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T - Tue Feb 02, 2016 23:11
Alternative Analysis and Conclusions to the Report of the Joint Oireachtas Committee of Inquiry into the Banking Crisis By Joe Higgins TD
Forget the official Banking Inquiry report because Joe Higgins has written a much more better one and it asks the rights questions and gets to the heart of the matter by putting the whole saga in its proper context -something which the official report couldn't thing as it would mean asking fundamental questions. Indeed the inquriy itself and official report have been steeped in controversary with allegations of coverup because of numerous reports of key officials and whistleblowers in the regulator office and central bank were ignored and their evidence never making into the inquiry. The whistleblower made a formal complaint under the Protected Disclosures Act and (Village Magazine) "outlining a range of detailed concerns about how the Central Bank and some of its legal representatives were omitting huge swathes of vital documents, redacting many of the most crucial pieces of evidence, and delaying release of vital material until it was too late to use them in briefings for public hearings ? in at least one case handing them over 24 hours before a scheduled interview about them."
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Trajectory of Irish Banks

Forget the official Banking Inquiry report because Joe Higgins has written a much more better one and it asks the rights questions and gets to the heart of the matter by putting the whole saga in its proper context -something which the official report couldn't thing as it would mean asking fundamental questions. Indeed the inquriy itself and official report have been steeped in controversary with allegations of coverup because of numerous reports of key officials and whistleblowers in the regulator office and central bank were ignored and their evidence never making into the inquiry. The whistleblower made a formal complaint under the Protected Disclosures Act and (Village Magazine) "outlining a range of detailed concerns about how the Central Bank and some of its legal representatives were omitting huge swathes of vital documents, redacting many of the most crucial pieces of evidence, and delaying release of vital material until it was too late to use them in briefings for public hearings ? in at least one case handing them over 24 hours before a scheduled interview about them."

Related Links: Joe Higgin's Banking Inquiry Report - Jan 2016 | VillageMagazine: Cover-up upon cover-up. Banking Inquiry to be blown apart | Joe Higgins website | Indy Links: The Fake Banking Enquiry. More Cynical Theatre For The Downtrodden Irish Masses? | Inside the Anglo Irish - The secret tapes | Audio from Conor McCabe on Banker and Rancher Interests in the Modern Irish Economy


There was also reports of PR firms hired to coach officials on how to avoid difficult and probing questions and phrase answers for damage limitation. It seems there were also key legal firms guiding the whole process. The Village magazine (http://www.villagemagazine.ie/) last month reported on much of this.

Nevertheless, coverup aside and if there was to be at least one major article you wanted to read about the property bubble and banking crash in order to truly understand the dynamics and forces at work, then this report would be the one to read whether you are Left leaning or not.

Joe Higgins who was on Oireachtas Banking Inquriy Committee, released his report on Weds 27th Jan and at 146 pages long it is a huge amount of work and it is clear this has been a very important topic to Deputy Higgins and goes to the core of what Joe sees wrong with the capitalist system.

The first 10 pages of the report consists of basically a summary of facts and findings of the inquiry itself and Joe Higgins analysis of what happened and why. However the meat of the report is contained in the 6 chapters.

Introduction ?
Chapter 1 ? The Irish bubble in a Global Context
Chapter 2 ? The Bubble and the Banks
Chapter 3 ? The Relationships beneath the Bubble
Chapter 4 ? The ?Soft Landing? to the Crash
Chapter 5 ? The Slow Road to the Guarantee
Chapter 6 ? After the Guarantee: the Cost of the Crisis

Here are some of the headings in a few bullet points from the summary of JH's Report


  • Extreme Profiteering driven by corporate greed drove the property bubble and caused the crash
  • Bubble Governments of Taoiseach Bertie Ahern, Tánaiste Mary Harney, Finance Ministers McCreevy & Cowen served the interests of bankers/developers Not those of ordinary people
  • Enda Kenny, Fine Gael Leader, was a silent non Opposition
  • Dismal failure of Central Bank/Financial Regulator rooted in deregulation mindset of Fianna Fail/PD Government; Regulator must take full measure of responsibility but political establishment must not be allowed to scapegoat
  • Government supposed to put interest of ordinary citizens first but FF/PD Government betrayed that trust to serve interest of bankers/speculators
  • The Reckless Behaviour that inflated the bubble and caused the crash should have been criminalised
  • Politicians, Bankers, Bondholders and Developers responsible for the bubble should have been facing jail instead of golden pensions:
  • Banking & Home Provision should not be subject to exploitation and profiteering but should be public services
  • The soft landing alibi - a big lie
  • Significant sections of the Media not only glamourised and cheerled the bubble but were actors in it


And rather than paraphrase the report here are some important extracts.

Witness after witness at the Banking Inquiry, including bankers and developers themselves, attested to the kind of cut throat competition between them for profit that drove the reckless lending practices that inflated the property/banking bubble and led to the disastrous economic crash. Dermot Gleeson, the Chairman of AIB from 2003 to 2009 testified as to how his bank aped the methods of Anglo Irish Bank which was lending recklessly to developers and raking in major profits. He maintained that they had a problem of: Anglo being held up to us as an exemplar?Commentators in Ireland and abroad repeatedly said,
?Anglo is the best bank. Why can?t you be more like Anglo?? It was determined by one international consultancy to be the best bank of its size in the world. It was the darling not just of the Irish but of European stock exchanges generally?

Ethna Tinney, who was an independent Non-Executive Director of EBS 2000-2007, told the Inquiry:
The belief that there were substantial profits to be made for the society from these developments led us to emulate our peers?There was a sort of feeding frenzy as the banks clambered over one another to get a piece of the action, especially as new foreign banks had entered the market as competitors?There was a sense that we were becoming a minnow as INBS expanded its lending and started to post profits that were up to five times the profits we were posting.

Ms Tinney was highly critical of practices such as securitisation referring to herself having an image of it ?as a shark eating its own entrails? She further claimed that ?The banks have absolutely no sense of guilt about what they have done. And if left unchecked, they are going to do it all over again.?

The extreme drive for profits was encapsulated in the figures given to the Inquiry whereby the six banks eventually covered by the Guarantee, increased lending exponentially from ?120 billion in 2000 to almost ?400 billion by 2007, raked in ?25 billion in profits from 2002 to 2008 and paid those banks Chief Executives an astounding total of ?71 million in salaries and bonuses. This was then adversely mirrored in the disastrous ?65 billion these banks lost in the crash.

The political leaders of the Fianna Fail/ Progressive Democrat Government 1997 -2007 relentlessly pushed the deregulation in financial services that resulted in this competitive race to the bottom in banking standards as major banks vied for profits. Taoiseach Bertie Ahern told an Irish Banking Federation lunch in March 2006; ?the Government is very conscious of its role in assisting you to maintain a healthy bottom line . . .there is a need to be more balanced and less negative about the essential services you provide.?

In March 2007, Mr Ahern was positively touting Ireland as a deregulated state for bankers when he told a breakfast meeting of the Financial Services Industry in New York, ?Our commitment to supporting foreign direct investment is absolute. Ireland is very lightly regulated compared with most of our European colleagues.?

Brian Cowen who became Finance Minister in 2004, was as enthusiastic as his Leader. In a speech to the Institute of Bankers in Ireland annual dinner on 2 November 2006, he said:
But, in my view it is the innovation coming from within the sector which is the most remarkable driver of change. Increasingly sophisticated derivative products seem to be arriving daily as a sector seeks to become ever more professional in the way it manages and hedges its risks and chases after that elusive higher yield.

Billionaire Warren Buffet described the same derivative products as ?time bombs? and ?weapons of mass destruction.

Brian Cowen continued in what can only be described as an embarrassingly obsequious tone:
Of course, not all of these brave new initiatives are successful. It?s a hard game, but there?s all to play for. Of course, that?s easy for me to say because you are players on the field and I?m just an ardent supporter on the sidelines. I will continue to wear your colours. Mr Cowen?s predecessor, Charlie McCreevy, who was Finance Minister from 1997 to 2004 agreed at the Inquiry that he was a ?champion of the free capitalist markets?. He told the Financial Regulator in 2005 (now as EU Commissioner): Don?t try to protect everyone from every possible accident. . . .many of us in this room . . . were part of the ?unregulated generation? ? the generation that has produced some of the best risk takers, problem solvers and inventors.

The biggest political party in opposition in the Dail during the bubble was Fine Gael. At his appearance at the Inquiry, Enda Kenny, Fine Gael Leader from 2002, wasn?t in a position to point to a single instance where he had demanded restrictions or regulation on the profiteering that was rampant in the property market.


The Reckless Behaviour that inflated the bubble and caused the crash should have been criminalised
Politicians, Bankers, Bondholders and Developers responsible for the bubble should have been facing jail instead of golden pensions

It is often bemoaned that a miniscule number of former bankers - and no developers - have been charged with any crimes arising out of the blowing up of a gargantuan bubble of property speculation up to 2008 that saw six Irish banks shovelling out massive loans and reaping massive short term profits before an inevitable and catastrophic crash that devastated the lives of countless people in this State.

This is usually put down to a lack of any will among the political, economic and legal establishment to call former bastions of the same establishment to account. While this is undoubtedly true, the much more fundamental reason is that the vast majority of transactions that inflated the bubble over more than ten years, and saw fabulous short term profits for speculators and bankers, were quite legal. It was, and still is, legal to engage in the most outrageous speculation in urban building land. It was quite legal, as Quinlan Private did in 2001, to buy 11 acres of building land in Stillorgan for ?32 million on behalf of a group of rich individuals and, without putting a brick on top of another, to sell it four years later for ?85 million, a speculative gain of ?53 million.

It was perfectly legal to put such speculative profits on the shoulders of young people buying homes and shackle them into mortgages of thirty five or forty years duration with an horrific level of monthly mortgage payments. Because this was how ?the markets? worked and a consistent majority in the legislature politically prostrated before those markets, powerful institutions and individuals were fully within the law in profiteering at will even if this meant that one of the most basic human needs, a modest place to live, was denied to very many and, for others, came at an appalling cost in human terms including the stress of trying to pay for the speculative gains of developers and bankers and beyond them the bondholders and the financiers in the European financial markets, - faceless, unelected and unaccountable to those they exploited.

The actions of the bankers, developers and the bondholders who financed them to inflate the bubble were blatantly anti-social. They caused enormous stress to a generation of young home purchasers during the bubble. They skewed the economy toward parasitic speculation and away from productive investment. As the bubble inevitably crashed they caused traumatic dislocation with savage cuts in public services, massive unemployment, the forcing out of their country of hundreds of thousands of working people.

The actions that caused this massive destruction were largely legal. By any standards they should have been seriously criminal. Had these activities been subject to laws that would have protected the big majority in society, all the central actors in the inflation of the bubble from bankers to developers to financing bondholders and the politicians that facilitated them, would have been facing criminal sanction and imprisonment instead of enjoying gold plated pensions.

As the Public Hearings were broadcast and the wide cast of bubble and crash actors came before the Committee, it was remarked to me again and again by ordinary people who were the victims of their actions, how much it galled to see how utterly immune they were to any legal sanction because the whole system had been legally rigged in their interests.


Banking & Home Provision should not be subject to exploitation and profiteering but should be public services

The disaster of the bubble and crash scream out that critical industries such as banking and the provision of homes should not be the subject of speculation, exploitation and profiteering by private interests. Hundreds of thousands of people are still suffering very severe hardship because that was, and is, the case until now. The horrific current housing and homelessness crises is a direct result. Banking and the provision of homes should be public services run in the interest of the needs of society as a whole.

The soft landing alibi - a big lie

The major excuse given to the Inquiry by developers, regulators, establishment politicians and international agencies for not taking strong action at any stage to stop the madness was that one and all expected a ?soft landing? to the property boom. The implication is that had such an end to the boom occurred, the policies and practices they followed would have been vindicated. That means it would have been fine to gouge a generation of young workers with a fourfold increase in the price of a new home in ten years necessitating them taking out 35 to 40 year mortgages with draconian levels of monthly repayments - all for the basic human right of a modest home.

More fundamentally, however, to believe that all expected a ?soft landing? is to believe a big lie. To believe this, you have to ignore all the past history from all over the world of previous property bubbles and busts, including recent crises in the US, UK and Scandinavia, as well as models used by the industry itself of the property market cycle. An alternative explanation is that bankers and property speculators did know on some level that a crash was inevitable but were so blinded by the huge profits they were making that hardly any of them ?got out on time'. Evidence presented to the Inquiry showed some estate agents were warning their clients off Irish commercial property from 2005, while from 2004 many of the big developers were diversifying outside of Ireland ? which was one reason a third of the loans that ended up in NAMA were for commercial property overseas. Even Anglo made some half-hearted efforts to rein in Irish development lending in 2006.

Meanwhile an elite consensus was constructed around the fairy-tale of a ?soft landing? by property and banking interests and their political supporters, with the eager assistance of a media dependent on property advertising. This encouraged first-time buyers to keep taking out huge mortgages and helped keep the bubble going for bankers and developers until the last possible minute. Dissenters who called the crash were pilloried as unpatriotic ?merchants of doom? ?talking down the economy?. Taoiseach Bertie Ahern even said they ?should go off and commit suicide?.

