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August 9th 2006

U.S. foreign policy has destroyed world order

The middle-east is in turmoil. The over-reaction of Israeli forces in Lebanon and Gaza is the immediate cause - but the instigator of all unrest in the region is my old friend - George W Bush. The Yanks, aided by the Brits, have wrecked Iraq - and the ensuing unrest in enveloping the rest of that region.
No conflict in the middle-east can take place in isolation. The so-called terrorist culture, nurtured in the absence of law and order in Iraq, is now spreading and causing huge problems in countries that were struggling to rebuild their economies after years of conflict.
The warlords in the U.S. administration have set in train a tragic sequence of events that could take generations to sort out - if ever. The United States is now bogged down and Washington has almost totally lost its leverage in Arab capitals. Its policy of democratization in the region is in tatters, with Islamists sweeping the ballot in places where elections have been held.
The whole world opposed the Yankee invasion of Iraq, but that mattered not a whit to old Georgie and his henchmen. They lied to justify their rape of a sovereign country, they lied about Guantanamo Bay, they lied about rendition, they lied about torture - they lied so often that nobody any longer believes anything they say.
And now the ramifications of Dubya’s brave adventure are spreading. The middle-east, led by the Hamas and Hezboliah factions (both with democratically elected parties behind them), is erupting. Unilateral policies have shattered the region, but the US seems to have no plan B. Israel will crush its neighbour - its army is the most effective fighting machine in the world. But while it destroys the infrastructure of Lebanon and murders and maims its people, it cannot kill the spirit.
George Bush can talk all he wants of Israel having the right to defend itself, but the sense of injustice felt by the Arab world runs far deeper than the rights and wrongs of a particular situation. The most worrying aspect of the Bush and Blair alliance is their failure to understand the soul, hierarchical structure, and pride of the Arab people. Had the United States been sensitive to these from the outset, things today might be different.
The deteriorating situation in the middle-east stems from the unlawful invasion of Iraq and the jettisoning of the traditional US role in international affairs.
The war in Iraq has undermined American credibility around the world. It has become partisan and deaf to Arab views. Reckless U.S. policy has put the whole world in danger.

Corrie Star visits the Magee shop - Johnny Briggs meets Emma Mundy and Jennifer Thompson
when he called into Donegal’s premier fashion store. Pic: Barbara McGroary

Kellys Unveil Plans for Miller’s Hill
Cinema, retail, apartments, multi-storey car park and
25,000 sq ft anchor store included in proposal

In a planning application due to be published soon, Michael Kelly will apply for permission to construct a mixed-use development on his five acre site at Miller’s Hill. This will be the culmination of a year’s planning that saw architects, surveyors, consultants, planners, engineers and, of course, accountants, assess the potential of the location - and how best it could be utilized.
The Kellys caused a major surprise when, at an auction in the Millpark Hotel on 13th July 2005, they purchased a three acre site on Miller’s Hill placed on the market by Donegal County Council. Situated plumb in the town centre, bordered by the Diamond/Main Street carpark and the buyers own land, the price of €4.2 million took the property market by surprise.
Twelve months on, the Glebe builders have their plans in place - and ambitious they are in scale and diversity. If granted, the project will cause a seachange in the Donegal we know – creating a second town centre sitting adjacent to the existing one.
The planning applied for will seek the demolition of existing building and wall at Quay Street along with excavation and removal of existing sloping ground, making a site for the construction of a mixed use complex with frontage onto Quay Street and the existing public car park, accommodating circa 7345m2 nett retail space at ground and first floor levels, a multi-screen cinema complex (5 screens) a multi-storey car park (6 levels) accessed from existing public link road with capacity for 540 cars, one 340m2 office suite, a total of 53 apartments, with a proposed new roadway from Quay Street accessing the following a. the residential accommodation, b. a delivery bay for the retail accommodation at high level, c. ESB substation and other plant and equipment associated with the overall development d. a second entrance/exit to the multi-storey car park at high level and e. a smaller surface car park (22 spaces) with second smaller delivery bay to service the residential & retail accommodation along the Quay Street frontage. 38 of the proposed apartments located above the main retail area fronting on to the existing public car park and accessed from the proposed new road to the rear, are arranged on three levels above the two levels of retail below. The remaining 15 apartments are arranged on three levels over the ground floor retail space fronting onto Quay Street. The proposed office suite is accessed from the 22 space surface car-park to the rear of the Quay Street Block. A common mall space stretching from Quay Street to the proposed multi-storey car park will have main pedestrian entrances at Quay Street and from the existing public car park and will provide access to the ground and first floor retail accommodation as well as the multi-screen cinema complex.
Contained in the retail space is a 25,000 sq ft anchor store for which Mr Kelly says he has received many expressions of interest from national multiples.

Certainly this is one of the most important developments to go to planning from our area – which, if granted, will determine the future shape and direction of Donegal Town. We wish the Kellys, father and son, every success in this ambitious venture – a big step for them and a seminal move forward for the town. While the developers were reluctant to give Donegal Times visuals of the project until planners had seen them, we believe them to be exciting, innovative and sympathetic to the surrounding environment.

The Donegal Times, The Diamond, Donegal Town, Ireland

Tel: +353-74-9722860 Fax: +353-74-9722937


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