" 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 - ooops! It seems that our entry application was "not completed in time to be considered.." (?) and, as such, we are not now in the running. But we wish all the best to the successful entrants and to the organisers, and we hope all goes well for them on the day!


Saturday, February 24, 2007

BRIEF REPORT ON THE TWO DUBLIN PROTEST MARCHES HELD ON SATURDAY 24 FEBRUARY 2007 :


One of the placards carried by an RSF protestor outside Croke Park on Saturday , February 24 , 2007 .
Incidentally - and apparently , under "...Section Eight of the Criminal Justice Bill 2004..." (which was quoted and used by the Gardai against the protestors outside Croke Park) a member of the State Gardai can deem it an 'offence' to put the hood of your jacket up and can not only request , demand and/or insist that you remove your hood , but can - and did at the protest , a number of times - actually physically pull your hood down . The rain on Saturday , February 24 , at Croke Park was heavy and prolonged and the Gardai took great delight in pulling down the jacket hoods of the protestors and telling them that , should they put the hood back up , they would be arrested immediately . However , those with umbrellas were left unmolested.......



John Horan , Republican Sinn Fein , Dublin , photographed today outside the Garden Of Remembrance, Parnell Square , Dublin .

At approximately 12.15pm , RSF members and supporters gathered at the Parnell Monument in O'Connell Street (near Parnell Square) holding banners in support of the 'Shell 2 Sea' campaign , whose protest march was due to leave from outside the Garden of Remembrance at 2pm . There was about one dozen RSF people at the Parnell Monument when , at approximately 1.20pm , a Garda Superintendent and nine of his fellow uniformed colleagues bustled their way into the centre of the RSF people and announced that they were all under arrest for breaching the 'Public Order Act' !

The Gardai were immediately challenged on their assertion , and replied that this particular RSF gathering "....was an illegal street meeting held without notification to the proper authorities.." . 'Verbals' ensued between both groups , with the RSF people insisting that they would not be detered from showing their support for the 'S2S' campaigners , and the Superintendent and his colleagues demanding that the RSF group should proceed to the white Garda 'Transit'-type van (parked outside the Parnell Mooney pub a few metres away) or else they would be man-handled to the vehicle . It should be noted here that no traffic was being blocked by the RSF people , nor was there trouble of any kind , before the Gardai arrived on the scene .
Eventually - after more brief discussion - a compromise was reached : the dozen or so RSF team were 'allowed' by the Gardai to continue with their peaceful picket on a spot which was practically just across the road (nearer to the Ambassador Cinema site than they had originally been) and the Superintendent and his colleagues 'escorted' the RSF people to their 'new' position ! The combined group had barely taken a few steps when the Gardai stood in front of one of the RSF supporters and accused him , amongst other things , of being "cheeky" . The young lad in question was surrounded by the Gardai , roughly searched and told he would be immediately arrested if he was seen in the city centre anytime that day !

In the event , the RSF people decided to add their presence to the numbers already gathered a few metres up the road , nearer to the Garden Of Remembrance . The Superintendent and his men did not object.....

Republican Sinn Fein had approximately fifty members and supporters on the 'S2S' protest march , but left said march early to make their way to Croke Park for the picket which they were holding there to highlight - for one thing - the fact that the visiting team were representative of a country which continues to claim jurisdiction over Irish territory . Again , an 'escort' was provided by about one-hundred Gardai : on arrival at the protest site - by which time the RSF contingent now numbered approximately 100 people - a group of RSF members and supporters , who had travelled separately to that area , brought the number of protestors to between 100 and 150 people . The protest was lively , colourful , loud - and peaceful , despite the predictions of doom announced and forecast by the majority of media commentators . Dozens of flags , banners and posters were held aloft by the protestors in the , by now , heavy rainfall . A letter explaining the reasons for the protest was (as near as possible!) handed in to the GAA Office , and Ruairi Mor O Bradaigh and Des Dalton delivered a fine principled speech and/or interviews to the dozen or so media representatives present .
Also , it was particularly heartening to see a group from the IRSP standing , with their own banner , shoulder-to-shoulder with other Irish Republicans at this protest.
The Garda Riot Squad and their 'ordinary' uniformed colleagues , and their 'betters' in the Special Branch (political police) 'provided' an 'escort' out of the area for the protestors , when the latter had decided that they had made their point .
All in all - apart from the weather (!) it was a day well spent , in putting across a message that needs to be put across : that , as long as any foreign entity claims jurisdiction over any part of this island , there will be those amongst us who will object . No amount of 'sporting fixtures' or other such 'niceties' will change that fact , and no amount of State harassment will prevent us from doing so !