The Central Bank was less crassly offensive but equally committed to not ?frightening the horses?. Imprisoned by the ?pro-cyclical boom/bust nature of capitalism, all concerned downplayed the crash for fear that taking their heads out of the sand and admitting the truth would cause a loss of ?confidence?, spread ?contagion? and undermine profits. This profoundly undemocratic aspect of the capitalist economic cycle is of course treated as the natural order of things, no more avoidable than the weather. Like ancient peoples prayed for the coming of the rains or the ending of the floods, today we pray the ?confidence fairy? will charm the gods of the markets.

Our Analysis and Conclusions Causes of the Crisis - International context, Chapter 1
  • *A key context in the creation of the massive financial/property bubble in Ireland up to 2007 and subsequent crash was the policy of successive Irish governments in developing the State as an international haven for capital from higher tax and intrusive regulation. This allowed the ballooning of loans from the European financial markets into the Irish banks as they competed with each other in reducing credit control as these funds were passed on for speculative development.
  • *The debate about whether the crisis was primarily home-grown or international in nature is misconceived. The crash resulted from Ireland?s peripheral insertion in the global capitalist system at a time of crisis. Ireland was particularly badly hit because of its over-reliance on Foreign Direct Investment and underdevelopment of the indigenous economy, which led it to deregulate finance to attract in foreign capital and also to over-investment in non-productive areas of the economy i.e. property.

The Property Bubble, the Banks, and the Relationships Beneath the Bubble Chapters 2 & 3
  • * The fundamental basis of the property bubble was that greed for super profits by major landholders, bankers and developers was facilitated by the capitalist ethos underpinning the legislation governing banking, land speculation and construction development. *Private corporations, land speculators and speculators on the financial markets were enabled to put profit maximisation before the needs of the majority in society.
  • *The constant of a right wing majority in Dáil Éireann, ideologically committed to the capitalist market system, before and during the bubble, meant that legislation enacted facilitated private greed at huge cost to social needs.
  • *The crisis was primarily caused by profit-seeking, speculation and profiteering by banks, builders and property developers, both in Ireland and internationally. This led to reckless lending and a giant credit bubble that drove up the cost of development land, construction costs and house prices
  • *Commercial property lending to developers, builders and property investors rather than borrowing by ordinary owner-occupier mortgage holders was what brought down the banks. AIB, BOI & Anglo had combined commercial property loans of ?8.63 billion in 1998. By 2008 the combined total was ?146.7 billion ? an increase of 1,600%
  • *Profit-seeking led to destructive competition between banks as they sought to win market share from each other. Competition led to banks cutting interest rates and making lower margins so that the only way to compensate was to recklessly increase the volume of lending and make riskier loans. All this was exacerbated by the entry of foreign banks into the Irish market whose large overseas businesses meant they could afford to make a loss temporarily in the Irish market to enable them to win market share.
  • *Competitive deregulation within the financial services sector was an aggravating factor. This was pushed by government to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) and boost the profits of domestic banks and Irish capital. The banks themselves progressively cut their lending standards to compete with their rivals.
  • *Lobbying by the financial institutions had a strong influence on deregulation. The banks in general had excessive influence over government and Central Bank/Financial Regulator policy
  • *The dominant neoliberal ideology dictated that the government should not interfere in markets apart from encouraging competition between financial institutions. As the Nyberg Report puts it: ?. . .the paradigm of efficient markets provided the intellectual basis for the assumption that financial markets, left essentially to themselves, would tend to be both stable and efficient.? This led to light touch regulation also referred to a ?principles based? regulation. This really meant ?trusting? the banks to regulate themselves ? all leading to the promotion of even fiercer competition, thereby facilitating the banks? profit-seeking and the growth of a credit bubble.
  • *Ireland?s peripheral status within the European Union was shown by successive government?s subservience to the ECB even when its diktats placed a huge burden on working people.
  • *A small group of capitalists profited from the bubble and caused the crash.
  • *An excess of liquidity ? cash ? on global money markets because of rising wealth inequality fuelled the property bubble and then caused the crash by giving banks the funds with which to recklessly expand their lending in pursuit of higher profits. *Excessive government spending was not a cause of the crisis. Ireland had the lowest rate of public spending as a percentage of GDP in the EU-27 throughout the pre-crisis period.
  • *Property-related tax breaks which were really just tax shelters that incentivised investment in unproductive activity, sucking investment away from economically or socially useful purposes were an important direct factor in the bubble and the crash. Neither the bubble nor the crash would have been as large without them but there would still have been a bubble and a crash, as happened internationally.
  • *Over-reliance on property-related taxes was another factor in the severity of the crash. However, the restructuring of the tax base since has shifted this cost onto workers and the poor, rather than increasing taxes on corporations and the wealthy, which are more ?sustainable? sources of taxes from the perspective of the majority of the population. *The media?s dependence on property advertising, capitalist ownership, neoliberal ideological conformity and shared interests and identification with capitalist interests led it to cheerlead the bubble and to largely ignore signs of the oncoming crash.

Contents of the Report
  • Introduction ?       pages 1-11
  • Chapter 1 ? The Irish bubble in a Global Context       pages 12-39
    • Globalisation
    • The EU?s role in globalisation
    • Financialisation
    • Increasing Inequality
    • Neoliberal ideolog

  • Chapter 2 ? The Bubble and the Banks       pages 40-67
    • Introduction
    • Bill Black?s Recipe: How Banks Make Profits and Bankers Get Rich
    • Grow like Crazy!
    • ?through property lending
    • ?Make Terrible Quality Loans?
    • The Growth of Commercial Property Lending
    • ?especially development lending
    • Use Pathetic Underwriting! Cut costs & credit standard

  • Chapter 3 ? The Relationships beneath the Bubble       pages 68-95
    • The Property Industry: Where did all the money come from and Who was Getting Rich?
    • Land speculation is central to developers? profits
    • The property investment pyramid scheme
    • Boom & Bust: The Capitalist Property Cycle
    • Too Blinded by Profit to See the Bubble
    • The Structural Influence of Elite Relationships
    • Lobbying & Direct Policy Influence
    • The Influence of Banks
    • The Influence of the Property & Construction Sector
    • Negative Impacts of the Bubble on ordinary peopl

  • Chapter 4 ? The ?Soft Landing? to the Crash       pages 96-108
    • The Tipping Point in 2005
    • The authorities ignore the bubble
    • ?Don?t frighten the horses? ? ?Pray to the Confidence Fairy?
    • The Media
    • Late Summer/Autumn 2007: The Crisis Begins

  • Chapter 5 ? The Slow Road to the Guarantee       pages 109-132
    • The state prepares for a crisis
    • August 2007
    • October:
    • November
    • December
    • January 2008
    • February
    • March
    • April-September: The Golden Circle goes into Overdrive
    • September 200

  • Chapter 6 ? After the Guarantee: the Cost of the Crisis       pages 133-146
    • NAMA
    • The Troika Bailout & Not Burning the Bondholders
    • The Cost of the Banking Crisis
    • Austerity
    • Restructuring the tax system to take more from workers and less from capital
    • The Impact of Austerity Cuts and Tax Increases

And From - Chapter 2 ? The Bubble and the Banks

From the late 1990s to the crash, a ?world-beating property bubble?116 was blown up in Ireland based on an enormous expansion of credit, particularly from 2003-2008 (Figures 2.1 & 2.2), and growing inequality of wealth. The one and only motive for this lending growth was profit. According to the Nyberg Report:
High profit growth was the primary strategic focus of the covered banks?Since the potential for high growth (in assets) and resultant profitability in Ireland were to be found primarily in the property market, bank lending became increasingly concentrated there.
Within property lending, it was commercial property lending118 to builders, developers, landowners, commercial landlords and other property investors that caused the banks to fail. By 2008, the banks had given out an incredible ?158bn in commercial property loans119 ? equivalent to Ireland?s entire Gross National Income in 2008120. Traditionally, mortgage lending had been the largest activity for Irish banks but by 2008, commercial property lending had become predominant (Figures 2.3-2.6)121. This was where the vast majority of the banks? losses came from and where the vast majority of the bank bailout went. The banks with the most commercial property loans made the biggest losses and got the biggest bailouts


The full PDF Report is attached at the end of this article or alternatively is also available here:
http://antiausterityalliance.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016...y.pdf

See also Village Magazine for Jan 12th
Cover-up upon cover-up. Banking Inquiry to be blown apart
http://www.villagemagazine.ie/index.php/2016/01/cover-u...er-up

1 of Indymedia - Thu Jan 28, 2016 20:38
March from Liberty Hall to Moore Street - #SaveMooreStreetfromDemolition
#SaveMooreStreetfromDemolition This is an important call to you to take part in this crucial show of support of the 1916 Moore Street Markets Battlefield site, on this Saturday. We are asking people to come in 1916 uniform or clothes, to bear one of the flags of the 1916 Easter Rising, to tell and bring your friends and comrades. #SaveMooreStreet Please share this post.

The march assembles at Liberty Hall at 1pm on Sat 30th and then proceeds to Moore Street.

Government sides with Corporate Creed to wipe out our revolutionary memory for good. Later this year or next they will sign away ALL our sovereign rights via the EU-US TTIP treaty
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#SaveMooreStreetfromDemolition This is an important call to you to take part in this crucial show of support of the 1916 Moore Street Markets Battlefield site, on this Saturday. We are asking people to come in 1916 uniform or clothes, to bear one of the flags of the 1916 Easter Rising, to tell and bring your friends and comrades. #SaveMooreStreet Please share this post.

The march assembles at Liberty Hall at 1pm on Sat 30th and then proceeds to Moore Street.

Related Links: Ministerial Direction. -No Access to Moore Street | Save Moore Street Campaign Facebook | Save Moore Street From Demolition - Twitter | Minister officially refuses to give independent conservation experts access to inspect Moore St. terrace | Moore Street dispute erupts | ?We want the Republic?: Rally to support Occupy Moore Street protesters | Minister's Moore St plan does not protect entire historic 1916 terrace
Previous Indy coverage: Development To Spell The End Of Moore Street Market? -Nov 2007 | James Connolly's Grandson In Fresh Call To Save 16 Moore Street -Aug 2005 | through streets broad & narrow: crying five for 50, and ten for a pound. The end of Moore Street? -May 2005


We urge as many people as possible to attend to event because this probably the last chance we have not to turn this into another Wood Quay episode where our history was destroyed and concreted over. A huge shopping centre is planned for the Moore Street site by developers -the same kind of people who helped wreck the country and put their own greed and profit first and they are being facilitated by the FG government who for once and for all want to bury any memory of the rebels and their revolutionary ideas.

Indeed it this era of consumerism and corporate control and the impending TTIP agreement between the EU and US that has central to it something called Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) which are special courts presided over by corporate lawyers, for use by corporations and are ABOVE our national sovereign and there is no right to appeal and are in secret. They will allow corporations to sue the state for non-competitive activities, such as labour laws, environmental protection, safety and will be able to force the privatisation of everything from health, education, prisons, water, forests and any other public entities. -It is to stop such monstrosities as this that we need revolutionary spirit and ideas and you can be absolutely sure that the rebel leaders of 1916 are turning in their grave that the hard won sovereignty for which they gave their lives is about to be given away in this TTIP treaty. Indeed no less than leading members of FG have actively promoted and encouraged that Ireland have these ISDS courts. This is amounts to treason.

So please show your support for the Moore Street campaign and lets start first by preserving our heritage.

*****************************************************************************...
We include an recent article by Maureen O'Suvillvan TD on the saga of Moore Street and which includes a timeline of events so far.
Src: http://maureenosullivan.ie/latest-news/minister-officia...race/
*****************************************************************************...
Minister officially refuses to give independent conservation experts access to inspect Moore St. terrace

Since 2009, when it was first acknowledged that this historically significant area could in fact be destroyed and built over as Wood Quay was and Kilmainham Gaol very nearly had been in the 1950s, we have fought to make sure we don?t lose Moore St but for a fitting historical quarter to be put in it?s place preserving the buildings and the street. Eventually the struggle resulted in the Government purchasing 14-17 Moore Street as a National Monument which is a tiny portion of the full historic terrace. In recent weeks this issue escalated when word was received that buildings either side of the 1916 Monument were being demolished.

For those who haven?t been following the saga we have created a Moore St. timeline:

Dec 16th 2015: Government coalition vote against saving Moore St from total demolition by outnumbering opposition TD?s in the 1916 Quarter Development Bill 2015.

Jan 5th 2016: Construction workers recommenced work, erecting scaffolding and hoarding. A commencement notice had been granted for surveying building features in the National Monument but the works seem to be far more extensive.

Jan 7th 2016: Moore St. Dáil Group raise the issue in the Dáil with the Minister once again; Minister doesn?t back down.

That evening I get word that building fronts are being removed and the interiors are being left open to elements. Seemingly a plan to demolish buildings either side of the National Monument is being put into action.

Jan 8th 2016: A protest takes place on Moore St and the groups in support of Save Moore Street occupied the buildings to prevent demolition of a number of buildings as there was no other choice.

Jan 11th 2016: The High Court puts a temporary stop to demolition on Moore St until a full hearing of the case taken by the 1916 relatives on the 2nd of Feb.

Jan 12th 2016: The groups overwhelmingly agreed by a show of hands to vacate the site after a meeting of the groups in the Moore Street Terrace, as the immediate threat of demolition was averted.

