Thursday, September 23, 2004

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

.......when he was 'released' from Strangeways Prison in Manchester by the IRA on 20th October 1919 , Piaras Beaslai took over again as Editor of 'An tOglach' , and was also appointed as 'Director of Publicity' for the IRA .......

Under his stewardship , that Irish Republican newspaper which , since its inception in August 1918 had been published twice monthly , became a weekly publication . Each issue contained a leading article , Editorial notes and a 'War News' column , highlighting the activities carried out since its last issue .

It was a useful propaganda tool and a morale booster for all IRA Units throughout the island . The 'An tOglach' newspaper was published , at first, twice a month and then weekly , between August (15th) 1918 and July 1921 , when it was deemed, by the powers that were , that its job was done ; negotiations between the Irish Republicans and Westminster were underway .

Those negotiations were to lead to the 'Treaty of Surrender' being signed ; a 'Truce' between both sides was signed on 11th July 1921 and , on 6th December 1921 , at ten minutes past two in the morning , by signing the British document, the 'Free State' came into being - as did its minders (tenants?) , the Free Staters .

However , as he walked through the foggy streets of London having signed the 'Treaty' , Michael Collins had an inkling of what was to come.......



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

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.

THE TRUCE.......

".......I was the only one at the car when an armed British Auxie approached ; he looked at me , then at the Model T. Ford - " That car belongs to us ...." he said ......."

" " Belonged , would be more correct , " I said . " It will be ours again ," came his reply . " That depends on your ability to take it , " I answered . The Auxie looked me up and down ; his hands rested on his hips, the palms outwards . I watched him carefully - his guns were quite convenient in open holsters , and it would take him little time to get them out . But I had the advantage , for mine were already in my hands .

Suddenly he raised his right hand and beckoned - three more Auxiliaries crossed the street towards us : I waited until they came to him . They looked at him questioningly , and he started to explain what had been said between us . With this advantage I turned my head and shoulders quickly - my brother Pat was just coming out of a doorway , and I beckoned to him with my head ; he came quickly , the others behind him .

" What's this about ? " Pat asked , as he drew up in line with me . " That fellow " , I said , indicating the elite gunman , " wants the car back . " The four British Auxies now faced the four IRA men , ten feet apart . They heard Pat's question to me , and my reply . " Oh , well , " said Pat , generously , " you are welcome to it , " but then added " ...if you can take it . "

" Well , chaps , " said the first Auxie , loosening up , " will you stand by me ? " His colleagues looked at each other ......."


By Frank Doherty .

First published in ' New Hibernia ' magazine , May 1987 , pages 7 , 8 and 9 .
Re-produced here in 11 parts .
(8 of 11.)

The Littlejohn brothers who bombed and robbed in the 'Irish Republic' ('1169 ...' comment - the Irish Republic has been declared but not yet established ; the author is referring to the Free State) in 1971 and 1972 had Maurice Oldfield as their ultimate boss . It was not their idea but his that Jack Lynch's Government (ie the then Fianna Fail FS Administration) should be pressurised into introducing internment by a series of phoney IRA incidents .

Oldfield was in charge also of the spying in Garda HQ which led to the Crinnion/Wyman Case , and was probably the man who arranged the deal that allowed both of them to walk free . While he had to complete with Martin Furnival Jones , the Director General of the British Security Services (MI5) until 1972 , and his successor , Michael Hanley , until 1978 , Maurice Oldfield still managed to retain his key position as ' Senior Advisor on Irish Affairs '.

In Whitehall , 'Irish Affairs' were regarded as largely a 'security matter.......'