CIA is not using Shannon to transport people to places of torture. While refusing to have any of the CIA planes inspected, the [Irish] government line has been that the assurances of a friendly nation are good enough. (Then why are we asking for another one?)

The Council of Europe, and the European Commission have both started investigating reports of CIA prisons in Europe (allegedly in Poland and Romania), while the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights is believed to have made formal contact with the Irish Government this week about CIA landings in Ireland.

In an alarming development for safety at Shannon airport and town parts of the industrial estate, as well as the airport, were evacuated for an emergency landing of a USAF C-17 Globemaster carrying 'hazardous material'. The aircraft, part of the 446th Airlift Wing, based at McChord Air Force Base in Washington State was heading East, first landing in Kansas, and routing for RAF Mildenhall in England when it developed problems with its hydraulic system and diverted to Shannon, advising the ground that it was carrying 'hazardous material'. It landed at 8.15 and was moved to the middle of the airfield, where smoke was spotted coming from the right wing.

According to CLARE FM's report ( http://www.clarefm.ie/news/index.htm#1

Over 400 employees from the West side of the Shannon Industrial State were evacuated amid reports the aircraft was transporting hazardous material. The C17 aircraft is capable of carrying up to 169,000lbs of cargo, including tanks, Apache helicopters , artillery, and weapons such as the Patriot Missile System.

It was further reported that the coastguard was advised that if the aircraft was forced to land off the runway at Shannon, the crew would ditch it Shannon Estuary. (The concern being that if all the hydraulic fluid leaked out, that the brakes wouldn't work well enough to stop the plane on a 2 mile runway).

Conor Cregan and Ed Horgan took photos of the plane and made complaints to Shannon Garda demanding that the cargo be confiscated before it could be used to kill and maim innocent people in Iraq.

Photos and updates from other planespotters to follow.

author by Newshoundpublication date Thu Dec 01, 2005 18:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

CIA in the firing line

EU nations 'could lose voting rights over CIA prisons'
The European Commission has warned all EU member states that they could have their voting rights suspended if they are found to have operated secret CIA prisons.


author by Conorpublication date Thu Dec 01, 2005 19:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The first three photos were taken last week and the rest today.

US Troops Heading 4 Iraq via Shannon
US Troops Heading 4 Iraq via Shannon





author by Conorpublication date Thu Dec 01, 2005 19:24author address author phone Report this post to the editors




author by Aronpublication date Thu Dec 01, 2005 20:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I quit

author by Davros - The Dalekspublication date Thu Dec 01, 2005 20:37author address Skaroauthor phone Report this post to the editors

Have you any news on the emergency landing of a U.S. military aircraft at Shannon today? It is reported that due to "hazardous materials" being on board the aircraft the entire airport and surrounding areas had to be evacuated.

author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 01:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Here's the game:

First one to find a reference on Indymedia, with link and date, to the first report or question that was raised here about these CIA 'Rendition' planes coming through Ireland wins a bottle of Hungarian Wine (not sure how I'll get it to you tho.)

Point is, Indy .ie [because of people like Tim, Ed and Conor etc] after following a paragraph of a report in ___?___ (cant remember the name now) started sleuthing this obscure story while the Irish Times, RTÉ, Indo and so on were busy regurgitating US State Dept Press Releases.

Connections to connections happened and now this is a story all over Europe.

A few weeks ago Hungary was acting superior thinking that its regional rival Romainia had these CIA Gulags. Right now Hungary is afraid that one of these Gulags may have been in Hungary - no confirmation one way or the other, yet.

The ruling coalition govt led by the Socialists (that's the 'reformed' Commie-Stalinist Socialist Workers Party) is afraid that the public may think the stench and the blood of the CIA may be on its hands.

The last thing that former Stalinists want is to be identified as allies of George W Bush - because everyone knows here that the Socialist Party in Hungary LOVES George W Bush. [Im not making this shit up, its surreal]

If the CIA Gulag accusation is true, the Socialists could lose the next election - too many people here were tortured by the fathers of these 'reformed' Stalinists, and being CIA-Stalinists might just make people not vote for them.

Back to my drunken point - thanks to the people listed above, few would have ever known about this and most certainly the media would have never noticed or cared.

Jus' one of those 'conspiracy theories' ya know?

And how did they get this noticed?


author by eeeekkkkkpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 02:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors


are they counting ones thru erron?

author by eeekkkkpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 02:45author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Shannon not used for CIA flights, says US secretary

US: Shannon airport has never been used for CIA rendition flights, US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice has told Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern.

Mr Ahern said in Washington yesterday that he accepted Dr Rice's assurance, which had confirmed what US officials had told the Government consistently.

"She was very categorical that Shannon has not been used for anything untoward. We fully accept the categorical assurance of a friendly nation," Mr Ahern said.

During what officials called a "forthright" exchange, Dr Rice told the Minister that the United States was not a rogue state and upheld US and international law.

She would make a statement on allegations that the CIA has run secret prisons when she visits Europe next week.

The New York Times reported yesterday that 26 aircraft "known to be operated by CIA companies" flew 307 flights in Europe since September 2001, including 33 in Ireland. Only Germany and Britain, with 94 and 76 flights respectively, hosted more CIA flights than Ireland.

The paper said its information came "from Federal Aviation Administration data, aviation industry sources and, to a lesser extent, a network of plane spotters who often report to human rights groups".

British foreign secretary Jack Straw has written to Dr Rice on behalf of the European Union, asking her to explain media reports about secret CIA prisons - including two allegedly sited in Poland and Romania - and the secret transfer across the Continent of suspects to foreign states for interrogation, a process known as rendition. The US has sent some prisoners to countries such as Egypt that are known to practise torture.

Washington has neither confirmed nor denied the existence of secret prisons, prompting Dutch foreign minister Ben Bot to warn that his country could reconsider its 1,100-strong military presence in Afghanistan if the Americans "continue to beat around the bush" on the issue.

A number of European countries have begun inquiries into allegations that their airports were used for rendition flights, but the Government has consistently said it has no evidence that such flights have used Irish airports.

According to the New York Times, Portugal hosted 16 CIA flights, Spain and the Czech Republic 15 each, Greece and Cyprus 13 each, Poland six, Italy five, Romania and Iceland four each, Switzerland three, France and Turkey two each, and Sweden, Estonia, Hungary, Malta, Croatia and the Netherlands one each.

***(one flight thru sweden - kidnapped ppl on it)***
***(33 thru ireland - coke and crisps?)***

Related Link: http://ireland.com
author by karl roenfanz ( rosey )publication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 06:59author email k_rosey48 at hotmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

the u.s. government, ( rice, bush and other once growing things ) have lied so often to the american people and the rest of the world, how can anyone believe them?

author by nmpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 08:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The US Embassy has confirmed that a US military aircraft, which made an emergency landing at Shannon Airport this morning, was carrying helium gas bound for Iraq.

The C-17 transport plane had to divert to Shannon airport when it developed hydraulic and brake problems.

The gas is contained in 58 cylinders onboard the plane and is used to float radar balloons for the military.

A spokesperson for the US embassy stated the cargo and flight were not in contravention of any UN resolutions.

Related Link: http://www.rte.ie/news/2005/1201/shannon.html
author by anonpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Irish Foreign Minister Dermot Ahern met Rice, who will visit Europe next week, and said she had repeated assurances by U.S. diplomats that Ireland's airport hub at Shannon had not been used for renditions.

"She confirmed that they were correct and that was their position in relation to the use, or non-use, of Shannon," Ahern told reporters after the meeting.

"It is fair to say that she very clearly said that the U.S. has not infringed international law in relation to human rights," he added.

But in a sign the United States will go increasingly on the offensive to combat European pressure over detainee scandals that have strained transatlantic ties, Rice made clear she wanted allies to back off and trust the United States.

A senior State Department official, who requested anonymity because he was relating a private conversation, said Rice pointedly did not make the assurance personal to Ahern because her message was: "You've gotten those assurances from the (U.S.) ambassador (to Ireland). You should have confidence in that."

Ahern also said Rice expected "others to believe that they would not ask American citizens to abuse human rights."

He said he accepted the U.S. assurances but offered to investigate any evidence of renditions and warned his government would "take action" if there were any.

Rice often transits on her own foreign trips through Shannon. Hundreds of planes carrying U.S. troops to and from Iraq have also refueled there stirring controversy in traditionally neutral Ireland.Media reports say dozens of other U.S.-run flights have used the airport for unexplained reasons, raising speculation they could be transporting militant suspects.

Related Link

All smiles. You do what we say Mr Ahern (Reuters).
All smiles. You do what we say Mr Ahern (Reuters).

author by Tpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

That's gas alright! Are they trying to claim it was the Helium that was the hazardous material?

Helium as anyone knows is not a hazardous material. It's an inert gas and even if it did leak, being the second lightest gas would immediately float upwards.

I'd say the reason for the evacuation over such a wide area is because they afraid the bombs and missiles on board could be accidently detonated.

author by Newshoundpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The US embassy has "confirmed" that it was Helium.... not "claimed"... but "confirmed".

Perhaps the confusion is because the abbreviation for Helium is "He" while the abbreviation "H.E." stands for High Explosives?

RTE had nothing on this yesterday while it was all over Clare FM and Limerick Live 95 and a few other local stations.
They put up a big story about a stewardess who hurt her ankle during an evacuation of an Aer Lingus flight in Dublin, meanwhile Shannon Airport and half the industrial Estate was being cleared at 8am in case this plane crashed and exploded.

RTE also parrots the official line on the CIA flights, unquestioningly giving legitimacy to the "it's not happening here" rhetoric of the FF/PD government.

