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Cork Protests in ‘Disgust’ at Israel War Crimes

category cork | anti-war / imperialism | news report author Sunday January 04, 2009 08:33author by Free Palestine - Ógra Shinn Féinauthor email osfnational at yahoo dot ie Report this post to the editors

Members of the MacCurtain/Doherty (Cork City) and the W.I.T. cumann of Ógra Shinn Féin attended the Irish Palestinian Solidarity rally in Cork's Daunt Square on Saturday the 3rd of January, as Ógra Shinn Féin continued its campaign to heighten awareness of the situation and to campaign for an immediate ceasefire.

The protest was well attended by a great variety of groups on the left, and there was quite a sizable crowd, bringing traffic to a standstill as they marched up Patrick’s Street.
cork3.jpg

Cork Ógra spokesperson Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire had this to say,

“It was great to see such a good turn out for this protest. I think it shows that the people of Cork are disgusted by the despicable behavior of the Israeli government that such a number of people showed up, and there was a great reaction from people on the streets as well.”

"What’s going on in Palestine is criminal. The Irish media want us to focus on the actions of Hamas, as being terrorist. In eight years Hamas' rockets fired in response to a blockade on vital fuel, food, and medication, have killed twenty people. In only eight days Israel has killed over 400 and is now engaged in a ground attack which will massacre many more. Who are the terrorists?”

There will be another Protest next Saturday in Cork at 1pm in Daunt Square. Bígí Linn!

Related Link: http://www.ipsc.ie

cork4.jpg

Boycott Israeli Goods
Boycott Israeli Goods

author by pauline russellpublication date Sun Jan 04, 2009 12:38author email paulinarussell at hotmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

To the people who demonstrated in Cork. Way to go.
I will keep an eye on the Irish newspapers for continuing coverage.
If anyone has information on Irish support for Palestine e-mail me and I will forward information on to other countries

author by ggpublication date Mon Jan 05, 2009 16:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

there is an organising meeting tonight in the slainte bar on patricks street at 8pm ,

author by Kate O'Connellpublication date Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:49author email herself.there at gmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

I was delighted with the turn out for the protest in Cork. It was refreshing to see so many concerned Irish citizens. However there were a few incidents the I think jeopardize the legitimacy the protest and to be honest if they happen again make it unlike that I (and probably others) will go back.

The first incident was the burning of the Isreali flag. My understanding of the protest was that in was an anti-war protest aimed at promoting peace and human rights in the middle east. This was an act of violence. You cant carry the flag of one nation and burn the flag of another while claiming you are trying to promote peace. Regardless actions like this will undermine the protest and alienate a large number of concerned individuals. I know I don't want to be associated with these action.

The second incident took place as we walked back down Patrick Street. We were asked to sit on the ground by people with megaphones, which we did (I thought it might be a die-in or some other alternative form of protest). Over the megaphone we were all then encouraged to all start chanting "Allah Akbar". I have no issue with people practicing their faith or even religious protest but i felt the protest had been hiijacked at this stage as did many others and we just stood up. I would be just as outraged if someone started a decade of the rosary. It just wasn't appropriate!..

I wonder what the IPSC thought of these actions, do they see how this two incidents if they are repeated could erode rather than build on the momentum that the protests seem to now have.

author by Johnpublication date Tue Jan 06, 2009 23:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thanks to the other three posters.
I wanted to add my impressions to help build up the picture.
I found it very emotional to be there and heartening to share the streets with such a diversity. I saw the burning of the flag and I while I can understand it arouses strong feelings I can clearly see why it is done and I would not condemn it. As I understand it the man who burnt the flag was a Palestinian. Neither you nor I can begin to imagine what that man and his family have been through. I would imagine if I was watching my homeland being destroyed and my country people killed I would feel like burning a flag too and quite possibly more than that.
Burning a flag is not the same as burning a human being, nor a human beings home and does not have to have anything to do with such though i would imagine that if such suffering, felt for long enough and on a large enough scale was left unaddressed it might well make people more likely to commit violent acts. In a manner not unlike the way in which the Israelis are passing on their suffering to the Palestinians.
We are dealing with a cycle of violence here on a global scale. Our job is to slow it down and halt it. We won't do that by condemning the pain expressed by people who have suffered in that. Somehow or other we have to stand outside it and extend compassion to those caught up in it. They could be us.

I was well into the sit down. The last time there was a sit down protest in Pana was before the Iraq war back in 2003. It happened in about the same place also.
It is an expression of collective power to change the way things are, but we have to go a lot further than just blocking traffic for a minute or two if we want to stop a war.
I was quite close to the front of the march where most of the middle eastern folk were and I heard the chanting but I didn't hear it as Allah Akhbar. Not being familiar with Arabic I don't know what was being chanted. Anyone else who was on the march able to enlighten us?

Something else I noticed that shouldn't be blown out of proportion but shouldn't be ignore either was the flickers of hostility that were expressed towards the march. About a third of the way up Pana for the first one I noticed a guy started hurling abuse at the march calling us self righteous fascists. A fella down near the end managed to engage him in a debate after which point he de-escalated to calling us simply self-righteous until he was escorted away by two gards.
Later on on the way back a gang of about 8-12 lads I estimate in their mid to late teens lobbed a full orangeade bottle at the front of the march which was predominantly (exclusively?) made up of non-white non-Irish nationals. it was thrown back once and came back once more before the lads legged it. Later on a couple of lads about the same age tried to grab the microphone off one of the organisers before running off.