Jan 15th 2016: After a number of protesters who occupied the buildings raised the damage they had witnessed inside the buildings a group of TD?s and the Lord Mayor sought access to the site with independent conservation experts to inspect the work that was carried out and to see if any structural damage had taken place along the terrace.

After initially being told we would be allowed access, every 5 minutes we were told it would be another 5 minutes. Eventually the two conservation experts were refused entry by the foreman and no reason was given.

Jan 20th 2016: After sending a formal request to the Minister for access and following up with calls on Monday and Tuesday I eventually received a response from the Minister with no indication that a visit would be granted, instead she says she has arranged for an inspection by ?a senior official of the City Council?s Planning Department, accompanied by the City Archaelogist, who can afterwards provide you directly with the information you have sought about the current status of the works.? We?ll see what becomes of that review; City officials are to report on work to the National Monument at a Lord Mayor Forum at 2pm tomorrow (26th January) at City Hall.

I will be making an application through the Chief State Solicitor?s Office for access and on February 2nd we will find out the High Courts? decision whether the works on the buildings are allowed to continue or not. We sincerely hope that the High Court decision will reflect the huge outcry of support the campaign has received and that a new vision for the entire area will be realised. The irony of what the men and women in 1916 fought for and what is going on now, these men and women fought not only for Irish independence but for an Ireland of Equals and they would be dismayed that the ordinary people have to campaign and fight against a Government and council that puts corporate interests ahead of the will of the people. We live in hope that the decision will go our way but if it doesn?t the fight will continue as this is too important to let go. We will not let 1916 Dublin be built over in the same way Viking Dublin was with the Civic Offices in Wood Quay.

Great photo included of Moore St in 1974 long before is was allowed fall into it?s current state.

T - Sun Dec 13, 2015 23:43
For the past year, there have been numerous reports that ISIS have been transporting the oil they have stolen from Iraq and Syria, to Turkey and this has been greatly facilitated by the Turkish state at the highest levels. It is widely known the oil was being sold and exported by BMZ Ltd owned by Bilal Erdogan, President Erodgan's son. It is extremely unlikely that they are doing this for nothing and tens of millions have probably been siphoned off by the Erdogan family and other key officials and the Turkish economy has no doubt benefitted from an injection of cheap stolen oil sold below world market rates. The Russian Defense Ministry on Dec 2nd revealed the vast scale of the oil smuggling operation which somehow was missed by the NATO/US in the past 2 years.
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The three routes used by ISIS to transport stolen oil to Turkey

For the past year, there have been numerous reports that ISIS have been transporting the oil they have stolen from Iraq and Syria, to Turkey and this has been greatly facilitated by the Turkish state at the highest levels. It is widely known the oil was being sold and exported by BMZ Ltd owned by Bilal Erdogan, President Erodgan's son. It is extremely unlikely that they are doing this for nothing and tens of millions have probably been siphoned off by the Erdogan family and other key officials and the Turkish economy has no doubt benefitted from an injection of cheap stolen oil sold below world market rates. The Russian Defense Ministry on Dec 2nd revealed the vast scale of the oil smuggling operation which somehow was missed by the NATO/US in the past 2 years.

Related Indymedia Links: Syrian Refugees, ISIS / Al Nursa Butchers and Their Not So Secret Backing by Western Powers | The Paris Attacks -What's Going On ? | The French Republic taken hostage
Related External Links: Where will the Ukrainian bombs explode? (Hint: In Syria and blamed on Russians) | ?The Art of War? The strategy of chaos | Why does France want to overthrow the Syrian Arab Republic ? | Why did Turkey shoot down the Russian Soukhoï 24 ? | More than 500 jihadists cared for at the Ziv Medical Centre | The method behind the madness in Syria | Turkish Special Services behind Terrorist smuggling, training: Whistleblower | Erdogan sends 'Grey Wolves' to Crimea - A History Lesson | What is the US cooking up for Turkey, Iraq, Syria, and Iran? "Divide and conquer" on a whole new level | Why?s The US Hanging Turkey Out To Dry? | The Race For Raqqa And America?s Geopolitical Revenge In ?Syraq? (I) | The Race For Raqqa And America?s Geopolitical Revenge In ?Syraq? (II) | ?US seek to control the EU elites via refugee crisis? | Turkey Made Plans to Shoot Down Russian Su-24 a Month in Advance - Assange | Erdogan Blackmails NATO Allies | Massacre Proves Turk, Washington Complicity in Syria Terror By Finian Cunningham | Oil Smuggling and Syria: Is NATO No Better Than Turkey? | dA321 Crash: The Qatari Trace | ISIS-Linked Autocrats to Host British Navy | What Stinks in Saudi Ain?t the Camel Dung | You Cannot Fight Terrorism While You Are Supporting The Terrorists - Full Interview with President Bashar al-Assad by Czech TV - 1/12/15 | The Radar Recordings of the Turkish Attack on the Russian Su-24 | The Shaping of American Character | How the US Helped ISIS | In Plain Sight: Coalition Forces Routinely Air-Drop Military Supplies to ISIS Fighters In Syria | 10th Dec - 100,000 foreign troops incl. Americans to be deployed in Iraq, MP claims | EXCLUSIVE: Israeli Colonel Leading ISIL Terrorists Captured in Iraq | Syria's Assad blames France as Arab world condemns Paris attacks


Less well known is that Erdogan's daughter Sümeyye supervises a secret hospital setup by Erdogan in Sanliurfa to look after Daesh jihadists.

For the past year the US has banged on about it fighting ISIS / Daesh and at the same time the mainstream media has made it known that ISIS was being financed by stolen oil to the tune of hundreds of millions, possibly a billion per year. Yet somehow the entire US intelligence state with it's satellites, global intercept capabilities, advanced surveillance technologies of the US air force with it's fleet of drones, AWACs and other planes, never seemed to find any of the oil tanker trucks shipping this oil nor has a single one up to very recently been attached.

However over the past two months with the start of the Russia air campaign attacking targets things have changed. The regime plans of Turkey, UK, France and USA for Syria have been upset temporarily and their blatant support for ISIS exposed and completely embarrased and made obvious to the public how ineffective the US & co campaing was in light of the huge success of Russia in the space of a few weeks doing inflicting a lot of damage on ISIS.

After the Paris attacks, the US had to do something and finally attacked over 100 ISIS oil tankers. There are reports that a leaflet drop was done 45 mins in advance to advise everyone to run away as an attack was immiment. It's a pity the 2,000+ civilians (and these are US military figures) killed by drone strikes over the last few years never got the same warning.

In the same week though Russia upped it's air campaign and destroyed over 500 ISIS oil tankers and have since gone on to destroy many more including oil storage tanks so as to disable the infrastructure to enable the large scale looting of the oil. While the US attack was a token gesture to keep up appearences, the Russian attack hurt the Erdogan's badly and he was mad that the Russians would dare disrupt his criminal entreprise.

It was widely speculated by many commentators that the shooting down of a Russia SU-24 aircraft in Syria by a Turkish F16 fighter was in retaliation for the attack on the oil tankers and attempt to warn Russia, although it had the opposite effect because they intensified their air campaign against the ISIS monsters. It should be pointed out that on a surface level this may have been how it played out, but taking in the larger geopolitical context, driving a wedge between Russia and Turkey plays to the advantage of the US, because it means the loss of trade with Russia while hurting Turkey, hurts Russia too. Also the Turkish Stream gas pipeline from Russia to Turkey and onwards to the Balkans is at best now on hold or possibly cancelled. The Balkans are traditional allies of Russia and undoubtly one of the objectives of Turkish Stream was to help strength those again. While the US has in public supported Turkey in the whole affair they still let it be known through a leak reported to Reuters news agency by an anonymous American military official that the Russian plane was downed while over Syrian airspace which is another way of the US saying to Russia we know. This suggests something deeper to that particular event and may relate to the speculation of a coming civil war in Turkey where so far Erdogna has been the fall guy and the planned end result is the setup of a Kurdish state -aka Kurdistan. This has been the goal of the neo-cons from the early 2000s. The general idea was to smash up all the larger states and fracture them into smaller ones, each then more easily controllable. Iraq is defact more or less on the way to being divided into three states. Libya is a failed state. Syria is the present target and Iran is the main target, at least in that part of the world.

But for the moment, the focus of this article is on the presentation made on Weds 2nd Dec 2015, the Russian military presented comprehensive and devasting evidence (for the Turks at least) of the large scale of the ISIS oil smuggling through Turkey and the complicity of the Turkish state in this massive criminal entreprise and for their support of these butchers who have ruthlessly murdered tens of thousands, beheaded people and destroyed some of the greatest archaeological that were treasures of all humankind.

In the presentation they illustrated the scale of the operation and how the oil is transported to Turkey. It goes via three routes (see map), the Western, Northern and Eastern route. There are thousands of oil tanker trucks (8,500 per day) used which are driven at night over the Syrian-Turkish border where they let through without any hinderance. It is reckoned they were making approximately 3 million dollars per day which works out at around 3x365 = 1 billion+ dollars per year. Some of the oil is exported through the ports of Dörtyol and Iskenderun on the South coast of Turkey and the rest sold within Turkey with the Turks taking their cut for services rendered.


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Russian military reveals details of ISIS-Turkey oil smuggling

In the presentation a series of aerial and satellite photographs illustrated each point. On the Eastern route, one satellite image, dated the 14th November 2015, shows the presence of 3,220 tanker trucks crossing the border into Turkey via the crossing point at Zakho.

So far Russia has carried out air-strikes on 32 petrol complexes, 11 refineries, 23 pumping stations and 1,080 tanker trucks transporting petroleum products. The result for the IE is a loss of 1.5 million dollars per day yet ISIS are still receiving money, arms and munitions from their sponsors abroad.

Meanwhile ....'Great partners': Pentagon rejects Russian evidence of Turkey aiding ISIS
Src: https://www.rt.com/usa/324377-usa-russia-turkey-isis/

A Pentagon spokesman rejected Russia?s evidence of Turkey?s involvement in oil deals with Islamic State militants, calling Turkey a ?great partner? just a day after his boss complained to Congress that Ankara was not fighting ISIS enough.

?Let me be very clear that we flatly reject any notion that the Turks are somehow working with ISIL,? said Colonel Steve Warren, spokesman for the US-led coalition fighting against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL). ?That is preposterous and kind of ridiculous. We absolutely, flatly reject that notion.?... ...


Isn't that incredible after all the coverage in the Western press about ISIS?? Does that not wake up some people from the incessant propaganda covering up their role in the creation of ISIS?

And on Nov 24 head of Turkey's Intelligence says we must stop Putin from crushing the Islamic revolution
src: http://fortruss.blogspot.com.au/2015/11/turkish-intelligence-chief-isis-is.html

Hakan Fidan, the head of Turkey's National Intelligence Organization, known by the MIT acronym, has drawn a lot of attention and criticism for his controversial comments about ISIS.

Mr. Hakan Fidan, Turkish President's staunchest ally, condemned Russian military intervention in Syria, accusing Moscow of trying to 'smother' Syria's Islamist revolution and serious breach of United Nations law.

?ISIS is a reality and we have to accept that we cannot eradicate a well-organized and popular establishment such as the Islamic State; therefore I urge my western colleagues to revise their mindset about Islamic political currents, put aside their cynical mentalité and thwart Vladimir Putin's plans to crush Syrian Islamist revolutionaries,? - Anadolu News Agency quoted Mr. Fidan as saying on Sunday.

Fidan further added that in order to deal with the vast number of foreign Jihadists craving to travel to Syria, it is imperative that ISIS must set up a consulate or at least a political office in Istanbul. He underlined that it is Turkey?s firm belief to provide medical care for all injured people fleeing Russian ruthless airstrikes regardless of their political or religious affiliation.

T - Sun Nov 01, 2015 01:27
In the last two months, the dramatic and sad photographs of 3 year old Aylan Kurdi, and his brother lying dead on the shores on a beach in Turkey have finally opened the curtain very slightly on the horrors and terror of war in Syria. It is hard to conceive the trauma of this family first seeing one of their other brothers beheaded by ISIS jihadists, then to flee and then for this man's wife and two remaining young children to drown in the sea whilst attempting to escape. If you were to listen to politicans from the UK all the way up to the present prime minister, you would think they were doing this so they could scab off the social welfare but as anyone knows, this was the act of a family desperate to flee the terror in their home country and get to safety at all costs. However Aylan Kurdi and his brother and mother aren't the only ones to drown or being killed in war, there are tens of thousands dead.
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In the last two months, the dramatic and sad photographs of 3 year old Aylan Kurdi, and his brother lying dead on the shores on a beach in Turkey have finally opened the curtain very slightly on the horrors and terror of war in Syria. It is hard to conceive the trauma of this family first seeing one of their other brothers beheaded by ISIS jihadists, then to flee and then for this man's wife and two remaining young children to drown in the sea whilst attempting to escape. If you were to listen to politicans from the UK all the way up to the present prime minister, you would think they were doing this so they could scab off the social welfare but as anyone knows, this was the act of a family desperate to flee the terror in their home country and get to safety at all costs. However Aylan Kurdi and his brother and mother aren't the only ones to drown or being killed in war, there are tens of thousands dead.


