Friday, March 16, 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 : " What did you think of your party's results in the local elections in Dublin ? They were much less than half the ten percent in the North ."

GERRY ADAMS : " I think the results were most striking for a party of our size . We got a sizeable vote in the areas where we stood . It took the Workers' Party a long time to build up anywhere near the same vote and in quite a few areas we beat the Labour Party. I think that what an awful lot of people forget is that we did that while censored by Section 31.

No spokesperson for our party was interviewed by any of the main daily newspapers or by RTE radio or television . I'm quite sure that if the Labour Party or the Workers' Party were to be censored like that , they wouldn't exist today . So our vote was quite respectable . "

From 'MAGILL' magazine, August 1983 .

Raymond Gilmour was an informer when he joined the IRA " avenge the death of my best friend , Colm McNutt, who was shot by British soldiers.." , Gilmour said in court . Who set Colm McNutt up ? , some relatives ask : McNutt had tried to hijack a car in the Bogside , and the four occupants , members of the SAS in civilian dress , shot him dead . Colm McNutt had not suddenly appeared with a revolver : it takes time to set up a hijacking and he would have had to tell his unit beforehand . Or maybe remarked on it to a friend .

"That woman there , " Mrs Gilmour said , indicating a woman who had frozen her with a glance , " is very cold to me ." You have to understand her feelings , mammy , a daughter explained , her man might be jailed for years and she has a family to raise . But it's not my fault , Mrs Gilmour said , as she burst again into tears - my man's gone , too . Her Sinn Fein minders tried to console her . For months they have defended her against the outrage of others in the community . Raymond Gilmour's returned wife Lorraine had already been thumped by the wife of a prisoner as she sat in a Derry cafe having a cup of tea .

Martin McGuinness had gone to the wife to explain that this was not good - having tea in Derry , living it up in a Cyprus hotel while my husband is in jail , the wife had spluttered . The Gilmour family has to be protected , Sinn Fein explained - they are the emotional link with Raymond , and if that link is broken there is no hope of him recanting . It is common knowledge that some of the prisoner's relatives are insisting that Raymond Gilmour's father be shot dead.......

These notes attempt to record the left-wing organisations which have existed in Ireland since 1960 . No attempt has been made to record purely local organisations outside Dublin and Belfast , or microscopic groups which never reached double figures . The larger organisations have been presented in more detail .
From 'GRALTON' magazine, 1983.
By John Goodwillie.
(NOTE : Links in the following article are as accurate as possible - not all the groups mentioned left a discernible 'footprint' .)

DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST PARTY: formed in 1982 as an amalgamation of 'The Socialist Party' and the 'Limerick Socialist Organisation', together with members of the 'British And Irish Communist Organisation'. With Jim Kemmy's defeat in 1982 it lost it's only seat in Leinster House.

DUBLIN ANARCHIST GROUP: formed in 1978 , ceased to function in 1979 . Most of its members were later involved in the 'Anarchist Bookshop Collective'.

INDEPENDENT SOCIALIST PARTY: formed in 1976 as a replacement for the 'Irish Committee For A Socialist Programme'. The 'ISP' was known for the membership of Bernadette McAliskey, but it was never more than a small group and ceased to function around 1978 .