Refuse to

Ring RTE newsdesk to complain. 01- 2082177

Shannon Planespotters have sent text alerts this morning detailing how 4 US military flights left Shannon between 09:15 and 09:30 , didn't get details of first one, next two were ATA troop flights, last one was World Airways, (using call sign Reach 807, heading East)

You wouldn't get this from Brian Dobson!

author by Numbercruncherpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

NY Times says 33 CIA flights used Shannon in past three years.
Sure even the Dept of Transport has admitted to more than that, with the GulfStream N379P making about 20, and the larger one N313P making about the same, not to mention N6161Q, N85VM, etc...
At least 85 landings have been identified through flight logs and other methods. RTE research and editing falling short of the mark as usual.

author by Michaelpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 12:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Great work Tim, Conor, Ed, and whoever else was involved.

Ireland may be in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights. The Secretary General of the Council of Europe sent a formal request under Article 52 of that Convention for information from all High Contracting Parties (that includes Ireland) about the CIA illegal detention and "rendition flights" in Europe.

The Letter demands to know: "the manner in which their internal law ensures that acts by officials of foreign agencies within their jurisdiction are subject to adequate controls". (See link below)

The word "controls" is the most important one for us, because the Irish government have stated that their policy is strictly NOT to run any controls.

Thanks to the work of the Irish state media and respectable journalism, this scandal has gone almost unnoticed by the wider public and internationally.

German magazine, Der Spiegel, have been covering the CIA torture in Europe story in great detail, but Ireland never shows up on the radar: http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/0,1518,387802,00.html

In a week from today Ms. Justice Macken is due to finally return a verdict in the judicial review concerning foreign military overflights and refueling (Eoin Dubsky v Gov. of Ireland). The issue of "controls" may play a pivotal role.

Related Link: http://press.coe.int/cp/2005/636a
author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 13:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Flight Logs Reveal Hundreds of CIA Flights to Europe: Report
By Agence France Presse

More than 300 CIA flights have landed at European airports, a British newspaper said, adding a new element to claims that Washington has been transporting terrorist suspects to secret prisons in Europe.

The Guardian daily said it had seen flight logs documenting the flights by 26 planes operated by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).


France was only visited twice and Austria not at all, the newspaper said.


-- -- --

» 300 CIA flights, yet miraculously NONE of them had kidnapped people aboard! Ok, that's believable.

NOTE: Why was Austria not visited by these CIA 'Rendition' planes? Because Austria is neutral.

Why has Ireland been visited by these CIA 'Rendition' planes? Because Ireland is ___?___.

Fill in the blank, please.

author by Eoin Dubskypublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 13:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

My mum told me to always look for the world "shall" in a law, and to be wary of that weasel word "may". The European Convention on Human Rights, which is part of Irish law now too, requires the state to secure rights and freedoms for everyone within the country. Everyone, alleged CIA torture victims in aircraft refueling at Shannon included.

Below is the text of an email I just sent to the Irish ambassador to France. I'll let you know what she says.

Her Excellency Anne Anderson
Embassy of Ireland
4 Rue Rude
75116 Paris

Ms. Ambassador,

I am writing to inquire how, as a High Contracting Party to the European Convention on Human Rights, the Irish state "shall" secure to everyone in Ireland protection from torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment, when foreign military aircraft, and aircraft under the control of foreign military and intelligence agencies, are allowed pass through Shannon Airport without inspection.

Is it the Government's view that in order to fulfil it's duty in this regard (Section I, Article 3 of the Convention) -- i.e. to "secure" for people in Ireland the right not to be tortured -- it is sufficient to rely upon the word of American diplomats and officials, and that no further investigation or monitoring of alleged CIA flights is necessary?

I ask you to please reply to me in writing either at this email address or at my postal address here in Paris at your earliest convenience.

Yours sincerely,

Eoin Dubsky

14 rue des petits hotels
75010 Paris

author by Insurrectionpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 13:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Perhaps it's time for a whip around to get mr. Hourigan a camera with better zoom facilities and maybe some webspace where high resolution pictures can be stored.

Keep up your hard work.


author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Five minutes of Googling led me to the article in the New York Times that says these CIA 'Rendition' planes landed in Ireland.

When do I get paid for this?

OK, here you are Irish Times & RTÉ....

• from the NYTimes.com
'A recent analysis done for The New York Times of 26 planes known to be operated by C.I.A. companies shows 307 flights in Europe since September 2001. The information was culled from Federal Aviation Administration data, aviation industry sources and, to a lesser extent, a network of plane spotters who often report to human rights groups.

It finds that there were 94 flights in Germany, the most in Europe. (An investigation has opened there on whether Mr. Nasr, the suspect seized in Italy, was flown out of an American air base in Germany.) Second is Britain, 76 flights, followed by Ireland (33), Portugal (16), then Spain and the Czech Republic (15 each).'

•Short URL to the NYTimes.com article

author by anonpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 14:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Noticed this today this morning Austria has allowed overflights atleast. http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/english/doc/2005-11/25/content_497942.htm

"On Wednesday, Austria's air force commander said a CIA transport plane suspected of carrying terrorist suspects flew over the country on its way to the Central Asian nation of Azerbaijan on Jan. 21, 2003.

Josef Cap, the parliament floor leader for the Social Democrats, the biggest opposition party, demanded Thursday that Chancellor Wolfgang Schuessel lodge a formal protest with US President Bush. Schuessel is to visit the White House on Dec. 8. "

--Pat Breen who was at the Council of Europe meeting was on Clare FM this morning, he said he was told there that sometimes the CIA acts without knowledge of the government. He released this statement I guess one can't complain when politicians start posturing on this issue. http://www.patbreen.net/pbreen/asp/section.asp?s=446
“In addition, there may be a case for Irish aviation law to be reviewed so that foreign agencies within Ireland’s jurisdiction are subject to more stringent controls. There is may also be an issue of whether there were flights across Irish airspace of planes containing illegally abducted detainees.

--Minister T Goleen had to pushed to recognised that the planes were logged here, but said that doesn't mean there were prisoners onboard at the time they were in Ireland.

--interestingy from http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/12/01/news/cia.php
John Sifton, a researcher for Human Rights Watch, which has released a list of 26 "ghost detainees" held by the US without access to lawyers, said probably only a few of the 307 flights involved moving prisoners. Most, he said, were likely transferring CIA personnel. "It's impossible to know for sure how many are innocent," he said.

--IMHO flights transporting CIA agents engaged in black actions should not be allowed fly through Ireland either.

Continent's leaders face demands over just what they knew http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/12/01/news/cia.php

"Someone knew," said Daria Pesce, the lawyer for a former CIA station chief in Milan who was one of 22 Americans formally charged in the kidnapping of an Islamic militant taken from there to Egypt in 2003. "I don't think that it is possible that an American comes into Italy and kidnaps someone. It seems really unlikely."

--Don't forget the mercenaries in US army uniforms

author by tom eilepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 16:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Regarding Tim's bottle of wine - I raised the question about the flights in sept 2004 after reading Seymour Hersh in the Guardian .
torture plane tracked to Ireland
by tom Thursday, Sep 16 2004, 3:23pm

The plane -spotters were well ahead of me ,but I don't know whether they had actually posted on the subject previously. I had mentioned the possibility of Guatanamo-bound flights before on a thread which discussed the usefulness of holding demos in Shannon ,but I can't find it now .

author by Dr. Coilín ÓhAiseadhapublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 16:17author address Máigh Nuad, Co. Cill Dara.author phone Report this post to the editors

Hi, Tim.

From Insurrection's comments, I can see that I'm not the only one who would like to make a cash donation to cover the capital and running expenses of your invaluable efforts to monitor movements of troops and of the torture shuttle.

Can you provide us with details such as account name and address for cheques, and bank details for international transfers?

Zoom lens, extra cameras to record harrassment, maybe even cheap video cameras, Web space, transport costs ... make a budget and post an appeal here on indymedia?


author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 16:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Eeekkkk provided a link to the first feature on this subject.
But I don't think this was the first reference on indymedia.ie

'raised the question about the flights in sept 2004'

This may be the first reference - but in order to claim the wine - you have to provide a link ;-)

Tokaji Wine (tastey stuff!)
Tokaji Wine (tastey stuff!)

author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 16:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

that's dated Sep 16 2004 - more than a year ago the news was on Indymedia.ie.

Tom, the wine is yours - unless someone can find an earlier reference?

More info about the prize:

author by seedotpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 17:03author address author phone Report this post to the editors

But following the links gets earlier mentions. The link below has the Jan. 2003 mention of the N379P plane while the comments have mention in May 2004 about this plane being used in renditions.

This follows the standard pattern of Indy being 12 - 18 months ahead of the rest of the media on these matters ;-)

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/newswire.php?story_id=26231
author by ...publication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 19:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

stop patting yourselves on the back and starting planning A mass demo down there

author by eeekkkkkkpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 21:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Irish publication in SBP initially but thought they did a softly softly approach - then wrote that feature to fill in what he felt they left out.

the number of THAT plane was published beforehand in list linked to from feature but it was buried in a list of dozens and dozens of flights and tim dodn't know the significance till later

I was actually sitting beside him with a video camera as he typed in and printed out that list in peace house and definitely he didn't know then as he certainly would have filled me in

think I'm still due that vino

author by eeekkkkkkpublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 21:39author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I guess there may be ref to feenix earlier in archive somewhere
I'll bate you yet tom eile

author by Edward Horgan - Peace and Neutrality Alliancepublication date Fri Dec 02, 2005 23:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Several people have requested how they can contribute to the Shannon international peace process, especially the monitoring and reporting of the abuse of Shannon airport by US military and CIA. Here are few ideas, but don’t forget, this is your world also, and that one Iraqi child is just as precious as an Irish child. We live in one world, and there should be no “them” in the search for peace and justice.

