Monday, April 18, 2005

From the moment a new recruit enters the Irish Republican Army he or she undergoes a rigorous and intensive training to assess the individual Volunteer's level of commitment , general ability and particular aptitudes . After the initial recruitment lectures , this period includes training in personal security and anti-interrogation , basic intelligence work , political education - and of course training in the use of weapons . In this supplied article , a Volunteer in the IRA's Belfast Brigade describes his experience of taking part in an IRA training camp .
From 'IRIS' magazine , November 1983 , pages 39 , 40 , 41 , 42, 43 , 44 and 45 . 1...

We are shown how to clean our guns ; on this occasion it's as well we're only training , as most of us are'nt that sure what we're doing . Come to think of it , only one of us seems to know what exactly most of the weapons are , and maybe even he's bluffing it a bit ...

Hopefully we will make up for the ignorance over the next few days ; it is now 2am and we get a cup of tea (at last !) and make tired conversation with the IRA T/O's for a while in the kitchen , before four of us head for sleeping bags and the floor , leaving two to start the all-night 'staggered watch' in the kitchen .

I'm shaken/kicked awake around 5am to start my three house of 'stag' - propped up in a kitchen chair with a copy of 'Small Arms Of The World' : its the only comfortable part of the night ...

[END of 'Day 1'].
(Tomorrow - 'Day 2').

STONE COLD .......
Michael Stone is infamous for his attack on a republican funeral at Belfast's Milltown cemetery . By his own count , he has murdered four men and had a hand in the deaths of six others . He says his war is over - but he still expects to meet a violent end .
By Andrew Lynch .
First published in 'MAGILL' magazine , July 2003 , pages 34, 36 , and 38 .
Re-published here in 13 parts .
(8 of 13).

It was UDA Commander Tommy Herron who drove Michael Stone and four of his friends out to a local quarry and allowed them to play for half-an-hour with his pet Alsatian . Then he presented the teenagers with a .22 calibre pistol and told them to kill the dog as it pranced at their feet .

As Stone's friends professed themselves unable to do it , young Michael Stone calmly took the gun , shouted at the dog to distract it and shot it in the back of the head . The UDA had found its 'natural born killer ' .

" I was basically turned into a one-man murder-machine , " Stone says , " they taught me to smear cartridges with mercury or garlic puree , because they get into the bloodstream and cause blood poisoning within seconds . They showed me how to strangle someone with the brake cable of a pushbike . They pointed out the exact spot on the neck to kill a man by scrambling their brain . Aye , it was a great training ....... "


From 'The United Irishman' newspaper , Aibrean [April] 1957 , page 5.
(IML. IX. UIMHIR 4 - price Tri Pingin [Three Pennies].
Thanks to my late friends Christy and Theresa L. for giving me this 48-year-old newspaper ; this thread published in memory of those two old Fenians ! - John.

Common to all who disagree with Sinn Fein and who are opposed to our policy is an appalling ignorance of what our policy really is . At least one Irish language 'enthusiast' , for instance , cuts the ground from under us in the most devastating English and asserts - again in the best Queen's English - that he knows some children " ... who will not be taught to admire English . "

What this nation needs is educated children , and eventually educated men and women and not a colony of illiterates in two languages . Eventually , if the Irish nation is wise and prudent , Gaelic will become the everyday spoken language in this country . To attain to that desirable end , straight hard thinking will have to be done by the whole Irish people . Pious sentiments and mouthy phrases won't cure the ills that afflict us .

The majority of our people speak English fairly fluently and are very proud of the knowledge ; a small percentage of our people on the Western Seaboard speak Gaelic fluently and are rather ashamed of it and do their utmost to ensure that their children have at least a working knowledge of English to carry them through the world when they go off 'navvying' or 'tatty-hoking' .

The Irish nation has got to reverse that attitude to the language and at the outset , out of sheer necessity , do it through the medium of English .......