" 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!


Tuesday, January 18, 2005

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

....... in November 1920 , recruitment commenced for the 'Special Constabulary' ; three months later (ie January[23rd] 1921) , the RIC (pro-British 'police force') got a call telling them that a pub in Clones , County Monaghan , was being destroyed by armed men - the RIC , thinking it was an IRA Unit 'closing-down' the pub because it served and sheltered enemy forces , 'tooled-up' and hit the road .......


The RIC pulled-up outside the premises - and opened fire on those inside ! And what a pity that those RIC men were'nt better shots or more heavily armed , or both , for those inside the pub were members of the 'Special Constabulary' , doing what they did best : looting ! One of them was shot dead by the RIC gunfire .

Meanwhile , while the 'Specials' were out looting and the RIC (when not doing the same !) were mistakingly shooting at them , the 'Ulster Volunteer Force' (UVF) , a Loyalist paramilitary organisation , (from which group the 'Specials' came) were still active ; the new man in charge was British Colonel F.H. Crawford , who had played an active part in the Larne gun-running episode in 1914 .

Westminster estimated UVF membership at 20,000 armed men ; its leader , Crawford , is perhaps better known for signing his name in blood on 'Ulster's Solemn League and Covenant' , and was regarded by those who worked with him as 'a fanatic' .

But rather than be alarmed at this 20,000-strong UVF organisation , the Brits were considering using it for their own advantage - the RIC were known to be in favour of such a move .......

(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 .
(2 of 10).

The support on the outside for the H-Block protest was minimal and Provisional Sinn Fein seemed unable to muster even a gesture of solidarity . Certainly they were not prepared to co-operate with individuals or organisations that were not also prepared to support the military struggle .

This has been one of the major issues of division within the Provisional Republican Movement for several years ; some of the die-hard elements don't want to co-operate with people who have reservations about the military campaign , while others are more aware of the need for a broad anti-imperialist front .

It was perhaps Bernadette McAliskey more than anyone else who convinced the die-hards within the Provos to co-operate with individuals and groups on a broad front ; she organised the 'Coalisland Conference' in early 1979 and while the Provos attempted to 'pack' the meeting and block votes on issues , it opened their awareness to the possibilities of a 'broad' campaign .

The 'Relatives Action Committee' included many non-Provo supporters and there had been several clashes within it over the question of support for the military campaign .......

(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 .
(25 of 31).

According to sources close to the U.S. tour itself , the three relatives raised about a quarter of a million dollars - more than the INAC had been able to collect in any year since 1972 , at least according to its official returns .

But the INAC alleges that no more than $200,000 was collected for the whole year , and that the relatives' tour was only a small part of the overall campaign .

The question of how much money was contributed was to have other ramifications when it came to deciding how it should be divided up , and whether or not the INLA and its political wing , the Irish Republican Socialist Party (IRSP) , were entitled to a share .

The INLA's political wing , the IRSP , met with Sinn Fein and demanded a slice of the $250,000 'cake' that the IRSP claimed had been produced by the U.S. tour , but Sinn Fein reportedly told the IRSP that it must address its requests to the INAC .......

(MORE LATER).