Up to now the corporate media has kept us distracted with titlation, celebrity and other inane stories; for it was social media that led to these pictures going viral and the media then just had to pick up the story. Previous to that, thousands have already drowned this year alone in the Mediterranean Sea fleeing from Libya -bombed out by NATO, and other war torn countries like Iraq and Afghanistan where Western powers dropped their democracy inducing bombs, invaded and occupied for over a decade, tortured people (Abu Ghraib anyone?), ran night raids terrorizing and murdering thousands, formented civil war, armed warlords and so forth. It is funny how we hear about all these conflicts and consider them remote and happening to others while the life of middle class consumerism continues but in fact we are vaguely aware of it in our sub-conscious and it disturbs us greatly when we are forced to focus on it to actually pay attention to reality. We know that we should be doing something but content ourselves with the fact that our lives are just too busy to allow us to do anything about it.

Neverthless at the height of this crisis before the Russians stepped in, it was the ISIS jihadists who were firmly center stage in the news and were the target witha rising chorus, to send a force to Syria to remove them, but this is simply another justification for war and hides the fact that previous attempts over the last 3+ years by the Gulf States primarly Saudi Arabia and Qatar and by the US, UK, France and Turkey, have failed at regime change despite the fact that they are 100% responsible for formenting the war and financing, training, arming and sending in thousands of mercenaries and jihadists extremists. And this means they are responsible for the wave of refugees and deaths such as Aylan Kurdi. So the narrative was that ISIS are so bad and out of control which is true, that they need to send in the troops. In other words they have previously failed to swing public opinion to commit a full scale assault and hopefully this can do it. This is what all the beheadings were about in the last year and destruction of some of humanity's greatest archaeological treasures was for and firmly aimed at the Western middle classes. Again though this has changed since the Russians started bombing ISIS and caught the Western powers by surprise and ruined their narrative at least to those paying attention.

So Who backs ISIS?

When one looks there is quite a lot of evidence for who backs ISIS. First off, lets start with a Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) Aug 2012 report recently declassifed that Judical Watch managed to obtain through a FOIA request. The report was widely circulated through the US government. The report points out that the key event in the rise of ISIS was the corresponding rise of the insurgency in Syria which the USA with its allies fully supported. It confirms that reactionaries dominated the opposition from early on.

"The Salafist, The Muslim Brotherhood, and al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria" and in the next sentence says:

The West, Gulf Countries and Turkey support the opposition; while Russia, China and Iran support the regime. -so there you have it -the West & Co. support the terrorists. Later in the report it states:

If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in Eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor) and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).

The deterioration of the situation has dire consequences on the Iraqi situation and are as follows:

1. The creates the ideal atmosphere for AQI to return to return to its old pockets in Mosul and Ramadi, and will provide a renewed momentum under the presumption of unifying the Jihad among Sunni Iraq and Syria, and the rest of the Sunnis in the Arab workd against what it considers one enemy, the dissenters. [Islamic State in Iraq] ISI could also declare an Islamic State through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria, which will create grave danger in regards to unifying Iraq and the protection of its terrority.

And this is what more or less happened. In June 2014 a few thousand ISIS fighters took over the northern Iraq city of Mosul with a population of 2.5 million and gained access to the oil revenues and at the same time looted a few hundred million dollars from the bank and picked up a vast amount of weaponry provided by the US to the Iraqi army. Around this time there was lots of media coverage showing ISIS in fleets of Toyota trucks advancing on different areas. Yet how come the US didn't attack them? The US had their famous 'turkey' shoot after the first Gulf War on the road from Kuwait to Iraq where they massacred the retreating Iraqi army. So why didn't they attack these very visible convoys? They rendition people from all over the planet to Guantanamo and other secret detention sites, and launch drone attacks in other countries like Afghanistan and Pakistan which even the US admits has killed over 2,000 civilans so far in the form of colateral damage -all to kill a few Al Qaeda leader -assuming they really did. Their radar and signals intercept satellites can pick up all movements and radio signals in vast areas and would be particularly focused on the entire Middle East -yet they were claim they were surprised. The whole episode looks more like tacit support by virtue of not intervening.

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The US for the past year as part of it's cover story has been claiming it has been bombing ISIS but it has carried out very few sorties and in fact the Russians did more damage to ISIS in the first 3 weeks of their recent campaign than the US has in the last year. The US is likely dropping their bombs in the sand and have used it as a way to bomb infrastructure in Syria which harms Assad and the people rather than ISIS. Just recently they bombed the main power plant in Aleppo and cut power to 2.5 million people, yet when ISIS held parts of Aleppo there was a tacit agreement that neither side would damage the plant since both sides needed it. See Putin Cites US Bombing Attack on Aleppo Power Station as ?Strange?

And just recently 50 intelligence analysts working in US Central command (CENTCOM) have said ISIS intelligence was cooked by senior officials in order to make it appear ISIS was weaker than they actually were. Src: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/09/09/exclusive-50-spies-say-isis-...

Additionally there were several cases of weapons drops that were supposed to be for other fighters such as the Kurds fighting ISIS in the town of Kobane which were dropped 'accidently' into the hands of ISIS. Once is a mistake, but this has happened several times and even got reported in the mainstream news. There are other reports such as these which say the US has been dropping weapons to ISIS on a regular basis. See for example: In Plain Sight: Coalition Forces Routinely Air-Drop Military Supplies to ISIS Fighters In Syria and in March 2015 Terrorists Supported by America: U.S. Helicopter Delivering Weapons to the Islamic State (ISIS), Shot Down by Iraqi ?Popular Forces?

Last week, Head of the Iraqi Parliament?s National Security and Defense Committee Hakem al-Zameli announced that the helicopters of the US-led anti-ISIL coalition were dropping weapons and foodstuff for the ISIL terrorists in the Southern parts of Tikrit.

He underscored that he had documents and photos showing that the US Apache helicopters airdropped foodstuff and weapons for the ISIL ....

Last Monday, a senior lawmaker disclosed that Iraq?s army had shot down two British planes as they were carrying weapons for the ISIL terrorists in Al-Anbar province.

?The Iraqi Parliament?s National Security and Defense Committee has access to the photos of both planes that are British and have crashed while they were carrying weapons for the ISIL,? al-Zameli said, according to a Monday report of the Arabic-language information center of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq.

He said the Iraqi parliament has asked London for explanations in this regard.

The senior Iraqi legislator further unveiled that the government in Baghdad is receiving daily reports from people and security forces in al-Anbar province on numerous flights by the US-led coalition planes that airdrop weapons and supplies for ISIL in terrorist-held areas.

The Iraqi lawmaker further noted the cause of such western aids to the terrorist group, and explained that the US prefers a chaotic situation in Anbar Province which is near the cities of Karbala and Baghdad as it does not want the ISIL crisis to come to an end.

When we consider other aspects of ISIS like the fact that they are said to be excellent at social media and regularly use Facebook and Twitter to get their messages out, we have to wonder how the powerful NSA and cyber army of the US seems unable to close down their websites. They do it very quickly and easily when people are breaking copyright, or downloading free music. Likewise we are told ISIS are well financed and rich. So how come their banks accounts and assets aren't frozen? They managed to do this quite easily against Gadaffi at the time and recently against a range of Russia oligarchs with regard to the sanctions there.

Moving onto the arming of the "resistance" in Syria the evidence is much more in the open about the Gulf states' and Western backing of those fighting Assad and when it became increasingly clear the only 'Syrian resistance' was ISIS, the US media then pushed the line that it was US allies (-i.e. not the USA itself) supporting them. In Sep 2014 General Dempsey told the Senate Armed Services committee that their "Arab allies" were funding ISIS. Later in Oct 2014 Vice President Joe Biden publicly criticized US allies again for backing ISIS. Biden even apologized to Turkey and the United Arab Emirates for saying Middle Eastern allies are partly to blame for the strengthening of ISIS. At an appearance (Oct 2014) at Harvard University, he said the militant Islamist group had been inadvertently strengthened by actions allies took to help opposition groups fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

"They poured hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad. Except that the people who were being supplied were al-Nusra and al Qaeda and the extremist elements of Jihadis coming from other parts of the world," Biden said.

You don't just hand over millions of dollars and tonnes of weapons to anybody. If you try and claim on the social welfare for alot less you are checked and cross checked and have to make multiple verifications as to who you actually are. You also have to wonder why Biden came out in public and said this. It suggests that different factions of the elite in the US empire are at odds at how things should be happening. And yet the narrative they tried to push that their allies do thing outside of their control is not right either. It is said that Saudi regime can't take a pee without the US say so as they are joined at the hip. Without the US protection and security, the royals in Saudi would be overthrown in weeks if not days.

To help those still in doubt, an ISIS leader, Abu Atheer in 2013 stated: "We have good relations with our brothers in the FSA," and said ISIS bought anti-aircraft missiles and anti-tank weapons from the FSA.

Then we have the killing of US ambassador Stevens in Benghazi, Libya in Sept 2012. Stevens was killed by some faction of Al Qaeda and was funneling weapons seized from Gadaffi Libyan army stockpiles after his downfall and were shipped to the terrorists in Syria. Officially Stevens was killed by a faction of Al Qaeda but it is not actually clear who did it. The Steven's killing itself is interesting as once again it seems to shine a light on divisions in the US elite. There is also speculation that elements of lower ranks of special forces and Navy are so appalled at the actions of the CIA & politicos that despite having a unit nearby, none was sent to rescue Stevens. Regardless anyhow, according to documents obtained by Judical Watch:

Weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the Port of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The weapons shipped during late-August 2012 were Sniper rifles, RPG?s, and 125 mm and 155mm howitzers missiles.

During the immediate aftermath of, and following the uncertainty caused by, the downfall of the ((Qaddafi)) regime in October 2011 and up until early September of 2012, weapons from the former Libya military stockpiles located in Benghazi, Libya were shipped from the port of Benghazi, Libya to the ports of Banias and the Port of Borj Islam, Syria. The Syrian ports were chosen due to the small amount of cargo traffic transiting these two ports. The ships used to transport the weapons were medium-sized and able to hold 10 or less shipping containers of cargo....

...The numbers for each weapon were estimated to be: 500 Sniper rifles, 100 RPG launchers with 300 total rounds, and approximately 400 howitzers missiles [200 ea - 125mm and 200ea - 155 mm.]

Reports say that Britain's MI6 cooperated with the CIA on this weapons rat-line to Syria.

And just recently a trial in the UK of a Swedish man accused of terrorism in Syria, collapsed after according to this report:

The prosecution abandoned the case, apparently to avoid embarrassing the intelligence services. The defence argued that going ahead with the trial would have been an "affront to justice" when there was plenty of evidence the British state was itself providing "extensive support" to the armed Syrian opposition. That didn?t only include the "non-lethal assistance" boasted of by the government (including body armour and military vehicles), but training, logistical support and the secret supply of "arms on a massive scale" See Guardian June 2015 Now the truth emerges: how the US fuelled the rise of Isis in Syria and Iraq

Indeed it has been suggested that all the Jihadists going to Syria over the last year or two from Britain were helped in their efforts by the MI6 despite the media scare stories horrified that this was happening and clamouring for more police and surveillance powers. To spell it out, the British state uses the angry young Muslem men in Britain to put in the meat grinder to promote extremism and carry out terrorism abroad and at the very same time to scare the home population into accepting more draconian powers and ratcheting up of the police state. This is all about controlling the folks at home. You need to be made scared and confused all the time. What's even better for the neo-liberal capitalist system is that the waves of refugees and immigrants are the perfect tool for driving down labour costs and undermining working conditions and rights. It's a win-win.

This article from Voltaire network http://www.voltairenet.org/article188650.html

For months it was in the news that 400 Britons had joined the jihadis in Syria. Foreign Secretary William Hague himself said so. However, the number of these British jihadis is much larger and it has been revealed that some of them were trained to be Sunni jihadists by a jihad-seeking Saudi mullah in a British mosque under the watchful eyes of the MI6.

The Independent in June 2014 reported Birmingham MP Khalid Mahmood saying at least 1,500 Britons, if not more, have joined the terrorist-led jihad in Syria and Iraq [6], rejecting the 400 figure handed out by Hague, and 500 such jihadis referred to by U.K.?s anti-terror chief Sir Peter Fahy [7]. ?I imagine 1,500 certainly would be the lower end. If you look across the whole of the country, there?s been a number of people going across,? Mahmood said.

Does anyone think there is no mosque in Britain that is not under surveillance?

For yet more coverage of how Western powers are backing the ISIS terrorists in Syria see this report from the Guardian in 2013. Notice how it is always couched in terms of helping moderates even though it should be absolutely clear there aren't any and the various governments and intelligence agencies know that too.

From West training Syrian rebels in Jordan Exclusive: UK and French instructors involved in US-led effort to strengthen secular elements in Syria's opposition, say sources

Western training of Syrian rebels is under way in Jordan in an effort to strengthen secular elements in the opposition as a bulwark against Islamic extremism, and to begin building security forces to maintain order in the event of Bashar al-Assad's fall.

Jordanian security sources say the training effort is led by the US, but involves British and French instructors.

The UK Ministry of Defence denied any British soldiers were providing direct military training to the rebels, though a small number of personnel, including special forces teams, have been in the country training the Jordanian military.

But the Guardian has been told that UK intelligence teams are giving the rebels logistical and other advice in some form.

British officials have made it clear that they believe new EU rules have now given the UK the green light to start providing military training for rebel fighters with the aim of containing the spread of chaos and extremism in areas outside the Syrian regime's control.

According to European and Jordanian sources the western training in Jordan has been going on since last year and is focused on senior Syrian army officers who defected.

