" 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.)



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, November 04, 2004

IRELAND , JANUARY 15th , 1920 : ELECTIONS .......

....... in September 1914 , the 'Irish Volunteers' split - the majority (about 160,000 men) agreed with their leader John Redmond that they should assist the Brits in the war with Germany , while about 12,000 men dis-agreed and left with Eoin MacNeill and other figures in the leadership .......

The British had their hands full with 'World War One' and , in an unusually astute decision , decided to turn a blind eye to the marches and parades being carried out by those that had left with Eoin MacNeill , a group now known as the 'Irish Volunteers / Sinn Fein Volunteers' ; as the then British Chief Secretary for Ireland , Augustine Birrell , put it -

- " To proclaim the Irish Volunteers as an illegal body and put them down by force wherever they appear would , in my opinion , be a reckless and foolish act and would promote disloyalty to a prodigious extent . " Damned if they do (because the population would resent them even more for doing so) and damned if they did'nt (as it gave the Rebels 'breathing space') . Even when the Brits are playing it 'smart' , they are'nt !

But Westminster did attempt to use the talk , the threat and the issue of conscription to their own advantage - they claimed that was the reason why the 1918 General Election returned the results it did ie 'Conscription Act' introduced in April 1918 , General Election held in December 1918 . That 1918 Election was the first 'General Election' in the 'United Kingdom' since 1910 , and new 'elements' had been added - the electoral register , for instance , was three times larger than it had been in 1910 , and included , for the first time , women over thirty and all men over twenty-one .

The Sinn Fein victory was overwhelming ; nearly three-quarters of all the Irish seats (in Westminster) were now in Nationalist / Republican hands .......

(MORE LATER).


Why We Ended The Hunger-Strike .
The full text of the H-Block Blanket Men's statement announcing the end of the 1981 Hunger-Strike .

First published in 'IRIS' magazine , Volume 1 , Number 2, November 1981 , pages 23 , 24 , 25 and 26 .
Re-published here in 18 parts .
(1 of 18).

" We , the protesting Republican prisoners in the H-Blocks , being faced with the reality of sustained family intervention , are forced by this circumstance , over which we have little control at the moment , to end the hunger-strike .

After four years of continual protest , and after the failure of the Cardinal O'Fiaich / Humphrey Atkins talks , and having exhausted all other means of protest to bring about a settlement , we embarked on hunger-strike on October 27th , 1980 .

That hunger-strike ended on December 18th , 1980 , when the British Government intimated to the hunger-strikers that they would implement a workable and just solution which was forwarded to the hunger-strikers on 18th December 1980 .

In the course of the immediate post - hunger-strike period it became increasingly clear that the British Government had reneged on their commitment to implement that solution and so we were back in a pre- hunger-strike predicament and thus forced to go back on hunger-strike ....... "

(MORE LATER).


ONE THAT GOT AWAY .......
Donegal IRA man , Patrick McIntyre - wanted by the RUC and by Gardai - was released by the High Court last month when his lawyers convinced the Court that he was not properly arrested and held by the Gardai . Tommie Gorman details McIntyre's story of two escapes and meets him 'on the run' .
From ' Magill ' magazine , June 1987 , pages 24 , 25 , 26 , 28 and 29 .
Re-produced here in 13 parts .
(4 of 13).

Re-captured within two days after the September 1983 jail-break , Patrick McIntyre had to wait three years and three months to get a second chance ; with less than six months of his original sentence left , he was due three days ' rehabilitation parole ' as Christmas 1986 approached . The prison authorities opposed his release because the trial of the Maze escapers was pending , but McIntyre defeated their objections before the courts .

The Provisionals approved his absconding - they believed the recently introduced ' rehabilitation ' gimmick was geared to cause divisions in their structures within the prisons . By December 20th , 1986 , the RUC were looking for him but he was over the border , in Donegal , getting his hair timted !

On the twisty main road between Killybegs and Kilcar , in West Donegal , there is a white flat-roofed dwelling in the townland of Cashlings ; some Gardai consider it ' a safe house ' . Raymond 'The Rooster' McLaughlin , a well-known IRA activist , was suspected of stopping off there not long before he drowned , accidentally , in a pool , in County Clare , in 1985 . Shortly after eight o'clock on the morning of 6th January 1987 , Aiden Murray and other armed Detectives raided the house .......

(MORE LATER).