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"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!

Thursday, September 02, 2004

'TAN WAR' REPUBLICAN NEWSPAPER - 'An tOglach' , 1918-1921.......

.......the 'Gaelic Press' , which printed the 'An tOglach' Irish Republican newspaper had , in 1916 , printed 'The Kerryman' newspaper , which had been declared an " illegal publication " by the Brits . One of the train drivers who transported the " illegal" 'The Kerryman' newspaper , a Mr. 'Bolger' O'Donoghue , told the following story re one such trip .......

'Bolger' was driving the train , as usual, when what he described as a " premonition " made him stop and unload the " illegal " newspapers at a small station just outside of Tralee . Having done so , the train carried on and , minutes later , as they steamed into Tralee Station , they were boarded by search parties from the British Army and the RIC .

The train driver , 'Bolger' O'Donoghue , and his helper (who were known on the trains as 'firemen') were ordered to unload the coal (under which the 'illegal' newspapers had been hidden) which they refused to do , so the British soldiers ordered the RIC to do it - which , reluctantly , they did . It was a dirty job which , once finished , yielded no result . Both search parties left the train , with the RIC men a bit the worst for wear !

The 'dumped' copies of 'The Kerryman' newspaper had by then been recovered and distributed in the usual fashion . The episode was raised in a local pub that same night .......



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

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


" ....... Dannie Casey's brother , Jeremiah , had been shot dead by the British Auxiliaries , and Dannie was himself a prisoner in Macroom Castle ; he was under interrogation , and felt he would not leave the Castle alive ......."

" The questions circled like a point on a roulette ; all were based on the assumption that Dannie was a member of the IRA and that he had that morning been on duty on the hill . Dannie Casey replied that he had been on the hill on his own business , looking after his sheep . It was evident that the Auxies sought to weary him by incessant questioning until , through mental and physical exhaustion , he should capitulate . But they failed to shake him .

It is likely that , were it not for a diversion , Dannie would not have got off so easily ; a prisoner was brought in , a young man on whose farm an old rusty gun had been discovered . On him , like mad dogs, the Auxies now turned their fury . Peeping through a chink in a door , Dannie saw and heard most of the horror . The British 'authorities' announced another 'official' execution - it was a foul and midnight murder .

Dannie Casey was released on the following day . Just in time to attend his brother's funeral . "

[END of ' SHOOTINGS.....'].
(Tomorrow - 'RAIDS' .)



First published in ' Dublin Diary ' magazine , Vol. 1 , No. 3 , May 1989 , page 21 .
Re-published here in six parts .
(5 of 6).

One British Army military base in Belfast which had to be abandoned was surrounded on three sides by rows of houses and on the fourth by a cemetary . Thus , if anyone was rash enough to attack by , say, rocket fire , then a miscalculation would send the missile to civilian houses or the cemetary . In either case , 'bonus points' for the British Army !

If the rocket hit its target that was just too bad , but the risks to civilian lives could be stressed nevertheless . In time the base was abandoned because , in spite of the nearness of civilians (both alive and dead!) the aim of the attackers was being tried out too often with disastrous effect .

All this means that while the role of an army as a 'peacekeeping force' has to be questioned at the highest political level - is not a 'military peace-keeping force' a contradiction in terms ? - the role of an army as that of " protecting citizens " has to be questioned at ground level as well .......