THE businessman chief of Libertas, an organization campaigning for a No vote in the Lisbon Treaty referendum, reacted angrily this week to a claim that his company, Rivada Networks, has war-related contracts with the U.S. military through its parent company in Delaware.Galway-based multi-millionaire Declan Ganley rejected the claim as outrageous."We supply emergency disaster response communications systems. I invite anybody to visit our website www.rivada.com to see what it is we do," he said."Trying to somehow suggest we have some kind of contracts with the military for wars and stuff like that is absolutely ridiculous."Let me be very clear. Rivada Networks is a public safety communications company. We have a contract with the U.S. Northern Command which is a branch of the U.S. military and the National Guard bureau in their role in public safety disaster response."Five of the seven members of the Libertas Institute are employees of Rivada Networks.But Libertas spokesman John McGurk said the organization had "absolutely not" received any funding from Rivada. He said Libertas had to date spent approximately $470,000 and was being financed by donations from supporters.The Irish Times reported that Rivada Networks LLC in Delaware provides communications technology to the U.S. military's Northern Command as well as to the National Guard in 16 states, and three U.S. federal bureaus.Ganley set up Libertas, of which he is chairman, mainly to campaign against the Lisbon Treaty which, if ratified, will change the way the EU is governed."Nobody in Libertas would argue that the European Union hasn't been successful. It's been hugely successful," Ganley said."If you are seriously pro-European, you cannot accept this treaty because it is a huge backward step for Europe and an even more backward step for Ireland."He said the treaty is bad for business as it hands foreign direct investment policy over to the EU, relegates the role of competition and provides a "back door" to increased taxation powers.
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