A Galway seaside town was the first place in Ireland where businesses collectively boycotted all Israeli goods. Retailers, cafés, restaurants, pharmacies in Kinvara to operate a total boycott of Israeli goods in protest against the Israeli war crimes committed in Gaza.
According to Irish Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Kinvara was the first town in Ireland, to take collective action.
"We salute and congratulate the people of Kinvara for taking this stand for justice for Palestinians. We hope other towns and villages around the country will take a similar stand," said Kevin Squires, co-ordinator of the IPSC. He described boycotting Israeli products as "an effective and peaceful way to bring pressure to bear on the Israeli state to end its occupation of Palestine, and persistent violations of International law."
Vicky Donnelly one of the people behind the Israeli boycott in Kinvara, along with John Griffin and Frank Naughton approached business people in the town and they announced that they had received full support for the action from everyone they contacted.
"We were ashamed when Ireland abstained from UN's Human Rights committee's vote to investigate the Israeli army's actions in Gaza, and ashamed that the Irish government has not applied stronger diplomatic pressure to help end the slaughter of children, women and men, but we're proud that Kinvara has chosen to support this international campaign," Vicky said. Seádhna Tobin owns a pharmacy in the town which sold Israeli cosmetic products. Mr Tobin said he "has no hesitation destocking it as an act of protest".
"We are also looking at the origins of the medicines we are buying because we often have choices between companies. If we identify a particular line that has origins in the State of Israel we will look at de-stocking it and finding an alternative. This is not a clear cut process because often companies own companies but we are looking at the initial origins of our pharmaceuticals," he added.
"To me I am incensed at the pulverising of the Gaza strip and its people. Would the bombarding of Dublin be acceptable to the civilised world in the same way as the bombarding of Gaza and its people can be seen to be accepted by the EU and the United States at the moment?" he asked.Mr Naughton said the response of the community in Kinvara as "heartening".
"On our own we can feel helpless. We all feel the need to do something, rather than watching the television, feeling angry. These actions all contribute to change, and I'd like to thank the people of Kinvara for their support for a peaceful resolution for all parties," he said.
The same unanimous solidarity for Gaza can be expressed across Ireland and across the world. Its the peaceful way to beat the Zionist with solidarity ! Let's do it now, we need your help ! We can do it !
The word boycott entered the English language during the Irish "Land War" and is eponymously derived from the name of Captain Charles Boycott, the land agent of an absentee landlord, Lord Erne, who lived in Lough Mask House, near Ballinrobe in County Mayo, Ireland, who was subject to social ostracism organized by the Irish Land League in 1880. As harvests had been poor that year, Lord Erne offered his tenants a ten percent reduction in their rents. In September of that year, protesting tenants demanded a twenty five percent reduction, which Lord Erne refused. Boycott then attempted to evict eleven tenants from the land. Charles Stewart Parnell, in a speech in Ennis prior to the events in Lough Mask, proposed that when dealing with tenants who take farms where another tenant was evicted, rather than resorting to violence, everyone in the locality should shun them. While Parnell's speech did not refer to land agents or landlords, the tactic was first applied to Boycott when the alarm was raised about the evictions. Despite the short-term economic hardship to those undertaking this action, Boycott soon found himself isolated — his workers stopped work in the fields and stables, as well as in his house. Local businessmen stopped trading with him, and the local postman refused to deliver mail.
The concerted action taken against him meant that Boycott was unable to hire anyone to harvest the crops in his charge. Eventually 50 Orangemen from Cavan and Monaghanvolunteered to do the work. They were escorted to and from Claremorris by one thousandpolicemen and soldiers, despite the fact that the local Land League leaders had said that there would be no violence from them, and in fact no violence materialized.This protection ended up costing far more than the harvest was worth. After the harvest, the "boycott" was successfully continued. Within weeks Boycott's name was everywhere. The New York Tribune reporter, James Redpath, first wrote of the boycott in the international press. The Irish author, George Moore, reported: 'Like a comet the verb 'boycott' appeared.' It was used by The Times in November 1880 as a term for organized isolation. According to an account in the book “The Fall of Feudalism in Ireland” by Michael Davitt, the term was promoted by Fr. John O'Malley of County Mayo to "signify ostracism applied to a landlord or agent like Boycott". The Times first reported on November 20, 1880: “The people of New Pallas have resolved to 'boycott' them and refused to supply them with food or drink.” The Daily News wrote on December 13, 1880: “Already the stoutest-hearted are yielding on every side to the dread of being 'Boycotted'.”