" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)



IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - we made it to the finalists page last year but never got to the stage :- ( 'cause not enough of ye feckers out there voted for us! So we're gonna give ya a second chance - the blog awards this year will be held on Thursday, October 5th (2017) in The Academy, Middle Abbey Street, in Dublin city centre, and we would appreciate if you could keep an eye here and give us a vote when ya can. Or else we'll get our 'Junior' to put up a pay wall and then ye will be sorry...!


Wednesday, December 26, 2007

CABHAIR CHRISTMAS SWIM , DECEMBER 25th 2007 .

The 2007 CABHAIR swim in the Grand Canal in Inchicore, Dublin, was - true to form - the success that this 31-years-young event is now known for! There were seven swimmers , approximately 100 on-lookers and the by-now usual contingent of Special Branch 'minders' (six or seven of them). The weather was very kind to us - it remained dry , sunny (-ish!) and was not too muddy underfoot.
Tables were laid-on to place the different 'goodies' on for anyone that wanted them - cakes , soft drinks , lollipops , crisps , beer , ale , whiskey etc , a fire was lit in the centre of the crowd and music was supplied via the CD 'The Songs That Shake The Barley' .
The only 'disappointment' of the day was the fact that an RTE film crew never showed , having rang one of the CABHAIR organisers at 10.36am that morning to confirm the venue and declare that they were on their way to film the proceedings. Maybe next year we should film it ourselves and drop them in a copy...
Five photographs of the swim are published with this post , with another five to be found here and a further five can be seen here.

CABHAIR 'Nollaig Shona' banner and Tricolour.

"Lemme out...!"

Crowd control at the 'Swim Shop'!

All shades out for CABHAIR!

From Lapland and elsewhere at the Swim!

We are - again! - taking a few days rest before our next post . Slán go fóill anois!
Sharon.






Saturday, December 22, 2007

UP THE REPUBLIC - OUR DAY WILL COME !

NOLLAIG SHONA DAR LEITHEOIRI !

Ar eagle an dearmaid ....

Ba bhrea an rud e siochain bhuan bunaithe ar an gceart a bheith againn in Eireann . Is i an bronntanas is fearr a d'fheadfaimis a thabhairt duinn fein agus dar gclann .

Coinniodh an ceart agus an tsiochain uainn le breis agus ocht gcead bliain , de bharr ionradh , forghabhail agus miriaradh na Sasanach . Socru ar bith a dheantar in ainm mhuintir na hEireann agus a ghlacann le riail Shasana agus a dhaingnionn an chriochdheighilt , ni thig leis an ceart na an tsiochain bhuann a bhunu .

Ni dheanfaidh se ach la na siochana buaine a chur ar an mhear fhada agus an bhunfhadb a thabhairt do ghluin eile . Tharla se seo cheana nuair a siniodh Conradh 1921 agus cuireadh siar ar mhuintir na hEireann e in ainm na siochana . Is mor ag Sinn Fein Poblachtach Eire a bheith saor agus daonlathach , an cuspoir ceanna a bhi i gceist ag Wolfe Tone agus ag na Poblachtaigh uile anuas go dti 1916 agus an la ata inniu ann .

Rinne a lan fear agus ban croga iobairti mora , thug a mbeatha fiu , ar son na cuise uaisle seo .

CEART . SAOIRSE. DAONLATHAS .



A PEACEFUL CHRISTMAS TO OUR READERS !

Least we forget ....

A just and permanent peace in Ireland is most desirable . It is the greatest gift we could give to ourselves and our children . We have been denied justice and peace for more than eight centuries , because of English invasion , occupation and misrule of our country .

Any arrangement which , in the name of the Irish people , accepts English rule and copperfastens the Border , will not bring justice and lasting peace . It will only postpone the day of permanent peace , handing over the basic problem to another generation .

This happened before when the Treaty of 1921 was signed and was forced on the Irish people in the name of peace . Republican Sinn Fein cherishes the objective of a free , democratic Ireland , as envisaged by Wolfe Tone and all Republicans down to 1916 and our own day . Many brave men and women sacrificed a lot , even their lives , for this noble Cause .

JUSTICE . FREEDOM . DEMOCRACY .

(From the '1169...' Crew , December 2007. PLEASE NOTE : we are on a short break from normal posting , although we will post details of how the CABHAIR swim went and possibly a few other similar-type posts. We will return to 'normal' early in the New Year. Go raibh maith agat! Sharon.)






Friday, December 21, 2007

THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY - PROPPING-UP THE ORANGE STATE.......

At a press briefing on May 3rd, 1983, Bishop Cathal Daly declared that a vote for Sinn Fein was 'a wasted vote' , and that people should think seriously before risking being seen as 'supporting violence' . As polling day approached , the rising crescendo of calls from Bishop Daly and other members of the Catholic hierarchy became increasingly explicit in their support for the SDLP. Against the background of this intervention into the arena of nationalist party politics , Patricia Collins sketches the role played by the leadership of the Catholic Church over the past fourteen years against nationalist resistance .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

The role of the Catholic hierarchy in not only failing to support , but consciously undermining , the republican hunger-strikes of 1980 and 1981 against attempted criminalisation by Westminster , and finally being instrumental in their collapse , has been well documented . It was a crucial period in time in the relationship between the Catholic church and the nationalist people . The lesson of the Church's role was not lost on the republican prisoners, who described Fr Denis Faul, the Catholic chaplain in the H-Blocks, as "...a conniving , treacherous man.." and the role of the Catholic hierarchy throughout the hunger-strikes as "...misleading and immoral..".

Nor was the lesson lost on the tens of thousands who had supported the republican prisoners : when the time had come to confront the British government , the Catholic hierarchy had backed down and asked the dying prisoners to abandon their fight instead . They then turned to the heartbroken families and distilled the poison of defeat in them . To that hierarchy , anything was better than destabilising the 'State' .

Never since 1969 had the hierarchy found it so difficult to steer a course between the 'twin dangers' of supporting the so-called 'men of violence' and risking alienating its flock . The hunger-strike was the watershed : martyrdom had to belong exclusively to the Church , it could not be 'allowed' to 'fall' to the IRA , and the hierarchy was prepared to lose some of its followers for the sake of this stand , but it was confident that it would win them back later on.......
(MORE LATER).



THE POLITICS OF REPRESSION .......

Repression is not just bullets and the kick on the door at dawn. Repression is an integrated imperialist policy to deal with a risen people which encompasses all facets of social and political life.
From 'IRIS' magazine , July/August 1982.

