Friday, May 21, 2004

PHILIP GREY ; 1827 - 1857 : AN IRISH MILITARY MAN.......

....... Ireland , mid-19th Century - in his early 20's , Philip Grey would have witnessed ' The Irish Confederation ' being established to challenge the Brits regarding their mis-rule in Ireland ; but another plague was stalking the land - ' The Great Hunger ' . A pro status-quo newspaper , ' The Freemans Journal ' , wrote the following Editorial in February 1849 ...

" We ask again - is it not possible to contrive some means of saving the people from this painful and lingering process of death from starvation ? Do we live under a regular or responsible government ? Is there justice or humanity in the world that such things could be , in the middle of the nineteenth century and within twelve hours' reach of the opulence , grandeur and power of a court and capital the first upon the earth ? "

As mentioned in '1169.....' recently , 'The Freemans Journal' newspaper was a 'Castle-Catholic' organ , fully constitutionally-minded , regardless of the suffering of the population . A tangent - In 1841 , the population of Ireland was 8,175,124 ; a (then) normal rate of population increase for a ten-year period should have seen , by 1851 , at least 9,018,799 people on this island : however , the 1851 census recorded only 6,552,385 people 'living' in Ireland .

Emigration and death , caused by 'The Great Hunger' of 1845-1849 took away 2,466,414 Irish people .......



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

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


".......I never got my mug of tea ; in the distance we could see the line of British Army lorries heading towards us - they were full of armed soldiers ......."

" Our men had lined a fence parallel to the road and back a few hundred yards . The lorries stopped on the road opposite them ; the Brits must have seen someone . I saw one of our men stand up just before they stopped . At any rate , they dismounted and deployed as if on field exercise . Rapidly advancing , they reached the middle of the field - our men opened fire , and the enemy fell flat and returned a volley . Then rising , they again rushed forward .

I noticed that they had yet no casualty ; their flanks were extended beyond our line and they greatly outnumbered our men , who began to withdraw and shoot in like manner . The shooting on both sides was equally bad . Now our men had to face the hill and were doing so in the worst possible way - here , my brother intervened and directed them into a cumar , or bed of a stream , which ran slantwise to the enemy and so gave shelter . With a few men he held back the enemy while the others escaped . The British soldiers continued to fire but did not attempt to follow up .

When they reached us , Corney asked why we had not fired over their heads with the Lewis-Gun ; we replied that we could have done little or no damage at that range to the extended enemy , and might have caused confusion among some of our own men coming uphill . Three British soldiers were wounded in this skirmish , and one of our men got a very slight wound in the hand . While the shooting lasted and for some time afterwards , British Army lorries stood a few miles south of us on the Killarney Road .

Had they had the will to do so , they could actually have driven up behind us ......."



' William Quinn was recently jailed for life in Britain having been convicted of the murder of a London policeman on the basis of evidence and an identification which has given rise to considerable controversy . '


(First published in 'MAGILL' magazine , April 1988 , page 18).

Reproduced here in 9 parts.

(8 of 9).

William Quinn's U.S. lawyer , Ms. Carlene Rohan , who was in court for the trial , commented that no American court would have admitted the evidence of identification . Gareth Peirce says it is a deeply worrying case and she has lodged an appeal on the grounds that British Police Constable Blackledge's identification should never have been put to the jury .

The result will be watched closely in the U.S. where a new Extradition Treaty with Britain was passed in 1986 only on the understanding that extraditees would get a fair trial before British courts .......