Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Finally! The media goes for Libertas


Finally, finally, finally, somebody is sitting up and taking notice. To be fair to the IT's Colm Keena, he was the first national journalist to do so, in today's edition (sub needed).

There have been mutterings of this for months. The Galway business community are up in arms at 'one of their own' (Ganley) departing from party line (IBEC, Galway Chamber, most recently the Irish Alliance for Europe Western branch) in such a drastic way.

Dr Chris Coughlan, incoming President of Chambers Ireland, is a founding member of Libertas, along with Dr Roger Downer (former University of Limerick President), Eamonn Cregan (Downer's right-hand man in UL), and a host of Ganley employees... who work for his military communications company, Rivada Networks. The majority of Rivada contracts are with the US military. Ulick McEvaddy is another big Libertas-head.

So where is the connection?
Downer - best remembered in UL for his wonderful fundraising techniques... in the US.
Ganley - gets all his business (multi million, at the very least) from the US military.
McEvaddy - does all his business with the US military.
Other founders - work for Ganley.

What a cuddly organisation. Add to that the noxious John McGuirk and the neo-conservative politico David Cochrane, and you really have something special.

To be fair to another person I usually don't have much time for, Lucinda Creighton seems to have press released about this ages ago. But where was the pick-up?

The possibility of any involvement by the US military in an Irish referendum brings, to me at least, a shiver down my spine. This is like something from a Tom Clancy novel. And we should be, not just pooh-poohing, but really really worried about it.

The world's biggest 'defender of democracy' is trying to interfere in a democratic decision of the Irish people. And Libertas claim to be worried about our sovereignty!


  1. Imagine being a begger in the middle of that lot looking for a bite to eat!

    I'd no idea Downer was involved, I can't understand his motivation, besides his atlantacist connections, UL was built more than anything on EU funding. I really would appreciate to hear Dr. Downer's motivation in opposing Lisbon (does he? or is he not campagning?).

  2. Creighton's press release was based on this:


    Considering when that was written, the fact that it is well known in the media and the amount of information therein, it is a mystery as to why there has been so little coverage.

  3. Now another follow-up:

    Rivida and Libertas have same telephone number, Directors working on Rivada Contracts, mysterious payments/non-payments...hmmm.

    Incidentilly, this feels like the first real Irish blogger-drivern news story, will be interested where it ends for that reason alone!

  4. I have seen the Indymedia piece before - and the Irish Election piece is interesting.

    But it's no secret about Rivada and Libertas having the same contact details - they are both based in Tuam at Ganley's HQ (home) there. He has a mansion in the town even though he has no Irish business dealings. Rivada does not deal in Ireland although he did bid for Garda business recently (for their new digital communications) and also for the mobile phone licences in the 1990s - the same ones being investigated by the Tribunal.

    Cochrane has been on the staff since last September at least - he was previously a political adviser to Ganley.

  5. http://semper-idem.eu/?cat=47

    Been following this for a few months now.

    There are a lot of odd angles to it, and its good to see things been brought together.

  6. From today's Irish Times:
    Main parties and pro-treaty groups to spend €2.3m on Yes campaign

    Tomorrow: Spending on the No side. (Can't wiat for this!!)

    Funding: the rules

    An individual or group in receipt of a contribution in excess of €126.97 in value in a particular calendar year, for the purposes of campaigning on the Lisbon Treaty referendum, is required to register with the Standards in Public Office Commission as a third party.

    They may not accept a donation or donations from the same person exceeding an aggregate value of €6,348.69 in any one year.

    By March 31st, 2009, these individuals or groups are required to supply a bank statement to the Standards in Public Office Commission.

    They will not be required to disclose who contributed and the bank statement will not be made public.

    Similarly, a registered political party may not accept a donation from the same person in the same calendar year that exceeds €6,348.69 in value.

  7. And now Cóir (of the Youth Defence stable) as well as Libertas have links with this group which has links to far-right parties:

    From Sunday Business Post yesterday:

    "Austrian activists are urging Irish voters to reject the Lisbon Treaty in a letter-writing campaign backed by Declan Ganley’s Libertas.

    An Austrian group which is campaigning against the Lisbon Treaty is supplying names and addresses of Irish voters to activists through its website. It is asking them to write looking for a No vote in the forthcoming Lisbon Treaty referendum.

    Rettet Österreich (Save Austria) has consulted Libertas, the group led by entrepreneur Declan Ganley, on its campaign. Ganley travelled to Vienna a fortnight ago to meet the group and accompanied them to present a petition urging a No vote to the Irish embassy.

    A Libertas spokesman confirmed to "The Sunday Business Post that the group had been consulted by Rettet Österreich, but said there were ‘‘no formal links between the two groups’’. The Austrian group has also produced the ‘‘three monkeys’’ image that has been used by Coir, another anti-Lisbon group."

  8. Love this...what Senator Eugene Regan called the No cmapaign:
    "a holy alliance of Sinn Féin, the CIA and Opus Dei"

  9. It looks like we're never going to know the sources of funding for Libertas:
    From Irish Times OP piece by Colm MCKenna on 19th June 2008:

    "The first and clearest point that has to be made is that under the law as it stands, the public has no right to know (the sources of funding."

    "No donor can give more than €6,348.69 in any one year. All donations received must be lodged to a single dedicated bank account."

    "Libertas does not have to tell the commission anything about who gave it money. Political parties must disclose the identity of any donors who gave more than €5,078.95, but this provision does not apply to third parties in a referendum campaign."

    Someone's just screwed us over and we have no idea who it is...

  10. What kind of democratic and legal organisation is EU ? But UN, ICAO, Eurocontrol ? You have to know that I was in jail because I declasified the documents of my page www.myspace.com/val2002. Since last 4 years I have no job, political police & military intelligence of Romania pick me up regulary at rude interogatory.

    The structure of story of my page :

    Romanian institution and legislation
    1-st chapter
    Authorities of Romania implicated in genocide
    Romanian connexions of arms smuggling ( documents wich prove that ).
    2-nd chapter
    Private military european companies- mercenary of globalization. Documents wich prove the illegal deal of weapons and network.
    3-rd chapter
    A few cinical covered operations of Romanian arms smuggling documentated by proves by me, during the civil war in Darfur- Sudan. Consequences : a humanitarian disaster. 70.000 people died of famine next six month. My interpelation in Romanian Parliament to minister of Justice and the answer. Sudan was under EU embargo.
    4-th chapter
    Civil war of Sierra Leone, top secret documents wich proves the procedure of supplies both parts in conflict with weapons, by Romanian authorities. Sierra Leone was under UN embargo.
    5-th chapter
    The setting up of Romanian government for hide a smuggling arms failure. Here you can see what`s happen with me during last 10 years and how I am fighting with the system. I thing that is important and many personalities show to the people the name of the “dark forces”. But is important to know the underground actions and how can blocked it. Best regards,

    Valentin Vasilescu
    http://www. cdep. ro/pls/parlam/structura. mp?idm=315&cam=2&leg=2000&pag=0&idl=2