Saturday, January 11, 2003

.....after the split in the Republican Movement in January 1970 , Jimmy Steele , a member of the IRA's Belfast Brigade Staff and the Provisional Army Executive ( a post he held until his death) was active in Belfast re-organising and re-arming IRA units to defend Nationalist areas from attack by Orange mobs backed-up by the B-Specials and RUC . A founder member of ' Republican News' in June 1970 , the four-page weekly paper under the editorship of Steele soon had a circulation of 15,000 copies per week . Jimmy Steele was Editor of the 'paper when he died on August 9 , 1970 ,at 63 years of age : more than twenty of those 63 years were spent in jail . Steele by name , and Steele by nature - hard to break ......

Around the same time as Jimmy Steele joined the IRA , 1920 , the Black and Tan War was at its height .
Irishmen serving with the British Army in India mutinied in protest at the atrocities being committed in Ireland by the British . The three-day mutiny began on June 27 , 1920 , when 350 Irishmen gave in their arms and refused to soldier for England . The mutiny was confined chiefly to members of 'B' and 'C' Companies , 1st Battalion , Connaught Ranger Regiment , stationed at Wellington Barracks , Jullunder , Punjab, India . The men at Jullunder were led by Private Joseph Hawes and their protest was joined two days later by a detachment of 'C' Company at the hill-station in Solon , under Private James Daly , a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood . (MORE LATER) .....

Like Nixon , I ,too, had a dream last night .....
Henry Kissinger is wanted for questioning on human-rights abuses by courts in France , Spain , Belguim , Argentina and Chile .He supported the genocidal regimes of Pol Pot of Cambodia and General Suharto of Indonesia , and has questions to answer re his knowledge of the assassination of General Rene Shneider , the Commander of the Chilean Army in 1970 . Someone should have asked Dickie to investigate .....

Friday, January 10, 2003

.....Steele figured in two major operations during his brief period of freedom .....
..... in March 1943 , along with Liam Burke and Harry White , he organised and assisted in the escape of 22 IRA Volunteers from Derry Jail and , in April 1943 , he participated in the Broadway Cinema operation on the Falls Road when armed Volunteers took over the cinema and stopped the film while Steele and McAteer went on stage and read a statement from the IRA Army Council . The two men finished off the nights entertainment for the packed cinema by reading the 1916 Proclamation !
By May , Steele was back in jail, this time sentenced to twelve years .When he was released in September 1950 , he was the last Republican prisoner of that era to be freed , leaving Crumlin Road Jail empty of political prisoners for the first time since partition . During the following years , Steele edited two Belfast newspapers - ' Glor Uladh' and ' Resurgent Ulster' , and was the main author of two books published by the National Graves Association- ' Antrim's Patriot Dead' and ' Belfast Patriot Graves'. On December 21st 1957 , following the beginning of the IRA's Border Campaign , internment was once more introduced in the Six Counties and Steele was among the 167 Republicans interned in Crumlin Road Jail - he was released three years later and reported back to the Army . Steele was an outspoken opponent of the policies being pursued by the leadership of the Republican Movement and , in an oration at the re-interment of the remains of Peter Barnes and James McCormick (both executed in England in February 1940 ) at Mullingar , County Westmeath , in July 1969 , he severely criticised the leadership and in particular the running-down of the IRA .
Within six months (January 1970) the inevitable split in the Republican Movement occured...... (MORE LATER).....

" There is no art that one government sooner learns from another than that of draining money from the pockets of the people " -
Adam Smith, ' The Wealth of Nations' , 1776 : Smith lived in late 18th Century Edinburgh , and was shunned completely by society ; he was known to ramble around in a trance , not properly dressed , and was of a very nervous disposition ( ie he 'twitched' constantly) and spoke loudly to himself . His appearance was said to be that like a " worm with legs" . He never married and lived all his life with his mother . While ostracised by the establishment of the day , he certainly had their measure - " People of the same trade seldom meet together even for merriment and diversion but the conversation always ends in a conspiracy against the public " .
A far-sighted man , mentally ahead of those that considered themselves the superior class .....

Thursday, January 09, 2003

........ he joined the IRA .
Arrested twice , in 1923 and 1924 , he was held for several months in Crumlin Road Jail . Following his release later that year and the freeing of the internees in 1925 , he assisted with the re-organising of the IRA and Na Fianna in Belfast . On April 25 , 1936 , while attending an IRA court-martial in connection with the abortive Campbell College raid in December 1935 , at the rooms of the Craobh Rua Club at Crown Entry in Belfast , Steele and most of the Belfast Battalion Staff were arrested . On May 29 , 1936 , Steele was charged with ' treason felony' and , along with twelve others , was found guilty and sentenced to five years penal servitude in Crumlin Road Jail .
Released in May 1940 , he reported back to the Army leadership and continued on as before . While ' on the run' , he married Anna Crawford , a member of Cumann an mBan who came from a staunch Republican family ; unfortunately , married life in freedom was to be short-lived -- the following December he was re-arrested and sentenced to ten years in jail . In January 1943 , along with Patrick Donnelly , Ned Maguire and Hugh McAteer , Steele escaped from Crumlin Road Jail . Despite a reward of £3000 being offered by the Stormont government for his capture and his photograph being displayed throughout the Six Counties , he reported back for active service and was appointed Adjutant of the Northern Command Staff .
Steele figured in two major operations during his brief period of freedom ...... (MORE LATER) .

On September 4 , 2000 , BBC2 television broadcast a programme entitled ' Reputations' which , if memory serves , was a series of interviews with various politicians/'personalties/flavours of the month and used by same as an 'image-building' vehicle . The above-dated episode featured Henry Kissinger , who recalled being roused from his sleep , in the early 1970's , by a phone call from U S President Richard Nixon : Nixon ordered Kissinger to bomb Damascus !
Kissinger , however , probably experienced in such late-night 'phone calls , went back to sleep ....
The following morning , Nixon met Kissinger to discuss various issues but failed to mention the " bomb Damascus" order : and , sensibly , Kissinger said nothing either !
Considering that Nixon was U S President for almost six years , we can but speculate on how many countries ' Tricky Dickie' dreamed about .....

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

.....and was beginning a 20-year penal servitude sentence .
After serving nine years in various English prisons , he was released on condition that he went into exile until the period of his term of imprisonment had expired . He spent most of this time in Paris where he was visited in March 1879 by Charles Stewart Parnell and John Devoy to discuss Fenian business . He returned to Dublin and began writing his reminiscences , which were published in 1896 under the title of ' Recollections of Fenians and Fenianism' . He communicated the essentials of Fenianism to those who came after him and , through his example , his writings and his close association with Republicans during the last years of his life , he influenced a younger generation of rebels who would later lead the Easter Rising of 1916 . John O'Leary died in Dublin on March 16 , 1907 , having insured that the cause would live on .
Another man to be charged by the English with " treason felony" ( an archaic charge originally devised for John Mitchel , the Young Ireland leader , in 1848) was Jimmy Steele , who was born in Belfast on August 8 , 1907 : he lived his life as a soldier , writer , poet and devoted his 63 years in this world to the Republican Movement and the cause of Irish freedom .
At the age of 12 , he joined Fianna Eireann and was active with his young comrades in assisting the Volunteers in his own area , the New Lodge Road , during the Tan War . Following the Treaty of December 1921 , and the split in the Movement , Steele remained true to his republican principles and , in the early 1920's , he joined the IRA . (MORE LATER) .........

According to ' Ireland On Sunday' (March 12 , 2000 , page 34) a British Army GOC directive issued in 1997 stated that the British Army's objectives up to 2001 envisaged maintaining six resident battalions , six RIR battalions , a constant level of force troops and six 'roulement' battalions in the Six Counties - ie approximately ten thousand troops ! It was also stated that 80 cameras, codenamed "GLUTTON" , were installed in public sites , all camouflaged , in the Six North-Eastern Counties , and another 20 cameras were "located privately" ( perhaps on holiday-homes in Donegal ? .... ) .

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

A man born in Tipperary town in July 1830 went on to become one of the most prominent members of the Fenian movement : John O' Leary .
His parents enrolled him in Trinity College , Dublin , to study law , which he did , but he abandoned his studies when he discovered that barristers were required to take an oath of allegiance to the British crown .
At the age of 18 , he took part in the Young Ireland Rising of 1848 in Tipperary , after which he was imprisoned in Clonmel Jail for several weeks . In 1863 , at the age of 33 , John O 'Leary was appointed editor of the newly-established Fenian weekly newspaper ' The Irish People' , with Thomas Clarke Luby and Charles J.Kickham as his co-editors and chief contributors. Two years later , the paper was suppressed ( September 1865) and O'Leary , Luby , Kickham and dozens of other prominent members of the Fenian movement were arrested after being named to the English forces by the informer Pierce Nagle .
By December that same year , O' Leary found himself charged with " treason felony" and was beginning a 20-year penal servitude sentence ...... (MORE LATER) .

On March 18 , 2001 (page 6) ' The Sunday Business Post' wrote that British Army security documents from the 1970's entitled ' Military Appreciation of the Security Situation in Northern Ireland(sic) ' , revealed that special Brit Army units known as ' Q Squads' were set up to "mystify , mislead and destroy the terrorists(sic) " ~ no doubt ' steaknife' and his globetrotting comrades (when they're not in Donegal buying holiday-homes , that is) are knowledgable regarding the action of the ' Q Squads' , as I know their own members are "mystified" as to whats going on !
The objectives of the Provisional organisation have been so reduced that there is now no justification in an armed campaign to obtain them . Or are they going to wage war for a better Stormont ?

Monday, January 06, 2003

.....all was not as it first appeared.....
Fine Gael had indeed polled the Blanchardstown and Castleknock areas of West Dublin : ten-thousand ' Freepost ' cards were sent out to residents of the area , asking do they --
1) support the stadium; or
2) support a scaled-down version of the stadium ; or
3) reject the stadium .
Question 1) prevented the poll being classed as ' loaded ' and allowed Fine Gael to state that the poll was fair . The results (ie " 78.2 per cent of people" against the project) were trumpted far and wide ;
however , it later emerged that , of the 10,000 questionnaires sent out , only 355 (or 3.65 per cent) were returned !!
And of those , thirty-four were spoiled votes , leaving a valid poll of 321 :
13 per cent of which were in favour of the stadium ,
8 per cent favoured a scaled-down version , and
78.2 per cent ( 251 votes) were against the scheme .
Ten-thousand households asked to vote , 321 did so , and the result was propogated as the ' majority decision' !
Once again , as in the Stormont Treaty poll , the facts behind the head-lines are whats important ......

In June 1983 , the then leader of the Official Unionist Party (OUP) , James Molyneaux ( now Lord , or Sir/Madam or something in the Brit establishment) alleged that USSR submarines were landing guns , ammunition and explosives on remote beaches on the Free States Atlantic Coast , for use by Republicans ! He did not cite his source or his evidence for that claim ( see ' The Evening Press' newspaper , Tuesday June 21 , 1983) . In the same month , the bould Jim requested the RUC to find out who was responsible for putting up posters showing him inspecting a band of hooded men , carrying cudgels , done in an orange colour , with the caption-- ' Does Jim Support Separation Now? ' . The RUC found out that the Lisburn branch of the UDA were responsible and that the photo used in the poster was that of Molyneaux inspecting a UDA demonstration against the creation of a ' no-go' area in the Bogside , in 1972 .
I dunno , Jim - seems like a commie plot to me ......

Sunday, January 05, 2003

Bertie Ahern, the not-yet-superseded Fianna Fail leader and Free State Taoiseach , has been in the news here over the last three or four years in connection with the proposed stadium and sports campus which was to be built in Abbotstown , West Dublin , which is apparently not now going ahead . In December 2001 , the Fine Gael branch (they don't have ' Cumann ' - nor do the Tories) in West Dublin decided to do a poll on the views of those living in the Blanchardstown and Castleknock areas of West Dublin , to ascertain whether , like Fine Gael, the residents were of the opinion that the ' Bertiebowl ' should not be built .
The results of that poll , according to Fine Gael , showed that "78.2 per cent of people" were against the project going ahead - if the figures were accurate , and Fine Gael insisted they were , then that would indeed represent the majority point of view .
( and , as I stated here recently in relation to the false interpretation given to the results of the 1998 Stormont Treaty)
...........all was not as it first appeared . (MORE LATER)

In an interview with the 'The Sunday Business Post' newspaper on April 14 last year (page 3) , British nuclear consultant John Large , who was commissioned by the Russian Government to raise the Kursk submarine , was asked his views on the Windscale/Sellafield nuclear plant : he replied ~ " The plant should never have been allowed to get into this condition in the first place and now it's crammed with waste in every nook and cranny . Waste has been stored for decades in containers not designed for it , they have'nt been maintained , and people have just walked away " .
Sellafield seems to be heading for an ' Irish solution ' ~ something bad will have to happen before anything is done .