We need the following at Shannon to help us to continue to expose breaches of international and Irish laws:
· People to spend time at Shannon and monitor what is going on, and publish what they see and hear on indymedia and elsewhere.
· We need information, especially on the times and dates when prisoners were transported on US aircraft through Shannon. We now believe that some prisoners were transported through Shannon. We don’t yet know the time and dates.
· Anyone passing through Shannon by air, or passing close by on road should call to the airport and observe what is going on, and take photos whenever possible.
· We need funds for two purposes, essential equipment, and towards a defence fund to pay legal costs of peace activists. So far all the costs of monitoring, which are very considerable have been borne by the individual peace activists. The time costs are incalculable.
· Most of all at present we need additional people monitors, anytime, to take some of the workload off the few existing activists.
· We also need individuals from all over to continually contact the media, and write letters to the papers about the Shannon issue.
· We also need researchers to collate all the information gathered so far. This includes details of all US troops, munitions, flights chartered to US military, and US military aircraft, that have passed through Shannon and/or through Irish airspace. Very important in the short term is collation of all information on CIA Flights. A further requirement is to list all the contradictions, misinformation and lies that have come from Irish Government sources.
· Please lodge formal complaints with Gardai at Shannon Garda station and at Garda headquarters in Dublin, concerning any US military aircraft or US troops you see passing through Ireland, and request that any US soldiers on Irish soil be arrested under the Hague Convention on Neutrality.

Our primary objectives are to promote justice, and prevent unlawful killings, either by states, dictators or individual terrorists. Our methods are to uphold and improve the rule of law and to hold those who abuse the rule of law to account. We oppose all violence against all people.

Please, don’t forget that while the ‘rendition’ and torture of prisoners is very serious, the killing of over 100,000 people in Iraq is far more serious.

One account to which financial help may be sent is: Ulster Bank, 95 O’Connell St., Limerick, Bank sort Code, 986020, account number 50400007, account name: E Horgan,
international sort code IBAN, IE45ULSB98602050400007,

but please, give us your time especially, as this is more valuable. We have achieved a lot with no funds, apart from personal expenditure, and will continue to do so.

If enough Germans had challenged the Nazis the Holocaust could not have happened.

author by peacenik - Cosanteoiri Siochanapublication date Sat Dec 03, 2005 00:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Rice to warn Europe to back off over detainees
Friday, 02 December, 2005

Click for full picture

By Saul Hudson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to give allies in Europe a response next week to their pressure over Washington's treatment of terrorism suspects: back off.

For almost a month, the United States has been on the defensive, refusing to deny or confirm media reports the United States has held prisoners in secret in Eastern Europe and transported detainees incommunicado across the continent.

The European Union has demanded that Washington address the allegations to allay fears of illegal U.S. practices. The concerns are rampant in among the European public and parliaments, already critical of U.S. prisoner-abuse scandals in Iraq and Guantanamo, Cuba.

But Rice will shift to offense when she visits Europe next week, in a strategy that has emerged in recent days and been tested by her spokesman in public and in her private meetings with European visitors.

She will remind allies they themselves have been cooperating in U.S. operations and tell them to do more to win over their publics as a way to deflect criticism directed at the United States, diplomats and U.S. officials said.

"It's very clear they want European governments to stop pushing on this," said a European diplomat, who had contact with U.S. officials over the handling of the scandals. "They were stuck on the defensive for weeks, but suddenly the line has toughened up incredibly," the diplomat said.

Irish Foreign Minister Dermot Ahern said Rice told him in Washington she expected allies to trust that America does not allow rights abuses -- a sign she will avoid giving Europe a detailed response on U.S. intelligence work.

And she refused to give Ahern a personal assurance Ireland has not been used for secret prisoner transfers, saying he had already heard that denial from the U.S. ambassador, a senior State Department official said.


Rice will deliver her message in private meetings with officials in Germany and at the EU headquarters in Brussels during a trip that starts on Monday and also includes a stop in Romania, which denies accusations it hosts a secret prison.

There are signs Europe has already begun to get the message to ease up on the controversy.

Ahern said he accepted the U.S. word. Germany, whose foreign minister also pressed Rice this week during a visit, said it would wait patiently for a U.S. response.

But the State Department also plans a stronger defence of its policies to try to reframe a debate in Europe that threatens to undo some of the repair Rice has made this year to trans-Atlantic ties that were frayed over the Iraq war.

Rice will stress in public that Washington does not violate allies' sovereignty or break international law, and she will remind publics their governments are cooperating in a fight against militants who have bombed commuters in Madrid and London, senior U.S. officials said.

"It is the responsibility, also, of governments to explain as clearly as possible to their publics and publics around the world what it is that they are doing in fighting the war on terrorism," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said.

Rice began the year on her first foreign trip as secretary of state wooing European allies with a charm offensive that set a new tone for relations after disputes over Iraq.

But the top diplomat from the sole superpower can also get tough with her European counterparts.

U.S. diplomats recount how her successful stance against EU plans to lift an arms embargo against China unnerved Europeans, as she sternly told them not to sell weapons that could end up being aimed at U.S. forces in Asia.

One foreign minister spilt his drink when she delivered that warning over coffee in Brussels, a senior U.S. official said.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sat Dec 03, 2005 07:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Getting to Shannon on any type of a regular basis would be a problem for me right now. But I'd love to help out with the research side of things.

Gimme a shout and let me know what I can do.


Keep up the excellent work.


Seán Ryan

author by Coilín ÓhAiseadhapublication date Sat Dec 03, 2005 22:02author address Máigh Nuad, Co. Cill Daraauthor phone Report this post to the editors

US civil rights watchdog to sue CIA over detainee
03 Dec 2005 17:01:54 GMT
Source: Reuters

By Chris Baltimore

WASHINGTON, Dec 3 (Reuters) - A U.S. civil liberties group says it plans to sue the CIA in the case of a man who alleges he was kidnapped and sent to Afghanistan to be interrogated as a terrorism suspect.

The American Civil Liberties Union, in a release issued on Friday, alleged that "CIA officials at the highest level violated U.S. and universal human rights laws" when CIA agents seized an unidentified man and flew him to a secret prison in Afghanistan near Kabul called the "Salt Pit."

The ACLU said the lawsuit would be the first legal challenge of a practice known as "extraordinary rendition," and will be filed in court on Tuesday. It did not say when or in which country the alleged kidnapping took place.

At a news conference in Washington that day, the man represented by the ACLU will appear and state that CIA-authorized agents abducted, beat and drugged him before sending him to the secret Afghanistan facility, the group said.

The man is innocent, the ACLU said, and was held without notice for an undisclosed time before being released without ever being charged of a crime. An ACLU spokesman declined to give additional details about the case or the plaintiff.

The ACLU said the lawsuit will also involve unidentified companies that owned and operated airplanes used to transport the plaintiff.


AlertNet news is provided by Reuters

Related Link: http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/N03375226.htm
author by Deirdre Clancypublication date Sat Dec 03, 2005 23:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors

There was a discussion of the CIA planes on Saturday View on RTE Radio 1 today. It was shocking how ill-informed some of the commentators were, apart from David Norris. Tony Kileen said that the idea that CIA planes were going through Shannon was due to "rumours" rather than fact, despite the fact that numerous photographs have been taken of them and sightings made, something which Rodney Rice didn't see fit to point out. Why didn't they invite Ed Horgan or Tim Hourigan onto the panel? Norris was the only person (apart from Joan Burton) who thought it laughable that people gave any credence to the idea that Condoleeza Rice was telling Dermot Ahern the truth - pointing out that the US administration had lied to its own military allies about the use of white phosphorous in Iraq and to the world in general about, oh, just about everything else.

Why haven't the mainstream media been down in Shannon in relation to the Ahern story? Why haven't they published the amply available photos of the torture jets going through Shannon in relation to it? I suppose because they're the corporate media and the state media. Still, as taxpayers who fund the public broadcaster, we should be up in arms about the level of wilfull ignorance displayed around this issue.

author by aneverendingsupplypublication date Sun Dec 04, 2005 00:44author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Rice to take hard line on CIA prisons claim (FT)

Condoleezza Rice, US secretary of state, is expected to begin her trip to Europe next week with a forceful rejection of requests for information regarding alleged secret CIA prisons in Europe and clandestine transiting of war-on-terror suspects.

So, not a rejection of the claims, not a denial of the facts, a rejection of the requests for information

Diplomats said that Ms Rice, who arrives in Germany on Monday and meets Chancellor Angela Merkel the next day, is not expected to reveal information - as formally requested by the European Union last week - but to defend the US need to obtain intelligence.

"Her response will be suitably diplomatic, but also forceful," commented one envoy.

The US state department declined to comment on how Ms Rice would respond. While refusing to respond to reports of secret prisons and transport of detainees in Europe, officials insist that US actions are in compliance with US law and international conventions. US law prohibits secret prisons on US territory.

As noted by Fran in an earlier thread, there is no mention of international law here, but there is also this new parsing of words: "US law prohibits secret prisons on US territory" (i.e. but not, presumably, on foreign territories). Is that actually true, in any case? That sounds really strange to me. And it is sad to see European governments accepting to take Condi's word for these reassurances that nothing illegal is happening.

Related Link: http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2005/12/3/222959/321
author by Eoinpublication date Sun Dec 04, 2005 02:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Where are the ICCL all this time?

author by under beds hiding by look of thingspublication date Sun Dec 04, 2005 02:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors


author by redjadepublication date Sun Dec 04, 2005 13:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Open Question:

The CIA 'Rendition' Planes scandal is all over Europe and all over the world these days. It was exposed a long time ago here on Indymedia.ie as the planes were found to be landing Shannon Airport.

So why does the world's mainstream media generally ignore Ireland's 'contribution' to US Torture?

Is this a case of Ireland's activists not having educated the mainstream media? Do we need to launch an email campaign to Der Spiegel, NY Times, BBC, and so on, explaining the story?

Remember, Norway didn't know about Shell/StatOil in Co Mayo until one Indymedia activist started making phone calls to Norway.

Ireland should be on this map, why didn't Der Spiegel add it?

Big image here...

(reminder: Wine contest ends on Monday 5pm!)

click on radio.indymedia link to see big image
click on radio.indymedia link to see big image

author by eeekkkkkkpublication date Sun Dec 04, 2005 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

because ireland despite being 3rd in league tables of cia flights in europe is absent from most reports now that story has gone 'massive'

author by W. Finnertypublication date Sun Dec 04, 2005 21:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A new book named "THE FIXER" by United States lawyer Teddy Moore alleges that corruption and fear is rampant among lawyers within the United States jurisdiction.

