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Human Rights in Ireland >>
International Peace Activists in Dublin to Demand that Obama Frees Bradley Manning
anti-war / imperialism |
Tuesday April 05, 2011 18:01 by Free Bradley Manning! Demilitarise Shannon! End the War! more info on events: 0861035091
Obama arrives in Ireland a year after Bradley Manning is taken into custody accused of exposing war crimes!
ALL EVENTS FREE ENTRY, donation appreciated!.............
*FRIDAY APRIL 8 GPO 4pm-6pm: "Yo Obama, Demilitarise Shannon Free Bradley Manning!" Vigil
*FRIDAY 8pm Wynn's Hotel, Middle Abbey St. PUBLIC MEETING: MUSIC with Joe Black & Steve Jacobs, SPEAKERS: Harry Browne, Frank Cordaro, Ciaron O'Reilly
*SATURDAY "Le Chéile"-Donnycarney Community Centre, beside Donnycarney Church,10am-4pm Seminar with Frank Cordaro "What has the radical legacy of Dorothy Day, the Berrigan Brothers, the U.S. Catholic Worker got to offer Ireland in its present state?
*SATURDAY 7.30 p.m. Music Sessiion and Bar in the Brian Baru, 5 Prospect Road, Glasnevin D9
International Peace Activists in Dublin to Demand that Obama Frees
Three international peace activists are in Dublin this week for a series
of events they hope will encourage Irish people to demand of President
Obama to stop the torture of Bradley Manning and end the wars in Iraq
and Afghanistan. Frank Cordaro, Steve Jacobs and Ciaron O'Reilly have
all been activists in the radical pacifist Catholic Worker movement for
over 30 years. The Catholic Worker was founded in New York City in 1933
during the Great Depression by anarchist suffragette and Catholic
convert Dorothy Day.
Day lived among the poor in the original New York Catholic Worker house
of hospitality on The Bowery, working for social justice for 60 years. Since her
death in 1980, the movement has grown, now numbering over 180
autonomous communities and Day has been put forward for canonisation by
the Cardinal of New York.
Like their founder, Cordaro, Jacobs and O'Reilly have lived their lives
among the homeless and spent time in various prisons for nonviolent
anti-war resistance. Jacobs and Cordaro have travelled to Ireland from
their Catholic Worker communities in the United States. O'Reilly is now
resident at the recently opened Giuseppe Conlon House, offering
hospitality serving destitute refugees in London.
"The three of us would agree that our time in prison for nonviolent
anti-war resistance has been the most intimate experience of solidarity
with the poor. Instead of us playing host at our houses of hospitality,
in prison we are the guests of the poor. Prisons are the warehouses of
the poor! We hope non-Catholics and non-workers will also come to these
events here in Ireland that have been organised by local peace and jutice groups. The
Catholic Worker has always been an inclusive movement. At Giuseppe
Conlon House we have Catholics, Quakers, Methodists,'Muslims, Buddhists, Irish & Belgian nuns, artists, marxist academics, anarchist squatters, Labour and Green
Party members volunteering with us to feed the hungry. We accept no
funding from the state and rely on dumpster diving and the kindness of
We are not here in Ireland to convert or recruit for the Catholic church
or the Catholic Worker movement. There are 1.2 billion Catholics -
that's enough of a constituency! We would like the church to return to
the radical message of the Gospels and be a beacon in these times of
economic and military chaos. But as we all well know the church in
southern Ireland has been in bed with the state in recent history. It
is a different context 'for the three of us having grown up
in the U.S., Britain and Australia where Catholicism is multicultural
and we have recent histories of Catholics being persecuted minorities.
We are here on the eve of the Obama visit to Ireland to demand that he
immediately ends the torture of Bradley Manning. Obama has often
referenced Dorothy Day along with Martin Luther King in a litany of
inspiring American figures. We three believe that, Dorothy and Martin
would not be pleased with Obama's present wars on Iraq and Afghanistan
and the torture of Bradley. President Obama arrives in Ireland a year after
Bradley Manning was taken into custody in Iraq. Bradley was then transferred
to Kuwait and is now being tortured in Quantico U.S. Marine Base, Virginia, U.S.A.
Bradley is in a military brig accused of speaking truth to power. We see this visit
to Ireland by Obama, on the aniversary of Bradley's loss of freedom, as an
opportunity for the Irish people to speak some truth to power!
Bradley Manning's last point of departure before entering the war zone
and subsequently military prison was Shannon Airport, Ireland. We ask
the Irish government to return to its constitutional commitments of neutrality
and close the de facto U.S. military base at Shannon. Like most of the U.S.
troops that participated in the illegal, immoral and self defeating invasion and
ongoing occupation of Iraq, Bradley's point of departure to a destroyed
life was the small departure lounge at Shannon."
O'Reilly, along with four other Catholic Workers known as the "Pit Stop
Ploughshares", was arrested at Shannon Airport in 2003 after disarming a
U.S. war plane en route to the invasion of Iraq. The five were charged
with $U.S.2 1/2 million criminal damage and put through three trials at
Dublin's Four Courts. They were acquitted unanimously by a jury in 2006. The
acquittal was the subject of secret cables from the U.S. embassy in
Dublin exposed by WikiLeaks in December 2010.
Support for the Catholic Workers on trial in Dublin came from people of
a wide range of backgrounds, various faith and non-faith traditions. At
the first trial, many members of the Catholic Worker movement travelled
from the U.S. and Europe to support the defendants. Bishop
Gumbleton of Detroit, actor Martin Sheen, former U.N. assistant
secretary general Denis Halliday, Japanese Budhist monks, Irish artists
and activists, American and British combat veterans joined in the events
around the trials, some offering testimony to the court.
O'Reilly states, "Frank, Steve and I know what it is like to be an
anti-war prisoner. We know from experience the significance of the
smallest act of human solidarity to the prisoner. These are the reasons
why we are here in Ireland. We are here for Bradley Manning, as an act
of solidarity. As they say in the U.S., what comes around goes around!
We are here for the 1 million Iraqis who have lost their lives in the
invasion of their country. We are here for the 4,000 young Americans
who passed through Shannon Airport to their deaths in Iraq, for the
20,000 who will never walk or talk again. The U.S. and Irish
governments had the cunning not to ship the American dead and wounded
back through Shannon. Those lifeless and destroyed bodies were returned
home through Saudi Arabia and Germany.
Bradley has spent over 300 days in isolation and sensory deprivation;
if you read his conditions of confinement you can only
conclude that he is being tortured. Ireland has recently been complicit
in torture with its refuelling of C.I.A. rendition flights at Shannon
Airport. If we call ourselves a peace movement, we owe proactive
solidarity to Bradley Manning, Michael Lyons and other nonviolent
resisters in the British and U.S. military standing up against this war.
Bradley Manning is 5' 2" and weighs just 105 lbs. He is a giant of a
man. He is a hero for our desperate times. Bradley Manning is in prison;
he may never get out alive, for allegedley exposing the truth about the
nature of these wars. He is being punished reporting a crime, namely the
slaying of Reuters journalists Nimir Nor-Eldeen, his driver Saeed Chmagh
and eight other unarmed journalists from a helicopter gunship
attack from a from a distance of a mile. Also the murder of
Matasher Tomal and the wounding of his two children, as he paused from
the daily school run to see if he could help the wounded from the first
attack. View this footage, decide what crime has been committed and
how you are going to respond
Please join us in Dublin to send a message to Obama when he visits
Collateral murder footage that Bradley Manning is accused of releasing: