" 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.)



This blog was listed as one of the 'Finalists' in the '2016 current affairs/politics' category of the Littlewoods Ireland blog awards - but we didn't win the award. Ah well! Thanks to everyone involved for getting us to the final stage of the competition and sure we'll try again next year!

Saturday, November 15, 2003

THE BRITISH ' MILITARY SERVICE (No. 2) BILL 1918 ' ---
IRISHMEN TO FIGHT FOR ENGLAND........



....... the Brits needed more 'cannon-fodder' in France, where they were under attack from a German offensive ; Lloyd George ( British Prime Minister ) looked at Ireland and wanted conscription on the books -- he knew a ' sweetener ' such as 'Home Rule' after the war would assist his endeavours .......


The British offer of 'Home Rule' was nothing of the sort -- a reading of the 'small print' (ie the hidden "terms and conditions") of the ' Home Rule ' Bill exposed it for the fraudulent offer it was --- Lloyd George was willing to offer only local government powers , under the British Crown , to Ireland , with only a small , if any , ' suggestative ' input into issues of law , education and finance . Westminster would still have the final word and British troops would still be on the ground .

On 9th April , 1918 , the ' Military Service (No. 2) Bill 1918 ' was put forward in Westminster by Lloyd George for discussion --- it called for conscription to be extended (ie from Britain) to Ireland ; also up for discussion was the ' Home Rule Bill ' ( which was , in effect , nothing of the sort ). One week later ( on the 16th April , 1918 ) , both Bills passed through Westminster ....... (MORE LATER).




WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


THE LITTLE FIELDS .......


".......human lives , tissue , blood , sweat and time ; but eventually nature yielded . The wasted land began to take shape . The Irish , forced from their fertile farms by the Planters, had started again , on the sides of mountains . But the foreigners noticed -- they wanted more ....... "


" Now , having made homes of a sort from hell's alternative , the tormented people expected that at least their right to the meagre fruits of their labour would not be disputed . But the greedy Sassenach (the British) eye saw a way further to persecute the mere Irish and at the same time to enrich himself .

The rocks were divided into estates . A man's mud-wall cabin and little fields were classified as " holdings " and " farms " , and groups of them became estates " belonging " to a 'landlord' who already lived in the home of some Irishman driven to the rocks . Some there were who never saw " their estates " but lived in England or elsewhere .

They employed agents who collected the 'rents' from the 'tenants' . Thus did the people come to know those hated terms . As well as taking 'rents' from the people , the 'landlord' " owned " their bodies and tried hard for the mastery of their souls . If he wanted a man or men or women , he merely sent a servant intimating the time and place where his or their services were required ." (MORE LATER).



NOT JOLLY-.......

[from ' Fortnight Magazine ', No.303 , February 1992 , page 30]


....... On 17th December , 1991 ( a Tuesday , I believe ) , the then head of Scotland's Yard 'anti-terrorist' branch , Commander George Churchill-Coleman stated --

-- " We are winning the fight against terrorism and they know that jolly well ."

Oh good show , George - game of cricket , anyone ......?




.......-WELL FAIR ---->

[from ' The Sunday Tribune ' , 8th March , 1992 , page 40]


<---- In 1563 , the composer of Britains current National Anthem ' God Save the Queen ' died in Belgium having had to flee England to escape persecution as a Catholic !

There's a lesson in there , Gerry --- Ya just can't please the Brits.......

Friday, November 14, 2003

THE BRITISH ' MILITARY SERVICE (No. 2) BILL 1918 ' ---
IRISHMEN TO FIGHT FOR ENGLAND........


.......in 1914 , the 'Irish National Volunteers' split after one of its leaders , John Redmond , attempted to get the organisation to fight with the British Army in ' World War 1 '.......



Tens of thousands of Irishmen , convinced by John Redmond that the British were on the verge of implementing a true ' Home Rule ' Bill for Ireland , died fighting with the Brits in the trenches of France --- approximately fifty-thousand Irishmen in all .

In late 1917/early 1918 , the Germans launched an offensive against the 'allies' in France ; the Brits needed more soldiers . The then British Prime Minister , Lloyd George, was aware that conscription in Ireland would be vehemently opposed by Irish Republicans ( and was also aware that they would use the issue to garner support ) so he offered what he considered a " sweetener " -- a simultaneous ' Home Rule ' Bill ....... (MORE LATER).




WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


THE LITTLE FIELDS.......


".......the native Irish were forced off the fertile lands by successive plantations by the
British ; they had to live among the rocks , and try to reclaim land from nature on which to survive ....... "


" Food must be had to provide the energy . However , it was certainly done and the green spots started to show against the dour and forbidding background . In time , and following a colossal expenditure of human tissue and with the worst of tools , the little fields and cabin showed signs of the owner's industry . They caught the Planter's eye.....

Surely the man who starts to work on a piece of rejected raw material and makes some useful article from it is entitled to be recognised as the lawful owner of it ? Surely the unfortunate people who had to comply with the order " to Hell or Connaught " were entitled to call the rocks their own ? They had just been forced out of the good land they lawfully owned to make room for the Planters.

To go to Connaught meant to go to the waste places where they could suffer and die at their leisure . The majority did die , but some survived and started to make the little fields . Surely the raw material they used belonged to them ? It was flung at them as an alternative to hell . Certainly it was the next thing to it ." (MORE LATER).




PILLAR.......

[from ' The Irish Times ', Wednesday/Thursday 1st/2nd January , 1992 page 11]


In 1808 , Trinity College in Dublin donated £100 towards the building of Nelsons Pillar , and Arthur Guinness and Sons gave £25 .

The total cost of the Pillar was £6856 , 8 shillings and 3 pence ( including the railings around it ) !

Nelsons Pillar was 'removed' in 1966 , without British 'permission' !




.......OF SOCIETY---->

[from ' The Evening Press ' newspaper , 20th November , 1991 -- a Wednesday , if memory serves -- page 9]


Niccolo Machiavelli was an Italian Statesman and Author during the 'Renaissance Period' .

He wrote his political philosophy in a book entitled ' The Prince ' , in which he argued that rulers should use all the methods they can , even dishonest ones , to strengthen the powers of the State .

This deviousness has given rise to the adjective ' Machiavellian ' .

Everyone in Leinster House must be just too busy to read ould Nic's book in full : they all seem convinced that they have to enrich themselves , and not the State !


( Note to 'Whitewell' - the link you gave me is faulty : can you correct same ? )

Thursday, November 13, 2003

THE BRITISH ' MILITARY SERVICE (No. 2) BILL 1918 ' ---
IRISHMEN TO FIGHT FOR ENGLAND.



August 1914 ; war in Europe (' World War 1 ') . The ' Irish National Volunteers ' ( founded at the end of 1913 , in response to the Loyalist grouping , the UVF which , in 1913 , was under the command of a Sir George Richardson , a retired British General and veteran of many colonial wars ) splits , when one of its leaders , John Redmond , of the ' Irish Parliamentary Party ' ( the so-called ' United Irish League ' or the ' Home Rule Party ' ) urges the ' Volunteers ' to join the British Army and fight with British troops.

The majority of the ' Irish National Volunteers ' stayed with John Redmond , while those opposed to fighting for the Brits went over to Sinn Fein and the ' Irish Republican Brotherhood ' ....... (MORE LATER).



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


THE LITTLE FIELDS.......


".......the earth takes it back - past generations have reclaimed parts of the area and built a stone fence around it ; one quarter of the reclaimed land was covered by that stone fence ......."


" This was due , of course, to the number and depth of stones and boulders that had to be removed from the reclaimed area . A horse and cart could be driven on top of some of these fences . The little fields and big fences were indeed made at the cost of blood and sweat and tears .

What of the people who made the little fields ? The best on earth , I would say . Driven long ago from the fertile inland by successive plantations , they took root among the rocks . It is significant that all bear old Irish names . You will rarely find a Planters name among them . If you do , you will find that it is located on a spot worth occupying .

It is hard to visualize how any human being , no matter how strong and courageous , survived the winters before the first little field was made . One could build a house of some sort in a short time , but to make a field in the wilderness takes time and energy ....... " (MORE LATER).



YOUNG........

[from ' The Sunday Tribune ' , 21st July , 1991 , page 36]


In July 1554 , Mary the 1st of England entered her second 'marriage' , to King Phillip the 2nd of Spain ; her first 'marriage' was at age 3 to the son of the King of France , who was 9 months young at the time !


A 3 year-young child 'marrying' a 9 month-young child ! The kids themselves obviously would'nt have had a clue what was going on , but the parents and other adults should have known better .




.......PEOPLE --->

[from ' AP/RN ' , 12th September , 1991 , page 14]


" If our (party) structures do not suit their needs (ie young people) we must change them accordingly . "

--- so said Larry O'Toole , North-Dublin representative for Provisional Sinn Fein .

In this case , the adults should know better ; if you are willing to " change your structures " to attract new members , by doing so you will lose some of your existing membership !

Only the unprincipled could stay in a party like that .....

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

P. J. SMYTH AND THE TASMANIA ESCAPE , 1853 .......


.......in mid-July , 1853 , John Mitchel , ' Young Ireland' leader , was smuggled on board a ship bound for America by the Irish Rebel , P. J. Smyth ; in late November , 1853 , the ship docked in New York .......