The British were hoping that war weariness could succeed in demoralising the nationalist resistance , the spearhead of which -the IRA- was dubbed a 'criminal' element (the'godfathers') * to be dealt with through a concerted intelligence/military campaign in a renewed effort to isolate it from its nationalist base of support . ('1169...' Comment*: it is now the Provisional organisation [the then 'criminal godfathers' etc] which seeks to dismiss those they refer to today as 'dissidents' as "criminal godfathers" ! The 'worm' [snake?] has truly turned...)

To remove the colonial war stigma , British troops were to gradually withdraw leaving local troops - UDR and RUC - in the frontline . This was known as 'Ulsterisation' in an analogy with the 'Vietnamisation' practised earlier by the American government .

To ensure that life would return to 'normal' in the nationalist ghettos once the 'criminal' elements were removed , the British government made an effort to improve economic conditions - a few factories were set up in nationalist areas , but the international recession of 1975 and after meant that investment was minimal . The last 'white elephant' from this policy - the De Lorean motor company in Belfast - has recently closed down . Houses were built but with over 50 per cent unemployment in nationalist areas most people cannot afford the rent , and increasingly the 'impartial' Housing Executive has been exposed as a tool of British counter-insurgency strategy . Huge 'leisure centres' were built so that the people could while away their time playing squash and swimming - and hopefully forgetting about the war . Social services were modernised and community groups encouraged.......
(MORE LATER).





REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

The British government , encouraged by the silence of the Irish establishment , extended their harassment to two funerals which , at the request of relatives , were to be private , that of Tony Gough in Derry in February 1986 and of Belfastman Jim McKernan, both of whom had been shot dead on active service by British crown forces . When Jim McKernan's funeral began on September 16th , 1986 , Andersonstown was again saturated with hundreds of British forces , including scores of jeeps . The start of the funeral was delayed for 30 minutes while Jim McKernan's white-faced widow appealed to the RUC to pull back , assuring them there would be no Irish Republican Guard of Honour . But the RUC ignored her and took no notice of her repeated request .

The mourners , who numbered more than a thousand , were aggressively hemmed-in by RUC Land Rovers and , outside the wake house , RUC men on the roofs of other Land Rovers aimed their weapons at the crowd , and armed RUC thugs also walked along-side the hearse . In Milltown Cemetery, according to the 'Irish News' report - " (British) soldiers took up positions behind gravestones and the RUC refused to allow anyone other than their own armed members to walk alongside the hearse from the cemetery gates to the Republican Plot.. "

Events at these two private funerals were an unspoken admission that the British authorities' target was not simply the symbols of the struggle for national freedom - IRA Firing Parties , berets , gloves or Tricolours - their broader aim was to repress the risen nationalist people into submission and to intimidate all public displays of support for those engaged in the armed struggle. However , on that same day - September 16th , 1986 - another funeral was also being held in Belfast : that of a UVF man . The RUC behaved in a very respectable manner at that event.......
(MORE LATER).

(PLEASE NOTE : we will be taking a short break from normal posting over the Christmas period - today , Friday 21st December , will be the last day this year that we will do one of our 'usual' posts , although we will post details of how the CABHAIR swim went and possibly a few other similar-type posts. We will return to 'normal' early in the New Year. Go raibh maith agat! Sharon.)






Thursday, December 20, 2007

WHERE DOES THE TIME GO....?

On A Walk Through Rebel Dublin with the Patriot and Heroine Anne Devlin and Charles Stewart Parnell ,
Charlie Kerins , Charlotte Despard, and Che Guevara , we talked ,with A Servant of the Queen , about A Compact History of Ireland .

It was a Courious Journey, this Oral History of Ireland’s Unfinished Revolution and many of the Milestones in Irish History were discussed , as we passed through Dublin Tenement Life . We had No Faith in the System , so we agreed on a Secret Map of Ireland but promised that , despite the Partition of Ireland and all of the ensuing Raids and Rallies , we would not strive for same On Another Man’s Wound....
.....see what else is available here!
Finally - in answer to the question asked at the top of this post -
keep an account of next years time with one of these -
(Front[right] and back of the RSF 2008 Calendar)
- a 2008 Republican calendar,available from here for a fiver (Euro or Sterling) !
Calendars, books, pamphlets, CD's, tapes, T-Shirts etc - all of a Republican 'flavour' - make great 'stocking fillers' and , indeed , make great presents all year round. Visit the Dublin shop at 223 Parnell Street ('phone 01-8729747) or the Belfast shop at 229 Falls Road ('phone 90319004) to make your choice .
Thanks !
Sharon.






Wednesday, December 19, 2007

THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY - PROPPING-UP THE ORANGE STATE........

At a press briefing on May 3rd, 1983, Bishop Cathal Daly declared that a vote for Sinn Fein was 'a wasted vote' , and that people should think seriously before risking being seen as 'supporting violence' . As polling day approached , the rising crescendo of calls from Bishop Daly and other members of the Catholic hierarchy became increasingly explicit in their support for the SDLP. Against the background of this intervention into the arena of nationalist party politics , Patricia Collins sketches the role played by the leadership of the Catholic Church over the past fourteen years against nationalist resistance .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

The Catholic hierarchy sought to use the visit of Pope John Paul II to Ireland in 1979 : what was promoted of his Drogheda address , rumoured to have been written for the Pope by Bishop Cahal Daly, is the plea to the IRA to lay down its arms . A muted call to 'responsible leaders' to enforce civil rights was quietly ignored by those same 'responsible leaders' and played down by the media . Video recordings of the Drogheda address were played again and again to Northern Catholic schoolchildren that year , in religious education classes .

Meanwhile , in the Autumn of 1979 , the Catholic hierarchy took part in an RUC-organised seminar on 'community relations' - in essence , how to get the RUC back into nationalist areas. The 'leaked' report of this secret seminar highlighted the hierarchy's continuing preoccupation : " A clergyman called for greater support of the RUC by ordinary people , and in particular for the ostracising of terrorists - this would include the denial of opportunities to achieve propaganda aims through funerals." Significantly , a few months later , all the churches on the Falls Road refused to accept the body of IRA Volunteer Kevin 'Dee' Delaney. Two weeks previously , Catholic clergymen had officiated at the military funeral of a UDR soldier shot by the IRA .

As for the Catholic schools located in 'difficult' areas (ie 'nationalist') , 'unobtrusive steps' would be taken to extend the use of the RUC's ' Youth Liaison Scheme' . It was said , in the course of the seminar , that "...teachers and other professional people could , by expressing tactfully their support of the RUC , facilitate the return to normal 'policing' . " Any youngster will testify to the fact that this was implemented , and that numerous mentions were made during school assemblies of the deaths of UDR and RUC personnel , while plastic bullet victims rarely if ever got an explicit mention.......
(MORE LATER).



THE POLITICS OF REPRESSION .......

Repression is not just bullets and the kick on the door at dawn. Repression is an integrated imperialist policy to deal with a risen people which encompasses all facets of social and political life.
From 'IRIS' magazine , July/August 1982.

