The Irish government supports Israel

Despite the posturing of Irish politicians about how the Irish people support Palestine, these same politicians have done nothing to reflect this overwhelming support. Instead, they have done the opposite.

Almost any time Irish politicians have commented on the ongoing genocide against Palestinians, they have opened with a condemnation of the resistance. Even when Micheál Martin announced that Ireland would join South Africa’s ICJ case regarding genocide, he implied that the Palestinian resistance campaign on 7 October which saw a number of hostages taken, was somehow comparable to what is being inflicted Gaza:

What we saw on October 7th in Israel, and what we are seeing in Gaza now, represents the blatant violation of international humanitarian law on a mass scale.

This view, of course, ignores the fact that what has been happening in Palestine did not begin on 7 October, but is the continuation of a century long colonial effort against Palestinians.

When Leo Varadkar was wining-and-dining with Joe Biden for St. Patrick’s Day, he repeatedly talked about “both sides”, while speaking of the need for humanitarian support.

Many have pointed out Joe Biden’s own hypocrisy of dropping humanitarian aid whilst continuing to supply bombs to be dropped on Palestinians, but we in Ireland must look at ourselves as well.

The Irish state continues to allow Shannon Airport to be used by the US military as it funnels munitions to Zionist forces, and instead of stopping these flights, it has arrested three activists who sought to disrupt them.

It is not only American-made material however which is going towards this war machine.

Ireland has seen the growth of a domestic military industry, primarily around “dual-use” equipment. Dual-use equipment is heavily regulated as it can be used for either civilian or military purposes. Oftentimes this distinction is used to restrict trade with states like Iran, Syria, or North Korea on the grounds of preventing human rights abuses. In the past year alone, Irish exports of such material to Israel increased seven-fold, from €11m to €70m.

These are not the actions of a government responsive to the demands and wishes of the Irish people, as seen by the fact that the Occupied Territories Bill – which would only ban trade with internationally-recognised illegal settlements – was dropped from the Programme of Government despite passing both the Oireachtas and Seanad.

Instead, the Irish government is far more interested in continuing to protect its own interests and the interests of their capitalist counterparts in America and “Israel”.

That is why it is up to the Irish people themselves to assert their solidarity regardless of the government’s policy. That is why CYM activists have consistently engaged in and supported actions calling for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions, such as those being carried out regularly in Belfast.

These actions see produce that is on the BDS list or produced in “Israel” taken off the shelves in multiple stores by activists, and left in trolleys. This approach has yielded local successes, and it was this campaign which led to O’Neills dropping Puma products in November 2023.

The Irish government will not act against Israel, that is why the Irish people must.

When we act together for Palestine, we will learn the power we have against those at home.

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