Sharon.







TWO DESERVING PROTESTS TODAY :

Shell to Sea will be holding a national rally in Dublin today ,Saturday 24th March , 2007 .
The march will assemble at the Garden of Remembrance, Parnell Square at 2pm and proceed down O'Connell St, around D'Olier St and back to the GPO where it will be addressed by speakers from the Trade Union movement, the Rossport community and the Rossport solidarity camp. The event will be chaired by a representative of Dublin Shell to Sea.
All supporters, members and affiliates of the campaign are asked to attend and lend their support.
For further information contact-
dublinshelltosea@yahoogroups.com



CROKE PARK :PICKET ON IRELAND/ENGLAND RUGBY MATCH .

SATURDAY FEBRUARY 24, 2007 .

RSF Croke Park protest-
Those wishing to protest at the playing of God Save the Queen (English national anthem) and the flying of the English flag in Croke Park whilst England continues to occupy part of Ireland should assemble at the junction of North Circular Road and Summerhill Parade near the Sunset House pub on Saturday, February 24 at 3.30pm.






Friday, February 23, 2007

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GERRY ADAMS.......

The recent strike by BBC journalists over the 'REAL LIVES' programme and the dispute at RTE over the interview with NORAID representative MARTIN GALVIN have focused world attention on Sinn Fein once again .MICHAEL KELLY spoke to Sinn Fein president GERRY ADAMS at interviews in Dublin and Belfast , conducted over the course of the past month .

From 'IN DUBLIN' magazine, August 1985 .

The centre of Belfast , with its shopping precincts , resembles Dublin . The iron gates to the shopping areas are unmanned now and most shops have dispensed with searching their customers . The affluent and the trendy shop freely and the atmosphere seems no different to that of the city two hours' train journey away to the South .

This article is an examination of the phenomenon of Sinn Fein north and south of the border and was researched by talking to the party's workers both in Belfast and in Dublin's suburbs . However its major concern is an interview with Mr. Gerry Adams MP , given before the present furore about the BBC's Martin McGuinness (pictured here, with other Westminster employees) interview . A Sinn Fein spokesman last week said it is an 'insult to people's intelligence ' not to screen interviews with Sinn Fein and that people should be let make up their own minds . The interview with Gerry Adams , which we will shortly get to , is published verbatim .

Looking at Gerry Adams MP , you find it hard to visualise him as the political end of the 'Armalites and ballot-box' strategy of the Provisional IRA . Sitting in front of you in short sleeves , steel-rimmed glasses topping a ready grin , he doesn't resemble Michael Noonan's nightmares of Ian Paisley's 'Anti-Christ' . The credibility of 'The Sunday Times's' assertion that he is commander-in-chief of the IRA is also stretched . ('1169...' Comment - ....we now know that Mr Adams was never even in the PIRA, never mind being a leading figure in said organisation . Why the very idea......)
(MORE LATER).



THE ACCUSING FINGER OF RAYMOND GILMOUR.......
By NEIL McCAFFERTY.
From 'MAGILL' magazine, August 1983 .

If you came from Derry , as all the defendants and their relatives did , and all the defence solicitors did , and two of the journalists did , and Raymond Gilmour did , his halting evidence was like a slow and gentle journey round the town .

