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(en) Wildcat #2 - Anti-War Activists On Trial - AF/ASF Ireland

From Al S <klasbatalemo@yahoo.ie>
Date Thu, 31 Jul 2003 20:56:41 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E

Two anti-war activists, including Mairtin O’Cathain an
ASF comrade, are to go on trial at Lisburn Court on
Monday 8th of September. They were arrested as a
result of peaceful anti-war actions during Bush and
Blair’s war summit at Hillsborough Castle on Monday
8th of April.

The following day in Belfast the anti-war protestors
attended a Stop the War Coalition one minute silence
and mass “die in” in front of Belfast City Hall.
Protestors also blocked the road outside the City Hall
in a mass sit down protest and were brutally attacked
by PSNI riot squad. A number of people were beaten off
the road by the cops, trailed off and arrested. After
a stand off, and the trailing off by the hair of a
woman anti-war protestor, the riot cops backed down.
Shortly afterwards protestors lifted their blockade of
the road.

Peter Bunting and Alisa Keane of NIC – ICTU issued a
press release in the name of the Stop the War
Coalition which condemned the protestors, insinuated
that they were violent and attempted to appease the
police. The same police who had clearly acted on
behalf of the forces of oppression and imperialism
responsible for the unjust and reprehensible war
against the people of Iraq.

NIC – ICTU’s record throughout the anti-war campaign
speaks for itself. NIC–ICTU effectively prevented the
Coalition from expressing solidarity with two pupils
suspended from Abbey High in Newry for taking part in
anti-war activity. Anti-war protestors at Shannon have
also been attacked by Peter Bunting as “violent
lunatics” for attempting to take non-violent direct
action against US military use of Shannon during the
war. Together with those protestors engaged in
non-violent direct action in Hillsborough and at
Belfast City Hall they have been condemned as
anarchists and subversives.

The NIC – ICTU press release was issued at a time when
Hillsborough was blockaded by the PSNI, Bush’s
security, and the military to allow a War Summit to be
foisted on the people of Northern Ireland. Meanwhile,
civilian casualties, mounting in Iraq with the
bombardment of Baghdad and allegedly “anti-war”
politicians, lent Bush and Blair’s War Summit a veneer
of respectability by meeting the war mongers. In
issuing a statement distancing the Stop the War
Coalition from an act of peaceful civil disobedience
in Belfast NIC – ICTU effectively endorsed the attack
on those protestors by the police.
The statement was issued without consultation with any
of the delegates to the Coalition many of whom
expressed outrage at the next Coalition meeting at the
content of the statement which had been issued in
their name. A review was promised but with the scaling
down of the war on Iraq to an occupation NIC – ICTU
have preferred to let the Coalition wind down quietly
and no more meetings have been called.
SIPTU delegate to the Coalition, Jason Brannigan told

“Myself and a number of other delegates demanded a
retraction of and apology for the Press Release issued
on the 8th of April in the name of the Stop the War
Coalition by NIC –ICTU. They attempted to fob people
off with the promise of a review and have instead let
the Coalition quietly melt away. To the bureaucrats at
NIC – ICTU I say this, I would rather be associated
with the principled and dignified anarchists and
subversives who were the subject of brutal police
attack, and all those who took action and were beaten,
harassed and arrested throughout the course of
anti-war activity across Ireland, than with the
full-time bureaucrats and paid officials who leach off
the labour movement and who have no notion of
solidarity, principle or sincerity”.

A protest is to be held at Lisburn Court to draw
attention back onto the real criminals in this war
-the war criminals Bush and Blair.


>From the pages of Wildcat #2, joint bulletin of the
Anarchist Federation (Ireland) and Anarcho-Syndicalist
Federation. To distribute, contact us at:


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