Sunday, June 20, 2004

JOHN SADLEIR and WILLIAM KEOGH - 19th Century Irish Turncoats .......

.......Two of the top 'Independent Irish Party' MP's , John Sadleir and William Keogh , 'jumped ship' from the 'IIP' to the British 'Whigs' , for personal gain : a 'top job' each in a British Administration - history repeats ...

As 'Lord of The (British) Treasury ' , John Sadleir (ex- 'IIP' MP) aspired to a lifestyle which he no doubt considered to be his of right - he was , after all , a British Minister and he also owned , by now , ( No - not a holiday-home in Donegal !) a community-type Bank/Financial House , in Ireland - the 'Tipperary Joint-Stock Bank' : however , such was his taste for the fine life and his desire to 'keep in' with his new 'friends' , when his Bank was found to be shy by over one million pounds the shame was too much for him - he killed himself in 1856 .

However , his old buddy , the British Solicitor-General for Ireland , William Keogh (ex-'IIP' MP) , somehow managed to 'soldier-on' and was asked to perform another task for his British pay-masters .......



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

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

1921 - The Big Round-Up.......

".......I was 'dug-in' on the Rahoona Mountains , covered by heather ; then the procession of enemy forces came into view below me - at least ten-thousand strong , all armed , and complete with field equipment . An impressive display ......."

" Beside the regular British Army troops and their gear , the Auxiliaries with their Crossleys gave me the impression that , apart from the cat , very few had been left to mind the house ... Having seen this methodical and massive movement of British military force , from east to west , I was left in no doubt about its objective - it would be some point beyond the village of Ballyvourney to the west or north of it . In fact , it proved to be the valley of Claodach at the foot of the Paps Mountain .

The valley of Claodach is a deep pocket between the hills , four miles to the north-west of Ballyvourney ; from a military point of view it was a veritable cul-de-sac , with only one long winding road leading into it from the west at that time . This would , in the ordinary way , have been an advantage , since enemy lorries could not converge on the glen . But the incursion of infantry from all sides was made feasible by the unusually fine weather . So , early on a Monday morning , a ring of steel was closed around Claodach ; ten-thousand armed men made up that circle which , as the day wore on , gradually contracted .

It was a real 'day out' for the British , a day on the moors ; every man , young or old , was shot at on sight ; an old man at the county border , near the Killarney Road , was gazing upwards at an aeroplane when a volley was fired at him . A bullet grazed his throat , but missed the vital arteries ; the poor harmless old man never dreamt that the 'sportsmen' were out for Irish blood that day . From early morning until late afternoon the firing went on - two young men were killed early in the day on a hilltop north of the Claodach Valley ; evidently they had moved away from the northern contracting arc of the 'ring of steel' , expecting to find safety somewhere to the south .

Like grouse or other game , however , they were 'flushed out' of their native heather to provide targets for the British warriors ; they killed them , and then disputed among themselves as to who were the successful marksmen . Their shooting would , no doubt , have been far less accurate had the poor young lads had any kind of a firearm with which to return even an occasional shot ..."


ETHIOPIA - A Brief History .......

(First published in 'HOT PRESS' Magazine , 6th May 1988 , Volume 12 , No. 8 , page 28).

Re-produced here in 10 parts .

[10 of 10].

Lauded as Africa's statesman , Haile Selassie witnessed the location of the Organisation of African Unity at Addis Ababa in 1963 as a further tribute to Ethiopia's endurance during the colonial era . But his rule became increasingly devoted to its own self-perpetuation ; abroad , he posed as a sage and gradual moderniser but , in fact , imperial Ethiopia was archaic .

Between 1963 and 1973 , only 4.2 per cent of state expenditure went to agriculture in this overwhelmingly rural country ; in 1974 , 91 per cent of the population was illiterate - the 'peasantry' were subject to a grinding feudal system whereby 75 per cent of their meagre incomes went in taxes to the Emperor and his aristocratic associates , who monopolised land ownership .

With 'peasant' initiative punished , there was no incentive to improve agricultural production .

[END of 'ETHIOPIA - A Brief History .......'].
(Tomorrow - EXTRADITING CITIZEN KANE ; from 1989 .)