Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Hiroshima Day:
Trump’s withdrawal from
nuclear treaty condemned

This two-column news report is published in The Irish Times today [7 August 2019], p 6:

Hiroshima Day:
Trump’s withdrawal from
nuclear treaty condemned


US president Donald Trump’s “passive encouragement of violence is insidious and is eating away at the fabric of decency throughout the world,” the annual Hiroshima Day commemoration in Dublin was told yesterday.

“What is the likelihood of Trump initiating a nuclear strike? He has withdrawn from a key bilateral nuclear weapons treaty with Russia, he has pulled out of the Iranian nuclear deal, he has announced he will increase the US nuclear arsenal.

“Yet more Americans have been killed this weekend than have been injured or jailed in Iran all this year… for many years,” said Canon Patrick Comerford, President of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).

The Dublin commemoration marks the 74th anniversary of the dropping of the world’s first atomic bomb by the US on Japan’s Hiroshima on August 6th 1945.

Pictured at the commemoration were anti-war protesters Tarak Kauffm retired from the US army and (right)Ken Mayers, a retired US marine. Other attendees were Kenichiro Sasame, deputy head of mission at the Japanese Embassy and Lord Mayor of Dublin Paul McAuliffe.

There is a fuller report and an additional photograph on The Irish Times website:

Hiroshima Day: Trump’s boosting of nuclear arsenal condemned

Dublin commemoration hears criticism of US president’s ‘passive encouragement of violence’

Patsy McGarry

Pictured at the Irish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament’s annual Hiroshima Day commemoration at Merrion Square, Dublin were anti-war protesters and retired US servicemen Tarak Kauff and Ken Mayers. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw/ The Irish Times

US President Donald Trump’s “passive encouragement of violence is insidious and is eating away at the fabric of decency throughout the world,” the annual Hiroshima Day commemoration in Dublin was told on Tuesday afternoon.

“What is the likelihood of Trump initiating a nuclear strike? He has withdrawn from a key bilateral nuclear weapons treaty with Russia, he has pulled out of the Iranian nuclear deal, he has announced he will increase the US nuclear arsenal.

“Yet more Americans have been killed this weekend than have been injured or jailed in Iran all this year… for many years,” said Canon Patrick Comerford, President of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).

There had been 246 mass shootings in the US so far this year, he said. “More weapons of mass destruction have been used in America this year than ever provided the excuses for the war in Iraq. And still Trump laughs and jokes at a rally when someone suggests shooting immigrants,” he said.

Pictured at the Irish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament’s annual Hiroshima Day commemoration at Merrion Square, Dublin were Kenichiro Sasame, deputy head of mission at the Japanese Embassy, Ireland; Canon Patrick Comerford, president, Irish CND and Lord Mayor of Dublin Paul McAuliffe. Photograph Nick Bradshaw/The Irish Times

The Dublin commemoration marks the 74th anniversary of the dropping of the world’s first atomic bomb by the US on Japan’s Hiroshima on August 6th 1945.

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, designed to prevent the spread of nuclear arms, “seems to be in meltdown. The preparatory meeting in May for the treaty review conference next year [2020] failed to produce any concrete outcomes,” Canon Comerford said.

“As long as there are nuclear weapons in the world, and as long as world leaders threaten to use them, we must continue to remember the victims of Hiroshima, for they are a reminder of the consequences we all face if we fail not only to control nuclear weapons, but to abolish them completely.

“We cannot trust the people who are in charge of the world’s stockpiles of nuclear weapons. Consider the on-again, off-again nuclear talks between president Trump and chairman Kim (of North Korea),” he said, while “the five permanent members of the UN Security Council are all in possession of nuclear stockpiles: the US, Russia, China, Britain and France”.
He said that” having let Trump know that he was not welcome in Ireland a few months ago, we must now organise to make sure Pence knows he is not welcome either.”
The US vice president Mike Pence is to visit Ireland next month. “Trump and Pence must know that they have no friends here, that they can expect no passive acceptance.”

Last year, Mr Trump said the US would outspend any other country in building up its nuclear arsenal in what was perceived as a direct challenge to Russia and China.

“We have more money than anybody else, by far. We’ll build it up,” Mr Trump said after being asked late on Monday if he was prepared to build up the US’s nuclear arsenal.

Other attendees at the commemoration were Kenichiro Sasame, deputy head of mission at the Japanese Embassy and Lord Mayor of Dublin Paul McAuliffe.

Former RIC barracks
remains a striking
presence in Pallasgreen

The former Royal Irish Constabulary barracks is a striking building in Pallasgreen, Co Limerick (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2019)

Patrick Comerford

Pallasgreen in East Co Limerick has pretty, traditional thatched pubs, an unusual bicycle museum with a themed cafĂ©, the crumbling ruins of a mediaeval tower house and castle, and hidden churches – all enough to invited tourists and travellers to take a break on the main road between Limerick and Waterford.

But during my visit over the bank holiday weekend, I found the former police barracks was also a striking building in Pallasgreen.

This former Royal Irish Constabulary barracks is a two-storey block with a cellar and a three-storey tower with a pyramid roof. It was designed by the Dublin-born architect Robert John Stirling (1841-1915) and built in 1874 by the contractor Patrick Kenna.

This impressive substantial barracks incorporates architectural features that are characteristic of the late Victorian period, including the projecting block, porch and fine rendered detailing.

Despite its unconventional form, the building is well proportioned. Although it is now disused, the barracks retains most of its original form and massing, as well as much of the original fabric.

The former RIC barracks is one of three built to similar designs in this area (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2019)

This is one of three police barracks built to similar designs in this locality. The other two are in Bruff and Tipperary town.

Although the barracks is now vacant, the high quality of its design, and its scale and height make it a striking building.

The architectural features in this former barracks include the gable-fronted porch at the front, the two-bay three-storey over basement block, the camber-headed opening in the porch with render block-and-start surrounds, and the flight of limestone steps at the entrance with rendered balustrades and limestone copings.

The RIC barracks in Pallasgreen was designed by Robert John Stirling (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2019)

The barracks was designed by the Dublin-born architect Robert John Stirling (1841-1915). Both his father, John Stirling, and his brother, William Stirling, were architects too, and Robert Stirling received his architectural training from his father, and joined the staff of the Board of Works as a draughtsman in 1860.

Stirling remained with the Board of Works for 24 years. From the late 1870s on, he was a land improvement inspector, but also worked briefly in private practice as a land surveyor and valuer with James Hargrave Bridgford in Bridgford & Stirling in the 1870s.

He set up his own private practice in 1884 and was a surveyor with the Civil Service Building Society until 1893. Later, he was an architect with the Dublin estates of Trinity College Dublin, designing the Pathology Building or Parsons Building, extending Nos 22 to 26 at the Rubrics, and rebuilding New Square.

Sitrling’s other works include Saint Victor’s (now Saint Catherine’s Church) on Donore Avenue, Dublin.

The barracks has been vacant for many years, but remains a striking building (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2019)