The reason i mention these instances is because I am well aware that in this economic situation some misguided folk may seek to blame others for their problems when they are not the real problem at all and we all know where that leads if it's left get out of hand don't we?

At the meeting in the Slainte bar this issue was brought up and a few ideas were put forward to facilitate the getting together of people from different cultures in the city. We need to get to know each other and build up a lot of trust very fast right now. Rather than looking to received opinion for our experience of people from Iraq, from Palestine, Muslims, Jews and all we need to step outside our fears, reach out the hand of friendship and get to know them for ourselves and let them get to know us. That's the way to begin to break a cycle of violence. Are we big enough though?

author by cropbeyepublication date Wed Jan 07, 2009 18:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors



Was there all right and I agree that the sit down coninsided with the chanting by accident more than design.

In fact I think that the sit down should have lasted longer.

The guy (acting alone)with the loud haler was definatly saying Allah Akhbar or I think Allo'ugh Akhabar which ammounts to the same thing.

In fairness I think he wasn't attempting to get everyone else to join in the chant but it was inappropriae as sit downs or die ins are

usually done is silence. I think if people want to do some sort of act of Moslem prayer they should wait until the end of the march

and do it in a quite corner where people can migrate if they so choose..

author by Rashidapublication date Sat Jan 10, 2009 23:39author address author phone Report this post to the editors

howdy folks,

While I wasnt there my husband was and a number of other friends from our mosque and faith groups. There was no prayer by the way. What you guys deem inappropriate is normal for muslims i.e. we may say dua, (supplications )etc. Islam is a holistic way of life so we dont really keep it seperate if you know what i mean, so it is perfectly normal at a gathering or alone for that matter to engage in dhiker (rememberence of Allah SWT) . All practicing muslims including our brothers and sisters in Gaza would find this perfectly natural. And because religion is not seperate from our everyday habits, conversations etc. Even the way we say hello - As salam alaikum - waliakum as salam -------- it simply will come into it.

To the person that felt they were encouraged to join in - please dont let that be a deterrent to your contribution to future protest activities. Granted it is probably really bizarre to hear that when you are not used to it, but if you look into it , or at least be tolerant, I'm sure you would understand a little more about the religion, and who knows you may get to meet some great muslims who might be able to explain things to you. New experiences are always great - at least I think they are anyways.

Lakum deenukum waliya deeni , (To you be your religion and to me be my religion)

PS
If anyone is organising intercultural / interfaith meetings etc. which is a fab idea, please keep in mind that if you wanted to include muslims, try to keep in mind that practicing muslims dont head into bars/pubs - so possibly coffee house or something to that effect.

author by B2Bpublication date Sun Jan 11, 2009 00:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The first incident was the burning of the Isreali flag. My understanding of the protest was that in was an anti-war protest aimed at promoting peace and human rights in the middle east. This was an act of violence. You cant carry the flag of one nation and burn the flag of another while claiming you are trying to promote peace.(c)

Just trying to understand what does it mean - burning the flag on the street. Does this mean that demonstrants deny Israel's right to exist on the map of Middle East? I'm affraid it is the case. So, I cannot consider them keen to stop circle of violence and seeking peace for both nations.

author by Paddypublication date Mon Jan 12, 2009 01:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I was at that march too.

Regarding the plastic bottle being throw once or twice, it was a gang of kids, some of whom were quite young, maybe early secondary school? They could have been throwing stuff at a nurses march for all they cared. They passed me as they went off towards the cornmarket with one of em asking his buddies 'where 'da f&%k is Gaza boys?'

That one person supporting Israel is a regular feature on the circut also. I dont know why he bothers. He's always vastly outnumbered anyway.

author by Reporter12publication date Mon Jan 12, 2009 16:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Israel dammed with growing evidence of White phosphorous shells being used against Gaza's captive population. Israeli spokepersons have denied that the M825A1marked shells stacked beside the artillery units pounding Gaza are White Phosphorous but the denial rings hollow. The reference No. is well known and notorious :

http://www.google.ie/search?hl=en&q=M825A1&btnG=Google+...meta=

Furthermore, the victims of Israeli crimes are now presenting with strange deep smouldering burns to doctors in Gaza who feel more and more sure that these are from WP attacks carried out by firing the illegal weapon over the heads of the civilian populations.

http://www.commondreams.org/print/36223

--- There were indications last night that Palestinian civilians have been injured by the bombs, which burn intensely. Hassan Khalass, a doctor at al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, told The Times that he had been dealing with patients who he suspected had been burnt by white phosphorus. Muhammad Azayzeh, 28, an emergency medical technician in the city, said: "The burns are very unusual. They don't look like burns we have normally seen. They are third-level burns that we can't seem to control."

Victims with embedded WP particles in their flesh have to have the affected areas flushed with water. Particles that cannot be removed with tweezers are covered with a saline-soaked dressing.

Nafez Abu Shaban, the head of the burns unit at al-Shifa hospital, said: "I am not familiar with phosphorus but many of the patients wounded in the past weeks have strange burns. They are very deep and not like burns we used to see." ---

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