"As is normal, before any major decision is taken on this issue, the preparations are made so that when that decision is taken, everything is in place for it to go smoothly. That is what these groups [special forces] do. They go in in advance," a European diplomat said.

Reading between the lines, it is clear they have been blatantly training, arming and providing intelligence to the terrorists, which would include locations and movements of Assad's Syrian army. The sentence about maintain order in the event of Bashar al-Assad's fall is a laugh because if we check with what happened in Libya, it has gone from the African country with the highest standard of living and tolerance to a completely failed state, with infrastructure built over decades destroyed, and over-run with marauding gangs of Jihadists and criminals who have murdered literally tens of thousands since Gadaffi's fall.

For another angle on this, the former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki warned that the war in Syria could engulf Iraq, yet the United States and its allies kept supporting the insurgency. The American bombing of ISIS, relatively light and sporadic, has only intensified the belief of many Iraqis that the United States doesn?t want to defeat the group. Maliki has been publicly accusing Saudi Arabia and Qatar of funding ISIS for months. He also blamed both countries for launching Syria's three-year civil war through al Qaeda-linked groups that now operate on both sides of the Iraqi-Syrian border, next to Anbar province.

"They are attacking Iraq through Syria indirectly. They absolutely started the war in Iraq, they started the war in Syria," Maliki said. ISIL has been one of the biggest fighting forces in Syria's civil war. Regarding Saudi Arabia: "Saudi Arabia supports terrorism against the world, Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Libya. See March 2014 Iraqi PM Maliki says Saudi, Qatar openly funding violence in Anbar province

Finally not forgetting the role of Turkey which is actually huge because without them it would have been much harder to supply, train and generally prop up ISIS and it affiliates. In this article Links between Turkey and ISIS are now ?undeniable? some of the details are exposed although many more can be found quite easily elsewhere. For example:

..Documents and flash drives seized during the Sayyaf raid reportedly revealed links ?so clear? and ?undeniable? between Turkey and ISIS ?that they could end up having profound policy implications for the relationship between us and Ankara,? a senior western official familiar with the captured intelligence told the Guardian.

NATO member Turkey has long been accused by experts, Kurds, and even Joe Biden of enabling ISIS by turning a blind eye to the vast smuggling networks of weapons and fighters during the ongoing Syrian war....
...In November, a former ISIS member told Newsweek that the group was essentially given free reign by Turkey?s army.

?ISIS commanders told us to fear nothing at all because there was full cooperation with the Turks,? the fighter said. ?ISIS saw the Turkish army as its ally especially when it came to attacking the Kurds in Syria....

?You have a lot of people now that are invested in the business of extremism in Turkey,? Schanzer added. ?If you start to challenge that, it raises significant questions of whether? the militants, their benefactors, and other war profiteers would tolerate the crackdown.

...A Western diplomat, speaking to the Wall Street Journal in February, expressed a similar sentiment: ?Turkey is trapped now ? it created a monster and doesn?t know how to deal with it.?

Ankara had begun to address the problem in earnest ? ..when an ISIS-affiliated suicide bomber killed 32 activists in Turkey?s southeast on July 20.

A bit more about the not so moderate Free Syrian Army openly supported by US, UK, France, Turkey, Saudi & Qatar

The Free Syrian Army (FSA) is a terrorist organization responsible for indiscriminate killings, imposition of sharia law, murders, rapes, cannibalism and more. Even one of the FSA commanders, Bassel Idriss, recently admitted to openly collaborating with ISIS and al-Nusra, revealing yet another example of the fact that the ?moderate rebels? are not moderate at all.

In an interview with the Daily Star of Lebanon, Idriss stated ?We are collaborating with the Islamic State and the Nusra Front by attacking the Syrian Army?s gatherings in . . . Qalamoun . . . . Let?s face it: The Nusra Front is the biggest power present right now in Qalamoun and we as FSA would collaborate on any mission they launch as long as it coincides with our values.?

Idriss also admitted that many FSA fighters had pledged allegiance to ISIS. He said, ?[ISIS] wanted to enhance its presence in the Western Qalamoun area. After the fall of Yabroud and the FSA?s retreat into the hills [around Arsal], many units pledged allegiance [to ISIS]?.

Abu Fidaa, a retired Syrian Army Colonel who is now a part of the Revolutionary Council in the Qalamoun, corroborated Idrisss? statements by saying that ?A very large number of FSA members [in Arsal] have joined ISIS and Nusra. In the end, people want to eat, they want to live, and the Islamic State has everything.?

Not only the FSA, but also the Syrian Revolutionary Front has also openly admitted to working with Nusra and al-Qaeda. The leader of the SRF, Jamaal Maarouf admitted that his brigades coordinate with Nusra and al-Qaeda regularly.

Salem Idriss, one of the men seen in the photograph with John McCain, is the commander of the FSA, the ?opposition group? touted as a ?moderate rebels.? In reality, of course, the FSA is nothing of the sort.

Former US Ambassador Robert Ford has admitted as much, saying that "for a long time, we have looked the other way" as US-backed groups worked with al-Qaeda?s affiliate, the Islamic State of Iraq spinoff al-Nusra Front. Many "moderate" rebels - "entire CIA-backed rebel units" - have joined al-Nusra Front and ISIS. Earlier this year, the main US-backed group, Harakat al-Hazm, couldn?t beat al-Nusra Front -- so it joined them

However as the rebels gained strength, the reports of war crimes and atrocities that they were committing began to create a bit of a public relations problem for Washington. It then became standard policy to insist that U.S. support was only being given to what they referred to as "moderate" rebel forces. This distinction, however, had no basis in reality.

Reuters had reported in 2012 that the FSA's command was dominated by Islamic extremists, and the New York Times had reported that same year that the majority of the weapons that Washington were sending into Syria was ending up in the hands Jihadists.

And the FSA's ties to Al-Nusra are just the beginning. In June of 2014 Al-Nusra merged with ISIS at the border between Iraq and Syria.

So to review, the FSA is working with Al-Nusra, Al-Nusra is working with ISIS, and the U.S. has been sending money and weapons to the FSA even though they've known since 2012 that most of these weapons were ending up in the hands of extremists but even that is too gentle a conclusion because as we know and cited above, they have been doing weapons and food drops directly to ISIS.

Former presidential candidate John McCain's meeting with ISIS leader

In April 2013 former presidential candidate John McCain made an illegal visit to Syria and had a meeting in a rebel safe house with the heads of the "Free Syrian Army" in Idlib, Syria. Present was the top Al Qaeda terrorist leader Ibrahim al-Badri (aka Al-Baghdadi of ISIS, aka Caliph Ibrahim of the recently founded Islamic Empire) demonstrating the farce that is the so called War on Terror. We have to let the magnitude and significance of this sink in. This is the same group the American army were 'hunting' down in Iraq, the key brand name in the 14 year War on Terror but really War of Terror by the US and it's allies on Arab and Middle East states.
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(Courtesy VoltaireNet.org)
n the left foreground, top al Qaeda terrorist leader Ibrahim al-Badri (aka Al-Baghdadi of ISIS, aka Caliph Ibrahim of the recently founded Islamic Empire) with whom the Senator is talking. Behind Badri is visible Brigadier General Salim Idris (with glasses), the former military chief of the FSA, who has since fled to the Gulf states after the collapse of any semblance of the FSA.

The meeting and photograph also demonstrates that the FSA and ISIS are very very close and largely one and the same and underscores that supplying arms and support to the FSA is effectively supporting ISIS. Even if they were truly separate, the very fact that you are arming one faction, diverts Assads forces away from dealing with ISIS and takes the pressure off them and thereby allowing them to advance and take over territory and of course to carry out their butchery.

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U.S. Senator John McCain meeting illegally
in 2013 with chiefs of the Free Syrian Army (i.e. ISIS)
Also present in one of the pictures with John McCain is Abu Sakkar a member of the Farouq brigade. This is the famous rebel videotaped cutting the heart out of a Syrian soldier and biting into it as reported here: http://www.activistpost.com/2013/05/syrian-rebel-eats-soldiers-heart-paid.html

The New York times attempted to run a story to deny the visit and claim it was rumors, but the only other offering in the way of McCain?s defense is a statement by his own Communications Director, Brian Rogers, who claims that the man in the picture was not Baghdadi but another individual associated with the Northern Storm Brigade, ironically a terrorist organization in its own right. Northern Storm was famous for kidnapping a group of religious pilgrims crossing through Syria in September, 2012. Nevertheless, the comparisons of the photographs and the individuals in them lean toward the idea that the terrorist in the picture is Baghdadi. Regardless of who it was, the individual was a terrorist since McCain?s defense is that it was a fighter/commander with Northern Storm.

It should also be remembered that McCain traveled to Libya during the assault against Ghaddafi in order to meet with terrorists in that country and promote the barbarism which they would ultimately bring.

It should be noted that McCain is extremely close to the color revolution apparatus organization, the International Republican Institute, a wing of the National Endowment for Democracy and USAID. He is the current Chairman of the IRI.

It Was All Planned Years Ago.

There are still more sides to this story because all this mayhem was planned years ago. For those who don't know, U.S. General Wesley Clark was Supreme Allied Commander Europe of NATO from 1997 to 2000. In an interview with Amy Goodman on March 2, 2007, Clark (Ret.), explains that the Bush Administration planned (in 2001) to take out 7 countries in 5 years: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran. -See here It has all taken a little longer than expected but it is making good progress. Here is the latest update.

  • Iraq -done [2003]
  • Afghanistan -done [2001]
  • Libya -done [The fall of Gaddafi 2011.]
  • Sudan -done [Divided last year in two states after US sponsored terrorism.]
  • Somalia -done [US puppets in government.]
  • Lebanon - [In progress right now. The Syrian war has already spread across the borders.]
  • Syria - [In progress right now. US financed terrorism.]
  • Iran - The final stage. And it will be loud. .

The Wave of Refugees

So it should be quite clear that the current wave of refugees to Europe is directly as a result of the actions of the sponsors of terrorism in Syria. While the numbers are trying to enter Europe are in the hundreds of thousands, there are in fact several million in the countries directly bordering Syria. It is likely that the poorest are in places like Lebanon and Turkey while the ones reaching Europe had more money to pay the traffickers. The ideal solution is that the war would end and resources could be made available to rebuild the country and people's lives but this is not likely to pan out.

So far the refugee crisis is causing all sorts of political problems in Europe. Germany had said it will take 850,000 and Sweden expects to accommodate around 190,000 by the end of the year. For a country like Sweden this is a huge number and even for Germany too and one can only conclude that this is going to greatly fan the flames of the far right.

The Left in general seems to take the approach that we should let everyone in and it will all be fine but it won't. Nor do the Left say an awful lot about who has caused all the butchery or make any real effort at trying to understand what is going on. The Left simply play the role assigned to them. In the Libyan war they were fooled and thereby helped with the pretext for the justification for the NATO bombing of Libya. Then again in the Syrian war, they were fooled for a while into believing the FSA were Left wing rebels and again enabled the pretend game. And now in this instance by just reacting and not analysing and controlling their own narrative, they instead allow the mainstream media to get away with the lies that the refugees are the result of Assad. They are not. They are the result of terrorism. We also have to step back and see what is the bigger picture. For instance, Ulrich Grillo, the boss of Germany?s heavy industry and obviously a capitalist not a leftist, has welcomed the refugees. Why you would wonder? -because big business has profited from the occasion to abolish the minimum wage in several German federal states and is getting a huge influx of cheap labour. This is and will cause resentment from the German population. There has been suggestions that this was planned up to a year in advance primarily with President Erdoğan of Turkey who controls the 'valve' and therefore the flow of refugees from Syria through Turkey and onwards to Europe via the Balkans. Erdoğan in the last few weeks has managed to extract a promise of several billion euros from the EU to deal with refugees on Turkish soil. In this article Who is twitter-luring refugees to Germany? the author cites a study that shows the bulk of tweets inviting refugees to Germany and welcoming came not from the Germans but an army of bots operating from UK, USA and Australia. What exactly then is going on and what is the effect on Syria? It looks like the action by Erdoğan to readily accept refugees from Syria on the one hand and allow them to pass through Turkey to Europe is essentially an exercise to drain Syria of it's people and thereby dismantle the country. As more people leave and remember it is more likely to be the young, it tends to reinforce itself and trigger more to leave. These are the very people that are needed to both defend the country and rebuild it. And this crisis comes out a time when the efforts to topple Assad have failed and they are probably running out of fighters. The logic is that they terrorists sponsors will tap into the flood of refugees to recruit, arm and send back in a new fresh wave of bodies to the war. Traditionally refugees have been widely used for this sort of thing in all conflicts.

For the European side of the equation the benefit for the USA which after all is really the boss amongst the sponsors of this awful war (i.e. Saudi, Qatar, Turkey, France, Britain) is that if they can create enough problems in Europe it bogs them down and stops any reapproachment with Russia. For the US who incidentally fund 70% of the NATO budget, the role of NATO in Europe is one of occupation and control in the military and foreign policy sphere and America only remains strong so long as others are weaker. The geography of Europe and Russia would suggest that they should form a natural alliance and strong trading relationship, but if this was to occur, then combined an independent economic region extending from Europe into Russia would be far stronger than the USA. This can never be allowed to happen and the Ukraine war is part of the poison to disallow that. But so too must the present crisis be related to it, especially when you consider the vast majority of refugees are heading to Germany.