Amazingly, and among several other things, Mr Moore openly claims that the US Supreme Court supervises rackets of extortion, bribes and extreme corruption - and that the rich and powerful can get the judgements they want for the price they can afford.

More information on Mr Moore and his new book can be found at:

author by Patpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 01:27author email beyourownreason at gmail dot comauthor address author phone 0863424629Report this post to the editors

Can help with research, several hours a day as i'm not
working and I'm not planning to. Have a connection at home so I'll be happy to give you a hand.
Drop me an email:

author by eeekkkkpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 10:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The paper of record today contains an article from the guardian service - no addition - not a whisper that Ireland may be involved.

Shame on you madam. Sins of omission are still sins.

author by eeekkkkkpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 10:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Military autopsy reports provide indisputable proof that detainees are being tortured to death while in US military custody. Yet the US corporate media are covering it with the seriousness of a garage sale for the local Baptist Church.

A recent American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) posting of one of forty-four US military autopsy reports reads as follows: "Final Autopsy Report: DOD 003164, (Detainee) Died as a result of asphyxia (lack of oxygen to the brain) due to strangulation as evidenced by the recently fractured hyoid bone in the neck and soft tissue hemorrhage extending downward to the level of the right thyroid cartilage. Autopsy revealed bone fracture, rib fractures, contusions in mid abdomen, back and buttocks extending to the left flank, abrasions, lateral buttocks. Contusions, back of legs and knees; abrasions on knees, left fingers and encircling to left wrist. Lacerations and superficial cuts, right 4th and 5th fingers. Also, blunt force injuries, predominately recent contusions (bruises) on the torso and lower extremities. Abrasions on left wrist are consistent with use of restraints. No evidence of defense injuries or natural disease. Manner of death is homicide. Whitehorse Detainment Facility, Nasiriyah, Iraq." "

Related Link: http://www.commondreams.org/views05/1202-28.htm
author by eeekkkkkpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 10:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors


"'We're all in this together and you need to look at yourselves as much as us'. People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones."

This is an argument that is suited for a mob, not for diplomacy. It sounds more like it is about keeping "the gang" together.

Any such attempts to silence European protest must be declined. But, on the other hand: Any European leader who knew more about CIA torture/deportation than he admits now, has to be held accounted for as well. Only a good share of public pressure will provide for that.

author by anonpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 16:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A new US base deal at the same "black site".

Us hypocrites

Condi's statement "You're in on to so shut up"

"The United States has fully respected the sovereignty of other countries that have co-operated in these matters. " Dr Rice's mention of sovereignty implied that any American counter-terrorism operations conducted in Europe and elsewhere have enjoyed the co-operation of local governments.

"RTÉ news has learned...","According to information obtained by RTÉ under the Freedom of Information Act"

"Until the planes doors are opened..."

An air traffic scanner euthusiast rang Joe Duffy to tell of his conerns over last Thursday emergency landing

I think he confirmed radio chat of Helium canisters, this plane wasn't going to land at Shannon but was it going to overfly?, I though it was only troops that were transported through Ireland not hardware?

author by news.amnesty - Amnesty Internationalpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 18:08author email newsamnesty at amnesty dot orgauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Amnesty International press release -
"Amnesty International today revealed that six planes used by the CIA for renditions have made some 800 flights in or out of European airspace including 50 landings at Shannon airport in the Republic of Ireland."


Related Link: http://news.amnesty.org/
author by Niall Harnett - Na Cosantoiri Siochanapublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 20:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Condoleezza says that the US do not transport terror suspects for the purpose of interrogation using torture.

Mary Robinson, in diplomatic fashion, says Rice is using a form of words that "seem to be extremely carefully framed" and needs to be questioned further with regard to the definition of torture. "What now constitutes torture?", she asks.

David Norris said on Saturday that the US administration are lying continuously, even to their closest ally, Britain.

John Gormley said today that he doesn't believe their lies either.

Michael Mc Dowell says he believes them.

author by Eoin Dubskypublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 22:24author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Whether the Irish Government would like to trust American officials or not is surely besides the point. The European Convention on Human Rights (and the 2003 Act) requires that they "secure" for anyone in the country (even on a plane, only briefly passing via Shannon Airport) the basic human right not to be tortured.

author by BPpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 22:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

... to try GASSING the Iraqi Resistance, using Helium?

They seem to be getting desperate enough, as the wheels fall off the propaganda shitcart that has carried them this far.

Or maybe they confused 'He.', the chemical symbol for Helium, with 'H.E.', the well-known shorthand for 'High Explosives'?

Or maybe they had 600 Tonnes of H.E. packed around the 60 Tonnes of He., and wanted to test this fusion bomb in Shannon?

And was this 'dummy run' intended as a 'shock-and-awe'-type warning to our puppets in Dail Eireann?

Ah, the endless speculation, delightful it is.

author by Elainepublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 22:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

on RTE's Questions And Answers tonight at 10.35, RTE1. 'U.S. Planes using Shannon' among other topics.

E-mail questions to qanda@rte.ie

author by Michaelpublication date Mon Dec 05, 2005 23:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The church child abuse tragedy in Ireland was in large part about the negligence of state authorities, their unhealthy belief in leaving the church to do its business with the children of Ireland and the rapists in its ranks, and finally of course the sexual and mental torture meted out by the priests.

The government say that they've learned their lesson; but have they really.

No Irish judge will force the state to check the contents of the aircraft identified as being used for the CIA's torture traffic. I can't imagine someone from the DPP seeking extradition warrants for kidnappers from the CIA, as the Italian prosecutor's office in Milan did.

Where are the honest civil servants in the departments of transport and foreign affairs?
Where are the customs officers, Gardai and Irish soldiers who step up to look inside these planes?
Where are the union leaders who will support industrial action by workers at Shannon and others who handle overflights and refueling?
Where are the priests and the bishops speaking out against the government's continued collaboration with torturers and murderers?

author by anonpublication date Tue Dec 06, 2005 06:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Dermo tells me that those conspiraloon black sites that did't exist up until last month have been shut thanks to CIA whistle blower. http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/Investigation/story?id=1375123

Two CIA secret prisons were operating in Eastern Europe until last month when they were shut down following Human Rights Watch reports of their existence in Poland and Romania.

Eugene "Rubber Stamp" Pratt from Shannon Airport.
`Approvals for flights are a matter for the department of transport and the government,'' said Eugene Pratt, external relations manager at Shannon Airport. ``These are private jets. We merely handle and facilitate approved flights.''

Very interesting. While enroute to and fro overseas training, I was on an all-military commercial flight. Not allowed to enter the public terminal during a layover in Germany (the reason told to us being that a general consensus of animosity towards the U.S. military existed), During another layover we landed in…….Shannon, Ireland. The vast majority of us were allowed into the public terminal to kick a few back and interact with the general public while in uniform. If soldiers in uniform are given the OK to booze it up and mingle at Shannon airport all the while being practically welcomed with open arms…..one begins to wonder: what’s going on behind closed doors?

author by anonpublication date Tue Dec 06, 2005 10:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Many listeners to Radio 4's Today Programme will have been shocked this morning to hear their new presenter Stephen Sackur apparently supporting the use of torture.

Mary ain't happy but being is diplomatic.

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2005/12/329308.htm
author by W. Finnertypublication date Tue Dec 06, 2005 11:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Is it not the case that, at the root of all these problems, lays the fact that the United States is at the present time being run as a plutocracy (i.e. a state run by the wealthy), which has no real regard whatsoever for democracy and human rights - other than to pay lip-service to such principles for the purpose of hoodwinking the majority of people they need to vote them into power?

Though the "traditional media" seem to be remarkably slow to inform people about it, possibly because they (as suggested in the interview) play a leading role in sustaining the problem, a very interesting and deep insight into the "plutocracy theory" can be found in a recent video interview with United States lawyer Teddy Moore - which can now be viewed from the following Internet address:

Related Link: http://www.constitutionofireland.com/
author by Patpublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 01:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Came accross this while doing research

'Abduction' jet makes Shannon stops
By Paul Colgan
DUBLIN -- A U.S. military jet used in the transport of Al Qaeda suspects from locations in Europe and the Middle East has used Shannon airport on at least 13 occasions in the last four years, it's been confirmed.

Full story: http://www.irishecho.com/search/searchstory.cfm?id=15439&issueid=384

And Ahern statements:

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 09:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

George Bush 13th march 2002.

"September the 11th has reinforced these bonds of friendship. Ireland is a valued member of the international coalition against terrorism. Ireland has allowed American military planes to use its airports and has helped to rebuild Afghanistan. We appreciate your help in a just and vital cause."

Read full transcript:- http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/03/20020313-2.html

Or if you'd prefer to watch it:- http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/03/20020313-2.v.html


Seán Ryan

author by W. Finnertypublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 10:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Article 4 of the United Nations "CONVENTION AGAINST TORTURE and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment" states:

1) Each State Party shall ensure that all acts of torture are offences under its criminal law. The same shall apply to an attempt to commit torture and to an act by any person which constitutes complicity or participation in torture.

2) Each State Party shall make these offences punishable by appropriate penalties which take into account their grave nature.

>>> "... whether physical or mental ..." >>>
Article 1 states:

1) For the purposes of this Convention, torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.

The full text of the Convention can be seen at:


Ratification information (for the Republic of Ireland):

Date of entry into force: 11/05/2002



Section 2 (Offence of torture):

1) A public official, whatever his or her nationality, who carries out an act of torture on a person, whether within or outside the State, shall be guilty of the offence of torture.

2) A person, whatever his or her nationality, other than a public official, who carries out an act of torture on another person, whether within or outside the State, at the instigation of, or with the consent or acquiescence of, a public official shall be guilty of the offence of torture.