British Colonel Robin Evelegh speaks of 'terrorists' but the gist of his argument is that the IRA is the military expression of the resistance of a whole community . Pure repression is seen as counter-productive and the battle should be waged at every level of society . This turn in British strategy materialised around 1975 when the IRA was engaged in an extended truce, which was time used by the British forces to collect vital intelligence on the IRA which was to prove the basis for a subsequent 'criminalisation' drive - jailing of freedom fighters on trumped-up charges but doing so in what they presented as 'due process of law' in order to impress international opinion .

This 'due process' involved the full use of the 'conveyor belt' between the brutal interrogation centres where 'confessions' were extracted or concocted , the Diplock Courts which sat without juries and convicted on the most transparent of 'evidence' , and the H-Blocks and Armagh Prison where 'special category' (ie 'political') status had been withdrawn as the final element in the 'criminalisation' of nationalist resistance - a decision which was to lead to the prisons becoming a vital battleground in the resistance struggle .

Hand in hand with this , the British government was trying to weaken and confuse republican resistance by winding down internment and by vague promises of an eventual declaration of intent to withdraw from the Six Counties : this was the beginning of a sophisticated new policy aimed at 'normalisation' of the occupied territories * , with the British portraying themselves as 'honest brokers between two warring religious factions' ('1169...'* Comment : Westminster now has the new SDLP/Workers Party - Provisional Sinn Fein - to assist them in that portrayal . Lord Adams and Lord McGuinness , amongst others in that vile outfit , will no doubt be further rewarded by the British for helping to 'normalise' the occupation in the Six Counties . The 'flip side' , of course , is that 'The Adams Family' have prolonged the Struggle by their traitorous efforts .).......
(MORE LATER).





REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

At the funerals of Strabane Volunteers Charlie Breslin and brothers Michael and David Devine in February 1985 , mourners followed the coffin in an atmosphere of almost unbearable tension . RUC stormtroopers caused numerous delays , breaking assurances to the family . After the cortege was already underway , the RUC halted it and insisted that Charlie Breslin's beret and gloves be removed and , during the ensuing stressful 45-minute delay , his bereaved father , Joe Breslin , collapsed and had to be carried into a nearby house .

The RUC's show of strength in this case was organised by James Crutchley, the same RUC officer who personally ordered the firing of the plastic bullet which killed Belfast mother-of-three Nora McCabe as she went to buy cigarettes one morning during the 1981 hunger-strike. Since then , RUC officer James Crutchley has been promoted to the position of RUC Assistant Chief Constable .

The determination of mourners was again tested on August 9th 1985 at the funeral of Volunteer Charles English in Derry : more than 4,000 people linked arms and thwarted attempts by the RUC to split the cortege . Under their courageous protection , a four-person uniformed IRA Guard of Honour accompanied Charles English's coffin from his Cable Street home to the city cemetery . The Leinster House administration remained , at all times , silent in relation to the ghoulish activities of the British forces and it was this silence which encouraged Westminster to continue with the vile practice of disrupting Republican funerals.......
(MORE LATER).

(PLEASE NOTE : we will be taking a short break from normal posting over the Christmas period - Friday 21st December will be the last day this year that we will do one of our 'usual' posts , although we will post details of how the CABHAIR swim went and possibly a few other similar-type posts. We will return to 'normal' early in the New Year. Go raibh maith agat! Sharon.)






Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Almost 12 months since it was 'only' thirty years.....

(UPDATE : this swim now has its own 'Jewellery Range'! And , as with all top-class pieces of jewellery , it has a 'history' attached to it...)

It began - properly structured and organised - in 1976 ,as a 'fundraiser with a difference' combined with the need to gain extra publicity for a situation which was then - as now - making world headlines . Those that sat down together in early September 1976 to tighten-up the then 'hit-and-miss' affair were a dedicated team who fully understood that to fail in their business would not only bring derision on them and the issue they sought to highlight , but would give their enemy a publicity coup which they would exploit to the fullest extent . With that in mind , the team persevered - favours were called-in , guarantees were secured , provisions obtained and word dispatched to like-minded individuals in the near-locale . At the appointed time on the agreed day - 12 Noon , Christmas Day 1976 - a soon-to-be 31-years-young event was 'born'.......
The CABHAIR Christmas Day Swim is , thankfully , still going strong and will be , as mentioned , 31-years-young on December 25th next!
Photographs of last years event can be viewed here and , if you can't make it to the actual swim itself , you might consider posting a donation to the following address :
CABHAIR
Irish Republican Prisoners Dependants Fund
223 Parnell Street,
Dublin 1.
Ireland.

Thank You,
Go Raibh Maith Agat,

Sharon.






Monday, December 17, 2007

THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY - PROPPING-UP THE ORANGE STATE........

At a press briefing on May 3rd, 1983, Bishop Cathal Daly declared that a vote for Sinn Fein was 'a wasted vote' , and that people should think seriously before risking being seen as 'supporting violence' . As polling day approached , the rising crescendo of calls from Bishop Daly and other members of the Catholic hierarchy became increasingly explicit in their support for the SDLP. Against the background of this intervention into the arena of nationalist party politics , Patricia Collins sketches the role played by the leadership of the Catholic Church over the past fourteen years against nationalist resistance .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

In 1976 , the Irish Council Of Churches issued a report , in which they stated - " (There should be)...action by the Churches to ensure that their worship is not exploited by paramilitary organisations at funerals and commemorations ." There had however already been 'action' : in December 1975 , the Tricolour-draped coffin of IRA Volunteer Paul 'Basil' Fox had been turned away from St Paul's Church on the Falls Road in Belfast . The same 'action' was not in evidence in other churches when dead UVF and UDA members and , indeed , Catholic RUC and UDR men , were being buried .

1976 saw the rise (and fall) of the 'Peace Movement', which was strongly supported , aided and financed by the British government and the Churches (....like these people, that is..) . The support the emerging 'Peace People' received from the Catholic Hierarchy manifested itself in many ways - permission to use church grounds and premises , direct involvement of nuns , priests and church activists such as those of the Legion of Mary in the organisation of rallies and meetings, and moral support through statements and articles .

When the Peace People's circus crashed , it became clear that the IRA was here to stay (...until British agents within it managed to rise to the position where they attempted to constitutionalise it in 1986 , an act which resulted in the Provisional's military arm eventually morphing into that which it is today : a semi-'official' , semi-military outfit , 'allowed' by the political establishment to run financial scams and carry-out 'internal housekeeping' activity, as long as they no longer challenge 'the system' ) . The Catholic hierarchy looked to other means of helping to 'normalise' the Six Counties (...and found new allies, too..).......
(MORE LATER).




