" 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 - we made it to the finalists page last year but never got to the stage :- ( 'cause not enough of ye feckers out there voted for us! So we're gonna give ya a second chance - the blog awards this year will be held on Thursday, October 5th (2017) in The Academy, Middle Abbey Street, in Dublin city centre, and we would appreciate if you could keep an eye here and give us a vote when ya can. Or else we'll get our 'Junior' to put up a pay wall and then ye will be sorry...!


Monday, January 17, 2005

THE BOUNDARY COMMISSION , 1921-1925 .......
A British 'sleight-of-hand' which caused a mutiny within British forces in Ireland.......

....... Joe Devlin was amongst those who objected to a Loyalist paramilitary organisation being armed by Westminster (the UVF) and being called a ' police force ' ; Devlin was a busy man - as well as other political jobs , he acted as General Secretary for the United Irish League (UIL)/Home Rule Party , from 1904 to 1920 .......


At 34 years of age , Joe Devlin served as the 'National President' of the Ancient Order of Hibernians , a position he held for 29 years (!) [until he died in 1934] , during which time he forged links between the Ancient Order of Hibernians and the United Irish League .

He first took a seat in Stormont in 1921 (at 50 years of age) [and stayed there until 1934] ; in 1928 (at 57 years of age) he founded , and Chaired , the 'National League of the North ' . Incidentally , he was not related to Bernadette Devlin or Paddy Devlin : end of that Joe Devlin 'tangent' !

Back to basics : in November 1920 , in Belfast , recruitment for the 'Specials' commenced ; the 'calibre' of these 'Specials' can be accurately gauged from an incident on 23rd January 1921 , when the RIC were called-out to investigate a claim that a pub in Clones , County Monaghan , was being destroyed by armed men .

Thinking it was an IRA Unit 'closing down' a pub because it served and sheltered enemy forces , the RIC 'tooled-up' and hit the road .......

(MORE LATER).


THE POLITICS OF H-BLOCK .
By Vincent Browne .

From 'MAGILL' magazine , December 1980 , pages 26 and 27 .
Re-published here in 10 parts .
(1 of 10).

The H-Block issue has caused divisions in Irish society deeper than any exposed during the last decade of troubles in the North . Not alone are the unionist and nationalist communities now sharply polarised again , but there has arisen the spectre of a deep and hostile division between the nationalist community in the North and the vast majority of the people of southern Ireland .

The degree of support for H-Block protestors in the Catholic areas of the North has witnessed no parallel , certainly not since the Civil Rights demonstrations of the late 1960's . The Roman Catholic community's alienation from the Provisional IRA was thought to be almost complete following a succession of atrocities , culminating in the La Mons disaster , and the very obvious support given to the 'Peace People' in 1976 .

Yet it was during the 'Peace Peoples' most notable triumphs on the streets of the Falls and Shankill that the H-Block issue started to germinate .

It was that summer that young Kieran Nugent started on his blanket protest , which seemed doomed to failure and a wall of public indifference .......

(MORE LATER).


NORAID'S UNTOLD MILLIONS .......

Irish-Americans have long had complex and contradictory relations with Ireland and the 'Irish Question' . On Saint Patrick's Day , all the ambiguities are apparent .
This year (ie 1987) , on Saint Patrick's Day , the latest book by Irish writer , Jack Holland was published in New York , exploring the tangled web of links between Irish-Americans and the Irish in Ireland , the IRA and the Irish government .

' The American Connection ' describes the activities of leading Irish-American politicians , of romanticising writers and of gun-runners .
In this edited extract , the author tells how Noraid was set up and how it has resisted pressures to disclose all the sources and uses of its funds .
First published in 'MAGILL' magazine , April 1987 .
Re-published here in 31 parts .
(24 of 31).

Objections were raised to Liz O'Hara's presence on the tour ; could'nt someone with more pure 'republican' connections be found ? Ironically , at the same time that some of NORAID's leaders were expressing these objections , ' The Irish People ' newspaper was praising Patsy O'Hara as a martyr .

In the end , Malachy McCreesh and Bobby Sands' brother , Sean , refused to go on the U.S. tour unless Liz O'Hara accompanied them - whatever INAC's objections were , they had to be put aside in the interests of solidarity with the hunger strikers .

The vexing question of exactly how much cash was raised on that tour was made even more complex than usual with NORAID at this time : because it was in dispute with the U.S. Justice Department over the registration issue , the Committee was refusing to file its six-monthly financial returns . The last period for which those figures were available before 1984 , when the dispute was resolved , was January-July 1981 .

For this period , NORAID disclosed that it raised $92,800 , a startingly small sum considering the huge swell of support it was then getting .......

(MORE LATER).