3) A person guilty of the offence of torture shall be liable on conviction on indictment to imprisonment for life.

The full text of the Act can be seen at:


Related Link: http://www.constitutionofireland.com/
author by tom eilepublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 13:39author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'm getting very thirsty

author by anonpublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 16:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Activists refuse to accept US assurances on CIA flights

The Oireachtas foreign affairs committee wants to question US Ambassador James Kenny about the matter.

Tim Hourigan from the Cosantoiri Siochana group said today that he hoped the committee would ask probing questions as the Government was turning a blind eye to the issue.

Bertie gives u.s. assurances.

author by R. Isiblepublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 17:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I can only assume that you are trolling across threads and trying to drag in the argument over 911 (where this term was used extensively on the site). Describing the idea that there are rendition prisons as "conspiraloon" is foolish given that there are multiple /independent/ witnesses providing corroborating tendencies.

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/newswire.php?story_id=73255&comment_id=130451
author by Michaelpublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 17:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Ms Justice Macken said that she'd finally return a verdict this Friday, but it looks like it'll be next Tuesday if at all.

In September 2002, three days after spraying a US Air Force C-130 warplane at Shannon Airport, Eoin Dubsky began a high court case against the state for Ireland's participation in the Afghanistan war.

author by R. Isiblepublication date Wed Dec 07, 2005 18:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Berties gives evasive non-answer. see link below:

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/newswire.php?story_id=73351
author by redjadepublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 00:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

• EXCLUSIVE: Sources Tell ABC News Top Al Qaeda Figures Held in Secret CIA Prisons

Two CIA secret prisons were operating in Eastern Europe until last month when they were shut down following Human Rights Watch reports of their existence in Poland and Romania.

Current and former CIA officers speaking to ABC News on the condition of confidentiality say the United States scrambled to get all the suspects off European soil before Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived there today. The officers say 11 top al Qaeda suspects have now been moved to a new CIA facility in the North African desert.

CIA officials asked ABC News not to name the specific countries where the prisons were located, citing security concerns.

The CIA declines to comment, but current and former intelligence officials tell ABC News that 11 top al Qaeda figures were all held at one point on a former Soviet air base in one Eastern European country. Several of them were later moved to a second Eastern European country.


The CIA has used a small fleet of private jets to move top al Qaeda suspects from Afghanistan and the Middle East to Eastern Europe, where Human Rights Watch has identified Poland and Romania as the countries that housed secret sites.

But Polish Defense Minister Radoslaw Sikorski told ABC Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross today: "My president has said there is no truth in these reports."

Ross asked: "Do you know otherwise, sir, are you aware of these sites being shut down in the last few weeks, operating on a base under your direct control?"

Sikorski answered, "I think this is as much as I can tell you about this."

more at

• Following is a list of 12 high-value targets housed by the CIA.
Abu Zubaydah: Held first in Thailand then Poland
Ibn Al-Shaykh al-Libi: Held in Poland. Previously held in Pakistan/Afghanistan
Abdul Rahim al-Sharqawi: Held in Poland
Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri: Held in Poland
Ramzi Binalshibh: Held in Poland
Mohammed Omar Abdel-Rahman: Held in Poland
Khalid Shaikh Mohammed: Held in Poland
Waleed Mohammed bin Attash: Held in Poland
Hambali: In U.S. custody. Kept isolated from other high-value targets.
Hassan Ghul: Held in Poland.
Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani: Held in Poland
Abu Faraj al-Libbi: Held in Poland

author by redjadepublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 00:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

»»My Thoughts....

• The Gulags were closed only last month? (November 2005) That means Rice and the Bush Gang have been lying for a while. Why does the Irish govt claim they were 'reassured' by the US when its obvious they are being lied to? Does the Irish State have any dignity - ok, that was a rhetorical question.

• Only last week there were press reports saying this was 'old news' and that the Gulags existed only in the 'early days' of the War on Terror. Lie.

• Watch as many in EUrope say this is reason for Romania NOT being in the EU - will they say the same for Poland? What exactly is the moral difference between having Gulags on your soil and sending people to Gulags, via your soil?

• 'The United States scrambled to get all the suspects off European soil before Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice' - What countries assisted these getaway Planes fleeing the scene of a crime? Do we know for a fact that these people have been shipped to 'North Africa' - or is that a diversion? Not unlikely that they were sent to GITMO via Shannon.

• 'a list of 12 high-value targets'? twelve people in two prisons? What? six in each?! This smells funny right from the start. There would have to be a lot more people than just 12 - or are we being told about these twelve Al-Q baddies to cover for the hundreds or thousands of others?

• Much of the world may find it 'ironic' that KGB Gulags and Soviet Airbases are being used by the CIA for Torture and Gulags - but for many in the countries that used to be occupied/dominated by the Soviets this is offensive. To say the least, it represents a new 'challenge' for White House PR hacks - how does one disassociate George W Bush with Stalinism?

• 'The CIA has used a small fleet of private jets to move top al Qaeda suspects from Afghanistan and the Middle East to Eastern Europe.' Jayzus! Once again, the MSM ignores Ireland's contribution to Torture. When are activists gonna start emailing the MSM about this?

• If there was anytime during this ugly war that vindicated Planespotting and some Ploughshare-Style Direct Action, this would be it - it could have saved some lives from misery and perhaps from death if someone caught those getaway planes fleeing from the scene of the crime.

»» just my thoughts for now

author by eeekkkpublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 01:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

stalin himself would be proud.

Why didn't he ask them WHY they believed there were a lot more flights by cia planes thru shannon than ammnesty / govt / msm etc were saying and WHAT EVIDENCE they had?

maybe he didn't want to know? Maybe Madam nixed their answers to that question?

he was happy enough to make it seem like he did a bit more work than reading websites by quoting them as saying they believed there were more planes

another see no evil speak no evil hear no evil unless the unwashed are able to read it in the quality papers from the uk organ grinders monkey?

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 08:25author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Encouraged, by the recent success of Dr. Coilín ÓhAiseadha, when he recently e-mailed our leader about his unethical habit of misquoting people in order to get himself out of a corner. In this particular case, Mr. Ahern had misquoted and misrepresented what Human Rights Watch had said about the Americans setting up prisons in European countries, in order not to have to face up to the issue of extraordinary renditions being perpetrated in Shannon. I decided to break what up to this point, had been a lifelong promise to myself. I e-mailed our leader too.

Here's a copy of the letter I sent him. I'll publish the reply, if and when I get one.


Seán Ryan

Ps. Way to go redjade.


Thursday Dec 8th.

Mr. Bertie Ahern.
Fellow Irish citizen.

Mr. Ahern,
I'm writing to you in the hope that I can reach your humanity. I have wanted to write to you many times, but I never have. I have always felt that I would be wasting both our times. But, with news on Shannon updating at a very rapid pace, and extraordinary renditions and other disgusting behaviours coming to light in such a fashion, that even one who acts as blind as you mostly do, could not avoid feeling ill at the very thought of it all, add to this the growing international concern and condemnation and you will see why I, a simple citizen, feel that now is a good time to bend your ear a little, and that you might just listen to me.

As part of Bush's policy of treating those who are not with him as his enemies, Mary Robinson, an ex-Irish President, of unsullied reputation, is forced to leave her position in the UN, after she called attention to horrific conditions endured by Afghan prisoners. Funnily enough, Mary Robinson has spent most of her political life, championing such causes as, womens rights, birth control, pluralism within soceity, and human rights. It would be very fair to say that Mary Robinson epitomised that which Bush said he found lacking in the Taliban regime, and consequently used as an excuse to violate the peoples of Afghanistan. Admittedly, not the first sign nor the last sign, that should have made you and our government rethink your collective complicity in this series of crimes against humanity.

For me personally, it was a moment of lucidity that shocked me. I had been trying to write a book at the time, and had done a lot of research and more importantly, I had been doing a lot of self reflection. Anyway, a lot of research had centred around American warmongering (financial and physical) and the fact that our government never condemned any atrocity committed by the Americans. I knew the story, I was clued in. I could predict trends, I could predict squabbles and what they entailed, from and for our government, as you rushed around trying desperately not to notice America's crimes.When the first bomb struck Afghanistan and totted up its collateral damage, I knew and felt, that I had aided in this crime, but the realisation didn't hit me hard enough, I'm a tough guy, I've seen sorrow and tears in the eyes of many, and I've endured. I, through the actions of my government, was guilty of something, a warmonger maybe, or possibly apathy. It wasn't until that moment, when I heard about the insulting (both a national insult and a personal one) forced resignation of Mrs. Robinson, and the silence both foreign and national as everyone said absolutely nothing, again - that is when it was rammed home to me. The fact, that my government had neither honour nor shame, was not new to me, that I must not have an abundance of either, was a life clarifying realisation. Up until that point, I had gotten on fine, I had just coasted along, thinking, "hey I'm great! The whole world functions just as I know it has to." Understanding is like that sometimes. Sometimes understanding, replaces the emotions of compassion and empathy, and guilt.

It's very, very simple, in the end, I'm Irish. I love my country and I love my people. I refuse regularly to stand for my national anthem. Not in insult to those who've passed, or those who stood whilst I sat, but in protest to the insult we offer daily to our dead, to those who died pursuing but never knowing freedom, and in protest to the insult we offer ourselves when we play it. We had the chance of freedom, but chose instead to retain the king's dirty penny, or rather Uncle Sam's golden straightjacket. You choose to exercise the office of government to perpetuate this choice.

Proof after proof is laid before you, our government, year after year. Tens of thousands have marched and demonstrated and begged you, our government, to do the right thing.Volumes of proofs, of American crimes against humanity have been offered to you, and our government. But no, a simple assurance from any American government lacky, outweighs the voice of the Irish people.

This is what I am guilty of. I am Irish, and I have no voice or representation. I am alone, and I am alone in a country with more than 3,500,000 citizens who are also alone.We who re-educated and revived a dying world, during the dark ages, have finally encountered our own dark age, where no light or reason can be expressed.