THE POLITICS OF REPRESSION .......

Repression is not just bullets and the kick on the door at dawn. Repression is an integrated imperialist policy to deal with a risen people which encompasses all facets of social and political life.
From 'IRIS' magazine , July/August 1982.

From 1970 (after a brief initial 'honeymoon' period) to 1972 , the British government followed a policy of naked repression on the assumption that the IRA could be defeated by a swift blow which would also separate it from its social support . Thus we had the massive internment of the early years and the now publicly admitted torture of internees, the Falls Road curfew of 1970, and Bloody Sunday in 1972, the latter being a massacre which showed the failure of the policy to 'separate' the IRA 'fish' from the 'water' of the nationalist community by these methods .

Henceforth a judicious blend of repression and 'reform' would be employed , and great effort was made to groom a respectable nationalist political voice- the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) - which could be used by the British in a counter-insurgency context because , bought off from time to time with a few meaningless 'reforms' (like this, for example) it could be portrayed as the legitimate voice of the nationalist people .

The more astute British leaders recognised the need for a more 'rounded' approach to the problem . One military strategist Colonel Robin Eveleigh, in a book entitled 'Peace-Keeping In A Democratic Society : Lessons Of Northern Ireland', (sic) published in 1978 , put it like this - " A campaign against terrorist-backed insurrection is not a military campaign alone : it is possible for the military to repress an area into a sort of calm , but the trouble will burst out again as soon as their pressure is reduced . Such a campaign is not only political or only an economic one . Nor is such a campaign a question of social services , welfare or housing . In a counter-terrorist campaign , the battle runs across every level and every activity of society . Thus the conflict must be seen by Government in terms of co-ordinating the whole social system . " Yes , indeed.......
(MORE LATER).






REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

On the night of December 19th , 1984 , the IRA fired three volleys of shots over the coffin of Seán McIlvenna, who had been killed on Active Service in Armagh . Yet the following day's funeral was the occasion for one of the largest RUC operations ever seen in West Belfast ; an RUC force estimated at nearly 1,000 lined the funeral route and saturated Milltown Cemetery and nearby nationalist areas , and about 30 RUC Land Rovers intruded inside the cemetery , with many more outside .

In an atmosphere of high tension , mourners had to link arms to protect Seán McIlvenna's coffin , which was draped with a Tricolour and bore a single red rose , placed there by his widow , Patricia . For over thirty minutes the funeral had to be halted after RUC Land Rovers attempted to split the cortege .

The end of the grief-filled month for republicans of December in 1984 saw the funeral , on December 23rd , of young Derry IRA Volunteer Ciaran Fleming - and the most gratuitously violent RUC attack of the year on any funeral . Many of the RUC had come in full riot gear of helmet , shield and body armour , to show that they were intent on violent disruption . Several times during a tense and exhausting funeral which lasted three full hours , the RUC baton-charged the mourners , which encouraged near-by children , standing on a wall , to throw stones at them in reprisal : the RUC then fired at least four plastic bullets into the funeral cortege , seriously injuring two people . During the afternoon , numerous mourners suffered bloody head wounds and one man was knocked unconscious by the RUC . Stewards were often forced to halt the proceedings because of this harassment but , despite the RUC's terror , the people stood firm and , in a twilight Bogside, three uniformed IRA Volunteers stepped out of the crowd and paid the IRA's traditional salute to their fallen comrade , as a forest of arms were raised in clenched-fist salute . Finally , thanks to the courage of thousands of nationalists , Volunteer Ciaran Fleming was laid to rest . By now , it was pitch black.......
(MORE LATER).







Saturday, December 15, 2007


Almost 12 months since it was 'only' thirty years.....

(UPDATE : this swim now has its own 'Jewellery Range'! And , as with all top-class pieces of jewellery , it has a 'history' attached to it...)

It began - properly structured and organised - in 1976 ,as a 'fundraiser with a difference' combined with the need to gain extra publicity for a situation which was then - as now - making world headlines . Those that sat down together in early September 1976 to tighten-up the then 'hit-and-miss' affair were a dedicated team who fully understood that to fail in their business would not only bring derision on them and the issue they sought to highlight , but would give their enemy a publicity coup which they would exploit to the fullest extent . With that in mind , the team persevered - favours were called-in , guarantees were secured , provisions obtained and word dispatched to like-minded individuals in the near-locale . At the appointed time on the agreed day - 12 Noon , Christmas Day 1976 - a soon-to-be 31-years-young event was 'born'.......
The CABHAIR Christmas Day Swim is , thankfully , still going strong and will be , as mentioned , 31-years-young on December 25th next!
Photographs of last years event can be viewed here and , if you can't make it to the actual swim itself , you might consider posting a donation to the following address :
CABHAIR
Irish Republican Prisoners Dependants Fund
223 Parnell Street,
Dublin 1.
Ireland.

Thank You,
Go Raibh Maith Agat,

Sharon.






Friday, December 14, 2007

THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY - PROPPING-UP THE ORANGE STATE........

At a press briefing on May 3rd, 1983, Bishop Cathal Daly declared that a vote for Sinn Fein was 'a wasted vote' , and that people should think seriously before risking being seen as 'supporting violence' . As polling day approached , the rising crescendo of calls from Bishop Daly and other members of the Catholic hierarchy became increasingly explicit in their support for the SDLP. Against the background of this intervention into the arena of nationalist party politics , Patricia Collins sketches the role played by the leadership of the Catholic Church over the past fourteen years against nationalist resistance .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

Against the political upheavals of the late 1960's and 1970's , the Catholic hierarchy was often left confused : some priests who spoke out against internment in 1971 were swiftly moved to remote country parishes , yet in the aftermath of Bloody Sunday dozens of clergymen flocked to Derry to be among the mourning crowds .

Bishop William Philbin rarely made any statements on the political crisis , despite the trauma of events for nationalists , except to unilaterally condemn IRA actions . In September 1969 he had asked Belfast nationalists to pull down the barricades and they followed him , but after 1969 he repeatedly urged his flock to 'stop supporting violence' , but this time with little success . However , while Bishop Philbin was consistent in his unashamedly pro-British stance , other clergymen tried the subtle approach : in 1976 , a team from the Irish Council Of Churches, chaired by Dr Cahal Daly (then Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnoise) , published a report entitled 'Violence In Ireland' in which that word is defined thus - " It is essential to distinguish between the lawful use of force and the unlawful use of force , which is violence."