Links / References

http://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/weekly-updates/the-truth-about-bengha... These documents also show connections between the collapse in Libya and the ISIS war ? and confirm that the U.S. knew remarkable details about the transfer of arms from Benghazi to Syrian jihadists

How Neocons Destabilized Europe

How the US Helped ISIS

The Covert Origins of ISIS?

In Plain Sight: Coalition Forces Routinely Air-Drop Military Supplies to ISIS Fighters In Syria

March 2015 Terrorists Supported by America: U.S. Helicopter Delivering Weapons to the Islamic State (ISIS), Shot Down by Iraqi ?Popular Forces?

http://tarpley.net/new-york-times-fails-to-cover-up-extensive-links-to-isis-b...

EXCLUSIVE: Israeli Colonel Leading ISIL Terrorists Captured in Iraq

Links between Turkey and ISIS are now ?undeniable?

Germany seeks to extract itself from the Syrian conflict

General Clark reveals that Daesh is an Israeli project

Why does France want to overthrow the Syrian Arab Republic ?

Middle East: The predictable defeat of France

New Western Info Fronts Against Syria: Refugees, Russia, And The Balkans

US to give arms, air support to Islamist militias in Syria - 10th Oct 2015

Paul Lynch - Fri Jul 17, 2015 00:57
Day 4 of Corrib Gas Trial, Castlebar Circuit Court 10th July 2015
The trial of two Mayo men accused of violent disorder and damaging property at the Shell Corrib gas project tunneling site in June 2013 continues in Castlebar circuit court.
On Friday four Shell security guards gave evidence to the court and were cross examined by the defence.
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The trial of two Mayo men accused of violent disorder and damaging property at the Shell Corrib gas project tunneling site in June 2013 continues in Castlebar circuit court.
On Friday four Shell security guards gave evidence to the court and were cross examined by the defence.

Related Links: ShellToSea.com | Radio reporter claims he lost his job over coverage of Corrib Gas controversy | Irish Times: Top criminologist calls for inquiry into Corrib policing | Archbishop Tutu calls for independent inquiry into policing of Corrib gas project | Court Report On ?rape-tape? Sergeant Being Awarded ?33,0000 | Business as usual for Gardaí ? trying to smear women in ?rape tape? controversy | Join the continuous protests against Shell | 22 TDs gather at gates of Dail to demand reversal of Corrib pipeline consents


"They are good people" - Shell security boss on protestors

Jim Farrell - part owner and director of the Shell contracted IRMS security firm - was first to give evidence.
He gave evidence that he was on site at the time of the alleged incident and that it was around the time of the G8 summit so decided to be there.

During interactions with protestors he said that: ?... My entire PPE with the exception of my gloves got torn from my body?.

In what appeared to be a Freudian slip he said that he contacted the Gardaí "by way of instructing them ... asking them" to attend the scene. This is notable as there have been consistent allegations of collusion between Shell security forces and the Gardaí since IRMS took over security on the Corrib gas project.

On cross examination the defence SC Dignam for Liam Heffernan asked Mr Farrell to explain the corporate structure of his security company.
Mr Farrell outlined that the company is called Business Mobile Security Services Ltd and that Senaca and IRMS are trade names.

It also emerged that the Aughoose tunnelling site had about 20 -25 cameras but footage from only 8 of these were submitted to the Gardaí.

When questioned about how many security personnel were employed on the Corrib gas project at the time he answered that there were over 200 security working on the Corrib project at the time and about 25 to 30 on during the day at the Aughoose site

There was a period during cross examination after which the defence barrister accused Mr Farrell of being deliberately evasive:

SC Dignam: ?Do you know why the protestors were protesting??
Farrell: ?If you have three people in a row, all have three different answers?.
SC Dignam: ?For example??
Farrell: "I don?t know... I don?t feel I need to speak for anyone else...It?s all hearsay...Do I have to answer that?"
(Judge nods yes)
Farrell: ?I don?t know... They are good people?
SC Dignam: "You are being deliberately evasive"
Farrell: "I?m not...To me it doesn?t matter what the reasons are...The only single reason, I think, is that they don?t want it there...I don?t get into local politics"

Mr Farrell continued to be questioned over the Shell surveillance operation around Aughoose. Mr Farrell said that there are privacy zones that blacked out homes from view programmed into the system by the camera installers.
Later during cross examination Mr Farrell said: ?I?ve been on the front line of virtually every protest since 2008.?

SC Nix continued the Cross examination of behalf of his client Gerry Bourke. He put it to Mr Farrell that before his company got involved in the Corrib project in 2008, that there was no problem with the protests.
He then probed into Mr Farrell?s military past, confirming that he had been a member of the elite Irish Army Rangers. When asked what is the difference between the Irish Army Rangers and the defence forces he outlined that they were ? More heavily armed, better trained, more mobility? and that only 2 - 5 % of applicants pass the admittance test.

SC Nix: ? It?s the Irish Equivalent of the SAS?
Farrell: ?Some people say that?
SC Nix: ?Or the Seals 6 Unit??
Farrell: ?Yes?

When questioned, Mr Farrell confirmed that there existed a sort of Olympics between special forces and that the Irish Army rangers consistently score highly, even higher than the Israeli Defence Forces. He also didn?t deny that the they learn things from each other at these competitions.

When asked if Mr Farrell had learned anything else from the IDF such as the martial art Krav Maga he replied: ?I don?t know anything about it?, but then agreed that it is a martial art invented by the Israeli Special Forces.

SC Nix then asked why IRMS re-branded to Senaca, to which he replied: ?Don?t know?
SC Nix asked if his website had offered: ?International armed and unarmed security?
Farrell: ?If it says it there that would be without my knowledge?, and that his company has never provided armed security.
SC Nix asked then if so would that advertising be misleading.
Farrell: ?It probably is?

SC Nix then put it to Mr Farrell that this advertisement was deleted after the ?Bolivian Fiasco? where former IRMS employee Michael Dywer was shot dead in Bolivia. He was accompanied there by another IRMS employee Tibor Revez.

SC Nix asked Mr Farrell what kind of background checks were performed during recruitment?
Mr Farrell: ?Up to 2009 there was no method to check other than go to previous employers?
SC Nix: ?Were you aware that Tibor Revez was a Neo-Nazi??
Farrell: ?Not to my knowledge?

SC Nix then quizzed Mr Farrell about the ?Operation Solitaire Shield? Nazi-style badges that commemorate the 2008 and 2009 IRMS operations to facilitate the offshore pipe-laying by the ?Solitaire? on the Corrib Gas Project in Mayo.
Farrell: "I had seen it only on the Shell to Sea website or Indymedia"

SC Nix asked if it was coincidental that these IRMS employees show up in Bolivia 3 months after President Morales nationalised gas that Shell have a 25% stake in, and then your website goes down to be updated.

SC Nix then asked about the background of Terry Downes, another IRMS director.
Farrell: ?Bombs and military?

SC Nix: ?Are you familiar with Shell?s operations in Nigeria??
Farrell: ?No?

Towards the end of the questioning Mr Farrell said of the Corrib project: ?Its heavily regulated, all the permits are in place I?d have no problem with it?
To which SC Nix replied: ?And the Titanic was unsinkable and the banks were regulated!?


Evidence from former Westport Garda Superintendent who signed up for Shell security


The second prosecution witness called was Patrick Doyle, an IRMS security guard.
For the prosecution he outlined events of 23rd June 2013 at Aghoos similarly to Mr Farrell.

On cross examination he was asked about his background. He said that he joined the Gardai in 1974 and served in various locations including Sligo & Blacklion on the Border with Northern Ireland.
He was asked if he had at the time access to army backup to deal with insurgents.

SC Nix asked him if he has daughters, and then asked (referring to the 2011 incident where Gardai unknowingly recorded themselves after arresting two female protestors) ?What would you think about men laughingly discussing raping your daughters??
Doyle: "I?m aware of media coverage only in relation to this incident"
SC Nix: ?You?ve never heard any of this apart from media coverage??
Doyle: ?Yes?

Mr Doyle said that he retired from the force on 15th May 2009 and joined IRMS late July 2010
When asked, he confirmed that he would have been the prosecution officer of some of the protestors on behalf of the DPP.
To which SC Nix said: ?And you brought your life experience and knowledge of protestors with you into IRMS?
Doyle: ?No I didn?t?

SC Nix asked him if he heard coverage about booze being delivered to Belmullet Garda station or the allegation that in 2006 a Garda made sexual remarks to a protestor about his wife.

SC Nix: ?Do you consider it appropriate for a member of An Garda Siochana to do this??
Doyle: ?I don?t think it?s appropriate?

SC Nix put it to Mr Doyle that the protests changed when IRMS got involved in Corrib Gas
Doyle:? I don?t agree with that?
SC Nix: ?How many arrests were made while Gilmore security were working on Corrib??
Doyle: ?I don?t know?
SC Nix: ?You don?t know because there weren?t any!?

SC Nix asked Mr Doyle if he knew that between May 2007 and Nov 2009, 111 complaints were received by the Garda Ombudsman Commission.
Mr Doyle said that he was not aware of that.

SC Nix: ?78 were deemed admissible, 7 went to the DPP and there were 0 prosecutions?
Doyle: ?I?m not aware of that?
SC Nix: ?That?s right, nobody gave a damn about them, nobody was interested in their concerns, no one was prepared to hear them.?
Mr Doyle: ?I don?t know what their concerns are... there are licences in place.?
SC Nix: ?There were licences in place for banking and regulators in place ? they haven?t worked very well!?

Mr Nix referred to earlier testimony from Mr Dickson - the onshore pipeline construction manager, who admitted that he doesn?t even have an engineering degree, and asked Mr Doyle: ?What do you think my clients concerns are??
Doyle: ?I wouldn?t have any concerns... if I wanted to buy land there I wouldn?t mind.

SC Dignam: ?He wasn?t physically aggressive, would you agree?? Shell security guard: ?Yes?

The defence called two more former IRMS security guards as prosecution witnesses whose testimony and cross examination were much shorter than that of Mr Farrell and Mr Doyle.

Paul Kileen - who was on duty for IRMS - said of the alleged incident:
?There was a lot of pushing and shoving, they were trying to gain entry and we were trying to keep them out.?
?It?s all a blur it all happened so quick?
He also said he heard someone say ?Jim get your men inside before they get hurt?

On cross examination, referring to his client, SC for Liam Heffernan asked: ?He wasn?t physically aggressive, would you agree??
Paul Kileen: ?Yes?

-----------------------

The state expects to finish with prosecution witnesses today. The defence will then call witnesses for a number of days to prove that the protest was reasonable, possibly extending into next week.

Grangegorman squat - Mon Mar 23, 2015 22:56
Scenes turn ugly later as baliffs and hired thugs attack the residents, driving a van into the crowd -see comments for updates
A massive eviction is underway in Dublin. It is at the complex of occupied houses and former factory spaces in Grangegorman. Reports indicate that at 7am in the morning a very large number of private security angle grinder their way through one of the metal gates, invaded the area en massed and are erecting barriers (pictured) inside and trying to evict the occupants.
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Baliffs, hired thugs and Garda try
to force their way in. Later they turn violent.

A massive eviction is underway in Dublin. It is at the complex of occupied houses and former factory spaces in Grangegorman. Reports indicate that at 7am in the morning a very large number of private security angle grinder their way through one of the metal gates, invaded the area en massed and are erecting barriers (pictured) inside and trying to evict the occupants.

Related Links: Squatting Eviction Underway in Grangegorman | Aljazeera: Residents resist eviction, clash with police in Dublin suburb | From May 2014: Eviction attempt defeated in Grangegorman | Squat's the Story? Political squat facing eviction in Grangegorman
See also: https://www.facebook.com/SolidarityTimes -where this story was first reported.
https://www.facebook.com/resistgg Facebook Page - Resist Grangegorman's Eviction


At 6.30 am this morning, around 30 workers broke into a squatted complex on the lower Grangegorman Road that is home to about 30 people. (The space is home to a flourishing community with homes, community gardens and a strong cultural base; including art exhibitions, poetry nights, a circus space and a community kitchen.)

Although no court order had been issued to residents, the gardai assisting in the eviction. One of the houses in the complex has been fenced off by workers, illegally imprisioning some of the residents.

This is yet another example of how the government would prefer empty buildings to stay empty, while the number of families on the streets increases daily. So far the eviction is being resisted by the community.

Update: Grangegorman éviction resistance is still underway with more people arriving down to support all the time.

The residents have managed to get a chain on and lock this huge gat limiting the access bailiffs have to the site. However the electricity has been cut off to their houses so they are asking that people bring down hot food if they can. Raingear and warm clothes are also sought so that people can maintain the roof and gate top occupations.

All sorts of support are welcome, even simply turning up and letting the Garda and bailiffs know that their actions are being monitored.

The footage and interviews we uploaded to https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=347131162142993 will give you a good sense of what is happening. Please share that video out

Src: https://www.facebook.com/SolidarityTimes

--------

People are asked to make their way to the area, its on the street behind the Cobblestone pub at the top of the Smithfield square

anti-austerity alliance - Fri Feb 20, 2015 16:34
So how many bankers went to jail ? None! One Law for the Rich and One for the Rest of Us
The Anti-Austerity Alliance has today condemned the jailing of anti-water meter protestors at the behest of Denis O?Brien?s company GMC Sierra.