I beg you, not on the behalf of anyone else Mr. Ahern, I beg you on my own behalf, give me back my dignity, as a citizen of Ireland and of this world, give back to me the dignity that your actions and inactions have stolen from me, I beg you Mr. Ahern and your government, and those who sit supposedly in opposition, bring this to an end. You know that you are wrong, and you know history will show this. You are the leaders of this country. For the first time, take responsibility and act in a just fashion, end our collaboration with the enemies of humanity. Read the preamble of our constitution, your "neutrality policy" and current behaviour are an insult to the preamble of our constitution, and to the people of this island. You are an elected servant of the people of this country, but you self-serving methodology is a serious conflict of interest on your part.

Say "No!" And stop saying it to the people of Ireland.

I understand what this will mean. It will mean at some point, that America must be told to stop, and to disarm. It's a very frightening prospect I'll grant you. That is why the future has always belonged to humanity. If humanity dies, there is no future. Take that first step Mr. Ahern, that first step, will for the first time show the quality required for the position you claim often to fill, that first step will begin to cleanse our collective soul, Ireland.

I've taken enough of you time. I would appreciate a response, but would respect action. I would not appreciate lip service from you, when all I ask is that you listen, and then reflect. I would also appreciate it very much if you would not get one of your subordiantes to pass this letter to some other government department, I find this insulting too. You may have noticed that offering insult to Irish citizens is a sub-theme of this letter, the main theme of course being, our ongoing participation in the destruction of humanity. This letter is addressed to you, and to you alone.


Séan Ryan.

Irish citizen.

author by Scottpublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 15:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Islamic radicals emphatically reject virtually everything for which the peace movement stands: the peaceful resolution of international conflict; respect and tolerance for other cultures and faiths; civil liberties; freedom of expression; freedom of thought; human rights; democracy; women's rights; gay rights; and the separation of church and state.

author by Scottpublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 15:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Islamic radicals emphatically reject virtually everything for which the peace movement stands: the peaceful resolution of international conflict; respect and tolerance for other cultures and faiths; civil liberties; freedom of expression; freedom of thought; human rights; democracy; women's rights; gay rights; and the separation of church and state.

author by Anthonypublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 15:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Because suspects are only suspects and aren't actually guilty - whether they be Muslim or not. There are countless cases of people who made false confessions after being tortured (including quite a few on this little island off the coast of Europe). Torture is carried out as a means to terrorise the individual and the community.

author by hmmmpublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 16:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

* anywhere in the world, will not be allowed in UK courtcases.

* Rice has "allayed" NATO concerns.
But one editorials in Spain today maintain that the "whiff" of CIA torture links outside of Europe particularly in the destination countries of North Africa remain an issue, putting it this way : "if the US doesn't torture but relies on others to do so, then the words of Rice are worthless".


author by redjadepublication date Thu Dec 08, 2005 18:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

John R. Bolton, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations said today....

"Today is Human Rights Day. It would be appropriate, I think, for the U.N.'s high commissioner for human rights to talk about the serious human rights problems that exist in the world today," Bolton told reporters. "It is disappointing that she has chosen to talk about press commentary about alleged American conduct. I think the secretary of state has fully and completely addressed the substance of the allegations, so I won't go back into that again other than to reaffirm that the United States does not engage in torture."

He added: "I think it is inappropriate and illegitimate for an international civil servant [Louise Arbour] to second-guess the conduct that we're engaged in in the war on terror, with nothing more as evidence than what she reads in the newspapers."


author by Seán Ryanpublication date Fri Dec 09, 2005 02:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I got a reply form our leader's minion.

Thank you for contacting the Department of the Taoiseach.

Your message has been received and will be reviewed.



In reply to Scott: To satiate you, it seems that a peace protester must justify somebody's evil action to you. This is a very dishonest approach by you if you ask me, considering that the peace movement is against all sub-humane behaviour (note that I said behaviour and not culture). If you cannot accept that or understand it, well that's fine. It takes all types. Why not join some pro-war group? I'm sure you can find them protesting your cause at......am......... Well I'm sure you'll find them if you go look.


Seán Ryan

author by Mungopublication date Fri Dec 09, 2005 03:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Was Khaled el Masri a suspect?
He's a German citizen, taken from Macedonia while on holidays, spent 3 months in a CIA hole in Afghanistan before they admitted they had the wrong guy, but they held him another 2 months anyway.
The plane that snatched him came through Shannon on the way to get him...
The ACLU is suing the US Govt on his behalf, he travelled to the US to appear in court, but was refused entry to the country and sent home. But that's hardly unfair, or inhumane is it?

Was Shafiq Rasul a suspect?
After months of torture in Guantanamo, he signed a statement admitting to being with Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan. Later MI6 proved that his original alibi was correct and that he couldn't possibly have been in Afghanistan as his 'confession' stated.
But hey, what's the harm?

Was Maher Arar a suspect?
He says he is innocent, the CIA took him to Syria where he was tortured, put in a grave and urinated on, and eventually he signed a false confession, but was later set free by the Syrians after months of ill treatment. Why should we sympathise with him?

Answers on a postcard to...

Or if you haven't figured it out... stop typing ... and think a while.
Nobody here supports terrorism (unless you're a cheerleader for bombing downtown Fallujah and shooting crowds with white phosphorous)
But even US Military intelligence has said that most Guantanamo detainees are 'nobodys who know squat' and that Guantanamo has become a dumping ground for people that the CIA doesn't know what to do with.
furthermore, consider that the war, and the deaths of innocent people was partly based on false confessions presented as intelligence, as in "We have intelligence that Saddam works with Al Qaeda" - a blatant lie, but they can produce a signed confession all the same, and 100,000 dead Iraqis later, they still have people willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.

author by Kevin manneringspublication date Fri Dec 09, 2005 13:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Mungo writes:

"The plane that snatched him (Masri) came through Shannon on the way to get him..."

Mungo, please post your evidence for this. Remember there is an official investigation into kidnapping, extortion and GBH ongoing.

That means that if the plane went through Shannon, a criminal offence was committed at Shannon, as they were on their way to the kidnapping, which is part and parcel of the crime. Should the plane be seen again, the Guards would be obliged to impound it and question the crew.

Citizens would have the right of arrest, and should also take any reasonable steps to disable the plane.

That is all in the spirit of what our great Taoiseach told us to do, as in this case there IS evidence of crime.

The same of course applies if it lands anywhere in Germany, or anywhere else.

author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 09, 2005 16:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Qaeda-Iraq Link U.S. Cited Is Tied to Coercion Claim
December 9, 2005

The Bush administration based a crucial prewar assertion about ties between Iraq and Al Qaeda on detailed statements made by a prisoner while in Egyptian custody who later said he had fabricated them to escape harsh treatment, according to current and former government officials.

The officials said the captive, Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi, provided his most specific and elaborate accounts about ties between Iraq and Al Qaeda only after he was secretly handed over to Egypt by the United States in January 2002, in a process known as rendition.

The new disclosure provides the first public evidence that bad intelligence on Iraq may have resulted partly from the administration's heavy reliance on third countries to carry out interrogations of Qaeda members and others detained as part of American counterterrorism efforts. The Bush administration used Mr. Libi's accounts as the basis for its prewar claims, now discredited, that ties between Iraq and Al Qaeda included training in explosives and chemical weapons.


In statements before the war, and without mentioning him by name, President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, Colin L. Powell, then the secretary of state, and other officials repeatedly cited the information provided by Mr. Libi as "credible" evidence that Iraq was training Qaeda members in the use of explosives and illicit weapons. Among the first and most prominent assertions was one by Mr. Bush, who said in a major speech in Cincinnati in October 2002 that "we've learned that Iraq has trained Al Qaeda members in bomb making and poisons and gases."

More athe New York Times...

author by Mungopublication date Fri Dec 09, 2005 17:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It left Washington D.C, stopped in Shannon, and headed East. After it picked up el-Masri it went to Baghdad and then Kabul.
The flight log was published in Newsweek.
This has already been brought to the attention of the Garda Siochana at Shannon.

author by redjadepublication date Fri Dec 09, 2005 21:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors


The article that exposed this was:

• Aboard Air CIA
by Newsweek

• The Irish Examiner also did the story

Plane ‘used in US terrorist snatch’ passed through Shannon
{ Google Cache of Irish Examiner article from 26/02/05 - seems that the article is no longer on the Examiner.ie website )

• I archived the Irish Examiner article here (.pdf format)

• Photos of N313P

• Wikipedia has an entry

By the way, the earliest mention of N313P in the Irish Times was November 4th 2005

and I couldn't find any reference on the RTÉ website


MSNBC/Newsweek mentioned Shannon Feb 2005
MSNBC/Newsweek mentioned Shannon Feb 2005

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Sat Dec 10, 2005 07:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

In this week's Limerick Leader, Willie O Dea is interviewed on the front page.

He claims that if extraordinary renditions were happening in Shannon, that this would be "totally unacceptable."

Methinks the constitution spells out in no uncertain terms for Mr. O Dea, that any military on Irish soil not under the control of the Óireachtas is in breach of Irish law.

The fact that Willie is a barrister, when coupled with the fact that he is also minister for defence, points to Willie being very useless, at either of his professions, and points very assuredly to the fact that he needs to be sacked. And when this is done his behaviour should be referenced to our constitution to see if there are there any suitable charges that could be brought against him.

Another quote from the same article has made me doubt my eyesight.

Willie snivels, "I disagreed with the decision to go to war in Iraq. I still disagree with it. I think it was a bad decision. That's my opinion. The Government has a different opinion."

I wonder in which part of the decision making process Willie is referring to. What part in it did he play? More importantly, how did the government convince the Yanks to invade? What you mean the American army really is under the control of the Óireachtas

Ok fair enough, I might be going a little too hard on Willie in the above paragraph. But answer me this.
Why is it that Willie regularly refers to the Ploughshares as criminals?

