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Cork Alliance Against War - Report on "Dont Attack Iran" Public meeting
anti-war / imperialism |
Monday June 19, 2006 21:59 by Cork Antiwar - Cork Alliance Against War
Report on "Don’t Attack Iran" Public Meeting in Metropole hotel Cork
Over 60 people attended the Cork Alliance Against War Public meeting "Don’t Attack Iran" The meeting followed recent initiatives involving the KINO cinema showing of "The Road to Guantanamo" the public meeting with Guantanamo prisoner Omar Deghayes brother Abu Baker, the US army Veterans speaking tour, and the film/discussion of the documentary “Fallujah – the hidden massacre”
The meeting was addressed by Dr Elaheh Rostami-Povey of the campaign against Military intervention in Iran and John Rose Author and Middle East activist. The meeting was part of national speaking tour on the threat of an attack on Iran organised by the Irish Anti War movement.
Elaheh spoke on the current situation in Iran. She argued that the current issue of the nuclear threat was a smokescreen for another agenda for the US leadership which has been in place ever since the overthrow of the US supported Shah in 1979. Iran’s real crime has been its refusal to bend the knee to the West and the WTO. She pointed out the hypocrisy of Bush on the nuclear issue, as the US which has over 10000 nuclear warheads. She also pointed out that the status of women in the country compared favourably with many Western countries, eg literacy, participation in education and skilled professions , access to contraception, life expectancy etc. However much still needs to be done, but the many vibrant progressive movements in the country would be devastated by an attack or attempt at externally enforced regime change, which would force people back into the hands of the current ruling party. She argued passionately for Anti war activists to do what they can to prevent an attack on the country, especially as the likelihood was that Bush and Rice have already decided to unleash the type of action which could turn the country into another Afghanistan or Iraq.
John Rose addressed the issue of Palestine and Israeli/US aggression in the region. He pointed out that Israel had over 200 warheads, and had kidnapped and imprisoned Mordechai Vanunu who blew the whistle on their nuclear program. Their attacks on Palestinians, their flouting of international law, the spiralling increase of land occupations in the West Bank were all supported by the US. He pointed out that Israel was effectively the US’s watchdog in the are and that it represented the greatest threat to peace in the Middle East.
There followed a lively, interesting and colourful discussion :-). As well as questions for the speakers, there was some interesting suggestions about how to rebuild the anti war movement, what could be done locally and nationally. As well as the familiar topics of big demonstrations and could we/should we move for direct action in Shannon Airport, there was also some valuable suggestions from both new and more experienced activists of how to spark new life into the anti war movement. The majority opinion expressed was that there was no single tactic that should be used to the exclusion of others. The main thing was the need for the movement to be inclusive and imaginative, and where all activists feel comfortable in engaging their chosen field of activity, as well as the need to be open to ideas, to listen to and respect other views.
3 items were publicised at the meeting.
1. Support for the 5 Catholic Workers Movement peace activists up for their 2nd retrial on July 5th.
Prof John Maguire is organising a stage cycle trip to Limerick in the run up to the trial. Full details to be confirmed, contact firstname.lastname@example.org if available.
2. Fundraising gig for Cork Alliance Against War – Sat July 8th. An Cruiscin Lan. List of bands to be confirmed.
3. The case of Omar Deghayes - Guantanaomo prisoner.
The last week has seen the suicide of 3 inmates of Guantanamo Prison. For those who witnessed the horrific torture imposed on inmates on the recent KINO showing of "The Road to Guantamo" this could hardly be a surprise. Abu Deghayes spoke in Cork on the fate of his brother Omar who has been in detention for over 3 years, and who he hasn’t heard of since Oct 2005. Cork Alliance Against war has taken up the case of Omar, as a first step we urge all to off him support write to him at address below, and also to contact local TD’s/minister for justice
160 Camp Delta