Tuesday, November 09, 2004

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

....... after the 1918 Election , Sinn Fein MP's refused to take their seats in Westminster (or any financial gain from same) ...

Instead , they convened the first meeting of Dail Eireann (a 32-County body) in Dublin's Mansion House on 21st January 1919 ; all those elected in Ireland were invited to attend same but the Unionist MP's refused , as did those elected under the banner of a so-called 'United Irish League' (UIL) - the parliamentary nationalists ( ie John Redmond's men ) .

In the Mansion House that day , 37 of the 73 Sinn Fein TD's (referred to as 'MP's' in Westminster) made a 'Declaration of Independence' (Note : the remaining 36 Sinn Fein TD's were still in British jails) -

- " We , the elected representatives of the ancient Irish people in National Parliament assembled , do , in the name of the Irish nation , ratify the establishment of the Irish Republic and pledge ourselves and our people to make this declaration effective by every means at our command...

We ordain that the elected representatives of the Irish people alone have power to make laws binding on the people of Ireland and that the Irish Parliament is the only parliament to which that people will give its allegiance . We solemnly declare foreign government in Ireland to be an invasion of our national right which we will never tolerate and we demand the evacuation of our country by the English garrison ..."

Cathal Brugha was elected as 'Acting President' in place of Eamonn de Valera who was still in a British prison .......


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 .
(4 of 18).

" On June 11th , 1981 , nine Irish Republican prisoners stood in the Southern general election ; of these , Paddy Agnew topped the poll in Louth , and Kieran Doherty was elected for the Cavan/Monaghan constituency . In the other seven areas the prisoners polled exceedingly well considering the lack of organisation and the short period of time there was to organise the election campaign .

The ordinary people of the South cast their votes in thousands : in Cavan/Monaghan , Kieran Doherty polled first preference 9,121 (15 per cent) ; Paddy Agnew , Louth , 8,368 (18 per cent) ; Joe McDonnell , Sligo/Leitrim , 5,634 ; Martin Hurson , Longford/Westmeath , 4,573 (10 per cent) ; Sean McKenna , Kerry North , 3,860 ; Kevin Lynch , Waterford , 3,337 ; Tony O'Hara , Dublin West , 3,034 ; Mairead Farrell , Cork North Central , 2,751 , and Tom McAllister , Clare , 2,120 .

On July 4th , 1981 , we issued a major policy statement outlining our five demands , and emphasising the fact that we wanted our five demands to be available for all prisoners (rejecting an assertion to the contrary , made by the British , which we regarded as nonsense and a red herring to justify the barbarity of the British government ) .

This statement was almost universally accepted as 'remarkably conciliatory' . "


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 .
(7 of 13).

About one hundred Sinn Fein protestors shouted abuse outside the court as Patrick McIntyre was escorted from a prison vehicle ; in the melee , nobody noticed three plainclothes detectives sliding another man past - RUC member Robert Herron . He was needed to identify Patrick McIntyre .

As he rose to speak , Sinn Fein members immediately headed for the exits but gardai told them the doors would have to be kept closed . Then , his identity unknown to those outside , the RUC man was discreetly and safely brought past the crowds before the hearing ended . Chief Superintendent Patrick Murphy was in the witness box - a stranger to the area , he had been transferred from Limerick to Letterkenny , in Donegal , on promotion the previous October .

Murphy gave evidence of signing the Section 30 Extension Order for a second 24 hour period . State Solicitor Ciaran McLoughlin asked him nothing further . District Justice McMenamin had no questions , and Defence Counsel Patrick Gageby kept quiet .......