" 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!

Friday, August 19, 2005

GEORGE SEAWRIGHT , the tough-talking Scotsman and self-proclaimed "honest bigot" from the Shankill Road , is a DUP member of both Belfast City Council and the Northern Assembly . He is also the politician most closely associated with the Loyalist paramilitaries .
He believes that the rise of Sinn Fein has made an armed confrontation between the forces of Loyalism and Republicanism inevitable .
From 'FORTNIGHT' magazine , May 1984 .

George Seawright (DUP) believes one of the clearest signs that the two sides were now irreconcilable was the low vote received by 'The Workers Party' in Nationalist working-class areas - " This signifies to Protestants the rejection by the Roman Catholic and Nationalist community of non-sectarian Socialism , an old-fashioned Republicanism - if you could call it that - based on the ideals of Wolfe Tone and company which believed that Socialism could be implemented in Ireland accommodating Protestants and Catholics alike . ('1169.... ' Comment - We presume Mr Seawright was simply being mischievous in linking the Stickies ('WP') with Wolfe Tone ...)

Provisionalism is dramatically different ; it is something rising up and saying quite clearly that there can be no real accommodation for Protestants or for a people who wish to live as a separate entity on this island - their culture , their identity , would not be recognised in the event of the Provisionals taking over . " ( ' 1169 ... ' Comment - ...again : another incorrect 'assumption' by George Seawright - he no doubt used this line to 'encourage' loyalists to attack their nationalist neighbours ie ''get them before they get you " . Seawright and his type were part of the problem - not part of the solution . He went on to claim that the 'Brits Out!' slogan , as used by Irish Republicans , was directed at ordinary unionists and loyalists as well as at the British military and political presence - yet another incorrect 'assumption' . )


The Sinn Fein electoral wagon is slowing down . As a result , the IRA is likely to begin stepping up its war against the Northern State . GENE KERRIGAN reports from Belfast and also interviews Sinn Fein's DANNY MORRISON on the party's recent successes and failures .
From ' MAGILL ' magazine , September 1984.

' MAGILL ' Magazine : " Getting involved in electoral politics necessitates explaining and arguing politics , things get more complicated , the old simplicities are not enough . Have these developments not created a gap between the leadership and its older rank and file , particularly in the South ? "

Danny Morrison : " I think Sinn Fein in the South has undergone a lot of developments as well . It's not just a paper-selling organisation and collecting for prisoners . It has started to get involved . Our successes are probably more marked in Dublin than in other places . But there has been an influx of new members , especially as a result of the European election , new cummain flourishing in different areas and that's good for the organisation .

Now , the social content of the organisation has not changed . Although there have been a lot of people coming in who don't directly come from Republican families , who have never been in jail - I mean , I would be afraid that too much of an influx of that type of people would upset the balance inside the Republican organisation . ( ' 1169 .... ' Comment - ....and that is exactly what happened : the 'new members' were not educated on the politics of the Movement - they were 'militant Nationalists' more so than 'Republicans' and , within a few years of this interview , the Provisional Sinn Fein leadership 'pointed' those new members towards a 'nationalist solution' (ie like the SDLP and Fianna Fail) and were then able to declare , to the objectors within - ' ....but that's where the members want to go ..' . A sleight of hand operation . )

And you would have people coming in who would perhaps be 'trendy' , who would not have had that long history of involvement that's actually the anchor of our stability and our consistency . And that might push things too quickly . ( ' 1169 .... ' Comment - ....so it was apparently acceptable to "push things..." slowly ... ?) The leadership can't get ahead of the grassroots . It has to bring the grassroots along with it . We face many problems in the 26 Counties : the policy of abstentionism obviously handicaps our potential for gathering votes . ( ' 1169 ... ' Comment - ...but not , apparently , regarding Westminster , it seems ... !) But abstentionism has been a very important issue with the Movement down the years . You don't change abstentionism as a result of all these new people coming in and getting a majority - ( ' 1169 ... ' Comment - ...you 'should'nt ' , Danny . Not "don't " or 'can't ' ... ) that's why you can't allow people to come in and change the social content of the organisation . ( ' 1169 .... ' Comment - ...unless the leadership themselves are in favour of such a move , of course ....)

Any difficult issues which we face in the months and years ahead , we're going to have to resolve them on the basis of being completely united and with almost total agreement about how you go forward . " ( ' 1169 .... ' Comment - ...two years after those fine words , Mr Morrison was one of those who opened the doors at the 1986 Sinn Fein Ard Fheis to let the terms "completely united .. " and "...with almost total agreement .. " escape . )


On 11 July 1986 , Stephen Moore , from Clones in County Monaghan , accepted £25,000 plus costs to settle an action out of court .
He had sued 'Ireland' and the Attorney General for injuries he had received in garda custody in Monaghan Garda Station in March 1983 .
In that same year , John Milne received £51,900 for injuries sustained at the hands of two named gardai in that same garda station . He was also awarded costs .
Despite the fact that more than £75,000 has been paid out as a result of garda activity in Monaghan Garda Station , no garda has been charged with a criminal offence . In fact , some of the gardai who were accused have been promoted .

Stephen Moore ; two Detectives : in his own words , this is what happened ....

... " My parents arrived Sunday evening around 5 PM . I had a half-hour visit with them . I was interviewed by two guards from Clones before my parents arrived . They were extremely nice . They said more or less that I was an embarrassment to my family and "...you can't get away with this sort of thing around Clones .. " . They asked me if I wanted to see my parents and I said "yes" . When my parents left , the interview continued .

There was no ill-treatment whatsoever . The interview lasted until about half six/seven o'clock , as far as I can remember . Two other Detectives came in that I did'nt know . They did'nt stay very long . There was no ill-treatment . I was put back in my cell then . Sometime around eight o'clock , a Detective came into the cell . He told me to get up and follow the other Detectives that were outside the door . He turned left and went up a stairs . There was a young Detective in front of me on the way up the stairs . When I was going up the stairs the older Detective behind me hit me a slap across the back of the head .

I had an idea something was going to happen , I knew they were'nt taking me up the stairs for nothing . It was the first time during the time I was in Monaghan Barracks that I was being taken upstairs . I was brought to a small box room . The minute I got into the room , they started kicking and punching . They started leathering into me . They had a statement written out and they wanted me to sign it . The beating that them two fellows gave me went on for about one and a half hours . In that space of time , they placed a cardboard box over my head when they kicked me and punched me . I did'nt know where it was coming from . One would twist my arm up my back while the other would hit me .

When they'd hit me , I'd move - one of them would grab me and twist my arm up my back to keep me in the one position where I could'nt avoid being hit . They had a pen and placed it into my hand and one would grab my hand and force it down on the statement , to try and make me sign it . They kept referring to "..we've had harder men in here .. " and they gave names of people who , they say , broke ....... "