About 70 people took part, far less than at the Dublin anti-war parades, there were no passionate speeches from politicians and only one paper seller. This was a direct action protest not a carnival. Some people did infiltrate the terminal which was pretty empty, but a solid phalanx of airport police and Gardai meant that any mass entrance was impossible. A protest took place outside the terminal first with the outlines of bodies being drawn on the ground slogans chanted etc. A minutes silence was observed for the dead of the war and then word filtered through that US marines were reboarding their plane.
The protesters proceeded to the fence near the plane and let the US marines know what we thought of them. Nervous airport police and Gardai became more aggressive pushing and shoving a number of the protestors. Some of the barbed wire atop the fence became detached. One courageous soul legged it across the margins towards the plane but was tackled to the ground and arrested. Another protestor was arrested when Gardai pushed some people to the ground. There was a stand off for about 20 minutes and then we withdrew in an orderly fashion the message given and a marker put down.
What we could have done with 3,000 people will remain in the realms of speculation until those opposed to war realise that direct action is the way forward.
Solidarity with those charged with offences as a result of the days events will be needed all those concerned with justice should keep in touch with this.
Whilst the numbers were relatively small, about 70, the focus was good and the energy levels high.
We got more media than 3,000 people marching in circles in Dublin, we got a direct message to the US army, thanks to the presence of the US marines on the day. We were certainly noted by the state and its representatives on the day, the pigs whether airport or gardai.
There were two arrests and there are likely to be three people charged with various offences most serious the comrade arrested inside the wire near the US warplane. It is now absolutely vital that solid solidarity work is carried out for these three and no one is left to face the consequences alone. Each group should be prepared to fundraise and agitate for their benefit.
Some criticism is valid of the protest, yes we could have been better organised this would have needed a bit more fore planning everyone is at fault here. But spontaneous action can be extremely useful sometimes and every individual surely confronted with The US military sauntering around Shannon airport is not going to be able to stay completely passive.
We agreed on a non-violent protest many people, self included, were shoved pushed and quite aggressively at that, by Gardai and airport pigs people did exercise a great deal of restraint. The attempt to push through the door was ill advised. It was never going to succeed and could have resulted in a fight. One we could not win.
Confronting the marines was good. We offered no violence. Crossing the wire I don't know, it was certainly tempting but with the penalties so high and our numbers so low not a realistic option. That said I defend the right of anyone to do so.
The Shannon protest demonstarted clearly if it was needed the usefulness of direct action and the misdirection of our efforts in marching in circles in Dublin. If any real effort had been put into the Shannon issue all along the anti-war campaign could have been taken more seriously.
Anarchists especially need to insure that the next round is fought where it matters where the actual collaboration is taking place or at the centres of power, no more paper selling, recruitment fair, feel good, parades in Dublin.
More reports at Indymedia
Neither Fundamentalist nor imperialist barbarism!
International anarchist statement on WTC attacks and Afghan war also in French, Spanish, Danish and Portuguese
[A Personal report from a Workers Solidarity Movement members of an event they took part in or attended, these reports are posted to the Ainriail list when first written] Note: Pictures are ultra compressed a week or so after they are uploaded to this site to save space on the server.
Using these pictures: If you want to use these pictures for the web or other publications then please credit them as follows : Workers Solidarity Movement, http://struggle.ws/wsm.html.
If you normally pay for pictures through an agency or freelance photographer then we request the same fee (which will go to our international solidarity fund) as we don't want to do anyone out of a job! The versions on the web are compressed versions of the originals, if you are using them for printed publication you should email us with the picture titles so we can email you the higher quality versions.