Anti-Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy said ?The jailing of these protestors and the arrests in Tallaght is an attack on the right of communities to protest against the imposition of austerity measures, in this case the water charge and meters, which are being imposed by the government despite the massive opposition to them.
featured image
When government propaganda fails,
political policing kicks in...

The Anti-Austerity Alliance has today condemned the jailing of anti-water meter protestors at the behest of Denis O?Brien?s company GMC Sierra.

Anti-Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy said ?The jailing of these protestors and the arrests in Tallaght is an attack on the right of communities to protest against the imposition of austerity measures, in this case the water charge and meters, which are being imposed by the government despite the massive opposition to them.

Related Links: Right2Water campaign shocked at jailing of water protesters| Stop poitical policing - Stop the arrests now! | Right to Plunder the Economy, Not Right to Protest | Free the Jobstown 4! - Socialist Party Press Release | Paul Murphy TD arrested on trumped up charges designed to discredit Anti-Water Charges campaign


The Anti-Austerity Alliance has today condemned the jailing of anti-water meter protestors at the behest of Denis O?Brien?s company GMC Sierra.

Anti-Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy said ?The jailing of these protestors and the arrests in Tallaght is an attack on the right of communities to protest against the imposition of austerity measures, in this case the water charge and meters, which are being imposed by the government despite the massive opposition to them.

?The court has jailed these protestors at the behest of the Denis O?Brien owned GMC Sierra so that they can continue to try to impose water meters on communities which have risen up in peaceful protest against their installation. Once again, the courts have been used to attack the right of people to engage in peaceful protest.

?The attacks from the state on the campaign against water charges needs to be met with a significant response by the campaign and communities, the protest which has been organised against political policing following the Jobstown arrests on Saturday can be a response in opposition to these attacks.?

AAA councillor Michael O?Brien is a councillor for the area and is involved in the protests said: ?This is a disgraceful attack on the right of a community to defend itself through mass peaceful protests against the imposition of austerity.

?The protests have been met with organised violence from the state through the Gardaí. The Gardaí have acted as bully boys on behalf of the government and GMC Sierra through physical attacks and harassment of those who have engaged in the protests.

?These jailings will not deter people from protesting against the installation of water meters and will be met with a firm response by the communities and the anti-water charges movement.?

missing our buses already - Fri Feb 20, 2015 16:29
Just three weeks ago the National Transport Authority (NTA) officially started the tendering for 2016 of initially 10% of Dublin Bus routes and a further 10% of all Bus Eireann routes with most of the routes in Waterford City, and a number of Dublin commuter routes are to be privatised. In the original plan a number of Cork City routes were to go but these will probably happen later. This process has been the culmination of a relentless effort by Fine Gael (FG) in the present government and their predecessors and fellow Neo-Liberal ideologists, Fianna Fáil (FF) in the last government where they have consistently pushed for the break up of both Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann so that it can be handed over to their friends in the private sector to run on a profit basis. The NTA is used as a sort of cloak of respectability to give the impression that they will actually be a regulator with teeth of which we know very few regulators have any teeth, with the banking regulator during the Celtic Tiger coming to mind, plus many other examples and the function of NTA is really for propaganda value to convince the middle class. However this whole scheme is about ideology and is NOT about competition but about privatisation.
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10% to go in 2016 and then decimation beings in earnest

Just three weeks ago the National Transport Authority (NTA) officially started the tendering for 2016 of initially 10% of Dublin Bus routes and a further 10% of all Bus Eireann routes with most of the routes in Waterford City, and a number of Dublin commuter routes are to be privatised. In the original plan a number of Cork City routes were to go but these will probably happen later. This process has been the culmination of a relentless effort by Fine Gael (FG) in the present government and their predecessors and fellow Neo-Liberal ideologists, Fianna Fáil (FF) in the last government where they have consistently pushed for the break up of both Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann so that it can be handed over to their friends in the private sector to run on a profit basis. The NTA is used as a sort of cloak of respectability to give the impression that they will actually be a regulator with teeth of which we know very few regulators have any teeth, with the banking regulator during the Celtic Tiger coming to mind, plus many other examples and the function of NTA is really for propaganda value to convince the middle class. However this whole scheme is about ideology and is NOT about competition but about privatisation.

Related Links: Prices rises are on the way for public transport users... | Joe Higgins TD seeks topical issue debate tomorrow in Dáil on Bus Eireann strike | Government to fund private bus companies! - Jobs, wages & services under threat | Rivermeade residents wage war to defend the 40B bus


The tactic of tending just 10% of the routes is to take a softly softly approach so as not to alarm the public but the intention is very clear and in the submissions made by various organisations including private bus operators, all of them urged that there be further rounds of tendering with suggestions made it should be up to 30% to 40% of routes. The reason they don't want the lot just now is because they need time to gear up for them.

In the case of the UK where bus services have been deregulation, rural fares went up 12% and usage went down 19% - 26% while in urban areas like London, fares went up 39%. Not only that the government has to subsidise a good many of the routes otherwise the private operators would not make a profit and would discontinue the routes.

In the case of Newcastle where the council tried to get back the bus service the private operators refused point blank to do any such deal and threatened to stop the entire service. Additionally the UK Competition Authority found evidence of cartels as just 5 companies carried 70% of the passengers, yet they found head to head competition to be uncommon which is a clear indication the routes were sown up or 'owned'.

In the case of Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann, the removal of 10% of routes will further cut into their revenue putting further downward pressure on wages and increasing fares. This will discourage public use more and bring greater threat of disruption due to legitimate industrial action. It will also mean their bus fleets will shrink further and as more routes are taken off them, revenue will drop and yet more shrinkage of the fleet. Meanwhile the private operators will be building their own fleets and will quickly have a larger fleet than either Dublin Bus or Bus Eireann. Once this happens they will be in the same position as what the private operators did in Newcastle and will be able to dictate terms and threaten any efforts to take back this vital service into public ownership. At the same time they will be extorting the subsidy out of the government and you can be sure of two things. It will be a lot more than what is now paid to Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann and we won't be allowed find out because we will be told it is subject to commercial confidentiality.

For the workers who at least in the state companies have some sort of secure employment, decent working conditions, a union, and entitlement to a pension, none of this will apply to the new workers of the private operators who are likely at best to be poorly trained if at all, paid minimum wage, have no pension entitlements and have insecure employment, likely no union protection and very likely disruptive shift practices imposed by management.

Selection of the Routes
It is not exactly clear what the criteria was for the selection of the routes put out to tender but depending on what the routes are, there are two different scenarios to consider. First though it is worth considering the case of running a bus service whether in a country or nationwide and the first point to make is that you cannot provide a bus service and run it profitably. It is impossible and nobody anywhere in the world has done it. In the case of Europe, Ireland in fact gives the lowest subsidy for their public bus service which goes some way explaining why the service could be better. Incidentally we glad gave tens of billions building motorways which in effect is a subsidy to private motoring and the infrastructure of oil, motoring, road construction and car insurance. We should also stress again that in the UK where the service is privatised, it needs a subsidy to keep it running and in percentage terms that is higher than in Ireland. Part of the reason for why running a bus service cannot be run solely for private will be due to the nature of passenger volumes and distributions and this will be reflected in the routes. In the diagram above, a hypothetical bus service has a number of routes and it can be seen that only some of the routes will be profitable and these will be the busiest and high volume routes. Then there is another bunch of routes which generate a fair amount of revenue but just don't turn a profit. Lastly there will be always a set of routes which are never going to be profitable, because of the low volumes or maybe the large geographic area or whatever but which are still vital as part of the commitment to serving the public and connecting these people and communities. It can be clearly seen that any profit made on the lucrative routes is needed along with any subsidy to fund the running of the other routes.

Case 1 - Tendering the top 10% most lucrative routes.
Has the NTA decided to give away the top 10% of the most lucrative routes. From the point of view of the private operators this will be the ideal. From the point of view of Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann this would be a disaster to their revenues and plunge them into financial crisis very quickly. From the point of view of the government this would be too blatant and politically dangerous so for this reason we can be reasonably sure this has not happened.

Case 2 - Tendering a random selection of 10% of the routes.
This second case is where the routes are just a random and is likely to have one or two lucrative and one or two very revenue poor routes and a bunch of intermediates. The private operators would likely refuse to play ball with this and given the government wants to reward the capitalist 1% class whom they serve, then this is not likely.

Case 3 - Tendering a cluster of 10% of the routes.
Looking at the routes we can see they are grouped into clusters and in some ways this makes sense because it will always be easier to run a bunch of bus services in terms of serving bus garages and interchanging buses to routes than a dispersed operating base. In terms of serving the private sector we can be sure it will not consist of routes from the least profitable, but will contain routes from the equivalent of the orange and green categories in the diagram above.

Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann aren't likely to be happy at all with the situation since ultimately they see where all this is going to end. In this third case which the NTA/government appears to have chosen it allows for a slightly slower deterioration of the national bus companies and it will be therefore easier to handle. It also gives them more time to give negative publicity in the media to Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann as their revenues fairly quickly decline and the service quickly falls apart.

Beginning of the end for OAP Free Travel
A year or two back the Irish Independent described the free travel for OAPs as a luxury. This was the first serious slavo of the intention of the 1%ers to remove this. As some people may or may not know already some of the routes on the Aircoach no longer qualify for free travel and we can be sure that by slicing up our
bus service they will not provide it on the privatised routes or if they do, they will quitely drop it later when it will be challenged on 'competition' grounds.

Conclusion
There is likely to be an implicit deal whereby the private operators will do their best to run their routes reasonably well and take the financial hit if it doesn't work out during the period when the government puts the carve up of Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann into high gear. Then when they are effectively gone and have no effective power (e.g. due to reduced bus fleet size ), we can be sure the private operators will plead that they cannot turn a profit and need more 'help' and threaten to discontinue services which no doubt they will do in some cases.

The net effect though will be that 5 or 10 years down the line, Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann will be gone or sold off to private bus operator, fares will have increased, usage will have gone down, reliability will be down, quality of service will be down, the number of routes will be reduced and existing routes in cities will be modified to make more profit and less functional and country routes will completely drop out the smaller towns and villages leaving mostly just intercity and major towns as the main stop points. The regulator will be indirectly controlled by a consortium of private operators who will dictate terms. And lastly the taxpayer will be paying more than ever to subsidise the profits of shareholders and to sustain the bonus culture of top executives of these same companies.

We can stop this in two ways. Protest, complain, publicize against what is going on and stop any further routes being taken away and boycott if possible the routes sold off.

Attached are copies of the submissions made during the consultation process. Unfortunately this wasn't well known to be taking place at the time. They contain submissions for various interested organisations including the private bus operators, unions, politicians and a number of private individuals. They are worth browsing through.

Attached also is the Dublin Bus Award contract. A map of the routes to be given away is on page 114 while the Bus Eireann maps are on pages 135 - 136 of the Bus Eireann contract.

Dublin Bus to be Privatised
Orbital Routes
17 Rialto - Blackrock
17a Blanchardstown Centre - Kilbarrack
18 Palmerstown (Old Lucan Rd.) - Sandymount
75 The Square Tallaght - Dun Laoghaire
76 Chapelizod - Tallaght (The Square)
76a Blanchardstown Centre - Tallaght
102 Sutton Station - Dublin Airport
104 Clontarf Rd (Conquer Hill) - Santry (Shanard Road)

Local Routes
33a Dublin Airport - Skerries
33b Swords - Portrane
45a Dún Laoghaire (DART Station) - Ballywaltrim
59 Dún Laoghaire - Mackintosh Park
63 Dun Laoghaire - Kilternan
111 Loughlinstown Park - Dún Laoghaire
114 Ticknock - Blackrock Station
161 Dundrum Luas Station - Rockbrook/Tibradden
184 Bray Rail Station - Newtownmountkennedy
185 Bray Rail Station - Shop River
220 Ballymun (Shangan Rd.) - Lady's Well Rd.
236 Blanchardstown Centre - Ballycoolin
238 Lady's Well Rd. - Tyrrelstown
239 Blanchardstown Centre - Liffey Valley Shopping Centre
270 Blanchardstown Centre - Dunboyne

Bus Eireann to be Privatised
Waterford City and Tramore
601 Ballybeg - The Quay
602 St Johns Pk - Patrick St
603 WIT - The Quay
604 Carrickphierish Rd - The Quay
605 Oakwood - The Quay - Waterford Regional Hospital
360/360A Waterford - WIT - Tramore

Dublin Commuter
120 Dublin - Celbridge - Clane - Edenderry- Tullamore
123 Dublin - Celbridge - Clane - Naas - Newbridge
124 Dublin - Naas - Newbridge - Portlaoise
126 Dublin - Kill - Naas - Newbridge - Kildare
130 Dublin - Naas - Kilcullen - Athy

Shane Cassidy - Sat Nov 29, 2014 17:45
This article examines the Transatlantic Free Trade agreement and it's potential repercussions. In 2010 the US mining and gas company, Renco, managed to successfully avoid having to pay compensation to Peruvian locals who were harmed due to pollution by their companies by successfully using a provision of the Peru-US Trade Agreement[1]. Not satisfied with avoiding having to pay compensation, the company has since demanded $800 million from the Peruvian government as they argue that one of the companies they own, Doe Run, was forced into bankruptcy due to an expensive pollution clean-up which the Peruvian government required Doe Run to conduct [2].
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This article examines the Transatlantic Free Trade agreement and it's potential repercussions. In 2010 the US mining and gas company, Renco, managed to successfully avoid having to pay compensation to Peruvian locals who were harmed due to pollution by their companies by successfully using a provision of the Peru-US Trade Agreement[1]. Not satisfied with avoiding having to pay compensation, the company has since demanded $800 million from the Peruvian government as they argue that one of the companies they own, Doe Run, was forced into bankruptcy due to an expensive pollution clean-up which the Peruvian government required Doe Run to conduct [2].