The State , argued Daly's report , "...has the right to use such force as is necessary to restrain wrong-doers , for anyone else to use force is unlawful and therefore constitutes 'violence' . There is no justification in the present situation in Ireland * for the existence of any paramilitary organisations . The Churches jointly remind their members that they have a prima facie moral obligation to support the currently-constituted authorities in Ireland against all paramilitary powers . " ('1169...' Comment : *throughout our on-going centuries-long struggle for full independence , the 'establishment' [whether represented by collar , suit or uniform] has never failed to fall back on the imperialist mantra that 'there is no justification for using violence against the State...' : as similarly-oppressed people the world over will confirm , the mere presence of an agressive , corrupt imperial power is justification enough.)
(MORE LATER).



THE POLITICS OF REPRESSION .......

Repression is not just bullets and the kick on the door at dawn. Repression is an integrated imperialist policy to deal with a risen people which encompasses all facets of social and political life.
From 'IRIS' magazine , July/August 1982.

Every border crossing to the 26 counties is controlled by a fortress-like checkpoint ; the inshore coastal zones and Lough Neagh are patrolled by minesweepers and fast patrol boats , and dozens of helicopters equipped with sophisticated surveillance equipment are constantly in the air over nationalist areas , day and night . 'Phantom' jets regularly fly over the whole North-East , taking high-altitude photographs which can show up arms dumps etc .

Every nationalist townland , village or housing estate has a permanent British garrison protected by massive fences and anti-rocket meshes . Armoured jeeps and heavily armoured personnel carriers cruise through the little streets of Belfast , Derry and other nationalist areas . On the border , Saracen armoured cars, which are more resistant to landmines , are used . This vast panoply of armed repression is matched by a series of control measures directed at the nationalist population as a whole . Most adults in the nationalist community have been held for some time by the British forces - thousands of young men and women have passed through prison since 1969 and for those outside there is a daily round of harassment and intimidation by the forces of the State .

Tens of thousands have had their homes raided or destroyed . Most of those arrested have been psychologically abused , brutally assaulted or tortured in the notorious 'interrogation centres' . The intelligence agencies are highly active and the amount of information collected on nationalist areas is quite staggering in its sheer volume and detail . In this area the new technology of political control is vitally important because it allows the British Army to wage a counter-insurgency war within the tighter constraints of a mainly urban European situation quite different from its previous colonial campaigns . A computerised intelligence system is less visible but even more effective than the purely brutal methods employed by the British in their long history of colonial wars * . ('1169...' Comment * : that 'long history' encompasses a bloody trail left behind by the British in more than 56 countries and includes the approximate six million native people murdered by the British for resisting . And that 'long history' is not over yet...) In fact the whole fabric of social life in the occupied area of Ireland has been torn apart . The nationalist people live under a permanent state of siege.......
(MORE LATER).





REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

On December 8th , 1984 , the RUC deployed in massive numbers to obstruct the funerals of IRA Volunteers Willie Fleming and Danny Doherty in Derry. ('1169...'Comment : apologises for the sight of certain pro-system politicians in that link : those same useless , conniving and treacherous politicians are now calling on people to inform to the British forces on those whom , like Volunteers Willie Fleming and Danny Doherty , refuse to accept British mis-rule in Ireland.) In the vicinity of the Fleming family home in the tiny Gobnascale area , the RUC fought hand to hand with heavily outnumbered mourners but , later , in the Creggan area , when faced with a determined thousands-strong crowd , the RUC stayed cautiously well back and the funeral passed off without further incident . The protection of the crowd enabled the IRA to fire a rifle salute and to provide a uniformed Guard of Honour for their fallen comrades .

Sights such as these undoubtedly enraged British ministers and unionist politicians, since they contradicted British efforts to present the IRA as a 'criminal conspiracy' and claim that the bankrupt Six-County state was returning to 'normal' . ('1169...' Comment : surreal now to witness the Adams Family attempt to 'normalise' the British presence as they dismiss present-day anti-partition militants as part of a "criminal conspiracy" !)

But the IRA presence at those funerals was not the cause of the RUC offensive at same - the RUC attacked mourners on many occasions when they knew quite well that an IRA Firing Party salute had already taken place , or would not be taking place . The funeral of IRA Volunteer Seán McIlvenna is a prime example of RUC thuggery after the fact.......
(MORE LATER).







Thursday, December 13, 2007

WHERE DOES THE TIME GO....?

On A Walk Through Rebel Dublin with the Patriot and Heroine Anne Devlin and Charles Stewart Parnell ,
Charlie Kerins , Charlotte Despard, and Che Guevara , we talked ,with A Servant of the Queen , about A Compact History of Ireland .

It was a Courious Journey, this Oral History of Ireland’s Unfinished Revolution and many of the Milestones in Irish History were discussed , as we passed through Dublin Tenement Life . We had No Faith in the System , so we agreed on a Secret Map of Ireland but promised that , despite the Partition of Ireland and all of the ensuing Raids and Rallies , we would not strive for same On Another Man’s Wound....
.....see what else is available here!
Finally - in answer to the question asked at the top of this post -
keep an account of next years time with one of these -
(Front[right] and back of the RSF 2008 Calendar)
- a 2008 Republican calendar,available from here for a fiver (Euro or Sterling) !
Calendars, books, pamphlets, CD's, tapes, T-Shirts etc - all of a Republican 'flavour' - make great 'stocking fillers' and , indeed , make great presents all year round. Visit the Dublin shop at 223 Parnell Street ('phone 01-8729747) or the Belfast shop at 229 Falls Road ('phone 90319004) to make your choice .
Thanks !
Sharon.






Wednesday, December 12, 2007

THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY - PROPPING-UP THE ORANGE STATE........

At a press briefing on May 3rd, 1983, Bishop Cathal Daly declared that a vote for Sinn Fein was 'a wasted vote' , and that people should think seriously before risking being seen as 'supporting violence' . As polling day approached , the rising crescendo of calls from Bishop Daly and other members of the Catholic hierarchy became increasingly explicit in their support for the SDLP. Against the background of this intervention into the arena of nationalist party politics , Patricia Collins sketches the role played by the leadership of the Catholic Church over the past fourteen years against nationalist resistance .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

Sinn Fein's rising profile has been seen to pose a threat not only to the SDLP- it was also seen by the Catholic hierarchy to be a threat to their influence on the nationalist community . At the end of 1982 , Fr Denis Faul made this revealing declaration - " The Provisionals are now posing as politicians ....they are competing with the Church as moral spokesmen for the Catholic community.." The Church's declared 'battle for the hearts and minds' of half a million nationalists was on !

In the occupied six counties , the Catholic church has often been described as a 'quasi-state within the state' : in urban areas especially , unemployed Catholics could spend their entire lives having little contact with the institutions of the Orange state other than signing on the dole and being harassed by the RUC .