The following year (1854), John Mitchel wrote a book about his five years in prison ; even today , that book , ' Gaol Journal ' , is considered to be one of the best works about prison life to be put on paper .

As a younger man , John Mitchel had wrote , in his ' United Irishman ' newspaper ( suppressed by the British in May , 1848 ) that " Ireland's opportunity would come when England was in difficulty . "

Roll on the hard times , England.......


[END]



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


THE LITTLE FIELDS.......


".......turning due south with the rocky Foherish , we reach Carrigaphooca , where the Foherish joins the Sullane , which comes from the western boundary ......."


" Here we cross the Sullane , a few miles to the west of Macroom , and continuing due south over a dividing ridge reach the Toon river at Toon bridge , the place from whence we started . The circuit of our area is complete . We have enclosed perhaps eighty-square miles , and three parishes -- Inchigeela-Ballingeary , Ballyvourney and Kilnamartyra .

What of the physical features within the enclosure ! They are in keeping with the boundaries . Massive ridges of rock run from west to east through the entire area . There are not twenty acres together in any part of it , in which a rock , large or small , does not show . A twenty-acre field , even with a rock showing , is indeed a rarity . And small level fields are rare enough . The vast majority are inclined at a more or less difficult angle to the horizontal .

All have been reclaimed from the rock , the marsh , the bog , the heather , the brake , and , worst of all , from the stony and eroded hillside . The quality of the soil is not good , even in the best pockets . I have seen little fields , reclaimed by past generations , where the area under the stone fence around one field exceeded one quarter of the area of the field itself ....... " (MORE LATER).




TWO FINGERS.......

[from ' The Observer ' newspaper , 16th June , 1991 , page 19]


In a profile of Boris Yeltsin by William Millinship , it was stated that , as a schoolboy during the war , the young Boris broke into a church which was being used as an ammunition store and stole a couple of hand-grenades .

Wondering how exactly they worked , the bould Boris tackeled one of them with a hammer -- the resulting explosion blew two fingers off his left hand !

On 19th February , 1991 , Boris was being interviewed on television when , apparently , out of the blue , he called for Gorbachov's resignation -- weeks later , when he was on television again , he departed from the text of a prepared speech and made a declaration of war on the country's leadership !

...way to go , Boris -- get into their camp and then piss all over them ....


.......TO THE VOTERS --->

[from ' Hot Press ' magazine , Volume 15 , No. 12 , 27th June , 1991 , page 37]


The late Brian Lenihan ( Fianna Fail ) , Charlie Haughey's right-hand man at the time , was interviewed and questioned about Fianna Fail's decision ( now that they were in power again ) to work the 1985 Hillsborough Treaty -- in the run-up to the election , Fianna Fail had described that Treaty as " unconstitutional , immoral and unworkable . "

The Brian fella stated --- " We decided FORGET (his emphasis) the arguments about the rights and wrongs we'd engaged in while in opposition . Here was a Treaty between two States , in place , and we were intent on working it to the maximum extent . "

Told ya ! Breaking election promises , pledges and guarantees is nothing new for Fianna Fail ; its how they make their living .

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

P.J. SMYTH AND THE TASMANIA ESCAPE , 1853.......



.......the two men , P J Smyth and John Mitchel , met together as arranged and discussed how Mitchel could safely escape from the British prison colony .......



John Mitchel requested a meeting with the prison guv'nor and , in early June , 1853, told him that he was no longer willing to give his word that he would not , in future , attempt to escape . However , at his request , he was allowed out of the prison once more , in mid-July , 1853, and was then spirited away by P J Smyth and local supporters .

John Mitchel was then taken to the docks area where a ship was preparing for a voyage to America . He was smuggled on board for the trip and , in late November , 1853 , he arrived in New York ........ (MORE LATER).




WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


THE LITTLE FIELDS.......


" .......we travel in a Northern direction until we reach the Coom Road , then North by East , which takes us to the Cork-Kerry border ....... "



" Again we have completed ten miles , the extent of our western boundary . It is a mountain wall , heather-covered in places , barren enough in the remainder . Some feeding for small mountain sheep . Some peat bogs . Cover for grouse now , it was once the home of the eagle . From heights of over a thousand feet one may look down to the east and see nearly all our territory spread before him . The two principal rivers , the Lee and the Sullane , form with their valleys the whole of the ground we wish to cover .

Moving due east along the ridge of the Derrynasaggart mountains , we follow the mountain road between Ballyvourney and Millstreet for a few miles as far as the source of the Foherish . Three further miles eastward and we have completed our northern boundary , roughly eight miles . Turning due south with the rocky Foherish we reach Carrigaphooca where the Foherish joins the Sullane which comes from the western boundary . " (MORE LATER).




HOME.......


