Wednesday, February 15, 2006


Anti-war activist blasts Catholic Church

Everyone must agree with me! I spotted an interesting letter in the Irish Examiner from the Spokesman for the 'Mid West Alliance against the War', Edward Horgan, who launched a scathing attack on a very unlikely group for not being vocal about the war in Iraq - the Catholic Church!

Yes according to Mr Horgan, the Catholic Church are an enormous let-down due to the fact they don't agree with Mr Horgan and his views.

I have taken the time to challenge Mr Horgan's letter which you can read for yourself here. Mr Horgan writes:

"Most Irish clergy have been ignoring one of the most important social, political and moral issues facing the Irish people in recent years.

"There seems to be an unwritten new rule that bishops must not become engaged in political matters, as if politics were the sole preserve of politicians, and no business of bishops, or even of the people."

I'm sorry Mr Horgan, but surely the job of religion is to try and bring people together, as opposed to commenting on divisive issues?

"Political corruption is one issue that Irish bishops should be addressing, but they have been largely silent on this for fear perhaps of being reminded of child sex abuse scandals."

No, I would say it's down to what I wrote above, not because of sex scandals.

"Bishop Willie Walsh has been one of most outspoken and courageous spokespersons for the Irish Catholic clergy. However, he has been virtually silent, as have the vast majority of the Irish clergy (the Church of Ireland primate is one of the exceptions), on the most grievous moral and political issue since its foundation of the State - our participation in the Iraq war through Bishop Walsh’s own backyard, Shannon airport."

OK, let's set this straight - we are NOT a participant in the Iraq war and the issue of Iraq is most certainly NOT the most "grievous moral and political issue" since the foundation of the State. What appalling, ridiculous comments!

"He allowed Travellers to use his front lawn thereby giving a strong moral and social message to his flock in Co Clare. Remaining silent on US military and CIA use of Shannon airport, however, is inexcusable given that this has been an important factor in the unlawful killing of over 100,000 Iraqi people, and in facilitating torture."

A cynical comment about the Travellers in my opinion. As for the comments about Shannon, I for one am proud that the US have been granted permission to use Shannon airport as they battle the scumbags who murdered Ken Bigley and Margaret Hassan. Mr Horgan would do well to stop trotting out the now-boring, anti-war mantras. "Unlawful killing", "100,000 people" (?), "facilitating torture" etc. Zzzzz.

"This moral failure applies not only to the Irish clergy, but also to all Irish people who consider that economic interests are more important than the deaths of over 40,000 children in Iraq."

Oh boy. I supported the War in Iraq as I believed it gave future generations of Iraqis the chance of a better future. It had nothing to do with "economic interests". Your mind is closed, Horgan!

"Bishop Walsh and other clergy in Co Clare were invited to a multi-denominational prayer service at Shannon just before Christmas last. This was intended to commemorate the innocents killed in Iraq and the recent deaths of two Irish peace activists.

"Not one member of the clergy agreed to attend, and the service was cancelled. There was no room on the front lawn of compassion."

I applaud the decision of the clergy. Judging by your angry and unsettling rants towards those who disagree with you, I think it's fair to say they made the right decision! Perhaps they didn't want to stand on the front lawn of pretentiousness?

"Some people still choose to deny the Holocaust. Now many Irish people wish to deny Ireland’s participation in crimes against humanity."

Two things - First of all, kudos on the Nazi reference, Mr Horgan. I was afraid you were going to neglect it altogether. Second of all, Ireland is NOT participating in crimes against humanity. Dear oh dear. We are a neutral country that is allowing the US the use our airport. That's it. Get over it.

I must say that anti-war protesters like Mr Horgan make me sick. Just because you take a different line than they do, they question your morals! How very patronising! I'd like to remind UI readers about Mr Horgan's own solution to the problem of terrorism which he offered up in 2005:

"We need to make peace on terror, not war."

Wow. And If you think that's bad, listen to his call to the Irish people to attend a Shannon protest in 2005:

"See you at Shannon if you value peace and cherish humanity."

Again, wow. Wouldn't it be nice to live in a world like Mr Horgan's where every issue is in strict black and white terms? Actually, no. It wouldn't.

I supported and continue to support the War in Iraq but I've nothing against those who choose to oppose it (except for the anti-American crowd). However, Mr Horgan chooses to insinuate that people like me are immoral because we take a different view than he does. Not even the Catholic Church is safe from this arrogant man! I respect the various views on Iraq but I have no respect for Mr Horgan after his tirade.

Your petty rants against those who oppose you are becoming tiresome, Mr Horgan. Consider taking up a new hobby. How about gardening?

Maybe then more people will come stand on your front lawn! I wouldn't bet on it though!


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