The war in Ukraine has taken thousands of lives. Militarisation is escalating. US military spending has reached record levels, with $46 bn on Ukraine military spending alone. The US will supply Ukraine with horrific cluster bombs and depleted uranium munitions.
Germany will increase its defence budget to a record amount next year, outstripping a NATO target of spending at least 2% of output annually on the military.
The FF-FG government, despite Ireland’s official neutral status, is rowing in deeper behind war. Once committed to sending only non-lethal support, it has now committed to training Ukrainian forces in the use of weaponry.
Micheal Martin has declared that we must ‘re-examine’ our neutrality. Fine Gael wants to get rid of the ‘triple lock’, which requires approval, from the Government the Dáil and the UN before any deployment of Irish troops.
The Government ‘consultative conferences’ this summer were stacked with defence industry advisors, military, and security experts. They were intended to convince us that our neutrality was old-fashioned, but it backfired. The conferences were disrupted and met with protests.
Consistently over 60% of the Irish people support neutrality. One poll has revealed that 87% of the population want to see a ceasefire between Russia and Ukraine.
People Before Profit has signed the pledge of the Irish Neutrality League. The INL is a broad-based civil society campaign, supported by Sinn Féin and Independents in the Dáil.
The Irish Neutrality League will be holding a forum in Trinity College Dublin on September 28th. September 30th marks the beginning of a week of action called for by the Vienna Peace Summit earlier this year to demand an immediate ceasefire and peace negotiations to end the war in Ukraine.
The Cork Neutrality League are holding a seminar on neutrality on September 30th at 7pm in UCC. They are also launching the Afri booklet, ‘A Force for Good? Reflections on Neutrality and the Future for Irish Defence’ on Tuesday October 10 at 7pm in the Quay Coop, Cork. A national demonstration is planned in Dublin on Saturday, November 4th.