Friday, January 20, 2006

The following statement was issued subsequent to a meeting of the Caretaker Executive of Sinn Fein on January 17th 1970 .

The leadership of the Republican Movement was obsessed with the Commission and getting its recommendations adopted , and preparations for the defence of our people did not receive the necessary attention . This was an underlying reason for the 'walk-out' : despite repeated warnings from last May on , sufficient priority was not given to this matter , with results too well known to require enumeration .

We will not dwell at length on this matter since it is self-evident to any observer of the Northern scene . We might add that we feel particularly strongly on this point ; we find absolutely incomprehensible from any Republican stand-point the campaigning in favour of retaining the Stormont parliament in August , September and October last when it was in danger of being abolished altogether by the British government .

In any future struggle for freedom it would surely be preferable to have a direct confrontation with the British government on Irish soil without the Stormont junta being interposed . In any event , the taking away of the Orange Order's power-bloc would surely be a step forward rather than backward . The line of policy adopted at the time was , of course , yet another product of the 'policy-makers' who by this time must have felt really secure and able to dictate.......


On 30 January 1972 , 14 civilians were shot dead by the British Army . They had been taking part in a civil rights march in Derry , protesting against internment without trial .
British 'Lord' Widgery was highly selective in the 'evidence' he used in his 'official' report on the matter - and some of the accounts he chose to include were highly suspect. The victims' families have campaigned for justice ever since . Their case is too strong to ignore any longer .
First published in 'MAGILL' magazine , February 1998 .
By Eamonn McCann .
(Note - on Saturday 28th January next , a Commemoration to mark the 34th Anniversary of Bloody Sunday will be held at the GPO in Dublin between 1PM and 3PM . All Welcome.)

The British government has two closely related problems in dealing with Bloody Sunday : the first has to do with political motivation and responsibility for the massacre , the second with the possibility that a subsequent cover-up was organised at the highest level within the British political and legal establishments .

The facts suggest as a likelihood that the military operation was approved in advance by representatives of both the North of Ireland and British governments and mounted in order to shore up the Stormont administration headed by Mr. Brian Faulkner and that , thereafter , the lord chief justice of England conspired for political reasons to conceal or distort the truth and thus to pervert the course of justice .

There are no foreseeable circumstances in which a British government would sanction an inquiry that it was aware might establish these likelihoods as fact ; in other words , there is currently no possibility of the key demand of the families of the victims being met . Twenty-six years on (ie 1972-1998) , the 'Bloody Sunday' issue is as far from resolution as ever .......


By Comdt. General Tomas Maguidhir (Thomas Maguire) , October 1986.

Tom Maguire :
Comdt. General Tom Maguire was Officer Commanding of the South Mayo Brigade of the Irish Republican Army in the Black-and-Tan war .

He led the Brigade Flying Column in the Kilfall and Tourmakeady ambushes and in the latter action was seriously wounded . In May 1921 he was elected Sinn Fein T.D. for South Mayo-South Rescommon and was later appointed General Officer Commanding , Second Western Division IRA . In January 1922 in the Second Dail Eireann he voted for the All-Ireland Republic and against the Treaty .

At various times during the 1920's he was a member of the IRA Executive . In October 1922 he was captured by Free State forces and interned in Athlone Barracks . In January 1923 he was one of six men set aside for execution : the other five men faced the firing squad .......