From baptism to burial , the Catholic church was at the centre of a network which includes charities , credit unions , residents' associations and youth groups , and the Catholic hierarchy has tried its best to maintain that system , by fighting to retain control of Catholic schools and displaying increasing awareness of the problems of poverty and unemployment . Bishop Cahal Daly's condemnation , in his 1983 Lenten Pastoral , of "...the great injustice all around us ....(the) bad housing (and) the masses of unemployed and their dependants.." is a far cry from the suggestion his predecessor , Bishop William Philbin, made to a meeting of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society in 1965 , that the Catholic church "...helps people who , although their incomes were adequate , found themselves in distress due to mismanagement of their household budgets.."
(MORE LATER).



THE POLITICS OF REPRESSION .

Repression is not just bullets and the kick on the door at dawn. Repression is an integrated imperialist policy to deal with a risen people which encompasses all facets of social and political life.
From 'IRIS' magazine , July/August 1982.

Every single policy executed by the British state in the North of Ireland is geared towards their over-riding objective - to defeat the PIRA and 'normalise' the situation . ('1169...' Comment : how ironic that matters developed to the point where the PIRA surrendered , changed into 'suits' and joined with their foe in an attempt to normalise the British presence !)

We cannot separate 'reform' from 'repression' as though they were the carrot and the stick - both are part and parcel of the politics of repression . ('1169...' Comment : that statement was , at the time , aimed at the Workers Party , the SDLP and Fianna Fail : it was used to point-out to supporters of those parties the futility of attempting to 'use' Stormont as a 'stepping stone' to Irish unity . However , the 'preacher' turned...) Since British troops were deployed on the streets of the North in 1969 until today , there has been an expansion and refining of military operations against the nationalist people . In a very real sense , Ireland has become a 'laboratory of repression' for Western imperialism as a whole - a place to test weapons , surveillance equipment and counter-insurgency tactics generally .

Including its local forces of the Royal Ulster Constabulary and Ulster (sic) Defence Regiment (UDR) , the British government has 35,000 armed personnel at its command to 'control' a nationalist population of 500,000 - that is a ratio of 1 soldier/RUC member to every 15 people.......
(MORE LATER).





REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

Events at the funeral in Magherafelt of IRA Volunteer Antoine Mac Giolla Bhrighde on December 4th , 1984 , suggested that the aim of British policy was nothing less than the banning from funerals of every symbol of the national struggle . As Antoine MacGiolla Bhrighde's coffin , covered only with a Tricolour , was carried from the family home , scores of RUC men kicked and punched their way to the front of the house in an unsuccessful attempt to seize the flag .

On the wishes of the dead man's distressed mother , the Tricolour was removed in the hope of preventing further incidents and injury , but the RUC showed that they had no interest in coming to an accommodation with the bereaved families , and that instead their aim was to impose their 'control' , their 'power' , on Irish republican funerals - for even after the Tricolour was removed , they continued to harass mourners and used their jeeps to 'split' the crowd of mourners and used one of their vehicles to ram the car in which the family of Antoine MacGiolla Bhrighde was travelling in - this was an attempt by the RUC to cut in directly behind the hearse . At this point the family bravely halted the funeral and , after a 20 minute delay , the RUC thugs withdrew in their Land Rovers.

On the 10th December , 1984 , the Bishop of Down and Connor , Cahal Daly, made a well-publicised speech proclaming the 'legitimacy and rightness' of what he termed "..the British dimension in Northern Ireland..."
(MORE LATER).







Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Almost 12 months since it was 'only' thirty years.....

(UPDATE : this swim now has its own 'Jewellery Range'! And , as with all top-class pieces of jewellery , it has a 'history' attached to it...)

It began - properly structured and organised - in 1976 ,as a 'fundraiser with a difference' combined with the need to gain extra publicity for a situation which was then - as now - making world headlines . Those that sat down together in early September 1976 to tighten-up the then 'hit-and-miss' affair were a dedicated team who fully understood that to fail in their business would not only bring derision on them and the issue they sought to highlight , but would give their enemy a publicity coup which they would exploit to the fullest extent . With that in mind , the team persevered - favours were called-in , guarantees were secured , provisions obtained and word dispatched to like-minded individuals in the near-locale . At the appointed time on the agreed day - 12 Noon , Christmas Day 1976 - a soon-to-be 31-years-young event was 'born'.......
The CABHAIR Christmas Day Swim is , thankfully , still going strong and will be , as mentioned , 31-years-young on December 25th next!
Photographs of last years event can be viewed here and , if you can't make it to the actual swim itself , you might consider posting a donation to the following address :
CABHAIR
Irish Republican Prisoners Dependants Fund
223 Parnell Street,
Dublin 1.
Ireland.

Thank You,
Go Raibh Maith Agat,

Sharon.






Monday, December 10, 2007

THE CATHOLIC HIERARCHY - PROPPING-UP THE ORANGE STATE.

At a press briefing on May 3rd, 1983, Bishop Cathal Daly declared that a vote for Sinn Fein was 'a wasted vote' , and that people should think seriously before risking being seen as 'supporting violence' . As polling day approached , the rising crescendo of calls from Bishop Daly and other members of the Catholic hierarchy became increasingly explicit in their support for the SDLP. Against the background of this intervention into the arena of nationalist party politics , Patricia Collins sketches the role played by the leadership of the Catholic Church over the past fourteen years against nationalist resistance .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

" The gravest danger which has been created for Belfast Catholicism for half a century. " These were the words chosen by Dr Cahal Daly , Bishop of Down and Connor, on January 18th , 1983, to describe 'republican violence' . The occasion was the funeral of Judge William Doyle , executed by the IRA a few days earlier . However , the danger which Bishop Cahal Daly saw the IRA as creating was not of a religious or theological nature - according to this bishop , the IRA has no moral right to use force against British occupation .

Its methods are therefore 'illegal' and 'evil' . According to the Catholic hierarchy , in fact , in Bishop Daly's own words , IRA violence is the "...greatest evil.." in Irish society . But what of the violence of the British Army , the RUC and the UDR - of which there were plenty of examples in the winter of 1982/3 - ? On November 27th , 1982 , at another funeral - that of young Michael Tighe, gunned down by the RUC in Lurgan -the Catholic Bishop of Dromore , Dr. Francis Brooke , spoke in massive contrast of the RUC's "...most difficult and dangerous responsibility.." and of their job of "...restoring law and order in the Province (sic).." . It would certainly seem that in the eyes of the Church there are two distinct types of violence , only one of which is to be condemned .

During this latest phase of the struggle , Northern nationalists have continually been subjected to political haranguing and preaching by the Catholic hierarchy , which has used all the means at its disposal , from the pulpit and the school assembly halls to the newspapers and television screens , to hammer home its message - 'renounce armed resistance , turn away from the Republican Movement'.......
(MORE LATER).






TOXIC WASTE IN KILL,COUNTY KILDARE .......
From 'The Phoenix' magazine , May 1983.

