Friday, March 02, 2007


The recent strike by BBC journalists over the 'REAL LIVES' programme and the dispute at RTE over the interview with NORAID representative MARTIN GALVIN have focused world attention on Sinn Fein once again .MICHAEL KELLY spoke to Sinn Fein president GERRY ADAMS at interviews in Dublin and Belfast , conducted over the course of the past month .

From 'IN DUBLIN' magazine, August 1985 .

MICHAEL KELLY : " On that point , how can you justify supporting the IRA's violence ? "

GERRY ADAMS : " Well , first of all , Sinn Fein's position is much more honest and logical than Fianna Fail's position . If Charlie Haughey says to you - ' The six county state is not a viable social or economic entity , the British government have no right to be there and British troops should leave ...' , the honest and logical conclusion to that is : ' If you live there * and you want to have a clatter at them , I wouldn't object ' . ('1169...' Comment - why confine "having a clatter at them" to those that live in the Six Counties ? It's an issue which effects everyone on the isle .) Now we take the view that the Irish people have the right to national self-determination . We think that people around the world , which includes the Irish , have the right to decide their own tactics (....once Messers. Ahern , Blair , Bush and Paisley approve , of course..) and to use armed struggle if need be. Other parties say its all right to do it in El Salvador , Nicaragua , Palestine or South Africa , but 'you can't do it in Ireland' . We say it's not only ok for all those people , but it's also ok for Irish people. "

From 'MAGILL' magazine, August 1983 .

Raymond Gilmour's sister stood up in the court : " Your honour , can my mother not speak to Raymond ? She hasn't seen him for a year . " The RUC moved quickly to where she was standing : " Your honour " , she repeated , clearly and not shouting , " can my mother not speak to Raymond ?" The RUC were on top of her by now , grabbing her , pulling her , pushing her , and she shouted in protest and one of them lifted her bodily off the bench and stumbled with her down the aisle , and she was pulling his hair and his cap was falling to the ground and her splayed body was horizontally blocking the doorway but RUC reinforcements pushed and shoved and punched her through the doorway , with great noise .

The second sister was by now on her feet , pleading that her younger sister be left alone , the plea turning into shouted fear and anger , and even as she shouted the RUC were rushing towards her , descending on her , coming at her from both sides , pushing and punching , not able to grab her whole body because she was in the middle of the row , with friends on either side , but for one long dreadful moment her arms were tugged out on either side of her , like a crucifixion without a cross or nails and then she was pulled head first over the benches and down , over the head of the third sister who had by now risen to her feet too , and was trying to stop the passage of her sister's body above her , but she was also grabbed by the RUC and the two of them were beaten in a melee of RUC uniforms out of the door.

Meanwhile , John Gilmour , the eldest boy in the family , was on his feet in the courtroom.......

Sinn Fein's recent election success in the North of Ireland have focussed attention on the Provisionals' new turn to political activity at local level . There have been parallel developments in the organisation in the 26 counties .
'GRALTON' magazine spoke to Paddy Bolger , Ard Comhairle member and National Organiser for Sinn Fein ,with special responsibility for Dublin , about the changed perspective .
From 'GRALTON' magazine , August/September 1983 .

'GRALTON' magazine : " Are you consciously grooming candidates at this stage , a year ahead of the earliest possible date for the local election ? "

PADDY BOLGER : " All of the candidates we'll be running in Dublin have been selected locally . They haven't yet been ratified by the Dublin Comhairle Ceanntair but that's really a formality , as it would be a formality at Ard Comhairle level . We have six advice centres , one of which is full-time . We're currently buying caravans which would be mobile advice centres , and have already ear-marked eight definite areas in Dublin that we'll run in . We haven't ruled out running in more , or in all , if organisational improvements allow . "