Wednesday, January 26, 2005

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

....... in December 1925 , the 'A' and 'C' Special Constabulary had 'rebelled' and taken hostages - their own Officers ! They were dealing with (or trying to !) the Stormont 'Minister for Home Affairs' , a 'Sir' Richard Dawson Bates , a solicitor by profession , who was also the then Secretary of the 'Ulster Unionist Council' (1905-1921). He was known as a 'hard-man' .......

'Sir' Richard Dawson Bates 'made his name' (or added to it !) in 1921 , when he ordered the RIC to close-down the Offices of Tyrone County Council as said institution had declared its allegiance to the rebel Dail Eireann (32 County body) !

On 6th December that year (ie 1921) , 'Sir' Bates seen to it that a 'Local Government (Emergency Powers) Bill' was passed into 'law' ; this new 'law' stated - " The Ministry , in the event of any of the local authorities refusing to function or refusing to carry out the duties imposed on them under the Local Government Acts , can dissolve such authority and in its place appoint a Commission to carry on the duties of such authority . "

However , 15 days later (ie on the 21st December 1921) Fermanagh County Council followed the lead set by its counterpart in Tyrone : the following statement was issued by Fermanagh Officials -

- " We , the County Council of Fermanagh , in view of the expressed desire of a large majority of people in this county , do not recognise the partition parliament in Belfast and do hereby direct our Secretary to hold no further communications with either Belfast or British Local Government Departments , and we pledge our allegiance to Dail Eireann . "

Short , sharp , and to the point . And it was (rightly) seen by 'Sir' Richard Dawson Bates as a direct challenge to his 'authority' ; 'Sir' Bates ordered the RIC to ready themselves immediately .......


By Vincent Browne .

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

The reaction of the southern political establishment to the H-Block protest is all the more surprising given the fact that the political prisoners in Portlaoise enjoy virtually all the 'privileges' being demanded by the H-Block men .

The Portlaoise political prisoners wear their own clothes , they enjoy free association among themselves and they are segregated from the other prisoners in the jail . They have special recreational and educational facilities and there is a prison shop where they can purchase food and cigarettes .

They have their own jail organisation - their Officer Commanding negotiates on behalf of the prisoners with the prison authorities and they hold classes and lectures on a wide variety of issues , including political subjects . For instance , one of the classes currently being held is on the origins of the war ie the war in the North of Ireland.......



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 .
[31 of 31].

But NORAID spokesmen have consistently denied that their organisation is providing the funds for IRA weapons ; Martin Galvin is categorical -

- " It matters to me very strongly that when I say this money goes to dependents that it does so - I don't want to deceive people , " he affirmed in 1985 , " but morally I support the IRA's struggle . "

The spokesman for NORAID in San Francisco , Seamus Gibney , told the 'Los Angeles Times' newspaper -

- " We can't prove the money does'nt go for guns . But the British government never offers proof when it says that it does . "

(Tomorrow - ' De Valera and the American connection' - from 'NOW' magazine , 1989 .)