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Opinion | Biden loves Ireland, but Ireland doesn’t love him.

Ireland is an outlier in Europe on this issue. January poll71% of Irish respondents said they believed Palestinians were living under Israeli apartheid; another poll In February, 79% said they believed Israel was committing genocide.In comparison, no more than 27% People in seven Western European countries said they sympathized more with Palestinians than with Israelis. In Britain’s first colony – a place that lost its status in the War of Independence – sympathy for the Palestinians runs deep, stemming from a shared historical experience.

That feeling has sparked an extraordinary wave of pro-Palestinian action in Ireland since the war began. The series of protests — countless concerts, fundraisers and demonstrations calling for a ceasefire and an end to the bombing of Gaza — goes well beyond any fringe issue. Protests in Ireland have been large-scale and spread across the country, with participants ranging in age, class, race and political affiliation. They brought together trade unionists, Gaelic footballers, journalists, ordinary people, politicians, healthcare workers, LGBTQ people and more. This is a truly national phenomenon.

Across the world, the slogans at pro-Palestinian demonstrations are very similar. But over the winter, a particular slogan took hold on the streets of Ireland. Although St. Patrick’s Day is still months away, protesters focused on the annual meeting between the Taoiseach and the US President in Washington. Every year on March 17, the Irish leader presents a bowl of shamrocks to the President of the United States in the Oval Office. Given this heritage, the slogan is bracingly simple: “No shamrocks for Genocidal Joe.”

It caught on and became an audible centerpiece of protests across the country, particularly during Saturday’s largest demonstration in Dublin city centre. a mural In Belfast, the Palestinian flag has long been flown in nationalist neighborhoods; it has been spray-painted on tram tracks in Dublin; and it has taken center stage on social media with black shamrocks painted on the palms of people’s hands. Prime Minister Leo Varadkar is boycotting a White House visit this year.

With the demand, Mr Biden became the focus of anger in Ireland.During the protests, he was rebuked by public figures, especially Bernadette Devlin McAliskeyHero of the civil rights movement in northern Ireland in the 1960s. In the media, commentators lined up to make comments about the President of the United States; including famous novelists Sally Rooney, He described the attack on Gaza as “Biden’s war”. This criticism is sometimes very intimate.In County Louth, Mr Biden’s great-grandfather’s James Finnigan After the birth, a crowd gathered at the cemetery to denounce the president for betraying his roots.

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