First he went to Hugh Duffy's house in Lislane Drive - of course you mentally nod , there's Hugh sitting over there , know that street well , know his mother too - a widow woman , worked as a cleaner for a while in the schools , what's she doing now , you wonder - and then Raymond Gilmour says Hugh sent him over to Ducksie Doherty's house ..... hello Ducksie , instinctively your head nods in greeting to him : grand nick-name that , terrific smile Ducksie , he's all teeth . And then Gilmour ended up in McCann's fish and chip shop down in the Brandywell. McCann's , a location to conjure with , the place where you go after bingo or a dance in the Lourdes Community Hall, a terrific place to hang around on a mild late summer's night , its glass windows comfortingly lit up during the winter .

Then Raymond mentions a street in the Brandywell , not all that familiar really - the area is being reconstructed by the day , with new housing everywhere - and , as you puzzle this one you are jerked back into the courtroom : the rifle was hidden under a concrete block , "...there was a green tile over the block , lino over the tile , and the cooker was on top of that.." . Raymond says he was taken into the bathroom and shown how to use the rifle : " There was frosted glass in the bathroom window so no one could see through it ..." He named the men and women in that house , in that kitchen , on that day . It could be true , it might not be true . " Sorry , your honour , " Raymond Gilmour says , conversationally , " ....I forgot to mention Cathy Miller and Betty McSheffrey . They had been there , too ....... "
(MORE LATER).



NEW DEPARTURES FOR SINN FEIN....... ?
Sinn Fein's recent election success in the North of Ireland have focussed attention on the Provisionals' new turn to political activity at local level . There have been parallel developments in the organisation in the 26 counties .
'GRALTON' magazine spoke to Paddy Bolger , Ard Comhairle member and National Organiser for Sinn Fein ,with special responsibility for Dublin , about the changed perspective .
From 'GRALTON' magazine , August/September 1983 .

'GRALTON' magazine : " Let's take Rank's as an example . You are heavily involved there . How did that arise and what's Sinn Fein hoping to achieve through its involvement ? "

PADDY BOLGER : " The situation there is that the workers had a high level of consciousness about the state of the industry . They were politically fairly advanced already , and were isolated at the start of the dispute and some of them turned to us . We did not get involved politically . We didn't want to get them a 'bad name' , as you might say . But we did provide the service of a phone , stationery and contacts with journalists and trade unionists who might assist . Our attitude is that we did not intervene , that the workers asked us to become involved . We didn't inititate any policy decisions which the workers took . We're very pleased from our own political position to see how they have responded , especially in their manifesto which is one of the best pieces of trade union commentary which we have seen for years . We didn't believe that a party can intervene in a strike if the workers themselves haven't decided on a line of action .

We are the only grouping on the Left which has a substantial base which gave Ranks' workers any help . We would have preferred if the trade union movement had given them more active support . "
(MORE LATER).







Thursday, February 22, 2007

CROKE PARK :PICKET ON IRELAND/ENGLAND RUGBY MATCH .


SATURDAY FEBRUARY 24, 2007 .

RSF Croke Park protest-
Those wishing to protest at the playing of God Save the Queen (English national anthem) and the flying of the English flag in Croke Park whilst England continues to occupy part of Ireland should assemble at the junction of North Circular Road and Summerhill Parade near the Sunset House pub on Saturday, February 24 at 3.30pm.






Wednesday, February 21, 2007

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GERRY ADAMS.......

The recent strike by BBC journalists over the 'REAL LIVES' programme and the dispute at RTE over the interview with NORAID representative MARTIN GALVIN have focused world attention on Sinn Fein once again .MICHAEL KELLY spoke to Sinn Fein president GERRY ADAMS at interviews in Dublin and Belfast , conducted over the course of the past month .

From 'IN DUBLIN' magazine, August 1985 .