Afterall they haven't been convicted of any crime. Remember Willie was a Junior Minister for justice too. Willy says he doesn't agree with the war, yet he is more insulting about the Ploughshares than any of the rest of the Government, who according to him are in favour of the illegal war in Iraq. One would think he'd be the least critical of the Ploughshares since they shared the same anti-war convictions.

Then again maybe this has nothing to do with the "war" angle. Maybe Willie is jealous. Afterall each of the five is very consistant in their thoughts and actions.

It seems poor ole Wille cannot even remain loyal to himself.

He's one very mixed up guy isn't he.

To cap it all off, guess what Willie reckoned would sort the whole mess out?

An "absolute assurance," from the Yanks.

I kid you not.

Course the Limerick Leader didn't grill him at all.

Typical huh.

Read the whole sorry piece of apathetic drivel at:

Well I'm off for a much needed beauty sleep


Seán Ryan

author by eeeekkkkkpublication date Sat Dec 10, 2005 10:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"At Shannon airport Tim Hourigan uses a scanner that allows him to see what air traffic control sees, and he, and other activists, religiously note down the numbers of landing planes. Then, using a combination of Federal Airport Authority Records and planespotting websites, they can track the movements of intelligence planes across the world. "It is a tedious job looking through hundreds of pictures of planes," says Mr Hourigan, who is not a planespotting enthusiast. "But it allows you to confirm and expose the activities of the CIA and our own government."

Related Link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,12271,1664149,00.html
author by eeekkkkkpublication date Sat Dec 10, 2005 10:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Years ago, Peter Drucker observed that any new technology which reduces the costs of production or distribution by 90% will inevitably replace the existing technology. The Internet has reduced the cost of distributing information by more than 90%. The cost of our time has increased, but we volunteer this time, either as producers (website owners) or consumers of information (readers).

Add to this the incredibly low cost of the Forward button.

The Internet is serving as a termite nest to the frame houses of the Establishment in every nation. It is providing facts and editorials that undermine the reading public's confidence in the official sources of information.

There is no unifying voice on the Internet. There is no all-encompassing worldview. Most important of all, there is no centralized group to buy off.

The Internet has no strategy. That is why it constitutes a true revolution. It is a technology, not a strategy. The nature of this technology is counter-strategy. The cost of transmitting information is borne by people who volunteer their time and who have Forward buttons. This has never happened before.

The only thing I can think of that is comparable was the system of Roman roads in the first century. Every religious group could take its message across the empire. The infrastructure was maintained by the state.

The printing press was similar in the sixteenth century, but presses were expensive. They could be targeted by censors. Paper sales could be traced. The ideological conflicts of the Protestant Reformation and Counter-Reformation were conducted with atoms, not electrons. The Internet revolution isn't.

The Internet is the incarnation of Hayek's concept of the spontaneous order. We have never seen anything like it before. The degree of spontaneity is spectacularly high because the transaction costs are so low. You can get your two cents' worth into the discussion for well under a penny. This fact is changing the world.

There is no overall strategy . . . not in anything connected with the Internet or to the Internet. It really is spontaneous, as far as non-Calvinists can affirm the existence of spontaneity.

This means that tactics are everything. Those critics who keep hammering away at the war in Iraq are like men with jack hammers. If they don't quit early and their internal organs don't fail, the highway will soon be a shambles.

Related Link: http://www.moonofalabama.org/2005/12/our_oil_interes.html#c11977438
author by Michaelpublication date Sun Dec 11, 2005 16:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The MD of Petrel Oil, a Mr. Horgan or Hogan, was one of only two members of Ireland's business community who spoke out before the Iraq war (the other man was Wallace the builder). He spoke on RTE radio a number of times about the threat of war to the Iraqi people. Once he even said that Saddam Hussein would be a PD if he were an Irish politician.

I never once heard anyone else from the business community put their name forward -- and their business's name -- in opposition to the Iraq war.

Willie O'Dea was the only government politician who publicly acknowledged the honesty and sincerity of the ploughshares activists. He said he couldn't support "criminal damage" however... but nobody does really.

author by eeekkkkpublication date Sun Dec 11, 2005 16:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

By their actions shall ye know them.

"I never once heard anyone else from the business community put their name forward -- and their business's name -- in oppositiion to the war"

Very convenient that. Ho(r?)gan profits all the same. Shares went up like a rocket post war. Probably a clever person (like bertie) would think 'well I'll be able to head off accusations of involvement in a criminal oilgrab if I just appear and say I'm against it all".

Willie owned lots of shares and cashed them in.

author by Michaelpublication date Sun Dec 11, 2005 17:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Afaik Petrel hasn't received any preferential treatment from the pupet regime in Iraq, unlike the American construction and energy companies with ties to the Bush Administration. No Irish company has. Petrel were involved in the Iraqi oil trade long before the invasion too, so there's no point in suggesting that they rode in on an American tank or anything of the sort.

The company may be rotten as hell -- I suppose it probably is. But that doesn't change the fact that almost NOBODY from the business community in Ireland had the moral decency to speak out against the invasion. The only two people I can remember were Mr. Horgan and Mr. Wallace. They probably had more economic interest than most people to keep mum (Petrel could have been banned from Iraq, and Wallace could have been blacklisted in Ireland). Mr. Wallace even went as far as the High Court to defend his right to hang a banner in the city centre decrying the war.

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 03:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Fáilte Michael.

I'm not going to get into the oil "debate" with you. That's been handled, and handled well already.

Now even from your own statement, that supposedly contradicts my view about Willie and his "support" for the Ploughshares.

Here's what you said:

"Willie O'Dea was the only government politician who publicly acknowledged the honesty and sincerity of the Ploughshares activists. He said he couldn't support "criminal damage" however... but nobody does really."

Let's break down your "evidence."

Willie O Dea acknowledged the honesty and sincerity of the Ploughshares activists. But he doesn't support criminal damage.

So bascically speaking, you acknowledge the fact that Mr. O Dea reckons, that the Ploughshares are an honest and sincere bunch of criminals.

In other words, you support my view, it's just that you don't realise it.

And I'm being kind to you.

I'd like to point out in the strongest terms to you that the "criminality" of the acts, of the Ploughshares, has never been established, nor in my opinion can it be. This view is borne out by the voracity with which the state has tried to criminalise these upholders of international law and solidarity. Ie. the state has used two of Bush's "friends" to preside as judges at both of the farces, loosely described as trials, in which the state takes the xenophobic stance, that there is no such thing as international law. In particular, these actions, show that the state is willing to urinate on the Nuremberg principals, and the Geneva conventions, long before the question of Ireland's complicity in the illegal wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, or our complicity in the torture of innocents, ever arises.

And before you attempt to "spin" what I say. Allow me to point out:

When I refer to our complicity in the torture of innocents and illegal wars I mean:

Firstly those abducted, and illegally rendered for torture, have neither had criminal charges lodged against them, nor are any of them subject to a trial. So don't spin the term "innocent."

The criminality of the illegal wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have been established. Our country until recently, have said at every given opportunity that the UN is the maker and upholder of international law. Neither war is a legal war, because neither has the legal sanction of the UN. And in fact the secetary general himself has referred to the Iraq war as being "illegal."

You may very well point out that nobody involved in illegal wars has been "criminalised."

I'd have to agree with you there. And point out to you, that that is what all this is about to begin with. This is to say that, this is a trial in the court of public opinion, and it is my belief, my hope and my intention that the evidence presented here, be used with other evidence and evidence being gathered, in an Irish court of law, to establish the criminality of our government and others. It is about accountability, not "flip flopping," ie. consistancy in one's words and actions. It is the case that actions speak louder than words and it is the case that when the "speak" of one's actions contradict the "speak" of one's words and that the "speak" of the actions are the actual message.

Well then we have what I like to call, a "liar."


Seán Ryan

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 04:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Sorry about that, I didn't realise I'd posted twice. I must have sent the unedited version (first post) by mistake.

I'd appreciate any indy editorial staff who happens by, removing my first response to Michael, in the interest of clarity.

And before I go, I'd like to say to Michael, that it is upon mature recollection (to quote a "flip flopper" from the past), that I realise that what I said in reply to you could very well be considered a personal attack. This was not my intention when I started my response, and in my tunnel vison methodology and ruthlessness I may have insulted you.

This is not my intent, I recognise you as a fellow debater, and a good one at that. More to the point, I often read what you post and agree with you, you are one of the many people here that I respect and like.

So whilst I stand by what I said about Mr. O Dea and the government overall. I realise that tactically I used the American, "Kill em all and let God sort em out," methodology. This was uncivilised of me and I apologise to you without reservation.


Seán Ryan

author by eeekkkkpublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 07:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Years pass and suddenly Tim Hourigan is given access to the pages of the Irish Times today. The Emperor must be on his way down.

Well done Tim.

author by redjadepublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 08:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thanks to Paul Cullen...

'Military business booms at Shannon'
by Paul Cullen

Paul, nice article - but I think we know that the Irish Times can do better than this token effort at report this old news - your article was just a first step.

btw, its not how many times N379P is mentioned that matters, but the context - Ireland is a card carrying member of Coalition of the Willing

author by Madam - ITpublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:15author address D'Olier Streetauthor phone Report this post to the editors

There is no longer a problem mentioning N379P. The number plate has been changed to something else.

Related Link: http://spaces.icgpartners.com/index2.asp?category=&eventdate=11/14/2004
author by iosafpublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 12:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

According to the Turkish authorities, this plane landed at Barcelona airport at 15h00 on the 31st of October for checks, and then took off the following day at 16h30 and did a stopover in Turkey en route to Baku.

The same plane has been already on the Afghani lists, but this was the first time it did a European airport. Its not big, nor is it fast.
The DHc8 is a type of turboprob (correct me if I'm wrong planespotters).

The Turks say 4 were on board, and it was in "their control" at all times, but they're still asking questions about it, and the Spanish minister for foreign affairs, has said he didn't know about it before so it wasn't the list of flights mentioned earlier.

