The Irish Anti-war Movement opposes the visit to Ireland by US President Donald Trump for many reasons but primarily because he is currently the world's top warmonger. The IAWM is calling on all Irish people who oppose war and racism to protest vigorously during his visit here. We call on those who wish to show their disdain with Trump to join the peace camp in Shannon Airport and the protests happening elsewhere this week including at the Spire in Dublin on Thursday evening, 6 June.
Donald Trump has escalated US militarism abroad, thus making the world a more dangerous place. One of his first actions after being elected was to massively increase US defence spending, money that could be used to alleviate the hardship endured by so many poor Americans.
He gloated at the dropping of the 'mother of all bombs' on Afghanistan, which was an empty, ultra-violent gesture that caused many deaths and much environmental damage but had little impact on the Taliban. He continues to send US troops to the USA's longest running war ever in that country.
He has trampled on the democratic protections built into the American constitution. He has sought to obstruct the will of Congress to stop supporting the Saudi-led war in Yemen, and to go around them illegally to build his border wall.
He oversaw one of the most ferocious military bombardments of the war in Syria - that of the almost total destruction of the city of Raqqa - thus helping to prolong the immense suffering of the Syrian people.
His provocative moving of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem gave the green light to Israel for yet further suppression of the Palestinians and instigated the killing of over 60 Palestinian civilians in one day at the border in Gaza on 15 May 2018.
He has withdrawn from the nuclear treaties with Iran and Russia and the climate change treaty, and steadily worked to put more money into the pockets of the super-rich and to degrade US institutions. He has recently ratcheted up tensions with Iran, declaring the Iranian Revolutionary Guards 'a terrorist organisation' and sending American nuclear warships and planes and more American troops to the Gulf area, creating fears of yet another war in the Middle East.
He and his fellow warmongers Pompeo and Bolton have also meddled in the internal politics of Venezuela, calling for regime change and imposing even more punitive sanctions. "Sanctions may sound mild," US born member of the IAWM Steering Committee Glenda Cimino pointed out, "but have no doubt that 'sanctions' are killing people in North Korea and in Venezuela. Trump wants to hurt people, to force them to do what he wants. It is his modus vivendi in the world."
Ms. Cimino noted further that "A new paper from the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), by economists Mark Weisbrot and Jeffrey Sachs, finds that economic sanctions implemented by the Trump administration since August 2017 have already caused tens of thousands of deaths and are rapidly worsening the humanitarian crisis."
Trump has also increased US support for the murderous, totalitarian regime in Saudi Arabia, refused to condemn the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and has personally approved massive arms sales which will be used to continue to kill mainly civilians in Yemen.
Trump has also perpetuated fear and hatred against migrants and refugees many of them fleeing wars that are the result of failed US foreign policy. He has specifically targeted people from Muslim countries thus increasing Xenophobia and Islamophobia, which has inspired attacks on Muslims around the world, as horribly witnessed in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Glenda Cimino said:
"Trump is a dangerously delusional narcissist, a liar with an exaggerated sense of self-importance, an excessive need for admiration and a total lack of empathy. His racist and sexist attitudes and behaviour have given licence to the worst of his supporters. He has never acted in a presidential capacity to unify his country, but spends his time admiring dictators, accommodating fascists, and promoting weapons sales, wars, threatening destruction of other countries and applying more and more punitive sanctions and tariffs around the world. He is an abusive bully on the personal and the political levels, always inventing enemies and scapegoats."
Trump has also launched a secret case against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, which has resulted in the imprisonment of both Assange and Chelsea Manning (who had been held in solitary confinement - a form of torture - for years). The arrest of Assange has been described as an "attack on freedom of expression, international law and right to asylum". Mark Price of the IAWM noted that: "the recently announced charges against Assange from the US is not just an attack on brave whistle-blowers but on investigative journalism itself. We must urgently protest against this vicious clampdown on free speech before it's too late."
The IAWM says that Irish taxpayers' money should not be used to protect such a warmonger as Donald Trump on his short visit here, which seems oriented mainly around a private visit to his golf course. Yet nearly 2,000 Garda are being drafted in to turn the area into Fortress Shannon - at a cost of nearly €10 million to the Irish taxpayers. Bringing a heavily armed nuclear submarine and a US warship off the coast of Ireland, and surface to air missiles around Shannon, should be unthinkable in a neutral country, and even presents the additional threat of a possible accident.
Jim Roche, PRO of the IAWM noted that:
"Irish people who care about social justice and peace in the world should send a clear message to both President Trump and the Irish Government that this racist, sexist war-monger is not welcome in Ireland."