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Tag Archives: Margaretta D’Arcy

Festival of Feminism returns to Ennis

THE Clare Women’s Network has announced the return of the successful Festival of Feminisms to Ennis this year. Silence + Voice, A Festival of Feminisms 2017 will be held at Dánlann an Chláir on October 7 and 8. According to a spokesperson for the organisers, “After a hugely successful festival in 2016, it was decided that we needed to continue and deepen the conversations started last year. Once again, we are offering 400 participants an opportunity to reflect on silence and voice in the journey of women in Ireland. “It will be a radical, challenging, exciting and engaging weekend, filled with debate and learning, music and song, drama and poetry. The vision for the festival is that everyone who comes will actively participate and, in return, will leave energised and excited, with a renewed sense of empowerment.” Speakers at the festival will include Brid Keenan, trauma expert; Siobhan Madden, transformative community educator; Mary McDermott, feminist philosopher; Sharon O’Halloran, CEO of …

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Guantanamo Granny writes her Scéal

DUBBED Ireland’s Guantanamo Granny, peace activist Margaretta D’Arcy was in Scéal Eile in Ennis this week launching her book of the same name. The book chronicles Margaretta’s early life through to her battle against Shannon Airport being used to facilitate war, which ultimately led to her being sent to prison. The first-hand account of D’Arcy’s struggle to open a debate on Shannon Airport is told in a witty way. It follows her journey from her roots in the peace movement to discovering Ireland’s “dirty little secrets” through to direct action, courtroom drama and imprisonment. Speaking to The Clare Champion, she said she could thank the media for giving her the book title. “My story was taken up by the press who christened me Guantanamo Granny. The one thing one loves is having a brand name. I love it,” she said. One of the things she explores is her time in prison. “Limerick jail is absolutely dreadful, it’s kind of like …

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War experience inspires Margaretta’s activism

People always ask Margaretta D’Arcy how did she become an anti-war activist? In her new book, Ireland’s Guantanamo Granny, the Galway-based activist answers the question by showing how her early experiences of war motivated her to campaign for peace. “I’m nearly 82 and not many people will remember the effect of World War II. My family had been living in Dublin but when I was about four or five, my father was transferred. He was a civil servant with the Department of Agriculture and we were to go and live in England,” she says. “A couple of days later came the news about the beginning of the war. The whole of London was like a war zone, with all these barrage balloons and sirens going off. It was an extremely frightening experience.” Ms D’Arcy says what followed was “panic” to get the family back to Ireland. “I think when a child has that trauma and the effect of the war …

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Joint Oireachtas Committee to visit Shannon

A delegation from the the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Public Service Oversight and Petitions will travel to Shannon on this Thursday for a series of meetings on the US military use of the airport and Irish airspace. The delegation will meet with representatives from the Shannon Airport Authority, the local gardaí and Shannonwatch. The visit to Shannon follows a petition and presentation to the Committee in June by Dr Edward Horgan, Margaretta D’Arcy and Dr John Lannon of the Shannonwatch organisation. Chairman of the committee, Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn said the visit to Shannon Airport is a valuable opportunity to follow up on the petition by Shannonwatch earlier this year. “Central to the petition by Shannonwatch is a call for the Government to investigate the use of Shannon Airport and Irish airspace for the transit of US armed troops, munitions and other war material, and for the refuelling of CIA-associated aircraft involved in extraordinary rendition,” he said.

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Peace activist back in prison

Eighty-year-old peace activist, Margaretta D’Arcy  was brought to Limerick Prison on Wednesday  after she presented herself at a garda station in Galway. On June 24, Ms D’Arcy of 10 St Brigid’s Place, Woodquay, Galway and Niall Farrell, a 60-year-old man with an address at Ballynacloghy, Maree, Galway were both found guilty of interfering with the proper use of Shannon Airport on September 1, 2013, at a sitting of Ennis District Court. The defendants were sentenced to two weeks in prison, which was suspended on condition that they enter a bond to stay away from restricted areas of Shannon Airport, something Ms D’Arcy refused to do. Speaking on Wednesday, Ms D’Arcy’s son Finn Arden said, “She brought herself to the garda station in Galway at 11am this morning and then she was carted off in a garda car to Limerick.” Speaking about his mother’s frame of mind on Wednesday, he said, “Gardaí came to the house earlier and they wanted to …

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Anti-war protestors guilty of interfering with Shannon Airport

Two anti-war protestors have been found guilty of interfering with the proper use of Shannon Airport by going onto the main runway last September. Margaretta Darcy aged 80 of 10 St Brigid’s Place, Woodquay, Galway and Niall Farrell aged 60 of Ballynacloghy, Maree, County Galway pleaded not guilty to a single charge of interfering with the proper use of Shannon Airport on September 1, 2013 contrary to the Air Navigation Transport Act 1950. The trial opened at Ennis District Court before Judge Patrick Durcan on Tuesday where evidence was heard from Independent Deputy Clare Daly TD, Irish Times security analyst Tom Clonan, Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairéad Maguire, University of Limerick lecturer John Lannon, peace activist Ed Horgan, airport police officers, Shannon airport officials and gardaí. During the hearing evidence was given that the two defendants were found to be on the main runway of Shannon Airport on the date in question, wearing orange boiler suits and carrying placards stating …

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Public talk with Margaretta D’Arcy

SHANNONWATCH, in conjunction with The Bottom Dog publication, is to host a public talk by peace activist, writer and actress, Margaretta D’Arcy next week. It will take place at the Mechanics Institute, Limerick n on Thursday next at 7pm. Margaretta served almost 10 weeks of a three month prison sentence for protesting the use of Shannon Airport by US military, and was only released on March 22. She will talk about her life of activism and the ongoing campaign to rid Shannon of the US military. Margaretta is a member of Aosdána and is well known for addressing issues relating to Irish nationalism, civil liberties and women’s rights in her work. In January of this year she was imprisoned for a September 2012 peace action on the runway at Shannon Airport, after she refused to sign an undertaking not to return to the restricted areas of the airport. She has repeatedly pointed out that the runways at Shannon are directly …

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Appeal to release anti-war protestor

THE Galway Alliance Against War is to hold a protest at the constituency office of Labour TD Derek Nolan today, concerning the jailing of GAAW member Margaretta D’Arcy. The peace group claims that the Labour Party have reneged on its pledge in the Programme for Government that the US military presence at Shannon airport would end with Ireland adopting the stance taken by Switzerland forbidding foreign military planes involved in war to use its airports and airspace.  Protests are also taking place around including the Dept of Justice in Dublin at 1pm and outside Limerick Prison at 5pm. The group is to hand in letter calling on Mr Nolan asking him to demand publicly the immediate release of Margaretta D’Arcy from Limerick Prison. “We also seek that your government adhere to the commitment given in its Programme for Government, which states: “We will enforce the prohibition on the use of Irish airspace, airports and related facilities for purpose not in line …

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