While it is almost impossible to establish the origins of particular cancers or leukaemia , and while still-births and miscarriages are by no means exceptional , the fear of a possible relationship to the illegal and lethal dump is one that has sprung to not a few minds .

Both the County medical officer and the local doctor have , however , discounted any relationship between these cases and the dump : as in all such circumstances , only time will tell . It would , however , help to allay these fears and potential alarm if the authorities were to explain to the people of Kill , County Kildare , precisely the present dangers of the dump .
[END of 'TOXIC WASTE IN KILL,COUNTY KILDARE']
(NEXT : 'The Policy Of Repression' , from 1982)





REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

In July 1984 , the British offensive was escalated again at the funeral of PIRA Volunteer William Price in Brockagh , County Tyrone . At least 12 mourners were injured , some requiring hospital treatment , after RUC men jostled and trampled mourners . A number of the wounded suffered blows to the head from plastic-bullet guns or batons . The crown forces' operation involved hundreds of RUC men dressed for a riot , backed-up by a similar number of British soldiers and scores of armoured Land Rovers . As Volunteer William Price's coffin left the family home , mourners linked arms and successfully prevented any RUC incursion .

On August 8th , 1984 , the funeral took place in Newry of PIRA Volunteer Brendan Watters who was killed in a premature explosion . The RUC tried to rush the Tricolour-draped coffin as it was carried from the family's Derrybeg home but , once again , a massive display of British military might and firepower was frustrated by hundreds of unarmed mourners who linked arms to form a human barrier .

The crown forces were well aware that the PIRA had paid their final salute to their fallen comrade two nights before - nevertheless , the RUC made several violent attempts to scatter mourners and to seize the Tricolour from Brendan Watters' coffin , giving up only after the determination of the mourners to stop them had proved unshakeable . Other events in the weeks ahead , at Republican funerals , was proof that Westminster had ordered that any perceived symbol of nationalism at a funeral would be a target.......
(MORE LATER).







Sunday, December 09, 2007

The 13 prizes in the CABHAIR draw held in Dublin this weekend.

The above photograph shows the 13 prizes which were offered in a raffle for CABHAIR which was held this weekend in a Social Club in Dublin .The envelopes contain cash prizes , ranging in value from €200 to €20.
The event went without a hitch , save for there being a shortage of tickets , and the CABHAIR crew are to be congratulated for their work , time and patience in putting such an event together and seeing it through without a fault! Thanks to John and Liam for 'working' the drum ,to Georgina , Paddy and Tony for doing the result sheets and to Antoinette , George , Anne , Tommy and John C. , amongst others, for helping to sell tickets and making themselves available on the day to help out. Much appreciated!
The winning ticket numbers are - 611/379/459/452/522/404/293/431/319/444/086/069 and 564. Go raibh maith agat agus slán go fóill anois!
Sharon.






Saturday, December 08, 2007

WHERE DOES THE TIME GO....?

On A Walk Through Rebel Dublin with the Patriot and Heroine Anne Devlin and Charles Stewart Parnell ,
Charlie Kerins , Charlotte Despard, and Che Guevara , we talked ,with A Servant of the Queen , about A Compact History of Ireland .

It was a Courious Journey, this Oral History of Ireland’s Unfinished Revolution and many of the Milestones in Irish History were discussed , as we passed through Dublin Tenement Life . We had No Faith in the System , so we agreed on a Secret Map of Ireland but promised that , despite the Partition of Ireland and all of the ensuing Raids and Rallies , we would not strive for same On Another Man’s Wound....
.....see what else is available here!
Finally - in answer to the question asked at the top of this post -
keep an account of next years time with one of these -
(Front[right] and back of the RSF 2008 Calendar)
- a 2008 Republican calendar,available from here for a fiver (Euro or Sterling) !
Calendars, books, pamphlets, CD's, tapes, T-Shirts etc - all of a Republican 'flavour' - make great 'stocking fillers' and , indeed , make great presents all year round. Visit the Dublin shop at 223 Parnell Street ('phone 01-8729747) or the Belfast shop at 229 Falls Road ('phone 90319004) to make your choice .
Thanks !
Sharon.






Friday, December 07, 2007



DERRY - A STRATEGY OF NEGLECT.......

" I need hardly point out to you that in Derry , unless something is done now , it is only a matter of time until Derry passes into the hands of the Nationalist and Sinn Fein parties for all time . On the other hand , if proper steps are taken now , I believe Derry can be saved for years to come... " - [British] 'Sir' Dawson Bates to [British] 'Lord' Craigavon , 1934 .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

The 1963 'Matthew Plan' was re-inforced by the 1970-75 'Matthew/Wilson Economic Development Plan' which , while finally designating Derry as a potential area of industrial growth , suggested that the future lay not with introducing massive investment into areas such as Derry but in encouraging migration from those areas to new centres of growth such as Craigavon .

Similarly the New University of Ulster was located in Coleraine , a politically motivated decision which ensured the relative failure of the NUU as an academic centre of excellence : it was policies such as these that led the architect Coppcutt , who had been brought over from England to design Craigavon , to resign in disgust , saying that the designation of Craigavon as a new city was a consequence of religious and political considerations , and that if Derry was developed instead "...this would indeed be earnest of the sincerity of the desire to prepare Ulster (sic) for the 21st century ."

He added that Craigavon would prevent growth in other regions , and that he and his team were not being asked to make a positive contribution to the growth of the Six County area but to "... engineer propaganda rather than a new city.."
[END of 'Derry - A Strategy Of Neglect']
(Next : 'The Catholic Hierarchy - Propping-up The Orange State' , from 1983)





TOXIC WASTE IN KILL,COUNTY KILDARE .......
From 'The Phoenix' magazine , May 1983.

By 1980 , the local County Council took notice of complaints and the long-drawn-out legal procedures began , during which time , of course , the dumpers continued to fill the pit to capacity . The Council are stating that the situation is under control for the present , that the dump is contained by the ponds , and that there is no cause for undue alarm . Local residents , however , are none too happy .

Down in the growing village of Kill , other questions are being asked and fears exchanged : some residents have pointed-out to 'The Phoenix' what they perceive as an unusually high instance of cancer and leukaemia in a small area of Kill . In the past few years , four people under forty have died of cancer and another three of leukaemia , two of these latter children of two and seven years . Since 1981 there have been three full-term babies still-born and a further three badly deformed foeti , miscarried at seven months of pregnancy.......
(MORE LATER).






REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

The Catholic Hierarchy continued to practise the same double standards as they did in January 1980 over the body of PIRA Volunteer Kevin 'Dee' Delaney or in 1861 over the Young Irelander Terence Bellew McManus, against whose remains every church door in Dublin was locked , on the orders of Cardinal Cullen.