Do young people of one religion ever meet those of another socially ? People on all sides looked at me with polite disdain : they all know that they only ever meet in very formal school situations and none believe that contact of this type will solve the 'Troubles' . One nationalist woman told me - " It's like saying 'if you got the children of the contras and the Sandinistas together that the problems of Nicaragua would be solved' " .

When you leave the Sinn Fein offices the reality of Belfast becomes apparent - an eight-man patrol of young , nervous British soldiers weaved their way from side to side up the street , now and then crouching in doorways , their FN rifles at the ready . The few local people about - mostly old , for it's an old area - hurried about their business oblivious to everything that was happening .

If Dublin has been described by some commentators as resembling London in the Blitz, then Belfast , both in the Falls and the Shankill Road , is more like Dresden. Large tracts of land resemble the most tumbledown areas of Dublin's North Quays - old men and women hurry along the streets of terraced houses left standing and small groups of youths gather at the street corners.......
(MORE LATER).



THE ACCUSING FINGER OF RAYMOND GILMOUR.......
By NEIL McCAFFERTY.
From 'MAGILL' magazine, August 1983 .

Raymond Gilmour shunned looks and he sat concealed , and he did not look up into the public gallery , where his mother sat , and his three sisters and his brother . His father was not there - he was taken into custody (link here - see near end of page) by the Provisional IRA after Raymond Gilmour turned informer , and no one but the IRA knows where he is , and they have said they will kill him if Raymond Gilmour does not retract his evidence .

On Monday morning , July 25 , at twenty minutes past eleven , after the British crown prosecution had outlined the bones of the case , Raymond Gilmour started to give evidence : for one hour he spoke , but not in a rush , and not in an unbroken flow . First the prosecution , taking his cue from a very thick dossier that looked like an unbound novel - Gilmour's statements to the RUC - asked a question - " On the afternoon of ... were you.... " and as he spoke a woman seated below the magistrate typed out the question .

If she did not get the full question she asked the prosecutor to repeat it and he did , and then she read it back to him to be sure . Then Raymond Gilmour answered the question and the woman typed as he spoke , and sometimes she'd ask him to repeat a phrase.......
(MORE LATER).



NEW DEPARTURES FOR SINN FEIN....... ?
Sinn Fein's recent election success in the North of Ireland have focussed attention on the Provisionals' new turn to political activity at local level . There have been parallel developments in the organisation in the 26 counties .
'GRALTON' magazine spoke to Paddy Bolger , Ard Comhairle member and National Organiser for Sinn Fein ,with special responsibility for Dublin , about the changed perspective .
From 'GRALTON' magazine , August/September 1983 .

'GRALTON' magazine : " How do you choose issues at local or regional or national level for your involvement ? The issues volunteer themselves in the service work but how do you decide to commit resources to an industrial issue or a political issue ? "

PADDY BOLGER : " We have a general policy mapped out by the Ard Comhairle (National Executive) . So , in the industrial sphere , we are opposed to closures and in favour of occupations to prevent them . We have always been opposed to centralised wage bargaining . Strike action is spontaneous and specific - often not very different in structure from the kind of problem we get in the clientelist work - and our members have directions to support that kind of action . They do it not as a political intervention , but in support of the workers' own demands . "
(MORE LATER).







Monday, February 19, 2007

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GERRY ADAMS.......

The recent strike by BBC journalists over the 'REAL LIVES' programme and the dispute at RTE over the interview with NORAID representative MARTIN GALVIN have focused world attention on Sinn Fein once again .MICHAEL KELLY spoke to Sinn Fein president GERRY ADAMS at interviews in Dublin and Belfast , conducted over the course of the past month .

From 'IN DUBLIN' magazine, August 1985 .

Barbara De Brun, Sinn Fein's press officer in Belfast , has an office up the winding stairs from where you can see the derelict sites which make up large tracts of West Belfast . The problems of the young in Belfast are exactly the same as those in Dublin - lack of jobs and money , bad housing and few facilities . She says the big difference is that they have to suffer constant harassment from the British army and 'security forces'.