Related Links: Wikileaks Publishes Secret Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) | Surround The European Business Summit! | Peoples News issue No. 110 Date: 21 ? 9 ? 14 -See TTIP related articles | PEOPLES NEWS ISSUE NO. 106 DATE: 22 ? 6 ? 14 -See P 2. The world?s largest trade union demands a halt to TTIP negotiations | PEOPLES NEWS Issue No. 103 -See P2. Could TTIP contain an Internet censorship plan? | Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) Debate in Dublin ? Weds 5 Nov | Galway meeting highlights the insidious nature of TTIP | Water Charges and TTIP! | TTIP: Democracy on trial
http://StopTTIP.net | https://stop-ttip.org/ | Stop the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership


In 2010 the US mining and gas company, Renco, managed to successfully avoid having to pay compensation to Peruvian locals who were harmed due to pollution by their companies by successfully using a provision of the Peru-US Trade Agreement[1]. Not satisfied with avoiding having to pay compensation, the company has since demanded $800 million from the Peruvian government as they argue that one of the companies they own, Doe Run, was forced into bankruptcy due to an expensive pollution clean-up which the Peruvian government required Doe Run to conduct [2].

It is with this understanding that on Monday 10th March of this year, the fourth round of negotiations of the Transatlantic Free Trade Agreement ( TAFTA )or the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) got under way. In a nutshell, TTIP claims to be a free trade agreement between the US and EU which will lead to an increase in employment and income in both economic areas and create the largest free trade area in the world[3]. This agreement, if implemented, will have far-reaching and potentially very dangerous consequences and yet practically nothing has been written on the subject in the media and discussion on the matter is worryingly absent.

Total disregard has thus far been shown to the citizens of both the US and the EU as this treaty is being kept secret from the populations who will be subjected to them, though not of course from the hundreds of corporate lawyers and lobbyists who are carefully writing them[4]. The EU Commissioner for Trade, Karel de Gucht, had previously stated that he would not accept the US?s push to allow business interests a bigger role in negotiations before later stating that he was ?ready to work in that direction?[5]. Furthermore, US President Barack Obama has also further added to the erosion of the democratic process by successfully securing approval from Congress for his fast-track negotiating authority[6]. Therefore, a highly secretive, wholly undemocratic process is being pursued with the ultimate aim that the ordinary citizens will be expected to accept this deal without question.

Supporters of the treaty have argued that the negotiation and eventual implementation of this agreement will provide financial growth and jobs on both sides of the Atlantic. Responding to an article written by the journalist George Monbiot in which he criticized the TTIP, the Conservative British politician Ken Clarke stated ?By best estimates, (the TTIP) will deliver a £10bn annual boost to the British economy alone, increase collective output by as much as £180bn, create thousands of jobs, and deliver lower prices and more choice to consumers.? However these figures have already been proven to be highly exaggerated and a inflated version of reality by Ferdi de Ville of Ghent University and Gabriel Siles-Brügge of the University of Manchester, in their study of the financial benefits of the TTIP ( available here: http://bit.ly/1jeIAvK)[7] . The main beneficiaries of this agreement will undoubtedly be the businesses and corporations who will have a much broader platform where they can maximise profits at the expense of the workers and operating with practical impunity thanks to the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provision.

Of all the proposals under this treaty, the most concerning aspects of the negotiations is the inclusion of the ISDS provision. This particular inclusion is not new to the TTIP as it was first introduced to trade agreements to protect companies who wished to set up in countries where the rule of law and court system were very weak[8]. The ISDS conferred special legal powers upon companies to sue their host countries in special offshore tribunals, governed by corporate lawyers, should their rights be infringed upon. However both the EU and US possess strong judicial systems and the inclusion of this ISDS provision has proved to be highly controversial. Under the ISDS, individual corporations will be elevated to the position of equal authority among nation states and will have the ability to bypass domestic courts in place of an international arbitrary tribunal which has the power to demand the State to compensate the corporation for a perceived loss of earnings due to the State changing public policy. This compensation will naturally be passed on to taxpayers which creates a worrying situation for citizens while simultaneously awarding overwhelming power to the private companies.

For example, should a tobacco company interpret legislation, which is introduced to increase awareness of cigarettes harmful effects, as a barrier to their trading abilities then they will have a platform to take that State to this tribunal to demand compensation. This has already occurred in both Uruguay and Australia, where the largest cigarette company in the world, Phillip Morris, has taken both countries to court for introducing anti-smoking legislation as their fear of losing profits is far greater than their concern for the health Australia or Uruguay?s citizens[9]. Unfortunately this is not a new development in bi-lateral trade agreements; Lori Wallach the director of Public Citizen?s Global Trade Watch and vocal opponent of this trade deal, is on record as stating that this is nothing short of a ?corporate invasion?[10].

Several arguments have been put forward to support the negotiation in private of the TTIP, principally that if the US were to get their hands on the approach the EU were going to take towards the negotiations, or vice versa, then this would make it a lot harder to effectively negotiate. However, in order to ensure as much transparency as possible, surely once both parties have concluded negotiations on a particular subject, it should be released into the public domain. As it stands, the public is not entitled to know anything about what is being agreed upon save to be continuously told by corporate interests of the importance of accepting the free trade agreement for the sake of jobs. What this agreement between the US and EU will lead to is a serious curtailing of the governance authority of nation states, to the benefit of corporations. A society constructed and controlled by business interests is highly destructive to the social fabric and all measures must be put in place to combat this. A resounding rejection of any agreement which hasn?t been first presented to the public is the only way to ensure that overreaching corporate dominance doesn?t become a reality.

[1] http://www.foe.org/news/archives/2012-04-pay-the-pollut...ce-fo

[2] http://www.citizen.org/documents/renco-memo-03-12.pdf

[3] http://ec.europa.eu/trade/policy/in-focus/ttip/about-ttip/

[4] In discussion with Noam Chomsky, Jan 08 2014

[5] http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/6e9b7190-9a65-11e3-8e06-00144...V6YIc

[6] http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/bc0e78ea-7955-11e3-91ac-...3mJIp

[7] http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/usappblog/2013/12/17/eu-us-free-...rade/

[8] http://www.consumersinternational.org/media/1398522/tac...n.pdf

[9] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-08-22/philip-morris-....html

[10] http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/12/06/the-corporate-in...sion/

T - Sun Nov 02, 2014 00:07
Massive turnout at local water charges protests exceeds expectations
Over 100 separate local demonstrations took place today (Sat Nov 1st) against the Water Charges and for the Right 2 Water. Organisers estimate conservatively that over 150,000 were out on the streets today to send a message to this government that they won't accept paying for water twice and having it privatised later.

People realize that all the false promises and allowances will eventually be dropped and the long term result will be that a privatised water company will prey on the people with massive hikes in charges and big fat bonuses for themselves.

There were protests from Cork & Kerry to Wexford to Dublin to Limerick to Galway to Sligo to Donegal to Cavan to Dundalk and all over the Midlands. There has never been anything like it perhaps since the foundation of the state. The people are truly fed up and are determined and will not be abused by the political technocrats of big Capital that is robbing every social gain our forebears fought hard to get over the past century.
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Sligo says No to Water Charges

Over 100 separate local demonstrations took place today (Sat Nov 1st) against the Water Charges and for the Right 2 Water. Organisers estimate conservatively that over 150,000 were out on the streets today to send a message to this government that they won't accept paying for water twice and having it privatised later.

People realize that all the false promises and allowances will eventually be dropped and the long term result will be that a privatised water company will prey on the people with massive hikes in charges and big fat bonuses for themselves.

There were protests from Cork & Kerry to Wexford to Dublin to Limerick to Galway to Sligo to Donegal to Cavan to Dundalk and all over the Midlands. There has never been anything like it perhaps since the foundation of the state. The people are truly fed up and are determined and will not be abused by the political technocrats of big Capital that is robbing every social gain our forebears fought hard to get over the past century.

Related Links: Water Charge FAQ - your questions answered | Right2Water National Day of Local Protests - Sat Nov 1st | Right2Water National Protest against Water charges - Sat Oct 11th @ 2pm | No-one will be safe from water charges if we don't stand and fight | Why Irish Water Will Be Sold Off | The New Water Barons | Blockades of Water Meter installations in Cork and Dublin | The Irish water debacle: a timeline | http://www.Right2Water.ie/
Other Experiences: Resisting Water Privatisation in Bolivia and Ireland Bolivian Protesters end Water Privatization in La Paz, El Alto

For lots more pictures check each of the various campaign pages from around the country.

Campaign Facebook Pages: Carlow, facebook | Clare, Ennis facebook | Dublin, Blanchardstown, facebook | Dublin, Blanchardstown, facebook | Dublin, Ballyfermot facebook | Dublin, Blanchardstown facebook | Dublin, Dun Laoghaire, facebook | Dublin, Dundrum facebook | Dublin, Ringsend, facebook | Dublin, Tallaght facebook | Fingal, Swords, facebook | Galway, facebook | Kildare, Athy, facebook | Kildare, Celbridge, facebook | Kildare, Leixlip, facebook | Kildare, Naas, facebook | Kildare, Newbridge facebook | Kilkenny, facebook | Louth, Ardee facebook | Louth, Dundalk, facebook | Sligo, facebook | Wexford, New Ross facebook | Wexford, Gorey facebook | Wexford, Wexford Town, facebook | Wicklow, Bray, facebook | Wicklow, Greystones, facebook | Wicklow, Wicklow, facebook | Wicklow, Arklow, facebook


Statement from the Right2Water campaign:

Despite torrential rain, our expectations have been massively exceeded, with well over 150,000 people coming out in every neighbourhood, town and village to send a clear message to the Government: water is a human right, and we demand the abolition of domestic water charges.

Today showed the strength of public opposition to water charges in communities up and down the country. The time has come for the Government to accept the will of the people, abolish domestic water charges and return to the drawing board. Until they do, the Right2Water campaign will keep up the pressure.

"Details of a major rally outside the Dail on December 10th - International Human Rights Day - will be announced during the coming days"


Location of Water Charges Protests today:

Carlow Town, Cavan Town, Clare (Ennis & Shannon), Cork (Bandon, Clonakility, Cork City, Fermoy, Mallow, Youghal), Donegal (Ballyshannon, Letterkenny, Lifford), Dublin (Artane, Ballyfermot, Blanchardstown, Cabra(x2), Clondalkin, Coolock, Crumlin, Donaghmede/Kilbarrack, Donnybrook, Donnycarney, Drimnagh, Dun Laoghaire, Dundrum/Ballinteer, Finglas, Greenhills, Harolds Cross, Lucan, North Inner City, Pearse St, Phibsboro, Rialto, Ringsend, Stoneybatter, Tallaght, Walkinstown, York St, Swords), Galway City, Kerry Tralee, Kildare (Athy, Celbridge, Leixlip, Maynooth, Naas, Newbridge), Kilkenny, Laois (Portarlington, Laois County Hall) Letrim Carrick-on-Shannon, Limerick City x4, Longford, Louth (Drogheda, Dundalk), Meath (Navan, Kells, Ashbourne, Duleek), Mayo (Ballina, Castlebar), Monaghan Town, Offaly (Birr, Edenderry, Tullamore) Roscommon (Boyle, Roscommon Town), Sligo Town, Tipperary (Carrick-on-suir, Cashel, Nenagh, Roscrea, Tipperary Town), Waterford (Portlaw, Waterford City), Westmeath (Athlone, Mullingar), Wexford (Enniscorthy, Gorey, New Ross, Wexford Town), Wicklow (Blessington, Bray, Greystones, Wicklow Town, Arklow)


Here's a roundup of some of the numbers for local protests around the country:

Over 10,000 in 3 protests in Donegal -8,000 in Letterkenny, 4,000 in Ballyshannon
1,000 Lifford
4,000 Sligo
1,000 Carrick on Shannon in Leitrim.
3,000 Galway
2,500 Clare
3,000 Cavan
3,000 Navan
5,000 Waterford City
2,500 Wicklow
2,00 Greystones
2,000 in Ashbourne
2,000 in Newbridge
500 Maynooth
1,200 Longford
3,000 Mullingar
Over 40,000 throughout Dublin with over 10,000 assembling in O'Connell St.
4,000 Ballyfermot
4,000 Walkinstown
3,000 Clondalkin/Lucan
2,000 Tallaght
3,000 Dundrum
5,000 Swords
Over 400 marched to the to local FG offices in Bandon
10,000 in Cork
2,000 Fermoy
Over 400 marched to the to local FG offices in Bandon
1,000 Clonakilty
500 Mallow
500 Youghal
2,000 Fermoy
5,000 in various Limerick Suburbs for the 2nd Sat in a row.
9,000 Drogheda
2,000 Kilkenny
1,500 Gorey
2,000 Wexford Town
2,000 Tullamore
1,000 Tralee

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