Let’s give George a nice big welcome

WHY are some of Ireland’s TDs and MEPs trying to stop George Bush’s visit to Ireland in June? Rubbish. I think people should welcome his visit because it will give many of us the opportunity to show what we think of George Bush, his deeds and his neo-conservative ideology.

Far more dangerous than Al-Qaida and its various off-shoots is the neo-conservative wish for a “we’re all in this together” response from people in the west on the so-called “war on terror”.

The Spanish people have given their answer to one part of the coalition-of-the-arrogant and we in Ireland should ensure that the visiting media circus here for the July summit will see that a huge proportion of the Irish people despise George Bush and his neo-con regime.

We have a perfect right to join in the debate raging throughout the west on the ‘terror’ issue. We have a perfect right to highlight the appalling human rights record of the Bush administration, particularly in relation to the Guantanamo Bay concentration camp. We have a perfect right to oppose the illegal invasion of Iraq. 

And we should take the opportunity to do so.

Personally, I will be disappointed if a similar number of people don’t show up to demonstrate against George Bush as did before the US/British invasion last year.

What is emerging here is that one political ideology, neo-conservatism, is engaged in political violence on a massive scale, and they want the rest of us to line up behind them.

Since 9/11 the US and Britain have been responsible for over 12,000 civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those are the minimum figures I can find from reliable sources. I don’t think the Al-Quaida total has reached 4,000 for all the barbarism of their violence.

Neo-conservatism is a dangerous ideology. It is based on a belief that Judeo-Christian civilisation is superior to all others. Its backers strongly support the death penalty, buying heavily into the ‘eye-for-an-eye’ part of the bible. US foreign policy is to be used to project US interests regardless of the consequences. It is made clear that not only is democracy to be supported but that a free-market economy is also part of the deal. Witness the attempted overthrow of democratically elected Hugo Chavez in Venezuela and the actual overthrow  of Jean-Bertrand Aristide in Haiti. 

Meanwhile the dictatorships across the Middle-East and Central-Asia are George Bush’s best buddies. Israel still has a licence to do what it wishes to the Palestinians.

A recent edition of the Economist magazine had four pictures on its cover (Aznar, Howard, Blair and Bush) together with a headline of “One down – three to go?”

It is finally dawning on the Right that many decent people despise them almost as much as they despise the sick fanatics on the wilder shores of Islamism.

A defeat of the neo-cons is indispensable to progress on this planet. Nobody should absent themselves from that debate. Let’s take it to the streets.