" 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.)



This blog was listed as one of the 'Finalists' in the '2016 current affairs/politics' category of the Littlewoods Ireland blog awards - but we didn't win the award. But not to worry -thanks to everyone involved for getting us to the final stage of the competition and sure we'll try again the next time!

Friday, November 10, 2006

THE SEEDS OF A POLICE STATE .......
There is substantial evidence that a major crime was perpetrated within the Garda Siochana five years ago .
The evidence for this crime has certainly been available to senior Gardai ever since then , but no enquiry whatsoever has taken place , let alone any Garda being disciplined in connection with that crime .
By Vincent Browne and Derek Dunne .
From 'MAGILL' magazine , September 1983 .

In the tunnel , Osgur Breathnach stated that Detective Garda Thomas Fitzgerald and Detective Inspector John Murphy attempted to pull his coat off , that he was slapped , punched , kneed , banged against a wall , that his arms were held , and that he was shouted at . He alleged further that his alleged part in the Sallins mail train robbery was being repeated over and over again to him .

When he was taken back upstairs to the Bridewell Garda Station , he alleged that Detective Garda Thomas Fitzgerald and Detective Inspector John Murphy pulled a chair from under him causing him to fall to the ground , and that he was pulled from one Garda Detective to another , that he was by this time dizzy , sore all over , confused , and had difficulty in breathing . He also alleged that he was beaten by other detectives whom he could not identify , that the statement he signed was not his own , but was concocted by the Gardai , and that he was forced to sign it in order to avoid further beatings .

The time on his statement is 6.00am on Wednesday , April 7 , 1976 - he had been in custody 41 hours at the time of his making a 'confession' . Dr. Noel Smith , who had been the Breathnach family doctor for some years , was asked by relatives to go to the Four Courts to examine Osgur Breathnach prior to the Habeas Corpus application on the afternoon of Wednesday , April 7 , 1976 : he examined Breathnach at 5.15pm that evening , just under 12 hours after the self-incriminatory statement had been signed . The report the doctor gave was shocking.......
(MORE LATER).



(Martin McGuinness , left , with Henry Kissinger , as usual , on the right ...)

DISARMING MARTIN .......
All (P)Sinn Fein leaders have a series of mantras and mini-speeches which they seek to get into every interview , regardless of the question .
The task of the journalist is to avoid setting off these reflex responses : the problem with Martin McGuinness is that he does it so pleasantly that it seems impolite to interrupt him .
From 'MAGILL' magazine , March 1999 .
By John Waters .

The moment of truth is now upon us : as we spoke , at the start of the last week in February , the stalemate remained . And , while the word on the wind , ably assisted by UUP spin doctors , was that Tony Blair was preparing to back the Trimble position on decommissioning in the run up to the March 10th deadline , Martin McGuinness was laying much store on earlier indications from Mo Mowlam that , in the wake of the 'cross-community vote of determination' , she would move to trigger the d'Hondt mechanism which would automatically form the Six County 'executive' complete with two (P) Sinn Fein members .

As Martin McGuinness put it - " From here , it's over , effectively , to the British government , to Tony Blair and Mo Mowlam . The British government has the authority ('1169...' Comment - sic . What 'authority' does the British government have in Ireland ?) now to establish the shadow executive , and have indicated publicly that they would do that in the first few days of March , and that it's their intention then to have powers devolved from both Dublin and London around the 10th of March . Now , the question is : what are Ulster Unionists going to do to stop that , or do the Ulster Unionists want to stop that ? Or are they going to go ahead with that ? Or are they going to , as some people have speculated , bring a proposal before the assembly that (P) Sinn Fein be excluded , have that debate , lose the debate and then press on with the implementation of the agreement , blaming the two governments and so on ? "

That we have reached this state of deja vu is disturbing indeed , given in particular the manner in which the 'Good Friday Agreement' was greeted throughout the world , ('1169...' Comment - " greeted throughout the world " because the Establishments involved in promoting it did so in a misleading fashion ie 'the big lie' that it was 'the end of the age old conflict in Ireland' was pushed by all anti-Republican groups , including those who really should have known better : remember the 'Tri-colour car cavalcade' on the Falls Road ?) culminating in the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize jointly to John Hume and David Trimble.......
(MORE LATER).



GUNS TO BREAD AND BUTTER .......
EDDIE ROONEY looks at the transformation of the Official Republican movement from a revolutionary organisation run by its military wing to a social democratic electoral party .
From 'Fortnight' magazine , 1983 .

Thers is also the question of the lack of internal democracy inside the Workers Party : whether one labels the rigid internal control of members as 'military discipline' or 'democratic centralism' the effect can be stifling , and key decisions have been made over the heads of ordinary members .

Even the OIRA Convention , which traditionally decided which resolutions were to be passed at the Ard Fheis , has not yet been laid to rest . Despite formal democratic procedures , in practice there is little scope for change from below . It is likely only to be a matter of time before the new breed of members feel constrained by this . The problem with implementing more changes lies in the danger of alienating the remaining working-class members .

The Workers Party's recent history suggests that a move towards the 'middle ground' of North of Ireland politics represents a move away from their working-class supporters.......
(MORE LATER).