Related Link: http://www.lavanguardia.es/web/20051212/51205974797.html
author by redjadepublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 13:33author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Weaselly Rice Tortures Facts
- Does the secretary of state think anyone is buying her spiel?
by Maureen Dowd

Our secretary of state's tortuous defence of supposedly non-existent CIA torture chambers in Eastern Europe was an acid flashback to Clintonian parsing.

Just as Bill Clinton pranced around questions about marijuana use at Oxford during the '92 campaign by saying he had never broken the laws of his country, so Condoleezza Rice pranced around questions about outsourcing torture by suggesting that President George W. Bush had never broken the laws of his country.

But in Bill's case, he was only talking about smoking a little joint, while Condi is talking about snatching people off the street and throwing them into lethal joints.

"The United States government does not authorize or condone torture of detainees," she said.

It all depends on what you mean by "authorize,'' "condone,'' ``torture" and "detainees.''

more at

author by Seán Ryanpublication date Mon Dec 12, 2005 23:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I've been doing some thinking, about this "helium" shite that RTE have foisted upon their duped product.

I remember reading some time back, somewhere, that America was running out of helium and that it would be in the next 25 years would not be able to produce any more. Or something close to that effect.

I also remember something about them selling off their reserves and investing in foreign supplies. And that they would have had all their reserves sold by 2005.

Ok, couple my very hazy recollection on the American history of helium, with the fact that this plane was on its way to Iraq. Add to this that Qatar is set to be one of the world's largest producers of .............? And add further to this that Qatar and .......... are bestest friends. And you get the urge to google.

Using my sophisticated knowledge of Boolean algebra, I prepared my search terms. It would have beguiled and scared stiff the most hardened of RTE researchers.

I relaxed every muscle, exhaled, cleared my mind of everything but my purpose. And typed:

iraq helium

The first two hits are as follows, the first and second being a nice little backgroung story with a very interesting cast, the third however is very interesting and in my opinion warrants a further investigation.

this third link required the mega-sophisticated "qatar helium AND usa OR america" and hit no. 2 produces:
Hit no. 3 using this second search looked interesting, but it's been rendered.

I'd like to point out that if my suspicion ammounts to more than paranoia on my part, that RTE needs to close.

And even if it is just paranoia on my part well sue me or something, you useless, lazy, and spoonfed parasites. I am sick and very tired of their waiting for the news to come and pass away before they do it the disservice of marginalising and segregating it. And I'd further like to point out that the only difference between the crime of extortion and the "tv license" is that these irrelevant wankers have permission from our supposed and self proclaimed government.

There are many arguments in support of our political system, I'll grant you that.

But you know what?

At each and every election, the majority vote is cast by those who do not vote.

So stick political rhetoric eastwards up your westward-pointing arse.

Our government does not rule by consent, but in spite of it.

This is not a call to arms, it is an opinion, and it is a burden.


Seán Ryan

author by R. Isiblepublication date Tue Dec 13, 2005 00:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

But when you say that the 3rd hit of search #2 was "rendered" I don't think you're correct. All that was going on was that Google indexed the site some time ago and the URL was thus out of date. The info is still there further back in the site (use the "Cached" link):

Ras Laffan helium project starts
* The $115m Ras Laffan helium project in Qatar has come on stream, according to a company statement. The project will supply 600m standard cubic feet per year of liquid helium equivalent, making Qatar one of the world's leading helium producers.
* Qatar: Tuesday, September 06 - 2005 at 10:55

author by R. Isiblepublication date Tue Dec 13, 2005 03:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Guardian carries an article from Richard Norton-Taylor which shows Jack Straw being a letter-of-the-law liar: "Mr Straw also said no records had been found of any later requests from Washington. But ministers have said that no relevant records exist of such flights because the government does not need to keep them"

The article unfortunately fails to mention the role of Tim Hourigan, Ed Horgan and others in this investigation although Tim was quoted in an article yesterday.

Related Link: http://politics.guardian.co.uk/foreignaffairs/story/0,11538,1665912,00.html
author by anonpublication date Tue Dec 13, 2005 04:20author address author phone Report this post to the editors

New Transatlantic Agenda, EU-US meeting on Justice and Home Affairs, details the subjects discussed by the 31 people present.

It's really only hair-splitting but who was our man at that meeting? So we can ask pointed questions?

author by kahootzpublication date Tue Dec 13, 2005 21:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

There is more detail on the Athens meeting and the EU deal in this story:

"A previously unpublished document shows that the European Union secretly agreed in 2003 to let the United States use transit facilities on European soil to transport "criminals."



Taking a trip through the archives....

US Assistant Secretary Jones meets with EU presidency, Troika in Athens
Athens, 22/01/2003 (ANA)


Customary meetings with the EU’s current presidency and the Union’s Troika were on the agenda of US Assistant Secretary of State A. Elizabeth Jones’ itinerary in Athens on Tuesday, as she first met with ministerial-level political directors of the “15” member-states’ foreign ministries followed by talks with the Troika.

Jones’ 24-hour visit comes as Greece assumed the European Union’s six-month rotating presidency at the beginning of the month.

According to sources, the Mideast situation, efforts to gain a peace deal on the divided island of Cyprus by a Feb. 28 deadline, Europe’ security and defense policy, counter-terrorism cooperation and, of course, the Iraq crisis, reportedly dominated talks.

Jones, who heads the State Department’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs since May 2001, and a handful of top State Department officials held their meetings at the coastal seaside resort southeast of Athens that serves as one of the Greek EU presidency’s headquarters.


So we are looking for a " ministerial-level political director" in the foreign ministry....

Dermot Ahern was in Athens that very day but this could be a red herring.

[13] Agriculture Minister Drys meets Irish Fisheries Minister Ahern
Athens, 22/01/2003 (ANA)
Agriculture Minister and EU Council chairman George Drys on Tuesday met with Irish Fisheries Minister Dermot Ahern who referred to the matter of the special status which Ireland has in the North Sea.

A year later, in the lead up to the Irish presidency, the "EU-US Troika JHA" met and these were the Irish people the meeting:

Paul Hickey
Richard Ryan
Jimmy Martin
Hugh Boyle
Martin McDonald
Kevin Dowling (Dept of Foreign Affairs)
Lylia Crossan
Yvonne Furey
Dale Sunderland


author by -publication date Wed Dec 14, 2005 16:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Foreign Minister Diogo Freitas do Amaral on Tuesday denied media reports that CIA planes had used Portuguese airports to transport militant suspects to third countries.

"The Portuguese state has not given any authorisation for landing or overflight of aeroplanes of the kind alleged in the press and that would have violated our legislation and international law," Freitas do Amaral told parliament's constitutional and rights committee.

Pressure has grown on Washington and European governments to explain dozens of flights criss-crossing the continent by CIA planes, some suspected of delivering prisoners to jails in third countries where they may have been mistreated or tortured.

The left-wing opposition had requested that Freitas do Amaral appear before the committee after local media published pictures of aircraft at Portuguese airports, which they alleged were used by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

The weekly magazine Focus reported the planes could have been used by the CIA to carry militant suspects.

Freitas do Amaral said the state had no indication that such planes had ever passed through Portugal under the present government, which came to power early this year, or previous ones."
C/P reuters.

author by iopublication date Sat Dec 17, 2005 09:45author address author phone Report this post to the editors

good article with trackback to November 2 (the start of the story of CIA flights in the commercial media)

Related Link: http://www.swissinfo.org/sen/swissinfo.html?siteSect=111&sid=6325344&cKey=1134768422000
author by Tpublication date Mon Dec 19, 2005 12:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Here's an interesting article today from WSWS reporting that the EU was well aware of what was going on.

It reports:
"Minutes of confidential talks held in Athens on January 22, 2003, prove that EU officials agreed to allow access to their airports for the United States, and also indicate that the EU was well aware that such an agreement made them complicit in possible war crimes. EU officials have confirmed to the media that a full account of the meeting was circulated to all member governments, but all references to the agreement were deleted before the record was made public.

The minutes of the meeting of 31 officials in Athens involved a US delegation headed by a Justice Department representative, and was prepared by Greek officials because Greece held the rotating presidency of the EU at the time. The document was given the title, “New Transatlantic Agenda, EU-US meeting on Justice and Home Affairs.”......

For rest of report see URL below

Related Link: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2005/dec2005/rend-d17_prn.shtml
author by anonpublication date Mon Dec 19, 2005 14:45author address author phone Report this post to the editors


Here is a short account from one of the protesters at Prestwick.

good turnout despite the weather.
Around 30 people turned up in the pouring rain to protest against the use of Prestwick airport as a stop over for CIA torture flights.
The airport's slogan of! Pure dead Brilliant! was changed for the day by protestors holdng up banners saying "Pure dead Torture"
Althought the demo was small a wide variety of groups were represented, from community councils to political parties. Speakers from the SSP in the form of 2 MSPs -Rosemary Byrne and Carolyn Leckie were joined by contributions from the young SNP group and Friends of Refugees as well as members of the Stop the War coalitionand a message from Chris Ballance the Green MSP was read out . There were also people from no political or campaigning group They all agreed to be back at the airport if the flights do not stop, and all will be continuing the campaign until no CIA flights come from Prestwick

http://densden1.blogspot.com/ - continually following the scottish story

Related Link: http://news.scotsman.com/scotland.cfm?id=2428372005
author by Bill - Human Rights Watchpublication date Fri Feb 24, 2006 02:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I keep hearing about "torture" at Guanatanamo Bay, but I have never heard or seen hard evidence. Perhaps we should send them to Long Kesh

author by Eoin Dubskypublication date Fri Feb 24, 2006 12:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Is this the secret treaty to which Michael D. referred a few months ago in the Dail, complaining that the government had made secret deals without Dail approval? It all reminds me of something George Soros said: When he asked a room full of wallstreet big guys ("liberals") what they thought of torture in the 'war on terrorism', they all said they'd rather not know about it.

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