Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Not since the earliest days of the State has the role of the Irish Army (sic) been under such intense scrutiny . And not since the war years has it had such a forceful political master as Patrick Mark Cooney .
From 'The Phoenix' magazine , 3 February 1984 .

The year 1977 saw the 'electoral fluke' in which Paddy Cooney got his comeuppance : he lost his seat ! But there was the 'consolation prize' of leader of Fine Gael in the State Senate for the next four years - but he still insisted on keeping abreast of 'justice' matters . Towards the end of 1977 , Paddy Cooney charged that the "...notoriously guilty.." were not convicted because of their "...clever manipulation.." of legal technicalities !

His decrease in salary was cushioned somewhat by a £28,000 award made against the 'Sunday World' newspaper when he sued them in a defamation action . This stint in the State Senate seems to have set him thinking about politics on a global scale : it was around this time that he said that "...a takeover by communists could be avoided by a political , and if necessary , a defence union , of Europe . " He succeeded in getting himself back into Leinster House in 1981 and held the 'Transport And Communications' portfolio in the short-lived Coalition administration of that year .

Sitting on the backbench once more , Paddy Cooney found time to criticise the Irish charity , 'Trocaire' , saying that much of the money donated "...went to a myraid of quasi-social and political projects .. " and added that if the Catholic Church hierarchy wanted to promote social and political revolution in the Third World (!) they should tell people what they were collecting the money for , and not for the relief of hunger . Fine Gael leader Garret Fitzgerald (on the left of the photograph : the person on the right is a female) was forced to wield a Very Big Stick for this outburst by Cooney and that stick was brought down unequivocally on Paddy Cooney's knuckles . But all was forgiven as another election ensued and Mr. Cooney was then elevated to the Defence portfolio : this was seen as a concession to the less liberal wing of Fine Gael.......

The unchanging face of repression .
PETER HAYES examines reactions to the latest shoot-to-kill deaths .
From 'IRIS' magazine , March 1983.

If British strategists hope that an assassination campaign against Irish Republican activists specifically , will be accepted by nationalists as a 'logical outcome' of those activists' military opposition to British rule * , then they are sadly mistaken . (* ' 1169...' Comment - That 'logic' was , then [1983] , used by , amongst others , the political muppets in Leinster House and the SDLP ie - ' ...Westminster only has troops here because of the (para-)military opposition shown to them....' . Today , that nonsense is on the tip of the tongue of the new 'respectables'.)

Republican military resistance , as has been shown so often before , is too deeply a part of nationalists' rejection of the Orange State to be regarded as anything other than entirely legitmate , both politically and morally , and for the deaths of those Republican activists to be anything other than a deeply-felt tragedy . If the shoot-to-kill tactics persist , the Catholic bishops will have even fewer "...voices of moderation.. " left to talk to .
(Next-'KERRY GARDA CRISIS' ; from 1985.)

From 'The Phoenix' magazine , October 1985 .

The 'cloak-and-dagger' days for the Workers Party are almost gone : although Eoghan Harris always took his role as 'Supreme Guru' very seriously , his elitist and bullying ways made him many enemies within the Workers Party .

Gone now are the days when a half-hour pep-talk from Harris in a smoke-filled back room would swing the party behind his latest point of view - his theories , too , have been somewhat discredited . The Telesis Report and the performance of multinationals inside the Irish economy in recent years have made his booklet 'The Irish Industrial Revolution' a tract which 'the comrades' would rather forget . Many members of the Workers Party also baulk at Eoghan Harris's complete commitment to the 'Two Nations' theory . Personally , poor Eoghan now has to contend with the twin debilities of being middle-aged and middle-rich !

Despite his favoured proletarian stance , Eoghan Harris and his wife must now enjoy a joint income of around £50,000 per year and the 'strain' of it is beginning to tell : the family is about to move house from an inner-city-but-chic residence off Dublin's South Circular Road to the blatantly burgeois comfort of Monkstown , overlooking Dublin Bay.......

An tAthair Eoghan Ó Gramhnaigh (Father Eoghan O'Growney).

We wrote an article on Father Eoghan on this blog and have recently been contacted by a kind reader , Donncha , from Beal Feirste (Belfast) , who complimented our blog (*BLUSH!*) and wrote - " Could I request that you highlight in some way the fact that the homestead of this great man from county Meath is lying derelict. I think it is a shame that some memorial has not long ago been erected at this sacred spot. I know that there is a fine statue of him at the Church in Athboy but I think that something special should be erected at the place of his birth. I wrote to the Meath Co. Council but to date I have not received an acknowledgement of any sort. Keep up the good work."

It is a travesty , Donncha , that those who currently have the authority to authorise memorials to the the men and women that sacrificed so much , so often , in an attempt to build a better future for unknown generations would , instead , rather use taxpayers money on so-called 'modern street furniture' : an injustice to those of us who are proud of our history . We can at least console ourselves by believing that things will not always be so .

Thank You again , Donncha , a Chara ; your message was a joy to receive , considering the amount of anti-Republican/anti-Irish comments we get each week .
Slan go foill anois . Sharon .