Though the RUC attacked nationalist funerals , members of the British occupation forces continued to be buried in Catholic churches with full military honours , including the Union Jack flag on coffins during services . The Catholic Hierarchy's attitude to the recent funeral of Derry Volunteer Gerard Logue was very different : two days after the PIRA fired a salute in the grounds of Long Tower Church, local Catholic Bishop, Edward Daly, aligned the hierarchy with the British occupation forces by banning the remains of dead Volunteers from all churches in the city . He also implied that the family of Volunteer Gerard Logue had broken assurances which they firmly denied .

In June 1984 (four months after the funerals of PIRA Volunteers Henry Hogan and Declan Martin) , RUC men with batons drawn confronted mourners taking the coffin of Belfast INLA Volunteer Paul McCann to lie overnight in the local St Peter's Chapel . At the following day's funeral , the British Army and the RUC staged a show of strength , blocked the Falls Road and refused to let the funeral cortege proceed until an INLA guard of honour withdrew.......
(MORE LATER).







Thursday, December 06, 2007




These two photographs show five of the thirteen items that will be given as prizes in a CABHAIR raffle , which will be held this coming weekend in a venue in Dublin . The other eight prizes consist of cash in an envelope , ranging from amounts of €200 to €20 . The tickets - all of which have already been sold - cost €2 each.

But don't fret! You can still help CABHAIR - have a look here and here and , if you have a few quid and the time to follow-up either(or both!) of those two suggestions, please do so :CABHAIR does its best , all year round, to assist with the financial problems faced by the families of those imprisoned as a direct result of the political situation on this island and , as to be expected , those financial problems increase at this time of year.

Your assistance would be greatly appreciated,
Thanks!
Sharon.

POST SCRIPT : Sincere best of luck to Michael on his endeavours (which , incidentally , should be shared by all those who are opposed to the political criminality practised by these thugs) .
His website has been off-line recently and , if it's still unobtainable from the above link , you can get a brief substance of his approach here. And you can get the reasons why his idea should be supported here, here and here.
We hope the day is the success it deserves to be!






Wednesday, December 05, 2007



DERRY - A STRATEGY OF NEGLECT.......

" I need hardly point out to you that in Derry , unless something is done now , it is only a matter of time until Derry passes into the hands of the Nationalist and Sinn Fein parties for all time . On the other hand , if proper steps are taken now , I believe Derry can be saved for years to come... " - [British] 'Sir' Dawson Bates to [British] 'Lord' Craigavon , 1934 .
From 'IRIS' magazine , July 1983.

Westminster policy produced the major regional , economic and social disparities that exist today along the line running East and West of the River Bann . Protestant allegiance was maintained in these areas by a system of political and economic patronage which ensured that Protestant employers gave first preference to Protestants in both public sector and private employment .

In 1962 , 97-per-cent of all government-sponsored industrial investment was restricted to the greater Belfast area : by 1964 , of 111 advance factories sponsored by the Stormont administratiion only 16 were located West of the Bann : by 1968 , of 240 government-sponsored firms employing 60,000 , only 10-per-cent were employed West of the Bann .

Not until 1965-69 were any commercial land holdings purchased West of the Bann by the Stormont administration for industrial investment . These disparities in industrial location survive to this day . The 'Matthew Plan' of 1963 , which limited the further expansion for Belfast , totally ignored Derry's potential as the North's second largest city and opted instead for the creation of a new town , 'Craigavon', securely within the unionist heartland . An 'economic development' plan was drawn-up to re-inforce the 'Matthew Plan'.......
(MORE LATER).






TOXIC WASTE IN KILL,COUNTY KILDARE .......
From 'The Phoenix' magazine , May 1983.

In other words , by the time the first inspection was made , an unknown quantity of possibly the most dangerous materials in the country had been deposited illegally in a manner and mixture unknown . In many other countries such developments have provoked major scandals but , in this case , Willie O'Brien , a disposer of industrial waste who is the principal depositor at the site , has not even been asked to give an explanation of what his company dumped , when , and in what quantities !

The scandal was exposed in the first instance when local residents around the site and down the hill almost a mile away in Kill village began to complain of a nauseating smell emanating from the dump . The residents also noticed a steadily increasing traffic of O'Brien's trucks up to the pit . It is thought that the land owner , Patrick Gavin , has , in fact , leased the whole quarry to Willie O'Brien for his disposal operation .

The late night rumbling of heavy trucks through the village and up the hill to the dump noticeably increased during the row at the Raybestos Manhattan dump in Ringaskiddy ,Cork, in 1979 , when residents there opposed the dumping of asbestos waste . Willie O'Brien was also the contractor for the Abbeyleix-based Stonearch Ltd plant , the effluent from which wiped out all life - fish , birds , rats and water hens - in a ten-mile stretch of the River Credogue near Mitchellstown , Cork , in June 1980 . Where the highly lethal effluent , identified as a derivative of chromium, has been dumped since then , is not known.......
(MORE LATER).






REPUBLICAN MOURNERS DEFEAT RUC.......
Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

Condemning the British attack on the funeral of INLA Volunteer Joseph Craven, A Belfast Provisional Sinn Fein spokesperson observed : " If the (P)IRA were to attempt to remove the cap and gloves or the Union Jack flag from an RUC man's coffin , or were to stop and harass mourners , or were to drown out graveside prayers and the oration , they would be condemned by every clergyman and politician in Ireland . (Provisional) Sinn Fein is attacked for refusing to be hypocrites like these others , who all support the violence of the State , the violence of the SAS and the corrupt laws of a colonial power. " ('1169...' Comment : it should be noted that now Mr Adams and Company have no problem in playing their part in that 'State' , will never again suffer at the hands of the SAS [as they are no longer a military or political threat to that State] and have no issue anymore in assisting 'the corrupt laws of a colonial power' . The Provos are , in effect , Free State and British 'rebel pets' .)

Two months later , on February 24th , 1984 , the RUC were again out in force harassing mourners , this time at the funerals of (P)IRA Volunteers Henry Hogan and Declan Martin. Long before dawn , hundreds of RUC members saturated the small North Antrim village of Dunloy and at one point tried to force their way into the Hogan house , but mourners remained calm and dignified and linked arms to form a three-deep human barricade , preventing any RUC attempt to remove the Tricolour.

Once again , the RUC intruded even into the churchyard , but withdrew after Volunteer Henry Hogan's family declared that they would not leave the chapel until the RUC left its grounds . Again the silence was deafening - Irish politicians and church leaders were silent , a 'pattern' they were to keep for the next three years : those who claimed to be the moral and spiritual leaders of the country failed to speak out , and thus allowed the RUC attacks to continue , and stayed silent as they witnessed the injuries and the sufferings of bereaved relatives and friends.......
(MORE LATER).