Liam Mellows predicted in the Treaty Debate on 4th January , 1922 ---


--- " Men will get into positions , men will hold power , and men who get into positions and hold power will desire to remain undisturbed and will not want to be removed . "

The readers of this column who live in the occupied Six Counties will hopefully remember the words of Liam Mellows before going out to cast their vote later this month .

You'll be voting for those already comfortably ensconced in the system or those hoping to end up there .




.......TRUTHS ---->


[from ' The Guardian ' , London , 26th November , 1998]



<---- " Transforming the European Union into a single state with one army , one constitution and one foreign policy is the critical challenge of the age . "


--- so said Joschka Fischer , German Foreign Minister at the time .

More power for the 'suits' ; more reason for the rest of us to worry .......

Monday, November 10, 2003

P. J. SMYTH AND THE TASMANIA ESCAPE , 1853 .......


......in 1853 , P.J. Smyth , an Irish rebel , arrived , as planned , in Australia ; he was there to rescue John Mitchel , the Young Ireland leader , who was in a prison colony there.......



The two men met , as arranged , in a hotel outside the town of Hobart . They had not seen each other since 1848 -- five years -- . In his book ' GAOL JOURNAL ' , John Mitchel described that first meeting ---

--- John Mitchel wrote of how he approached a man outside the hotel and asked him was his name Smyth ; " He ( Smyth ) turned upon me suddenly ; clearly he thought it was a detective , thought that he had been traced all the way to the very spot where he was to meet us - that he was a prisoner and all was over . I hastened to undeceive him , for he looked strongly tempted to shoot me and bolt . "

The two men talked of how Mitchel could escape from Australia ; his people in New York had supplied P.J. Smyth with a list of 'Young Ireland ' sympathisers in that part of Australia who were willing and able to assist in John Mitchel's escape , and a plan was devised ....... ( MORE LATER ).



WHERE MOUNTAINY MEN HAVE SOWN :

war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.



THE LITTLE FIELDS.......


".......ten miles from Toon Bridge -- all of it rugged scenery , one lake and two villages , set-in between the rocks , marshes and bogs ......."



" We will turn North and climb to Gougane Barra where rises the Lee . Once the abode of a saint (Finbarr) , it is well known for its beauty , the little lake and island set in a corridor of towering and barren rocks .

I would say that it is the general headquarters for all the rocks in that district . To traverse the western boundary of our area we must now go on foot across the Derrynasaggart mountain , travelling north by east until we reach the first east-west road-crossing at Lackabawn .

Again , roughly north until we meet the next road at Coom (the Cork-Kenmare road) and finally north by east again to meet the Cork-Killarney road at the Cork-Kerry border ......." ( MORE LATER ).



(minority)SHOOT FIRST .......

[from ' The Sunday Tribune, ' 9th June , 1991 , page 6]


In 1975 , a British soldier killed a County Tyrone farmer , Patrick McElhone , as he ran away from a military patrol . The Brit was charged with murder but was acquitted -- the 'trial' Judge said that although Patrick McElhone was an innocent person , the soldier had reason to believe he was a fleeing terrorist and , because of the " war or quasi-war situation " in the Six Counties , the British soldier was justified in shooting him !

The British Law Lords stated -- " If he ( McElhone) got away (he) was likely sooner or later to participate in acts of violence . "

.....and that's the way the Brits have always operated in Ireland --- " Well , Mick , we know you were up to something . Or you will be eventually ......"




......(report).......AND ASK QUESTIONS LATER --->

[from ' The Irish Echo ' American newspaper , 12th-18th June , 1991 , page 2]


<--- ' Amnesty International ' recently released a six-hundred-and-seventy-four page document reporting on British human rights abuses in the Six Counties , which condemned Britain for same .

The John Major Conservative Government responded by stating that it was " necessary in war to have secrecy . " Tory backbencher Ivor Stanbrook M P declared --- " Britain is a democracy at war with bloodthirsty terrorists and it is our duty to protect British citizens . " ( QUESTION - did Stanbrook not recognise the so-called " bloodthirsty terrorists " as " British citizens " as well ?)

Stanbrook continued --- " We are at war and that's why we use secret tribunals and inquiries . Why should we give our enemies free information ? We have high standards , a record that is better than any other in the world . "

..... Brits with " high standards " regarding Ireland ? See the above ' Law Lords ' quote , Ivor , and tell me if you look like Tom Cruise .......

Sunday, November 09, 2003

GREAT BALLAD-SESSION !



(...or so I'm told - don't remember an awful lot about it : ...think someone spiked my tenth pint ! )

We're still out at the Ard Fheis --- but its not all 'fun and games' .

Serious issues , good debates and meeting people that I normally try to avoid : the Special Branch .

Back tomorrow.......