Anyone in Belfast will tell you that the big difference between growing up in the two cities is that young people rarely go into town - nightclubs and cinemas are unused by the young , who fear to leave their own areas , and this is particularly true of the nationalist areas . The 'Fair Employment Agency' there recently reported that , even after all the controversy over employment at the Short Brothers Plant, only one of the eight apprentices taken on this year was a nationalist .

Social workers in the city tell a story of growing deprivation on all sides in the city , with people falling into a vicious circle of more and more debt : they owe money for electricity and this is automatically debited from their welfare payments , leaving them owing more under the 'Payment of Debt (Emergency Provisions) Act', which is only in force in the Six Counties . In areas like the Divis Flats there is high mortality rate for infants , high incidence of spina bifida, and many people suffer from pulmonary diseasea.......
(MORE LATER).



THE ACCUSING FINGER OF RAYMOND GILMOUR.......
By NEIL McCAFFERTY.
From 'MAGILL' magazine, August 1983 .

Raymond Gilmour did not look like Raymond Gilmour : as lately as twelve months ago he looked just like the prisoners in the dock , the young men and women from the Bogside and the Creggan among whom he had grown up , with many of whom he had socialised , with one of whom he had been drinking in a bar on the night before the RUC came to his Creggan home and loaded him and his wife and children into an armoured car and their furniture into a removal lorry and took them into 'protective custody' .

Later that morning the RUC returned to the Creggan and took away the man with whom Raymond Gilmour had been drinking , charged him with a great many things and charged a great many other people as well . That man and the others in the dock looked now like they had always looked , as Raymond Gilmour had always used to look - like part of a working-class crowd , in tee-shirts and plain sweaters , with plain haircuts , with pale faces or a ruddy complexion , the odd tattoo on a forearm , and jeans and scuffed shoes , which were occasionally visible when they leaned back in their chairs and rested a foot on the rail of the dock .

Raymond Gilmour , fully visible to the press alone , was beautifully dressed in a tailored slim-line dark blue suit : his shirt was a brand new gleaming white one , the striped silver and dark red tie a little too glittering perhaps . His skin was evenly tanned , the newly grown black beard trimmed neatly to his jawline . His hair was glossy , parted in the middle , but blow-dried so that it rose softly above the parting and fell gently on either side . His finger-nails were manicured . He looked , as they say in Derry , a 'credit....'
(MORE LATER).



NEW DEPARTURES FOR SINN FEIN....... ?
Sinn Fein's recent election success in the North of Ireland have focussed attention on the Provisionals' new turn to political activity at local level . There have been parallel developments in the organisation in the 26 counties .
'GRALTON' magazine spoke to Paddy Bolger , Ard Comhairle member and National Organiser for Sinn Fein ,with special responsibility for Dublin , about the changed perspective .
From 'GRALTON' magazine , August/September 1983 .

'GRALTON' magazine : " Do you find in your service work when acting as intermediaries between the consumers and the state or the local bureaucracy , you get a response as Sinn Fein ? "

PADDY BOLGER : " Certainly in Dublin Corporation we haven't experienced any prejudice from the administrative people . A lot of them are very helpful , and even at this low level of servicing they recognise that there is a real concern . The average TD (sic - Leinster House member) will deal with problems by correspondence whereas we have two full time people working with Christy Burke in the No. 6 electoral area who actually go to the Corporation every morning and work through the files with the Corporation people . We certainly have credibility with them , and have been very successful in housing matters , particularly with transfers .

The Labour Party and The Workers Party won't deal with such cases because they are transferring votes out . We have a woman working in the Ballymun area part-time who is likely to be the candadate there , but she is handling transfers out of the constituency . We also involve the community in the work we are doing , and have advisors invited on to tenants' associations in three city centre areas . "
(MORE LATER).